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Published: Oct. 1, 2014 at 05:15 p.m.

Week 6 predictions for top 10 games in college football

The SEC West race won't be decided on the first weekend of October, but the games this weekend between a number of contenders in that division will ultimately decide a favorite moving forward. Moving into the meat of the conference schedules also means a big week in the race for the first-ever College Football Playoff.

CFB 24/7 experts Gil Brandt, Bucky Brooks, Daniel Jeremiah, Bryan Fischer, Chase Goodbread and Mike Huguenin have provided their predictions for each game.

Season records entering Week 6:
Brooks: 40-10
Fischer: 39-11
Huguenin: 39-11
Goodbread: 37-13
Brandt: 36-14
Jeremiah: 34-16

» For more, go to NFL.com/CFB 24/7

10 Photos Total

  • <b>Details:</b> Saturday, 12 p.m. ET, ABC
<br><b>The skinny:</b> This is the first time these two schools will play each other. Maryland QB C.J. Brown has a sprained wrist and might not play, which would put a huge damper on the Terps' upset hopes. Backup Caleb Rowe is more of a pocket passer, and Terps WRs Stefon Diggs (above), Deon Long and Marcus Leak will test the Buckeyes' shaky secondary. Buckeyes DE Joey Bosa (above) has 2.5 sacks and needs to apply consistent pressure. Ohio State QB J.T. Barrett has 13 TD passes, but he also will need to make plays with his legs against the Terps, whose run defense has been bad.
<br><b>Game picks:</b>
<br>Brandt: Ohio State, 35-28  
<br>Brooks: Ohio State, 34-31
<br>Jeremiah: Ohio State, 28-24
<br>Fischer: Maryland, 42-38
<br>Goodbread: Ohio State, 28-13
<br>Huguenin: Ohio State, 31-21 10

    Associated Press

    10. Ohio State at Maryland

    Details: Saturday, 12 p.m. ET, ABC
    The skinny: This is the first time these two schools will play each other. Maryland QB C.J. Brown has a sprained wrist and might not play, which would put a huge damper on the Terps' upset hopes. Backup Caleb Rowe is more of a pocket passer, and Terps WRs Stefon Diggs (above), Deon Long and Marcus Leak will test the Buckeyes' shaky secondary. Buckeyes DE Joey Bosa (above) has 2.5 sacks and needs to apply consistent pressure. Ohio State QB J.T. Barrett has 13 TD passes, but he also will need to make plays with his legs against the Terps, whose run defense has been bad.
    Game picks:
    Brandt: Ohio State, 35-28
    Brooks: Ohio State, 34-31
    Jeremiah: Ohio State, 28-24
    Fischer: Maryland, 42-38
    Goodbread: Ohio State, 28-13
    Huguenin: Ohio State, 31-21

  • <b>Details:</b> Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ET, ABC
<br><b>The skinny:</b> Baylor makes the trip down I-35 to face Texas in its second Big 12 road game in as many weeks. Bryce Petty (above) has all of his wide receivers back in action this week, and will be facing a Texas team that is improving each week and a Longhorns defense that has made life difficult for some offenses. Tyrone Swoopes (above) has progressed significantly over the season as a passer, but he might need to use his legs to create more plays against a feisty Bears defense.
<br><b>Game picks:</b>
<br>Brandt: Baylor, 34-20 
<br>Brooks:  Baylor, 35-27 
<br>Jeremiah: Baylor, 45-28
<br>Fischer: Baylor, 45-20
<br>Goodbread: Baylor, 42-13
<br>Huguenin: Baylor, 45-24 9

    Associated Press

    9. Baylor at Texas

    Details: Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ET, ABC
    The skinny: Baylor makes the trip down I-35 to face Texas in its second Big 12 road game in as many weeks. Bryce Petty (above) has all of his wide receivers back in action this week, and will be facing a Texas team that is improving each week and a Longhorns defense that has made life difficult for some offenses. Tyrone Swoopes (above) has progressed significantly over the season as a passer, but he might need to use his legs to create more plays against a feisty Bears defense.
    Game picks:
    Brandt: Baylor, 34-20
    Brooks: Baylor, 35-27
    Jeremiah: Baylor, 45-28
    Fischer: Baylor, 45-20
    Goodbread: Baylor, 42-13
    Huguenin: Baylor, 45-24

