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College Football Week 5 Picks, DFS Plays & Podcast: Home underdogs look to make noise

Somebody’s going down. The question is who.

NCAA Football: Colorado at Oregon Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

From a weekend that provide us with the pinnacle of college football teams going head-to-head to one that may provide us college football at its best.

Look, I greatly enjoyed last week’s clash of the titans. How can you not get excited for six ranked matchups plus a top 5 Florida State slaying their boogeyman at Clemson? It’s awesome!

But where college football really stands apart from the NFL is in the upset.

Normally, there’s no better time for an upset than with some home underdogs and, as Deion Sanders’s hoodie says in the picture, this week, they ain’t hard to find.

Deion and Colorado are one hosting No. 8 USC. Syracuse hosts Clemson. Auburn hosts No. 1 Georgia. Nebraska hosts No. 2 Michigan. Ole Miss hosts No. 13 LSU. Duke hosts No. 11 Notre Dame. Mississippi State hosts No. 12 Alabama. Arizona hosts No. 7 Washington.

Somebody’s going down. The question is who.

I feel pretty good about the home dogs I’m barking with this weekend because more games under the belt means more knowledge. I feel like the picture of what these teams are is starting to clear up.

That certainly helped last week as I churned out my first week above .500 after I think three consecutive right at 5-5. I finished up Week 4 at 7-3 so I’m at 23-24 to start the year. Almost caught up from that Week Zero debacle.

The ranked matchups were tough for many of you to predict especially the Colorado once as almost everybody believed in Deion’s Buffs. One person who didn’t was trojan24man. He correctly picked the Ducks (quack) and 6 other games to match me at 7-3. He’ll be our newest winner this season and we’ll be adding his name to our Digital Stanley Cup we call the Comment Section Hall of Fame.

Comment Section Hall of Fame

  • Week Zero: MexiNole and Topnole (5-2)
  • Week One: Yapo.SD and Topnole (7-3)
  • Week Two: Kylefsu02 (7-3)
  • Week Three: Kylefsu02 and Ukedadnole (7-3)
  • Week Four: trojan24man and Brian (7-3)

Could you be the next Comment Section Champion of the season? Leave your picks to the 10 games below in the comment section at the bottom of the page. You have to pick the 10 games I provided to be eligible for the Hall as those are the only ones I grab. Most correct is our winner.

On the DFS side of things, my co-host on the Sharpen the Point podcast available right here on the page, Chris Tyndall, was solid in the recommendations once again. He was heavy behind Oregon’s players and they were obviously pretty dominant. Ali and Castellanos each delivered plenty of value for their salary as well. Plus, he threw cold water on the terrible suggestions that I tried to make in DFS as my lineups were awful. (Shoutout Jimbo’s squad for ruining my DFS weekend.)

Want to get in on those picks? Check out our new accompanying podcast, Sharpen the Point, where the two of us talk more in-depth about these game picks as well as the Daily Fantasy Sports contests on DraftKings each weekend. New to DFS? We can help you understand the process and get educated before the big conference slate starts next week.

Reminder that we are just two guys with keyboards and microphones, not gambling professionals, so follow at your own risk and play responsibly.

Let’s get to the ATS and DFS picks. All lines and DFS pricing from our friends at DraftKings.

Brian’s College Football Week 2 Picks

No. 8 USC Trojans (-21.5) at Colorado Buffaloes (Noon ET, FOX)

Hello, Deion, once again! Just in case he’s reading. Last week, I felt like I couldn’t have recommended Oregon stronger and yet we had a lot of Buffaloes plus the points. Deion has a very fun program, but the muscle just wasn’t there to compete with Oregon. But could it be there for a battle with USC? The Trojans are a team many see as a soft roster. They can’t possibly have the horses upfront to run through Colorado like Oregon did right? Wrong. Colorado just doesn’t have it upfront. Even at home, they can’t possibly keep pace with this USC offense.

Brian’s Pick: USC -21.5

No. 22 Florida Gators (+1.5) at Kentucky Wildcats (Noon ET, ESPN)

I fully expected Florida to be a favorite here, but I’m pleasantly surprised to see it’s the Wildcats giving points at home. Florida has the big win against Tennessee under its belts. To me, that had more to do with Tennessee being wildly overrated than Florida really being that good. I picked against Tennessee then because I’m not buying Napier and I’m surely not picking him here.

