Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Vindy's Picks 2006 Conference Championships


MALIBU, California (AP)...Mad Max was at it again following an alcohol-fueled Thanksgiving dinner that saw the actor-producer shouting obscenities at a TV during the Boston College-Miami game and led to a second arrest for DUI. Mel Gibson became verbally aggressive with arresting officers, screaming the “F*cking BCS...the BCS is responsible for all the wars in the world. Are you a Bowl Championship Series voter, officer?!” Pollsters were up in arms following release of Gibson’s insensitive comments. Gibson offered a public apology the following day, but NCAA officials weren’t satisfied. The Reverend Jesse Jackson has invited the beleaguered actor to appear on a live airing of College Game Day, which Jackson himself will host in order to discuss “conference isolation in the sports industry”. In addition, the Braveheart star will conduct 400 hours of community service, delivering speeches about the hazards of drinking and driving while acting as a tackling dummy for several teams, BCS and non-BCS, headed into the bowl season!

Vindy was definitely in the holiday spirit and thankful as his Week 13 picks finished at a mighty fine 10-5-2 (117-118-8, .498 season). Once more into da’ breach before Da’ Bowls with....


MAC Championship (@ Detroit, MI)

Central Michigan over Ohio giving 3: Tough pick. Bobcats have run off seven straight victories (covering 6 of ‘em). Chippies have won 6 of last 7 and lost respectably to Boston College and Kentucky. Bobblecats beat the Illini on the road. CMU was plus-3 in turnovers while routing Ohio last year 31-10. A little closer now...Central Michigan 31 Ohio 24

C-USA Championship (@ Houston, TX)

Southern Miss over HOUSTON taking 4 1/2: While Vindicator elects to stay with his preseason choice to win Conference USA, he points out the Cougars squeaked past Rice in its opener and lost earlier this year at USM 31-27. The Eagles have rediscovered their offense of late after struggling in mid-season. Houston did nearly beat Miami on the road... Houston 31 Southern Miss 30

#1 Ohio State:
IDLE (next: da’ BCS Title game)

#2 Southern Cal over UCLA giving 13 ½: Other than 5-point loss by UCLA in the 2004 version, Trojans have dominated this series in recent years by 20-30 points. Bruins come in off a bye and back-to-back wins before that (following a 4-game slide before THAT). UCLA’s only loss in six home games on the season was to Wazzou. Trojans could possibly afford a ho-hum win, but won’t settle for one...USC 38 Bruins 16

#3 Michigan: IDLE (next: da’ Bowls)

SEC Championship (@ Atlanta, GA)#8 Arkansas over #4 Florida taking 3: Gators still have a “snowball’s chance” at National Title game berth, but kickoff is around halftime of the USC-UCLA match and Florida might be busy watching the scoreboard. Gators don’t have the kind of D that LSU put on the field to beat Arkansas. Pigs bounce back. In Little Rock, First Lady Huckabee smiles and changes the Piggly-Wiggly brand batteries in her new clock...Oink Oink 19 Crocs 17

#5 LSU: IDLE (next: da’ Bowls)

#6 LOUISVILLE over Connecticut giving 27: Don’t know how the Huskies covered a mere 3 ½ point spread vs. Cincinnati. Scarlet Knight hangover by the ‘Kats maybe. UConn’s best weapon is the run. We saw what Louisville did to West Virginia’s much-ballyhooed ground game. Cards’ worst enemy will be the new clock rules...Louisville 48 Dogs 13

#7 Wisconsin: IDLE (next: da’ Capital One Bowl)

Big 12 Championship (@ Kansas City, MO)
#19 Nebraska over #9 Oklahoma taking 4:
Finally, a game that won’t result in body bags for one side or the other! In past years, that “one side” has been the representative from the North Division. Sooners are 6-1 ATS in the last 7. Big Red has gone 5-2 vs. the number. Vindy’s a slow learner. The North shall rise again...Nebraska 31 OK 29

#10 Boise State: IDLE (next: da’ Bowls)

#11 Auburn: IDLE (next: da’ Bowls)

#12 Notre Dame: IDLE (next: da’ Bowls)

#13 Rutgers over #15 WEST VIRGINIA taking 8: Mounties got an ever-improving South Florida Bulls team courtesy of four turnovers, while the Knights posted a basically-flawless victory over Syracuse. Five years ago, WVU hung 80 (count ‘em, 80!) on Rutgers. We’ll take the team with more to play for...holy crap!...a Big Least title for...Rutgers 31 ‘Eers 28

#14 Virginia Tech: IDLE (next: da’ Bowls)

ACC Championship (@ Jacksonville, FL)
#16 Wake Forest over #23 Georgia Tech taking 3:
Bees have won 3 of last 4 (2-2 ATS). Deacons continue amazing run without preseason-projected starting backfield. Jackets QB Reggie Ball had a bad game vs. Joja’, which means he’ll probably rock the house this week. Or not...Wake 14 Insects 10

#17 Texas: IDLE (next: da’ Bowls)

#18 Tennessee: IDLE (next: da’ Bowls)

#20 BYU: IDLE (next: da’ Las Vegas Bowl)

#21 CAL over Stanford giving 29: The Trees have dented the scoreboard for more than 10 points only twice all year, both times on the road. Off consecutive defeats, Bears get well for the post-season. Traditionally, the away team in this series has owned the spread. Not this time...Cal 41 Cardinal 3

#22 Texas A&M: IDLE (next: da’ Bowls)

Oregon State over #24 HAWAII taking 8: UPSET SPECIAL. ‘Bows Colt Brennan’s passing has been slicker than the NBA’s new micro-fiber ball and he should get the three touchdowns he needs to reach the NCAA single-season TD record. Hawaii has only two spread losses, both at home. This will be the best defense the Rainbow Warriors have faced since opening seven-point loss at ‘Bama...Oregon State 28 Aloha 24

#25 Boston College: IDLE (next da’ Bowls)

The rest of the field...

