Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Vindy's Picks 2012 Championship Week


LONDON, England (UPI)...While Congress tries to reach a compromise on the looming “fiscal cliff” and other domestic issues, the White House finds itself take-a-knee-deep in unexpected conundrums abroad. President Obama made an unscheduled stop at Buckingham Palace in an effort to convince Prime Minister David Cameron…and the royal matriarch, Queen Elizabeth…to allow the British Isle, contemplating a split from the European Union, to fill the void in the Big East left by the departure of Rutgers to the Big Ten. Elsewhere, Hillary Clinton made a hasty trip south-of-the-border after learning President Felipe Calderon wants to change his country’s moniker from Estados Unidos Mexicanos to just…Mexico. The Secretary of State is expected to recommend, and extol the international advantages of, a name with more pizazz, ie. “Ron Mexico”, and was quick to point-out that the national flag, itself, of our North American continental neighbor, includes…an eagle.

We’re hopin’ to carry the momentum of Week Thirteen’s 12-7 (112-120, .483) into the post-season. The election is long-over, but the Commander-in-Chief recently said Mitt Romney is still shovelin’…

(“It’s only weird if it doesn’t work”)

FRI. NOV. 30
PAC-12 Championship
#17 Ucla (+8 ½) over #8 STANFORD:
Yup, we saw this same contest less than a week ago! Bruins had no kinda’ running game in that 18-point loss (that wasn’t even really that close!). Conversely, Cardinal’s Stepfon Taylor should lock-up the school career rushing-yardage record before the 2nd Quarter (needing just 36 yards) begins! UCLA didn’t help itself discipline-wise either, taking a page from the Gators’ playbook with 12 hankies for 135 yards, and a minus-one turnover ratio. Stanford has won and covered four straight times now vs. UCLA, but is just 1-4 ATS in five tries as home chalk on the season. First DD-dog role for Bruins since getting blasted by Oregon in 2011 conference championship. Cubbies did win only road dog game this year, 45-43 at Arizona…Birds 23 UCLA 16

MAC Championship (@ Detroit, MI)
#19 Northern Illinois (-6) over #18 Kent State:
Sled Dogs snuck, virtually unnoticed, into the rankings. Both teams wasted little time putting away last week’s opponents, though Flashes did so with a pair of 1st Quarter defensive scores, and we suffered the consequences for changing our original decision in that one. Third consecutive MAC title game for the Huskies (1-1 SU/0-2 ATS). NIU now with 8 covers in 11 tries vs. FBS, but no signature wins (lest ya count 30-23 victory over 1-10 Kansas) and a one-point neutral site defeat to Iowa. As we noted previously, State lost badly at Kentucky, then later toppled Rutgers by almost two touchdowns in the Garden State. Northern Illinois won 40-10 last year in only meeting over previous 3 seasons. Canines have only one MAC spread-loss on the year and are 18-7-1 in the MAC over the past 2+ seasons, showing a 33-6 SU record overall in last 39 games. The victory would allow Kent to surpass its best season-ending run of 2004. Two of the top eleven rushing offenses will go head-to-head. Huskies are stingy on D, giving up just 17.5 points a game. We wanna’ cheer Kent here, but..NIU 37 Kent State 27


#1 Notre Dame: IDLE (next…da’ bowls!)

SEC Championship (@ Atlanta, GA)
#2 Alabama (-7) over #3 Georgia:
Last meeting was 41-30 ‘Bama victory in Athens in 2008, so only Coach Richt remains from that contest. Tide playing without a top receiver, Kenny Bell, due to injury, but always have the excellent running game in place with numerous options to tote the rock. The Iron Bowl turned into da’ Tin Bowl with Auburn crumpling up like so much aluminum in our predicted shutout (thang ya…thang ya very much!). ‘Dawgs weren’t distracted by this one in 42-10 rout of Joja’ Tech. UGA’s on nice 5-0 SU/4-0 ATS run, with four laughers following mistake-filled Cocktail Party win over Florida. Georgia’s past six tilts have finished “under” the total, as have three of Tide’s last four. Elephants have ruled last half-dozen on neutral ground and Aaron Murray ain’t Johnny Football…’Bama 27 Joja’ 13

#4 Ohio State: IDLE (next…2013 regular season)

#5 Florida: IDLE (next…da’ bowls!)

#6 Oregon: IDLE (next…da’ bowls!)

#7 KANSAS STATE (-11) over #23 Texas: David Ash reverted to form in outright loss to TCU, committing multiple turnovers, and will get afternoon wood on da’ bench, as Case McCoy gets the start at QB in this one. While da’ ‘Cats were resting after only SU loss (52-24 at Baylor….OUCH!) Oklahoma somehow, without leading in regulation, managed the OT win. The BCS berth for the TBA Big Twelve champs is still up for grabs. ‘Cats, 7-3 ATS vs. I-A clubs, are lookin’ for first 11-win season since 2003. State’s beaten the line last five times vs. Steers, (though were underdogs in all five) and is 4-1 ATS as home fave (missing only nearly-four score spread vs. North Texas). Texas has lost each of last two years (by 4 last season and by…25….here in 2010). Disappointing finish for ‘Horns team that acquired some of our preseason money on a futures bet to earn a national title. Two of Cattle’s three SU defeats are by 7 or less…KSU 31 Texas 14

#9 LSU: IDLE (next…da’ bowls!)

