Wednesday, November 07, 2012

Vindy's Picks Week 11-2012


INDIANAPOLIS, Indiana (BBC)…Akin to the problems that could plague the presidential election, faulty voting machines and individual state laws that allow counting of provisional ballots well-after the intended decision-day could wreak havoc for the BCS Poll and suspend determination of which two NCAA teams can play for the national title. The resulting delays might also impact pairings for some of the lesser bowl games as well. Concerns continue over touch-screen technology that may incorrectly record votes for the wrong teams and regulations allowing poll voters to provide appropriate identification days after the poll is supposed to be published, and recounts by teams in tightly-contested polls would obstruct an already-lame duck college football championship system.

In related news, the bookies have already conceded Vindicator’s modest gain via an 11-8 (87-92, .486) record for Week Ten after bombing our fab forecaster in Week Nine. Coming from Vindy’s loins with more “Frankenfacts” than the entire presidential campaign, it’s…

(Bringin’ tears to the eyes of more toddlers than that “Bronco ‘Bama” guy!)

Ball State (+6) over #23 TOLEDO:
Crazy MACsters like to play games on Tuesday nights! Fine. We were gonna’ pass on Election Night coverage anyway. Rockets have a nice offense, but carry a traditionally MAC-weak defense (though it hasn’t been terrible of late). Toledo is 8-1 SU (with only loss coming by 7 at Arizona to open the year) and 6-2 ATS, but 1-2 against the line in past three weeks, having won all three games by exactly 5-points or 6 (including upset of Cincinnati). Former Mudhens OC Matt Campbell got the call as head coach this year and got just 9 total returning starters. Redbirds are 7-2 ATS, including a triumph over Army, validating one of “best bets” for Week 9. State did beat Big Tent-Peg upstart Indiana in early September and lost by just two at conference-contender Kent State. Third straight road game for the Cardinals, who’ve covered four of five away so far and have an excellent history as road doggies. “Over” might be the first choice of wagers. Finishing 12th nationally in sacks permitted in 2011 (we thank Marc Lawrence’s Playbook.Com for that tidbit) with 11, they’re on track to equal or better that mark (8 allowed to-date). Rockets have 18 sacks in 2012…Spacemen 34 Ball State 30 THIS ONE’S ALREADY IN THE BOOKS AS A FORECAST WIN COURTESY OF STATE’S 34-27 UPSET OF MAJOR TOM

#8 Florida State (+13 ½) over VIRGINIA TECH:
FSU 34 VT 10

SAT. NOV. 10
#1 ALABAMA (-13 ½) over #15 Texas A&M:
Even the mighty Tide needs a little luck sometimes and got it in win over LSU. A&M boasts 5th best offense behind potent running game, but ‘Bama allows just 66 rush yards per game. Perhaps more telling is the mere 95 passing yards per game allowed to Tide opponents, given the tendency for Elephants to blow-out their foes. Not many folks outside College Station, Texas would’ve expected Aggies to be in second-place in the SEC West at this juncture. Bengals were just the second club to score more than 14 vs. the Tide in as many seasons (Georgia Southern tallied 21 last year). Aggies have covered only 2 of last 45 road defeats and we know Nick Saban will have a plan for A&M’s magic freshman QB Manziel…Alabama 35 Aggies 16

CAL (+27 ½) over #2 Oregon: Drakes 48 Bears 24

#3 Kansas State @ TCU: OFF

#4 Notre Dame (-18 ½) over BOSTON COLLEGE: Turnovers almost cost the Irish last week despite out-first-downing (is that a word??!!) 34-13 in 3OT win. Eagles have yet to cover vs. an FBS opponent in eight tries (0-7-1 by our numbers). Notre Dame’s last visit to Chestnut Hill (in 2010) resulted in an 18-point win by the Leprechauns. Irish have won three straight in the series, though the bookend-tilts in South Bend were very close. After hitting the Jumbo-Tron for 30 or more in four of first five games in 2012, Beagles’ O went south, to the tune of just over 14 ppg over past four. The crystal ball doesn’t show BC exceeding that average vs. Guinness Stout D…ND 29 Boston College 7

#5 Ohio State: IDLE (next @ Wisconsin)

