Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Week Five

As the calendar turns to October, we have a few blockbusters on the schedule this weekend.  The SEC alone has three really good ones.  We also have potential division deciding games in the Big Ten.  The “If I Were a Bettin’ Man…” portion of the blog remained on fire last week going 1-0 against the spread for a 7-1 record for the season.  Last week the blog went 6-3 straight up in national games (17-7 for the season) and 7-0 in SEC games (30-5 for the season).  Baby Cooper and I have had a little down time this week to look over the games and provide some insight to you guys.
Thursday:  7:00:  #16 South Florida @ Pittsburgh (ESPN) – South Florida goes to Pitt with their undefeated record on the line.  Pitt blew a lead against Notre Dame last week.  Despite the good performance against the Irish last week, I’m not big on Pitt or blowhard coach Todd Graham.  By the way, have you checked out South Florida’s remaining schedule?  They should be favored in every game the rest of the season.  Not that they are deserving of a national title bid, but they could be undefeated on the outside looking in at the end.  Bulls 26-20.
Friday:  7:00:  Utah State @ BYU (ESPN) – Sorry, this is all we have tonight.  Another Mormon state battle.  It’s gonna get rowdy!
Saturday: See the previous week’s blog if you don’t remember the Saturday morning routine.  After you repeat it a couple of times, you will get the hang of it. 
11:00 AM (or Big Ten kickoff time as I like to call it):  What?  Only three Big Ten kickoffs at this time this week?  What is going on here?
#18 Arkansas vs. #14 Texas A&M in Dallas (ESPN) – This game lost a lot of luster when both lost last week, but it is still a big one.  It sucks the kickoff is at 11.  Arkansas looked like a very average football team last week at Alabama.  There are probably 7 or 8 other SEC teams that could have played Bama that close last week, which is disappointing since the Hogs were expecting a much closer game.  What happened to the Aggies last week?  Did they start writing a contract to join the SEC after they got up 20-3 at the half versus Okie State?  A lot is still unknown regarding the Hogs for me.  Can they run the ball against a less talented defense than Bama?  Can the o-line block anyone?  Can the defense pressure the QB?  I think the Aggies have a better offense here (more proven all around at least), and I like the Aggies defense better too.  I am not a fan at all of Willy Robinson and have never been.  I also wonder how much weight this game carries for Petrino being in the heart of the SEC schedule and all.  It sure seemed like he didn’t care if he lost it last year although the Hogs pulled it out in the end.  So give me the newest SEC team to win here.  Gig ‘Em 34-30.
Mississippi State @ Georgia (Fox Sports South/espn3) – This is a perfect example of how quickly a team’s perception can change in a matter of a couple of weeks.  A couple of weeks back, Mississippi State was riding high after their domination of Memphis (really?).  They followed that with a loss to LSU and an overtime win versus La Tech last week.  Georgia was getting destroyed by the Georgia media and fans but wins over Coastal Carolina and Ole Miss have silenced some people (really?).  The reason I bring this up is because the line on this is Georgia -8.  I see these teams as pretty even (and middle of the road SEC teams).  I think the difference is the game is in Athens; it should be a good one.  UGA 27-24.
Northwestern @ #24 Illinois (ESPN2) – An underrated rivalry game that should have some big plays and stay close till the end.
11:21 AM Kentucky @ #1 LSU (SEC Network – ABC) – This is LSU’s first real home game (unless you really count Northwestern State).  The Cajuns will be rowdy.  How bad is Kentucky?  They should really cancel the November 5th game against Ole Miss because it will set the SEC back 15 years.  Geaux Tigers Big 45-6. 
2:30:  Five ranked teams get going at this time.
Auburn @ #10 South Carolina (CBS) – The sloppy Gamecocks continue to look…well…sloppy.  They scored another defensive touchdown last week against Vandy.  I have a feeling the luck is going to run out on them soon.  They are riding Marcus Lattimore and that is an understatement.  Auburn is flying under the radar again this week after their defense collapsed two weeks ago at Clemson.  I’m not gonna call it, but the Gamecocks better be on upset alert on Saturday.  Cocks 34-31. 
