Missouri Could Be Next Upstart With Victory Over OU


Wednesday, October 10th 2007, 2:04 pm
By: News On 6


There have been some unfamiliar names residing in the top 10 this season. Boston College, South Carolina and Kentucky have reached heights they haven't in years _ and South Florida's never been here before.

Missouri could be next to make a big jump.

The 11th-ranked Tigers play at Oklahoma on Saturday, looking for their second straight 6-0 start. They're already ranked higher than they've been since 1981 when Mizzou was No. 8.

Despite last year's 6-0 start, the season didn't end well for coach Gary Pinkel's Tigers, who finished 8-5.

In 6 1/2 seasons under Pinkel, the Tigers are 42-35 and have been quite the tease. First with Brad Smith and now with Chase Daniel at quarterback, Missouri's had some potent offenses but is still searching for its first Big 12 North title.

Beat the Sooners and Missouri can start thinking even bigger than Big 12 championships. The Tigers would suddenly be a player in the national championship race.

The picks:

Thursday

No. 21 Florida State (minus 6) at Wake Forest

Deacons shut out 'Noles in Tallahassee last season for first win since '73 ... FLORIDA STATE 24-14.

Friday

No. 16 Hawaii (minus 18 1/2) at San Jose State

Warriors have won six straight in series ... HAWAII 50-30.

Saturday's Games

No. 1 LSU (minus 9 1/2) at No. 17 Kentucky

Tigers' last trip to Lexington was Blue Grass Miracle of '02 ... KENTUCKY 28-26.

Oregon State (plus 14) at No. 2 California

Visiting team has won four straight in series ... CALIFORNIA 44-24.

Kent State (plus 30) at No. 3 Ohio State

Buckeyes are 22-1 against current MAC teams ... OHIO STATE 36-3.

No. 4 Boston College (minus 13 1/2) at Notre Dame

Eagles have won four straight against Irish ... BOSTON COLLEGE 31-14.

UCF (plus 11 1/2) at No. 5 South Florida

Bulls have won both meetings against Knights ... SOUTH FLORIDA 28-14.

No. 11 Missouri (plus 10) at No. 6 Oklahoma

Sooners have won 16 of last 17 against Tigers ... OKLAHOMA 45-24.

No. 7 South Carolina (minus 7) at North Carolina

Steve Spurrier and Butch Davis last met in 2000 Sugar Bowl ... SOUTH CAROLINA 23-17.

Washington State (plus 18) at No. 9 Oregon

Ducks' Dennis Dixon is Pac-10's most efficient passer (168.9 rating) ... OREGON 49-28.

Arizona (plus 21) at No. 10 Southern California

Trojans have won five straight over Wildcats ... USC 37-20.

No. 12 Virginia Tech (minus 13 1/2) at Duke

Hokies have shut out Blue Devils three of last four meetings ... VIRGINIA TECH 24-7.

Washington (plus 11 1/2) at No. 14 Arizona State

Sun Devils have won three straight in series ... ARIZONA STATE 35-21.

Louisville (plus 10 1/2) at No. 15 Cincinnati

Cardinals have won four straight in battle for Keg of Nails ... CINCINNATI 40-37.

No. 18 Illinois (minus 3 1/2) at Iowa

Illini have lost four straight in series ... IOWA 20-19.

No. 19 Wisconsin (plus 6 1/2) at Penn State

Badgers are 6-4 against Nittany Lions in Big Ten play ... WISCONSIN 28-24.

Baylor (plus 25) at No. 20 Kansas

Jayhawks looking for first 6-0 start since '95 ... KANSAS 49-14.

No. 22 Auburn (plus 3) at Arkansas

Tigers had three-game winning streak against Hogs snapped last year ... ARKANSAS 28-26.

No. 23 Texas (minus 16) at Iowa State

Longhorns have won five straight over Cyclones ... TEXAS 37-17.

No. 24 Georgia (minus 7) at Vanderbilt

Vandy hasn't beaten Bulldogs in consecutive years since 1956-58 ... GEORGIA 26-20.

No. 25 Tennessee (minus 7) at Mississippi State

Vols have won four straight and seven of eight against Bulldogs ... MISSISSIPPI STATE 27-23.

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Last week's record: 11-5 (straight); 6-10 (vs. points)

Season: 108-19 (straight); 54-55-1 (vs. points)