NEW MEXICO STATE over Louisiana Tech giving 10 ½: Aggies have the second-best passing attack behind only Hawaii. Not good news for a Weeziana Tech team that got outscored by aforementioned ‘Bows and Nevada-Reno 103-17 before beating Fresno last week...NMSU 31 La Tech 13

Air Force over TEXAS CHRISTIAN taking 16 1/2: The Best Little Horned-Toad House in Texas is already headed for the Poinsettia Bowl. Pilots should be ashamed of themselves for losing outright at UNLV. And as punishment, Vindicator will supervise early morning strafing runs on elementary schools in Little Egg Harbor, New Jersey on Saturday until Vindy gets tired! Nation’s third-best rushing offense meets the nation’s third-best rushing defense. Toads can also run the ball...Frogs 34 USAF 31

Army over Navy taking 20 ½: Middies are still good, but are shadows of teams past. Weber watched the Cadets march easily down the field on its opening possession against Air Force, then fold up like origami when they fumbled at the Pilots 2-yard line and yielded a 98-yard return for TD. Also in the back of Vindy’s mind is the Black Knights’ stalwart effort in 4-point loss to Texas A&M. Neither side throws the ball except for token plays. Should be a quick scrimmage that allows Army to stay within three touchdowns...Navy 24 Army 13

Louisiana-Monroe over LOUISIANA-LAFAYETTE taking 3: Nothing at stake here except braggin’ rights among the former directional-Weezianas. Lafayette has the better conference win-loss record, but has been actually been outscored by 6 total points against Sun Belt opponents. Cajuns finally won outright in ‘05 following three straight defeats at the hands of UL-Cornrow...Louisiana-French Guy 17 UL-Monroe 16

SAN JOSE STATE over Fresno State giving 4 ½: Nice to see perennial-WAC doormat-poster team San Jose State posting a 7-4 record....with only a pair of defensive starters returning from last year! Hats off to coach Dick Tomey, who should be nominated for Coach-of-da’-Year honors in this prognosticator’s humble opinion. Spartans have won 9 of last 13, going back to last year, and nearly dropped probably-Fiesta-bound Boise. The Bulldogs ...who might’ve beaten Oregon in previous years...and certainly would’ve defeated UDUB...continue to disappoint, bottoming out with earlier 13-12 loss to (GASP!) Utah State!...SJSU 30 Fres-not-no, but HELL-no! 20

Troy over FLORIDA INTERNATIONAL giving 12 1/2: LOCK OF DA’ WEEK. Panthers are winless...and will stay that way. With a victory, Troy ties Middle Tennessee for Sun Belt title, but goes to the New Orleans Bowl on basis of defeating MTSU just a week ago. Troy is only 2-3 ATS as chalk and has only one conference outright loss. FIU is 3-8 against the line and probably should’ve established one of those “exploratory committees” to determine if there was any interest in actually supporting it as a I-A football team...Trojans 31 FIU 10

Colorado State over SAN DIEGO STATE giving 3: Two NASA attempts from Pasadena to contact the Mars Global Surveyor failed this past week. Funny, coaches at San Diego State and Colorado State must be using the same equipment to reach their respective teams’ offenses. Rams are averaging 11 ppg over last five. Aztecs are lightin’ it up for 7 ppg over last pair...Rams 17 SDSU 10

Shortly before the Longhorns were eliminated from the conference championship race, President Bush blasted Oklahoma, noting , “the Sooners should not be trusted to play well in a BCS bowl because they have no idea how to win in the Big 12 Title game!”

In local news, there is talk about scuttling the UNLV football program. Vindy and one of his co-workers decided the answer was not dissolution, but rather better scheduling. A few proposals for the non-conference slate...Duke, Florida International, Stanford, Temple, Utah State and after last Sunday’s 4th quarter collapse...the New York Giants! (Thanks for the idea, Ken!)

Around the horn...Philadelphia Mayor John Street called National League MVP Ryan Howard “Ron” several times in a speech commending the ballplayer last week. Ryan has likely never uttered the phrase “Sit on it, Potsie!”, but it would’ve perhaps been an appropriate response from the Phillies player after the third or fourth reference from His Honor to the wrong moniker!


Best Weekly Effort: The Sin City Soothsayer saved his best for last, logging a decent 10-5-2 record in Week 13!

Worst Weekly “Effort”: Weber’s Week 1 picks (5-14) were such a crime, Michigan high school cheerleaders turned them into a cheer so they could remember them long enough to report them to police!

WEBER-FRIENDLIES (Best percentage on the predicted side of the spread; minimum 7 at-bats in the forecast): This season’s “You’re in Good Hands” Award goes to...drum roll, please...the Boise State Broncos at 8-1(.889). Second place to Nebraska (8-2, .800) and a surprise Honorable Mention to the Injuns of Florida State (6-2, .750)! Combined, the aforementioned trio posted 22 forecast wins in 26 tries!

FLAME-THROWERS (Worst percentage on the predicted side of da’ spread): This year’s “Grillmaster Supreme” Award (the scorch marks are still on Weber’s wallet!) goes to those !!@&*$#! Frightenin’ Irish (3-9, .250...ironically, the pesky Leprechauns got “Honorable Mention” honors last season at 7-3!!!). “Suckin’ Place” to the Steers of Texas (3-8, .273) and “Dishonorable Mention” to (Holy Crap...a tie!) the Oregon Decoys and the Joja’ Tech Bees, both at 3-6 (.333).

“Locked in a Box?”: The Mormons went flat in mere two-point win over rival Utes to send the lock record down to 8-5!

Shoppe Talk: Wow! Da’ Irish and Da’ Longhorns both registered forecast dubyas (as opposed to Dubyas) in Week 13!

Vindy’s Championship Week Best Bets: Last Week: 1-3-1 Season: 31-28-3 (.525)
Last week’s bragging obviously caught up to our flustered forecaster. Army +20 ½ over Navy, NEW MEXICO STATE -10 ½ over Louisiana Tech

Vindicator takes his annual hiatus to change the points and plugs on the tea leaves, but fear not, loyal readers...the Weber Kid promises to return circa December 16 with his infamous bowl picks! Don’t touch that dial!

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Vindy's Picks Week 13-2006


LITTLE ROCK, Arkansas (UPI)...
Friends close to Janet Huckabee, wife of the outbound Republican state governor, revealed to reporters that she wants the highly-coveted Razorbacks wall-clock that sounds the soooooeeeey-pig call on the hour as part of a "housewarming" gift upon moving into her new residence! The first lady has come under fire of late for the gift registry at Target and Dillard’s. No stranger to controversy as Governor Huckabee himself has been called to the carpet for previous ethics issues, an irritated First Lady shot back, saying "Question my morals, but don’t question my support for our team!" A spokesperson for the Governor’s office said, "Mrs. Huckabee has the right to know the time in any manner she chooses." An anonymous Target employee leaked information suggesting the registry also includes a monogrammed trough bearing the school logo!

