Week 11 of the 2020 college football season has been absolutely ravaged by COVID-19 postponements. With 30% of the games scheduled for Saturday not being played — and the Pac-12 calling an audible by throwing a game together for Sunday — there are slim pickings even amongst the top 25 teams in the nation. In fact, there’s no matchups between ranked teams this weekend despite the fact that college football remains full steam ahead over its final month.
Newly minted No. 2 Notre Dame will take part in the featured afternoon contest as it travels to a tough Boston College team. The last time the Fighting Irish beat the No. 1 team in the nation was in 1993 against Florida State. The next week, they faced the Eagles and lost. Will history repeat itself, or is Notre Dame too motivated with the College Football Playoff on the horizon?
The evening slate features No. 6 Florida, No. 11 Oregon and No. 13 Wisconsin in conference games against strong opponents, though none is necessarily projected to lose. But we’re not here to talk about wins and losses. We care about whether these teams will cover their spreads.
Be sure to stick with CBS Sports throughout the day for college football coverage from the opening kickoff at noon to the final whistle of day. Let’s take a look at our expert picks for Week 11.
Odds via William Hill Sportsbook | All times Eastern
No. 9 Miami at Virginia Tech (noon, ESPN)
When you see a top 10 team on the road as an underdog, that’s not a typo. It’s a signal to trust the oddsmakers because either they know something we don’t or they have gotten ahead of what will become obvious in terms of a matchup advantage. D’Eriq King was phenomenal against NC State, but the Hurricanes defense was not. I’ll take the angry Hokies in a bounce-back spot. Pick: Virginia Tech -2 — Chip Patterson
No. 2 Notre Dame at Boston College (3:30 p.m., ABC)
So you’ve got Notre Dame trying to avoid the letdown in a spot where an emotional letdown is totally plausible, and Boston College is not only fired up to host the No. 2 team in the country but has confidence it can win after the near-upset against Clemson in Death Valley. Plus, it’s the Red Bandana Game, which honors the memory of Welles Crowther, a former Boston College lacrosse player who lost his life in the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001, after saving as many as 18 lives. They’ve got unique uniforms for the occasion, and it’s a special game every single year. The cover feels like it’s in the cards, and an outright upset isn’t out of the question. Pick: Boston College +13.5 — Chip Patterson
Arkansas at No. 6 Florida (7 p.m., ESPN)
Arkansas is 6-0 against the spread this year, and it’ll make it 7-0 this week. This game just screams let down for the Gators. Tight end Kyle Pitts’ injury has dominated storylines, but coming down from the high of winning a big rivalry last week coupled with the Hogs’ toughness — especially in the trenches — will make this an ugly, old-school slugfest. Give me the Gators to win, but the Razorbacks to cover. Pick: Arkansas +17.5 — Barrett Sallee
No. 11 Oregon at Washington State (7 p.m., Fox)
Oregon didn’t necessarily pummel Stanford into submission last week. But the Ducks covered a 10-point spread comfortably and might have an even bigger talent edge this week. Washington State got off to a great start under Nick Rolovich by winning at Oregon State. But Oregon has the speed and talent on both sides to turn this into a track meet, and the Ducks should be able to build a large enough lead to cover another 10-point spread. Pick: Oregon (-10) — David Cobb
No. 13 Wisconsin at Michigan (7:30 p.m., ABC)
My official advice is to stay away from this game entirely when it comes to betting on it. There’s simply too much we don’t know ahead of the game to make a confident call. But if you must, I’d lean toward the Badgers before the Wolverines. I expect that Graham Mertz will play, and Michigan’s defense has been torn apart by quarterbacks with less talent than Mertz already. The Wolverines pass rush was already nonexistent and lost its best pass-rusher in Aidan Hutchinson for the season. Due to having to cover so long, Michigan’s secondary has been torn to pieces and is continually getting called for pass interference and holding. With Mertz playing, I’d expect the Badgers to be able to take advantage of that early and often. Pick: Wisconsin -4.5 — Tom Fornelli