#15 Baylor at Kansas State (ABC) – The most amazing stat of this season so far – Robert Griffin has more TD passes (13) than incompletions (12).  Of course this blog expected big things from him this year because we were talking about him at the beginning of last year.  K-State went down to Miami and got a win last week that really kinda flew under the radar but was pretty impressive.  This will be a close one, but Griffin is too good.  Da Bears 28-21.
Michigan State @ Ohio State (ABC or ESPN) –This will be a big game that could help decide the divisions in the Big Ten.  I’m going with a mild upset here.  Sparty 20-19.
5:00:  #13 Clemson @ #11 Virginia Tech (ESPN2) – Don’t believe the Clemson hype.  They beat a young Auburn team with a terrible defense playing their first road game of the year and a Florida State team without their heart and soul – EJ Manuel – both at home.  They’re leaving the friendly confines for this one, and I see a comfortable Hokie win here.  Hokies 27-17. 
6:00  #17 Texas @ Iowa State (FX) – See “If I Were a Bettin’ Man…” below. 
7:00:  #3 Alabama @ #12 Florida (CBS) – See “If I Were a Bettin’ Man…” below.
#8 Nebraska @ #7 Wisconsin (ABC) – This is the first game this year between the teams I predict to play in the first Big Ten title game in December.  Both are undefeated and highly rated.  Wisconsin is a well-oiled machine now with Russell Wilson at QB.  I enjoy watching them play, and you won’t hear me say that about many Big Ten teams.  This is about the time of year Taylor Martinez becomes a shell of himself.  The Huskers will have trouble at Camp Randall.  Badgers 28-17. 
8:15:  Ole Miss @ Fresno State (ESPN2) – Oh Houston!  Who are you gonna blame this one on?  The good news is you only have 7 or fewer games left in your Ole Miss career.  Fresno 28-13.
In another SEC game not mentioned above, Tennessee wins easily.
  If I Were a Bettin’ Man…
Texas @ Iowa State (+10) – Dear Texas:  Watch out!  The Cyclones did beat you in Austin last year, and they’ve had a couple of nice wins this year (Iowa and UConn).  The Cyclones have had a week off to prepare (just like you did).  After all Longhorns, you really haven’t showed me much this year anyway.  All of a sudden, you are comfortable with Case McCoy at QB who has started a grand total of one road game.  I’ll take my chances.  Cyclones win this one straight up 21-17.
Alabama (-3.5) @ Florida – This line really amazes me.  I guess Florida has figured everything out.  The offense has a QB that is asked to not throw it farther than 10 yards because a) he can’t and b) he has no wide receivers to catch it.  So the offense basically consists of handoffs and screens to Chris Rainey and Jeff Demps.  I bet Saban has an answer for that!  I am a little worried about AJ McCarron making only his second start on the road, but he managed it at Penn State.  But he has a couple of security blankets (Richardson and Lacey).  The Florida defense is good but not to the Alabama level yet.  I will take Bama -3.5 against anyone except LSU.  Roll Tide 24-13.      
Enjoy the weekend!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Week Four

Last week the blog went 4-4 straight up in national games (11-4 for the season), 7-2 in SEC games (23-5 for the season) and had the first loss of the year going 2-1 against the spread in If I Were a Bettin’ Man (6-1 for the season).  Let’s get right to the games. 
Thursday:  7:00:  NC State @ Cincinnati (ESPN) – Sorry…it’s the only thing on.  Bearcats do have an explosive offense that is fun to watch.  Bearcats 42-24.
Friday:  7:00:  Central Florida @ BYU (ESPN) – Both teams are coming off of tough losses last week to nonconference rivals.  Two good QBs in this one with Jake Heaps at BYU and Jeff Godfrey at UCF.  I still really like UCF’s athletes.  I’ll take them in a slight upset.  Golden Knights 28-27.