  • <b>Details:</b> Saturday, 7:30 ET, FOX
<br><b>The skinny:</b> Turnovers and big plays doomed ASU last week against UCLA, but the Sun Devils will have another shot at an L.A. school as they travel to face USC on Saturday. Taylor Kelly's status for the Sun Devils is still to be determined, but no matter who's at quarterback, expect a healthy dose of all-purpose threat D.J. Foster (above). Trojans quarterback Cody Kessler (above) still hasn't thrown an interception this year, and has been the steady hand of an offense that is starting to fire on all cylinders. Last year, this game (a 62-41 win for ASU) got coach Lane Kiffin fired at USC. 
<br><b>Game picks:</b>
<br>Brandt: USC, 41-20  
<br>Brooks: USC, 27-23
<br>Jeremiah: USC, 31-28 
<br>Fischer: USC, 37-31  
<br>Goodbread: USC, 30-20 
<br>Huguenin: USC, 34-27 8

    Associated Press

    8. Arizona State at USC

    Details: Saturday, 7:30 ET, FOX
    The skinny: Turnovers and big plays doomed ASU last week against UCLA, but the Sun Devils will have another shot at an L.A. school as they travel to face USC on Saturday. Taylor Kelly's status for the Sun Devils is still to be determined, but no matter who's at quarterback, expect a healthy dose of all-purpose threat D.J. Foster (above). Trojans quarterback Cody Kessler (above) still hasn't thrown an interception this year, and has been the steady hand of an offense that is starting to fire on all cylinders. Last year, this game (a 62-41 win for ASU) got coach Lane Kiffin fired at USC.
    Game picks:
    Brandt: USC, 41-20
    Brooks: USC, 27-23
    Jeremiah: USC, 31-28
    Fischer: USC, 37-31
    Goodbread: USC, 30-20
    Huguenin: USC, 34-27

  • <b>Details:</b> Saturday, 7 p.m. ET, ESPN
<br><b>The skinny:</b> There are four terrifically athletic quarterbacks starting in the SEC this week, and two of them -- Auburn's Nick Marshall (above) and LSU freshman Brandon Harris (above) -- compete head to head here. For Harris, Jordan-Hare Stadium represents an extremely hostile environment for his first SEC start. Elsewhere, some of the top pro prospects to watch include Auburn receivers Sammie Coates and Duke Williams, LSU offensive linemen La'el Collins and Vadal Alexander, and LSU safety Jalen Mills. The visiting team has lost 10 of last 14 in the series.
<br><b>Game picks:</b>
<br>Brandt: Auburn, 34-24  
<br>Brooks: Auburn, 24-20 
<br>Jeremiah: Auburn, 31-24
<br>Fischer: Auburn, 30-17 
<br>Goodbread: Auburn, 27-17 
<br>Huguenin: Auburn, 35-23 7

    Associated Press

    7. LSU at Auburn

    Details: Saturday, 7 p.m. ET, ESPN
    The skinny: There are four terrifically athletic quarterbacks starting in the SEC this week, and two of them -- Auburn's Nick Marshall (above) and LSU freshman Brandon Harris (above) -- compete head to head here. For Harris, Jordan-Hare Stadium represents an extremely hostile environment for his first SEC start. Elsewhere, some of the top pro prospects to watch include Auburn receivers Sammie Coates and Duke Williams, LSU offensive linemen La'el Collins and Vadal Alexander, and LSU safety Jalen Mills. The visiting team has lost 10 of last 14 in the series.
    Game picks:
    Brandt: Auburn, 34-24
    Brooks: Auburn, 24-20
    Jeremiah: Auburn, 31-24
    Fischer: Auburn, 30-17
    Goodbread: Auburn, 27-17
    Huguenin: Auburn, 35-23

