Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Blathering Incoherently?

Today is thick with irony. My noble and worthy comrade NastyB suggested that we "shut up and enjoy the season like gentlemen" instead of pointing to how much Michigan and Ohio State beat common opponents by. The one thing I never got the answer to is "don't confuse the issue," which implies that there is a real issue somewhere in there?

If I ever hear the "real issue" perhaps I can stop confusing it with my fake issue.

At any rate, as I prepare to heed my friendly colleague's advice, it is a tad bit ironic to implore me to "shut up and enjoy the season like gentlemen" while calling your number one ranked opponent "Bumpkins."

If calling fans of your rivals "Bumpkins" while posting hilarious videos of them is being a gentleman, then I'd rather be an incoherently blathering idiot.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Buckeyes + Pumpkins = Bumpkins

How do Ohio Bumpkins amuse themselves this time of year? By dropping a 900 pound pumpkin on a Michigan minivan of course!

Happy Halloween!

Betting Post Mortem and Rock Paper Scissors (It All Makes Sense)

I'm not sure if anyone followed along at home, but on a whim of stupidity I decided to overlook the fact that Stewart Mandel is a mealy wimp with Cheetoes-stains on his t-shirt and bought into his picks to inform my bets for the weekend. (I should have given more creedence to the alarm sounding in my head once I noticed his uncanny resemblence to Jared from the Subway commericals.)

Here's what I took.

Missouri -1.5 at home against Oklahoma
UCLA -1.5 at home against Washington State
Florida -13.5 against Georgia
Georgia Tech -5 at home against Miami
Texas Tech +10.5 at home against Texas

And after going 2/5 and finishing down in the money sector, here's what I'll take away: nobody's got a fucking clue how a game's going to play out. From here on out I'm going with my gut. That's the same gut that said the Trojan's were in trouble, and the same gut that says Switter's "analysis" of the "numbers" pertinent to Ohio State/Michigan (below) is about as well researched as the skidmarks in his underwear.

Or, the Bush Administration's reasoning for starting the Iraq War as Dave at Michigan points out:

As recently as Monday, Cheney said in a speech that Hussein "had long-established ties with Al Qaeda."...later that year, "We have never claimed that Saddam Hussein had either direction or control of 9/11."

We've seen this tactic before; stop trying to confuse the issue.

Looking at how teams did against common opponents (particularly when they are all victories) is just silly...pointing to it at all is confusing a comparison of two teams. Is there any difference, at all, between beating a team by 21 or 14? What about playing two of the three games you mentioned w/o your best offensive weapon? 2 of the three on the road? It just makes me sad to see a once proud college football blog, like collegefootball.blogspot
.michiganosu.blog.blog denegrated with such Corsoian analysis.

It only stings because it's true.

The transitive property doesn't even work in Rock Paper Scissors. Try it for yourself: paper beats rock, and rock beats scissors, so paper should have no problem mopping the floor with scissors right? We know how this game ends.

Admittedly, Rock Paper Scissors is a much simpler game than college football (it's purely logical for instance), but we can still glean something from its simplicity. There's always a paper to someone's rock, a scissors to someone's paper and a rock to someone's scissors.

Knowing this, we can continue to make excuses or elementary comparisons like four year olds matching the right shape with the right hole, or we can shut up and enjoy the season like gentlemen. This is a complicated world, with complicated complications complicating the outcomes of football games. The Game is coming and will be decided on the field where we will see the simplicity emerge, who is rock and who is paper. Any of our conjecture in the meantime is just a way to fend off our own insecurities (assuming we have any).

So I say to Switters, stop blathering incoherently as a way to deal with your fear.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Ohio State and Michigan by the Numbers

At this point in the season, Ohio State and Michigan are believed to be two of the best teams in the country, if not the best two.

The only real comparison we can make right now, and I'm not saying it's a fair one, is to look at the scores of the common teams played within the Big Ten. The three common opponents at this point in the season are Penn State, Iowa, and Minnesota.

