College Football Week 3 Picks and Predictions from WhatIfSports.com From WhatIfSports.com image

College Football Week 3 Picks and Predictions

Week 3 predictions for every D-I/FBS college football game

By Ryan Fowler and Jake Westrich - WhatIfSports.com
September 12, 2011

Each Monday, WhatIfSports.com's NCAA college football simulation engine will provide you with game predictions for every D-1 FBS game that upcoming week. The college football simulation engine generates detailed information for each game including each team's chances of winning (Win%) and the average points scored for both teams. Make sure to share the college football information you gained here with your friends by either checking out our NCAA football widgets on the WhatIf To Go page or clicking on the social networking share bar at the top and bottom of this article.

Check out our 2011 College Football Season-to-Date page to follow our accuracy and for Upsets of the Week available on Wednesdays.

The statistical inputs to the thousands of college football simulations are based on rigorous analysis of each team's roster, depth charts and statistically based player rankings. Roster modifications are made in cases of injury or suspension and those players are removed from their team's game simulation for that week.

Week 3

No matter your collegiate allegiance, Saturday night's Notre Dame versus Michigan matchup was injected with so much adrenaline the lights came on in the Big House and may go down as one of the most entertaining games in the sport's history.

The two storied programs have experienced greater success and happier days as they redefine their offensive and defensive philosophies under new head coaches, but for one night the Wolverines and Fighting Irish returned to the forefront of college football.

That momentum carries us into a big Week 3 and our WhatIfSports.com games of the week.

<a href="http://msn.foxsports.com/video?vid=64a3bc90-b365-47f8-b93b-1b45315cd889" target="_new" title="">WhatIfSports: Week 3 CFB picks</a>

Game of the Week: Oklahoma at FSU

The Oklahoma Sooners received a Week 2 bye (pet peeve for this writer - you've played one game!). The top team in the country must have really needed the rest following a 47-14 beat down of Tulsa the previous week. Landry Jones was sharp, but Dominique Whaley hogged the Sunday headlines with 131 rushing yards and four touchdowns against the Hurricane.

ACC favorite, fifth-ranked Florida State, has played teams out of the Sun Belt and Big South to warm up for their showdown with the Sooners. They outscored Louisiana-Monroe and Charleston Southern 96-10.

The two teams have met six teams over the years with OU leading 5-1. Last year, the Sooners pounded the Seminoles 47-17 in Norman. Jones finished that game with 380 yards and four touchdowns, outplaying now Minnesota Vikings quarterback, Christian Ponder.

FSU plays host this week with junior quarterback EJ Manuel behind center. He's already racked up 581 yards and six touchdown passes.

The WhatIfSports.com simulation engine "played" the Sooners and Seminoles 101 times with Oklahoma winning 55.4 percent of the time by an average score of 33-31.

OSU at Miami (FL)

The NCAA's iron fist of "justice" as an underlying storyline may supersede the on-the-field action between the Buckeyes and Hurricanes on Saturday. Because the two programs don't appear to be BCS National Championship contenders this season, the likelihood of scandal-centric coverage is almost a certainty.

As it always does, the WhatIfSports.com simulation engine has accounted for OSU and "U" suspensions and depth chart changes. The simulation also takes into account the return of quarterback Jacory Harris and linebacker Sean Spence to the Hurricanes.

The Bucks and 'Canes 2010 contest can't really be used for context as the majority of the Ohio State offense that rolled up Miami 36-24 is either suspended or in the NFL. Terrelle Pryor accounted for 346 total yards and two touchdowns in last year's game.

A depleted Hurricanes roster fought Maryland in soggy conditions in Week 1. The Terps offense took advantage of the green defensive unit Al Golden was forced to start. Maryland finished with 499 yards of total offense, while their defense forced four Miami turnovers. The Hurricanes' play was just as sloppy as the conditions.

The WhatIfSports.com college football simulation engine "played" the Bucks and Hurricanes 101 times and has OSU winning 71.3 percent of the time by an average score of 25-21.

