Thursday, October 27, 2011

Vindy's Picks Week 9-2011


COLUMBUS, Ohio (CNN)…As protesters across the country confronted police, raging against government bailouts and tax breaks that helped only the nation’s elite few, the Vegas Vindicator, too, had had enough. The renowned college football prophet, frustrated with mounting forecast losses, especially courtesy of the Buckeyes, rallied protesters from their original location in a vacant lot across from UNLV’s Thomas & Mack Center (all 20 of ‘em) and travelled to the Ohio State campus in a movement dubbed by the Weber Kid as “Occupy Da’ ‘Shoe”! Expressing disappointment with ongoing scandals at the school and displeasure with the inconsistent play of the football team, currently at 3-2 against the spread, Vindicator, who is suffering from a current 4-13-1 forecast record picking OSU games, confused the nationwide slogan with an old adage and ended up waving a sign reading, “We are the whole 99 yards!”

Halloween looms (“Loomis”? [Fans of the movie series will get that reference!]), but with the picks at 30 games below .500 (5-13 last week, 57-87-1, .396 on the season) and sinkin’ like stock in Netflix, Jason, Freddy, Michael and Jigsaw got nuthin’ on…

(“Oh, yes…there will be blood”)

#18 HOUSTON over Rice giving 27:
“Wish I Had It Back” written all over this, but Owls, who’ve (“Hooooo’ve?”) covered five of last six vs. cross-town rival Coogs (including outright wins in 2008 and 2010), lost by 25 at Baylor and 25 at Texas earlier this season. Rice’s last trip to Robertson Stadium however resulted in a 73-14 pounding. Cougars are holding I-A opponents to about 22 ppg, and Rice lights the board for mid-twenties on average, meaning UH will need to probably break into the fifties to cover. Houston has ventured past the half-century mark in three of its last four matches and just missed on the other one. Barnyard Birds have yielded 50 just once (at Baylor) and have gone “under” the total (mid-to-high fifties) in 5 of 7 games, but haven’t faced this prolific an offense. If now-NCAA total offense record-holder Case Keenum stays healthy, we see little reason why Houston won’t cover this. Cougars blasted Marshall 63-28 for Homecoming and our only concern, despite a 3-0 home ATS record so far and a lot of seniors at the skill positions, is a slow start here on the short week after expending that kind of energy, especially with a defense prone to giving up big points to lower conference opponents…Houston 54Rice 26

SAT. OCT. 29

#1 LSU: IDLE (next @ Alabama)

#2 Alabama: IDLE (next vs. LSU)

#3 OKLAHOMA STATE over Baylor giving 14: OKSU 48 Bares 27

#4 Stanford over #20 USC giving 7 ½: Men of Troy getting little press despite 6-1 straight-up record (4-3 ATS). Cardinal, however, despite nothing remarkable about its slate either (though layin’ 65 on then-ranked Huskies got a few looks), has been unstoppable and a weekly liability to the ‘books. The difference between the two clubs is the average margin-of-victory. USC’s win over the Frightenin’ Irish lends some credibility, but Trojans are getting points at home for only the second time in two seasons (and second time since the beginning of 2002)…Redbirds 37 Trojans 20

#5 Boise State: IDLE (next @ UNLV)

#6 Clemson over GEORGIA TECH giving 3 ½: LOCK OF DA’ WEEK. At 7-0 against the line, Tigers are also sportsbook-bane and given that the secret is out…Tevon Washington is the weakest link for the ‘Jackets, make him throw the ball…the short spread is a bit curious. Tech turned it over six times in the past two weeks, both SU losses, including three INT by Washington. Bees have revenge angle for last year’s 27-13 defeat and Tigers traditionally are fitty-fitty propositions on the road, but Clemson has beaten three Top 25 foes, two of ‘em away. Before 2010, the previous two years were decided by 3 and 4. Did Tech burn the game film that would’ve gone to Clemson or just swap it out with the “Bee Movie”???... Tigers 31 GT 23

Washington State over #7 OREGON taking 35: Oregon cornerback Cliff Harris will grab some pine… again…for involvement in a traffic incident… AGAIN! He was caught recently driving with a suspended license and no insurance (editor’s note: that and a tat at a discount gets him a starting position with the Buckeyes this week. We’re just sayin’….) after being busted in June doin’ 118 mph with an expired license to-boot! The Mallards defender told local gendarmes he was merely trying to improve his time in the forty! QB Darron Thomas was reportedly asleep in the passenger side. Okay, Vindicator’s a light sleeper, but if we’re ridin’ shotgun in a vehicle exceedin’ the century mark, 1) we ain’t grabbin’ a power nap! and 2) there damn well better be an emergency crew wherever the car stops, with the jaws-of-life to pry Vindy’s fingers outta’ the visor and his toes outta’ the CD player/tape deck and glove-box, respectively!...Ducks 61 Wazzou 29

#8 Arkansas over VANDERBILT giving 10: Much respect to the ‘Dores and their 4-1 SU record at home under first year coach Franklin, but we think the off-week hampered Hogs on both sides of the ball in first half at Old Missed, who jumped out 17-0 before Pigs reeled-off 29 unanswered points. Arkansas shows a 14-4 TD-to-INT ratio, while Vandy’s D is very-respectable 21st nationally with 10-to-15 TD allowed-to-INT ratio (including 3 returned for scores). Admirals defend the run reasonably well too, at about 133 ypg and just 5 rushing scores-against. More of a vote for Arkansas’ offense than against Vanderbilt in general (though Commodores show total of 3 points against the two previous ranked teams they’ve played)…Razorbacks 34 Vandy 17

#9 Michigan State over #13 NEBRASKA taking 4: UPSET PICK OF DA’ WEEK #1. Yeah, Big Dread walloped lame-duck Minnesota (as we predicted) and yeah, Sparty got some divine intervention to edge Wisconsin with the fortunate carom that turned into a 44-yard score as the clock ran out, but we’re more inspired to back State, who’s now 3-0 SU/ATS in the conference against three teams expected to contend than to support Nebraska squad still feeling its way around the new digs a bit and whose vaunted ground game goes toe-to-toe with nation’s #8 team vs. the rush (less than 89 ypg allowed). State’s 5-1 ATS overall, while Huskers are 0-3 ATS in Lincoln (though all three were double-digit lines)…MSU 24 Cornholio 23