#10 Texas A&M: IDLE (next…da’ bowls!)

#11 South Carolina: IDLE (next…da’ bowls!)

#12 Oklahoma (-6) over TCU: Lucky Sooners, who got an 81-yard punt return for a score in the 4th Quarter and a TD with 4 seconds to play in regulation and eventual Bedlam victory vs. Okie State, could win or at least share the conference crown with a win. A loss here sends K-State to the big money game. Toads jumped on early Longhorns miscues to pull the upset, but regardless of the outcome here, will finish below double-digit SU wins for the first time in six seasons. OK throws well and defends the pass well. Froggies excel at stopping the run, but beat Texas with a pair of INTs near their own end zone and limited Texas to field goals until late in the game. Sooners have won 4 of last 5 games on the year, but covered just one and are coin-toss worthy laying points on the road…OK 29 TCU 21

ACC Championship (@ Charlotte, NC)
#13 Florida State (-14) over Georgia Tech:
Bees backed into this one after Al Golden fell on his sword again for the future greater-good by imposing yet-another bowl-ban on his Miami squad. We’ve already noted Tech’s failure-to-appear last week. Anybody outside Atlanta wanna’ see a 7-6 conference “champion” go to a BCS bowl?! Wreck is mere 6-5 ATS, 6-6 outright and had been on 3-0 SU/ATS roll until meeting in-state rivals. The Buzz took most-recent pairing, 49-44, in Tallahassee (2009). Four of Insects’ defeats in 2012 have come by more than this many. Accounting for two scoring runs of 30+ yards, Florida still managed almost 4 ypc vs. State. GT still top-four in rushing-yardage, but that got it little vs. Georgia and now faces top-four rush defense, allowing south of 98 ypg and just 9 scoring runs all year, but maybe a little distraction on the State sideline with DC Mark Stoops moving on to coach…Kentucky? … FSU 37 Wasps 19

Big Ten Championship (@ Indianapolis, IN)
Wisconsin (+3) over #14 Nebraska:
Tell us the Huskers weren’t any more-motivated than mere 7-point win over incompetent Iowa team to get to the Big Tennyson Conference title contest. Really? Dare we utter the “f-bomb” ...”fix”????!!!!! Rose Bowl officials would rather send two-loss Huskers through to Pasadena than five-loss Badgers, but Cheese-Heads defense might just be enough to disappoint them. Badgers played valiantly in losses to the Buckeyes and at the alma mater, and get the championship-shot only because both those clubs are in figurative NCAA 9-by-12 jail-cells until next September. Not a lot of momentum for UW though, having lost three of previous four contests overall. Big Dread is clearly the hotter squad, showing only a single defeat…at Columbus. Children of da’ Corn edged Wisky 30-27 in Lincoln to close out September. Badgers should neutralize Rex Burkhead. Can NU stop Montee Ball? One of the don’t-belongs this week will be successful. Over Joja’ Tech, we’ll take…Wisconsin 21 Nebraska 20

#15 Clemson: IDLE (next…da’ bowls!)

Nicholls State @ #16 OREGON STATE: No line. (Rescheduled from weather-postponed 9/1 date)

#20 Utah State: IDLE (next…da’ bowls!)

#21 Michigan: IDLE (next…da’ bowls!)

#22 Northwestern: IDLE (next…da’ bowls!)

#24 Oklahoma State (-4) over BAYLOR: Can you say…”over the total”???!!!! Both teams are bangin’ da’ boards for Arena League-like numbers. Last three totals (before considering OT scores) for Da’ Bears…76, 76 and 90. Last four totals for State…74, 89, 80 and 90!!! Cowboys’ only outright defeat in current 5-1 SU/ATS run was at Kansas State, a team whose season came to sudden-stop at the hands of Baylor two weeks ago. Bears have also covered 5 of last 6 contests, but won just three. OKSU has had their way with Baylor, even during the RGIII years, covering the last six seasons. Cowpokes were seriously-efficient vs. Oklahoma in narrow OT loss, scoring 48 points with less than 24 minutes TOP. Two-points per minute vs. Schooners team that, even accounting fer 49 to West Virginia, was permitting just 22.5 ppg until then.???!!! Oregon-light??!...State 51 Bears 44

NEVADA-RENO (+8 ½) over #25 Boise State: Wolfpack got blown-out here earlier this month by Fresno State, but Broncos are doing it more on defense, leading the Mountain Jest in all defensive categories and ranking 8th nationally in total D, with the third-best pass D. Only two Broncos opponents posted more than 17 points. “That school up north” has seven victories on the year, but covered only two games overall (at Cal and at Hawaii, both in September) and just 3 of last 15 (with a pair of pushes). Reno could have nine wins, but let South Florida and San Diego State off the hook late to suffer one-point losses to both. Despite UNR offense accumulating better than 500 yards per game behind 142 yards per game on the ground by RB Stefphon Jefferson, we think Broncos will dominate on D and lead State to a share of the MWC title. Nonetheless, we’ll back the ‘dog for ATS win…Boise State 21 UNR 17