Boy! Was that Vonage comparison last week timely or what????!!!! Our stupefied seer staggered to 6-11 (107-113-6, .486 season), taking four bad beats...two by a half-point, two by a single point each! Vindicator blames the faux pas on lack of concentration due to his invitation to the Tom Cruise-Katie Holmes wedding! (By the way, Suri Cruise had the Hokies layin’ the points over Wake! Oh wait...that was Britney Spears’ baby!). Jacksonville Jaguars coach Jack Del Rio is 2-0 since sporting a suit on the sidelines. Hoping for similar results, the Weber Kid dusts off an old three-piece and publishes...


MIAMI over #18 Boston College taking 4:
Everything Thanksgiving, a big turkey receives a presidential pardon. Maybe Team Coral Gables should make a quick stop at the White House before hosting the Eagles...’Canes 18 BC 17

FRI. NOV. 24
#5 ARKANSAS over #9 Louisiana State (PK):
Two of the country’s best stop-squads face-off. Can’t see Houston Nutt letting the Razorbacks slack-off now they’re locked into the conference championship game. Bengals were Vindy’s preseason pick to take the SEC. Only two conference teams are allowed in the BCS bowls. A Tiger win would help, but they’ll need two losses from Florida or an Arkansas loss in the SEC title game. Looks like a punt-fest a la LSU-Auburn earlier this season....Pigs 10 LSU 6

Texas A&M over #11 TEXAS taking 13: Steers get their starting freshman-phenom trigger-man back, but it’s tough to argue with Aggies’ 6-0 spread-win run...Longhorns 27 A&M 21

#23 NEBRASKA over Colorado giving 15: Remember when both teams would be highly-ranked for this one and it meant something?! Maybe the Buffs need another controversy or scandal or something to instigate better play. "Paging Ms. Hnida...Ms. Katie Hnida to the white courtesy phone, please."...Big Red 31Bison 10

SAT. NOV. 25
#1 Ohio State:
IDLE (next Da’ National Championship Game!)

#2 Michigan: IDLE (next Da’ Bowls!)

#3 USC over #6 Notre Dame giving 7 1/2: Collective win-loss record of Trojans’ victims to-date: 57-44 (.564). Ditto for Irish victims: 53-59 (.473). Leprechauns’ one loss came at home to current-#2 Michigan. Troy’s only loss came by two at unranked Oregon State. USC ends the Buckeyes-Wolverines BCS rematch talk... USC 27 Irish 17

FLORIDA STATE over #4 Florida taking 9 1/2: Injuns have suffered very disappointing year that has cost OC Jeff Bowden his job and no doubt led to calls for his daddy’s resignation as head coach. Money’s coming in on the Gators, but we like the ‘Noles to give this game anything they have left...including a season’s worth of frustration .... because unlike previous tilts this season (after Miami opener), this match means something to State...Gators 16 Squaws 13

South Florida over #7 WEST VIRGINIA taking 20 ½: Bulls loss to Louisville gives Vin reason to pause on this pick..and it might well be a "wish I had it back" for that reason, but we like the Mounties to play conservatively with no chance at the BCS Championship and simply win out to get the Big Least crown and its accompanying BCS bowl ...’Eers 38 USF 17

#8 Louisville over PITT giving 12: Number’s somewhat lower than expected by this prophet. Mounties averaged nearly 10 yards per carry at Pitt. Things are all knotted up atop the Big East and Cards can take care of business by simply winning here, having already beaten West Virginia then hoping the Mounties can beat Rutgers next week... Red Birds 35 Panthers 13

#10 Wisconsin: IDLE (next: da’ Capital One Bowl)

NEVADA-RENO over #12 Boise State taking 2 1/2: Wolfpack can end Broncos undefeated season. BCS officials hope they will. Boise’s do-everything RB Ian Johnson will play while wearing a flak jacket over his ribs. A Fiesta bid is hanging in the balance for a non-Big Six conference team. Maybe next year...Reno 38 Boise 35

#13 Oklahoma over OKLAHOMA STATE giving 6: Adrian Peterson will not play. Taking a few liberties with a quote from "Flash Gordon"..." Professor Weber says the absence of the Sooners starting backfield ‘is no cause..for alarm’." Watch out for improving Cowpokes next season...OK 24 Cowboys 12

#14 Auburn: IDLE (next vs. Florida, SEC Championship)

Syracuse @ #15 RUTGERS: OFF

#16 Georgia Tech over GEORGIA taking 1 ½: At least the Bees know which quarterback will start (though they still don’t know what they’ll get from him!). Dawgs came out of the ashes to smash Auburn last week, but nothing else among their results on the season screams "Go with Joja’!"...Wreck 13 UGA 10

#17 VIRGINIA TECH over Virginia giving 17: Both teams have covered four of their last five coming in. Edge to the home team off the huge road victory at Wake Forest and having the much-better D...Tech 24 Cavs 3

#19 TENNESSEE over Kentucky giving 18 ½: Vindy has been off the Vols most of the season , but we think they can pound porous Wildcats’ defense that gave up 40 in near-loss to Weeziana-Monroe...Tennessee 41 Mildcats 17

#20 Wake Forest over MARYLAND taking 1: Terps have won 5 of last 6 games decided by less than a touchdown. Call Vindicator crazy, but we still prefer Wake’s rushing game and stout defense and we’re staying on the Demon Deacons despite meltdown at home against the Hokies...Deacons 17 Box Turtles 13

#21 Brigham Young over UTAH giving 11: LOCK OF DA’ WEEK. Coogs have 11 turnovers in 11 games. For the past few seasons, the Utes have been in the BCS chase, while the Mormons have been home in the post-season. This season, Utah’s still bowling, but revenge is sweet for...Cougars 35 Utes 16

#22 California: IDLE (next vs. Stanford 12/2)

South Carolina over #24 CLEMSON taking 5 1/2: UPSET SPECIAL OF DA’ WEEK. Brawl (won by Clemson 13-9) kept both sides from the post-season last year. Vindicator was wrong when he wrote off Gamecocks’ chances of an upset a few weeks ago. Promising season for the Tigers fizzled with back-to-losses earlier and the return to the rankings will be short-lived...SC 23 Clemson 20

Purdue over #25 HAWAII taking 17: The Islanders have trounced opponents by an average of 36 ppg, but Boilers have sufficient offensive weapons to make a track-meet outta’ this ...’Bows 48 Purdue 41


As the final scores rolled in during Week 12's bust, Vin did his best Charlie Brown impersonation, quipping, "Aaaaaagghhh! Every pick I touch gets ruined!"

