Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Vindy's Picks Week 8-2013


ROME, Italy (BBC)…
Long considering itself college football’s divine power since its beginning over a decade ago, the BCS will take the concept a step further by recognizing the election of a new pope last March and getting approval from the Vatican to be known the Basilica Conclave Series as it sets about determining which teams play for the national title for the final time before being replaced by a playoff system next season. Chiming-in on the press conference announcing the change, a spokesperson for the Catholic Church said the Cardinals had a great deal of interest in the sport and revealed that they were “so impressed with Pope Francis’ time in the forty and his ability to make sinners miss in the open field” that they traded up to get him!

Rebounding from our first losing effort of the season with a decent 10-7 showing last week (61-47-4, .565), we’re helping bettors find religion around the world with…

(Filling confession boxes at an alarming rate!)

#10 Miami (-7) over NORTH CAROLINA:
Hurricanes 31 UNC 17

FRI. OCT. 18
Central Florida (+11 ½) over #8 LOUISVILLE:
One of these things isn’t like the others…UCF beat Penn State by 3 in Happy Valley, Knights lost by three to South Carolina at home, Central Florida edged Memphis by 7 on the road. Redbirds still haven’t allowed more than 13 points to any opponent, but the potent offense can be slowed by a reasonable defense, as evidenced by Rutgers last week. George O’Leary’s stop-squad hasn’t been bad despite a lack of depth, allowing 11 total touchdowns over five games, with PSU and South Carolina accounting for 8 of those, and just 2 of the 11 via the pass. Should be a good QB match-up between Blake Bortles and Teddy Bridgewater. We prefer “under” 53, but…Cardinal 24 UCF 17

SAT. OCT. 19
#1 ALABAMA (-28) over Arkansas:
Tide 41 Hogs 10

Washington State (+37 ½) over #2 OREGON: Ducks 51 Wazzou 27

#3 CLEMSON (+3) over #5 Florida State: We changed our knee-jerk reaction pick here. Terps pass D was horrible, but ‘Noles got virtually nothing trying to rush vs. Maryland early two weeks ago. Terps were also thwarted in repeated attempts to run up the middle vs. State’s defensive front. The O-line pass-blocked and protected QB Winston well. These two squads are basically equal in most statistical categories, but Tigers have played the tougher schedule, have the experience edge at QB with senior Taj Boyd over redshirt-frosh Jameis Winston, and Vic Beasley has nine solo sacks. State did have an extra week to prep while CU was fortunate to beat Boston College. Tigers have allowed just six red zone scores, FSU only nine. ‘Noles have beaten three of last four Top 25 foes, CU is just 3-4 SU in last seven vs. ranked teams…Clemson 27 FSU 23

#4 OHIO STATE (-17) over Iowa: Hawkeyes won total of four games last season, but have already matched that to-date, though hasn’t beaten anyone of note and shows a loss to Northern Illinois and a 12-point defeat to Michigan State last week. State’s been perfect ATS, kinda’, taking five straight since missing the cover in opener vs. Buffalo. Idle week probably helped Braxton Miller heal that much more and while Hawkeyes yield just south of 89 rushing yards/game, we don’t expect that proficiency to hold up vs. the likes of Carlos Hyde. Buckeyes’ two Big Tent-Peg wins have effectively come by single-digits (Columbus faithful ain’t gonna’ take credit for that NW hook-n-ladder debauchery, are ya?!!!). Most of the nation outside Nevada got Monday off to celebrate some dude named Columbus, who sailed across the Atlantic, settling in Ohio, and immediately made plans to build da’ Horseshoe! ... OSU 37 Iowa 16

#6 Louisiana State (-7) over MISSISSIPPI: Bengals 25 Ole Miss 16

#24 Auburn (+14) over #7 TEXAS A&M: A&M 44 Tigers 34

#9 Ucla (+4 ½) over #13 STANFORD: UPSET PICK OF DA’ WEEK. Bruins bested da’ Utes in Salt Lake by 7. Utah made a goal line stand late to drop the Trees last week. We like the revenge-angle here because in 2012, UCLA was 9-2 headed into what became back-to-back losses to Stanford, the second of which was a 27-24 defeat after a missed 52-yard FG in the final minute that relegated the Bruins to the December 27th Holiday Bowl rather than the Rose Bowl after a previous 6-2 PAC-12 win-loss record. It’s Homecoming for the Birds and SU has topped a pair of ranked squads already, but…UCLA 31 Stanford 27

#11 South Carolina (-7) over TENNESSEE: Almost made this our “lock” pick. We doubt the Vols can muster the same effort vs. the Poultry that got ‘em to extra-frames vs. Joja’, and while the Tenders hadn’t been keeping a lotta’ distance between themselves and their opponents until last week’s beatdown at Arkansas, we think the combination of Shaw and Davis can get separation by more than a TD here. Carolina has won the last three years, but Rocky Top got the spread-win each time, losing by 14, 11 and 3 most recently. Clowney continues to be a non-factor for SC defense, but shouldn’t be a problem if the offense does what it’s capable of achieving…And Dumplings 31 Tennessee 14

Iowa State (+31) over #12 BAYLOR: Bears 48 ISU 27

#22 Florida (-2 ½) over #14 MISSOURI: Gators are #112 in penalties-accrued at almost 8 per game and it showed last week as untimely flags on both sides of the ball killed ‘em at LSU. We thank Mizzou for bringin’ home one of our two upset picks last week (and Ole Miss wilted in the final 3 minutes vs. A&M or we woulda’ been 2-fer-2). UF QB Tyler Murphy goes into another hostile environment, but Columbia ain’t Baton Rouge and Tigers have lesser offensive threat with James Franklin gone for six weeks. Florida on 3-8 ATS skid, but this line is minimal…Crocs 23 Missouri 13