Michigan beat Penn State by 7
Ohio State beat Penn State by 22

Michigan beat Iowa by 14
Ohio State beat Iowa by 21

Michigan beat Minnesota by 14
Ohio State beat Minnesota by 44

Certainly food for thought.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Betting on Football

After going with my gut on Clemson last night and being thoroughly embarrassed, I'm testing out a new strategy this weekend. Rather than follow my own misguided hunches and biased reasoning, I'm going to put my money where Stewart Mandel's mouth is. Each week he posts his picks on SI. This week, I'm going to look at these lines and see where his picks coincide with money-winning spreads or covers and bet on each of those games.

To wit, here are my bets for this weekend:

Missouri -1.5 at home against Oklahoma X
UCLA -1.5 at home against Washington State
Florida -13.5 against Georgia X
Georgia Tech -5 at home against Miami X
Texas Tech +10.5 at home against Texas X

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Hype City

Tickets to The Game are maxing out at just under $5,000 for a good seat and averaging around $858 for a nosebleed special on StubHub. In the linked article above, the Detroit News is reporting that this ticket is a good $200 more than World Series tickets and rising toward the $1000 average set by last year's BCS Championship game between USC and Texas.

The fact that The Game is still over three weeks away makes you wonder what astronomical prices the tickets could hit and fuels the argument that Michigan - Ohio State is the greatest rivalry in sports.

It also makes me lament the current state of attending live events, whether sports or music or Wicked the Wizard of Oz Musical. Ticket resellers, thanks to the connective power of the Internet are ripping people off to untold profits above face value.

To some degree this is market-driven. By expanding the number of people who can get a chance to see an event beyond season-ticket holders or those who sleep outside the box office, Internet resellers have expanded the market and given some folks an opportunity to see something they would otherwise have missed. But they'll have to pay for it. And there's the sinister side. At prices like these, even dedicated fans must consider selling out for a quick buck, or five thousand. Hey, you'd probably see the action better at home anyway with your new flat panel plasma screen tv.

I try not to take the stump much, especially on a blog about a happy subject like football, but I want to call your attention to a new force that's threatening this already unfair situation. Simply said, something's got to be done about Ticketmaster, the original event ticket middle man. Currently Ticketmaster is lobbying state governements to make any ticket sold at $1 or more above face value in the secondary market illegal unless it was resold by an issuer with a contract with the event's organizer (like an NFL team or music venue). As a primary market vendor, Ticketmaster already maintains exclusive rights to many of these relationships, while Stubhub, Craigslist and others do not. With the simple signing of a bill, that Ticketmaster is promoting as in the interest of ticket buyers, Ticketmaster could wipe out the competition even before it enters the secondary ticket market.

Think monopoly, price fixing and rampant 'convenience' fees.

Read on for the details and to get enraged!

(Especially if you live in New York, Florida or Massachusetts. I'm sorry Connecticut and Louisiana, you've already been sold out by your Legislatures.)

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Week 9: Yes

The main story this week is that Michigan has arrived undefeated after the perilous stretch of its schedule and looks prepared to march into Columbus at 11-0 and take on a worthy Ohio State team for the Big Ten Championship and a berth in the National Championship game. If you subscribe to the theory that these are the two best teams in the country, and that the opponent of the winner of this game will roll over like a two bit whore in the Nat’l Championship game for a Big Ten ass pounding, November 18 in C’bus figures to be game, set and match point for this year’s edition of NCAA football. After all, it should be BCS #1 vs. BCS #2.

But then we could also follow the crazy advice of Tony Kornheiser and Michael Wilbon who said recently on PTI that if The Game comes down to the wire and is won by an act of improbability in the waning seconds, that they should let The Game be more than the de facto National Championship game, and make it a precursor to a rematch of the two best teams in the country again, for the actual National Championship a month later.

