Recapping last week’s Mythical Picks…
I liked Baylor/La-Monroe OVER 76. Total was 77. Yea!
I liked SMU/Texas A&M OVER 78. Total was only 55. Boo!
I liked Fresno St -3.5 over Boise St. Fresno won by only 1. Boo!
I liked Tennessee/Florida UNDER 48. The game was a Push.
I liked Kent St. +21 at Penn St. Not even close. Boo!
I liked WVU +5.5 against Maryland. WVU lost by 37. Boo!
I liked Wyoming -3.5 over Air Force. Wyoming won by 33. Yea!
I liked BYU -6.5 over Utah. Utah won outright. Boo!
I liked Utah St/USC UNDER 51. Total was 31. Yea!
I liked Utah St. +7 against USC. Utah State covered. Double Yea!!
I liked K-St./Texas OVER 59. Total was 52. Boo!
I liked Stanford -6 over Arizona St. Stanford covered. Yea!
I liked LSU-17 over Auburn. LSU won by 14. Boo!
That would have been a clearly unprofitable week had these picks been actual wagers and not Mythical Picks. The record was a less-than-mediocre 5 – 7 – 1.
Not that any reader of these rants would be inclined to do so, but that record would not entice anyone to take any information that follows and use it as the basis for making an actual wager involving actual money on an actual college football game this weekend. But just to be sure… Here is how dumb you would have to be to make real bets based on my Mythical Picks:
You probably think that talking to yourself is a way to get good advice.
The Linfield College Wildcats took a big step forward toward achieving its 58th straight winning season in football last weekend when it beat Cal Lutheran 52-14 raising their record to 2-0. Cal Lutheran came into the game ranked in the Top 25 in Division III football; Linfield clearly dominated the game. For the second week in a row, the Wildcats produced more than 600 yards on offense and only punted once in the game. Next Saturday, Linfield will do something that seems to confound some NFL teams. They will fly across the country to play Case Western Reserve in Cleveland (Eastern Time Zone) in a 1:00 PM game. The Spartans bring a 1-2 record into that game. Go Wildcats!
I want to begin this week with a comment from Greg Cote in the Miami Herald:
“The [Houston] Texans’ Arian Foster admitted he got paid while playing at Tennessee. OK, this is getting ridiculous. Let’s start assuming all college football players get paid and make it newsworthy only if they don’t.”
Can I get an AMEN!…
Two weeks ago, Michigan beat Akron at home by only 4 points and looked bad for a Top 25 team in doing so. Last week Michigan beat a mediocre UConn team by a field goal and trailed by a TD as the fourth quarter started. I am sure that some Michigan fanboys will say that the Wolverines were just not trying to run up the score on clearly undermanned opponents. I am equally sure that I would not believe a word of that…
Texas A&M beat SMU 42-14. In a way that was sort of a “letdown” game for the A&M offense. After all, they also scored 42 points the week before this game against the Alabama defense.
Texas beat Kansas State 31-21 last week giving Texas coach, Mack Brown a reprieve that will last until Texas loses its next game. This was Texas’ first win over K-State since 2003 and it ended a 2-game losing streak for the Longhorns which alums and fanboys around Austin consider cataclysmic. What happened last week was that the Texas defense showed up ready, willing and able to tackle someone wearing purple on his uniform. Tackling had been absent from the Texas defensive game plan for the last two weeks. Here is what went down in that game:
K-State ran the ball 37 times for a total of only 112 yards. Only Woody Hayes would have been satisfied with that.
Kansas State has 8 of their starters back from last year’s 11-2 team. Last year’s team did not have difficulty scoring. In 9 games last year, they put 35 points or more on the scoreboard. One of the missing starters is Collin Klein, last year’s QB. Klein was invited to the Houston Texans’’ camp this summer as an undrafted free agent but did not make the squad. However, it would seem that he was pretty valuable to K-State last year.
Alabama beat Colorado State 31-6. This game was closer than the score would indicate. Bama scored 2 TDs in the 4th quarter to salt this one away.
