Upcoming Match-ups

College Football Week 12 Upset Picks: Auburn and Minnesota Have Value

Auburn Tigers at Jordan-Hare Stadium
Auburn is a dangerous three-point home underdog against Georgia in Week 12. Can the Tigers pull off the upset? Photo by Fds527 (Wiki Commons) [CC License]
  • There are two games with good upset potential in Week 12
  • Auburn and Minnesota are dangerous underdogs
  • Find my two favorite upset picks for Week 12, below

Week 12 has two games with strong upset potential.

Auburn has played well against top teams this season and are a home underdog vs Georgia. Minnesota, meanwhile, has yet to lose a game this season and are listed as small road underdogs at Iowa.

Here are my two upsets picks for Week 12. Both games take place on Saturday, November 16.

Georgia vs Auburn Odds

Team Spread at Bovada Moneyline Total
Georgia (#4) +3.0 (-110) -140 O 40.5 (-110)
Auburn (#12) -3.0 (-110) +120 U 40.5 (-110)

All odds taken Nov. 13.

No. 12 Auburn is listed as 3-point home underdogs vs No. 14 Georgia on Saturday. The Bulldogs are coming off a 27-0 victory over Missouri, while Auburn had a bye week after beating Ole Miss 20-14 in Week 10.

Georgia has a slight advantage on both offense and defense, but the Tigers have the tools to pull off the upset.

Auburn Is Proven Against Ranked Teams

The 7-2 Tigers have proven they can compete with the best teams. Auburn beat ranked Oregon and Texas A&M teams early in the season and later suffered close losses on the road to Florida and LSU.

In Auburn’s 23-20 setback to No. 1 LSU, they held the lead late in the third quarter and sacked Heisman favorite Joe Burrow three times. Auburn rushed for a TD in that game and are tied for the SEC lead with 23 rushing TDs. Georgia has yet to allow a rushing TD, and Auburn is capable of breaking through and ending that streak.

Georgia has already suffered an upset loss at the hands of South Carolina and have been inconsistent offensively. They’ve been held under 30 points in four straight weeks and now have to face a stout Auburn defense that ranks 28th nationally.

Auburn Coming Off Bye Week

Not only does Auburn have home-field advantage in this game, but they also have a rest advantage. The Tigers are 9-0 in games following a bye week under head coach Gus Malzahn.

Auburn has had two weeks to prepare for Georgia and are 4-1 against the Bulldogs coming off a bye. Another benefit of the bye week is that RB JaTarvious Whitlow (knee) and DL Marlon Davidson (back) have had more time to heal and are questionable to play Saturday. 

Georgia’s defense is one of the best in the country, but Auburn has proven they can score against top defensive teams such as Oregon and LSU. Freshman QB Bo Nix is coming off an impressive showing against Mississippi in which he passed for a career-high 340 yards. He’s generally been much better at home than on the road this year.

UGA’s Jake Fromm has been inconsistent lately and completed just 44.8% of his passes last time out against Missouri. You don’t really know what you’re going to get with Georgia each week, while Auburn has played well in every game this season.

Pick: Auburn (+120)

Iowa vs Minnesota Odds

Team Spread at Bovada Moneyline Total
Minnesota (#8) +3.0 (-115) +125 O 44.0 (-110)
Iowa (#20) -3.0 (-105) -145 U 44.0 (-110)

Minnesota’s incredible undefeated season continued in Week 11 when the Golden Gophers upset Penn State by a 31-26 score. Minnesota had previously been receiving criticism for having an easy schedule, but they silenced their doubters by turning in a great showing against one of the best defenses in the country.

The 6-3 Iowa Hawkeyes are listed as three-point favorites vs the Gophers. Oddsmakers have likely taken into account the electric atmosphere at Iowa City and the fact that Iowa has won four straight games against Minnesota.

Tanner Morgan’s Impact

You may not hear his name as much as you hear Joe Burrow or Jalen Hurts, but Tanner Morgan is having a fantastic season at QB for the Golden Gophers. Morgan passed for 339 yards and three touchdowns against Penn State’s fifth-ranked defense and ranks fourth in the nation with a 191.0 pass efficiency rating.

Morgan has only thrown four interceptions this season and has been protected well by Minnesota’s offensive line. Iowa starting QB Nate Stanley has been less effective than Morgan and has only completed 60.7% of his passes.

Considering both teams are strong defensively, Morgan’s great chemistry with talented receivers Rashod Bateman and Tyler Johnson gives Minnesota the advantage.

Golden Gophers Clutch In Close Games

Minnesota has a clutch their ability to prevail in tight games. The Golden Gophers have won five games this season by a touchdown or less, while Iowa’s three losses (Penn State, Michigan and Wisconsin) were one possession games.

Morgan isn’t cracking in high pressure situations and the Golden Gophers are making big plays to win games. They lead the Big 10 with 14 interceptions and will create trouble for an Iowa QB struggling with his accuracy. Gophers coach P. J. Fleck has his team turning in complete efforts and eyeing a conference title, while Iowa doesn’t have nearly as much to play for.

The Golden Gophers have scored 31 points or more in their last eight games. They have a great dual-threat offense led by Morgan that is capable of overwhelming another good defensive team. Ride the wave and take Minnesota on the moneyline for the best value.

Pick: Minnesota (+125)

Author Image
Discussion

Let's have fun and keep it civil.