VANDERBILT (+8 ½) over #15 Georgia: Joja’ 38 Vandy 34

#16 Texas Tech (-7) over WEST VIRGINIA: Tech 30 Mountaineers 20

Nevada-Las Vegas (+23) over #17 FRESNO STATE: Break up da’ Rebels, who finally ditched the road-game monkey at New Mexico in late September and are on first four-game SU dubya- streak in three decades???!!!! Our best call here is the “over” since both defenses are subject to big plays. First of back-to-back road games for UNLV, who’s now 2-2-1 in last five away-dog roles. Rebels will need to convert on 3rd Downs, take advantage of Fresno’s 116th-ranked kickoff coverage to get good field-position and use the running game to keep Derek Carr and company on the pine. If UNLV can press the momentum and keep Fresno (IDLE last week) in the 40’s (questionable given Hawaii’s three 4th Quarter scores in a 10-minute span last week), they can cover…Bulldogs 44 UNLV 30

#18 Oklahoma (-23) over KANSAS: Oklahoma 48 Blue Birds 14

#19 Virginia Tech: IDLE (next vs. Duke)

#20 Washington (+2 ½) over ARIZONA STATE: LOCK OF DA’ WEEK. MINOR UPSET PICK OF DA’ WEEK. Sled Dogs hung with Oregon for three quarters before falling. If they didn’t leave it all on the field in Eugene, we think UDUB can win this outright behind the running of Bishop Sankey, who went for 172 vs. the Ducks, and a couple TD tosses by Keith Price. Sun Devils bombed Colorado (but who doesn’t?!) after “upset” loss to the Irish. It’s Homecoming in Tempe. Too bad for the Pitchforks…Washington 34 ASU 28

Texas Christian (+7) over #21 OKLAHOMA STATE: UPSET ALERT. West Virginia showed what a staunch defense can do to the Cowpokes’ scoring machine. We’ll be conservative, but a Frogs win won’t surprise us… OKSU 23 Froggies 20

CENTRAL MICHIGAN (+17) over #23 Northern Illinois: NIU has an offense that could absolutely roll over CMU, and remember that the Chippies lost by 10 to UNLV, helping give the Rebels some hope on the season, but Akron won most of the statistical categories in a 7-point loss at DeKalb last week and after a very slow start, Central Michigan has consecutive SU/ATS wins over MAC whipping-boy Miami-Ohio and the Ohio Bobcats…as 18-point underdogs! Past two years in this series has seen a lotta’ points, but NIU has two “unders” recently and Chippewas have been below the total in four of last five. Chippies don’t play again until November 6 following this one and Huskies haven’t posted a victory in Mt. Pleasant since 2005…NIU 34 CMU 24

#25 Wisconsin (-10 ½) over ILLINOIS: Badgers 31 Illini 17


BTW, BCS also stands for …“Be Closin’ Soon”!! (And MVP is “Most Valuable Pontiff”!)

In related news…there was a false-alarm in the white-smoke sightings in March’s papal conclave when former MLB hurler Larry Johnson, in Italy at the time, obliterated a pigeon with a fastball near the Vatican! Spectators in the U.S. were also briefly confused when the NCAA Tournament committee used white smoke to signal the selection of the overall #1 seed!

One more thought on UNLV-Fresno State…the Rebels haven’t hurt themselves with penalties, showing the fourth- fewest number of yellow hankies in the nation.

The Atlanta Falcons’ new venue…the Pantheon…includes a sports bar the length of an entire gridiron…aptly named “The 100-Yard Bar”. At the start of every game, there’s a coin-toss to see which team’s fans get opening-possession of the bar tender and the other team’s fans get to choose which end of the bar they’ll defend in the First Quarter!

We got twenty bucks that says Washington’s pro football franchise eventually goes the way of St. John’s and becomes the Red Storm!

The “Leftovers” column of the April 24 edition of the LVRJ pointed out that Detroit Tigers 2011 manager Jim Leyland did not swap out his Underoos during a 12-game winning streak. We’re ashamed to say we strained our bathtub hooch thru said-coach’s unmentionables later that season, hopin’ fer similar success against the NCAA pigskin point-spread!

One more Miley Cyrus parody…”I came in like a raaaacquet ball!”

Black Shirt: Goes to Pitt QB Tom Savage for failing to successfully rush for the 2-point conversion on Panthers final TD with 2:00 to play that got us a win instead of a loss in game vs. the Hokies.

“Locked in a Box?”: We’re suckin’ dirty pond water at 3-3-1 (.500) following Northwestern’s failure to show up at Wisconsin.

Shoppe Talk: The Chicken Bouillon hosed us again by holding a Pig-roast vs. Arkansas to fall to 1-5 (.167). Meanwhile, we’re firing a few warning shots across the bow of the U.S.S. Stanford (0-3 skid, 1-4 in last 5) and the H.M.S Wolverine (0-4 in last four appearances).

Vindy’s Week 8 Best Bets: Last Week: 3-1 Season: 21-11 (.656)
MEMPHIS -3 ½ over Southern Methodist, HOUSTON +9 over Brigham Young, Utah +5 over ARIZONA, Army-TEMPLE “under” 58

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