College Football Week 3
MatchupWin%Avg Score 
South Alabama Jaguars 5.09Boxscore
@ North Carolina State Wolfpack95.053 
Gardner-Webb Runnin' Bulldogs 5.07Boxscore
@ Wake Forest Demon Deacons95.046 
Arkansas State Red Wolves 7.917Boxscore
@ Virginia Tech Hokies92.136 
Kansas Jayhawks16.818Boxscore
@ Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets83.232 
Virginia Cavaliers29.218Boxscore
@ North Carolina Tar Heels70.827 
Duke Blue Devils32.722Boxscore
@ Boston College Eagles67.328 
Auburn Tigers45.524Boxscore
@ Clemson Tigers54.525 
Oklahoma Sooners55.433Boxscore
@ Florida State Seminoles44.631 
West Virginia Mountaineers62.928Boxscore
@ Maryland Terrapins37.124 
Ohio State Buckeyes71.325Boxscore
@ Miami (FL) Hurricanes28.721 
Florida A&M Rattlers 5.08Boxscore
@ South Florida Bulls95.050 
Akron Zips 5.513Boxscore
@ Cincinnati Bearcats95.540 
Iowa State Cyclones35.619Boxscore
@ Connecticut Huskies64.427 
Eastern Michigan Eagles 5.012Boxscore
@ Michigan Wolverines95.045 
Southeast Missouri State Redhawks 5.09Boxscore
@ Purdue Boilermakers95.045 
South Carolina State Bulldogs 5.08Boxscore
@ Indiana Hoosiers95.043 
Washington Huskies29.717Boxscore
@ Nebraska Cornhuskers70.324 
Pittsburgh Panthers61.428Boxscore
@ Iowa Hawkeyes38.624 
Miami (OH) RedHawks64.425Boxscore
@ Minnesota Golden Gophers35.620 
Arizona State Sun Devils75.229Boxscore
@ Illinois Fighting Illini24.819 
Marshall Thundering Herd32.718Boxscore
@ Ohio Bobcats67.325 
Central Michigan Chippewas43.127Boxscore
@ Western Michigan Broncos56.928 
Wyoming Cowboys43.618Boxscore
@ Bowling Green Falcons56.420 
Penn State Nittany Lions68.329Boxscore
@ Temple Owls31.722 
Buffalo Bulls78.223Boxscore
@ Ball State Cardinals21.815 
Wisconsin Badgers82.237Boxscore
@ Northern Illinois Huskies17.823 
Boise State Broncos91.142Boxscore
@ Toledo Rockets 8.924 
Missouri State Bears 5.06Boxscore
@ Oregon Ducks95.073 
Presbyterian Blue Hose 5.07Boxscore
@ California Golden Bears95.046 
Colorado State Rams15.820Boxscore
@ Colorado Buffaloes84.232 
Syracuse Orange30.723Boxscore
@ USC Trojans69.331 
Texas Longhorns73.327Boxscore
@ UCLA Bruins26.718 
Stanford Cardinal85.136Boxscore
@ Arizona Wildcats14.922 
Coastal Carolina Chanticleers 5.08Boxscore
@ Georgia Bulldogs95.057 
North Texas Mean Green 5.08Boxscore
@ Alabama Crimson Tide95.045 
Troy Trojans12.921Boxscore
@ Arkansas Razorbacks87.136 
Navy Midshipmen13.919Boxscore
@ South Carolina Gamecocks86.133 
Tennessee Volunteers38.120Boxscore
@ Florida Gators61.925 
Louisville Cardinals44.120Boxscore
@ Kentucky Wildcats55.922 
LSU Tigers69.329Boxscore
@ Mississippi State Bulldogs30.724 
Mississippi Rebels68.828Boxscore
@ Vanderbilt Commodores31.222 
North Dakota Fighting Sioux 5.07Boxscore
@ Fresno State Bulldogs95.051 
Houston Cougars62.436Boxscore
@ Louisiana Tech Bulldogs37.631 
UTEP Miners82.226Boxscore
@ New Mexico State Aggies17.816 
Nevada Wolf Pack93.135Boxscore
@ San Jose State Spartans 6.919 
Michigan State Spartans60.431Boxscore
@ Notre Dame Fighting Irish39.628 
Utah Utes81.232Boxscore
@ Brigham Young Cougars18.823 
Northwestern Wildcats82.229Boxscore
@ Army Black Knights17.817 
Western Illinois Leathernecks 5.06Boxscore
@ Missouri Tigers95.054 
Idaho Vandals 5.014Boxscore
@ Texas A&M Aggies95.041 
Stephen F. Austin Lumberjacks 5.09Boxscore
@ Baylor Bears95.057 
Kent State Golden Flashes18.816Boxscore
@ Kansas State Wildcats81.227 
Southeastern Louisiana Lions 5.08Boxscore
@ Southern Miss Golden Eagles95.052 
Northwestern State Demons 5.09Boxscore
@ Southern Methodist Mustangs95.055 
Austin Peay Governors21.811Boxscore
@ Memphis Tigers78.225 
Tulane Green Wave40.625Boxscore
@ UAB Blazers59.426 
Oklahoma State Cowboys90.145Boxscore
@ Tulsa Golden Hurricane 9.929 
Louisiana-Monroe Warhawks13.917Boxscore
@ TCU Horned Frogs86.138 
Washington State Cougars24.823Boxscore
@ San Diego State Aztecs75.235 
Texas Tech Red Raiders95.035Boxscore
@ New Mexico Lobos 5.011 
Hawaii Warriors95.040Boxscore
@ UNLV Rebels 5.017 
Indiana State Sycamores 5.09Boxscore
@ Western Kentucky Hilltoppers95.037 
Nicholls Colonels 5.910Boxscore
@ Louisiana-Lafayette Ragin' Cajuns94.133 
UCF Knights71.335Boxscore
@ FIU Golden Panthers28.725 
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Ryan Fowler is the Content Manager for WhatIfSports.com. He can be reached at rfowler@whatifsports.com.

Jake Westrich is the Digital Content Coordinator for WhatIfSports.com. He can be reached at jwestrich@whatifsports.com.

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