Brian’s Pick: Kentucky -1.5

Clemson Tigers (-7.5) at Syracuse Orange (Noon ET, ABC)

What do we do with Clemson now? After the Duke loss in week one, everyone left Clemson for dead. Me included. Then last week, they gave Florida State everything they could handle and then some, pushing the Seminoles to overtime. But they really could’ve and maybe even should’ve won the game in regulation. They held the Florida State offense out the endzone for the entire second half before overtime. So maybe we wrote them off a little prematurely. Now, I ask, do they quit? At this point, Clemson is on the outside looking in of the ACC Championship Game picture with two conference losses. They need this one and really all of them going forward. Is that enough to pull them through? I’m okay if they just pack it in.

Brian’s Pick: Syracuse +7.5

No. 1 Georgia Bulldogs (-14.5) at Auburn (3:30pm ET, ABC)

A surprisingly low number for an Auburn offense that simply cannot do anything. Texas A&M really left a lot of openings for Auburn to get back into that game and Auburn could not score at all. Payton Thorne is not good and I can’t imagine Georgia is going to leave those same openings even if they struggle to score themselves. (No one tell my wife I picked against her school two weeks in a row).

Brian’s Pick: Georgia -14.5

No. 2 Michigan Wolverines (-17.5) at Nebraska Cornhuskers (3:30pm ET, FOX)

I’m still mad at Nebraska for that disgrace they put on the field in Boulder. I refuse to pick them again.

Brian’s Pick: Michigan -17.5

No. 24 Kansas Jayhawks (+16.5) at No. 3 Texas Longhorns (3:30pm ET, ABC)

That’s a big number for these Kansas Jayhawks. Jalon Daniels (not to be confused with the Jayden Daniels coming up next) is good. Like good. Texas has the Bama win so everybody loves them, but Kansas has been a pain in Texas’ side recently. Wouldn’t it be fun for them to do it one more time before the Horns head to SEC country?

Brian’s Pick: Kansas +16.5

No. 13 LSU Tigers (-2.5) at No. 20 Ole Miss Rebels (6:00pm ET, ESPN)

Not sure I could’ve been more wrong about these two teams a week ago. I thought LSU had hit their stride, but they couldn’t stop KJ Jefferson’s Razorbacks at all in the second half. I thought Ole Miss was ready to end Alabama with all the clucking Lane Kiffin was doing, but they gave less effort in the second half than LSU’s defense did. My analysis here is that the Tigers have the better quarterback, the running game is coming along and the receivers remain some of the best in the country. I’m not here for Jaxson Dart. I’m not sure he’s the best QB on that roster with former Oklahoma State quarterback Spencer Sanders hanging out.

On a personal note, my alma mater, LSU, is facing my brother-in-law’s new school, Ole Miss, for the first time (he’s a freshman in Oxford this year). I’ve known him since he was a kid when my wife and I first started dating years ago. We’re a family full of SEC grads with my wife from Auburn and sister from A&M so we’re excited to add another and it’s cool to watch him grow up and get to experience college football at its best. All that said, it’s football over family in this house. Sorry little bro.

Brian’s Pick: LSU -2.5

No. 11 Notre Dame Fighting Irish (-5.5) at No. 17 Duke Blue Devils (7:30pm ET, ABC)

Notre Dame almost left it all out on the field last Saturday against Ohio State as the Irish ended up giving up the lead on a 1-yard touchdown run on the game’s final offensive play. I say almost left it all out on the field because they actually failed to get all 11 guys on the field on either of the final two plays at the goalline. Yikes. That’ll sting. I mentioned Duke before as defeating Clemson in the opener and they haven’t slowed down since then. The Blue Devils QB Riley Leonard gets a lot of the credit, but this defense has been great as well, allowing only 7 points in three of those four games (allowed 14 in the other). Can they match what Ohio State was able to do to Sam Hartman a week ago? I think enough to cover the spread at home.

Brian’s Pick: Duke +5.5

No. 12 Alabama Crimson Tide (-14.5) at Mississippi State Bulldogs (9:00pm ET, ESPN)

Nick Saban’s Tide were dead and buried maybe a smidge too soon as they rallied a week ago to silence Lane Kiffin’s chirping. They switched back to Jalen Milroe under center and that proved much better than the two options we saw in Tampa against USF. Though, I’m not sure that’s really a long term fix. I don’t think Mississippi State is very good, but Starkville isn’t an easy place to win and Alabama doesn’t have the firepower to sprint out ahead of the Bulldogs like LSU did. Closer than the experts think.