There’s an idea. And for now I don’t completely reject it because the way these two teams are playing, neither deserves to lose. And if a one-loss team has to go to the National Championship game, it might as well be one of these two should the cards play out that way. There's also an outside chance the BCS computers in their curious mix of insouciance and digitized wisdom could come to the same conclusion, maintaining a #1 and #2 ranking for Ohio State and Michigan even after The Game. This is of course contingent on some other teams losing, but I think we'll get there and live through some strange days in BCS land.

Next I've got to hand it to Boise State. With four games left in their season they are 8-0 with the darkest of dark horse Heisman candidates in Ian Johnson and sitting pretty at #15 in the BCS standings. They only have to move up three more spots to #12 and they are guaranteed a BCS berth (in a loophole only a little less fair than Notre Dame's BCS agreement). The remaining schedule is about as soft in the middle as a cream puff, and so ESPN has projected the Broncos to win out and meet up with Texas in the Fiesta Bowl. Here Boise State would get the crack at a true national power for the first time since its program-rattling loss at Georgia back in September 2005. Meanwhile, ESPN is projecting the fallen Hurricanes of Miami, who, like Texas, have won a National Championship this decade, to take State’s obligatory spot in the MPC Bowl. Remember this used to be the Humanitarian Bowl, but for Miami to show up in mid-winter in Boise, I think the Humiliation Bowl would be a more appropriate name and a fitting end to the kind of season they’ve had.

Speaking of wayward Floridian former powerhouses, I think Florida State’s choice of uniform this past weekend was comically bad PR. A lot has been made of the black color of the uniforms, but I focused more on the details. particularly the choice of a cheeseball slogan reading ‘Unconquered’ adorning the thigh. At 2-3 and in sole possession of last place in the ACC’s coastal division, ‘conquered’ the Seminoles certainly are. It was a bad time to draw unnecessary, and sort of saucy, attention to themselves. Now the FSU Alumni Machine is calling for Bowden’s senile head. He is three years spryer than Joe Pa, but the state of mind is clearly day to day for anyone born in the 1920s and the young alums are putting Bowden on notice.

Quick Shots (Betting Edition)

*Ugh. My call on Vanderbilt could not have been further off. I blame Stewart Mandel, who called them an upset candidate. I agreed because I thought they’d taken some better SEC teams to the wire, and beat Georgia. I was overlooking the fact that they are Vanderbilt. And then they got rocked.

*For the second week, Boise State failed to cover the spread, and I can’t blame the offense, so I’ll rag for the second week in a row in neophyte DC Justin Wilcox . Your soft scheming antics may cut it in the WAC, but you’re making me worried for the Bowl Game, especially if it’s a Texas or worse in a BCS Bowl.

*Michigan, covering their spread again by 1 point, came through for the seventh week in a row. The only game they haven’t covered this year was the opener against Vanderbilt. I never used to bet on Michigan because of their conservative approach, particularly in the fourth quarter. But this season they’ve been a cash cow. I don’t have any finger nails left, but my wallet’s full.

*On Sunday my mom asked me if I have a gambling problem. I had to think about it, but finally I said, yeah, I didn’t buy points on Clemson this weekend. Let’s see if that drubbing of Georgia Tech gives my friend anymore confidence next time I ask him for insight on his team. Virginia Tech is coming up on Thursday and at and that looks like the next good spread for Clemson at -4.5.

Saturday, October 21, 2006


Michigan - 13 home against Iowa.

Vanderbilt +3.5 at home against South Carolina

NMST +20.5 at home against Hawaii

Boise State -20.5 on the road at Idaho

I was also thinking about Clemson -7 at home against Georgia Tech, so I asked my token Clemson fan friend for a little confidence-building insight. Here's what I got:

i'm certainly nervous about it. nine of the last 10 games between GT and Clemson have been decided by five points or fewer. it is homecoming and College Game Day is in town so there's no question it'll be exciting. I just hope we show up. The Tigers are ranked first in scoring in the NCAA right now with an average of 43 points per game so GT is really going to need to bring their D to stop us. the problem is we're going to need to bring our D to stop Reggie Ball, their extremely versatile QB.