#10 KANSAS STATE over #11 Oklahoma taking 13 ½: Spooners 34 KSU 28

OHIO STATE over #12 Wisconsin taking 7: In the preseason, this had the earmarks of maybe being for all the conference marbles, if not more. But the game has since lost some luster. The line speaks volumes to perhaps an over-rated Wisconsin squad and a Buckeyes team, which, while still slogging a bit on offense, has the D to win this outright in light of 2-1 SU record over last three games (and Nebraska was fortunate to rally). Badgers won by three touchdowns last year. Bucks had the extra week to strategize while Wisky was failing to execute in the shadow of its own goalposts enough to lose to Michigan State, yielding a safety and a blocked punt kicking from the EZ. State’s only bad loss came at Miami…Wisky 24 OSU 19

TENNESSEE over #14 South Carolina taking 3 ½: UPSET PICK OF DA’ WEEK #2. And if not, Gamehens still have three wins over Georgia, Navy and Mississippi State by total of 8 points...Vols 19 Poultry 16

DUKE over #15 Virginia Tech taking 15: Hokies 24 Blue Devils 13

#16 TEXAS A&M over Missouri giving 11: A&M 34 Mizzou 20

#17 MICHIGAN over Purdue giving 13 ½: After being a non-factor in the early part of the year, Purdue lost almost all statistical categories but kept Illinois off the board until mid-4th quarter to grab its second SU win and third straight cover in last three weeks. None of the teams in question however had the kind of offense that Michigan possesses and with the extra week to stew about loss to “Little Brother”, we think Big Blue, 5-2 against the number, will crank it up to the delight of the Homecoming crowd in Ann Arbor. As an added bonus, the Wolverine band will strike up “Hail to the Victor Frankensteins”…Big Blew 38 Boilermakers 19

#19 TEXAS TECH (GASP!) over Iowa State giving 15: Red Raiders 47 Dust Devils 27

Illinois over #21 PENN STATE taking 4 ½: Lions own Big Tent-Peg’s longest ongoing SU dubya run at six (And counting? We thank fellow-prophet David Whitney for that tidbit. Check out his picks at!). The alma mater, sitting atop the Leaders Division, also leans 6-1 to the “under”. This summer, JoePa conceded he violated an NCAA rule when, while ambling across campus, he stopped to observe a voluntary work-out then reported back to assistant coaches that a specific player “looked good”. Upon further review, Paterno couldn’t remember the name of the player-in-question and simply referred to him as “that kid in the blue jersey”…and why Coach was strolling thru the grounds at Rice in Houston at the time is still unknown! The feisty icon can become the winningest D-1 coach with a victory....PSU 17 Illinois 13

#22 Georgia over Florida giving 3 (@ Jacksonville, FL) : Joja’ 20 Gators 16

Colorado over #23 ARIZONA STATE taking 30 ½: Pitchforks 37 Bison 10

#24 Cincinnati: IDLE (next @ Pittsburgh)

RUTGERS over #25 West Virginia taking 7: Rutgers yielded rights to name its stadium to NJ-based High Point Solutions, Inc. of Sparta, which assists other Fortune 500 businesses with IT needs. They coulda’ just called it Sparta Stadium, but now its High Point Solutions Stadium. Maybe the team moniker should be Gladiators and they should hire Russell Crowe as the mascot! WVU has been an enigma from week-to-week at 3-3 ATS and just 2-6 last 8 laying points away from Morgantown. We’ve been on the Knights much of the year. We’ll stay there this week too…Mounted Ears 23 Jerseylicious! 20


BTW, Vindicator told reporters he planned to use Twitter, Facebook and other social-networking media to implore supporters to take up the cause on his behalf at Lane Stadium in Blacksburg, Virginia, where his picks have flopped to 0-7 at the hands of the Virginia Tech Hokies!

Meanwhile, back in NYC, groups such as PETA, The Humane Society, World Wildlife Federation and ASPCA are gathering to demonstrate against the use of squid and related species as restaurant fare in an effort publicized as “Octopi Wall Street”!

During Harris’ stop, the trooper smelled marijuana. The players said they didn’t smoke it. Was Snoop Dogg in the trunk or what???!!!

Running all Halloween weekend on SyFy, a marathon about haunted running games called… “Tailbacks from the Darkside”.

For the “Rocky Horror” fans out there….Vindy’s abode is really just “some kind of hunting lodge for rich weirdos”.

On the big screen...Children of the Corn meets famously-bad ballplayer, Bob Uecker in “He Who Walks Behind the Front Rowwwwww”

A proposed merger of the Mountain West, Big Least and Conference USA?! Welcome to the “U.S. Mountain East Conference”? Or maybe the “Trans-America Conference” . Throw in University of Puerto Rico and University of Manitoba and call it the Big Continent! Or just get it over with by adding Cape Horn State and making it the “Magellan Conference”!!!

Unable to fork over the moolah to cover the sizable fine he incurred for previous drug and money-laundering charges, Edward Rife, the tattoo parlor owner at the center of Ohio State’s demise, now gets to spend some time in the pokey. We’re thinkin’ he could do enough body-art on the inside to raise the $10K he needs…in cigarettes!

In the “Things that make ya go ‘WTH?????!!!!’” category this week, we question the need for the Saints 62-7 annihilation of the Colts. Ain’t no style-points required in the BCS-less NFL.

The UNLV School of Medicine boasts a plastic surgeon named Dr. Zamboni! Apparently, face-offs aren’t a problem!!!!

While there are still a few innings left in the World Series, we’re boning-up on our Henry Wadsworth poetry because we heard… “Chicks dig the Longfellow!”

Takin’ a few liberties with a “Pet Sematary” quote from Fred Gwynne (previously of Herman Munster fame), we say, “Sometahms..deadball fouls ah bettah.”