Saturday: See the previous week’s blog if you don’t remember the Saturday morning routine.  After you repeat it a couple of times, you will get the hang of it. 
11:00 AM (or Big Ten kickoff time as I like to call it):  Four Big Ten kickoffs at this time this week.  Not a lot of good ones early on this week.
Notre Dame @ Pitt (ABC – KARZ in LR) – Notre Dame woke up last week beating Sparty and Pitt blew a huge 4th quarter lead at Iowa.  I just really don’t think Pitt is that good, and Notre Dame may be turning the corner a bit.  Irish 31-17. 
11:21: Georgia @ Mississippi (ABC – SEC Network) –  Ole Miss may be playing in this time slot a lot this year after the terrible display of offense last week at Vanderbilt.  We will call it the Hot Seat Bowl.  This is the type of game Houston Nutt would typically pull out when his backs against the wall.  But I think Richt needs it just as bad, and he has way better players on his side.  UGA Hairy Dogs 24-13.
WARNING:  After a less than stellar morning lineup, you need to setup as many TVs/computers as possible for the 2:30 games.  They’re gonna be some good ones so the less flipping between channels on one TV the better.
2:30:  Nine ranked teams get going at this time.
#14 Arkansas @ #3 Alabama (CBS) – The game both of these fanbases have been waiting on for a while.  Both were not very impressive last week.  The Hogs played a four quarter game with a good Sun Belt team.  Alabama blew out a really bad Sun Belt team but was only ahead 20-0 at the half.  I don’t think we learned too much from either of those games though.  Alabama’s offense and Arkansas’ defense are the two unknowns to me in this one.  I have yet to see Bama do much through the air on offense, and I haven’t seen the Hogs get a consistent pass rush or show they can defense passes in the secondary.  This game will come down to running the ball.  You gotta think Bama will get theirs on the ground with Trent Richardson and Eddie Lacy who surprisingly only has 11 less rushing yards then Richardson at this point in the season.  The Hogs’ offense, although stats have “looked” good, has not been able to consistently run against the weak defenses they have played.  I can see this as a typical Saban game.  Bama will do nothing on offense to impress but will be persistent and keep coming and wear the Hogs defense down eventually.  This could be the beginning of the end for Willy Robinson as DC at Arkansas.  I also didn’t like the pressure Troy was getting on Tyler Wilson, especially in the second half, last week.  Opponents have sacked the Hogs 7 times in 3 games.  I still think there is a learning curve for Wilson although he did well against Auburn last year, and everyone thought the Hogs wouldn’t miss a beat on offense this year.  Roll Tide 27-17. 
#11 Florida State @ #21 Clemson (ESPN) – Yabba Dabba Dabo had a “big” win last week against a terrible Auburn defense.  Florida State lost a close one to Oklahoma.  EJ Manuel is probably out for Florida State.  Clemson will have a hangover though and blow their chance of getting a leg up in the division race.  Noles 23-21.
#7 Oklahoma State @ #8 Texas A&M (ABC or ESPN) – First one to 40 wins…no seriously.  What an entertaining game this should be.  Two of the top 18 in total offense in the nation = scoreboard blowing up.  These teams are very similar to me.  I have to go with the home team.  Aggies 44-41. 
6:00:  #15 Florida @ Kentucky (ESPN) – The Gators will Chris Rainey the Wildcats to death with a bunch of 3 yard passes like they did against Tennessee.  Gators 23-14.
Vanderbilt @ #12 South Carolina (ESPN2) – So people are giving Vandy credit after a win against Ole Miss huh?  Well, it will be short-lived.  The Gamecocks have too much talent.  Cocks 31-14.
7:00:  #2 LSU @ #16 West Virginia (ABC – KARZ in LR) – See “If I Were a Bettin’ Man…” below.
Central Arkansas @ Arkansas State (ABC local) – It is such a rare occasion that any Division I football opponents  square off in this state that I have to include this game this week.  Nathan Dick is hurt for UCA, which is too bad, because it would have really been fun to see both teams go at it full strength.  Ryan Aplin and the ASU offense will be too much.  Red Wolves/Indians 38-24.