C-USA Championship
TULSA (-1) over Central Florida: LOCK OF DA’ WEEK.
Rematch of recent 23-21 home-win by Tulsa. Both clubs are 7-1 SU in C-USA and 9-3 on the year. Gilded Gusty-Winds have scored a bit less and given-up a bit more than defense-minded UCF Knights, whose totals are 8-2 “over” since 15-point loss (and cover) at Ohio State. Despite middlin’ 6-6 record vs. the line, Central Florida’s only other outright losses came by 5 and 2. Tulsa’s no sure-thing with-or-without the handicap, going just 6-5 ATS to-date. Hurricane lost at ISU to start the year and lost by just 4 at Arkansas in early November. Tulsa will keep it on the ground for the most part, behind 12th-ranked rushing offense. Tulsa has lost just one of last eleven tilts on the home-field…Tulsa 24 UCF 20


BTW, officials in England this summer renamed the Clock Tower of Britain’s Parliament, AKA “Big Ben”, after the Queen Mum, acknowledging her 60-year reign. We’ve been watchin’ Pittsburgh games all season, just hopin’ to hear the first broadcaster refer to a certain Steelers’ quarterback as… “Elizabeth Tower”!!!! (And frankly, following the three-pick performance of back-up Charlie Batch (not all his fault) in Sunday’s 20-13 loss to…[GASP!] da’ Browns, Steel City fans would likely welcome somebody named Elizabeth Tower at quarterback next weekend!)

In related news…the Jacksonville Jaguars will play one “home” game in each of the next four seasons at London’s Wembley Stadium. Nothin’ says Royal Family and bangers & mash quite like Jacksonville football!!! Nonetheless, fans who’ve already done Madame Tussaud’s and Stonehenge can always take in the changing of the right and left guard, Windsprint Castle and the ever-popular Albert Haynesworth Hall!

The May 2012 ish of the PSU Alumni Insider said the alma mater was jockeying to win a Google-sponsored contest to be first to safely park a privately-owned spacecraft on the moon, take pics of the moon’s surface and “mooncast” ‘em back to da’ home planet. Anybody else out there contemplating a remake entitled “Star Trek III: Da’ Search for Paterno”, in which a renegade landing party on Genesis locates a rapidly-aging JoePa alive-and-well and quipping, “I have been…and always shall be…your coach.” ????!!!!

While we expect Lehigh’s college basketball season to be closer to “float like a buttermilk, sting like Aunt Bea”, when last year’s Patriot League rep was droppin’ Duke like a charge, did anybody else out there envision Howard Cossell on the Mountain Hawks sideline yelling, “Down goes Frazier! Down goes Frazier!”???

Army of Darkness meets VCU hoops…”The name’s AshSporting Goods. Shaka Smart…Shaka S-Mart!”

If the NHL labor dispute isn’t settled soon, Eric Idle and company might have to produce another flick…called…Monty Python & the Goalie Grail!


Best Weekly Effort: Tie between Weeks 2 & 13, both at 12-7.

Worst Weakly “F”-fort: No contest…Week (Strych)Nine’s 4-15 (Uggghhhhh!!!)

WEBER-FRIENDLIES (Best percentage on the predicted side of the spread; minimum 7 at-bats in the forecast): This year’s Allstate “Yer in Good Hands” award goes to (drumroll, please)…the Spooners of Oklahoma at 8-2 (.800). Second-Place to Ohio State (8-4, .667) and Honorable Mention to Notre Dame, Clemson and LSU…all at 7-4 (.636)

FLAME-THROWERS (Worst percentage on the predicted side of the spread): On the basis of the tie-breaker for most appearances, USC takes the not-so-coveted Grill-Master Supreme award (3-9, .250). Suckin’ Place to runners-up…UCLA and West Virginia (both at 2-6, .250). And Dishonorable Mention to the Seminoles of Florida State (3-7, .300).

We remind readers, however, that dat’ Rod Hubble guy from the State-Farm Discount-Double-Check commercials says “trophies are fer people with self-esteem issues”! (“Raahhjjaaaahhhs!”)

Didn’t make da’ cut, but we’ll be watchin’: Cal (1-4, .200), Nebraska (3-6, .333) and Arizona (2-4, .333)

Thanks for playing: Stay in touch next season…Mississippi, Mizzou and Okie State…each at 4-1 (.800)

Black Shirt: We’re doling-out another pair of titanic tees to kickers Kyle Brindza of Notre Dame and Basil Drew of the Buckeyes for nine combined FGs, two from 50+ at the first-half gun, helping their respective teams meet the predicted chalk-covers.

“Locked in a Box?”: We knew we’d shouldn’t have gone back to the well with Rutgers, who got pummeled by Pitt, dropping the record to 3-10 (.230).

Shoppe Talk: Almost closed Ye Olde Taxidermy Shoppe fer the holidays, with all the usual suspects ending up on the foreseen side of the number, but we left the light on for the aforementioned Corn Meal of Nebraska (3-6, .333)!