“Locked in a Box?”: Illini fell outright to Purdue, leaving our lock record at 3-5 (.375)

Shoppe Talk: Hokies fall to 0-7 (.000) with Ohio State on this week’s docket again, still at 0-5 (.000). Oklahoma State continues to torment us at 1-6 (.142). Joining the fray, the Sooooeeeey Pig-Pig-Pigs of Arkansas at 1-5 (.167)

Vindy’s Week 9 Best Bets: Last Week: 1-3-1 Season: 19-20-1 (.487)
Alabama-Birmingham +6 over MARSHALL, Wake Forest +7 over NORTH CAROLINA, MARYLAND -7 over Boston College, Memphis +28 ½ over CENTRAL FLORIDA, Western Kentucky +6 over UL-MONROE

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Vindy's Picks Week 9 Thursday Nighter

#18 HOUSTON over Rice giving 27:
“Wish I Had It Back” written all over this, but Owls, who’ve (“Hooooo’ve?”) covered five of last six vs. cross-town rival Coogs (including outright wins in 2008 and 2010), lost by 25 at Baylor and 25 at Texas earlier this season. Rice’s last trip to Robertson Stadium, however, resulted in a 73-14 pounding. Cougars are holding I-A opponents to about 22 ppg, and Rice lights the board for mid-twenties on average, meaning UH will need to probably break into the fifties to cover. Houston has ventured past the half-century mark in three of its last four matches and just missed on the other one. Barnyard Birds have yielded 50 just once (at Baylor) and have gone “under” the total (mid-to-high fifties) in 5 of 7 games, but haven’t faced this prolific an offense. If now-NCAA total offense record-holder Case Keenum stays healthy, we see little reason why Houston won’t cover this. Cougars blasted Marshall 63-28 for Homecoming and our only concern, despite a 3-0 home ATS record so far and a lot of seniors at the skill positions, is a slow start here on the short week after expending that kind of energy, especially with a defense prone to giving up big points to lower conference opponents…Houston 54 Rice 26

We'll back Thursday night with the rest of the forecast in its entirety. Don't touch that dial!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Vindy's Picks Week 8-2011


NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana (UPI)…Bowl officials are scrambling to print and distribute tickets as well as ensure all necessary preparations are made for this Friday’s BCS National Championship game between #1 LSU and #2 Alabama in light of Harold Camping’s revised prediction of October 21st for the Rapture. The Oakland-based man-of-the-cloth missed the mark on his original call last May. Expecting the disappearance of the faithful and subsequent consumption of those left behind by fire and earthquakes, the BCS had no choice but to schedule and play its title match earlier than the usual January timeframe. The Tide and Tigers, originally slated to meet in two weeks, were benefactors of the season’s first (and presumably only) BCS poll, published just a few days ago, and will square-off in what will effectively decide the SEC West and the conference title in addition to the national crown. Rule changes were quickly approved and enacted for the game, including protection against penalties for “too many dead-men on the field” should zombies rise up from under the hashmarks while the game is in progress.

It’s seasons like this one (6-11 last week, 52-74-1, .413 year –to-date) that make us wonder why we bother. Not sure what the Rapture holds for Vindy himself, but certain to end up as a burning hulk is…

THE WEBER KID’S 2011 WEEK 8 FORECAST(More flammable than the giant lint-balls in those Farmers Insurance commercials)

FRI. OCT. 21
#11 West Virginia over SYRACUSE giving 13 ½: West Virginia 31 L’Orange 14

SAT. OCT. 22
#19 Auburn over #1 LSU taking 22 ½:
Bengals moving the ball better under Jarrett Lee and swept a trio of SEC East wannabes. They now target the War Eagles, to whom they lost 24-17 in 2010. We figure LSU won’t turn it over five times like the Gators did, but we like defensive-minded Auburn to stay within the generous number. Owning the top spot in the BCS Poll and having plenty of schedule strength, State won’t need style-points, they’ll just need to stay healthy for showdown with the Tide in a few weeks…LSU 24 Auburn 13

#2 ALABAMA over Tennessee giving 29: Tide 38 Vols 6

Texas Tech over #3 OKLAHOMA taking 28 ½: Oklahoma 52 Tech 27

#4 Wisconsin over #15 MICHIGAN STATE giving 8: Badgers weren’t even at full-strength on offense while pummeling Indiana. Spartans neutralized Denard Robinson for Michigan, which has little behind him, but Russell Wilson and Montee Ball will keep the Spartans guessing on defense all day. Wisky has few, if any, opportunities after this one to beat down a quality opponent for the computer rankings, so they’ll need to make this one count. State’s gone 19-7 SU in last 26 Big Ten games, but Badgers’ smallest margin-of-victory this year is 31 points… Wisconsin 27 MSU 10

Air Force over #5 BOISE STATE taking 31: Best guess for “wish I had it back” pick of the week, but we’ll revisit our logic for correct earlier-season selection of Navy plus da’ points over South Carolina…namely, nobody on the Broncos squad has faced the Air Force version of the option. And while the Flight Platoon throws the ball more than Army or Navy (which ain’t sayin’ much), they would be best off keeping the ball on the ground to grind it out and keep Kellen Moore near the Gatorade bucket as much as possible. Our concerns include the minus-six turnover ratio and USAF defense that’s given up 100 points the past two weeks. Boise has yielded total of 87 all season. We’re hopin’ the Pilots’ bye last week allowed them to regroup…Boise 44 Paper Airplanes 17

MISSOURI over #6 Oklahoma State taking 6 ½: UPSET ALERT. Given undefeated Cowpokes have just one victory by less than double-digits, we attribute the line to State’s ongoing defensive woes (though Texas went scoreless for final 11-plus minutes last week despite a nearly 2-1 ratio in TOP overall) and Mizzou’s defensive prowess. Tigers lost at Oklahoma by 10, have covered two of the three Big Twelve games on the season and probably should’ve beaten K-State. Missouri has spread wins in just three of last dozen vs. ranked teams. OKSU is nifty 11-0 as road chalk off consecutive wins, but won’t face a first-time starter at quarterback in this one… Cowboys 27 Mizzou 24

#22 Washington over #7 STANFORD taking 20 ½: Sled Dogs have quietly made their way into the rankings, obscured by accomplishments of the Cardinal and the Ducks. UDUB posting over 400 yards total offense per game and have covered 10 straight, going back to last season. Stanford, 6-0 ATS, has shown tendency to sleepwalk thru the first half (Colorado game notwithstanding) before perking up in the final 30 minutes. Huskies have lotsa’ depth and revenge for last season’s 41-0 embarrassment. Stanford silenced Wazzou’s potent attack. Only Arizona got fewer points of handicap than UDUB… Redbirds 39 Washington 24