Missouri @ #1 Oklahoma (FX) – Simply put – the Sooners are really, really good this year.  Mizzou has some offense, but remember they gave up 30 to Arizona State’s mediocre offense in regulation.  Sooners 41-24.
9:15:  A couple of good PAC 12 games to get you ready for bed.
#10 Oregon @ Arizona (ESPN2) – Arizona’s defense is not good.  Oregon will put up some serious points in this one.  Quack Quack 42-28.
#23 USC @ Arizona State (ESPN) – I don’t read too much into the Sun Devils losing at Illinois last week.  They had one eye looking forward to this week’s PAC12 South showdown.  The winner likely wins the division.  USC looked good last week, but I still think they fall asleep at the wheel a little too often.  Sun Devils’ defense rises in the end for a victory.  ASU 27-24.
In other SEC games not mentioned above, Mississippi State and Auburn win easily.
  If I Were a Bettin’ Man… - I can’t find much this week, so I am only going with one game.
LSU (-5.5) @ West Virginia Break out the Mountain Dew, whisky, gumbo and couches to burn.  It is two of the most rabid fanbases in the nation getting together on a Saturday night in West Virginia for a nonconference matchup that West Virginia fans have been talking about for months thinking they have a chance to win.  West Virginia fans will be pumped for this one until the LSU defense takes the field.  LSU has given up 143 total rushing yards in 3 games to teams whose average combined rushing yards per game last year was 652 yards.  They are stopping the run, the pass, and anything else an offense tries to do.  West Virginia’s offense ran for 102 yards on Norfolk State (averaging 3 yards a carry) – yes that is not a misprint.  They followed that up with 92 yards and another 3 yards a carry versus Maryland last week.  Geno Smith threw the ball 49 times last week.  Prediction: If Geno drops back to throw 49 times this week, he: a) may not survive the game because of the beating he will take and b) will get picked a few times with the magnificent defensive backs that LSU has.  That unit is deep and far more talented than anything Geno has ever seen.  Geaux Tigers 28-13.    
Enjoy the weekend!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Week Three

All eyes are on the state of Florida in Week Three.  Six universities who have won a national title in the BCS era will be taking the field in Florida this week with Ohio State at Miami, Tennessee at Florida and Oklahoma at Florida State.  The blog continued on its hot streak last week going 3-0 straight up in national games (7-0 for the season), 8-2 in SEC games (16-3 for the season) and 2-0 against the spread in If I Were a Bettin’ Man (4-0 for the season). 
Thursday:  7:00:  #3 LSU @ #25 Mississippi State (ESPN) – See “If I were a bettin man…” below.
Friday:  7:00:  Man, I love that there are Friday night games every week now.  This week we have two at the same time.  
#4 Boise State @ Toledo (ESPN) – Watch out Boise – it’s hard to come out of the Glass Bowl alive.  Toledo is riding high after their moral victory against Ohio State last week.  Boise still pulls it out.  The Guys With the Blue Field 34-23.
Iowa State @ Connecticut (ESPN2) – The Cyclones upset Iowa last week in its annual rivalry game.  UConn has to be very upset they lost to Vandy last week.  I know I would be.
Saturday: See the previous week’s blog if you don’t remember the Saturday morning routine.  After you repeat it a couple of times, you will get the hang of it. 
11:00 AM (or Big Ten kickoff time as I like to call it):  Only 4 Big Ten kickoffs at this time this week.  I can see the idea of a night game getting all the Big Ten teams excited after last week’s Michigan game.  We are going to switch it up this week on the 11:00 games.  Instead of spending 7 minutes each on three games, I think the 11:00 hour is worthy of breaking out the laptop or other TV so you can watch…
#18 West Virginia @ Maryland (ESPNU) – Classic letdown game hear for West Virginia.  The Mountaineers are on the road, playing LSU at home next week, and Maryland has had almost two weeks to prepare after their Labor Day night win versus Miami.  Should be a good matchup of QBs:  Danny O’Brien and Geno Smith.  I’m still not sold on the Mountaineers or any team in the Big East for that matter.  The Terps start out 2-0 with another big home win.  Terps 24-20.