Uhh... I'm going to hold off for now.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Michigan Fans: Come Back to Earth!!

Consider this my first shot across the bow to the evil pirate ship that is the University of Michigan football team.

Ever since September 16, when Michigan dismantled Notre Dame and disappointed domers across the nation, I've seen a side of Michigan fans I haven't seen in years.

After 5 straight years of at least 3 losses, Michigan is back at the top. In fact, there's some outrage that they're not ranked high enough at #3! But I just want Michigan fans to remember that this is LLLLoyd Carr we're dealing with here.

I love the fanfare, and the excitement involved with the potential of seeing OSU and Michigan play, both undefeated on November 18, but as a Michigan fan, I'd be concerned.

I'm not making any predictions or condemnations, but I have to say that if I'm Michigan, I am frightened of Troy Smith's patience, poise, decision making, and overall athletic ability.

I'd also be scared of Antonio Pittman, averaging almost 100 yards/game, and the double threat of Ginn and Gonzalez.

Remember at the beginning of the year, when Ohio State's defense was a concern? Now it's oft-mentioned among the top five in the country. We're giving up:

*An average of one TD a game
*Less than 300 yards/game
*9 points/game.

Troy has Glendale on his mind, and the rest of the Buckeyes are on board. Nothing is going to get in this team's way.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Watch Out Tate

Since Tate was recently demoted to dwarf-planet status and Albert Young is missing from the Hawkeye depth chart (via MGoBlog) count this news as strike three for the Iowa QB: apparently the first and second string QBs are suffering the lingering effects of Branch, Woodley et al. and have not been medically cleared to play following their respective concussions.

The repercussions, here? Things aren't looking good for Tate and the Hawkeyes this Saturday in Ann Arbor. The D line dominates again. Take Michigan at -13.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Week 8: BCS Rankings, Bullshit, Big Ten Ascendancy

By the way, the BCS rankings seem all out of sorts to me. I just can’t fathom USC as #2 unless historical performance over the last three seasons is taken into account. There’s just no reason for it, they’ve beaten the last three mid-level Pac 10 teams they’ve played by a touchdown each and the wins have seemed eeked-out at that. Meanwhile, Michigan has played superior competition and pretty much kept every team out of the game and is still ranked below the Trojans. Then we have Auburn at #4 (jeesh) above undefeated WVU, Texas and Notre Dame teams that lost to superior talent, and an Arkansas team that beat Auburn head to head. WTF!?!

But the sportswriters have got it right this week, finally elevating Michigan to #2 in the AP Poll, just in time for their final test (Iowa, if they still qualify after this week’s humiliating loss to Indiana) before the lay up lane of games (Indiana, Northwestern and Ball State) leading up to the enormous and much ballyhooed (you can picture the ABC tv execs licking their lips with egegiously early Corso and Herbstreit mention of an undefeated Michigan at OSU) November 18 showdown.

All season long, the #2 ranking has been something of a landmine. Each #2 so far has lost in short order (Texas, Notre Dame, Auburn, Florida) and fallen from National Title relevance. Again, the only test remaining before Michigan/Ohio State is Iowa, who looks to be crumbling right as Michigan is surging. No matter the 17-10 score, going into Happy Valley at night, dispatching the starting and backup QBs, and holding the Lions to -14 yards rushing is a big win. The game was never really in question. Michigan’s on a roll, and if I were Kirk Ferentz I wouldn’t show Drew Tate the tape of this game. The D Line is ferocious. Anthony Morelli can attest (if he even knows what day it is).

Quick Shots

*I for one, am disappointed that Florida lost. Of all the teams out there, they seemed the best competition outside of Ohio State/Michigan for the National Championship. Now, should the winner of Ohio State/Michigan finish unbeaten, who will be left to play that team for the Nat’l Campionship? USC? WVU? Louisville? Gulp. Florida is better than all of those teams combined and it would have been nice to a see a worthy matchup like that in the Championship game. Still I’m getting ahead of myself, and either WVU or Louisville will lose, and I think USC probably will too against Cal or Oregon.