#8 CLEMSON over North Carolina giving 10 ½: Tigers 24 Tarheels 10

COLORADO over #9 Oregon taking 32: Even minus LaMichael James, Mallards still averaged better than 7 yards per carry and just missed covering vs. ASU. Both James and starting QB Thomas could be out, but Bison are injury-depleted too. Buffs, who were not given a bye in their inaugural 12-PAC year, are 2-5 ATS, with all defeats in regulation leading to the spread losses. We’re wondering if altitude will be an issue. During the off-season, the Ducks apparently paid for old recruiting information. Cool! They can feed the data by punch-card into their Wang computers! We heard coaches are looking into some kid named Red Grange and that they’re replacing the digital scoreboard in Autzen Stadium with an abacus!...Quack Attack 44 Colorado 17

#10 Arkansas over MISSISSIPPI giving 16 ½: Arkansas 34 Old Mist 13

KANSAS over #12 Kansas State taking 11 ½: KSU 24 Jayhawks 17

#13 Nebraska over MINNESOTA giving 24 ½: We considered the Gerbils and the points for a fleeting moment, but after opening its debut season in the new conference 0-2 against the line and almost 0-2 straight-up, Big Dread needs a statement game to show some oomph and that it can be a contender in the Big Tenuous Conference. O-fers have seemingly waved the white flag, getting ripped 45-17 by less-than-impressive Purdue team before last week’s bye. Corncobs were idle last week too and are a solid bet with rest. Minny, by contrast, is not…Huskers 38 Fish-in-a-Barrel 7

#14 South Carolina: IDLE (next @ Tennessee)

#16 VIRGINIA TECH over Boston College giving 21: Like it matters which side we take here??!! Beagles are 0-5 ATS despite being somewhat competitive in their games and the linesmakers will catch up eventually, but the offense continues to stumble, averaging 19.5 ppg, factoring in 45 points in lone SU win against I-AA UMass, and just 14+ ppg without them. BC’s scoring problems date back to early last year and the stellar defense that allowed them to win their final five tilts in 2010 is no longer present as a safety net…VT 31 BC 6

#17 Texas A&M over IOWA STATE giving 20 ½: Aggies 45 ‘Clones 20

#18 Michigan: IDLE (next vs. Purdue)

#20 Georgia Tech over MIAMI taking 2 ½: Tech 23 Miami 20

Marshall over #21 HOUSTON taking 22: Coogs are undefeated in six games behind country’s best air game, but just 3-2 ATS due to a traditionally-shaky defense. Most recent meeting resulted in a 37-23 upset win by Marshall in 2007. Herd has at least shown up to play, winning three games by six or less and losing respectably to a pair of Top 25 squads (West Virginia and Virginia Tech). The offense has new faces, but nine returning starters on the stop-squad have kept Marshall in all but one game to-date and Herd has a 5-2 spread record, with three road covers. Houston slipped past Weeziana Tech and UTEP (both on the road though)…Houston 41 Marshall 24

#23 Illinois over PURDUE giving 4 ½: LOCK OF DA’ WEEK. Money’s been coming in on Purdue, but seriously….what have the Boilermakers done to warrant this small of a line? They bombed a Minnesota team that has seemingly given up (as we noted above), but who hasn’t? They stayed within 5 points of the Nitwit Lions. Again we ask…who hasn’t??!! The Choo-Choos opened the season by edging Sun Belt’s Middle Tennessee, then lost at Rice. Fifth home game in seven outings for Purdue, which got smacked in Champaign last season 44-10. Granted, three of the Illini victories have been by a FG and UI just 4-10 SU in last 14 away games, but…Illini 20 Purdue 10

#24 Arizona State: IDLE (next vs. Colorado)

#25 Georgia: IDLE (next vs. Florida)


If a player committing a penalty suddenly sheds his Earthly coil and goes to the Rapture, the flag will be picked up and time put back on the clock. Maybe Deborah Harry can play the halftime show! If the game is called because of the cataclysmic event, it’s considered “no action” and any remaining bettors will be refunded their wagers!

We’re no New Testament aficionado, but apparently Matthew 24:15-22 reads, “…Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes.” Nice! We call dibs on all the game-worn jerseys that will be strewn across the gridiron after the fact!

If da’ picks go up in a blazing inferno, maybe they’ll be rescued by OJ Simpson (Oh wait…that was “Towering Inferno”!). If the flame-retardant glove don’t fit…!

On the boob tube this season…the ongoing effects of a computer malfunction that inadvertently leads to an invite for New Mexico to the Fiesta Bowl, while Oklahoma gets relegated to the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl in ABC’s “Switched at BCS Berth”.

“Like a good neighhhhhhhbor….State Farm is therewith a winning ten-team parlay!”

The win over UNLV two weeks ago means it’s been 7 straight years that UNR has had the Fremont Cannon, which is now legally-recognized in several states as Reno’s common-law spouse! And in the event of a divorce or dissolution of the relationship, the replica pre-Civil War relic cannon receives half the Wolfpack team…and supervised visitation rights with the remaining players every other weekend…at the Moonlight Bunny Ranch! In fact, based on the 37-0 final score, apparently the Rebels’ only method of traversing the field was to be shot out of said-weapon.

This week, Jim Tressel will get to act in his official capacity as the Colts’ “gameday consultant”, making decisions about video-replay challenges, after completing his suspension by the NFL. To ensure he didn’t practice with the team, league officials took away his Blockbuster card, his access to NetFlix and issued a restraining order preventing him from being within 500-feet of a Red Box!

Tuesday’s GOP debate between Mitt Romney and Rick Perry got a little heated. Apparently, Perry shook Romney’s hand a bit aggressively after the event ended, then jumped off stage, celebrating the victory with his constituents, annoying his opponent, who chased down the Texas governor and the two had to be quickly separated by supporters from both sides!

BTW, sources close to Jim Schwartz said the Lions coach was actually upset because Coach Harbaugh “punked him with a joy-buzzer!”