#21 Auburn @ Clemson (ABC) – How in the world does Auburn keep winning?  How in the world is Dabo Swinney still coaching at Clemson?  This is a tough one.  Who do you go with here - a young Auburn team with a bad defense on the road for the first time or a young QB and a team that struggled with Wofford at home last week with a reputation of underachieving?  Remember that Clemson gave Auburn all they wanted on the plains last year before blowing the game and losing in overtime.  The teams are a lot a like – I’ll go with the team that has been trying to lose but can’t seem to do it.  The Tigers of the Auburn variety 23-21. 
11:21: Mississippi @ Vanderbilt (ABC – SEC Network) –  Remember when Houston Nutt publicly said he was ready for Vandy to roll on the schedule when he was at Arkansas and then lost to them at home the year they came on the schedule and then almost lost to them in Nashville the next year?  Now that was funny!  What a goober.  Well at Ole Miss he gets to face them every year, and this may be his only shot to pick up an SEC win this year.  I think both of these teams are really bad, so I will go with the home team.  Commodores 17-14 in the worst SEC game of the year.
12:30:  Colorado vs. Colorado State in Denver (Fox Sports Net) – A very underrated rivalry game.
2:30:  Six ranked teams get going at this time.
#15 Michigan State @ Notre Dame (NBC) – See “If I were a bettin man…” below.
Tennessee @ #16 Florida (CBS) – This rivalry game kicks off the CBS SEC season once again.  If you don’t know me, you may not know that I despise the Gators.  Being a Vol fan, they have caused a lot of heartache for me through the years.  There is a reason I drink Powerade instead of Gatorade.  There is a reason I enjoy watching Tebow roll third string on the Broncos right now.  There is a reason my hate for Spurrier continued when he took the South Carolina job.  Most of my hate for the Gators is due to the Vols inability to win in the Swamp.  The Vols are 2-8 in the Swamp since 1991.  They have lost every way imaginable.  That brings us to 2011.  Florida has a new coaching staff led by Will Muschamp and Charlie “Ate the Chocolate Factory” Weis.  They have outscored their overmatched opponents 80-3 so far this year.  The Vols scorched a respectable opponent last week (Cincinnati) with Tyler Bray, Da’Rick Rogers, and Justin Hunter breaking records on a weekly basis so far this year.  The Vols haven’t faced a defensive line like the one the Gators will bring Saturday though although the secondary is young and many Gator fans are concerned about that versus the aforementioned Vol trio.  Weis is doing what he can with Brantley, Demps, Rainey, etc. on offense.  Surprisingly, they have become a running team so far this year.  They ran the ball 55 out of 75 offensive plays last week versus UAB.  The team that rushes for the most yards has won this game 8 straight years and 20 out of 21.  I think the Vols will hang around and scare the Gators, but in the end, the Gators bust a long run or two with Rainey.  I expect the Gators d-line to get some pressure on Bray too.  The Gators will do just enough to beat the Vols in the Swamp (as usual).  It should be a high scoring affair.  Gators 30-27.
#23 Texas @ UCLA (ABC or ESPN) – Is this a future conference opponent for the Longhorns?  The Longhorns now have a QB controversy, but UCLA has had no QB since Neuheisel got to UCLA.  Horns 6 field goals, UCLA 5 field goals.
3:00:  Arkansas State @ #13 Virginia Tech ( – I gotta give the Red Wolves some love after the 47-3 beatdown of Memphis last week.  The Red Wolves may have a better offense than Virginia Tech…BUT it’s at Blacksburg and it’s the Hokies. 
5:00 Navy @ #10 South Carolina (ESPN2) –   See “If I were a bettin man…” below.
6:00 Louisville @ Kentucky (ESPNU) – Don’t waste your time watching this one.  Get something done around the house before you watch this trainwreck.  Wildcats 8-3.
