The Athletic has live coverage of Texas vs. Oklahoma In Week 6 of college football games.
Ari Wasserman, David Ubben and Seth Emerson preview the biggest games of Week 6 of the college football season on the podcast through Saturday. The trio discussed games and made picks versus the spread for Texas vs. Oklahoma, Kentucky at Georgia, Alabama at Texas A&M and more.
Below is an edited and condensed version of their discussion of several Week 6 games. The full episode includes discussion of Washington State at UCLA (-3.5), Michigan (-19.5) at Minnesota, LSU (-6) at Missouri, Notre Dame (-6.5) at Louisville and more.
You can listen to the full episode here.
Kentucky and Georgia (-14.5)
Emerson: Georgia, let’s go back to last year. They were afraid in Missouri. It woke them up and they didn’t have another game in the wire game until the playoffs against the only team that might be able to give them that in the game wire. Ohio State. This year I wondered if the South Carolina game would be a wake-up call. Then she had to do it more and had to come down to the wire last week against Auburn.
So, here’s what I wonder about this team now. Does he need to actually lose to reach his potential? This program has won 22 awards in a row. He continues to dig himself holes against weaker opponents. Is there a feeling within this program, or at least enough people on this team that things will always be okay?
I’ve been on this beat consistently since 2010, which means I’ve never seen Georgia lose to Kentucky. I’ve seen them lose to every other SEC team at some point, including Vanderbilt twice, with the exception of Texas A&M, who they’ve played just once since joining the league. But they always outperform Kentucky, and the reason lately is because, frankly, they’re built similarly, but Georgia has more talent. It’s like the Spider-Man meme where the two Spider-Men point at each other, except one of them is bigger and faster.
Emerson: I think Georgia is 0-4-1 against the spread this year.
open: Yes. Kentucky is 4-0 (against FBS teams).
Emerson: There’s a part of me that says this will catch up with Georgia at some point. But the part of me that says if I had to put a lot of money into this game, I’d pick Georgia to cover it.
Wasserman: The thing I’m really wondering here is are these sleepwalking games or do these symptoms indicate an illness that already exists within the program or the crime that will cause them to lose? Not because they don’t care or because they’re not boxed in, but because they probably aren’t good enough this year to remain undefeated. Is this a real idea to you or is it that when they just wake up, they’ll go back to Death Star mode?
Emerson: It certainly could be, Ari. The biggest concern about that is defense. The offense was always going to take a step back because you had a new quarterback, a new coordinator, a new left tackle. Both tackles are gone from last year, and the one that had some experience is a sore spot now, but they’ve actually been what you’d expect on offense. Carson Beck gets better through the game.
But Georgia’s defense must improve. Georgia’s formula for a three-peat was great defense and very good offense. And I thought the offense was going to get to a very good level or could get to a very good level and honestly their offense was probably better than their defense. The defense also wasn’t good at forcing turnovers.
open: I think people have gotten used to the idea that Georgia should dominate everyone. I think there’s a realization, especially with all these sales, that this is more the exception than the rule.
open: For me, I would love to cover Kentucky here. I think Devin Leary gives you enough balance. It feels like a reputation line here for people like that who didn’t care what Georgia actually did. And Kentucky is the best team they’ve played, I’d say by a wide margin. I don’t think it’s a sleepwalking thing. I think it’s a very good team that won’t beat teams despite how talented they are.
Wasserman: The fact Which this Game He is in Georgia. the fact Which They did he slept He walked during two games actually. Kentucky He is unbeaten. I no Going to Give in to the seduction this time. I Just Going to Roll with the a team Which I He thinks He is better. And if Kentucky Somehow Find a road to Wins this Game or cover this Game, then Good Owns additional discussion on whether or no Georgia Defective.
Texas (-6.5) vs. Oklahoma
open: I think this will be less than people expect. The top two teams in the Big 12 in stop rates. Oklahoma is against competent defenses, and I use that term liberally. We’re talking about SMU and Cincinnati here. It didn’t look great. They did not exceed 30 points. The Texans are more than efficient defensively. I think they can slow down Texas a bit.