AUBURN (+15) over #6 Georgia: Joja’ 24 Tigers 13

Weeziana-Lafayette (+26) over #7 FLORIDA: Gators’ recent power-outage in last two games (23 total points scored) has us flashin’ back to the early-season incarnation of the team. The stop-squad is still the calling card as Mizzou, despite four turnovers, limited UF to eleven first-downs in Crocs narrow victory last week. Florida has pounded its last three Stun Belt foes and Cajuns come in off big upset of Weeziana-Monroe, getting almost double-digits. Senior-laden Lafayette hasn’t been good vs. the Top 25 and it’s Homecoming in Gainesville, but ULL is rockin’ road dog with a big offense…Gators 32 Cajuns 14

#9 LSU (-14) over #22 Mississippi State: We’ve lost confidence in the Bulldogs, but LSU was its own worst enemy in the first-half vs. Crimson Tide…on the field and on the sidelines, with multiple drops by the wide-outs, failed trick-plays and poor tackling on ‘Bama’s late first-half 92-yard touchdown-drive. LSU doesn’t have the explosive offense of A&M, but MSU turned it over just one time in 25-point loss to the Aggies and has been outscored 76-20 in recent pair of losses. Bengals are still a crapshoot layin’ points in Death Valley (2-2 on the season), but Bulldogs have been money-burners vs. ranked teams. Better execution gets Tigers the win and cover…LSU 31 MSU 14

Maryland (+31) over #10 CLEMSON: We considered this for “lock”. Box Turtles have dropped three consecutive games after promising 4-2 SU start, despite the transfer of yet-another QB to Wisconsin in the preseason. Terps were competitive in two of the three, losing the pair in question by combined five points. Maryland lost respectably by 10 at West Virginia earlier in the year, but also gave Boston College the second of two total victories (and only I-A dubya), pushing at +3. Tigers just laid 56 on Duke and carry one of the better passing games, but Terps’ biggest loss was by 20 last week to Joja’ Tech…Tigers 38 Maryland 16

#11 Louisville (-2 ½) over SYRACUSE: Louisville 31 ‘Cuse 21

Arkansas (+14) over #12 SOUTH CAROLINA: Poultry 28 Pork 20

#13 Oregon State (+5) over #16 STANFORD: UPSET PICK OF DA’ WEEK. Both clubs are a game behind Oregon for the North Division lead. State lost at UDUB by 3. Birds lost in Seattle by 4. We correctly had Stanford throwing the shut-out over Colorado last week…we just didn’t see them scoring 48 to go with it! There’s a two-year history of November slides by the Beavers, but State will want to avenge the punishing 25-point loss in 2011 at Corvallis and blasting the hapless Bison doesn’t prove the QB problems in Palo Alto have been fixed. OSU has won and covered both earlier games vs. Top 25 opponents. We’ll call for the hat-trick…Beavers 23 Cards 20

Baylor (+20 ½) over #14 OKLAHOMA: Sooners 44 Baylor 30

WASHINGTON STATE (+15) over #17 Ucla: UCLA 28 Wazzou 24

Penn State (+7) over #18 NEBRASKA: UPSET ALERT. Big Dread ran for nearly 8 yards a pop in fortunate victory in East Lansing and might be without RB Rex Burkhead for this one. That would put a bit more pressure on inconsistent QB Taylor Martinez, who survived three picks for the win. Similar miscues against the alma mater would likely cost NU. We’re paraphrasing here, but during the Penn State-Ohio State game, ESPN’s Mark May, referring of course to the Lions, said “Find a kicker!” whether it’s from the soccer team or off the street or whatever. Vindy was thinkin’ maybe one of those 1970’s Super-Jock football toys (raise yer hand if ya had one and remember tapping the helmet to make the player kick the ball thru the uprights that came with it!). Corn Cobs are undefeated in four games at Lincoln thus far and 3-1 ATS. Hopin’ for the outright dubya, but conservatively call it… Nebraska 19 PSU 17

Iowa State (+9 ½) over #19 TEXAS: UPSET ALERT. Steers 21 ISU 19

#20 Louisiana Tech (-20) over TEXAS STATE: LOCK OF DA’ WEEK. Bulldogs get to feast on second FBS newbie in as many weeks after beating UTSA by 24 at home. QB Cameron went 30 of 39 passing in the spread-loss. TSU not impressive defensively, allowing almost 32 ppg and facing an offense second only behind Oregon nationally. Bobcats rank in the 90’s in both rushing and passing, and while 2-1 ATS at home in 2012 and showing outright triumphs over Houston and Idaho, we just don’t see TSU staying within three scores of prolific Tech…LT 52 Texas State 23

