There are four great games on the slate this week. The “experts” had visions of the future, and they are here to present their findings. Be on the lookout for a vote on the punishment for the “expert” with the worst record this season.
Overall (Last Week)
Against the Spread (ATS)
(9) Montana State (5-2) @ North Dakota (4-3) (pk) @ 11 a.m. on PlutoTV
Parker: Earlier this week, North Dakota Head Coach Kyle Schweigert said this game is the deciding factor for if North Dakota has a chance at making the playoffs. The Fighting Hawks are clearly putting a huge significance on this game. This team is 3-0 on their home field this season, and MSU Head Coach Jeff Choate remembers their last rowdy trip to Grand Forks. He said that despite the early kickoff time, the students, who sit directly behind the MSU sideline, will probably be “shotgunning beers in the parking lot” to get in the heckling mood. This may add fuel to the Cats who were left with a sour taste in their mouth after the loss before the bye week. I think MSU will come out fired up and I’m predicting the offensive line will prove its worth by rushing for over 300 yards.
MSU 38, UND 24
Caleb: First off, I’m coming in confident this week. So confident, in fact, I am letting my girlfriend make these picks, and she thinks football is a sport played with a round ball. All I’m saying is that “Poorboy Parker” and “Clown Cameron” don’t stand a chance. Coming off of a bye, hopefully the Bobcats will be fully healed and ready to get back on track. North Dakota has had a roller coaster of a season. The team is 4-3, with a few good wins and bad losses. This Hawk team needs to win out to have a resume good enough to push them into the playoffs. While the Hawks play has been up and down, I think you could say the same about the Bobcats, although a 5-2 record doesn’t necessarily show that. Heading into the back half of the season the Cats will need to earn some key wins to keep in the top-10 conversation. I think on Saturday MSU will have ironed things out and have a big win.
MSU 42, UND 24
Cameron: The ninth ranked Fighting Bobcats finally let their sloppy play get the best of them against Sac State in a homecoming loss that Cats fans will probably feel for a while. But after having two weeks to refocus, the Bobbies need to rub some dirt on it and get back to their physical ways if they hope to leave Grand Forks with a win. FCS powers Sam Houston State and UC Davis have already fallen this year in the intimidating confines of the Alerus Center where well-traveled MSU head man Jeff Choate said he has been called names that were even new to him while on the sideline. Even though UND has an improved passing offense on top of their classic, hard-nosed style of play, I’m throwing everything on the Bobcats because I just really need this win for my personal happiness.
THE Montana State University Fighting Bobcats 28, UND 24
(4) Weber State (5-2) @ (22) UC Davis (4-4) (-2.5) @ 5 p.m on PlutoTV
Parker: Weber State continues to rack up the wins. I have not had much faith in this team this year because of their offensive woes. I watched them last week get gashed by Northern Arizona senior quarterback Case Cookus in the first half only to end up running away from the Lumberjacks. I have yet to really buy into this team, but I find it hard to pick against them because they continue to prove me wrong. I’ll say that Weber State throws the last punch and leaves Davis, CA with another dub, even though I really want to pick UC Davis in this one.
Weber State 28, UC Davis 27
Caleb: At the beginning of the year this matchup looked like it was going to be a battle of the giants. Last week, Weber showed that they are what they are hyped up to be. Questions concerning their offensive power were thrown by the wayside after a 51-28 beatdown of Northern Arizona. The Aggies on the other hand, haven’t played up to the preseason hype and have dropped from preseason title contenders to a playoff bubble team. While things haven’t been going great, let’s not forget that this team battled Cal and NDSU into the fourth quarter — they’re dangerous. I think Dan Hawkins will right the ship this week and surprise the FCS.
UC Davis 41, Weber State 38
Cameron: In pre-season, this contest featuring two of the conferences co-champions from a season ago looked to possibly be the FCS game of the year. While this weekend’s NDSU vs SDSU game will now likely take that title, this game between the Aggies and Wildcats should still be interesting to watch. UC Davis has dropped games they shouldn’t have, and as of recently appear to be almost back on track, while Weber’s running game and defense continue to dominate most opponents they face. I think this game will be closer than people think but ultimately Weber comes out on top.
Weber State 35, UC Davis 33
Eastern Washington (3-4) @ (10) Montana (5-2) (-7.5) @ 12 p.m. on Pluto TV
Parker: The Griz are back! Buy your plane ticket to Frisco, cause here they come! Bobby has this squad destined for glory! Oh...wait...they lost by how much? The Sac State quarterback had six touchdowns and 49 points through three quarters? And the Grizzz lost their starting quarterback to injury? The home field and local officials may be an X-factor to keeping the Grizzz afloat this week. The unanonymous pick across the board from the ‘experts’ may be a bad omen, but the Grizzz definitely got exploited last week, and with junior quarterback stud Eric Barriere coming to town, the Griz look vulnerable this week. I expect a big time win by the Eag’s to keep their playoff hopes alive and well.
EWU 48, Grizzz 31
Caleb: Well, the “untouchable” griz (yes, I know I didn’t capitalize the ‘G’) suffered their first FCS loss of the season after Sac State picked them apart last Saturday. The 27-point loss, slid them behind the Bobcats in the STATS FCS Top-25 rankings, and rightfully so. Eastern Washington is another team that hasn’t been quite as impressive as expected. The Eagles are sub-.500 and have yet to win a road game this season, but I think that changes this week. The Griz have historically dropped the ball the second half of the season (ahem, 2016 and 2018), and why not this year too?
EWU 30, Griz 28
Cameron: After MSU’s loss to Sac State, I was experiencing headaches, trouble sleeping and a loss of appetite. But luckily the Hornets 27 point blowout of Montana last week was just what the doctor ordered. Now I am feeling much better, but unfortunately UM Senior QB Dalton Sneed is now expected to miss Saturday’s ball game against EWU after hurting his ankle last week. While many of my picks have been wrong this year, I feel confident in this game as the Eag’s are a rising team and it appears the Griz may be falling.
EWU 45, MSU Rejects 28
(1) North Dakota State (7-0) @ (3) South Dakota State (6-1) (+4.5) @ 1 p.m. on ESPN+
Parker: First off, if you enjoy FCS football, please give this week’s “ESPN College Gameday” a watch Saturday morning. The higher the ratings and better the feedback, the more likely the show is to revisit the FCS division. Also, please take a look at Cameron’s article this week about “College Gameday”, it's definitely worth the read. All that being said, I think the Bizon are the best team in the country, but I believe South Dakota State is going to embrace the environment and pull out an emotional win.
SDSU 37, NDSU 30
Caleb: “College Gameday” has seen the light and will be coming to watch the best level of college football. Both these teams are FCS juggernauts. Concerns of an NDSU title hangover have been all but forgotten. The Bison have handled each of their opponents this year and are looking to continue the trend. SDSU remains unbeaten in the FCS, with their only loss coming to Minnesota. This game has obvious playoff implications. The winner may very well earn home-field advantage all the way to Frisco. With the Dakota Marker and possibly the conference title on the line, I expect the Bison to keep on rollin’.
NDSU 31, SDSU 27
Cameron: College Football’s most popular show, “ESPN College Gameday” will be in beautiful Brookings, South Dakota this weekend for a high stakes edition of the Dakota Marker Game between top ranked North Dakota State and third ranked South Dakota State. Folks, get ready for a close ball game as both of these teams have explosive offenses and stout defenses. SDSU has been the only team to be a consistent threat to the Bison the past few years and this year should be no different as they will hope to expose NDSU’s freshman QB Trey Lance. I like upsets, so Go Jacks!
SDSU 31, NDSU 28