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2023 College Football Week 10 Sleeper Picks

By Hank Blaine

Week 10 is the last time that football has the weekend all to itself from a college perspective because college basketball starts up next week already. It’s a great time of year to be a sports bettor for sure. Here are three potential upset picks around college football on Saturday.

Top 2023 College Football Week 10 Sleeper Picks

Nebraska Cornhuskers vs. Michigan State Spartans

Big Ten matchup. Nebraska heads to East Lansing as winners of three straight games and five of its last six contests. Nebraska’s three-game win streak is its first since 2016, and the Huskers just completed an unbeaten October for the first time since 2001. The win streak has Nebraska at 5-3 overall and tied for first in the Big Ten West Division with a 3-2 league record. The Huskers are one win from achieving bowl eligibility for the first time since the 2016 season. Nebraska beat Purdue 31-14 on Saturday in Lincoln. The Blackshirt defense forced three Boilermaker turnovers, while the special teams got into the scoring column by returning a blocked field goal for a touchdown in the third quarter. Nebraska limited Purdue to less than 100 yards in both rushing (96) and passing (99) in last week’s win. The defensive effort marked the first time since a 2012 win over Michigan that Nebraska held an opponent to less than 100 yards rushing and passing.

Michigan State is having a terrible year and already fired Coach Mel Tucker for off-field issues. The Spartans are 0-5 in the Big Ten and have dropped six straight. Secondary coach Harlon Barnett, who is in his 15th year overall on the Spartan coaching staff, was named acting head coach on Sept. 10. Michigan State will recognize its 2023 Senior Class on Saturday. November 4 marks the earliest calendar date Michigan State has finished its home season since Oct. 27, 1900. Saturday’s game marks the 13th meeting between Michigan State and Nebraska. The Huskers lead the series, 9-3, but the series is tied 2-2 at Spartan Stadium, including two straight wins by MSU in East Lansing (2014, 2021). The past three in the series have been decided by seven total points. This should be close as well.

2023 College Football Week 10 Pick: Michigan State

UCF Knights vs. Cincinnati Bearcats

Big 12 matchup. The first year in the Big 12 has been a disaster for both as they are each 0-5 in league play. Despite compiling at least 400 yards of total offense for the sixth time this season, UCF was not able to overcome four turnovers and the Knights fell to West Virginia, 41-28, on Saturday. UCF completed 25-of-36 passes for 274 yards, the most by the Black and Gold in a Big 12 Conference game this season, and rushed 33 times for 189 yards. John Rhys Plumlee finished the game 25-for-36 with 274 yards, including three passing touchdowns and he rushed for 45 yards with a score. Plumlee has 14 touchdowns on the ground in Black and Gold and has notched at least one in exactly half of his appearances for UCF (nine of 18). Kobe Hudson tallied 66 yards on three catches with two TDs. RJ Harvey surpassed 100 rushing yards for the third consecutive game. He became the first UCF player to accomplish the feat since Latavius Murray rushed for more than 100 yards in four consecutive games in 2012. Kicker Colton Boomer converted on all four of his PAT attempts, extending his streak to 72 for consecutive PATs made. That mark is the fifth most in program history.

In recognition of Military Appreciation Day, Cincinnati football will don special helmet decals featuring the crest of the USS Cincinnati LCS 20, a U.S. Navy ship whose namesake is Cincinnati. All-time Bearcats football great Antwan Peek headlines the 2023 Hall of Fame Class. Peek starred for the Bearcats as a defensive end from 1998 to 2002. Cincinnati rushed for 277 yards despite losing leading rushers Corey Kiner and Myles Montgomery due to injury, but fell to Oklahoma State, 45-13, last Saturday. Cincinnati is sixth nationally with 222.6 rush yards per game, up from 93rd last year at 129.7. UC has run for 200 or more yards in six of eight contests, plus 288 against Baylor and 277 at Oklahoma State in its last two outings. Kiner is up to 642 yards on the year as he seeks to become UC’s second 1,000-yard rusher of the last three years. Cincinnati is 38-6 since 2000 when rushing for 250 yards or more, with three of those coming this season. Cincinnati and UCF are tied all-time 4-4. They used to be AAC foes. A team has scored 50 points three times in eight all-time matchups in the series.

2023 College Football Week 10 Pick: Cincinnati

Utah State Aggies vs. San Diego State Aztecs

Utah State has been outscored 105-17 (-88) in the first quarter this season, but has outscored its opponents 265-167 (+98) the remainder of the game, including 113-58 (+55) in the second quarter, 72-42 (+30) in the third quarter and 80-67 (+13) in the fourth quarter. USU’s offense runs a play on average every 21.2 seconds, which ranks as the fifth-fastest tempo in the nation. Utah State’s 25 passing touchdowns this year are tied with Washington for the third-most in the nation and trailing only USC (26) and LSU (26), while its 37 total touchdowns are tied for the 15th most. The Aggies lead the Mountain West and are 21st in the nation in scoring offense at 35.2 points per game. USU is also first in the MW and 23rd in the nation in total offense (451.1 ypg), and fourth in the MW and 22nd in the nation in passing offense (287.4 ypg). Utah State and LSU are the only FBS teams that have two players with at least eight touchdown catches on the year and USU is the only FBS team that has three players with at least five touchdown catches. Junior WR Jalen Royals is tied for third in the nation with 10 touchdown catches, senior WR Terrell Vaughn is tied for 10th with eight touchdowns and junior WR Micah Davis is tied for 44th with five touchdowns.

San Diego State plays host to its annual Homecoming Game at Snapdragon Stadium. It’s just the second home game for the Aztecs since Sept. 22 after opening the season with three straight home contests and four in a 27-day span to start the year. SDSU is coming off its second idle week in the month of October. The Aztecs have won six of their last seven games when coming off an “idle” week (includes only planned idle weeks and not bowl games), including a 3-0 record under head coach Brady Hoke over that span. SDSU’s only loss in its last seven games coming off a “bye” was a 17-13 defeat to Nevada on Nov. 9, 2019. The Aztecs have won each of their last two Homecoming Games (14-10 vs. UNLV on Nov. 5, 2022 and 23-21 vs. Nevada on Nov. 13, 2021) and six of the last eight dating back to 2014. SDSU is 13-3 all-time vs. Utah State.

2023 College Football Week 10 Pick: San Diego State

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