Vindy’s Championship Week Best Bets: Last Week: 6-1 Season: 35-30-1 (.538)

Slim-pickin’s, but…Pitt -6 over SOUTH FLORIDA, FLORIDA ATLANTIC +9 over UL-Lafayette, Middle Tennessee State +10 over ARKANSAS STATE

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Vindy's Picks Week 13-2012


PULLMAN, Washington (AP)...With the passing of marijuana-legalization legislation this month in Washington and Colorado on Election Day, the jury is still out on the impact for gridiron teams in those states. While there has been an increase in weekend trips to the Apple State by players from Eugene, Oregon and athletes from Ft. Worth trekking as far away as the Rocky Mountains, opinions vary on use, depending on the clubs-in-question. Reigning philosophies by media and coaches suggest the local Wazzou Cougars, Buffaloes of Boulder, and the Colorado State Rams have nowhere to go but up, so no harm-no foul. However, the Huskies of UDUB are bowl…er…um…post-season…-bound and should probably pass (the dutchie?) on the “herb superb”. As for the other club affected, the Falcons of Air Force, one cadet at the Academy, on condition of anonymity, laughingly said, “Don’t try this at home. These men are trained-professionals!”

We “rebounded” from the Week Eleven travesty with a middlin’ 7-7 (100-113, 469) for Week 12, and while Mike Leach has adamantly pooh-poohed allegations of abusing his players, he did fess up that the Washington State coaching staff would be more than happy to “belittle, intimidate and humiliate”…

(Preferred picks of shirtless FBI agents everywhere)

Texas Christian (+7 ½) over #18 TEXAS:
First meeting since 2008. Toads are 5-1 ATS in last six road dog chances, though 2-7 against da’ line facing fellow Lone Star squads (only once getting points). Usually, stout in the inaugural seasons in their new conferences, Froggies have lost 3 of last 4 in the Big 12 (covering only in the 2OT win at West Virginia). The ‘Legs have taken 4 of their 5 road games straight-up on the year. Might...emphasis on “might”…be a look-ahead game for Steers, who visit K-State next. Cattle QB David Ash has responded nicely following a little time on da’ pine in wake of consecutive defeats by West Virginia and Oklahoma, and narrow triumphs over Baylor and Kansas, tossing five scoring passes and rackin’ up 628 yards during pair of dubyas prior to the bye week. If the State of Texas makes good on its threat to secede, teams like the Steers and Frogs could still play south-of-da’-border in that other NCAA…”Need Corona Asap, Amigo!”…Texas 28 TCU 24

FRI. NOV. 23
#8 Louisiana State (-12 ½) over ARKANSAS:
We considered this for “lock”. What a difference a year makes?! This time last season, the Pork Chops were 10-1. They did however get smoked 41-17 in Baton Rouge. Unless the Hogs’ seniors rise up, because at 4-7 SU/2-8 ATS there’s nothing else to play for, this contest may be over early. Bengals big 4th Quarter rally to beat Ole Miss, who might be worthy of watching in 2013, prompted Les Miles’ Lifetime-worthy post-game commentary. No SEC Championship game for State to look ahead to, so the focus will be here. Pigs were hammered 45-17 at Mississippi State last week in a game that put Arkansas’ first losing ATS season in conference play since 2006 in stone…LSU 29 Arkansas 10

#17 Nebraska (-14 ½) over IOWA: Big Dread 27 Hawkeyes 7

Ohio (+10) over #23 KENT STATE: Flashes 34 Bobblecats 29

#24 Northern Illinois (-19 ½) over EASTERN MICHIGAN: MAC West cellar-dwellin’ Eagles have been competitive the past two weeks, losing by three to the Chippies and upsetting Western Michigan at Kalamazoo as nearly two-touchdown dogs, but we’ll chalk that up to the rivalry among the directional schools. EMU has been pelted by the better teams on its schedule and has allowed at least 23 points to everybody, with four opponents climbing into the 40’s or 50’s. Huskies have dominated conference play for almost three complete seasons, going 23-2, with one of those defeats coming in 2010 MAC Title contest. Eagles did play NIU close in 18-12 loss last year, getting about an 18-point handicap. Northern Illinois showcases QB Jordan Lynch, a dual-threat guy rated top-ten in passing and rushing nationally. ‘Dogs had been on 6-0 spread-run until missing cover week in win over Toledo… NIU 41 Eaglets 17

SAT. NOV. 24
#1 Notre Dame (- 6 ½) over USC:
Irish 23 USC 13

#2 ALABAMA (-31 ½) over Auburn: Are you freakin’ kiddin’ us???!!! Just when it looked like the SEC-presence in the National Championship game had finally come to a merciful end, Alabama has only to defeat…by 1at home… rival Auburn team havin’ a down year, to ensure it…or at minimum (barring upset by the ‘Ramblin’ Wreck)…fellow-conference squad Joja’…plays for the whole kit-n-kaboodle. ‘Bama has just one cover in five home games on the year, but given his borrowed-time, Nick Saban won’t hesitate to pile-on to avoid another slip-up. We’ll call for Elephants’ fourth shutout of 2012…Alabama 41 Auburn 0