In May, the maternal parents of the NBA’s LeBron James and Amare Stoudemire were sentenced the same day for previous DUI arrests. Apparently, they’re looking to start a new chapter of MADD...Mothers Advocating Drunk Driving (Alright, alright! Save the hate-mail for somebody who cares!)

The Buckeyes were called for a rare "roughing the center" on an early Michigan 4th-and-13 last week. Vindy hates those big, gaudy flower arrangements in the middle of the table and plans to get flagged for "roughing the centerpiece" during his Thanksgiving Day dinner!

Some donor nicknamed "Mattress Mack" is forcing University of North Texas to rename its stadium after recently-deposed HC Darrell Dickey to maintain the rather-sizable monetary gift he’s given the school. Can ya hear the broadcasters saying "Welcome to a perfect Fall afternoon as the Mean Green hosts Louisiana-Lafayette at the Dick"???!!!

"Locked in a Box?": Vindy posts his 3rd straight lock win on the strength of Broncos’ cover over Utah State to go to 8-4 (.667) on the year!

Shoppe Talk: Those !@&^$@!!* Leprechauns let Vindy down again, missing by a half-point over Army to go 2-9 for the forecast!

Vindy’s Week 13 Best Bets: Last Week: 2-1-1 Season: 30-25-2 (.545)
Air Force -10 1/2 over UNLV, New Mexico State -6 1/2 over UTAH STATE, Mississippi State +3 over OL’ MISS, BUFFALO +16 over Central Michigan, Cincinnati -3 ½ over UCONN

(If you’re keeping score at home, over the last three weeks, Vindicator’s "lock" picks and "best bets" have gone a combined 12-4-1 for a blazing 75% win rate!)

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Vindy's Picks Week 12-2006


LAS VEGAS, Nevada (CNN)...A wax figure of Sin City’s own college football forecaster, the Vegas Vindicator, was attacked and damaged by an unidentified patron at Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museum yesterday. Video cameras captured the surprising assault on the figure and show the man charging the figure, knocking it to the ground and pummeling it with his fists before bolting out a fire exit. A facility spokesperson said most of the damage to the figure was sustained by the coins, dice, darts, Tarot cards and magic-ball that the real-life soothsayer uses to predict the weekly games. The aggression comes on the heels of a similar pre-Election Day defilement of the likeness of President Bush. Authorities have postulated theories that the incident is the work of a copycat, a jealous bookie seeking symbolic revenge for Weber’s 7-3 “best bet” record the past two weeks or a bettor fed up with losing money on Vindy’s regular Top 25 selections! Originally located in the museum among Gary Coleman, “Mini-Me”, Michael J. Fox and Richard Simmons, a rattled Weber Kid asked that his repaired wax statue be placed behind likenesses of the Wisconsin Badgers offensive line!

Vindy’s 13-8-1 tally for Week Eleven (101-102-6, .497) gives him hope and has our fearless forecaster hangin’ on to the prospect of finishing over .500 on the season tighter than former BoSox 1B Doug Mientkiewicz to the final out of the 2004 World Series as he presents...

(Sponsored by Vonage...a couple of smart picks...among many, many stupid ones!)
#8 West Virginia over PITT giving 10 1/2:
Panthers allowed UConn to run for 317 yards in double-overtime loss last week. Not a good omen when hosting one of the top ground games in the country this week. Vindy thanks the Mounties for allowing two fourth quarter TDs to Cincy, salvaging a push from the jaws of a forecast loss for Weber. In the Backyard Brawl, it’s...West Virginia 28 Pitt 14

SAT. NOV. 18
#2 Michigan over #1 OHIO STATE taking 6 1/2:
A story by the Associated Press recently revealed the Big Blue defensive backs bond by playing chess. Ironically, the Buckeyes do a little bonding themselves by playing “Rock ‘Em, Sock ‘Em Robots!” (If you’re a reader under 40-years-old, look it up on the ‘Net!). Potentially a great game. Not sure Big Blue can stop Troy Smith and the Bucks’ air game...OSU 20 Michigan 17

West Carolina @ #3 FLORIDA: No line.

#17 California over #4 USC taking 5 ½: Both teams have recently suffered shocking losses. Minus the ugly season-opening defeat to Tennessee, Bears had been on a mission and looked like the team to beat in thePAC-10. We still believe that’s the case...Cal 19 Trojans 16

#5 Arkansas over MISSISSIPPI STATE giving 14 1/2: Average margin in Bulldogs’ games this season is 9 and less-than-5 over last 3. State comes in off the bye week. Vindy senses no letdown in charging Hogs though and expects this final to be closer to State’s 42-18 loss to West Virginia than its 34-31 loss to Kentucky...Arkansas 27 Mississippi State 3

#6 NOTRE DAME over Army giving 32 1/2: How in the world Army beat Kent State at home and Baylor on the road is still a mystery. Brady Quinn has reportedly been asked to star in a remake of “Win One for the Gipper”. Given Weber’s inability to correctly pick the Irish ATS, we’d simply ask him to “Win One (ATS) for the Vinder!” Catholics have covered against the other two academies, why not here?...Irish 48 Cadets 7

#7 Rutgers over CINCINNATI giving 7: Depending upon whose stats ya look at, Bearkats are either 6-1-2 or 7-1-1 ATS. Cincinnati turned it over four times in Morgantown and were down big early. Knights’ defense is certainly capable of forcing Bearkats into similar situation this week...Piscataway Paladins 27 Cincy 13

Mississippi over #9 LSU taking 27 1/2: Despite 3-7 SU record (including recent “W” over I-AA Northwestern State), Rebels are 3-1 ATS in their last 4 (maybe they didn’t like being embarrassed in an earlier publication of Vindy’s Picks!). Bengals are playing extremely well on defense and stuffed Kentucky’s offense altogether. We like the rested Rebels...Tigers 28 Ol’ Miss 7

