Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Vindy's Picks Week 7-2010


Just two weeks after getting a 51-yard field the “island” during Survivor: Nicaragua, former head coach Jimmy Johnson is in discussion with executives at CBS to create a new system, based on the show, to determine a football championship at the pro or college level. Johnson wants tribes comprised entirely of current coaches from the NFL and NCAA, with the winner’s football team ultimately being awarded the Super Bowl trophy or National Title for that season. Members of the tribes would compete in such activities as “sending in plays” using just smoke signals and drums, “recruiting” or “drafting” the best available “team” from indigenous islanders and creating likenesses of the Heisman Trophy out of coconuts and reeds. Meanwhile, the BCS committee is trying to figure out how to factor in possession of the immunity idol into its weekly real-world calculation of rankings.

Finally shaking the sand and piranha out of his shorts, Vindicator stood at 10-5 following LSU’s upset of Florida, but simply split the remaining four night games this past Saturday to finish at 12-7 (47-56-2, 456). Having survived tribal council for another fortnight, Vindy wanders down to the beach and, hoping to beat the high-tide, uses a stick in the sand to scribble the words to...

(As claimed off his fantasy league waiver wire!)

#25 WEST VIRGINIA over South Florida giving 10 ½:
Mounties look like the class of a Big Least conference on a down year. Bulls were upset by Syracuse and won by a dozen over Western Kentucky in Tampa. USF has beaten West Virginia three of the last four seasons, covering all four lines. It’s a Thursday game and we know what that means for Vindicator, but the ‘Eers are among the top scoring defenses in the country...WVU 30 South Florida 13

SAT. OCT. 16
#1 Ohio State over #18 WISCONSIN giving 4: The only problem we see here is Pryor possibly playing thru the pain, as he did last week, against big, physical Wisky club. Buckeyes are scoring about 43 points per game, while the Badgers put up about 37, but the level of competition has been considerably better for State, while the Cheeseheads were busy drubbing the likes of UNLV and Austin Peay. UW is one of just two teams at 0-5 ATS (the other being New Mexico State). Wisky is a blocked XP against Arizona State from potentially not even being in the rankings ...OSU 28 Wisconsin 14

#2 Oregon: IDLE (next vs. UCLA 10/21)

#3 Boise State over SAN JOSE STATE giving 39 1/2: Boise’s last opponent, Toledo, would likely beat San Josie by at least two scores. Including Boise, all five of SJSU’s FBS foes have been ranked at the time. Spartans are 2-2 ATS, covering at aforementioned Wisconsin and last week against Reno squad off the rivalry game. To give ya a peak into Boise’s mind-set, Broncos went for two following its second touchdown in the 1st Quarter vs. the Rockets...’Taters 51 SJSU 6

#4 TCU over Brigham Young giving 29: Coogs had to keep possession for three full quarters (45:01) to slip by San Diego State. Line looks reasonable given a trio of losses by an average of 20 points to three teams currently in the Top 25, but the Kermits haven’t been scored upon in over 8 ½ quarters...TCU 42 Mormons 10

#5 NEBRASKA over Texas giving 9 ½: Lincoln will be a tough place for the Steers to get back on track after a bye week preceded by back-to-back defeats. Children of the Corn had three scoring plays of 68 yards or more to trash Kansas State and hang another Thursday night forecast loss on the Weber Kid. Colt McCoy had Nebraska’s number, but young Mr. Gilbert faces another big road game against Big Red team seeking payback for last season’s 13-12 loss in conference title match...Nebraska 31 Texas 20

#6 OKLAHOMA over Iowa State giving 24: Dust Devils aren’t likely to give up another 68 points like they did to Utah, but are 11th in the Big 12 in rush defense, giving up 201 yards per game. That could allow DeMarco Murray to have a productive day for the Sooners, who hopefully spent the off-week working on the mental aspects of the game that almost got them beat by Texas squad they dominated much of the game...Sooners 38 ISU 10

#12 Arkansas over #7 AUBURN taking 3 ½: Tigers hung on to beat Kentucky and help bring in a pair of winning tickets for our previously-odious oracle, but an early 17-point lead almost went for naught and Arkansas can bring that kind of offense as well. Hogs have taken two in a row from Aubie, winning by three scores in 2009 and by 3 points here in ‘08. We’ll take Ryan Mallett to give the Pork Rinds a trifecta...Arkansas 30 Auburn 27

#8 ALABAMA over Mississippi giving 21: Until ‘Bama’s 19-point win last season, the games in the previous four years had been decided by a total of 13 points. South Carolina held Tide RBs Ingram and Richardson to a combined 64 rushing yards. Can’t see Old Mist doin’ that. Rebels have consecutive SU/ATS victories over Fresno and Kentucky, but lost early on to I-AA Jacksonville State and Vandy. Vindicator has asked the bookies to grant him a bye week before each Alabama game. Did we stutter???!!!...Alabama 37 Mississippi 6

McNeese State @ #9 LSU: No line.

