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National Games of Interest (Week 9)

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Coin flipping for fun and profit

#Free Gurley
#Free Gurley
Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

You're a better person than me if you are actually managing to do anything other than frantically refresh DawgSports for news on Todd Gurley's reinstatement. But we still have a job to do, namely pick this week's National Game of Interest against the spread. While we correctly picked Kansas State last week, we were also hilariously wrong in predicting that the 'Noles would beat the Irish by at least 2 TDs. Another coinflip brings us to 7-5 on the season. We'll take a winning record any day, particularly given how terrible we've been so far in our conference picks.

This week's slate of games isn't anything special. We can't figure out why any of them might be more or less intriguing for a Dawg fan, so we'll just pick the two that Vegas thinks will be most competitive: No. 20 USC (-1) at No. 19 Utah and No. 22 West Virginia at Oklahoma State (-1).

The picks: Utah +1 and OK State -1

Rationale: People probably need to pump the brakes a little bit on the USC love. Yeah, Lane Kiffin's gone, but this year's team still lost at Boston College and at home against Arizona State. Utah might not have the same name recognition, but they're playing at home, have scored more points per game than the Trojans, and are allowing fewer points per game than the men of Troy. It makes us a little nervous that USC blew out the same Orgeon State team that the Utes needed 2 overtimes to beat last week, but we're still taking the home team in a close one.

Speaking of taking the home team, we feel pretty good about taking the Cowboys at home against the Mountaineers. West Virginia's offense scores about a TD less on the road than they do at home, and their defense allows nearly 2 TDs more away from Morgantown. We're terrified about picking the Big XII's worst pass defense against a team coached by Dana Holgorsen, but jet lag can't be good for a precision passing attack's timing.

Go Dawgs!