  • <b>Details:</b> <a target="_blank" href="http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000404619/article/marcus-mariota-oregon-falter-at-home-in-loss-to-arizona">Oregon, Mariota falter in loss to Arizona</a>
<br><b>The skinny:</b> The Ducks are out for revenge after getting roasted last year in Tucson to end any title hopes. Heisman Trophy front-runner Marcus Mariota (above) has been close to perfect behind center in the passing game, but is hoping his offensive line play makes a big jump from the last time Oregon played a game. Arizona freshman quarterback Anu Solomon (above) has put up some impressive numbers in Rich Rodriguez's system, but faces his toughest defense of the year on Thursday.
<br><b>Game picks:</b>
<br>Brandt: Oregon, 47-31  
<br>Brooks: Oregon, 41-37 
<br>Jeremiah: Oregon, 45-35  
<br>Fischer: Oregon, 59-35 
<br>Goodbread: Oregon, 49-21  
<br>Huguenin: Oregon, 45-28 6

    Associated Press

    6. Arizona 31, Oregon 24 (Thursday final)

    Details: Oregon, Mariota falter in loss to Arizona
    The skinny: The Ducks are out for revenge after getting roasted last year in Tucson to end any title hopes. Heisman Trophy front-runner Marcus Mariota (above) has been close to perfect behind center in the passing game, but is hoping his offensive line play makes a big jump from the last time Oregon played a game. Arizona freshman quarterback Anu Solomon (above) has put up some impressive numbers in Rich Rodriguez's system, but faces his toughest defense of the year on Thursday.
    Game picks:
    Brandt: Oregon, 47-31
    Brooks: Oregon, 41-37
    Jeremiah: Oregon, 45-35
    Fischer: Oregon, 59-35
    Goodbread: Oregon, 49-21
    Huguenin: Oregon, 45-28

  • <b>Details:</b> Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ET, FOX
<br><b>The skinny:</b> Gary Patterson and the Horned Frogs have given Oklahoma trouble in the past, and they're hoping to repeat some defensive success at home with a top-five Sooners team. Trevor Knight (above) and the OU offense have been close to unstoppable, however, thanks to a strong running game and a developing group of wideouts. TCU's Trevone Boykin (above) has settled in as the starter in the team's new-look offense and made plenty of plays so far this season, but he faces a top-flight Sooners defense this week.
<br><b>Game picks:</b>
<br>Brandt: Oklahoma, 24-23  
<br>Brooks: Oklahoma, 35-28   
<br>Jeremiah: Oklahoma, 38-24 
<br>Fischer: Oklahoma, 28-10
<br>Goodbread: Oklahoma, 35-20 
<br>Huguenin: Oklahoma, 27-20 5

    Associated Press

    5. Oklahoma at TCU

    Details: Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ET, FOX
    The skinny: Gary Patterson and the Horned Frogs have given Oklahoma trouble in the past, and they're hoping to repeat some defensive success at home with a top-five Sooners team. Trevor Knight (above) and the OU offense have been close to unstoppable, however, thanks to a strong running game and a developing group of wideouts. TCU's Trevone Boykin (above) has settled in as the starter in the team's new-look offense and made plenty of plays so far this season, but he faces a top-flight Sooners defense this week.
    Game picks:
    Brandt: Oklahoma, 24-23
    Brooks: Oklahoma, 35-28
    Jeremiah: Oklahoma, 38-24
    Fischer: Oklahoma, 28-10
    Goodbread: Oklahoma, 35-20
    Huguenin: Oklahoma, 27-20

