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Indiana gets big chance; FSU takes big fall

By Ralph D. Russo

The Associated Press

Indiana will play at Ohio State, and Clemson will visit Florida State on Saturday.

One of these games is a matchup of ranked teams that will go a long way toward deciding a division title. The other carries a 35-point spread.

As three-time national champion Florida State limps toward its worst season in 45 years, No. 9 Indiana will try to pull off the biggest upset of the season against No. 3 Ohio State.

The Hoosiers are in the midst of what could be their best season since 1967, the last time they went to the Rose Bowl. That 1968 New Year’s Day game against No. 1 USC was also the only time Indiana football has ever played in a game matching two top-10 teams.

Meanwhile, Florida State’s fall has turned what for years was the Atlantic Coast Conference’s biggest game into mismatch.

For six straight seasons (2011-16), Clemson and Florida State played with both in the Top 25. Each time, the winner went on to win the Atlantic Division and then the conference championship.

The last three seasons, the Seminoles haven’t stood a chance, losing by an average of 32 points.

The good news for Florida State is that basketball season starts next week and the Seminoles, who finished No. 4 in the tournament-less last season, are No. 21 in the preseason poll.

Indiana hoops is unranked. Strange year.

The picks:

Kentucky (+31) at No. 1 Alabama: Wildcats play slow on offense and limit big plays on defense so maybe they can stay within shouting distance for a while … Alabama, 38-13.

No. 9 Indiana (+20¢) at No. 3 Ohio State: Hoosiers have already snapped a 24-game losing streak to Michigan. They have lost 25 in a row to the Buckeyes … Ohio State, 45-21.

No. 4 Clemson (-35) at Florida State: Trevor Lawrence is back for the Tigers, trying to make up for lost time in the Heisman race … Clemson, 49-12.

No. 6 Florida (-31¢) at Vanderbilt: Seems like a game for Gators QB Kyle Trask to pad his stats, but aren’t they all these days? … Florida, 56-21.

No. 7 Cincinnati (-6¢) at UCF: Biggest test yet for the Bearcats’ stingy defense; the Knights are averaging 619 yards per game … Cincinnati, 38-35.

North Alabama (+47¢) at No. 8 BYU: Bad timing: If the Cougars had this date open, they might have been able to get a game with idle Colorado out of the Pac-12 … BYU, 63-10.

No. 10 Wisconsin (-7¢) at No. 19 Northwestern: Wildcats tend to give the Badgers fits; Or is it Fitz? … Wisconsin, 24-20.

UCLA (+13¢) at No. 11 Oregon: Coach Chip Kelly’s second visit to Eugene to face his old team; first one was a 21-point loss … Oregon, 45-24.

Mississippi State (+25) at No. 13 Georgia: There have been hints QB J.T. Daniels is ready to make his Georgia debut … Georgia, 31-7.

No. 14 Oklahoma State (+7) at No. 18 Oklahoma: They call it Bedlam but the final result tends to be predictable; Sooners have won 15 of 17 … Oklahoma, 34-29.

Appalachian State (+5¢) at No. 15 Coastal Carolina: For first place in the Sun Belt East … Appalachian State, 28-24.

Kansas State (+11) at No. 17 Iowa State: Cyclones are 5-1 in conference — any conference — for the first time … Iowa State, 30-17.

No. 20 USC (-3) at Utah: Utes have yet to play this season, but they have won three straight against the Trojans in Salt Lake City … USC, 28-21.

No. 21 Liberty (+3¢) at North Carolina State: Flames already have more ACC victories (two) than Florida State (one) … Liberty, 28-24.

Tennessee (+11) at No. 23 Auburn: Vols are guessing and hoping at quarterback right now … Auburn, 27-13.

TWITTER REQUESTS

LSU (-2¢) at Arkansas — @SurlyGabe: Razorbacks were a six-touchdown underdog to the Tigers just last year … LSU, 35-31.

San Diego State (pick) at Nevada — @GaryWCE: Mountain West contenders get the SEC’s afternoon slot on CBS after Ole Miss-No. 5 Texas A&M was postponed … Nevada, 28-24.

Washington State (+1¢) at Stanford — @jonthecoug: Cardinal looking to avoid first 0-3 start since they went 1-11 in 2006 … Stanford, 30-27.

Virginia Tech (-3) at Pittsburgh — @TK–on–the–Coast: Panthers ranked No. 1 in FBS in sacks (38) and the Hokies are tied for second (30) … Virginia Tech, 28-21.

Record

Last week: 12-4 straight; 8-8 against the spread.

Season: 108-44 straight; 71-79-1 against the spread.

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