Well what an interesting week of football we just had. The Nittany Lions who prepare every week like they are playing Akron ran into “The” Ohio State University and came away with the L. They controlled the game early but slowly let it slip away. They also failed to feed Barkley the ball which was baffling. Penn state is on the outside looking in now as they are not going to have one signature win on the resume at season’s end.
My Irish handled business yet again and other than a slow start they proved they were a more physical team than NC State. The improvement on defense is really how you can tell Notre Dame is legit. Then we had the Cyclones of Iowa State taking down their second Top 5 team of the season in TCU. The Trill was held scoreless on offense and luckily for Oklahoma the Cyclones keep making that loss a few weeks ago look better and better each week.
The state schools of Florida are in some trouble. Florida State got caught stealing from the candy bowl and Boston College spanked them REAL good for it. Then Florida forgot they were playing a rivalry game and were trampled by Georgia resulting in their coach getting fired (although other factors were involved). Just a bad day overall for the ‘Noles and Gators.
Butch Jones done did it again and lost to Kentucky. I really have said all I need to about him this season.
The Pac 12 was interesting as well. A Bryce Loveless Stanford barely squeaked by Oregon State which was an eye opener. USC bounced back from the Notre Dame trouncing to blast Arizona State and then Rich Rod told Mike Leach to move over because he has the top offense in town now. I must admit The ‘Cats are far exceeding my expectations for this season. Good for you Rich Rod.
Now it is off to the SEVEN Top 25 matchups this week. Can’t wait for the carnage on Saturday. Elimination games everywhere.
Game Of The Week
#11 Oklahoma State (-2.5) vs #5 Oklahoma
Bedlam is an elimination game for sure as two losses is almost a nail in your playoff coffin and it should be. I like the Cowboys here by 6 points as they have the better defense and they are at home. The Sooners just have too many weaknesses for me and have not looked good since the Ohio State game. Expect a shootout in the mid 30’s this weekend. It could be decided on the last possession.
Top 25 Battles
#13 Virginia Tech (-2.5) vs #10 Miami
So the talk this week has been how hard the wise guys bet on Tech when this line opened as Miami was originally favored. To be honest I think the Hokies should be the favorite as Miami has been squeaking by teams all season. Still that speaks to good coaching as well coached teams find a way to win and badly coached teams find a way to lose so kudos to Mark Richt. I think their luck runs out this week as Justin Fuente’s squad gets it done in another tight 4 point game. Gobble Gobble.
#2 Alabama (-21) vs #19 LSU
The committee putting Bama at #2 is just what the doctor ordered for Saban’s crew. He may say they don’t hear it but you damn well know these kids do and they won’t take kindly to it. I think the number is spot on and the Tide wins by 3 touchdowns. Danny Etling can’t do anything against a good defense.
#4 Clemson (-7.5) vs #20 NC State
This looks to be a tight matchup and I have this one right on the number as well. The Irish showed some of NC State’s weaknesses and if Clemson can commit to the run they will get out of this game with a 7 point victory.
#7 Penn State (-9.5) vs #24 Michigan State
LOVE Penn State at this number. I see them coming out guns a blazin against Sparty and whoopin them by 3 TD’s. If Penn State won last week they would easily be a 14 point favorite here and Michigan State will finally get exposed this weekend. Still this win won’t help Penn State as Sparty probably won’t find its way back into the Top 25 as they still have Ohio State on the docket.
#17 USC (-7.5) vs #22 Arizona
I can’t get a good read on this game. Everything screams that Zona is rolling but I just can’t get myself to buy them yet. My gut says USC by 10 but that may be totally wrong. Keep your eyes on this one folks.
#25 Washington State (-2.5) vs #21 Stanford
Bryce Love is a game-time decision which means I have no idea who to pick in this one. If Love plays its Stanford all day. If he doesn’t Stanford proved they can’t move the ball without him. My pick is Stanford if Love plays and Wazzu if he doesn’t. I know thats kind of lame but oh well.
Blue & Gold
#3 Notre Dame (-13) vs Wake Forest
Not gonna lie this game scares me a little. Wake is solid on both sides of the ball but ultimately my Irish prevail by 10 points. I see this game being tight into the 4th quarter but Josh Adams breaks one late to secure the victory. The Irish keep the momentum rolling.
There’s nothing wrong with being average right? Works for me. A 2-3 week got us back to .500 but I’ve got a 4-1 feeling working this weekend. I really like these lines and think a bounce back is in the works.
Against The Spread
PENN STATE (-9.5) vs Michigan State
FLORIDA (+3) vs Missouri
NORTHWESTERN (+1) vs Nebraska
MINNESOTA (+15.5) vs Michigan
Teaser – 6 Points
IOWA STATE (+8.5/+2.5) vs West Virginia
NC STATE (+13.5/+7.5) vs Clemson
It’s always hard taking so many teams catching points but they just all looked too good. Florida scares me a little but teams usually play fired up the first game with an interim coach and Missouri’s defense is so bad even Malik Zaire can move the ball against them. Penn State rolls after last weeks collapse and I actually like Iowa State to win outright.
**Bonus play** If your feeling squirrely: Penn State, Florida & Iowa State on the money line parlay. 6-1 odds will get you a nice little payday if it hits and I think it is a realistic one at that…..or at least that is what I was thinking when I put it in.