  • <b>Details:</b> Saturday, 8 p.m. ET, ABC
<br><b>The skinny:</b> This might be the Big Ten's most important regular-season game. Huskers TB Ameer Abdullah (above) has been tremendous; he has had three 200-yard games already and leads the nation in all-purpose yards (1,060, more than 200 more than anyone else). Nebraska DE Randy Gregory leads the Big Ten with 4.5 sacks, and he'll need to pressure Michigan State QB Connor Cook (above). Michigan State needs DE Shilique Calhoun to play well; he has performed unevenly thus far. Nebraska's secondary can be exploited, which is good news for Michigan State WR Tony Lippett (league-leading six TD catches). Nebraska is 2-0 all time at Michigan State.
<br><b>Game picks:</b>
<br>Brandt: Michigan State, 35-27 
<br>Brooks: Michigan State, 21-17
<br>Jeremiah: Michigan State, 42-30
<br>Fischer: Michigan State, 31-21 
<br>Goodbread: Michigan State, 40-24 
<br>Huguenin: Michigan State, 28-24 4

    Associated Press

    4. Nebraska at Michigan State

    Details: Saturday, 8 p.m. ET, ABC
    The skinny: This might be the Big Ten's most important regular-season game. Huskers TB Ameer Abdullah (above) has been tremendous; he has had three 200-yard games already and leads the nation in all-purpose yards (1,060, more than 200 more than anyone else). Nebraska DE Randy Gregory leads the Big Ten with 4.5 sacks, and he'll need to pressure Michigan State QB Connor Cook (above). Michigan State needs DE Shilique Calhoun to play well; he has performed unevenly thus far. Nebraska's secondary can be exploited, which is good news for Michigan State WR Tony Lippett (league-leading six TD catches). Nebraska is 2-0 all time at Michigan State.
    Game picks:
    Brandt: Michigan State, 35-27
    Brooks: Michigan State, 21-17
    Jeremiah: Michigan State, 42-30
    Fischer: Michigan State, 31-21
    Goodbread: Michigan State, 40-24
    Huguenin: Michigan State, 28-24

  • <b>Details:</b> Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ET, CBS
<br><b>The skinny:</b> Alabama visits Oxford to face the most talented and athletic Ole Miss team in many years. Quarterback Bo Wallace will be surrounded by a top-shelf receiver to throw to in Laquon Treadwell, an elite talent protecting his blind side in left tackle Laremy Tunsil (above), and a matchup nightmare in slot tight end Evan Engram. Linebacker Xzavier Dickson (above) and the Alabama defense could have their hands full. The Rebels' defense, meanwhile, will combat star Alabama receiver Amari Cooper with the most talented secondary in the SEC. The Crimson Tide rushing attack, however, is plenty good enough to move the chains on Ole Miss. That could neutralize not only Ole Miss' stellar secondary, but the home crowd, as well.
<br><b>Game picks:</b>
<br>Brandt: Alabama, 28-20  
<br>Brooks: Alabama, 27-20   
<br>Jeremiah: Alabama, 31-24
<br>Fischer: Alabama, 38-24 
<br>Goodbread: Alabama, 31-27 
<br>Huguenin: Alabama, 24-20 3

    USA TODAY/Associated Press

    3. Alabama at Ole Miss

    Details: Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ET, CBS
    The skinny: Alabama visits Oxford to face the most talented and athletic Ole Miss team in many years. Quarterback Bo Wallace will be surrounded by a top-shelf receiver to throw to in Laquon Treadwell, an elite talent protecting his blind side in left tackle Laremy Tunsil (above), and a matchup nightmare in slot tight end Evan Engram. Linebacker Xzavier Dickson (above) and the Alabama defense could have their hands full. The Rebels' defense, meanwhile, will combat star Alabama receiver Amari Cooper with the most talented secondary in the SEC. The Crimson Tide rushing attack, however, is plenty good enough to move the chains on Ole Miss. That could neutralize not only Ole Miss' stellar secondary, but the home crowd, as well.
    Game picks:
    Brandt: Alabama, 28-20
    Brooks: Alabama, 27-20
    Jeremiah: Alabama, 31-24
    Fischer: Alabama, 38-24
    Goodbread: Alabama, 31-27
    Huguenin: Alabama, 24-20