Florida beat Tennessee 31-17. This was an ugly game to watch for a couple of reasons:
Tennessee does not have a competent QB. They guy who started – and who stunk – had to leave the game with an injury. He will not play this week. So what? If the Vols played Tennessee Ernie Ford at QB, fans would be hard pressed to tell the difference.
Oh, by the way, Tennessee Ernie Ford has been dead for a little over 20 years now.
Florida lost their starting QB to a leg injury in the 1st quarter and he is out for the year.
In case you were wondering, the last time Tennessee actually beat Florida in a football game, the Tennessee coach was Phil Fulmer and the Florida coach was Ron Zook…
USC held Utah State QB, Chuckie Keeton, to 164 yards and the USC defense is responsible for the Trojans’ 17-14 victory. USC started 6 drives in Utah State territory in this game and managed to score only 17 points. How bad is that?
Georgia beat North Texas 45-21 and if all you saw was the final score, you might think that this game ceased to be interesting early on. Not so fast, my friend… [/Lee Corso] North Texas blocked a punt and recovered the ball for a TD early in the 3rd quarter to tie the game at 21. Earlier, North Texas had returned a kickoff for a TD. Georgia has LSU this weekend; if they do not get their special teams stuff in order, LSU is going to give them a lot more trouble than North Texas did. Georgia ran up 642 yards of offense on North Texas; they are highly unlikely to do that against LSU this week.
By the way, the mother of the LSU QB, Zach Mettenberger, is an Administrative Assistant in the Georgia Athletic Department. She has been given this week off by Georgia coach, Mark Richt. Not a bad idea…
Va Tech beat Marshall 29-21 but it took multiple OTs to achieve that result. That is interesting because the last time Marshall beat Va Tech was in 1940. That was a year before the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor… [/”Bluto” Blutarsky]
Pitt beat Duke 58-55 without the benefit of overtime periods. The Pitt QB tied an ACC record with 6 TD passes in this game. Pitt has been in the ACC for about half an hour and it is already in the conference record book.
Maryland 37 West Virginia 0. I thought Dana Holgerson was a certified “offensive genius”…
Penn State 34 Kent State 0. Kent State was held to 9 first downs in the game and 190 yards of total offense.
Baylor beat La-Monroe 70-7. Baylor led 35-0 at the end of the first quarter. Granted that Baylor has yet to play anyone of consequence (Wofford, Buffalo and La-Monroe), but they have scored 60+ points in all three of those games. The last college team to open a season with three games scoring 60 points was LSU in 1930. That was a year before:
The Star Spangled Banner became the National Anthem
Nevada legalized gambling
The Empire State Building was completed
Al Capone went to prison for tax evasion
Ernie Banks, Leonard Nimoy and Willie Mays were born
Knute Rockne, Thomas Edison and Anna Pavlova died.
Old Dominion beat The Citadel 59-58 without the benefit of overtime periods. Defense anyone? These teams combined for 1108 yards of offense; there were only 2 punts in the entire game.
Louisville squashed Florida International 72-0. FIU had all of 2 first downs in this game. Remember just a couple of year ago when FIU was in a bowl game and then the AD decided to fire Mario Cristobel as the coach? Either Cristobel was a miracle worker or the AD is a dolt. You make the call…
Georgia Tech beat UNC 28-20. UNC led 14-0 in the first quarter and looked as if they might run Tech outta town. Then the wheels came off… Georgia Tech still has Miami and Clemson on their schedule. The Yellow Jackets cannot afford to spot either of those teams 2 TDs and expect to come roaring back.
