Friday night features three games on the college football slate, including two of the nations’ top 20 teams in action.
Here’s a closer look at those matchups:
#20 Virginia Cavaliers @ Miami Hurricanes (-2), 8:00 PM:
The 20th-ranked Virginia Cavaliers (4-1) dropped two spots in the rankings after taking their first loss of the season in South Bend against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish 35-20.
Virginia got out to a hot start with a 17-10 halftime lead but saw that slip away as the offense struggled allowing eight sacks and a fumble returned for a touchdown.
Seniors receivers Hasise Dubois and Joe Reed both contributed a touchdown and 100 yards receiving. Dubois had nine receptions for 143 yards while Reed also had nine receptions for 107 yards.
The Miami Hurricanes (2-3) saw their struggles continue after suffering a home loss to the Virginia Tech Hokies 42-35.
Miami trailed 28-7 at half but showed heart by battling back to tie the game at 35 with three minutes remaining. Quarterback N’Kosi Perry was electric completing 28-of-47 for 422 yards, four touchdowns and one interception.
Virginia is my play at (+2). And I’ll sprinkle some on the moneyline at (+114). Despite Miami being at home, I have a hard time trusting the Hurricanes’ passing defense against the talented Cavalier offense.
Colorado Buffaloes (+20.5) @ #13 Oregon Ducks, 10:00 PM:
The 13th-ranked Oregon Ducks grinded out a fourth consecutive win after defeating the California Golden Bears 17-7.
Oregon was held scoreless in the first half but figured it out in the second half behind the efforts of quarterback Justin Herbert. The senior completed 20-of-33 for 214 yards, one touchdown and an interception.
Colorado (3-2) surrendered a 20-14 halftime lead and lost their first PAC-12 game of the season to the Arizona Wildcats 35-30.
Senior quarterback Steven Montez completed 28-of-42 for 299 yards and one touchdown.
The Buffaloes have played up to the competition with two wins against ranked opponents, upsetting both Arizona State and Nebraska by the score of 34-31.
Take the Ducks to cover (-20.5). Oregon’s offense usually draws all the attention, but this year the Ducks’ defense is making some serious noise. Oregon ranks sixth in the nation allowing (9.8 ppg).
Colorado will surely compete, but my expectation is the Ducks will control this home game from the opening kickoff.
Colorado State Rams (-3.5) @ New Mexico Lobos, 8:00 PM:
The New Mexico Lobos and Colorado State Rams are both significantly struggling, yet fortunately enough one of these teams will finally win again on Friday.
Colorado State (1-5) dropped a fourth consecutive game after losing at home to San Diego State 24-10.
Junior quarterback Patrick O’Brien completed 19-of-30 passes for 217 yards, one touchdown and one interception.
New Mexico (2-2) lost a second straight game after falling to San Jose State 32-21.
Senior dual threat quarterback Sheriron Jones was the main playmaker for the Lobos completing 7-of-16 passes for 127 yards, two touchdowns and three interceptions, adding 11 carries for 104 yards and one touchdown.
My pick is New Mexico (+3.5). I’ll take them on the moneyline as well. Also, strongly consider the over in this game at 66 points.
Both these defenses are allowing more than 35 ppg; New Mexico (39.6 ppg), Colorado State (36.5 ppg).
Both offenses are also totaling over 440 yards per game which aligns for a huge scoring output. I’m giving the Lobos the home-field advantage.