  • <b>Details:</b> Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ET, NBC
<br><b>The skinny:</b> The Irish are 4-0, but the opposition gets tougher this week. Stanford remains all about the run on offense, and the defense has been stifling (just 26 points allowed). CB Wayne Lyons (above) heads a high-performing secondary that has allowed just one TD pass. Irish QB Everett Golson (above) has accounted for 15 TDs, including 11 in the air, and he certainly will test Stanford's defense. OLB Jaylon Smith leads an Irish defense that has allowed just one rushing TD. Stanford has won four of the past five in this series, which has been played annually since 1998.
<br><b>Game picks:</b>
<br>Brandt: Notre Dame, 20-13 
<br>Brooks: Notre Dame, 20-17 
<br>Jeremiah: Notre Dame, 13-10   
<br>Fischer: Stanford, 17-14  
<br>Goodbread: Notre Dame, 27-17   
<br>Huguenin: Stanford, 21-17 2

    Associated Press

    2. Stanford at Notre Dame

    Details: Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ET, NBC
    The skinny: The Irish are 4-0, but the opposition gets tougher this week. Stanford remains all about the run on offense, and the defense has been stifling (just 26 points allowed). CB Wayne Lyons (above) heads a high-performing secondary that has allowed just one TD pass. Irish QB Everett Golson (above) has accounted for 15 TDs, including 11 in the air, and he certainly will test Stanford's defense. OLB Jaylon Smith leads an Irish defense that has allowed just one rushing TD. Stanford has won four of the past five in this series, which has been played annually since 1998.
    Game picks:
    Brandt: Notre Dame, 20-13
    Brooks: Notre Dame, 20-17
    Jeremiah: Notre Dame, 13-10
    Fischer: Stanford, 17-14
    Goodbread: Notre Dame, 27-17
    Huguenin: Stanford, 21-17

  • <b>Details:</b> Saturday, 12 p.m. ET, ESPN
<br><b>The skinny:</b> As impressive as Aggies quarterback Kenny Hill has been, give the Bulldogs the quarterback edge at home with dual-threat star Dak Prescott. But the game will be won or lost in the battle between Texas A&M's vaunted offensive line and Mississippi State's impressive defensive front. With potential first-round draft prospect Cedric Ogbuehi (above) at left tackle and veterans across the line, TAMU's line has met big expectations. Thanks largely to the emergence of defensive end Preston Smith (above) and the SEC's top linebacker in Benardrick McKinney, MSU's ability to control the line of scrimmage has been far better than most anticipated.
<br><b>Game picks:</b>
<br>Brandt: Mississippi State, 34-20
<br>Brooks: Texas A&M, 35-28
<br>Jeremiah: Mississippi State, 42-34 
<br>Fischer: Texas A&M, 35-28  
<br>Goodbread: Texas A&M, 38-31 
<br>Huguenin: Texas A&M, 30-28 1

    Associated Press/USA TODAY

    1. Texas A&M at Mississippi State

    Details: Saturday, 12 p.m. ET, ESPN
    The skinny: As impressive as Aggies quarterback Kenny Hill has been, give the Bulldogs the quarterback edge at home with dual-threat star Dak Prescott. But the game will be won or lost in the battle between Texas A&M's vaunted offensive line and Mississippi State's impressive defensive front. With potential first-round draft prospect Cedric Ogbuehi (above) at left tackle and veterans across the line, TAMU's line has met big expectations. Thanks largely to the emergence of defensive end Preston Smith (above) and the SEC's top linebacker in Benardrick McKinney, MSU's ability to control the line of scrimmage has been far better than most anticipated.
    Game picks:
    Brandt: Mississippi State, 34-20
    Brooks: Texas A&M, 35-28
    Jeremiah: Mississippi State, 42-34
    Fischer: Texas A&M, 35-28
    Goodbread: Texas A&M, 38-31
    Huguenin: Texas A&M, 30-28