Utah beat BYU 20-13 in The Holy War. Utah only converted 1 of 14 third-down situations and still won the game. You do not see that very often…
Wyoming beat Air Force 56-23. The score was 42-17 at the half; Wyoming rang up 622 yards of offense and converted 10 of 14 third down situations. Wyoming QB, Brett Smith, is a junior and in the first four game of this season, he has accounted for 14 TDs (passing and running) and 1614 yards in the air. Last weekend his stat line was 35-41 for 373 yards plus 138 yards rushing and a rushing TD. Not a bad day at the office…
By the way, Air Force has been to bowl games in each of the last five seasons; as of today, the Falcons record is 0-3. They have not lost to cupcakes; they have lost to Utah St., Boise St. and Wyoming but they have been steamrollered in all three games. So far, the closest loss for Air Force has been by 22 points…
Here is a college football player with a great name. Crusoe Gongbay is a RB for the New Mexico Lobos. I cannot find out if he has a brother named Robinson Gongbay…
The Ponderosa Spread Games:
Last week the favorites covered in 5 of the 10 Ponderosa Spread Games.
Baylor, Louisville, Texas A&M, UCLA and Wisconsin covered.
Alabama, Georgia, Texas Tech, Vandy and Wisconsin did not cover.
The cumulative record so far this year for Ponderosa spread favorites covering stands at 17-23.
This week we have 5 Ponderosa Spread Games:
C. Michigan at NC State – 24 (52): Central Michigan is a bad team that has the attention of the SHOE Committee. All this game needs to rank as a “10” on the Misery Scale is a torrential downpour.
Miami (Oh) at Illinois – 25 (50.5): If Illinois’ hurry-up offense gets in gear synchronously, this game could be VERY ugly.
So. Miss at Boise St. -28 (56): Just a hunch, I like this game to go OVER – unless the Boise St. defense simply shuts down So. Miss and holds them to 14 points or less.
Wake Forest at Clemson – 29 (58.5): If Clemson wants to remain “relevant” in terms of BCS Championship Game consideration, they cannot beat the likes of Wake Forest by a field goal and let it go at that.
Cal at Oregon – 36 (84): New Cal coach, Sonny Dykes, loves to run an up-tempo, spread-the-field offense. It worked last year at La Tech to the point that he got to move up to the PAC-12. Here he meets a team that has been doing that kind of offense for more than a couple of games. There should be lots of scoring but it should not be close.
Games of Interest:
(Thurs Nite) Va Tech at Ga Tech – 7 (41.5): Georgia Tech QB, Vad Lee is a running QB in a system that features running the ball. Nevertheless, he has 7 TD passes already this season. How did that happen? I am not enamored with either team here but the game might be interesting to watch – without any wagering interest.
(Fri Nite) Utah St. – 9.5 at San José St. (62): I like San José St., but I think they are overmatched against the Utah St. defense here. I like this game to stay UNDER and I like Utah State to win and cover on the road.
Virginia at Pitt – 5.5 (51): Both teams give up lots of points. Heck, Pitt gave up 55 to Duke last week. I see this game going OVER.
N. Illinois – 3 at Purdue (57.5): The Big 10 Commish has to be livid at the fact that a MAC team can go to visit a Big 10 Team and be a road favorite… Remind me again; is Purdue a Leader or a Legend?
UConn at Buffalo “pick ‘em” (48.5): I would rather take two ice picks – one to each temple – than to have to watch this game.
Florida State – 21.5 at BC (52): If this game were in Tallahassee, I would feel comfortable laying this many points. FSU is really good; BC struggles to achieve “ordinary” status. Only some genuine “home cooking” or a freak snowstorm at game time is going to put this game in doubt after halftime. I like FSU to win and cover on the road.
SMU at TCU – 19 (52): This is a road game in name only for SMU; the schools are only about 30 miles apart. TCU is not nearly as good as I thought they would be this year; SMU is about as ordinary as I had thought they would be. I do not see this game as an artistic endeavor, but I do see that as an awfully fat line. I’ll take SMU plus the points here.
Iowa at Minnesota “pick ‘em” (47): This line opened with Minnesota as a 3.5-point favorite and has dropped to this level and seems to have stabilized here. Minnesota is 3-0 this year but their opposition has been New Mexico St, W. Illinois and San José St; that is NOT Murderer’s Row. Iowa is also 3-0 and while they have not beaten any team of note yet, their opponents have been slightly better than the halt and the lame. I like Iowa to win on the road here.