*Switters and I were debating about the fate of John L. Smith after State turned a pretty numb performance against OSU in East Lansing on Saturday. Switters said, fire him on Monday, in the middle of the season. I say, give him a chance to rescue this season. If he can do that, resurrect a team that has basically quit since the 4th quarter against Notre Dame, he’s a miracle worker and must have some coaching promise. Sparty can win out and go 8-4 and make a bowl game, that’s a respectable season and if you look at the state of the program right now, a big victory. So to the Administration at State, give him the rest of this season. If he can make bliss out of this shit, he’s still worth something. If they’re as done as they look now by the end of November John L. gets pink-slipped.

*Iowa and NC State both lost in almost identical fashion on Saturday and not even separated by ten minutes. I was flipping between both games and saw first NC State, then Iowa, throw picks to end promising, last-minute drives and lose the games just when it felt they’d both pull it out. Crazy.

*I think all the rage and frustration that must have been building behind the Zen-like face of Dan Hawkins and his beleaguered Buffaloes, was exercised on Saturday against a supposedly decent Texas Tech team that was rendered helpless against a furious CU team. A win like that is cathartic, and no doubt made up for some of the humiliation they’d amassed in building Colorado’s longest losing streak. It will be interesting to see how the rest of the season goes for the Buffs.

*For the first time in a while, Boise State turned out to be a bad bet, giving up 28 points and 526 passing yards to NMSU. The spread was 26.5. Turns out Boise State's defensive coordinator, Justin Wilcox, is a pussy when it comes to pressuring the QB and would prefer to drop his LBs in coverage all day and let a lame team hang around. He's also really young for a DC, so maybe we can chalk it up to inexperience. But please, think about a pass rush. Ian Johnson wasn't bad for the Broncos, notching 192 rushing yards and 4 TDs. With that kind of output, the spread should have been safe. Yet, here I am poorer for my faith.

*Notre Dame had a bye week and I didn’t miss them at all.

Will the SEC Ever Stop Whining?

The irony is practically making me pass out over here. Maybe I need some good old-fashioned Southern lemonade. Or a whiskey.

So the first BCS rankings come out on Sunday, and out of all people, Auburn coach Tommy Tuberville has the audacity to say that the SEC will be overlooked:

"Every year, it's going to be like this. Until we get a playoff, the SEC's going to be on the outside looking in. I don't think [a one-loss SEC team in the BCS title game] will ever happen. I think people are enamored by not losing, rather than voting on who the best teams are. That's what I do. Of course, you've got to look at the wins and losses, but you've got to look at who they lost to, where they lost and how they came back."

This is coming from a guy whose team got waxed, at HOME, by an UNRANKED team, and is now ranked #4 in the BCS.

If anything, the SEC is getting too much respect by putting a one-loss (and really shitty loss) team ahead of some deserving undefeated squads.

And about the SEC having a title game and other major conferences not having one, the Big Ten does have one: it's called the Ohio State/Michigan game.

I'd love to see Auburn take on the Buckeyes in the title game, but this year, Auburn will be on the outside looking in. But that's not because they're being overlooked, it's because they lost to an unranked team at home.

Sorry, Tommy.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Big Mess at the U

Overall a great day of college football, except for this fucking mess in Miami. Where is that program headed? (Not that it's all Miami's fault, but as the Nationally relevant program of this pair you'd expect a little more discipline.)

Friday, October 13, 2006

Sleeping With the Devil - Week 7 Pics

Maybe I'm crazy, but after witnessing Michigan State's ineffectiveness last week in losing 31-13 at Michigan, I just don't see them getting up to play (at home albeit) Ohio State, who's made a habit of crushing spreads this season. (Except for last week but that was 36 points, come on.) So, against my natural inclinations, I'm taking Ohio State -14 and I'm not really that worried.