South Florida over #10 LOUISVILLE taking 16 1/2: Oh sure. Allow the Knights to rally from early 18-point deficit. Where was that defense when Vindy was calling an outright West Virginia victory, hmmmmm?????!!! USF should’ve beaten Rutgers, but that was at home. Bulls did lose by 17 at Cincinnati...Birds 29 USF 22

#11 Texas: IDLE (next vs. Texas A&M 11/24)

#12 WISCONSIN over Buffalo giving 38: Vindicator watched the Badgers-Iowa game on the telly. The NCAA Cheese-Heads were fortunate to get by Iowa in the wake of un-Badger-like poor tackling and a blown officiating call that allowed Hawkeyes 1st TD drive to continue. Wisky breaks half-a-century here...Badgers 54 Buffalo 10

#13 BOISE STATE over Utah State giving 37: LOCK OF DA’ WEEK. The latest issue of ESPN: Da’ Mag notes Broncos running back Ian Johnson crochets (shades of former Rams defensive star Rosie Greer!), plays trombone and wields a nifty pipe-wrench. And that’s just in the huddle! Finally, a team that Boise can clobber ATS...BSU51 USU 6

#14 WAKE FOREST over #19 Virginia Tech taking 1 1/2: With blowout (and shutout!) over the Injuns, Deacons posted their first-ever 9-win season. Weber is hard-pressed to go against streaking Wake squad, especially at home. Unless there’s a breakdown on Wake’s special teams...The Forest 24 Hokies 16

#15 Auburn over ALABAMA giving 3: Four picks and hobbling Kenny Irons helped create Auburn’s disaster vs. Joja’. Tide sporting a nice defense but miss Brody Croyle’s leadership on offense and Tigers are still far-and-away better on that side of the ball...Auburn 19 ‘Bama 10

#16 Oklahoma over BAYLOR giving 20: Vindy oscillated badly on this pick. Bears have dropped five straight against the line and are 3-7 ATS overall. Sooners haven’t had to spot this many since late September vs. Middle Tennessee. Baylor has allowed 152 points in its last three games, all outright losses...OK 38 Bears 14

Duke over #18 GEORGIA TECH taking 27: Nope. Vin just can’t bring himself to lay nearly 30 with Bees off very physical 7-0 win over the Tarheels and a Duke squad that’s 4-5 ATS. ‘Jackets only beat Samford 38-6...GT 38 Duke 12

#21 Maryland over #20 BOSTON COLLEGE taking 7: Eagles are perfect SU and ATS in four games at Chestnut Hill. Last seven matches for the Terps have been decided by an average of 3 points, with Box Turtles winnin’ six of ‘em outright...MD 17 BC 15

VANDERBILT over #22 Tennessee taking 8: Volunteers are in revenge mode for 2005 loss to Commodores that cost ‘em a bowl berth. Vandy’s record of very close conference games this year gets it Vindy’s nod... Tennessee 22 Admirals 17

#23 BYU over New Mexico giving 26: The only question here is how motivated the Coogs will be given a likely less-than-deserved berth in the Las Vegas Bowl, where they will probably get points vs. whatever PAC-10 also-ran they face. We’d maybe consider the Lobos in Albuquerque. We like the Mormons to name the score in final home appearance for seniors that have suffered mightily the previous three seasons...Cougars 44 New Mexico 13

#24 Nebraska: IDLE (next vs. Colorado 11/24)

#25 Clemson: IDLE (next vs. South Carolina)


In news related to the lead story, witnesses noted the museum assailant bore a “striking resemblance” to Texas Tech hoops coach Bobby Knight! Eye-witness accounts have the unknown attacker jamming a finger under the figure’s chin in an effort to get the wax figure to look at him, yelling at the figure then getting frustrated and shoving it to the floor!

BTW, the Hurricanes player bond by challenging each other to ...Grand Theft Auto! (...they sometimes play the video game version too!!)

Columbus officials have asked three near-campus convenience stores to stop selling bottled domestic brews for the rest of the year so inebriated fans don’t hurl empties at one another. One official said something akin to “Our fans drink cheap beer so foreign ones aren’t an issue.” Well by golly, sounds like an opportunity to expand the fans’ cultural horizons by lowering prices on imports!

To reduce the incidence of rabies, the Chinese have implemented a “one dog policy”. Fine. Let’s offer the folks in Beijing...Duke, Temple or UNLV!!!

“Locked in a Box?”: Vindicator bumps up the record to 7-4 behind Wake Forest’s 30-0 trouncing of the Injuns.

Shoppe Talk: Steers and Irish both dig in at 2-8!

Vindy’s Week 12 Best Bets: Last Week: 3-2 Season: 28-24-1 (.538)
Nevada-Reno -20 over LA. TECH, Oklahoma State +6 over TEXAS TECH, East Carolina -2 ½ over RICE, SOUTH CAROLINA -15 1/2 over Middle Tennessee State

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Vindy's Picks Week 11-2006


SOUTH BEND, Indiana (BBC)...A recently-aired "60 Minutes" interview that included reference to the vocabulary of Charlie Weis during profanity-laden sideline tirades has landed the Frightenin’ Irish coach a spot in a 30-second ad for Orbit gum. The coach’s language has not only embarrassed officials at Notre Dame, but has reportedly caused the Touchdown Jesus statue on campus to cover its ears and has become fodder for an episode of Comedy Central’s "South Park". Weis, a Garden State native who ironically got his degree in communications from the local Catholic university and taught English back home in New Jersey, appears in the spot alongside the British bombshell who asks the question, "Dirty mouth?!". He has also been rumored to have accepted a bit part in a future showing of the "Sopranos" on HBO! Reporters were unable to reach the coach for comment, but attempts to contact Weis by phone were met with an answering machine message that can’t printed!

Fresh off a 9-11 Week Ten (88-94-5, .483 season) and fired up after being called a "prognostication imbecile for not recognizing the University of Pyongpang as a Top 25 team" by the North Korean Foreign Ministry, Vindicator hopes to not post 100 losses before hitting the century mark in forecast wins this year and submits...

(Caution: High Explosive Picks. This Side Toward Sportsbook!)

