Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Weekly Picks

West Virginia 30, SoFla 23 - I've closed the gap in the score a little here. I do like Holgo's offense over the Bulls' D, but it's the Big East. And I never trust my gut with the Big East.

Northern Illinois 38, Ohio 34 - I know the Huskies are favored, but I also don't like counting Solich out here. The more I think about it, though, the more I like this game turning into a shootout. And the Bobcats aren't beating the boys from the 'Burbs in a shootout.

Oregon 49, UCLA 10 - Yep, I changed the score in this one, too. The Bruins have been granted some amnesty for mediocrity, with the NCAA approving UCLA's bowl petition waiver. This means the Bruins can go bowling because they did win 6 games...even though they'll likely have a losing record after this CG. So, just like last week, with nothing to play for, look for the Bruins to come out flat and get even flatter by the fourth quarter. If that 50-0 shellacking they took from SC is any indicator, it'll be a long night for the boys in baby blue. I know it sounds insane with a spread as big as 31, but take the Ducks to cover.
Houston 31, So. Miss 21 - I hope the Cougs don't get too cocky. Keenum is rewriting all the record books and he and Patrick Edwards might be a better tandem than Wheeden-Blackmon. But that won't overcome hubris and we've seen Sumlin's team suffer from that a time or two this season. If Houston comes out as focused as they did last week against Tulsa, they'll make short work of the Eagles. But, I think they've got BCS bowl bids dancing in their eyes, and it'll be a quarter or two before they snap out of it.

Pitt 25, Syracuse 24 - Narrowed the score here a bit, too. BIG EAST FOOTBAW.

Texas 29, Baylor 27 - Griffin's probable, and his recovery gives me pause, but something about this Texas team, and this league in general, make me feel something wacky in the wind.

This crazy sumbitch should probably be COTY.
LSU 34, Georgia 17 - I hate typing this. But I know, if any other team were playing LSU here, I'd call for the Bayou Bengals to win, no questions asked. Instead, the Tigers are playing my team, and that does, I hate to admit, give me some Homer-ish pause. There are a hundred ways Georgia could win this game, and I will be thrilled if they did - and maybe not that surprised - but, I just can't, in good conscience, call for the upset of a team as good as this LSU squad. They've efficiently dispatched highly ranked foes all season long, and won a toe-to-toe slugfest with Alabama in T-town. True, Georgia's won 10-straight, has a top-10 defense, and should not be overlooked. But the Tigers have won 13-straight, have the number two defense, and a top-20 run game. I'll be pulling for the Dawgs with every ounce of my being, but I won't be laying any money down.

Oklahoma 34, OK State 26 - The Sooners take Bedlam. It'll be a rough night for Poke fans; they'll say goodbye to Blackmon before the game and then watch their outside BCS title shot fade away in the next three quarters. Yes, there will be big plays from Wheedon to Blackmon, but not enough to push State by their in-state rivals.

VA Tech 27, Clemson 24 - Take the points, but don't doubt the Hokies. Clemson's faltering, losing three of four, and Tech seems a lot more confident now than they did in September. I know there's a lot of athleticism on this Tigers squad, especially offensively with Boyd and Watkins, but they didn't really call down the lightning against Georgia Tech, NC State, or South Carolina and I don't see them finding it this weekend against the surging Hokies. Side note: How empty will the stands in Charlotte be this year?

Wisconsin 34, Michigan State 20 - No Hail Marys this time. Sparty does have a great D...and they're gonna need it against Montee Ball and Russell Wilson. I just can't see the Badgers coming into this one unfocused and sloppy again. Rather, I see them rolling in pissed off and ready to prove a point. Wilson might use this as a stage for some last-minute Heisman love, or Ball might use to tack onto his staggering TD tally (29!), or both.

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