There’s a chance here, Ari, that we get another win like 37-13, 37-17 at Texas. But I think Dillon Gabriel, with him out there, I think he can make enough plays, make enough plays down the field. The defense has quietly been much better than people realize. This gets a bit muddy, and isn’t as fun as some of the other Red River games we’ve seen. I think Texas wins it, but OU keeps it close.
Emerson: I don’t want to over-praise Oklahoma for being better than expected and I don’t want to praise Texas for what they did because it’s Texas and we have to see them hoist the national championship trophy before we stop making “Texas is it again” references in a sarcastic way. I’m not saying the Horns won’t or won’t win the national title, I’m just saying that based on what they did, that Alabama game sticks out for me. I guess I wouldn’t be shocked if Oklahoma wins because we don’t have enough data at this point to say whether or not these results are real. But my hard earned money will go to covering Texas.
Wasserman: Well, I gotta do it, guys. I’ve been a Texas bus driver since before the season started. And I fully realize that I probably have a personal stake in winning in Texas.
open: Ari, there’s a spot with me in the trenches on the LSU bus if you want to join us. decent. Come closer to me.
Wasserman: I already put a water bottle in there. Just wait for me. But I don’t think if Texas loses this game I’ll be in that trench. I think there’s a good chance they’ll play again in Dallas at the end of the year.
open: It’s looking that way.
Wasserman: I think we greatly underestimate Oklahoma as a football team because of our notions of what happened a year ago. And what happened a year ago in that game is Oklahoma didn’t have a fucking quarterback. They literally couldn’t play good offense. Of course that would happen.
I think this will be a lower scoring game the way you mentioned. Dave, I agree with that. I’ll hit less than that in this game (60.5). But I also think I’ll get the points. I’m not ready to go out there and say Oklahoma is going to win, but this is going to be a close game.
Alabama (-2.5) at Texas A&M
Wasserman: I live in Texas. The Aggies are pumped.
open: They should be. I’m concerned that we may have an Alabama that has figured itself out and is ready to take off. I think that world exists, but this is the best team on both lines that I think Alabama has played so far.
Wasserman: We also thought this in the Miami game. Did they fix it?
open: Kyle’s going to be rocking it, Ari, and this is the toughest environment yet for Jalen Milroe, who hasn’t really played like a very tough road game. I think the Aggies absolutely win this one.
The Aggies, I’m not convinced they are world class superior but at the end of the day, Alabama is going the route for Kyle, who would love to beat Alabama. They may be second only to Texas now as the only team A&M would love to beat more.
Wasserman: The interesting thing about this game here is that no matter what happens, there is a very compelling pillar attached to it. If Texas A&M wins the game, Alabama is officially out. If Texas A&M loses this game, the (scrap) will start again. So I’m excited to watch. I think A&M will absolutely win the game as well. I think the quarterback plays along with the below average line play when they play the deepest and best defensive line they’ve probably played all year, and the only line they’ve played that’s kind of similar is Texas, and I don’t think it’s as good as the Aggies. Give me the points.
Emerson: I had a lot of debate about why I chose either team. Then I realized that unless you’re really sure, you shouldn’t pick against Nick Saban. So I’ll go with Alabama.
Locks of the week
open: Mizzou +6 vs. LSU. Mizzou might go on to win this one outright. I think LSU is on the road, Faurot Field is not Kyle Field, but they can wake up for some games. When this place starts up, it can start. I think Mizzou fans, who had modest expectations going into the year, are starting to curse it a little. This is a game in which you can declare someone to be taken seriously.
Emerson: North Carolina -8.5 vs. Syracuse. It’s nice that Syracuse is 4-1, but they haven’t beaten any team anywhere near as good as North Carolina. Syracuse just lost by 17 at home to Clemson. The number seems really low.
Wasserman: Texas Tech -1.5 at Baylor. I think Texas Tech is better than what they presented. I just think Baylor will be out this year. Texas Tech has a good team.
(Brooke Powers Image: Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
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