In April, a robot with one arm and a trio of wheels, created by folks at Penn, threw out the first pitch at a Phillies-Brewers game. The ‘bot later returned to the mound to strike out the side in the 9th inning and preserve the win for the home team!

Gridiron fans rejoice! It’s that time of the season in which there will be at least one pro or college football game played every day from Thursday, October 20 thru November 12! If yer scoring at home, that’s 33 straight days!

How Hilary Duff really told hubby and NHL star Mike Comrie recently that she’s pregnant: 1) “Honey…my doctor says you ‘lit the lamp’.” 2) “Yo Mike…ya parked one between the pipes!” 3) “Dear…there’s a ‘biscuit in the basket’.” 4) She peed on his hockey stick and the blade turned blue!

“Locked in a Box?”: !*!@%$!!! Wolverines got whacked again by the Spartans to post our third straight “lock” miss and lower the tally to 3-4 (.428)
Shoppe Talk: Vindicator is now a collective 0-fer-11 picking games for Virginia Tech (0-6, .000) and Ohio State (0-5, .000). Not far behind in the misery are the Cowboys of Okie State (1-5, .167).

Vindy’s Week 8 Best Bets: Last Week: 1-4 Season: 18-17 (.514)
UAB +16 over Central Florida (Thurs), Rutgers +2 over LOUISVILLE (Fri), Temple -13 over BOWLING GREEN, Wake Forest -3 over DUKE, NORTHWESTERN +4 over Penn State (Oh the shame!)

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Vindy's Picks Week 7-2011


WAYNE, New Jersey (AP)…Forget this year’s hottest “gotta-have-it” kiddie items, such as Monster High dolls. Retailers such as the local Toys-R-Us conglomerate, KB and FAO Schwarz recently got an unexpected windfall recently-revisited “cadence rule”. Violators on defense get penalized for mimicking offensive cadences in order to create confusion, but teams are implementing counter-measures, just in case. The strategy involves disguising the signal-calling on each offensive possession to resemble voices by everyone from John Wayne to Beavis and Butthead to Elvis to keep defenders guessing. It will likely take time to get used to the equipment as teams report problems with uncontrollable laughter by linemen, leading to false-starts during practice. Said one anonymous QB employing sound-effects of a well-known Star Wars villain, “the hardest part of the whole ‘Darth Vader’ thing is that the mask interferes with downfield vision. And it ain’t easy handlin’ snaps cleanly while brandishing a light-saber!”

It was a betting-public’s fantasy and a sportsbook’s nightmare in Week 6 as the chalk went wild, covering 15 of the 21 of the games involving ranked teams. Meanwhile, the length of Vindy’s success from Week 6 was shorter than a Venus Williams skirt! In light of our 7-13 Week Six debacle (46-63-1, 422), we’ve been practicing a silent snap count all week for use on our own homefield so the bookies can’t copy the oral tendencies and use them to disrupt…

(Brought to you by Old Spice [trying to smell better than Vindy himself!])

SAT. OCT. 15
#1 Louisiana State over TENNESSEE giving 15 ½:
Fans may remember the flag on the Vols for too many men that lost ‘em the game after Tennessee had successfully managed a goal-line stand. UT is young on offense and will be without QB Tyler Bray. We saw what LSU did to Florida’s back-up and Les Miles continues to pull out the trick-plays, even if his Aussie punter cost the Bengals four points vs. the Gators. Alternating 4th Down (Under) kicking duties this week for State…Crocodile Dundee and Hugh Jackman! No worries, Mate!...LSU 31 Rocky Top 14

#2 Alabama over MISSISSIPPI giving 25: Tide 31 Ole Missed 3

#3 Oklahoma over KANSAS giving 35: Oklahoma 54 Jaywalks 13

Indiana over #4 WISCONSIN taking 39 ½: We agonized over this pick. It’s Homecoming in Madison and the Varmints are one of the five teams from the Big Tenement Conference among the top eight nationally in scoring- defense. They were off last week and will visit currently-ranked Michigan State next. The Hosers lost by 3 in ’09, while losing by 35, 31 and 35 in the three years prior, but will remember the ungodly 83 that Wisky hung on ‘em last season. We know about penalties for excessive celebration. Can ya be flagged for excessive scoring???!!!... Badgers 54 Indiana 17

#5 Boise State over COLORADO STATE giving 32: Broncos 45 CSU 9

#22 TEXAS over #6 Oklahoma State taking 7 ½: OKSU 33 Steers 27

WASHINGTON STATE over #7 Stanford taking 21: Stanford 44 Wazzou 27

MARYLAND over #8 Clemson taking 7 ½: Clemson starting QB Tajh Boyd was hurt in win against Boston College. Including last season’s 31-7 win by the Tigers, the last six years have seen the tilts split 3-3 SU/ATS, and 4 of the 6 were decided by 4 points or less. Terps are off tough “L” to Joja’ Tech, but held their own on the ground, running for 6 yards per tote. Tigers are perfect 5-0 against the line, with four “overs”…Clemson 24 Box Turtles 21

#18 Arizona State over #9 OREGON taking 16: Another one we waffled on. Ducks struggled early off the bye and LaMichael James, obviously a key to the Mallards’ potent ground attack, was lost to injury in the Cal game, while Sun Devils benefitted from five Utah miscues. Mallards lost outright and ATS to only ranked team they’ve faced thus far. Oregon is decent, but not invincible 11-7 ATS at home, but last game in Autzen that was this close was late November of 2009 vs. Oregon State. Sun Devils are 5-2-1 in last 8 away games. If the Ducks are going to be vulnerable, now is the time. Gotta’ wonder if recruits, when they get a glimpse of all the uniform designs in Eugene, think they’ve signed up to play football or just jockey a steed in the Kentucky Derby!!!...Drakes 30 ASU 20

#10 Arkansas: IDLE (next @ Mississippi)

#11 Michigan over #23 Michigan State taking 3: LOCK OF DA’ WEEK. This line is either 1) an overreaction to Denard Robinson’s sloppiness that put Michigan behind big vs. Northwestern or 2) based on recent history that’s seen State as the victor three straight years in this series. Those three wins were while the Wolverines were under RichRod not Brady Hoke and Sparty’s best win this year was 10-7 over punchless Ohio State…Big Blue 38 Little Brother 27

