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Sport Bold predictions for Week 12 in college football

20:01  15 november  2019
20:01  15 november  2019 Source:   usatoday.com

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Shocking disappointments and better-than-expected performances are anticipated each weekend in the wild world of college football. Even if everyone knows they are coming, guessing when and where they will happen is difficult.

The USA TODAY Sports college football staff — Jace Evans, Paul Myerberg, George Schroeder, Erick Smith, Eddie Timanus and Dan Wolken — weigh in with some bold predictions for Week 12 of the college football season:

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Jace Evans

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Have I been picking Minnesota and Baylor to lose for several weeks now only to have them continue their magical unbeaten runs? Yes. Am I going to go against them yet again? Also yes. The No. 7 Golden Gophers are headed to Iowa City for a tough rivalry matchup against the No. 22 Hawkeyes, who have held Floyd of Rosedale since 2015 and won’t be eager to give it up. The No. 10 Bears – who have played five one-score games, including two overtime matchups to reach 9-0 – have an even tougher task as No. 8 Oklahoma comes to town. It’s hard to go undefeated, obviously, so the bet is these teams will fall to ranked foes to help crystalize the College Football Playoff picture going forward.

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a group of people wearing costumes: Iowa players holds up the Floyd of Rosedale trophy after beating Minnesota at TCF Bank Stadium in 2018.© Jesse Johnson, USA TODAY Sports Iowa players holds up the Floyd of Rosedale trophy after beating Minnesota at TCF Bank Stadium in 2018.

Paul Myerberg

Minnesota loses to Iowa in a close one for the Gophers’ first loss on the season. The single loss won’t eliminate Minnesota from making the College Football Playoff, since a 12-1 team with wins against Penn State, Wisconsin and Ohio State would have a pretty good case for the top four. But losing to the Hawkeyes would make the matchup with the Badgers on Nov. 30 a winner-take-all game for the West Division.

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George Schroeder

Despite rallying from a 14-0 deficit at home to beat Kansas State last week, doubts aplenty remain about this Texas team. It’s why Iowa State is favored to win Saturday (of course, the weather forecast – it’s supposed to be coooooooooold, y’all – might play a role, too). But the Longhorns will get another stellar game from Sam Ehlinger, who’ll light up Iowa State’s struggling secondary. And Texas’ defense, which has struggled similarly, will slow down Brock Purdy and the Cyclones just enough to give Texas its second consecutive victory.

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Erick Smith

Florida went all-in on winning the SEC East and lost their rivalry game to Georgia earlier this month. The Gators are now reduced to playing out the string and hoping to reach a New Year's Six bowl when the pairings are announced in three weeks. But before that all can happen, they have to run the table on their remaining three games.

Missouri has looked awful the previous three weeks away from home, especially on offense where the presence of quarterback Kelly Bryant has been missing. Bryant is due to return from a hamstring injury and the return to Faurot Field should give a lift to the Tigers.

Florida enters without the requisite urgency in this game and finds that Missouri is much better than it realized. The Gators head home ruing the missed opportunity and end up missing out on its preferred postseason destination.

Eddie Timanus

A couple of common sports tropes might prompt some prognosticators to pick against Minnesota this week.

First and foremost is the one I like to call the dreaded letdown. The Golden Gophers are coming off what was inarguably the biggest win in the program’s modern history, a takedown of Penn State that vaulted them from upstart outsider to playoff contender in the blink of an eye. Now they have to refill the tanks and get ready to face a neighborhood rival on the road that would like nothing better than to bring them back to earth.

Bold predictions for Week 13 in college football

  Bold predictions for Week 13 in college football Expect the unexpected in college football each weekend. USA TODAY experts weigh in with their bold predictions for Week 13 of the season.The USA TODAY Sports college football staff — Jace Evans, Paul Myerberg, George Schroeder, Erick Smith, Eddie Timanus and Dan Wolken — weigh in with some bold predictions for Week 13 of the college football season:

Speaking of which, of course you’ve heard of the Admiral Ackbar special — “It’s a trap!” Iowa can be a hard place to win, regardless of the visiting team’s ranking.

So will it happen to Minnesota? No, because the Gophers have something bigger to play for. No, not the Big Ten title and a playoff spot. I’m talking about the greatest trophy in all of sports. Yes, my long-time readers, you know me well. I could not let an opportunity to mention Floyd of Rosedale pass. The prized bronze pig has lived in Iowa City for the last four years, but he’ll be going back to the Twin Cities this weekend.

In all seriousness, Minnesota has its offense clicking while the Hawkeyes, quite simply, do not. Iowa’s overworked defense showed signs of crumbling at Wisconsin last week, and Minnesota has even more weapons than the Badgers. No letdown, no trap. Gophers win.

Dan Wolken

There are plenty of reasons to doubt Baylor's bona fides as a 9-0 team, but the signs from Oklahoma lately haven't been encouraging. The Sooners' defense has been trending the wrong direction lately, and I'm even a little bit concerned about their offense because of how much of the load is on quarterback Jalen Hurts to run the ball. Baylor is one of the smartest, most physical defensive teams in the Big 12 and will try to get Oklahoma in a lot of third-and-long situations where Hurts has to make accurate passes. The Sooners are going to score some points, but I am not sure their margin for error is that big given their defensive injuries. As shaky as some of Baylor's wins have been -- they've won five one-possession games this season -- I think they ride a crazy home atmosphere and win convincingly over an Oklahoma team that seems to be running on fumes.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Bold predictions for Week 12 in college football

Related slideshow: 2019 college football season (Provided by imagn)

LSU Tigers head coach Ed Orgeron celebrates midfield with his players following the Tigers 46-41win over the Alabama Crimson Tide at Bryant-Denny Stadium on November 9, 2019. 

No. 20 Iowa knocks Nebraska out of bowl consideration with last-second field goal .
Keith Duncan kicked a field goal with one second left to lift No. 20 Iowa past Nebraska and end the bowl hopes of the Cornhuskers.Some call it a rivalry; others say it doesn’t have the historical oomph. Clarity is hard to find on Black Friday.

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