Brian’s Pick: Mississippi State +14.5

No. 7 Washington Huskies (-18.5) at Arizona Wildcats (10:00pm ET, Pac12 Network)

If you haven’t seen Michael Penix, Jr. and this Washington offense yet, this won’t be the week you get to see them. They’ll be stashed on the Pac12 Network where about four people will be able to watch them play, but I made a promise that will celebrate #Pac12AfterDark in what will be the last season of its true essence. This offense is the best in college football right now and I don’t care to hear any debate on it.

Brian’s Pick: Washington -18.5

Chris’ College Football Daily Fantasy (DFS) Plays

Saturday DK Early Main Slate


  • Caleb Williams, USC ($10,500) — Rinse and repeat from Bo Nix last week. Williams is efficient so high yardage totals are less prone to appear but his TD upside is massive. With the USC defense being leaky, my hope is that Williams is forced to keep his foot on the gas longer than Nix was. Williams spreads it around so much that a stacking partner is not necessary. If you want to build a contrarian team spending up for RB Marshawn Lloyd and fading Williams is the proper game theory play as if Williams does not hit his potential it will be because the run game goes nuts.
  • Luke Altmyer, Illinois ($5700) — DK continues to provide us with one QB under $6k that we feel comfortable playing each week and Altmyer fits the bill. He has over 22 fantasy points in three of four games this season with the lone exception being a Penn St team that we know has a top tier defense. The matchup is as good as we could ask for against a Purdue team that has given up monster numbers to the QB position this season including 366/4 to Fresno St, 275/2 to Virginia Tech. What will boost Altmyer for me is he has sneaky rushing upside with 70 yards on the ground twice this season and Purdue has struggled with this as well allowing Tanner Mordecai 44/2 while Garrett Shrader obliterated them for 195/4 on the ground alone.


  • Ashton Jeanty, Boise State ($6,800) — Full transparency here, I try to highlight the best plays each week, but a tiebreaker for me is I want to introduce you to players who do not get as much national media attention as they should. Enter Jeanty who is another great back in a long line of Boise St runners. He began the year splitting with super senior George Holani but quickly ascended to the top of the depth chart via both his play and Holani missing time due to another injury which has plagued him for the past few years. Jeanty is a monster both on the ground and in the pass game having amassed nearly 700 all purpose yards in four games with 8 touchdowns. He has put up scores of 34.3 vs Washington, 35.2 vs UCF, 28.3 vs N Dakota, and 44.4 vs San Diego St. Play him and enjoy.
  • Daijun Edwards, Georgia ($6,000) — Injuries will be important to monitor this week as value will open up due to guys not playing, and Edwards, while a decent play no matter what, would be an even better one should Kendall Milton miss again this week. We mentioned a few weeks ago not wanting to play the UGA backfield with how by committee it was, but that looks to have been solved somewhat when Edwards returned for the South Carolina game. He has put up two straight games just north of 20 points and he should do it again here.
  • Injuries to monitor: Raheim Sanders, Arkansas — if he plays he is a good play. Jaylin Lucas, Indiana — if Josh Henderson misses then Lucas has upside as a salary saver with his pass catching ability.


  • Tyler Brown, Clemson ($4,800) — Another injury situation to monitor. If Antonio Williams misses like he did last week against FSU, Brown will be the primary slot receiver. Klubnik seemed to have good rapport with him last week when he brought in 5 catches for 84 yards. Clemson has struggled in the past playing at Syracuse so we can expect them to need to put in a full shift here.
  • Ja’Tavion Sanders, Texas ($4,700) — Much like Brock Bowers, Sanders is a tight end and one of the most talented ones in college football. He can stretch the field up the seam to generate chunk plays but also gets designed screens as an integral part of the pass game. His role is reflected by having eclipsed 110 yards in two of his last three games. Texas has scored roughly 50 points each of the past three seasons against Kansas so we have roughly 7 touchdown opportunities to take advantage of.

Odds/lines subject to change. T&Cs apply. See for details.