The ABC prime-time game each Saturday is generally reserved for the marquee programs in college football and certainly only those from Power 5 conferences (or Notre Dame). However, this week the American Athletic Conference gets that national spotlight – as well as a visit from ESPN College GameDay – as No. 15 SMU visits No. 24 Memphis with a 7:30 p.m. ET kickoff.
Odds courtesy of OddsShark.com
Quite rare for two AAC schools to be ranked – there’s even a third one with No. 17 Cincinnati. SMU is one of a handful of unbeatens nationally and is ranked the highest it has since before the program was given the Death Penalty by the NCAA in the late 1980s. Memphis sits one game back in the AAC West Division. Good chance the winner of this game will play Cincinnati in the conference title game. Memphis is a 6-point favorite and has covered five straight against SMU.
Could be a bit of a letdown game Saturday at 3:30 p.m. ET for No. 22 Kansas State. The Wildcats re-entered the Top 25 thanks to last Saturday’s stunning upset of former No. 5 Oklahoma, which likely severely dented the Big 12’s chances of getting a team in the College Football Playoff. K-State players probably won’t have much trouble getting amped up this week, though, considering the Wildcats visit arch-rival Kansas. KSU is -6.5 and is 4-1 ATS in its past five trips to Lawrence.
It’s a rematch of last season’s Pac-12 Championship Game at 4 p.m. ET as No. 9 Utah visits unranked Washington. The Utes, who lost 10-3 to the Huskies in that 2018 game, are tied atop the Pac-12 South Division with Southern Cal, while Washington has disappointed at 2-3 in the conference and won’t be repeating in the North Division. Utah is a 3.5-point favorite in what figures to be another defensive battle. The Huskies are 4-10 ATS in their past 14 conference games.
The College Football Playoff hopes for No. 16 Notre Dame are gone following last week’s blowout loss at Michigan because it was the Irish’s second overall loss of the season. They could still get to a New Year’s Six bowl by winning out. Notre Dame hosts unranked Virginia Tech at 2:30 p.m. ET. Coach Brian Kelly’s squad is a 17.5-point favorite. The Irish have won 16 straight home games, by an average of more than 21 points per game.