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College football picks Week 15: Tampa Bay Times staff predictions

Here are our picks for this week’s conference championships.
LSU head coach Ed Orgeron and the Tigers face Georgia in the SEC Championship game at 4 p.m. Saturday in Atlanta. [MATTHEW HINTON  |  AP]
LSU head coach Ed Orgeron and the Tigers face Georgia in the SEC Championship game at 4 p.m. Saturday in Atlanta. [MATTHEW HINTON | AP]
Published Dec. 6, 2019

The picks:

Away Home Matt Baker, College Beat Writer Joey Knight, USF Beat Writer Mike Sherman, Deputy Editor-Sports Traci Johnson, Assistant Sports Editor
Oregon Utah (-6.5) Utah 24-14 Utah 33-24 Utah 42-28 Utah 31-21
Baylor Oklahoma (-7.5) OU 38-31 OU 42-38 OU 41-31 OU 42-38
Miami (Ohio) Central Michigan (-6.5) CMU 31-24 CMU 40-24 CMU 31-27 CMU 34-28
Louisiana Appalachian St. (-6.5) App St. 24-21 App St 38-28 App St. 28-21 App St 31-24
UAB Florida Atlantic (-7.5) UAB 31-28 FAU 34-31 UAB 30-28 FAU 28-27
Cincinnati Memphis (-10.5) Memphis 42-28 Memphis 40-20 Memphis 35-24 Memphis 38-28
Hawaii Boise State (-14.5) Boise State 28-17 Boise 27-20 Boise State 31-20 Boise State 34-20
Georgia LSU (-7.5) LSU 31-24 Georgia 37-34 LSU 30-23 LSU 35-27
Virginia Clemson (-28.5) Clemson 42-21 Clemson 42-21 Clemson 48-14 Clemson 42-7
Ohio State (-16.5) Wisconsin Ohio State 42-17 Ohio State 34-20 Ohio State 41-21 Ohio State 45-21
Lock of the week Utah Utah Clemson Clemson
Upset of the week UAB UGa UAB NA
Last week vs. spread 13-7 12-8 14-6 11-9
Overall vs. spread 143-124 141-126 136-131 126-141
Last week straight up 18-2 14-6 18-2 16-4
Overall straight up 206-64 187-83 199-71 198-72
Locks 11-3 6-8 9-5 10-4
Upsets 7-7 4-10 4-10 7-7

Contact Mike Sherman at Follow @mikesherman


  1. San Francisco 49ers running back Raheem Mostert, who finishes with 220 yards rushing and four TDs, breaks away from the Green Bay Packers during the first half of their NFC Championship Game on Sunday, Jan. 19, 2020, in Santa Clara, Calif. [TONY AVELAR  |  AP]
    Little-known Raheem Mostert, a former skateboarder-turned-surfer-turned-football player out of New Smyrna Beach High, has a historic game, rushing for 220 yards and four touchdowns.
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  3. Kansas City Chiefs receiver Tyreek Hill catches a touchdown pass in front of Tennessee Titans defensive back Logan Ryan during the first half of the AFC Championship Game on Sunday, Jan. 19, 2020, in Kansas City, Mo. [CHARLIE RIEDEL  |  AP]
    KC falls behind once again, this time 10-0, before rallying in the AFC Championship Game.
  4. USF sophomore Elisa Pinzan had seven 3-pointers Sunday in the Bulls' 64-57 loss to UCF at the Yuengling Center. [JOEY KNIGHT | Times] [Joey Knight]
    The Knights sweep a weekend of basketball against the Bulls.
  5. Tampa Bay Lightning left wing Alex Killorn (17) celebrate after he beats Arizona Coyotes goaltender Adin Hill (31) to score the first goal of the game during first period action at Amalie Arena on Thursday, Jan. 9, 2020 in Tampa. [DIRK SHADD  |  Tampa Bay Times]
    The Lightning forward has hovered just below 20 goals for years and finally reached the mark Friday.
  6. East quarterback James Morgan, of Florida International University, (12) during the first half of the East West Shrine football game Saturday. [CHRIS O'MEARA  |  AP]
    Morgan, who leads his East team to a pair of touchdowns, raises his draft stock as do a few others the Bucs should keep an eye on.
  7. Saturday's Seminole Shootout was full of closely contested basketball action. [DIRK SHADD  |  Tampa Bay Times]
    Berkeley Prep and Clearwater also pull out tight thrillers Saturday.
  8. Tampa Bay Lightning center Steven Stamkos (91) leads the celebration as players contratulate right wing Nikita Kucherov (86) after he beat Los Angeles Kings goaltender Jonathan Quick (32) to tie the game 3-3 in the final moments during third period action at Amalie Arena on Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2020 in Tampa. The Lightning went on to win 4 to 3 in the shootout.  [DIRK SHADD  |  Tampa Bay Times]
    Tampa Bay went from sixth place in the Atlantic Division to second behind a 10-game win streak.
  9. USF senior point guard Laquincy Rideau (3) drives in the first half of his team's 55-54 loss Saturday at UCF. [Photo provided by UCF Athletics] [UCF Athletics]
    The Bulls coach doesn’t hold back following his team’s controversial 55-54 loss in Orlando
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