Roy's Picks: Week No. 4

A new column from publisher Roy Philpott previewing this weekend's games.

No. 25 Boston College at Clemson (Saturday, 12:00 PM JP)
Both teams are coming off tough home losses to nationally ranked opponents. The health of Boston College quarterback Quinton Porter is critical for the Eagles' chances, and right now, it looks like he may not play. Offensively, Clemson will struggle on the ground against the nation's third ranked rushing defense, but QB Charlie Whitehurst will be the difference in this one. The Tigers win another nail biter in Death Valley.

Roy's Pick: Boston College (+3.5); Clemson Straight Up

Troy at South Carolina (Saturday, 7:00 PM)
The Gamecocks were dreadful in last weekend's 38-17 romp at the hands of Alabama. Perhaps the most disturbing fact is the Crimson Tide dominated the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball ... totaling 338 yards on the ground while holding the Gamecocks to just 70 in the same category. That should change this week as South Carolina's running game finally gets healthy against a Troy team that simply doesn't have the personnel to compete.

Roy's Pick: South Carolina (-18.5); South Carolina Straight Up

No. 15 Georgia Tech at No. 4 Virginia Tech (3:30 ABC)
The Yellow Jackets travel to Lane Stadium for a critical ACC matchup between nationally ranked Coastal division teams. Georgia Tech QB Reggie Ball, who spent two days last week in the hospital with viral meningitis, may not be able to play. Meanwhile, Virginia Tech QB Marcus Vick has somehow lived up to his preseason hype. He does so again Saturday as the Hokies win by 17.

Roy's Pick: Virginia Tech (-10); Virginia Tech Straight Up

No. 7 Georgia at Mississippi State (Saturday, 9:00 PM ESPN-2)
Upset alert! Upset alert! Georgia travels to Starkville, Miss. in a dangerous road game entering the heart of its SEC schedule. D.J. Shockley needs to demonstrate that his dreadful performance against South Carolina two weeks ago was nothing more than a fluke. Mississippi State keeps this one closer than expected, but falls short in the end.

Roy's Pick: Mississippi State (+15.5); Georgia Straight Up

North Carolina at N.C. State (Saturday, 12:00 PM JP)
The Tar Heels scored a measly three points against a decent Wisconsin team last weekend in Chapel Hill. How well can they possibly expect to do against one of the top defensive lines in the nation featuring ends Manny Lawson and Mario Williams? State wins a laugher as John Bunting's seat begins to warm ever so slightly.

Roy's Pick: N.C. State (-10); N.C. State Straight Up

Updated 2005 Record: Straight Up: 10-5; Spread: 10-5 Top Stories