College football Week 13 picks: Go with USC over UCLA

USC wide receiver Amon-ra St. Brown catches a pass in front of UCLA’s Quentin Lake last season at the Rose Bowl.
(Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)

Week 13 of the college football season features plenty of compelling matchups, but which teams are poised for upsets? Here are this weekend’s picks and predictions:

No. 8 Penn State at No. 2 Ohio State: Ohio State 42-17

Both teams may be in the top 10, but Buckeyes will easily prove which is elite.

No. 21 Oklahoma State at West Virginia: West Virginia 25-24

Cowboys won’t have quarterback Spencer Sanders, so it should get weird in Morgantown.

Central Florida at Tulane: Tulane 35-31

With UCF out of the chase for a New Year’s Six bowl, Tulane will have greater focus.


Many bets are at stake with the UCLA-USC showdown, including preseason over/under bets made on each team’s “Regular Season Win” total.

No. 13 Michigan at Indiana: Michigan 28-23

The Hoosiers have played the Wolverines tough for years but will remain snake-bit.

No. 25 Southern Methodist at Navy: SMU 42-37

The winner stays alive for a league title, and SMU’s deep passing will be the difference.

Pittsburgh at Virginia Tech: Pitt 27-24

The Panthers under Pat Narduzzi play their best when they’re underdogs.


Texas at No. 14 Baylor: Baylor 34-31

Against their loathsome in-state big brother, the Bears will rise from last week’s Oklahoma collapse.

The student newspapers at UCLA and USC are collaborating on an all-football preview issue ahead of the game between the Bruins and Trojans on Saturday.

UCLA at No. 23 USC: USC 31-27

The 4-6 Bruins won’t sneak up on the 7-4 Trojans after last season’s UCLA win in the Rose Bowl.

California at Stanford: Cal 18-16

Both teams have had rotten luck, but Cal is a wee bit better and will become bowl eligible.


Tennessee at Missouri: Missouri 20-17 OT

The Volunteers apparently haven’t suffered enough and will have to beat Vanderbilt for a bowl berth.

Last week: 8-2; Season: 79-41