Second, I'm taking Michigan -6 at Penn State with or without Mario Manningham. I just don't think this matchup works out for Penn State offensively or defensively. And a bunch of drunk-ass kids wearing white t-shirts in the dark does not make a lick of difference. I think Michigan can run on this defense and pass on them and I think Penn State, whose pass game needs the run to be effective, will struggle against Mchigan's dominant front seven.

Other lines I'm evaluating but haven't decided on:

Boise State -26.5 at New Mexico State. I didn't bet on them last week with a 36.5 line and they won by 40 or something crazy. But the games being playined in Las Cruces, and the Broncos are less consistent on the road. Won by 7 at Wyoming. Won by 33 at Utah. Still it's only four touchdowns against New Mexico State and Boise State needs to run up the score to trick the computers into granting a BCS berth. It's looking like I'll take this bet.

Hawaii -4 at Fresno State. I could see this line working out either way. The game's at Fresno, but the Rainbow Warriors have been road warriors this season, taking it to Boise State on the blue and just barely losing 41-34. Fresno State has been terrible this year. Tough call.

Finally, I kind of like Washington -9.5 at home against the Beavers of Oregon State. The Dawgs impressed last weekend in a competitive loss at USC. Back in Seattle they could stomp the sluggish Beavers.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Chat Transcript: The Implications of Mario

switters: jeez

i didn't know mario had surgery

Sent at 10:17 AM on Wednesday

nastyb: yeah


if you read the blog everyday you'd have known

i'm on top of shit

switters: right

i understand

i wish i was on top of it

nastyb: you're mind's elsewhere

switters: mostly on the tigers

and "work"

nastyb: yeah

anyway if michigan can get through the next two games without him, they should be okay

switters: yes

for sure

nastyb: the games after that are the cupcake tour

before The Game


we have


so awesome

first two home second two away

at illinois


nastyb: zook's team is a beartrap

just ask sparty

switters: haha

i guess if you're terrible, that's true

nastyb: after iowa,

michigan's got

northwestern, ball state and indiana

switters: wow

don't they have 4 games?

nastyb: the 4th game is ohio state

switters: hmm

nastyb: and no week off either

switters: right

nastyb: i think "ball state" is the "week off"

but the same could be said of indiana

switters: ha


we just had that

with BG

nastyb: anyway

i don't think you beat penn state with deep bombs anyway, so i'm thinking we won't miss mario that much

psu plays a lot of cover defense

that deep throw smith had was just a plain miracle

Sent at 10:34 AM on Wednesday

switters: yeah

i wouldn't say "miracle"

i don't think god helped with it

i'd say a great play by a great athlete

nastyb: troy smith didn't thank god after the game?

switters: i'm sure he did

but he does after every game

nastyb: there you go

switters: we can get philosophical if you want, but troy smith is a great athlete

nastyb: agreed

switters: chad henne could not make that play

nastyb: he wouldn't have to

switters: with the help of jesus or not

how come

ohio state has a better o-line than michigan

nastyb: they'd have got the play off before the pocket broke down

Sent at 10:42 AM on Wednesday

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Does Mario Manningham Matter?

What was just a rumor yesterday has been confirmed today. Mario Manningham had arthroscopic surgery today (to repair a knee?, but details are still sketchy) and will miss the Penn State game on Saturday. Still Lloyd Carr's excited about a mysterious something saying "He’ll miss this week but we’re very excited about the news we received."

As to what news exactly, Carr, in typical grim mouth fashion, failed to elaborate. Though MGoBlog does: he's out 2-3 weeks with miniscus damage, but back for The Game.

Larger Ramifications:

Michigan falls from -7 favorites to -6 on this news.

Is this an harbinger of doom for Michigan's so far golden season? Penn State this Saturday? How about Iowa the following weekend? In which game will the deep bomb be the missing key to success?

