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Week 12 Top Upset Specials: How Will Washington Fare in First Game as an Underdog?

Six ranked teams lost in Week 11 with Oklahoma’s 45-3 collapse at the hands of UCF the biggest surprise. With Alabama, Florida State, Louisiana State and Ole Miss stepping out of conference play to face what appears to be overmatched opponents, that does limit some of the college football upset picks. However. there are options to consider.

There are four matchups between ranked teams in Week 12 with undefeated Washington playing at Oregon State, No. 1 Georgia going to Tennessee, Kansas State playing at Kansas while Arizona plays host to two-time defending Pac-12 champion Utah.

Week 12 Top Upset Specials: How Will Washington Fare in First Game as an Underdog?
Michael Penix Jr. #9 of the Washington Huskies/Ronald Martinez/Getty Images/AFP

There are seven Football Bowl Subdivision teams still holding perfect records and five come from Power-5 conferences. One of those teams with a perfect record suffered a huge loss off the field when James Madison had its appeal to become eligible to represent the Group of Five conferences in the slot in the New Year’s Six bowls denied by the NCAA.

Ranked teams were 10-13 against the college football betting lines last weekend. Will there be more surprising results to come?

When looking at our predictions for NCAA football, three of our five upset specials came through in Week 11 with Duke, Miami, and Southern California all covering as ’dogs. Colorado almost came through as well before falling to Arizona on a field goal on the final play of the game.

Michigan (+220) and Georgia (+250) lead the way in the odds of winning the national title with Alabama (+600), Ohio State (+800), Oregon (+800), Florida State (+900) and Washington (+1200) not far behind.

We have highlighted five games in Week 12 where it would be wise to keep tabs on the underdog as part of the NCAAF free picks and parlays to consider.

Michigan State Spartans (+3½) at Indiana Hoosiers

  • Saturday, Nov. 18, 12 noon ET (Big Ten Network)

This is feeling more like a Pick’em between pretty terrible Big Ten teams.

It has to be hard for Indiana fans to see former Hoosiers quarterback Michael Penix Jr. emerge into a star at Washington after topping 300 yards just five times during his time at Indiana.

The offense has not been the issue with the Hoosiers. No Big Ten team is allowing more yards per game than Indiana’s 391.1 with the eight plays of 50 yards or more part of the issue.

Michigan State is 11th in total defense and 12th in total defense but perhaps the Spartans can take advantage of a struggling Indiana defense enough times to cover.

Purdue Boilermakers at Northwestern Huskies (+125)

  • Saturday, Nov. 18, 12 noon ET (Big Ten Network)

There’s no love for a Northwestern team that needs one more win to become bowl-eligible in a season when longtime head coach Pat Fitzgerald was sent packing after some disturbing hazing allegations.

Northwestern is the underdog at home to a Purdue team that has won two Big Ten games.

Purdue did put up 604 yards of total offense in a win over Minnesota but Northwestern is coming off a win over Wisconsin.

North Carolina Tar Heels (+7) at Clemson Tigers

  • Saturday, Nov. 18, 3:30 p.m. ET (ESPN)

It’s hard to know what to expect from this Clemson team.

The Tigers have won back-to-back games against Notre Dame and Georgia Tech but still don’t look like the team that has been the dominant force in the ACC.

North Carolina has a chance to play its way into the ACC Championship Game and will rely on the strong right arm of Drake Maye, expected to be one of the top prospects in the 2024 NFL Draft.

Pass defense is a strength of this Clemson team while North Carolina has the best passing team in the ACC. We’re not ready to pick North Carolina as the outright winner, but going with the Tar Heels to cover when listed by the Vegas odds as 7-point underdogs is rather tempting.

Florida Gators (+11) at Missouri Tigers

  • Saturday, Nov. 18, 7:30 p.m. ET (ESPN)

Missouri has surprised so many people and the Tigers are coming off a dominating win over a Tennessee team that put up 128 points and 1,407 yards in the previous two meetings.

It won’t be a shocker to see Missouri let up a little heading into a matchup with Florida. The dream of reaching the SEC title game is over and the last two games between Florida and Missouri have been decided by a total of eight points.


With Florida’s final game of the regular season against undefeated Florida State, this matchup could be the one that the Gators have to win to become bowl-eligible.

Look for Missouri to win covering as an 11-point favorite, that could be a challenge.

Washington Huskies (+110) at Oregon State Beavers

  • Saturday, Nov. 18, 7:30 p.m. ET (ABC)

Washington was favored on the road against Oregon State not too long but the line has since moved to the host Beavers being favored.

The Huskies have been flirting with disaster, beating Arizona by seven points, Oregon by three points, Arizona State 15-7, Stanford 42-33, USC 52-42 and Utah 35-28.

Now comes another tough road test versus an underrated Oregon State team.

This would have been a worth upset pick regardless of which side the line fell.

This is the first time this season that Washington has been listed by our sportsbook as the underdog. It is worth a shot to go with the Huskies to remain undefeated.




Questions Of The Day

Which team is the best value bet of upsetting a high-ranked team in Week 12 of the NCAAF season?

Keep an eye on Utah, the two-time defending Pac-12 champion, being a split underdog on the road against Arizona.

Which NCAAF Week 12 upset bet is the most fun to make?

It has been entertaining seeing the line movement in the Washington-Oregon State matchup.


The odds and predictions in the article are based on the time of writing and publication. They may differ as to when the actual event takes place.

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