#3 Louisville over #15 RUTGERS giving 6:
Cards made Miami’s vaunted defense (the one on the field, not the one in the court room) look terrible. Knights are #2 nationally in total D and 4th in passing D. They’ll need every inch and the strength of their own rushing attack to win. Louisville’s putting up 10 more ppg in conference play and allowing 7 more ppg in Big Least competition than Rutgers. Weber wants nothing more than a Knights victory, but apologizes to the all the fans at Exit 9B of the Jersey Turnpike and calls...Redbirds 34 NJ Paladins 24

Wyoming over #25 BYU taking 19 ½: Tough to go against a blazing Mormons team on a 5-0 ATS run playing at home. The Mountain Jest’s top total defense and top pass stoppers wander into Provo to face the conference’s #1 total offense and #1 passing game. Coogs will have to run effectively. They will...but not enough to beat the number ...BYU 24 Wyoming 17

SAT. NOV. 11
#1 Ohio State over NORTHWESTERN giving 23:
After scare from the Illini, Jim Tressel won’t mess around here and will put this outta’ reach early as State charges into Michigan game...Buckeyes 48 NW 10

#2 Michigan over INDIANA giving 19: Wolverines’ last match before probable BCS semi-final at Columbus on 11/18. Hoosiers were brought back to reality by shellacking at Minnesota last week. Lloyd Carr can’t afford to pull the A-team defense out early in this one. Out on a limb with Big Blue sucking as a double-digit fave...Michigan 38 Indy 13

#4 Texas over KANSAS STATE giving 17 1/2: With Louisville still having another opportunity or three to be upset, ‘Horns can still look for return to the BCS title game. Rocking the Wildcats would weigh in their favor. Texas would’ve beaten Oklahoma State by about 30 had the Cowpokes not managed an 89-yard kickoff return for TD... Steers 44 KSU 16

#5 AUBURN over Georgia giving 13: Collectively, the Tigers and Dawgs have a single spread win between ‘em in their last 13 tries! We’ll take Aubie, who at least has momentum over Joja’, who has lost four of five outright and appears to have quit on the season...Auburn 30 UGA 10

South Carolina over #6 FLORIDA taking 13 1/2: Arkansas staved off South Carolina behind a 200+ yards-rushing effort by RB Darren McFadden. Gators have no such ground weapon and are 1-5 in their last 6 ATS...Crocs 20 SC 17

#7 USC over #21 Oregon giving 7 ½: The straight up triumph by the Beavers has to provide the Mallards with some confidence, but bad defeats at Washington State and Cal suggest the Decoys aren’t quite ready...Troy 30 Quack Attack 21

ARIZONA over #8 California taking 13 ½: This is more of a nod to Arizona’s defense, which, minus trip to Baton Rouge in early September, has been pretty good all season. Bears have USC up next...Cal 21 AZ 10

AIR FORCE over #9 Notre Dame taking 11 ½: Including the 2006 win and cover over Navy, ND is only 3-4 ATS vs. the service academies (mostly the Middies and Flyboys) over the last few seasons. The Pilots are 1-2 ATS at home in the last 3. Catholics’ only spread win in the last six games was over Navy. Expect Bono, Ozzy Osbourne, Eric Cartman, Pitt QB Tyler Palko and fellow-Orbit alum Snoop Dogg to become assistant coaches under Mr. Weis in 2007!... Leprechauns 28 USAF 24

Cincinnati over #10 WEST VIRGINIA taking 18: Before the loss to Louisville, WVU coach Rodriguez said something akin to "there might be some fans who wanna’ toss me off the Westover Bridge (in Morgantown), but I’m not jumpin’ off." Upon further review of game-film, looks like Coach was sporting a bungee cord under his clothes when he got off the bus in West Virginia...Mounties 27 Bearkats 13

#11 ARKANSAS over #13 Tennessee giving 5 1/2: Razorbacks didn’t lose any steam behind back-up QB Casey Dick last week. He’ll start this one too as freshman QB Mustain grabs a little pine, at least at kickoff. Vols might be flat now that they’re outta’ the race for the SEC East...Hogs 27 Tennessee 20

#12 LSU over Alabama giving 17: Two great defenses go toe-to-toe down on the Bayou. This could easily be a 12-9 affair, but Bengals offense will far exceed that of ‘Bama. Alabammy hasn’t been limited to single-digits yet. Of Tide’s 16 points last week, 7 came via an interception returned for touchdown. In light of a Bronx Zoo research study showing elephants recognize themselves in mirrors and use the mirrors to explore hidden parts of themselves, State plans to stock the visitors’ sidelines with reflective glass...LSU 27 ‘Bama 6

SAN JOSE STATE over #14 Boise State taking 13 ½: Broncos have covered only one of four away from the azure home-field. If Spartans can grab the straight up win here, their only likely remaining loss would be at Hawaii. Boise spreads have been droppin’ like Olympic coverage TV ratings. The outright SJSU victory wouldn’t shock this prophet...Potato-Mashers 41 No Longer San Josie State & Da’ Pussycats 33

#16 Wisconsin over IOWA (PK): Badgers starting QB Stocco is out. UW intentionally ran offside on consecutive kickoffs to run out the 1st half clock vs. Penn State and JoPa took a helmet in the knee from a Wisky defender that did Jeff Golooly proud! Maybe the Badgers have a similar plan for Hayden Frye and his boys! We’ll still side with huge Wisconsin linemen over disappointing Hawkeyes...Badgers 17 Iowa 9

#17 OKLAHOMA over Texas Tech giving 9: Red Raiders’ 5-4 spread record reflects the inconsistency of this Tech squad. Will it be the one that scored 31 in road win at College Station over A&M or the one that posted all of two FGs in 30-6 loss at now 1-9 Colorado?...Sooners 31 Tech 20

#18 Wake Forest over FLORIDA STATE taking 7 ½: LOCK OF DA’ WEEK. Hmmm... destruction of Virginia squad that wasn’t expected to do much anyway notwithstanding, why do the Injuns continue to lay points. Deacons looking like class of the ACC...Wake 24 ‘Noles 21

North Carolina over #19 GEORGIA TECH taking 13 ½: ‘Heels on 2-0 ATS run following 0-5-1 start. If Vin backs da’ Bees, he knows Reggie Ball will have one those four-interception games. Gotta’ take the points...GT 20 UNC 9

