3 Up 3 Down (College Week 12)

By John Ewing Director of Research and Analytics @johnewing
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

Alabama Crimson Tide

2014 Record: Straight-Up 9-1, Against-the-Spread 3-7

Alabama knocked Mississippi State from the ranks of the unbeaten and possibly out of the College Football Playoff with a 25-20 victory.

The Crimson Tide defense bent (allowed 428 yards of offense) but did not break. In six trips into the red zone, Mississippi State settled for two field goals and Dak Prescott was intercepted twice.

Alabama “upset” No. 1 Mississippi State but the Tide were 9.5 point favorites at kickoff. According to the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook, the Bulldogs were the second biggest underdogs as a No. 1 team in the last 30 years.

Next Up: Western Carolina

Trends
Western Carolina is 4-1-1 against-the-spread in its last six games.
Alabama is 1-4-1 against-the-spread in its last six games.

Florida State Seminoles

2014 Record: Straight-Up 10-0, Against-the-Spread 3-7

Once again, Florida State found a way to win. The Noles trailed Miami 16-0 (giving them less than a 30 percent chance to win) in the first half but rallied for a 30-26 victory. This is the third win this season for the Noles after trailing by 15 or more points, the most in the FBS.

Florida State extended its school and ACC record to 26 straight wins. The Seminoles have now beat Miami in five straight games.

FSU slipped to No. 3 in the College Football Playoff rankings before Saturday's game. Will another shaky performance against an unranked team drop the defending champions further in the rankings?

Next Up: Boston College

Trends
The total has gone under in four of Boston College's last six games.
Florida State is 2-4 ATS in its last six games when playing Boston College.

Wisconsin Badgers

2014 Record: Straight-Up 8-2, Against-the-Spread 5-5

Here was our analysis before the Wisconsin/Nebraska game:

Wisconsin wins 63 percent of the time, by an average projected score of 32-23. The Badgers have a major matchup advantage in this game. Wisconsin is No. 1 in offensive rushing efficiency (averages 326 rushing yards per game). Nebraska is 59th in defensive rushing efficiency.

Melvin Gordon broke LaDainian Tomlinson's single game rushing record with 408 yards. Gordon had six rushes that went at least 35 yards. The Badgers overcame three early turnovers to thump Nebraska 59-24.

The Cornhuskers continue to struggle on the road against ranked opponents having lost five of their last six games.

Next Up: Iowa

Trends
Wisconsin has won four of its last six games against Iowa.
Iowa is 2-5 against-the-spread in its last seven home games.

Three Down



TCU Horned Frogs

2014 Record: Straight-Up 9-1, Against-the-Spread 8-2

TCU trailed Kansas, a team they were favored over by four touchdowns, 27-17 in the third quarter. The Horned Frogs scored two touchdowns in less than two minutes to propel them to a 34-30 victory.

Baylor or TCU, which team is more deserving of a spot in the College Football Playoff? The committee ranked the Horned Frogs ahead of the Bears even though Baylor beat TCU 61-58 last month.

Baylor now holds the head-to-head advantage and has been decisively better in games against common opponents. Baylor beat Kansas 60-14 and Oklahoma 48-14. TCU beat Kansas 34-30 and Oklahoma 37-33.

Will Saturday's closer than expected win in Lawrence be enough for Baylor to jump TCU in next week's College Football Playoff rankings?

Next Up: Texas

Trends
The total has gone over in six of TCU's last eight games.
The total has gone under in nine of Texas' last 11 games at home.

Auburn Tigers

2014 Record: Straight-Up 7-3, Against-the-Spread 4-6

Todd Gurley and Nick Chubb combined to rush for 282 yards and three touchdowns as Georgia routed Auburn 34-7. The Tigers committed three turnovers and were held to less than 300 yards of offense for the first time since the 2012 Iron Bowl.

Saturday's loss has knocked Auburn from the SEC West title race. This marks the sixteenth year in a row that the SEC won't have a repeat champion. The last two-time defending SEC champion was Tennessee in 1997 and 1998.

Georgia has finished its conference schedule and will cheer for Missouri to lose one of its last two games. If Missouri loses on the road in Tennessee or at home against Arkansas, the Bulldogs will represent the SEC East in the conference title game.

Next Up: Samford

Trends
Samford is 1-14 straight-up in its last 15 road games.
Auburn is 15-1 straight-up in its last 16 home games.

Duke Blue Devils

2014 Record: Straight-Up 8-2, Against-the-Spread 7-3

Virginia Tech rallied in the second half to upset Duke 17-16 Saturday. The Hokies, who are at the bottom of the Coastal Division in the ACC, now have two road victories over ranked opponents this year (they beat Ohio State 35-21).

Turnovers were Duke's undoing. Coming into the game the Blue Devils had only given away the ball six times in nine games. With three turnovers against Virginia Tech the Blue Devils now have six turnovers in its two losses (they had three turnovers against Miami) and just three giveaways in eight victories.

The loss knocked Duke out of the stop spot in the ACC Coastal Division, the Blue Devils are now a game behind Georgia Tech.

Next Up: North Carolina

Trends
North Carolina is 5-11 against-the-spread in its last 16 road games.
Duke is 1-8 straight-up in its last nine games when playing UNC at home.