Wednesday, November 05, 2014

Between Da' Hashmarks Week 11-2014

NEW YORK, New York (AP)…Museums are wooing new patrons with adult sleepovers. The American Museum of Natural History provides champagne, dinner and live jazz. Adult visitors can snooze in sleeping bags beneath the famous 94-ft-long blue whale hanging from the ceiling of the spacious Milstein Hall of Oceanic Life. Also, the Big Apple’s Rubin Museum of Art allows sleeping under works of art and having their dreams interpreted when they awake. Meanwhile, bettors can get some shut-eye under the world’s largest parlay card while having nightmares about…

(Legally wearing equestrian nasal strips)
Virginia (+18) over #2 FLORIDA STATE: Given the weekly necessity to rally for the victory, we’re not sure any contest on the schedule qualifies as a “trap game” for the ‘Noles, but if there is one, this is it. Off the huge comeback at Louisville and a road-trip to vastly-improved rival Miami up next, State might very well look past a decent Cavaliers squad that beat the aforementioned Cardinals in September. Minus last year’s National Title run, FSU finds a way to fall in a game it shouldn’t. This could be it…though we think Boston College is a better candidate for that role, should the Tribe get past Miami. Neither side’s terribly-attractive ATS. Wahoos on 0-3 SU/0-4 ATS dive while State notched just its second spread-win in seven tries this year (including one home fave cover in three attempts). It’s Homecoming in Tallahassee and Jimbo Fisher is pooh-poohing worries over Winston’s bad wheel. Virginia won 4 of its first 6 games (doubling the outright win total from 2013) and needs two more in final three to be bowl-eligible…FSU 27 Virginia 13

#14 LSU (+6) over #4 Alabama: Tide, though generally a coin-toss ATS overall and in the SEC, has traditionally been betting-gold at Death Valley. Nonetheless, Bengals have taken the money in 3 of last 4, home or away, facing Alabama. Elephants won 21-17 here in 2012 and beat the Tigers by three touchdowns last season. ‘Bama has lost exactly one conference game in each of the previous three years. Ole Miss is already an SEC game in the “L” column. State has a slight advantage passing, but also gives up 4.5 yards per carry on the ground. Tide averages 5.1 yards a tote. Last 3 contests here in this series have been decided by 6 or less. Crimson Trype responded, finally, after loss to the Rebels and near-miss at Arkansas by smoking A&M and besting the Vols by 14. The real question here is… in which quarter will Les Miles bust out da’ trickeration and will the play go for a first-down or maybe even a touchdown???!!! LSU meets an Olivia Newton-John Grease tune meets Weird Al Yankovic…”Hopelessly Revolted Bayou”?!...Tide 17 Tigers 16
#8 Notre Dame (+2) over #11 ARIZONA STATE: Pitchforks won a tight defensive battle in extras against Utah, while Irish survived Navy after looking like they were gonna’ blow the Middies out early. Only second true road game of the season for the Leprechauns, who probably should’ve beaten Florida State in the first one. Haveta’ figure both sides will be happy to see opponents that throw the ball this week after ND weathered 60 triple-option carries by Navy and State saw Utah basically abandon the passing game despite a close contest throughout the tilt. Despite returning just two starters on D and a paltry number of lettermen back, Todd Graham has ASU competing for a conference championship. The Beelzebubs have yielded just 36 total points over the last 3 games, but State shows a19-5 pass TD-to-INT ratio and Irish show 22-7, leading us to believe this one goes “over” the total. The difference might be Irish pass D, which has given up 11 aerial touchdowns and snagged 12 picks. Devils D has permitted 10 passing scores with just 4 interceptions…Rudy 38 ASU 31

#7 MICHIGAN STATE (-3) over #13 Ohio State: Rematch of 2013 Big Tentacle Conference Championship, won 34-24 by Sparty. Buckeyes bombed turnover-prone Illini while MSU was on a bye. OSU has posted seven straight games “over” the total, hitting the board for 50 or more in 5 of last 6. Spartans defense is holding up nicely (only 3 opponents have scored more than 17 points) despite losing six starters from last year’s squad. Marc Lawrence’s Playbook.Com shows Buckeyes covering 13 of last 13 with revenge against a better-than-.500 foe. Gotta’ think Spartans loss to CFB #4 Oregon appears more attractive than OSU’s early defeat by fading VirginiaTech. One thing’s for certain…there won’t be any stake-planting Buckeyes (now 20-1 SU in conference play the past 2+ seasons) to antagonize Michigan State, who has dropped just five games in November under now-7th-year coach Dantonio …MSU 31 OSU 27
#9 Kansas State (+6) over #6 TCU: UPSET PICK OF DA’ WEEK. Purple Persians have quietly moved into the AP Top Ten (#7 in the Selection Committee poll) and should they win out, they would have an argument to make the Fab Four, with their only defeat coming by 6 points to Auburn, should it win out or lose a nail-biter vs. ‘Bama). Maybe the Universe evened the score for the Froggies, who got a last second FG in Morgantown (and five West Virginia turnovers) last week to edge the determined Mountaineers 31-30, for the earlier 61-58 loss at Baylor. The Tadpoles might want some payback for last year’s 33-31 loss (though revenge doesn’t really apply to a team that got just four victories all season). ‘Cats have covered 9 of last 11 vs. ranked opponents and have a bye week next. Frogs saw their scoring production fall steadily from 2010’s 41 ppg to 2013’s 25 ppg, but are currently a bridesmaid to only Baylor, at 48 ppg. The scoring defenses are comparable on both sidelines and KSU held Auburn to 20 points (Tigers currently averaging almost 39 ppg).. Do TCU players while warming-up/stretching before each practice or actual game sing…”Heaaaaad, shoulders… knees and toads, knees and toads!”???!!! Or maybe it’s really… “Heaaaaaaad coaches, knees and toads, knees and toads!”…Wildcats 24 TCU 20

