Six teams in college football have yet to play a conference game. That changes this week for Cincinnati, Western Kentucky, Wyoming, Colorado State, San Diego State and Texas State. Conference play can create a lot of interesting situational spots because teams play rivalry games or take on the class of the conference and then have a completely different matchup the next week.
Like I mentioned last week, situational spots are not the be-all, end-all. They are not sole justifications for a pick. They are one way of cutting down the card to narrow your focus instead of trying to handicap every game on the board. They are a part of the handicapping process to add to the equation. Maybe they can push you to one side of a game or keep you off a side.
Keep in mind that the spread is also a big part of the equation. The favorite may clearly be the superior team but might not play up to that level. The underdog may have a little extra juice and play above its usual capabilities.
Every little bit helps in a tough business like this, so here are some examples of situational spots for Week 6.
Houston (-6, 59) at Tulane
It seems a little uncomfortable laying a road number with Houston, especially when Tulane would have been favored in this game just a couple of weeks ago, but the Thursday night spot certainly favors the Cougars with both teams on short rest.