Monday, October 09, 2006

Week 6: The Sun Rises in the SEC East

It's pretty much the SEC East this year, and Florida is the team to beat.

I think its safe to say that LSU had a significant role in their defeat on Saturday, namely in that their offense didn’t execute. Whether that’s the home-field advantage of the Swamp (Kirk Herbstreit called it the most significant home-field advantage in College Football on Saturday) , Florida’s brilliant defensive packages confusing the jean shorts off Jamarcus Russell, or that LSU, like Auburn and the rest of the SEC West, isn't that good, we may never know, so we’ll have to give some credit to Florida. After all, their offense was effective against the vaunted LSU defense, even when telegraphing their plays, such as the inevitable Tim Tebow QB draw.

Speaking of whom, as my brother would say, Tim Tebow’s “got minerals” and he looks like the real deal. I don’t know what minerals have to do with anything, but the sentiment is agreed upon. Particularly, you can see “real dealness” in his now-famous “jumpshot” touchdown pass, or the de rigeur ten yards he picks up on his draws even though everyone knows it’s coming. Minerals indeed. I think Tim Tebow gets enough iron in his diet. It’s scary for the rest of the SEC that he’s only a freshman.

But before we crown Florida let’s see if they can ride it out as the #2 team in the country (I still can’t fathom the USA Today Coaches Poll persisting with USC at #2, so I will henceforward disregard that poll). So far this season this has been the most dangerous ranking in the Top 10. Texas got beat as #2 by Ohio State. The following week, Notre Dame held the coveted #2 and promptly learned the drill in the clinic Michigan put on in South Bend. Still not convinced?

Just ask Auburn.

Auburn, I think, wasn’t taking Arkansas too seriously. I can’t blame them. I’d actually been planning a ‘Where Are the Now’ post on former Boise State coaches, lampooning their relative lack of success compared to the sustained ascendancy of their former program. This would apply to Dirk Koetter, Dan Hawkins and Houston Nutt at Arkansas. But after this weekend, I may have to table this for a while since it takes three to establish a trend (rhetorically at least) and Nutt just excused himself from the kid’s table with the biggest win of his career.

On the strength of a daring offensive game plan (which included a rare, crouching fumblerooski) and stout defense, Nutt walked into Jordan Hare stadium and handled Auburn like a drunk uncle disciplining his bratty nephew. At the same time, Arkansas asserted its hold on the SEC West. They’ve still got to beat LSU in Little Rock(?), but have set the table for a big match up in the SEC championship game. One question for Nutt, though, where was this team against USC last month?

Finally, maybe the SEC West isn’t that good? Brian at MGoBlog expands in his latest BlogPoll.

Back to the Coaches Poll, the curse of #2 may well apply here as well since I foresee a tough road ahead for the USC Trojans. After two tests in a row to the middling Pac 10 schools from Washington, Cal must be licking its chops. Oregon’s got a fighting chance. And maybe Notre Dame is for real after all. The end of USC’s schedule is starting to look a little much for this team as it’s currently playing.

Michigan’s Passing Attack, which they strategically hid for the first two games of the season, is simple: Touchdown Bombs. Henne was 11 of 17 for a few under 200 yards, but tossed 3 TDs in the process (2 to Manningham, 1 to Arrington). This is textbook establishing the run to setup the motherfucking deadly pass. When Michigan can run for 250 + yards, teams have to sell out to stop Hart et al, but then within 40 yards of the end zone they’re in position to score with Henne Bombs to Mannigham and Arrington.

Quick Shots

*Manningham has 527 yards and 9 touchdowns receiving this season compared to Ted Ginn’s 459 yards and 6 TDs and Ginn’s the Heisman candidate?

*Was I wrong about Cal or wrong about Oregon? I think mostly it’s that I jumped on the bandwagon after Cal’s loss at Tennessee. But now, I think they’re a dangerous team.