Meanwhile, CFB Selection Committee #1 Mississippi State and #11 Ole Miss host I-AA middle-of-the-packers UT-Martin and Presbyterian, respectively. In early November???!!! We know football schedules are set at least a few years in advance….but who puts an FCS squad on the slate in November???!!! We’d lump ‘Bama in  here as well, but we’ll give a little slack (emphasis on little) for hosting I-AA Western Carolina the week before the Iron Bowl vs. Auburn because the Catamounts are 6-3 overall, 4-1 in conference and challenging for the SoCon title. Though upon further review, WCU, while losing its opener respectably by 5 at South Florida, lost last week 51-0 to conference front-runners UT-Chattanooga (Mocs are currently #11 in the FCS Poll and opened the year with a 4-point defeat at Central Michgan)! We withdraw our “slack”!

If yer a fan of both college and pro football, yer in Heaven right now, in da’ midst of 27 straight days featuring at least one NCAA or NFL contest, starting last Thursday (10/30) and running thru 11/25 (da’ Tuesday before Thanksgiving)!
QB Jameis Winston was accused of shoplifting crab-legs and crawfish from a grocery store, leading to suspension from FSU’s baseball team. Eye-witness accounts  noted  Winston “appeared to pause to avoid walking in front of a deputy before leaving a Tallahassee supermarket without paying…”. Yep, he made a “defender” miss in the open check-out line!

Shortly after the New Year, Bobby Petrino was signed to his second shot at the helm of the Louisville Cardinals, but following his Arkansas snafu, his contract includes prohibitions vs. riding a motorcycle or even viewing Easy Rider, Sons of Anarchy, any of the Mad Max/Road-Warrior flicks, Magnum Force or…Wild Hogs!
Daylight Savings Time occurred in the wee hour of Sunday mornin’. We’re wonderin’ how many NCAA football teams would like to turn back da’ clock 60 minutes (or less) following Saturday’s results!

This week’s AP rankings had FCS club North Dakota State with 4 votes…tying Stanford and 3 more than SEC squads Florida (1) and Texas A&M (1).
Over the summer, Ron Artest…AKA Mensa Worm Priest…er…um…Metta World Peace…changed his name again…to The Pandas Friend…after getting’ a gig with a Chinese Basketball Association squad! Can some other sappy moniker swap such as UNICEF Care Bear be far down the pike???!!!

At the sportsbook counter…Arizona (+6 ½) lost by 10 to UCLA, costing us a three-team parlay that featured covers by Utah (+5 ½, losing by 3 in OT at ASU as noted above) and the Philly Beagles (-2 ½) over HOUSTON (Texans lost by 10). We were smart enough to park North Carolina +17 (lost by 20) at MIAMI and Illinois +28 ½ (lost by 41) at OHIO STATE on the same ticket, but Utah State -3 won by three touchdowns at HAWAII to cash the straight bet and Colorado State -7 (-6 ½ at time of last week’s blog) pushed at SAN JOSE STATE to turn UTEP -6 ½ (won by 21 over Southern Mist) into a straight bet. The remaining selections we looked last week at but didn’t play went 2-2. Money down this week on Weeziana Tech -3 ½ over UAB, Duke -3 over SYRACUSE, Air Force -6 over UNLV and  FRESNO STATE -2 ½ over San Jose State. Still catchin’ our eye…Utah State -7 over WYOMING (we ain’t buyin’ the blow-out upset of Fresno State), Wisconsin -16 ½ over PURDUE, Joja’ Sudden -11 over TEXAS STATE and Weeziana-Lafayette -15 over NEW MEXICO STATE.
Rocky Horror Picture Show meets the SF Giants World Series MVP…”Say!…any of you guys know how to… Madison Bumgarner?!”

Next week…a few thoughts on college hoops!



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