LSU at Georgia – 3 (61.5): This may be the best game of the weekend. LSU has been giving up a lot more points than it normally does; Georgia has been scoring more points than usual. LSU also has been scoring more than usual this year. I suspect that the spread here is a venue call; on a neutral field, these teams look pretty even to me. I like this game to go OVER.
Arizona at Washington – 10 (64): Washington started the week as a 7-point favorite and the line jumped to this level almost immediately. The Washington defense is not going to shut anyone out; the Arizona defense is not going to put the clamps on the Washington offense. I like this game to go OVER.
Ole Miss at Alabama – 14.5 (55): This game will be a significant indicator as to whether the Rebels are a “team on the rise” with their great recruiting class or if they “still got a long way to go”. They have had a week off after beating Texas to prepare for this game. The spotlight is on… I do not like that half-point hook on top of two full TDs in the spread. Therefore, I will take the game to go OVER and hope that the Ole Miss offense can get their score into the 20s here.
USC at Arizona St. – 6 (50.5): I like USC plus the points here for two reasons:
I think USC is the better team and will win outright – and –
I think this will be a low-scoring game and that taking 6 points is a good deal.
Oklahoma – 3.5 at Notre Dame (49): Last year, Notre Dame went in to Norman, OK and left with a 30-13 win over Oklahoma. If you like the “revenge angle”, you have one here. This game should be a defensive struggle; that is the signature for both of these good teams. Here is a stat that you might find interesting:
In the series between these two schools, Oklahoma’s record is 1-9. The only time Oklahoma beat Notre Dame was in 1956. Tommy McDonald was on that Oklahoma team…
This may be the best game of the weekend if the LSU/Georgia game is not. I’ll take the game to stay UNDER.
Temple – 8 at Idaho (57): The Shoe Committee has an eye on this game because Temple is 0-3 while Idaho is 0-4. No one else ought to have an eye on this game. Neither team is any good; this is not a “natural rivalry”. Neither Athletic Department wants to admit why they agreed to play this game in the first place…
Tulane at La-Monroe – 14 (57): Once again, only the SHOE Committee should have any interest at all in this game.
S. Carolina – 7 at UCF (53): I just think S. Carolina is a much better team than UCF – despite UCF’s impressive road win at Penn State. I like S. Carolina to win and cover here.
Stanford – 10 vs. Washington St. (48) [in Seattle]: Washington State has played good defense so far this year against competition far inferior to Stanford. Stanford plays tough defense – period. Given that Stanford prefers to run the ball, this could be a low scoring game if Washington State can avoid turning the ball over on short fields for the Stanford offense. Therefore, I like that generous double-digit helping of points. I’ll take Washington State plus the points.
OK St. – 18 at West Virginia (57): To date, the best descriptor for the Mountaineers’ offense would have to be “comatose”. Such is not the case with OK St. I like the Cowboys to win and cover this large number even on the road.
Wisconsin at Ohio State – 6.5 (54): If the two games involving SEC teams mentioned above or the Oklahoma/Notre Dame game are not the best games of the weekend, then this one is. If this game were in Madison with that spread, I would be all over Wisconsin; in Columbus…? Wisconsin in 1-0 in Big 10 play but this the first conference game for Ohio State. The Ohio State schedule to date has not been terrifying; none of those first four opponents has a win over a Division 1-A school this year. Since these teams are in the same division of the Big 10, this game means a lot in terms of who gets to be the Big 10 champion for 2013. Just a hunch, but I’ll take this game to stay UNDER and root for both defenses to force a whole lot of punts.
Fresno St. – 18.5 at Hawaii (59): Fresno St is back in the Top 25 for the first time in 4 years. This game will kick off at 9:00 PM Pacific Time and at midnite in the Eastern Time Zone. The only thing that can happen to Fresno St here is to lose the game and to be ignored by the media for the rest of the year. If they win – which they are most likely to do – no one will see them do it and will rely on the three paragraph “gamer” written by a stringer and sent to the local papers.
But don’t get me wrong, I love sports………