Arizona State (+9) over #21 USC: UPSET ALERT #2. Troy 31 Devils 29

Army (+17 ½) over #24 RUTGERS: Knights own the top rush D in the Big Least and are the only conference squad to allow less than four-digits of ground yards. They’re also 4th nationally, giving up just four rushing touchdowns to-date and a paltry 88.5 ypg. Cadets bring the country’s best rushing yardage team at 375 ypg. Rutgers is not unfamiliar with the option and got an extra week to prepare, as well as to contemplate what went wrong in the home-upset vs. Kent State. The Soldiers are just 2-7 SU, though come into this one having beaten Air Force (decisively). With a bowl bid outta’ da’ question, Hudson River Rats might simply wait for the chance vs. Navy to grab the Commander-in-Chief’s trophy or could be inspired on the weekend before Veterans’ Day. Army’s covered just 2 of last 11 away from West Point, but Rutgers has beaten only AA Howard and Temple by this many…Jersey Turnpike Paladins 24 Army 12

#25 TEXAS TECH (GASP!) (-25) over Kansas: Guns Up 42 Kansas 10


BTW, Crimson Tide fans have filed allegations that machines in Ohio flipped BCS votes for ‘Bama to… Akron!

Washington rookie QB RG III made the news this past week for handing out socks at his home on Halloween. Not to be outdone, former NFL star OJ Simpson gave gloves to a parade of fellow-cons going cell-to-cell at Lovelock Correctional Facility. In related news, Griffin sported socks bearing Superman’s famed “S” logo while accepting his Heisman Trophy last December. ESPN didn’t run the pic, but we predicted several teams would stock-up on Kryptonite for the ex-Baylor star’s intro-year in the pros. Given the Redskins current 3-6 tally, we’d say opponents cornered da’ market on the glowing-green substance in a timely fashion!

In yet-another move to show solidarity with a certain Sesame Street staple, NFL owners and coaches have decided to list their potential draftees outta’ college next April on their NFL Draft Big Bird!

As we welcome our the opening week of our second sports-love, we recall Murray State dropping its first game of the 2011 college hoops season to Tennessee State less than three weeks after selling T-shirts noting “Best start in school history, highest ranking, last of the unbeaten”. However, going into the Big Dance, the Racers hawked garments proclaiming “Little guys with a snowball’s chance in Hell!”

A few other Linsanity candidates that went unrecognized last season…Fred Lynnsanity! Lynn Swannity! Marlinsanity! Lynnsanity Redgrave! Loretta Lynnsanity! Vera Lynnsanity (for fans of Pink Floyd The Wall), President Abraham Linsanity! And yes…Lindsanity Lohan!

Last month, your humble narrator finished as runner-up in a national contest to become the first male model on “The Price is Right”. Vindy lost out after judges claimed the much-younger challenger from Boston had “better picks”. “Better freakin’ picks???!!! Who are they kiddin’???!!! Some baby-faced punk from Bean Town did a better job forecasting the Top 25???!!! We got half a mind to file a formal protest…and picket …and boycott da’ show and…wait…what’s that????....The panel said the kid won because he had better pecs????!!! Hanging our head and doing our best Rosanna Rosanna Danna impersonation, we stagger to humbly-utter…”Never mind!”

Black Shirt: It won’t fit into any of the Ducks oodles of outfit options, but the ebony tee goes to RB Kenyon Barner for 321 rushing yards and five touchdowns that gave Oregon the cover and Vindy a forecast win involving the Trojan horseradish!

“Wish I Had That One Back”: Yep, we’d like to revisit our Colorado (+27 ½) over Stanford selection after noting “the Bison blow” and “we’re a glutton for punishment” (on the da’ bright side, we did predict the Buffaloes first offensive goose-egg at Boulder in 26 years!)

“Locked in a Box?”: We’d like to take a moment to express our disappointment in the aluminum magnolias of Mississippi State as well as Week 10 “lock” Mississippi for their “efforts”. Rebels continued our lock futility, now at 2-8 (.200), for which we have two words…epic fail!

Shoppe Talk: As mentioned above, the Men of Troy (2-7, .222) finally cut us another break, but the Mountaineers (1-6, .142) took us out behind the woodshed again and UCLA stays in the fray for post-season “hardware” at 0-5 (.000)

Vindy’s Week 11 Best Bets: Last Week: 3-2 Season: 26-22 (.542)
Pitt -3 ½ over UCONN, Miami +1 over VIRGINIA, Purdue +5 over IOWA, Marshall -3 over UAB, Tulane -1 ½ over MEMPHIS, South Alabama +9 ½ over NORTH TEXAS

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