Though it would be easy money, I’m saying now that I refuse to pick any games between Division I and Division I-AA teams this season. So you won’t be seeing (20) Florida State (Samford), (19) Penn State (Youngstown State), (9) Iowa (Eastern Illinois), (16) Georgia Tech (So. Car. State), (25) West Virginia (Coastal Carolina), or (17) Arkansas (Tennessee Tech) this week.
It’s embarrassing for me to even type those matchups. Every I-A team playing a I-AA team should be ashamed of itself. And that includes my beloved Indiana Hoosiers, though we could always use the win.
Saturday, September 4, 2010
Miami (OH) at (4) Florida (-36.5)
So Miami isn’t a 1-AA team, but they’re pretty damn close. I think the Gators come out and try to make a statement now that we’re post-Tebow. The main thing is Miami of Ohio is totally helpless, and, according to a friend of mine from Cincinnati, is where all the spoiled kids go anyway. I’m thinking something in the neighborhood of 56-7 here.
Such a dumb-ass pick though. Huge spreads are suckers’ bets.
Pick: Florida covers.
12:30 pm ET
Illinois at Missouri (-12)
Hell, I don’t know. The only reason I’m picking this game at all is because I want to monitor the Ron Zook Death March 2010. When coaches overhaul the entire staff after a total meltdown that lasted multiple seasons, the guy isn’t saving a damn thing.
I do like Blaine Gabbert, but this will probably be the last time I pick a Mizzou game until they’re playing some one good.
Pick: Missouri wins but doesn’t cover
3:30 pm ET
Purdue at Notre Dame (-11)
I don’t know if you knew this, but Purdue sucks. And I don’t mean that just as an Indiana alumnus. I mean it in the conventional sense. They’re bad at football, and I should know from bad football since I’m an Indiana alumus.
There isn’t one certain thing one can point out that makes Purdue bad, though the fact that Joe Tiller stopped recruiting during his final five years doesn’t help. They just don’t have enough talent. I’m sure Marve will be good and I’m sure they have a random defensive player who’ll end up in the NFL, but as a team? They suck.
Notice how I haven’t mentioned Notre Dame yet? It’s because it’s impossible to tell how they’re going to come out. You’d think Brian Kelly’s system is going to work with the players they have. But no one will be able to tell for at least three games.
Pick: Notre Dame covers
Connecticut at Michigan (-3)
There’s just something about UConn football that makes me hesitate every time they’re supposed to win a game. I realize Michigan is the favorite, but UConn is the better team. I think it’s the fact that they’ve never had a good quarterback. Or that they run the same offense bad NFL teams use when they don’t trust the quarterback and have to use the running game by default.
Michigan is a wild card this year. They COULD be good enough to give Ohio State a game by the time the end of the season rolls around. But there’s going to be a lot of feeling around for their game early on.
(5) Texas at Rice (+31)
Texas is going to take a huge step back this year. Just not in this game.
UCLA at Kansas State (-1.5)
Rick Neuheisel has a one or two year head start on Bill Snyder in revamping their beaten-down programs. But now this is a neck-and-neck race. UCLA is a mess at the quarterback position, though I’m sure Booter is beginning to talk himself into Kevin Prince all over again. I’m going to go with the team that has the better kicker: UCLA
7 pm ET
Washington at Brigham Young (-2)
Can the power of Jake Locker overcome mediocre teammates and the ever-powerful Mormonites? Actually, I think they do. It’s early yet, but this is going to be a calling-card game for the Huskies.
7:45 pm ET
(24) Oregon State at (6) Texas Christian (-13.5)
This has every hallmark of a Mike Riley game. He’s going to come in with a perfect game plan, get a couple of early lucky plays, and then his guys will lose close at the end, either through a missed field goal or several wasted second-half drives. It WILL happen this way. It’s what he does against great teams.
And TCU could be a truly great team, probably the best in the state of Texas. I’m excited. Hope they don’t f__k the dog in the first game. Andy Dalton for Heisman starts here, by the way.
Pick: TCU wins but doesn’t cover.
8 pm ET
(21) Louisiana State at (18) North Carolina (+8)
There is every reason to dislike the way Les Miles runs his team. Not because he’s a dick or anything, just a conservative anachronism. But with 12 UNC starters suspended for game one, all the momentum is LSU’s.
Pick: LSU wins but doesn’t cover
10 pm ET
Cincinnati at Fresno State (-2)
Cincinnati with a coach who knows exactly how to use their personnel against a defenseless Fresno State who just lost Ryan Matthews? Yeah, I’ll take the Bearcats. Thanks.
Monday, September 6, 2010
(3) Boise State at (10) Virginia Tech (+2)
Best, most important game of the weekend. I have to go with Boise State here. I think Virginia Tech is winning the ACC again, so these teams are probably going to see each other in a BCS game that isn’t the national championship. But I have to go with Boise. They have the momentum and the horses to get it done. Kellen Moore for Heisman starts here.
Pick: Boise State