Georgia Tech (+13 ½) over #3 GEORGIA: Joja’ 42 ‘Jackets 37

#4 OHIO STATE (-3 ½) over #20 Michigan: Buckeyes have nothing on the line except that tiny, little thing called an undefeated season…after the folks on Capitol Hill rebuked a plea from Columbus to pardon the program. (Obviously, the Commander-in-Chief’s allegiance lies with Northwestern). Michigan can still play for the Big Tenement tiara, but has put its fate in the hands of a back-up QB, with Denard Robinson elsewhere on the field due to injury-constraints. In light of the pic sent in May via Twitter, by Wolverine-signee Logan Tuley-Tillman (who was wooed by Urban Meyer well-after he committed to Big Blue) setting fire to what appeared to be OSU recruiting-literature, team captains will forego the usual coin-toss and meet at midfield, take 10 paces, wheel and burn each other’s playbook. The first player to be left holding a pile of ashes will have the choice of receiving the ball or deferring to the second-half!…OSU 17 Michigan 11

#16 OREGON STATE (+9 ½) over #5 Oregon: Quack Attack 35 Beavers 31

#6 Florida (+8) over #10 FLORIDA STATE: UPSET PICK OF DA’ WEEK #1. We’re not convinced having starter Jeff Driskel under center woulda’ made much difference in Florida’s 23-0 win over AA Jacksonville State. It should make a difference here. ‘Noles are hitting the board for almost 43 ppg, but two of the top four defenses go at it this week and we expect little scoring. Gators have very remote national title game shot. State’s already sewn-up the ACC conference crown bid. Both play for possible at-large BCS bowl berths. Florida’s won and covered three of four games vs. ranked opponents, including A&M and LSU, while ‘Noles have one SU victory and one spread-loss in that category (vs. Clemson). State has both wins the last two years, with UF mustering no more than 7 points in each loss, while committing 8 turnovers over that span. Crocs are, however, plus-13 in turnover margin this season …Gators 19 FSU 17

#7 Kansas State: IDLE (next 12/1 vs. Texas)

#9 TEXAS A&M (-21 ½) over Missouri: Aggies 44 Mizzou 20

#11 Stanford (-1 ½) over #15 UCLA: Cardinal maybe caught a break to beat the Ducks in the extra frame, but still have the ground attack and defense necessary to get by UCLA. Both sides feature sophomore quarterbacks accompanied by senior rushers in the backfield. Bruins allowed about 8 yards a clip to USC’s McNeal. Redbirds’ Stepfon Taylor went for 161 vs. the Mallards. UCLA has won 10 of last 12 at the Rose Bowl and win or lose, Bruins have a date on November 30 for the 12-PACK crown…Stanford 20 UCLA 17

#13 South Carolina (+4) over #12 CLEMSON: Tigers 24 Poultry 21

#22 Oklahoma State (+7) over #14 OKLAHOMA: UPSET PICK OF DA’ WEEK #2. Cowboys rush defense should make Sooners one-dimensional and force them to try to match State’s pace. Sooners’ overall body-of-work is better and State did win in 34-point blowout in Stillwater last year following 8 consecutive losses to its rival. We’ll take Landry Jones 554-yard aerial extravaganza vs. Mounties’ wafer-thin defense with a grain of salt. Line looks about right for public perception in light of Sooners’ 5-point home loss to K-State and Cowpokes’ 14-point road loss in Manhattan. A victory by OKSU would contribute to a 3- or 4-team tie for the Big 12 crown…State 38 Sooners 31

Connecticut (+11 ½) over #19 LOUISVILLE: Cardinal 17 Huskies 9

#21 Rutgers (+2) over PITT: LOCK OF DA’ WEEK. Rutgers defense put the clamps on Cincy’s otherwise-potent offense, limiting the ‘Kats to a virtually-meaningless FG with 11 seconds to play. Can’t see the Panthers faring much better. It was announced the Knights will bolt for the Big Ten following Maryland’s green light for the Terps to do likewise, bringing the conference to 14 squads. Is it any wonder America’s “utes” lag behind the rest of the world in math????!!!...Paladins 16 Pitt 7

#25 (tie) UTAH STATE (-39) over Idaho: USU 54 Tater-Heads 10

MISSISSIPPI -1 1/2 over #25 (tie) Mississippi State: Ole Miss 31 Bulldogs 27


BTW, citizens in Colorado Springs report a sudden shift in the armament of unmanned-drone sorties…from Hellfire missiles to Twinkies and bags of Doritos!

In related news, the “gone fishin’” sign for Hostess should signal an end to certain early-season (or in the case of the SEC, November) non-conference contests by several FBS powerhouse teams! In defense of the SEC’s late-season pastry-party, we note that five of seven (count ‘em, 7!) I-AA opponents last week were currently or had been ranked in the FCS Top 25 sometime during the year! (Only Tide-foe Western Carolina had received no votes on the year and Gator-bait Jacksonville State had been no higher than #26).

As a follow-up to our Pitt-Rutgers comments…rather than learning world geography via the old tried-and-true method of making a “globe” by applying paper-mache to inflated balloons (or for the USC grads out there…under-inflated balloons) then adding outlines of the seven continents, today’s kiddies would better off forming land-masses over templates of the new NCAA conference realignments instead!

On the telly a couple times this week…Gone With the Wind. Our favorite quote from the film?...”We don’t know nothin’ ‘bout berthin’ no bowls!”

