National Preview: Week 7

Derick E. Hingle-US PRESSWIRE - Presswire

Penn State will be enjoying a well-earned week off after rolling off four consecutive victories. To compound the issue of not being able to watch Penn State, the Big Ten likely offers it's worst slate of the season that is filled with uneven match-ups. However, don't start planning those home projects just yet. There are still a few national games that will make for an interesting Saturday of college football.

Game of the Week
(3)South Carolina at (9) LSU ESPN 8 p.m.
South Carolina proved they are for real by mauling the fifth-ranked Georgia Bulldogs last week. A week later, they must prove themselves again in Death Valley against an LSU team coming off its first regular season loss since Thanksgiving weekend of 2010. LSU has struggled mightily on offense the past few weeks, but don't be surprised if Les Miles has a few tricks up his sleeve on Saturday. Expect a very entertaining and hard-fought battle against two evenly-matched teams that will live on in the victorious team's lore. I'll give South Carolina a slight edge thanks to a dominating defensive line and a bruising running back that can wear down a defense to close out a game.
Prediction: South Carolina- 21 LSU- 20

Worth Watching
(17)Stanford at (7) Notre Dame 3:30 p.m. NBC
Ever notice how coaches that are known for being a great offensive mind usually end up winning thanks to a stout defense and solid running game (Brian Billick in Baltimore, Steve Spurrier in South Carolina)? Brian Kelly looks like the newest member of the club. Stanford has proven they are comfortable playing this style, so don't expect a lot of scoring in this one.
Prediction: Stanford-16 Notre Dame- 13

(15)Texas vs. (13)Oklahoma (in Dallas) Noon ABC
The Red River Shootout loses a bit of national luster as both teams suffered early-season losses, but don't expect this game to lose any of its intensity on the field. Texas QB David Ash has continued to improve, and had one of the most efficient half-seasons out of any quarterback in the nation. Expect a typical Big 12 shootout, with one team having just a little bit of extra firepower to put them on top.
Prediction: Texas- 45 Oklahoma- 41

(11)USC at Washington 7 p.m. FOX
Washington stunned Stanford in a night game at home in week five thanks to a brilliant defensive game plan. There's absolutely no reason it couldn't work against the Trojans as well.
Prediction: USC- 17 Washington- 14

Keep an Eye On

(4)Florida at Vanderbilt 6 p.m. ESPNU
Florida is coming off a very emotional win over LSU and could be due for a letdown. Vanderbilt is not a team to sleep on, especially at home. Expect another hard-fought, defensive battle for the Gators.
Prediction: Florida- 17 Vanderbilt- 13

(6)Kansas State at Iowa State Noon FX
Iowa State has a knack for pulling off upsets in Ames, which could make this game really interesting. They will have to truly earn it this week, though. Bill Snyder is one of the top contenders for national coach of the year honors and the Wildcats are too disciplined to overlook the Cyclones.
Prediction: Kansas State- 31 Iowa State- 20

(22)Texas A&M at (23)Louisiana Tech 9 p.m. ESPNU
This match-up was set for week one, but had to be postponed because of Hurricane Issac. It's doubtful anyone reasonably expected both teams to be among the Top 25 by the time they finally met in week seven, but here they are. Both teams are capable of putting up plenty of points, so you may need that extra cup of coffee to stay up for this one.
Prediction: Texas A&M- 48 Louisiana Tech- 42

(18)Louisville at Pitt 11 a.m. ESPNU
Tune in just to see what a Pitt crowd looks like for an 11 a.m. kickoff.

Prediction: Louisville- 38 Pitt- 24

Editor's Choice: How I will be spending my Saturday
Noon:
TV1- Texas vs. Oklahoma
TV2- Wisconsin at Purdue
TV3- Iowa at Michigan State
Also Watching: Kansas State at Iowa State, Northwestern at Minnesota

3:30:
TV1- Stanford at Notre Dame
TV2- Illinois at Michigan
TV3- Alabama at Missouri
Also Watching: Oregon State at BYU, West Virginia at Texas Tech

Night Games:
TV1- South Carolina at LSU
TV2- USC at Washington
TV3- Ohio State at Indiana
Also Watching: Florida at Vanderbilt

Late Games:
TV1- Texas A&M at Louisiana Tech
TV2- Tennessee at Mississippi State

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