#12 Georgia Tech over VIRGINIA giving 7 ½: Second choice for lock. Cavs have 10 starters back on defense and have played like it, especially against the run, allowing just 116 ypg, but are 0-4 against the line after dodging Idaho 21-20. Virginia’s only other wins were by 3 over Indy and a trouncing of I-AA William & Mary. (And not to give the appearance of favoritism, the Cavs have scheduled William and Kate for the 2013 opener!). ‘Jackets can be had on defense, taking an 18-point lead into the final period then hanging on against Maryland, but…Bees 34 Virginia 17

#13 West Virginia: IDLE (next @ Syracuse 10/21)

#14 Nebraska: IDLE (next @ Minnesota)

#15 South Carolina over MISSISSIPPI STATE giving 3: Gamehens turned three of Kentucky’s six-pack of turnovers into 17 points on the way to routing the Wildcats, but SC may have found itself a quarterback in Connor Shaw. Mississippi State has logged five straight spread losses, with defeats by 7 at Auburn, 14 at Joja’ and 13 to LSU, while posting three wins over nobody special (three non-BCS squads). Poultry hits the road for three consecutive weeks after a nice home-stand…Original Recipe 23 MSU 14

#16 ILLINOIS over Ohio State giving 4: Illini 20 OSU 13

#17 Kansas State over TEXAS TECH (GASP!) taking 3: Can we get a witness???!!! Vindy finally reeled in another forecast win with the Red Raiders (see our Black Shirt segment below!). ‘Cats were efficient in win over Mizzou, grabbing 24 points on just 286 total yards offense and one TO by the Tigers. Tech isn’t playing any defense. Even if ‘Cats falter, this has been nice preview of 2012 for K-State, who’s being led by a redshirt Freshman and a sophomore in the backfield, but unlike the linesmakers, we’ll bite on the Houdini act and call it…KSU 31 Guns Up 27

WAKE FOREST over #19 Virginia Tech taking 7: While not completely discounting the five turnovers and 13 yellow hankies by the Seminoles (and Tech won’t field a freshman or rusty starter at QB), we still note the Deacons now have more SU wins to-date (4) than all of last year (3) and the only defeat came in extra frames at Syracuse to open the season. Just can’t trust the Hokies, who let a two-touchdown advantage dissolve as Miami racked up over 500 yards offense in narrow loss. We’re hesitant to call the second-straight upset for The Forest (3-1 ATS), but we wouldn’t be shocked…VT 21 Wake 19

#20 Baylor over #21 TEXAS A&M taking 9 ½: UPSET PICK OF DA’ WEEK. Aggies D does ‘em in again… Bears 34 A&M 31

#24 AUBURN over Florida taking 2: Tigers 19 Florida 17

#25 Houston: IDLE (next vs. Marshall)


Bummer! Vindy was all set to make some serious bank selling audio of Justin Bieber barking signals to upcoming opponents of Tom Brady and the Patriots!

It’s only a matter of time before defensive coordinators start buying the voice equipment for their folks and the chess-matches begin, forcing teams to burn time-outs to keep up! The skill might even be added to the NFL Combine for defensive linemen and linebackers hoping to hear their names called on Draft Day. Four-two speed? Check. Hits like a brick house? Check. Vocal range to impersonate both Michael Clarke Duncan and Julia Child??!! Keeper!!!!

While on the topic of the NFL rulebook, if a player reaches into the neck of a ball-carrier’s uniform with a handful of a leafy, kale-like vegetable to bring him down, does the player get flagged for an illegal horse-collard greens tackle?

Plaxico Burress was apparently little more than a petulant child during his time in the pokey and was frequently made to “stand in the cornerback”! He also reportedly tutored other inmates in, among other studies, reading. Hmmm…”See the letters on this weapon? They spell ‘safety’, ‘semi-automatic’ and ‘full rock-n-roll’!!!”

Devoid of ranked squads for the first time in 29 seasons, Florida is now da’ Sun Belt State! (Which we suppose is better than the “Where the Sun Don’t Shine” State!).

We celebrate Columbus Day this week. How the hometown of the Buckeyes got its own national holiday and why its warranted stoppage of snail-mail delivery for a day is beyond us, but so be it….we’ll get a nice tattoo to commemorate the occasion!

Interestingly, the alma mater got some love this week as the Nitwit Lions now sit at #25 in the USA Coaches Poll.

Twice in July, Major League Baseball umpires issued three-ball walks. You should see their golf scores!

Break-up the Motor City! The Tigers are back in it against the Rangers in the ALCS, the Lions are 5-0 in the NFC North and it’s early in the NHL season, but what the hell…the Red Wings are 2-0 and tied atop the Central Division of the Western Conference!

Raiders QB Terrell Pryor is finally off suspension and is once again eligible to be part of a drive that doesn’t involve a suspended license or a questionable vehicle!

Black Shirt: We award the coveted undergarment to Texas Tech WR Alex Torres for the very late TD catch that salvaged a cover and rare forecast dubya for the Red Raiders (and one of just 7 wins for Vindicator last week).

“Wish I Had That One Back”: We’d sure like a mulligan on the UConn +19 ½ pick after noting how badly the Huskies were playing under their new coach.

“Locked in a Box?”: The Huskheads could not keep a poor Buckeyes team in check enough and drop the record to 3-3 (.500).

Shoppe Talk: We’re hiring some extra taxidermists to work some OT ‘cause it’s getting’ crowded at the Shoppe with Virginia Tech (0-5, .000), the Buckeyes (0-4, .000), West Virginia (1-4, .200), Arkansas (1-4, .200) and the Bengals of LSU (1-3, .250)!