KENTUCKY over #10 South Carolina taking 5 1/2: In his preseason mag, Phil Steele liked South Carolina as a darkhorse national title contender. He just might be right. The Poultry equaled or outscored ‘Bama in all four quarters. Kentucky’s been on the verge of two big upsets the last two weeks. We don’t think they’ll pull it off here, but the Wildcats lost in Columbia by 2 last season, RB Cobb can run and catch and the Gamecocks are on 1-3 ATS skid laying points on the road...That Other USC 24 Kentucky 21

#11 Utah over WYOMING giving 20: In light of what Utah did to Iowa State after the ‘Clones converted a pair of 1st Quarter turnovers into 14 points, the Cowpokes would be well-advised to just take a knee three times and punt if the bouncing ball happens to land in their collective saddle. Wyoming, behind its second-string QB, could not dent the board vs. the Toads and the Utes could impose a second straight shutout here. Fourth ranked opponent for Wyoming in six games and Utah’s averaging 60 ppg over the past three weeks. Cowboys did lose just 20-14 earlier to Air Force...Utah 42 Wyoming 12

#13 MICHIGAN STATE over Illinois giving 7: We don’t anticipate the letdown for the Spartans, who routinely beat the Wolverines of late. Illini, who’ve been reliable road dog the past five seasons and 3-1 ATS so far this year, are playing with some passion recently, hangin’ with the Buckeyes until late before blasting the Nitwit Lions for their first win in Not-So-Happy Valley. Sparty’s making the most out of their venture into the rankings...MSU 35 Illini 24

#14 Stanford: IDLE (next vs. Washington State)

#15 Iowa over MICHIGAN giving 3: It’s Homecoming in Ann Arbor and Iowa lost by 7 at Arizona, the only quality team it has faced. UA was also the only team to score more than 7 vs. the Hawkeyes. Wolverines defense needs to make some plays. Iowa has won 24 of its last 31 games outright...Iowa 27 Michigan 16

Boston College over #16 FLORIDA STATE taking 21 1/2: Following the nonsense in Norman, the Injuns are on 4-0 SU/ATS run and doing it on the ground. Eagles have won the last two in this series, both as dogs. We paid the price for backing Reno off its rivalry game. We’ll give iffy BC a chance despite a winless spread record to-date... FSU 31 BC 13

WASHINGTON STATE over #17 Arizona taking 23 1/2: History shows an ever-increasing margin of victory by the ‘Cats over WSU in each of the last four seasons, including a 48-7 decision last year and we concede that three Ducks turnovers early contributed to Wazzou’s cover, but Oregon did not characteristically pull away in the second half. Cougars have actually been the right play in three of their last four games and are maybe sending a message that they’re not quite dead yet...or at least back from the dead...or...ummm...would rather be red than dead?... AZ 38 WSU 20

#19 Nevada-Reno over HAWAII giving 7: ‘Bows have the most explosive offense the Wolfpack has faced this year (nearly 500 yards/game) and have won the money four outta’ five games in 2010 (eight times in last eleven back to 2009). They did lose at Colorado by 18 earlier though. Reno went on a Sunday stroll vs. SJSU that we weren’t really expecting. Back to business this Saturday...UNR 41 Hawaii 31

TEXAS TECH over #20 Oklahoma State giving 3 ½: We anticipate plenty of points here despite a semi-low scoring game last year, won 24-17 by Tech. “Run” is a four-letter word for the Raiders and isn’t found near the front of State’s playbook either. Frankly, we’d be happy with an overtime push and should it come down to a late kick in “last team with da’ ball wins” scenario, the advantage goes to the Cowpokes (see our Black Shirt awardee below). Based on the tougher schedule, we’ll say...”Guns Up!”....Red Raiders 44 Oklahoma State 38