*Georgia’s finally running out of borrowed time.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

The Morning After

Ooof. I made some bad pics yesterday, as Florida, Texas and Cal were all able to demonstrate the absolute foolishness of my lines while improving their stock in the rankings. I was really impressed with all three winning teams, but have to say that LSU particularly picked a fine to beat itself into submission with a combination of muffed punts, goal line fumbles and Jamarcus Russell dunderheadedness.

Thanks go to NC State, Wake Forest, Tennessee and Washington for making it just a bit better than a push on the weekend.

Boise State (-36) and Michigan (-15), both of whom I did not bet on for the first time this year, covered their spreads. Dammit.

But the Buckeyes (-35.5) did not and I am glad for having refrained on that one.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

My Pics

Maybe these are crazy, but winning on NC State +10 on Thursday night has made me feel bold. So this Saturday it's upsets across the board:

Washington +19 at USC
Oklahoma +4 vs. Texas at the Red River Shootout
Oregon +5 at Cal
Tennessee +2.5 at Georgia
LSU Straight Even at Florida

Friday, October 06, 2006

Brother, Could You Spare a BCS Berth?

Generally, applying the transitive property to football (X beat Y, Y beat Z, so X will beat Z) is a recipe for embarassing disaster, especially if you bet on such tenous logic. But I'm going to bite on it today after Utah's convincing win over TCU (formerly ranked #17 and the mid-major BCS favorite) last night 20-7. We know now that Boise State is the best mid-major program this year. With Utah, and now TCU, measuring up short, there's really no one even close.

Not that TCU and Boise State were slated to play this season, but TCU's crumbling by 13 points to a team that Boise State beat by 33 does serve to legitimate Boise State's assertion that they are much better than TCU. The shear margins that sperate BSU > Utah > TCU are enough (46 points) that I not only feel entitled, but compelled, to apply the transitive property here in the hopes that we can create a groundswell of enthusiam for the Boise State Broncos in their mission to earn a BCS Bowl berth. Since they aren't a shoo-in, they'll need the help of public opinion.

Obviously, they still have to win out, but it's not to early to join Boise State AD Gene Bleymaier in drumming up some BCS support for the boys of the Blue.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Tempting Spreads

Here are some spreads from SportsBetting I'm considering for this week (This in no way constitutes actual gambling advice. If that's what you're looking for, here it is. Don't. (Gamble.)):

NC State +10 Hosting FSU - both teams suck so I don't see a dominant FSU victory, I actually see it barely happening. I'm placing my bet today, since the game's tonight.

Wake Forest +17 Hosting Clemson - my friend who's a Clemson fan writes:

thats a tough call. in years past I would say definitely take Wake... we always seem to play down to Wake, especially in Winston Salem, but Clemson is trying hard to make a name for themselves this year. we've put up more than 50 points in three games so far this year and are averaging over 40 points a game right now. that being said, we lost our Senior RB a week or so ago (our 2 best are a freshman and sophomore though) and one of our top receivers broke his foot in practice this week and is out for 4 to 5 weeks... so I'm inclined to say take the Deacons +17.

Washington +19.5 At USC - From what I've seen, John David Booty's USC is not a big-time offense in the mold of USC teams over the last few years. They're efficient and consistent and will probably win this game, but I don't think they're going to blow out the resurget Huskies by 19.5. Plus, I'm kind of high on Ty Willingham. He's got an intense stare, and I find this fortifies teams and is probably as good a reason to bet on the Dawgs as anything else.

Finally. one line that troubles me deeply and the chat that left me even more confused...

Bowling Green +35.5 At Ohio State

nastyb: what do you think of Ohio State -35.5 this weekend

that's a huge line

switters: well

i might take BGU

they've covered every spread this year, by a lot

but none that big

go ahead though
5 point spread vs. iowa at gametime

seems like a slamdunk

won by 28

so they can hang up 35.5 on BGU

18 point spread vs. NI
i will give you that they cover the shitty games closer than the big ones
but they have covered probably 12 straight games (since last season)

yeah, but 35.5? i will meditate on this.