6:30:  #17 Ohio State @ Miami (FL) (ESPN) – The Probation Bowl.  I really cannot keep up with who is eligible to play in this game (and that goes for both teams).  I’m going with Ohio State because their defense is still strong, and I think Miami has already given up on their season.  Buckeyes 21-20.
7:00:  #1 Oklahoma @ #5 Florida State (ABC) – The showdown of the week has arrived.  Are the Noles ready for primetime or are they just a good ACC team wishing to be a national contender?  The Noles have outscored their two bad opponents 96-10 the first two games of the season.  Oklahoma dominated an overrated Tulsa team in Norman the first week of the year and then took a week off to get ready for this game.  Doak will be rocking for this one as the Noles try to avenge the 47-17 beatdown in Norman last year.  We all know about the Oklahoma offense led by Landry Jones.  Will EJ Manuel and the Florida State offense be able to keep up?  I like the Noles defense a little bit more than the Sooners, but I like the Sooners offense more.  I think when it comes down to it, the Sooners have played in these games and will be ready for this one.  The Noles aren’t quite there…yet.  It won’t be long though.  You definitely want to watch this one though.  It will be full of speed, athleticism, big plays, and hard hits.  This will be a classic.  Boomer Sooner pulls away late 38-27.
If you need another game on during this one, try these…
8:15:  Utah @ BYU (ESPN2) – The Holy War.  What a great rivalry between a bunch of crazy Mormons.  I wonder if they serve caffeinated beverages at the game, especially since it is a night game.  Should be a good game though.  The home team has won the last four.  Give me the Cougars 31-28.
9:00: #8 Oklahoma State @ Tulsa (Fox Sports Net) – A decent rivalry game that could get interesting because it is a late game in Tulsa with Okie State looking forward to Texas A&M next week.  The Cowboys pull it off though.   
9:45: #6 Stanford @ Arizona (ESPN) – Stanford’s first decent challenge of the year.  Crazy things happen at night games in Tucson.  The Cardinal better come ready to play.  Andrew Luck will be too much for a defense that gave up almost 400 yards passing to Brandon Weeden and Okie State last week.  Stanford 35-24.
In other SEC games not mentioned above, Arkansas and Alabama win in preparation for their showdown next weekend, and Georgia wins their first game of the year.
  If I Were a Bettin’ Man… - I’m getting a little cocky now since this segment is 4-0 the first two weeks.  I’m going three games this week.  I’m sure this will be the kiss of death.
LSU (-3.5) @ Mississippi State I finally gave Mississippi State some love last week and picked them to beat Auburn after I have blew them off saying they were a pretender for over a year now.  I’ve learned my lesson.  I was right in the first place.  Do you know what Dan Mullen’s record is against the SEC West during his 2+ years in Stark-vegas?  2-9.  Do you know who the 2 wins are against?  You guessed it – OLE MISS.  He hasn’t defeated another team from the West.  I think LSU’s defense shuts down that powerful run game and makes Chris Relf beat them with his arm, which is not gonna happen with the all-world defensive backfield that the Tigers field.  The Cowbells will keep it close for most of the game, but the Tigers take care of business in the end.  Tigers 26-16.
Michigan State (+5) @ Notre Dame – I won’t keep you long on this one.  Michigan State is at least a touchdown better than South Florida and Michigan – the two teams to beat the Irish this year.  This line makes no sense at all.  Vegas has to be playing the law of averages here thinking the Irish will pull one of these games out sooner or later.  I don’t think it happens this week because Sparty is tough.  Sparty 35-31.