TEXAS A&M over #21 Missouri giving 3 ½: No real superstars playing for Mizzou. Tigers just doing it with good old-fashioned defense and special teams (two kick-blocks last week in shutout of the Buffaloes). A&M was sloppy in one-TD loss to Arkansas, but kept Hogs’ offense reasonably contained scoring-wise. Missouri has won 23 of 32 games over past two-plus seasons, but the Aggies need a win here to avoid third straight SU loss. They find a way...Texas A&M 24 Missouri 19

Mississippi State over #22 FLORIDA taking 7: Bulldogs might smell blood in the water here against reeling Gators. Florida pulled the classic “stole defeat from the jaws of victory” last week despite all of LSU’s efforts to give the game away. Brantley’s not 100% and back-up QB Trey Burton might as well be Tim Burton. UF might pull out a close one, but we’ll make the bold call...Mississippi State 24 Florida 23

#23 Air Force over SAN DIEGO STATE giving 1: LOCK OF DA’ WEEK. Aztecs are definitely improved this season, losing by just 3 at currently-ranked Missouri, but were held scoreless for the final 8 ½ minutes in loss to BYU. The Pilots are on 0-3 ATS skid, but all of those were in double-digit favorite roles. They only have to win here. After hearing some less-than-kind words about their run D vs. Colorado State, we expect the Flyboys to be fired up...Flight Platoon 27 SDSU 17

#24 Oregon State over WASHINGTON giving 1: We looked at this for lock too. Beavers committed their first turnover of the season last week, but pulled out the road win over Arizona. The loss of WR James Rodgers hurts and figures to cost State at least one touchdown per game, though brother ‘Quizz might carry more of the load on the ground. UDUB has been hammered the past three years by OSU, losing by at least three touchdowns in each of those. Jake Locker won’t be the great equalizer this time either...Beavers 31 Huskies 20

Just think of could see Les Miles and Mark Singletary driving blocking sleds through sand dunes , Joe Paterno and Bill Belichick sporting face- and body paint made from crushed berries or Wade Phillips racing Urban Meyer as they eat their way through a Fear-Factor-esque “training table” of bugs and fried lizards! We’d like to suggest a new motto for the reality show...”Out-Hit, Outplay, Out-Pass”.

During summer training camp, Cowboys rookie Dez Bryant refused to carry WR Roy Williams’ shoulder pads after practice. Bryant later said, “I would have took his shoulder pads, his pants...I would have took everything....” Apparently he “took everything” except English grammar during his days at Oklahoma State.

In May, Phillies bullpen coach Mike Billmeyer was accused by the Rockies of peeking through binoculars to steal signs at Coors Field. Billmeyer claimed he was just watchin’ his own catcher set-up defensively. In related news, the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope, will be constructed in northern Chile and equipped with the world’s largest digital camera. No truth to the rumor Billmeyer just happens to have plane tickets to the South American country for as long as his team remains in the hunt for the World Series!

Vindy’s Picks welcomes the start of hockey season by noting Lord Stanley’s Cup was on display at the Palms here in Vegas to promote the NHL Awards Show in June. The coveted hardware is said to have a capacity of 14 beers...or what fans of the Eagles and Raiders would simply call...the “two-minute drill!”. Snoop Dogg performed at that show....then later smoked the world’s largest bowl from Da’ Cup backstage!

Black Shirt: We’re sending the obsidian undergarment this week to Oklahoma State kicker Dan Bailey for a pair of 52-yard field goals that allowed the Cowpokes to beat the line by 3 and keep your host from entering Saturday down 0-2 after tanking yet-another Thursday nighter!

“Locked in a Box?”: We thank Colorado State for what was basically a backdoor-covering TD with 41 seconds left to bring home our lock and square the record at 3-3 (.500).

Shoppe Talk: The Buckeyes (2-4) and Gators (2-4) get temporary reprieves, but Vindy takes an axe to Stanford’s tree mascot after the Cardinal (2-3) posted its third forecast loss in four games.

Vindy’s Week 7 Best Bets: Last Week: 2-4 Season: 10-18 (.357)
NORTHERN ILLINOIS -14 ½ over Buffalo, COLORADO STATE -3 over Unlv, Southern Methodist +2 over NAVY, NC State -7 over EAST CAROLINA

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