Vindy’s Week 7 Best Bets: Last Week: 3-2 Season: 17-13 (.567)
RUTGERS -4 over Navy, Western Michigan -1 ½ over NORTHERN ILLINOIS, WASHINGTON -14 ½ over Colorado, Northwestern +6 over IOWA, North Texas +9 over WEEZIANA-LAFAYETTE

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Vindy's Picks Week 6-2011


LONDON (BBC)…While the Navy SEALS received most of the acclaim for the demise of Osama Bin Laden, global intelligence sources actually credit phone-hacking by members of the now-defunct British publication News of Da’ World. The information garnered by the 168-year-old publication and namesake of a well-known Queen album of the same title included communications related to the terrorist’s sports-betting and allowed special ops units in the region to infiltrate one of its members, posing as a runner, and keep tabs on Bin Laden’s whereabouts long enough to successfully pull off the raid that killed him. Further translation of his diary pages revealed not only his declarations of Jihad on March Madness and the BCS, but also entries noting failed covers in early May by some NBA and NHL teams, as well as his plan to deliver his “next parlay card to that infidel bookie via a courier wearing a vest full of explosives!”

Somehow, amidst the canine chaos that saw the ‘dogs take 11 of 18 games last week (including six outright dog victories) following four weeks of chalk advantage, our futile forecaster finally finishes a week on the plus-side, at 10-8 (39-50-1, .438), riding a late-Saturday surge by the favorites.

We’re chasin’ stewardesses with a beverage cart on Pan Am this Saturday, while slingin’ soft drinks and copies of

(Supporting Breast Cancer Awareness all month with pink text!)


#9 OREGON over California giving 24: Ducks 51 Cal 20


FRESNO STATE over #5 Boise State taking 20 ½: BSU 34 FSU 20


#17 Florida over #1 LSU taking 13 ½:
As we feared, Gators’ running game was sufficiently-stuffed by ‘Bama. They won’t move on the ground well here either. Tigers just 2-3 SU and 1-3-1 ATS in recent Florida series, but have already beaten (and covered against) three Top 25 teams. Bengals still dismal conference home-faves, but are playing with a lot of confidence knowing the D will bail them outta’ any given mistakes. Florida QB Brantley is out…Bengals 24 Gators 14

Vanderbilt over #2 ALABAMA taking 29: ‘Bama 34 Vandy 7

#11 Texas over #3 Oklahoma taking 10: ‘Horns have won four of the previous six Red River Rivalry games, going 4-1-1 ATS. One of the two losses came in the 2010 version, 28-20. UT looks like a team on a mission following last season’s disaster, but Sooners hold the edge in experience and opposition-faced this year. Freshman David Ash would start his first game vs. Oklahoma if he gets the nod. Sooners obviously didn’t buy into that “conference sandwich” theory we were postulatin’ and hung 62 on the Cardinals of Ball State as one of the few faves that cleaned some clock in Week Five…Sooners 24 Longhorns 19

#4 Wisconsin: IDLE (next vs. Indiana)

Kansas over #6 OKLAHOMA STATE taking 32: OKSU 41 Kansas 16

Colorado over #7 STANFORD taking 29 ½: Cardinal 39 Bison 17

#8 CLEMSON over Boston College giving 21: Boston College is 0-4 ATS and 1-4 outright with only victory coming vs. I-AA Massachusetts. Eagles came into 2011 scoring an average of 16.3 points per game and , omitting the 45 they hung on the Minutemen, have averaged just 14.5 ppg. BC has gone “under” the total four times in as many tries. We wondered if Clemson would take a breather here after knocking off three straight ranked foes, but BC won 16-10 last season and its Homecoming… Tigers 31 BC 0

#15 Auburn over #10 ARKANSAS taking 10: Coach Chizik has done a nice job with very few returning starters, getting wins over two then-ranked clubs and suffering a lone defeat to now-Top Ten Clemson. War Eagle did take advantage of South Carolina offense-in-shambles and combined with the Poultry for eight turnovers. Auburn’s now covered the spread in 7 of last 8 games vs. ranked opponents, but best shot here is to pound the ball. Rush D continues to plague the Pigs, who gave up 381 yards on the ground to A&M. Tigers come in at 34th nationally in rushing offense. What’s in the tank for the Bacon after big rally to win last week…Hogs 27 Auburn 20

#12 Michigan @ NORTHWESTERN: OFF

Maryland over #13 GEORGIA TECH taking 14: While we’re disappointed in the Bees’ top-ranked ground offense allowing a 33-yard fumble return for NC State’s covering (or pushing) score with 20 seconds (20-freakin-seconds!) left, we still cashed our ticket, getting the Jackets early at 9 ½. Might be a good “over” play here with Tech going “over” in all four games and letting each opponent score at least 21. First meeting of these two since 2007’s win by Maryland 28-26 victory. Box Turtles tough to figure to-date…beating Miami, losing close game to West Virginia, then getting bounced 38-7 by Temple?!! Wasps are just 4-6-1 last 11 as favorites in Atlanta… Hive 34 Terps 24

#14 NEBRASKA over Ohio State giving 11: LOCK OF DA’ WEEK. Several months ago, this looked like a very troublesome game for the Pop Corn, who was seriously-embarrassed in their inaugural Big Tentacle Conference appearance by Wisconsin (though eliminating three INTs that became Badgers scores, the defeat looks much more palatable). Huskers did find some early success against Wisky back seven. Buckeyes were expected to have the full complement of players available for this one, but three players, including RB Boom Herron, have been scratched again for yet-another scandal (being over-paid or paid for work not done…[sound familiar, Oklahoma fans???!!]). Despite reasonable defensive performances, the damage has been done for State, suffering two losses and scoring 7 or less in two of last three overall. Big Dread hasn’t been impressive, just 1-3 ATS, with its only cover at Wyoming …Huskers 31 OSU 12

Connecticut over #16 WEST VIRGINIA taking 19 ½: Huskies are floundering under first-year guidance of Paul Pasqualoni, who led the Orange to uninspiring records of 4-8, 6-6 and 6-6 in his final three seasons in Syracuse. UConn’s two SU victories came vs. I-AA Fordham and Buffalo. The three losses, however (Vandy, Western Michigan and Iowa State) are by a total of 14 points. Big Least opener for the Huskies, who return most of the kids that backed their way into last season’s Fiesta Bowl beatdown by Oklahoma. Bowling Green got the brunt of Mounties’ frustration following bad loss to LSU…’Eers 27 UConn 13

