3 Up 3 Down (College Week 10)

By John Ewing Director of Research and Analytics @johnewing
College Football Review – Week 10



A review of the week that was with a look at three college football teams that stood out for good reasons and three whose weekends did not turn out as successfully as anticipated.

Three Up

Clemson Tigers
2015 Record: Straight-Up 9-0, Against-the-Spread 5-4

Clemson overcame a halftime deficit (they were always the projected favorite) to beat Florida State 23-13. The win assures the Tigers of a spot in the ACC Championship game (first appearance since 2011).

Quarterback Deshaun Watson racked up 404 yards of total offense including 100 yards on the ground. Clemson had two 100-yard rushers and a 100-yard receiver in the game. The Tiger's playoff hopes are more than alive as the team finishes with three opponents with losing records.

Clemson keeps winning and Dabo Swinney keeps dancing.



Next Up: Syracuse

Trends
The total has gone over in four of Clemson's last five games.
The total has gone over in eight of Syracuse's last nine games.

Alabama Crimson Tide
2015 Record: Straight-Up 8-1, Against-the-Spread 4-5

Derrick Henry stole Leonard Fournette's thunder. Alabama's junior running back carried the rock for 210 yards and three touchdowns. The Crimson Tide's defense held Fournette to 31 yards on 19 carries – he had at least 150 yards rushing in each of LSU's first seven games.

Bama's 30-16 win over LSU, plus a loss by Ole Miss, gives the Tide control of their own destiny in the SEC. Some questioned whether Nick Saban's squad should have been included in the first College Football Playoff rankings but the sound defeat of the Tigers erases any doubt.

With a Heisman candidate at running back and a dominant defense, Alabama looks like the No. 1 team in the country.

Next Up: Mississippi State

Trends
Alabama has won five straight against Mississippi State.
The total has gone under in seven of the Bulldogs' last eight games against Alabama.

Oklahoma State
2015 Record: Straight-Up 9-0, Against-the-Spread 6-3

The Cowboys felt slighted by their place in the first College Football Playoff rankings of the season. Five teams with one loss were ahead of undefeated Oklahoma State, but their thrashing of previously unbeaten TCU will change all of that.

Mason Rudolph threw for 352 yards and five touchdowns and the Cowboys defense forced four turnovers in a 49-29 beat down of the Horned Frogs. Oklahoma State still has work to do (home games against Baylor and Oklahoma) but if the Cowboys win out and capture the Big 12 championship, they would have a strong case for a spot in the College Football Playoff.

Next Up: Iowa State

Trends
The total has gone under in four of Oklahoma State's last five game against Iowa State.
Iowa State is 1-5 against-the-spread in its last six games against Oklahoma State.

Three Down



Michigan State Spartans
2015 Record: Straight-Up 8-1, Against-the-Spread 2-7

Michigan State fell to Nebraska 39-38 after giving up a game-winning 91-yard drive in the final minute of the game.



The Spartans were 96 percent likely to win before Nebraska's drive started. The Cornhuskers' 30-yard touchdown with 17 seconds left didn't come without controversy. Receiver Brandon Reilly appeared to go out of bounds on his own before coming back in the field of play to make the catch. Officials reviewed the play and determined that Reilly was forced out of bounds.

The play stood and Michigan State's perfect season was ended.

Next Up: Maryland

Trends
Michigan State is 1-4 against-the-spread in its last five home games.
Maryland is 1-4 straight-up in its last five games on the road.

Memphis Tigers
2015 Record: Straight-Up 8-1,, Against-the-Spread 4-4-1

Any chance of participating in the four-team playoff is gone. Navy upset Memphis in an embarrassing 45-20 loss. The Midshipmen ran all over the Tigers. Eight different players for Navy rushed the ball totaling 374 yards as a team on the ground.

Turnovers were part of the problem for Memphis. The Tigers gave the ball away three times including an interception with 17 seconds to play in the first half. The pick led to a field goal by Navy and made the Midshipmen the projected favorites for the first time in the game.

Memphis needs to rebound quickly. The Tigers now trail Houston and Navy in the West division of the American Athletic Conference. The playoff is out of reach but a New Year's Six bowl is still in play.

Next Up: Houston

Trends
Memphis has won five straight games on the road.
Houston has won five straight games at home.

Ole Miss Rebels
2015 Record: Straight-Up 7-3, Against-the-Spread 4-6

Ole Miss lost its third game of the season to Arkansas 53-52 in overtime. This will be a hard loss to get over as two plays in the extra session doomed the Rebels.

First, Ole Miss was 99 percent likely to win when they forced Arkansas into a 4th-and-25 play. The Razorbacks converted the down with a crazy lateral play.



A few plays later, after Arkansas scored a touchdown, Bret Bielema decided to go for two to win the game. The first attempt was unsuccessful but Ole Miss was called for a face mask penalty that gave the Razorbacks another attempt.

On the next play quarterback Brandon Allen ran it in for the win.



It was a wild game, to say the least.

Next Up: LSU

Trends
Ole Miss is 20-10 against-the-spread in the last five years at home.
LSU is 3-5 against-the-spread in its last eight road SEC games.