Kent State over #20 VIRGINIA TECH taking 28 1/2: Surprising Flashes were averaging 32 ppg during a five-game win streak before backsliding to 6.5 ppg in two straight defeats to Ohio and Buffalo! Weather in Blacksburg might force Hokies to throw a shutout to cover...Tech 27 Kent State 3

#22 BOSTON COLLEGE over Duke giving 28: In July, Duke QB Zack Asack was suspended for plagiarism. Wouldn’t have been a problem if he’d been copying Vince Young or Matt Leinart! Devils get confused and break the offensive huddle with five guys and a round, orange ball right about this time of the year...BC 38 Blue Devils 0

#23 MARYLAND over Miami giving 3: Vindicator originally asked John Kerry to tell a joke about the Hurricanes in this spot, but eventually backed out, fearing the political figure would botch the punch-line...Terps 23 ‘Canes 16

Nebraska over #24 TEXAS A&M (PK): Huskers have made too much progress this year to falter against improving Aggies...Nebraska 19 A&M 16


The headline of an April 12 AP story read..."Bush knew trailers weren’t WMD proof". The Bush administration claimed trailers captured soon after the fall of Baghdad proved Iraq had weapons of mass destruction, even though US intelligence officials had strong evidence that was not the case. (And boy, was John Madden pissed! He STILL hasn’t gotten his Player of the Game pictures back!)

Bengals WR Chad Johnson was fined $5K for placing a "Ocho Cinco" tag on his jersey and having Carson Palmer yank it off in front of cameras just before kickoff of Cincy’s loss to Atlanta. Not to be outdone, the Weber Kid will have former Lions QB Todd Blackledge rip off "Mas Tequila" from his own jersey to reveal "Vindicator!" at whatever post-season venue Penn State lands in!

In January 2007, former NFL Commish Paul Tagliabue will receive college sports’ top award, the "Teddy". Now...while Vindicator is all for Title IX and stuff, he really doesn’t want to know what the 65-year-old Tags is gonna’ do with a piece of racy lingerie! Kind of an odd choice in this forecaster’s humble opinion for the NCAA to use to bestow an honor, but...hey...what’s the Weber Kid know???!!! (Can’t wait to see that puppy hangin’ in Tagliabue’s trophy case!!!)

"Locked in a Box?": Vin goes to 6-4 (.600) behind Razorbacks cover over South Carolina (barely!)

Shoppe Talk: Texas is just beggin’ to be the main course for a BBQ at 2-7. The Irish get a week off, but hang around at 2-6. The Sooners are back in the Shoppe at 2-6-1and the Ducks are quickly lining up in the shooting gallery at 2-6.

Vindy’s Week 11 Best Bets: Last Week: 4-1 Season: 25-22-1 (.531)
SAN DIEGO STATE -7 ½ over unlv, Rice +14 over TULSA, Iowa State +8 ½ over COLORADO, New Mexico State +11 ½ over FRESNO STATE, Washington State -1 ½ over ARIZONA STATE

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Vindy's Picks Week 10-2006


NEW YORK, New York (Reuters)..."Sold out" signs confront average consumers across the nation as coaches, from Berkeley to Boston and Ann Arbor to Austin, vying desperately to get their teams to the big money bowls have raided toy stores and bought up dozens of TMX Elmos to use as leverage with other coaches and pollsters casting BCS votes. Even those seeking to exploit buyers and scalp the highly-coveted dolls that once simply vibrated and laughed ,but now roll on the floor slamming its fists on the ground and beg the ticklers to stop, on E-Bay are finding limited quantities and are crying "personal foul" and "unsportsmanlike conduct". While not exactly "capitalism at its best", it does suggest a disturbing trend that some schools are willing to pull out all the stops to get bids to high-dollar bowls. Made by Fischer-Price and Mattel at an approximate MSRP of $40 per doll, even the athletic budgets of Sun Belt institutions will support such practices!

Holy crap! Can ya believe we’re already into Week 10!!!! The dogs finally had their breakout ATS week, covering 12 of the 18, sending Weber to 7-11 and 79-83-5 (.487) on the year...


Fresno State over #14 BOISE STATE taking 26 1/2:
Broncos are 3-1 ATS in their last 4 and have revenge factor for ‘05 27-7 loss to the Bulldogs. Don’t know what happened this season to "anybody, anywhere, anytime", but they’re lookin’ more like Team "Henny Youngman". If defending WAC champ Fresno has any pride and any motivation left at all, it shows up now... BSU 45 Fresno 23

#3 West Virginia over #5 LOUISVILLE taking 1 1/2:
Cards lost two wide-outs for this, but those "pass-catchers" were insignificant in the big scheme to the team effort anyhow. Can’t contest the chalk status for Louisville at home, particularly in light of how bad it made Miami look. Mounties come in with their starting backfield intact. Redbirds don’t. Dogs have covered 9 of the 13 non-Saturday games thus far this season, including 8 of the last 10 (pending the Broncos-Bulldogs result)...’Eers 20 Sluggers 17

#1 Ohio State over ILLINOIS giving 26 ½:
No question, freshman QB "Juice" Williams has given UI a much-need lift, leading them to consecutive conference road ATS wins over Penn State and Wisconsin. Still...we can’t go against Buckeyes laying four touchdowns against lower-tier Big Ten club...OSU 45 Illini 12

#2 MICHIGAN over Ball State giving 34: Wolverines haven’t beaten anybody this season by this many. Cardinals 5-3 ATS but haven’t faced a defense like this...Big Blue 45 BSU 6

Oklahoma State taking #4 TEXAS taking 17: ‘Horns are 4th in the AP but still have ground to make up at #7 in the BCS. They’ll need a decisive win this week to stay close. Have to wonder how long Cowpokes can hold the pace that got ‘em near win in OT over A&M and upset win over Nebraska...Texas 34 Oklahoma State 20

#6 AUBURN over Arkansas State giving 31: Indians are a better team than they showed in 29-0 loss at Florida Atlantic and want to prove that. Unfortunately, Auburn fought for its life at Ol’ Miss last week and will flex a little muscle this weekend...Tigers 47 ASU 7

VANDERBILT over #7 Florida taking 15 ½: Major money’s coming in on the ‘Dores, who are 1-2 ATS at home this year and that speaks to not a lot of confidence in the Gators, who’ve gone 1-5 against the number in their last 6. Florida sports a top-flight defense. Van-Dee ain’t bad either...Crocs 20 Admirals 10