#18 SOUTH CAROLINA over Kentucky giving 21: Carolina’s offense continues to be in major disarray and the Tenders need a confidence-booster. We think the visiting Mildcats, who managed the backdoor cover at LSU last week, are the ones that can provide it to ‘em. Scary layin’ the lumber with the Phightin’ Pheasants, especially since they’re just 2 of 11 giving points when lookin’ for payback. KY beat the Poultry 31-28 last season, but has yielded 107 total points over its past three tilts to-date, while points-scored has dwindled weekly from 27 down to 7. The experience on the Kentucky offensive line ain’t workin’ out…Cornish Hens 34 KY 9

INDIANA over #19 Illinois taking 14 ½: This got “lock” consideration. Illini may be the most-overrated 5-0 team in the country, showing three recent victories by a total of nine points and rallying to take all three…at home! Hosers are under new management and come off 16-10 loss to Penn State. Indy’s four defeats were by total of 19 points, but the losses were to Ball State, Virginia and (GASP!) North Texas! Just can’t lay this many on the road with UI squad walkin’ the tight-rope week-in and week-out…Illini 20 Indy 13

Missouri over #20 KANSAS STATE giving 3: This one also got a long look for “lock”. Wildcats mustered surprising wins over short-handed Miami and Baylor (on the strength of late Bears interception), but apparently the linesmaker ain’t havin’ any of the smoke and mirrors, installing K-State as a home dog this week. Tigers have owned this series, winning by double-digits in each of the past 5 seasons. ‘Cats’ other pair of wins were against Eastern Kentucky (by 3) and Kent State (37-0). Mizzou is already 2-0 ATS on the road this year and excels ATS when winning outright away from home…Mizzou 34 KSU 21

#21 VIRGINIA TECH over Miami giving 7 ½: VT 20 ‘Canes 10

UTAH over #22 Arizona State taking 3: Utes 17 Sun Devils 16

WAKE FOREST over #23 Florida State taking 13: ‘Noles 27 Deacons 19

TEXAS TECH (GASP!) over #24 Texas A&M taking 8 1/2: Vindy on current 3-18-1 (.142) forecast skid picking games involving the Red Raiders…and Tech is sniffin’ around the bottom of the rankings, searching for a way in. Also, while they won’t go against the official Tech tally, we were on the wrong side of “Guns Up” as best bets in back-to-back weeks already this year! (Tech installed the “pistol” offense this season and that shoulda’ been our first clue to not pick ‘em against Reno!). Reeling Aggies have suffered consecutive second-half meltdowns that squandered halftime leads of 17- and 18-points, respectively, in defeats to Oklahoma State and Arkansas. Looks like another track-meet, as Tech allowed 34 each to UNR and Kansas…Aggies 42 Tech 38

#25 BAYLOR over Iowa State giving 16: Baylor 44 ISU 20


We here at Vindy’s Picks just want to doff our helmets to maybe the best 1-3 team in the nation…Utah State for nearly beating Auburn, Colorado State and BYU!

After opening 0-2, the Frightenin’ Irish have posted straight three wins. Insiders say Notre Dame has thrown in the towel on Catholicism, instead adopting the pantheon of ancient Greece and is planning to replace the Touchdown Jesus with something a bit more intimidating, like…Touchdown Zeus or Touchdown Poseidon. Coaches have also scrapped the “Hail Mary” in favor of the “Hail Aphrodite”!

Notable trends to-date for unranked teams: Arkansas State 4-0 “under”, Iowa 4-0“over”, Marshall 4-1 ATS, MTSU 4-0 “over”, New Mexico 4-1 “over”, Ohio State 4-1“under”, Penn State 4-0 “under”, TCU 4-0 “over”, Temple 4-0 “under”, UCLA 1-4 ATS, UTEP 4-0 ATS, Virginia 0-4 ATS, Washington 4-0 ATS.

With the UNLV-UNR match this weekend, we mention the May approval by the Nevada Assembly of SB 441, allowing DMV to set up kiosks and terminals in private businesses for drivers to conduct DMV transactions online, with service fees going to the hosting businesses. Nice. Go to the sportsbook and get your license and registration renewed for a mere 10% vigorish! (Sorry…no parlays on those two items!).

Former Texas Tech coach Mike Leach has been noted as a possibility at a couple schools including New Mexico. The “Leftovers” column in the LVRJ suggests Leach, a pirate lore aficionado, would show up on the sidelines with an eye-patch and a parrot. Given Lobos recent win-loss history, we think Leach might simply teach alumni to say “Arrrrrrggghhh!” Maybe he could recruit Captain Jack Sparrow at quarterback.

Back in March, Cowboys wideout Dez Bryant got the boot from a Dallas mall after failing to comply with repeated requests to pull up his drooping pants. No truth to the rumor that the security guards-in-question threatened the precocious pass-catcher with an atomic wedgie!

Ex-Olympic Softballer Jennie Finch and hubby Casey Daigle (himself a former hurler in the Bigs), this year, welcomed second-son, Diesel Dean Daigle, into the world. Much ado was made about da’ pressure on first-born male son, Ace Shane Diesel, to be a pitcher but frankly, he coulda’ easily been tagged as an assassin, pet detective or…professional poker player!

Andy Rooney recently stepped away from his spot on “60 Minutes”. Vindy’s spies in State College, PA say the loveable 92-year-old curmudgeon has been named as head coach-in-waiting to replace Joe Paterno!

With hockey season starting Thursday, several local casinos have installed a trapezoid behind the sportsbook counter, so the ticket-writers can’t play a wager from either end of the counter without incurring a penalty!

Black Shirt: The obsidian tee goes to Nebraska QB Taylor Martinez for three interceptions that Wisky turned into touchdowns for one of our few correct chalk selections!

“Locked in a Box?”: The Bees fell a lone point short of covering at NC State and drop the lock record to 3-2 (.600).

Shoppe Talk: Hokies managed all of a single FG in outright loss to Clemson to go 0-4 (.000).

Vindy’s Week 6 Best Bets: Last Week: 2-4 Season: 14-11 (.560)
RUTGERS +6 ½ over Pitt, Temple -9 ½ over BALL STATE, Air Force +16 over NOTRE DAME, Syracuse -10 over TULANE, Weeziana Tech -3 ½ over IDAHO

BTW, Vindicator slid head-first into the sportsbook, leaving his wallet on the ground, apparently giving himself up…but the bookie, playing to the whistle, scooped up the wallet and continued to put Vin’s money toward more wagers!