During OT of the Cowboys-Browns game, referee Ed Hoculi noted an incompletion/possible catch-and-fumble by a Cleveland WR was “under review”. Hoculi subsequently emerged and said “the previous play was not reviewable …and I didn’t review it.” Really? What play was the well-known official reviewing??!! Guys & Dolls? Fiddler on the Roof? Cats???!!! Speaking of that last one…did anybody else out there immediately think of the Broadway hit upon getting a gander (dander???!!!) at the Steelers’ striped unis in their game vs. Baltimore on Sunday???!!! We kept waitin’ for the tails to pop outta’ the pants!

For those who watched Green Bay’s ugly win over Detroit…yes…Packers’ kicker Mason Crosby and the alma mater’s Sam Fickens were twins separated at birth!

RG III became the first NFL player to wear Roman numerals on his jersey after a rule-change this season allowed it (along with the” jr.” or “sr.” designation). How ‘bout Esq., MSW, MD, attorney-at-law, PhD? Nicknames? Best thing to happen to pro uniforms since “He Hate Me”. Name on the front ain’t as important as da’ one on da’ back!?

Vin caught a headline yesterday proclaiming Tim Tebow has a “secret admirer” after the controversial back-up to Mark Sanchez got a delivery of “Yer Special!” balloons from an unknown source. We got an Andrew Jackson that says it’s…soon-to-be-divorced Danica Patrick!!!!

The NHL lockout reminds us that in May, the Bikini Hockey League came into existence. Women in skimpy outfits on inline skates, wielding sticks! Is the goalie also called the fishnet-minder??!! No “minor” penalties because the girls are all over 18!?? Now there’s a hip-check we’d like see replayed again and again! (And if Nevada had a team outside Clark and Washoe County, there’d be no penalty for hooking!)

Black Shirt: We split the gratuitous garment this week between Badgers’ teammates Kyle French, for missing an early 4th quarter FG try of 40 yards, and RB Montee Ball for a fumble near the Buckeyes goal-line late in the game, allowing State to eventually win in OT.

“Locked in a Box?”: We thank the Scarlet Knights for providing a rare lock win (3-9, .250) and bringin’ home our “upset” pick of da’ week over Cincinnati!

Shoppe Talk: The Bruins have 7 appearances and are now in the running for Grill-Master Supreme at 1-6 (.142), with fellow-hoser…USC…at 2-9 (.181) close-behind. Florida State’s hangin’ around at 2-7 (.222) and we’re puttin’ Louisville on notice at 3-6 (.333) overall, but 1-6 in last 7!!!

Vindy’s Week 13 Best Bets: Last Week: 2-4 (3-7-1 last two weeks) Season: 29-29-1 (.500)

CINCINNATI -13 over South Florida, West Virginia +1 over IOWA STATE, Maryland +24 over NORTH CAROLINA, UTSA +1 ½ over Texas State, OLE MISS -1 ½ over Mississippi State, Tulane +12 ½ over HOUSTON, MIDDLE TENNESSEE STATE -2 ½ over Troy

May all the turkeys be the ones you bet against this Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Vindy's Picks Week 12-2012


LONDON, England (ITAR-TASS)…Occupation of the Oval Office seems to be correlated with the outcome of certain sporting events...sort of. According to the “Redskins Rule”, if D.C.’s NFL team is victorious in its final home contest prior to Election Day, the sitting party would carry on. Or….should the Redskins be defeated in the game-in-question, a new party will take over the White House. That premise held solid for 18 consecutive campaigns, but missed in 2012. Conversely, a World Series trend that saw the GOP in power following an American League title and Democratic rule after a National League World Series crown continues to be on the mark, given the San Francisco Giants 2012 sweep and Obama’s election triumph. However, a little known theorem, the Summer Games Axiom, should actually come into play. This law suggests that if multiple disgraced athletes are dismissed from the Olympiad ahead of the election, the Capitol building is occupied by an actor who played a president on TV or in the movies, such as Harrison Ford or Dennis Haysbert.

Last April, North Korea threatened to reduce the South Korean capital “to ashes” in minutes. The bookies did just that to our Week 11 picks, leaving the 6-14 (93-106, .467) rubble smoldering throughout the holiday weekend. And we ain’t usin’ it as an excuse, but a couple of sportsbook employees intentionally disrupted your host’s warm-up routine by walkin’ through our pre-forecast drills, talkin’ smack the whole time.

Meanwhile, Donald Pleasance takes over the West Wing (and all the adjoining rooms) this year after being rescued on post-apocalyptic Manhattan Island by Kurt Russell as Snake Plisskin in “Escape from…

(Da’ New Normal [or for readers in Colorado and Washington…da’ new NORML!)

SAT. NOV. 17
#14 Stanford (+21 ½) over #1 OREGON: We looked at season scores and history, and frankly, we’re backin’ Stanford here only on the premise that SU is the best D the Mallards have faced all year. The key will be Ducks’ Kenyon Barner, who leads the country’s best rushing offense vs. Cardinal’s top rush defense. There’s some value in that stat since Cardinal has blown-out only Duke and Colorado, so the other contestants were not forced to abandon the ground attack early. Stanford’s also allowing mere 17.2 ppg to opponents. SU hasn’t been good as a road dog, failing its last five tries. Only Arizona hit the board for more than 23 vs. the Birds, who will likely have to limit Drakes to all-season low in points-scored and pick-up their own offensive production to cover. Best guess for “wish we had it back” choice…Quack Attack 41 Redbirds 24

#2 Kansas State (-11) over BAYLOR: K-State 38 Bears 24

#3 NOTRE DAME (-24) over Wake Forest: We changed our initial pick here and we know what that means… Irish 31 Deacons 3

Western Carolina @ #4 ALABAMA: No line.

