Fearless Rick's 2016 College Football Picks - Week 9 early games

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WEEK 9 NCAA Football Picks

All times Eastern

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Week 8 Results: Coin: 68 Rick: 4-10
Cumulative: Coin: 48-58-3 Rick: 55-51-3

Thursday, October 27

7:00 pm Virginia Tech (-3 1/2, 56 1/2) at Pittsburgh - Tech plays on Thursday night for the second week in a row, after topping Miami last week, 37-16, but this game is on the road where the Hokies are 1-1. At 5-2 the Hokies are ranked #25 in the AP and Coaches polls.

Also at 5-2 are the Panthers, and they're at home riding a three-game win streak. Pitt is a touch cookie at home, where they are 4-0 this season and they are not to be toyed with. Their two losses were on the road, to Oklahoma State, 45-38, and North Carolina, 37-36, so they are a respectable team, albeit not one of the better defenses in the ACC. This being a toss-up game, Pitt with points might be a good strategy.

Coin Flip: Pittsburgh

Rick's Prediction: Panthers 38 Hokies 34

Friday, October 28

7:00 pm Navy at South Florida (-6 1/2, 63 1/2) - The 5-1 Midshipmen are ranked #22 in both polls, but are severe underdogs at the Bulls, who were upended by Temple last week, 46-30, dropping them to 6-2, so it's something of a shock to see them nearly a touchdown favorite.

Additionally, Navy beat South Florida last season, 29-17, so this qualifies as a revenge game for the Southerners. Still, Navy beat Houston and Memphis back-to-back heading into this, so there's reason to be skeptical about the Bulls' favoritism. Navy is 4th in the nation in rushing yards, at a hearty 293.2 per game. The Bulls will not keep them contained.

Coin Flip: Navy

Rick's Prediction: Midshipmen 40 Bulls 31

Saturday, October 29

12:00 pm Michigan (-23 1/2, 54) at Michigan State - In years past, this was a premiere Big Ten meeting, but the Spartans have fallen on some very lean times, checking in at a dismal 2-5, all five losses coming in a row, the most recent being a 28-17 defeat at Maryland last Saturday.

Michigan is a 7-0 powerhouse, ranked #2 in the country. Their only close call was a 14-7 win over Wisconsin. The Wolverines lead the nation in scoring defense at a downright stingy 10 points per game. In their three most recent wins, they've allowed 15 points while scoring 133. There's no margin for error for the Spartans. Toss out any quaint notions of State getting up for this big game. They're outmanned.

Coin Flip: Michigan State

Rick's Prediction: Wolverines 45 Spartans 10

12:00 pm West Virginia (-4, 65) at Oklahoma State - The Cowboys are in for a rude visitor in the 6-0 Mountaineers who hammered Texas Tech, 48-17, and made a shambles of TCU, winning 34-10, in the past two weeks.

The Cowboys are 5-2, riding a three-game win streak, but they'll be hard-pressed to score on West Virginia repeatedly. The Mountaineers allow just 17.9 points per game, which is darn good in the Big 12.

Coin Flip: West Virginia

Rick's Prediction: Mountaineers 34 Cowboys 24

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