- See picks against the spread for the biggest games on the Week 6 College Football slate
- No. 7 Miami visiting No. 1 Clemson is the marquee matchup, but a Red River Showdown featuring desperate teams and No 14 Tennessee visiting No. 3 Georgia are also on the slate
- Read below for the picks and odds for Week 6 of the college football season
Week 6 of the college football season gets underway Thursday, but the marquee matchup is a big one: No. 1 Clemson is hosting No. 7 Miami in an ACC showdown that offers the Hurricanes a chance to make a statement on the national stage.
Meanwhile, the Red River Showdown pits a desperate Oklahoma and Texas against each other at the Cotton Bowl, while No. 14 Tennessee faces off against No. 3 Georgia between the hedge.
Here are my three favorites ATS picks for Week 6.
#7 Miami vs #1 Clemson Odds
|Miami Hurricanes||+14.5 (-114)||+440||0 63.5 (-106)|
|Clemson Tigers||-14.5 (-108)||-650||U 63.5 (-114)|
All odds taken Oct. 8th on FanDuel
Pick #1: The ‘Canes Will Hang With Clemson
Clemson beat Virginia 41-23 in Week 5 as Trevor Lawrence and Travis Etienne led the top-ranked team in the land to another victory. The projected No. 1 pick in the 2020 NFL Draft threw for 329 yards and three touchdowns, while Etienne matched a mark set by Tim Tebow in the win.
The senior running back’s 187 all-purpose yard, two touchdown performance marked the 38th game he’s hit pay-dirt at least once, matching Tebow and Louisiana Tech’s Kenneth Dixon’s all-time mark.
Be honest — do you think you could tackle Travis Etienne? pic.twitter.com/SO7Wc3JZv2
— Clemson Football (@ClemsonFB) October 4, 2020
But the Tigers were less than dominant. A slow start coming off a Week 4 bye saw the No. 1 team holding only a 3-0 lead before Etienne’s 16-yard score late in the first quarter. The Cavs drew to within 27-17 midway through the third quarter before Dabo Swinney’s group pulled away.
Miami will be coming off a bye heading into South Carolina after demolishing in-state rival Florida State 52-10 in Week 4.
Houston transfer quarterback D’Eriq King has Manny Diaz’s program off to a 3-0 start for the first time since 2017 and has yet to throw an interception this season. In fact, he compares favorably to Lawrence on third downs.
Highest-graded QBs on third down:
1. Trevor Lawrence, Clemson – 94.9
2. Spencer Rattler, Oklahoma – 94.1
3. D’Eriq King, Miami – 94.0
4. Mac Jones, Alabama – 93.6 pic.twitter.com/TaMtnI9d7q
— PFF College (@PFF_College) October 7, 2020
But what was truly impressive in the highest-scoring victory over Florida State in series history was the ‘Canes’ defense. The unit racked up six sacks, 13 tackles for loss and three interceptions against the ‘Noles.
Do I expect a repeat of that performance Saturday? Absolutely not. While Brent Venables’ defense will no doubt slow King down, the two-touchdown spread feels a little too big.
Pick: Miami +14.5 (-114)
#22 Texas vs Oklahoma Odds
|Texas Longhorns||+2.5 (-110)||+112||0 72.5 (-110)|
|Oklahoma Sooners||-2.5 (-110)||-138||U 72.5 (-110)|
Pick #2: Sooners Bounce Back Against the Longhorns
The Red River Showdown may not have the luster of years past – it’s the first time since 1999 that neither team is ranked in the Top 20 entering the game – but the contest pitting Oklahoma against Texas is still intriguing. That’s because both teams are in desperate need of a win.
Lincoln Riley on Red River Showdown.
“Even with the differences this year … It never gets old, man. This game is always as fun as it gets.”
“It’s easily the best rivalry game in college football.”#OUDNA | #BoomerSoonerhttps://t.co/may93R77KZ
— Sooner Gridiron (@soonergridiron) October 7, 2020
The Sooners have dropped back-to-back regular season games for the first time since that same 1999 season, while Texas is coming off a home loss to unranked TCU. Oklahoma has a number of issues, partially summarized here.
Even with a freshman quarterback and a porous defense, the Sooners are still somehow co-favorites to win the Big 12 title.
👀🤘 @texasfootball is 10-3 in the Red River Showdown when they’re the only ranked team in the matchup
Who gets the win this weekend? pic.twitter.com/MkjtOdjJBP
— FOX College Football (@CFBONFOX) October 7, 2020
History seems to favor Texas in this spot. But I simply don’t trust Sam Ehlinger and Tom Herman to send Oklahoma to a third straight defeat. I expect a shootout, so the over is a good bet. I like Lincoln Riley’s squad to get back on the winning track at the Cotton Bowl.
Pick: Oklahoma -2.5 (-110)
#14 Tennessee vs #3 Georgia Odds
|Tennessee Volunteers||+12.5 (-110)||+440||0 43.5 (-108)|
|Georgia Bulldogs||-12.5 (-110)||-650||U 43.5 (-112)|
Pick #3: Bulldogs Keep Barking
Believe it or not, Tennessee has beaten Georgia twice (2015 and 2016) in the last five years. Those victories seem like a distant memory to Volunteer fans after three straight losses to the Dawgs by an average outcome of 41-9.
Jeremy Pruitt’s program comes into this year’s outing as nearly two-touchdown underdogs. The Vols are 2-0 following wins over South Carolina and Missouri, but Georgia is a significant step up in competition over the Gamecocks and Tigers.
UGA has handled Arkansas and Auburn with relative ease, winning by 27, and 21 points, respectively. UT feels like its somewhere between the Razorbacks and Tigers – so I’m predicting the Dawgs win by roughly 20 points.
Kirby Smart’s team has high expectations in 2020 and I don’t expect an upstart Tennessee to give it much of a problem.
Pick: Georgia -12.5 (-110)