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Saturday Underdogs-Hokies and Others On High Upset Alert

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Last weeks upset alert article was pretty accurate. All five games selected were decided by a possession or less and much closer than experts projected.

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Out of the five teams picked in my last piece, Virginia Tech was the only team to go down. I guaranteed Oklahoma State and TCU to lose, but both squads were very lucky and edged out the win.

I received some great feedback on last weeks article and frankly choosing underdogs to outright win is so much more fun and challenging. College football was built on upsets and that's why we love it.

Lets see who makes the list this week and whom I believe is certain to lose on Saturday.

Pittsburgh @ Virginia Tech: The Hokies cracked the list again because you don't know which Frank Beamer squad is going to show up. The team that was leading Ohio State at halftime or the one that just lost to East Carolina. Pittsburgh has opened the year 2-1 and very easily could be 3-0. Head Coach Pat Narduzzi is a defensive mastermind and will have that side of the ball well prepared. Pitt also has a stud at the wide receiver position. Future first round pick Tyler Boyd has 21 receptions on the year in just two games. How will Bud Foster defend Boyd with Kendall Fuller out for the year? The defensive coordinator has come under heavy fire after last weeks debacle and must be better come Saturday.  Narduzzi will attempt to rattle the inexperienced Brenden Motley by bringing lots of pressure. The Hokies offensive line will need to do better job of protecting their signal caller if they want to win. With rain expected to slow things down in Blacksburg, this game won't be decided until late in the fourth.

Texas @ No. 4 TCU: We can all agree that TCU should of loss last weekend. The Horned Frogs were bailed out by a lucky touchdown reception down in Lubbock. I believe that was TCU's wake up call and they may have righted the ship. What about Texas? Does anyone need a win more than Charlie Strong and his Longhorns? Texas had the opportunity to beat Oklahoma State last week, but a special teams blunder cost them the victory. I am not a believer in TCU and I don't think they will make it out of the Big 12 undefeated. The Horned Frogs can score points, but they also can't stop anyone. Texas has opened the year with a brutal schedule and Strong needs to get a signature win sooner rather than later. The Longhorns must play a complete game and if they want to pull off this major upset and also limit their turnovers. I stopped short of picking this game as one of my guaranteed upset picks. However I do think it will be much closer than experts are projecting. Look for this game to be decided on a last possession.

Louisville @ North Carolina State: Yes, I know I know. Louisville gets their first win of the year against Samford and now they are going to go into Raleigh and leave with a victory. My answer to that is maybe. If Hurricane Joaquin doesn't force the game to be cancelled, the Cardinals have a very good chance to sneak in and make some noise. The Cardinals have a very talented defense and I am just not sold on North Carolina State. Especially after this weeks news of former lead rusher Shadrach Thornton being dismissed from the team. That's not the type of publicity you want during the season. Especially from a senior, and one of your best players. Look for Bobby Petrino and his offense to finally play more consistently now that a starting quarterback has been named. Dual-threat signal caller Lamar Jackson has won the job and will give the Wolfpack defense fits. North Carolina State will need a solid performance from their own quarterback. Senior Jacoby Brisett has done a great job limiting the turnovers, but that has been against inferior talent. I also think the coaching edge goes to Louisville and that is huge in college football. This game will be tight going into the fourth and the Cardinals will have the opportunity get their first conference win of 2015.

Week 5 Guaranteed Upsets to Happen (0-2 YTD)

Northern Illinois @ Central Michigan: Yes, you read that right. There is an upset pick between two MAC teams. The definition of an upset in my opinion is when a team who is an underdog by Vegas standards wins the game outright. That is exactly what you have with Central Michigan. Northern Illinois is coming in with all they hype. They had Ohio State on the ropes and then almost upset Boston College last week. Because of that, I believe they will lose the game. Central Michigan is a good football team in the MAC conference and gave the Huskies fits last year racking up over 500 yards of total offense. I am not a believer in Northern Illinois offense or quarterback Drew Hare. The defense has some talented players, but I just think they are drained after two hard fought weeks. Central Michigan will walk away with the victory, and I think pretty easily.

No. 23 West Virginia @ No. 15 Oklahoma: Is there a team out there more under the radar than the West Virginia Mountaineers. Now I can admit that West Virginia's schedule has begun with cupcakes, but don't let that fool you. Dana Holgorsen's squad has given the Sooners defense fits in recent years. On top of that the Mountaineers look like they have formidable defense of their own. Oklahoma is coming off a bye week and will be expected to handle West Virginia with ease. I don't think so. To me, the Sooners have yet to play a complete game, and seem very inconsistent. Bob Stoops squad was supposed to have a powerful running attack, but they currently are ranked outside the top 50 in production. If not for Baker Mayfield, Oklahoma could easily be 2-1. There will be bedlam in Norman. West Virginia will kickoff October with an upset and take down the Number 15 ranked team come Saturday.