The college football calendar progresses into Week 7 with teams going deeper into the season and therefore fighting the combination of physical and mental challenges that accumulate when the number of games rises and the weather changes. Players can’t wander in their focus and concentration even though the routines and rhythms of the season continues and the stakes of the games get bigger. Let’s look at three specific trap-game situations that could impact your college football picks.
UCLA Bruins at Washington Huskies
Odds: Washington -2
The UCLA Bruins are underdogs, though they might be favored at kickoff time later in the week. However, they certainly have a good chance to win this game. What could be a problem is, that a week later, they play host to Oregon in what will be a reunion of the Ducks and head coach Chip Kelly. UCLA has been looking forward to that Oregon game for several weeks, ever since the Ducks won at Ohio State and made themselves a national target for other Pac-12 teams. UCLA has to focus on the matter at hand against a Washington team that is 2-3. The Bruins have played mediocre football the past few weeks, getting blown out at home by Arizona State before scoring a sloppy victory against Arizona. They need to play at a higher level in Seattle against a Washington team that is coming off a week of rest and will have had two weeks to game-plan for this contest.
Iowa State Cyclones at Kansas State Wildcats
Odds: Iowa State -6½
The Iowa State-Kansas State game is usually very close, but Iowa State might still be tempted to look ahead one week to a game against Oklahoma State, which, along with Oklahoma, is currently unbeaten and at the top of the Big 12 Conference standings. Iowa State has had trouble against Oklahoma State and certainly looked at that game before the season as one of its bigger matchups. Iowa State can’t get too excited in the process of thinking about the big game against Oklahoma State. It needs to remain locked in on Kansas State and allow Oklahoma State to wait. This is very much in line with the nature of a trap game. Iowa State, which has already struggled this season, can’t afford big slip-ups, or slip-ups of any kind, for that matter.
Pittsburgh Panthers at Virginia Tech Hokies
Odds: Pittsburgh -4½
The Pittsburgh Panthers have a really good chance to win the ACC Coastal Division, but one week after visiting Virginia Tech, they play the Clemson Tigers. Everyone knows that Clemson has already lost two games and is extremely vulnerable in the Atlantic Coast Conference. Pittsburgh would love to be the team that fully finishes off Clemson and ruins the Tigers’ hopes of winning anything important – division, conference, College Football Playoff, the whole thing. Pittsburgh can’t look ahead to Clemson, though. It first needs to handle Virginia Tech in Blacksburg. Careful laying the points if you bet online.