Navy (+17) @ South Carolina – I describe South Carolina with one word this year – sloppy.  The second word I would use would be lucky.  They have turned the ball over 7 times in two games this year but also have 7 takeaways.  They have scored 14 touchdowns in two games this year, including 1 by fake punt, 1 interception return, 2 fumble returns, and 1 punt return.  This doesn’t include another fumble return that resulted in a five yard scoring drive.  The Gamecocks have only had 5 TD drives of over 50 yards, which is not a lot when you consider they have scored 101 points this year.  In total the Gamecocks have been outgained in their two games this year.  So the defense hasn’t been as dominate as they thought they would be up to this point.  Now we move to this game.  Navy is a team with a bunch of underachieving, less athletic players who use the triple option as the ultimate equalizer against the superior teams, such as South Carolina.  The Gamecocks will have no respect for these guys partly because they are still patting themselves on the back from the Georgia win.  The Gamecocks have shown how undisciplined they can be with the stats I have presented above.  On top of that, they have a week to prepare for an option that they will not need to game plan for again this season.  Did I mention that Navy has ran for an average of 400 yards a game this year?  This, my friends, is why 17 points is too much.  Gamecocks 38-34.     
Enjoy the weekend!


Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Week Two - A Viewer's Guide

Week Two is here and there are a few good games, but I am ready for next weekend, which will likely be the first huge weekend.  The blog started out great last week going 4-0 straight up in national games, 8-1 straight up in SEC games (lost the HDN game once again!) and 2-0 against the spread in "If I Were a Bettin’ Man..." picks.  Let’s keep it goin.
Thursday:  7:00:  Arizona @ #9 Oklahoma State (ESPN) – This is a rematch of last year’s Alamo Bowl, which Okie State dominated 36-10.  Mike “I’m a Man, I’m 40” Gundy is hosting Nick Foles and the Wildcats in Stillwater this time.  The home crowd will be wild tomorrow night.  Brandon Weeden and Justin Blackmon get a lot of love, but I think Foles deserves a little credit.  He has led the Wildcats to back-to back bowls.  In the season opener last week, he passed for over 400 yards and 5 TDs.  He deserves some respect, but all of that being said, the Cowboys will be too much.  Okie St. 41-33.
Friday:  9:30:  Missouri @ Arizona State (ESPN) – You’re gonna have to stay up late for this one kiddos.  My boy Vontaze Burfict will be looking to lay some licks on the Mizzou Tigers.  Missouri doesn’t have Blaine Gabbert anymore, and the Tigers struggled scoring only 17 at home against Miami (OH) last week.  The Sun Devils offense will continue to develop this night as the defense shuts Mizzou down.  ASU 20-7.
Saturday: See the previous week’s blog if you don’t remember the Saturday morning routine.  After you repeat it a couple of times, you will get the hang of it.  Straight to the games…
11:00 AM (or Big Ten kickoff time as I like to call it):  That’s right there are 5 Big Ten kickoffs at this time once again.  Spend 7 minutes each on the following games: Iowa @ Iowa State (Fox Sports), Oregon “Did We Really Lose to Sac St.” State @ #8 Wisconsin (ESPN), and Central Michigan @ Kentucky (ESPNU).  Kentucky wins 14-11 although they are “Vandy bad” this year.  After you spend 7 minutes each on these, time to change the channel again to the best game of the morning. 
11:21 AM: #16 Mississippi State @ Auburn (ABC – SEC Network) –  Did the War Eagles really roll Toomer’s Corner after the big Utah State win?  Maybe it was a symbolic roll since the Bammers tried to kill the trees last year.  Anyway, some of the main characters in the Cam Newton Saga from last year are on the same field for the first time since the story broke.  That should add to the suspense of the game.  I’m sure Dan Mullen would like to run it up on Tigers if he can.  Auburn is hoping that another last minute victory is in the devil’s plans this week.  Once again the Bulldogs won a game they were supposed to last week against a Memphis team that is now 15 point underdogs to Arkansas State this week (WOW).  We all know what the Aubie did.  Something tells me Auburn will play a lot better this week; they have no choice, do they?  I’m not expecting the Mississippi State beatdown that a lot of people are predicting, but I think they do sneak out with a win because the Auburn defense is SO bad.  Cowbells 34-27.
2:30:  Five ranked teams get going at this time.
#6 Stanford @ Duke (ESPNU) – See “If I were a bettin man…” below.