#13 Louisiana State over #8 TENNESSEE giving 3: Bengals want a chance to make up for letting Auburn off the hook in a great defensive battle a few weeks back. Edge on D definitely goes to LSU (allowing 8.3 ppg, second behind only the Buckeyes) as opposed to the Vols (allowing decent, but not great 19.1 ppg). Vols QB Ainge nursing a bad ankle...Tigers 24 Tennessee 13

#9 Southern Cal over STANFORD giving 29: This pick is worthy of "lock" status. After last week’s outright defeat at Oregon State, do ya really think Troy won’t be motivated to absolutely decimate a Stanford team that quit weeks ago??!! It was USC 51-21 last year. Cardinal is 1-7 ATS...Trojans 48 Stanford 9

#10 CAL over Ucla giving 17: Bears have already avenged two of its four losses from ‘05, whacking the Ducks by three touchdowns and holding a solid Wazzou offense to a FG at Pullman. Cal puts away the Bruins big then zeroes in on the remaining offender, USC...Bears 31 Bruins 7

North Carolina over #11 NOTRE DAME taking 28: Leprechauns are 1-4 against the number in South Bend. Tarheels became the final I-A team to snag a spread win last week and gave Wake Forest fits while doing it... Irish 31 UNC 10

#12 Arkansas over SOUTH CAROLINA giving 3: "LOCK OF DA’ WEEK. At worst, this is a push. Gamecocks had their one chance to pull a major upset...and failed. Hogs’ 5th-ranked rushing offense should grind out the adequate victory. More visor-throwin’ for the Ol’ Ball Coach...Pigs 21 SC 10

#15 Rutgers: IDLE (next vs. Louisville 11/9)

#16 Boston College over #22 WAKE FOREST giving 4: BC has been in five games decided by a touchdown or les, including three by five points or fewer. Eagles have beaten better teams than Wake has en route to their identical 7-1 SU records. Deacons were +3 in turnovers and still failed to score on North Carolina over the final 12 minutes of a tight ball game. BC is #11 in the nation vs. the run, Wake’s first choice on offense...BC 24 Wake 17

#17 WISCONSIN over Penn State giving 6 1/2: Oh the shame! Both sides own wins against the same four lower-tier conference squads and both lost to Michigan. State’s miscues cost ‘em against Wolverines and Buckeyes. Badgers boast the better margin of victory over the common foes. Vindy’s heart says "Lions". Vindy’s head says "Wake up and smell the Joe... Paterno!"...Wisky 20 PSU 10

#18 Oklahoma over #21 TEXAS A&M giving 3: Sooners can tie the Aggies for lead in the Big 12 South with the victory. Again, we point out quality-of-opponent discrepancies between A&M’s wins and Oklahoma’s wins. Sooners are recovering nicely since defeat by Texas...OK 27 A&M 20

Maryland over #19 CLEMSON taking 16: Terps carry three-game straight-up win-streak (2-1 ATS) into Death Valley, where the Tigers routinely crush the opposition. U.S. and Russian scientists recently discovered the heaviest known element. They’re calling it... Friedgenium?...Clemson 28 Box Turtles 14

NC STATE over #20 Georgia Tech taking 6: Wolfpack needs to take three of its final four to be post-season eligible. Bees are already there and are jockeying for position now. State’s already pulled off a couple big upsets in Raleigh...Wreck 17 NCSU 14

#23 Virginia Tech over MIAMI giving 2: For that special Hurricanes fan on your Christmas list..."Shackle Me, Elmo". Just squeeze his hand and he’s swings his helmet while talking smack about Florida International!...Hokies 17 ‘Canes 13

Washington over #24 OREGON taking 13 ½: Back-to-back OT losses might just cause Huskies to close up shop. Ducks’ last visit from an Apple State team was a pleasant one, ending in 34-23 loss to the Cougars. Mallards are #5 in total offense, but don’t make the top 10 in rushing or passing, suggesting solid balance... Decoys 35 Dogs 24

#25 WASHINGTON STATE over Arizona giving 16 ½: Can Wildcats’ D cover up for its anemic partners on offense and keep AZ close enough to cover on the road. Arizona’s best output was 28 points against mighty Stephen F. Austin...WSU 27 UA 7


Soon to hit the holiday shelves..."Tackle Me, Elmo"- comes with pads and helmet. Hit him outta’ bounds, hit him late, drive him into the turf, spear him helmet-to-helmet...and not get flagged!

The BBC revealed last week the name of the offspring of Britney Spears and Kevin Federline to be Jayden James Federline. Damn...Vin was hopin’ for "Nittany Spears"!

Charles Barkley is running for governor of his home state, Alabama, under the slogan, "Everyone’s chicken in my pot." Funny... Ricky Williams, born in San Diego, is running for governor of California...on the platform of "A little pot with every chicken!"

Virtually winless on NFL bets this season, Vindy has converted to the Church of Latter Day New Orleans Saints!

In August, the 70-year-old father of Republican Senator Norm Coleman was arrested in Minnesota for having sex with a 38-year-old woman in a public place. Jay Leno called dad a Democrat. Vindy just calls him...a Viking!

Danny "Little Tark" Tarkanian, son of former Rebels coach Jerry, is running for State Secretary of State in Nevada (insert your own vote-shaving scandal joke here).

Fidel Castro appeared on CSPN (The Communist World Leader in Sports!) this week to announce he’s off the DL and has returned to the practice field, participating in no-contact drills and noting he will continue to provide input on government matters from the sidelines!

"Locked in a Box?": The Middies went down with the ship to sink the lock tally to 5-4 off the coast of Baltimore, where it’ll make a lovely artificial reef!

Shoppe Talk: Irish look ready to accept "Grill-Master Supreme" honors this post-season at 1-7. The Steers return at 2-6. The Sooners are OK after the forecast win this past weekend.

Vindy’s Week 10 Best Bets: Last Week: 3-2 Season: 21-21-1 (.500)
Kansas (PK) over IOWA STATE, TEMPLE +18 1/2 over Central Michigan, Hawaii -28 over UTAH STATE, WESTERN MICHIGAN -10 ½ over Miami-Ohio, East Carolina -6 over CENTRAL FLORIDA