Georgia Southern @ #5 GEORGIA: No line.

#6 Ohio State (+3) over WISCONSIN: While State got the extra week to practice, resurgent Badgers were busy making upstart Indiana look like the porous Hoosiers of yore. Buckeyes have won this series four times in last five years, losing by 13 here in 2010. Wisky’s OT loss to Michigan State was its first since 3-point defeat at Nebraska in late September and just fifth home loss in almost eight seasons. RB Montee Ball will have difficulty running on the Big Ten’s second-best rush D. Neither side is quite as adept at defending the pass. Badgers have allowed 17 passing scores with just six INT. State shows a 13-13 ratio. Undefeated Buckeyes will be tested, but survive…OSU 20 Wisconsin 14

Jacksonville State @ #7 FLORIDA: No line.

Mississippi (+19) over #8 LSU: Bengals 27 Rebels 13

Sam Houston State @ #9 TEXAS A&M: No line.

#10 Florida State (-31 ½) over MARYLAND: Terps have been putting a linebacker under center of late with four injured quarterbacks unable to go. Clemson took a big lead then took mercy on Maryland, not scoring after the 11-minute mark of the second half. Having dodged an upset at Virginia Tech, look for ‘Noles to squander the first-quarter then take no prisoners and bash the Turtles…FSU 49 Maryland 10

#11 CLEMSON (-18) over NC State: Top CU-signee Robert Nkemdiche reneged on his commitment to the Tigers last week. No surprise. In July, he said he was pullin’ the plug on his agreement to play for the school unless it tendered a scholarship to prep-teammate Ryan Carter. Reminds us of a certain Godfather segment…”you come to me and say ‘Dabo Sweeney, give me justice.’ But you don’t ask with respect. You don’t offer friendship. You don’t even think to call me Coach. Instead, you come into my office on the day my team is to be recruited and you ask me to commit NCAA violations. Someday, and that day may never come, I’ll call upon you to do a service for me. But until that day, accept this justice as a gift on your signing day.”...Clemson 41 NC State 20

Wofford @ #12 SOUTH CAROLINA: No line.

#13 Oklahoma (-11) over WEST VIRGINIA: Spooners 42 Mounties 27

California @ #15 OREGON STATE: OFF

Minnesota (+19) over #16 NEBRASKA: The Nitwit Lions did not play well enough to win in Lincoln, but did not deserve to lose at the hands of the zebras, who blew the late fumble call and levied a phantom penalty earlier that continued a Nebraska drive at State’s expense. Big Dread had its own issues with penalties and sporadic special teams play. Gophers became bowl-eligible by beating Illinois last week (and got first road cover in doing so), but have been belted by the better opponents it has seen. Gerbils have won two of last three games and might catch the Cornbread a little flat, especially if they stack the line of scrimmage vs. RB Abdullah and make Taylor Martinez beat them through the air…Nebraska 30 Minny 14

#21 Southern Cal (-4) over #17 UCLA: Oh great…a match-up of squads that have produced a combined 3-13 record in the Picks thus far. Last year, Bruins got trounced by USC then backed their way into the conference title game, getting whacked again, then made a bowl game with a losing record. In 2012, however, 8-win Uclans can legitimately represent the South vs. probable North-winner Oregon and play in the post-season with no guilt. Bruins are 7-3 as home dogs and have won both games outright in which they got points this season. Still, history shows USC manhandling the Bruins 106-21 the past three years and while UCLA may have been sand-bagging in the second-half last week to avoid injury for this one, mere 8-point victory over short-handed and distracted Wazzou team doesn’t inspire confidence…USC 34 UCLA 24

#18 Texas: IDLE (next vs. TCU)

#19 LOUISIANA TECH (+3) over Utah State: We’re big fans of the work done by the USU Aggies this season (and in recent seasons), having beaten Utah, lost by 3 at BYU and lost by a deuce at Wisconsin, but we just have a hard time laying points against one-loss (2-point defeat at Texas A&M) Weeziana Tech, even if it’s in midst of 1-4 spread skid. State is the one team that could that potentially keep up and ambush LT. Still this is a lotta’ faith in the road fave in game that will probably decide WAC title. If ya like scoring, watch this one… Bulldogs 48 USU 44

#20 Louisville: IDLE (next vs. UConn)

#22 Rutgers (+6 ½) over CINCINNATI: LOCK OF DA’ WEEK. “UPSET” PICK OF DA’ WEEK. Big Fleece conference hosed us three times in three tries during Week 11 snafu. Then-#11 Louisville was exposed in 19-point loss at Syracuse, but we don’t think RU (8-3-1 road dog last 3+ years) will suffer the same fate. Knights, who scored three times in final nine minutes to pull away from stubborn Army, get the edge on defense while the quarterback battle between Gary Nova and Bearkats’ Munchie Legaux is pretty much a toss-up. Rutgers only defeat came vs. Kent State. UC lost at Toledo and at Louisville. Cincy had won five straight years in this series until NJ got a 20-3 decision in 2011. With Cardinals idle, ‘Kats could pull into a three-way tie atop the conference with a victory… Round Table 24 Cincinnati 20