Cincinnati @ Tennessee (ESPN2) – This will be a game with a lot of explosive plays.  Cincy put up 72 last week; Tyler Bray’s first two passes last week were for 47 and 81-yard touchdown passes.  With Zach Collaros, Isaiah Pead (I. Pead for short), DJ Woods, Tyler Bray, Da’Rick Rogers, Justin Hunter, and Tauren Poole taking the field, you can quickly tell this game is going to be all offense.  With this defense optional game, I will go with the home team and the team with (maybe) a little more firepower.  Vols 34-31.
#3 Alabama @ #23 Penn State (ABC) – A huge nonconference matchup at State College, PA!  #6 in all-time wins Penn State versus #8 all-time Alabama.  The Tide had a 5 turnover game last week while Penn State forced 3.  Not an ideal situation for a young offense like Bama’s.  The good news is the defense is incredible.  The Crimson Tide find a way to get it done because I do not see Penn State scoring much on Bama.  This game will be a grinder.  Alabama 17-10.
3:30:  #12 South Carolina @ Georgia (ESPN) – This will be the time of day you need to get the computer/extra TV going for sure.  This game has turned huge for Mark Richt in a matter of days once the Bulldogs were manhandled by Boise State last Saturday.  Many (including myself) think this game could decide the SEC East, but I would like to backtrack on that a little because if Georgia plays like they did last week, they won’t finish in the top half of the east this year.  I usually give Richt the benefit of the doubt here and say he pulls it out, but the Gamecocks have too many weapons and the Bulldogs have no bite on either side of the ball.  Rumor is that QB Aaron Murray may have some real issues with his ribs after Boise roughed him up last week, which would be even worse for Georgia if true.  Although really sloppy last week, the Gamecocks pull it out between the hedges 24-17. 
6:30:  Utah @ Southern Cal (Versus) – See “If I were a bettin man…” below.
7:00 PM:  Notre Dame @ Michigan (ESPN) – The Michigan Wolverines, one of the self-proclaimed founders of college football and winningest program of all-time, were finally able to afford lights for their football field.  They will host their first night game in the Big House Saturday night against who else but Notre Dame.  Both teams will be wearing some cool throwback uniforms for this game too.  Michigan won a lightning-shortened game last week, while Notre Dame was “upset” although this blog told them to watch out for South Florida.  The Irish moved the ball but turned it over deep in opposing territory several times.  Brian Kelly’s head almost blew up in the meantime (  Kelly named Tommy Rees starter this week after Dayne Crist did not get it done last week.  Based on Notre Dame's dismal performance last week and the huge home-field advantage the Wolverines will have this game, I do not see how Michigan loses this one – especially with Shoelace still at QB.  Somehow Notre Dame is favored in this one but give me Meeechigan 31-27. 
In other SEC games not mentioned above, Ole Miss, Arkansas, Florida, and LSU roll against some dismal competition and Vandy can’t quite get over the hump versus Connecticut.
 If I Were a Bettin’ Man…
Stanford (-21) @ Duke – Stanford rolled over San Jose State 57-3 last week at home.  The Cardinal are playing a team comparable to the one they just beat on the road in Duke.  The Blue Devils are coming off of a nail-biter home loss against Richmond (YES, RICHMOND) 23-21.  Did you realize the best QB in the nation Andrew Luck plays for Stanford?  This is gonna be a lot like when Alabama rolled into Durham last year and was up 35-3 in the first 20 minutes of a 62-13 win.  Take the Cardinal really big!
Utah (+9.5) @ Southern Cal – Lane Kiffin led his troops to an inspiring 2 point win at home against maybe the worst Big Ten team this year (Minnesota).  Utah is playing their first PAC 12 game ever and will definitely be pumped for the occasion.  They have a veteran team that will not be scared of the environment.  Once again, USC is just playing for their NFL futures with another uninspired effort.  The Utes show will give the Trojans all they want.
Enjoy the weekend and remember War Memorial tailgaters - only you can prevent the girl/white trash fights!