There is a pretty good chance your college fantasy football team is in need of a defense in Week 10.
Four of the top five teams in the AP top 25 are off this week. And not so coincidentally, three of those teams — Alabama, Ohio State and Penn State — have defenses that are in the top five in fantasy scoring.
Throw LSU, Wisconsin, Missouri and Minnesota into the off week mix as well, and there are a lot of people scouring the waiver wire. And we’re here to help.
Your first move should be to check if the Illini defense is available in your league. At 25 percent ownership, there’s a decent chance it is. The Illini play a Rutgers team that has scored 14 points in five Big Ten games. Three of those games have been shutouts. There’s a possible gold mine out there in the Illinois defense this week. If you’re lucky enough to pick it up, enjoy the benefits.
The Eagles have a good matchup this week as well. Boston College’s defense hasn’t been very good this season; it’s scored more points than just seven other defenses. But Saturday’s game is against Syracuse, a team that’s struggled in conference play. The Orange is 0-4 and has scored just 20 points once in those four games.
Virginia is a play for the rest of the season. The Cavaliers average four sacks a game and have been a solid fantasy unit even without cornerback Bryce Hall. The Cavaliers are the No. 10 defense in college fantasy football and have games against North Carolina and Georgia Tech coming up. If you’re skittish about your matchups in the next few weeks, Virginia is a safe play.
If you want to risk a poor showing against Michigan in a couple weeks, you may want to get Michigan State after this weekend. The Spartans are off in Week 10 but have games against Illinois and Rutgers sandwiched around a Nov. 16 matchup against the Wolverines. Michigan State is owned in just 12 percent of leagues despite scoring more points than defenses like Auburn and Michigan.
The Cougars are also off in Week 10 but have games against Cal and Stanford up after that if you’re looking ahead. Cal has struggled on offense ever since starting quarterback Chase Garbers got injured and Stanford’s offense hasn’t been lighting the world on fire either. The Cardinal have scored 137 points in six conference games, though over half that total (72) came in games against Oregon State and Arizona. The latter matchup came in Week 9 and led to the dismissal of Arizona defensive coordinator Marcel Yates.
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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports.
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