OKLAHOMA STATE (-11) over #23 Texas Tech: Cowpokes 41 Red Raiders 21

Iowa @ #24 MICHIGAN: OFF

#25 Kent State (+3) over BOWLING GREEN: Much like the La Tech-Utah State analysis above, we look at the season and question why there’s a sudden shift in role for a team that been hot. Granted, Bee Gees are contending and hope to pull into a tie in the East Division with the visitors. Falcons, impressively for a MAC team, show a top six total yardage defense and occupy the 12-hole nationally in pass D. Unfortunately, Flashes do the grunt work on the ground well-enough to warrant 14th in the country. State, 9-1 SU (with bad September loss at Kentucky) has covered 7 of 9, including 5 of 6 road tilts already, including upset victory in Piscataway over damn-good Rutgers defense, scoring 35 along the way. Kent is now 15-2 outright in past 17 games. Streaking Falcons, who got crushed 37-0 at Virginia Tech early, are 6-0 SU/5-0 ATS and claim very-respectable 13-point loss in the Swamp to open the year, and got a bye off win over Ohio. BGU has burned bettors in 8 of last 9 tries after a break…Kent 24 Birds 23


BTW, the “Axiom” mentioned above, in the event no qualifying actor steps-up, does allow the White House to be had by someone who wasn’t actually a presidential candidate, “but did stay at a Holiday Inn Express” the night before the election!

The Sunshine State was too close to call on Election Night. In fact, officials are still tallying points from the Gators-Mizzou game!

Southern Cal canned a student manager for under-inflating pigkskins, reportedly giving his offense an advantage, by making the ball easier to catch and hold onto, in the first-half vs. Oregon. In related LA news, Lakers coach Mike Brown was sent packin’ following his team’s 1-4 start. Guess the Lakers’ balls weren’t blown up to regulation size either. (And given the double-digit win by the Ducks, we think the USC conspirator was standing on the wrong sideline!). Gotta’ wonder if under-inflated balls will become a feature in the EA Sports NCAA ’14 video game! (“If it’s in the game….!”)

A recent article by an AP writer suggested some NFL contests were being designated as “Homecoming” games, a la the high school and college traditions. In related news, a high-schooler in Iowa took a cardboard cut-out of Tim Tebow as her date to the May 2012 senior prom. Vindy spies say the two-dimensional likeness drove to-and-from the dance, was a perfect gentleman all night long and got the young lady home by the curfew-time requested by her parents! (She did, however, put a major crease in the figurative QB after attempting to make it conduct his signature-pose!). In related news, our fearless forecaster is planning to take let a little air outta’ his blow-up date to an upcoming holiday party just to test the theory mentioned above!

In the wake of some comments by Steve Spurrier, a local sports-writer recently posed a scenario in which college’s then- #1 team, Alabama, faced an NFL bottom-feeder, ie. Kansas City, and pondered who might win such a contest. There’s just one problem…da’ Chiefs ain’t good enough to finish as one of the top two in the BCS poll!

The San Diego Chargers were cleared last week of any wrong-doing when the league officially noted the “sticky towels” did not, in fact, contain any illegal adhesive substances, but rather were the results of players simply wiping the residue of mass-quantities of Halloween candy off their faces!

On the hardwood…2012 is 25th Anniversary of three-point shot. We feel funny tapping our whiskey glass on the bar a trio of times before drinking it or launching it toward the iron from beyond the arc, but okay…(Oh wait…!)

Black Shirt: The coveted tee goes to LSU safety Craig Loston for the 100-yard pick-six return with about a minute left, giving the Bengals the cover over Mississippi State and Vindy one of just six correct calls.

“Locked in a Box?”: The lock record falls to 2-9 (.181) after Weeziana Tech let itself get sucked into a track-meet with Texas State.

Shoppe Talk: The Trojans remain front-runners for Grill-Master Supreme at 2-8 (.200). The Florida State Seminoles draw our ire again at 2-6 (.250 and 1-5 in the past 6 tries). UCLA supported us last week, but still show 1-5 (.167). And if our “lock” picks were a team…boy, howdy!!!!!

Vindy’s Week 12 Best Bets: Last Week: 1-3-1 Season: 27-25-1 (.519)
Purdue -6 ½ over ILLINOIS, Indiana +17 over PENN STATE, Northwestern +6 ½ over MICHIGAN STATE, Eastern Michigan +13 over WESTERN MICHIGAN, East Carolina -10 over TULANE, Middle Tennessee State -9 ½ over SOUTH ALABAMA

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

Vindy's Picks Week 11-2012


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

#3 Kansas State @ TCU: OFF

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

#5 Ohio State: IDLE (next @ Wisconsin)

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Monday, November 05, 2012

Vindy's Picks Week 11-2012 Early Edition

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

Don't touch that dial. We'll be back in our usual time-slot on Wednesday night with the rest of Week 11 in its entirety!