Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Vindy's Picks Week 5-2015

UNITED NATIONS, New York (ITAR-Tass)…Talks between President Obama and President Vladimir Putin were reportedly frosty at best over topics involving Syria and other foreign relations issues this week, but things got really testy when the Soviet leader reiterated a plan by officials at the Kremlin to publically-humiliate citizens committing minor offenses by posting pictures of them engaged in the wrong-doing online and on entrances to apartment buildings where they reside. The Russian president said he would include bettors caught on camera making wagers with Vindy’s Picks at any Soviet sportsbook!

Meanwhile, far away from political tensions in the Big Apple, your prestigious prognosticator was makin’ like Salt & Peppa and pushin’ it reeeeal good with a 9-8-2 tally in Week 4 (34-36-3, .486)! Two years ago, Putin, in another PR move, piloted a personal-submersible fitty-meters-down off da’ Finland coast to take a peek at a sunken Russian vessel. Given his previous “adventure” outings, in which he staged an arranged-finding of a species of pre-historic eel and later tranquilized a tiger-cub straight from a zoo, we don’t care if he went spelunking in Helm’s Deep and discovered...

(Now with accompanying stress-relievin’ adult coloring book!)

#1 Ohio State @ INDIANA “over 64 ½”: Buckeyes 42 Hoosiers 27
#2 MICHIGAN STATE (-23) over Purdue: Spartans 44 Boilermakers 17

#3 Mississippi (-7 ½) over #25 FLORIDA: Da’ Chomp, 4-0 SU/3-1 ATS, is here with a hashtag solely on the strength of a missed last-minute FG by Tennessee. Ole Mist appropriately suffered its post-upset of ‘Bama vs. Vandy in spread-loss last week and should be focused for this one…Rebels 29 Gators 14
Texas (+16) (72) over #4 TCU: Best guess fer “Wish We Had It Back”, but both squads were involved in last minute-decisions last week, with Longhorns yielding a late FG in regulation (and we ain’t sure whether we should be upset with the “push” or happy with the “coulda’-been-ATS-loss-in-extras”)…TCU 37 Steers 27

Texas Tech (+17) over #5 Baylor (@Arlington, TX): This one got consideration for “lock” pick. Red Raiders are 3-0 ATS and could be without starting QB Mahomes, but should be okay with back-up Davis Webb. “Guns-Up” almost took out TCU last week in crazy 55-52 loss in game that was noted by your narrator as “upset alert”. We hope they can get up again for ranked, in-state rival Baylor, facing its first real challenge and to whom they lost 48-46 in 2014 …Bears 44 Tech 41
#6 Notre Dame (+1) over #12 CLEMSON: Irish 31 Tigers 24

#7 UCLA (-13 ½) over Arizona State: Bruins 35 ASU 17
#8 GEORGIA (-2) over #13 Alabama: Okay…we get the whole two-scores-in-the-4th-Quarter in losing effort vs. Ole Miss, but Tide was cruisin’…up 34-nada with over 10 minutes left and couldn’t register one more TD with what…the 5th-string?…against Weeziana-Corn-Row…to cover minus-38???!!! Nick Chubb continues to be “the man” for Joja’. First ‘dog role for Crimson Schnide since 2009 conference-crown match-up. UGA has lost just 2 of previous 23 SU between da’ topiary!...Georgia 31 Elephants 24

Eastern Michigan (+44 ½) over #9 LSU: State cost us yet-another “lock” pick with mere 10-point victory against Syracuse. Tigers collected 14 (count ‘em, fourteen!) yellow hankies, prompting Coach Miles to say his team needs to cut down on mistakes. EMU got shelled by Army, but LSU goes into SEC-opener at da’ Pugilistic Poultry next and Eagles have gone 1-3 in last four tries vs. the Top 25, losing by an average of 43 in the three blown covers. Why expend the energy on the Baton Rouge sideline?…LSU 37 EMU 3
#10 Utah: IDLE (next vs. Cal)

#11 Florida State (-19) over WAKE FOREST: ‘Noles 35 Wake Forest 11
#21 Mississippi State (+6 ½) over #14 TEXAS A&M: Aggies 28 MSU 24

#23 West Virginia @ #15 OKLAHOMA (“over 58”): LOCK OF DA’ WEEK. Mounties have scored 41 or better in each of their first three games. Sooners yielded a combined 62 points the past two games, while hittin’ the scoreboard themselves to the tune of 83…Boomer Schooner 38 WVU 35
#16 NORTHWESTERN (-4 ½) over Minnesota: N-DUB 27 Gophers 20

#17 USC: IDLE (next vs. Washington 10/8)
Arizona @ #18 STANFORD: OFF

Iowa (+7) over #19 WISCONSIN: UPSET ALERT. Badgers 19 Iowa 17 (We also lean a bit to “under 48”)
Kansas State (+7 ½) (50) over #20 OKLAHOMA STATE: UPSET PICK OF DA’ WEEK. We’re guessin’ that the halftime-show debauchery at the North Dakota game intermission’ll be the last time Wildcats band director Frank Tracz utters, “You have the Comm, Mr. Drum Major. Endulge yerself.” Just wonderin’ if the band had its musical instruments “set to stun”!...Purple Persians 27 Cowpokes 24

#22 Michigan (-15) over MARYLAND: Wolverines 30 Box Turtles 12
Washington State (+18) over #24 CALIFORNIA: Bears off back-to-back tough road-wins at Texas and at UDUB (which cost us a “best bet” pick last week). Wazzou opened the season by losing at home to I-AA Portland State, but has since edged Rutgers in New Jersey and whacked a poor Wyoming team in Pullman last Saturday. It’s Homecoming at Berkeley, but Cal won 60-59 in 2014, has an away-date at Utah next, has been lousy home-chalk the past couple seasons, and we ain’t comfortable layin’ almost three touchdowns here…California 34 Coogs 19

Students at Hampshire High School, West Virginia got to see brief footage from Fitty Shades of Grey after duping a teacher into letting them do so as “a reward”. An assistant principal in the vicinity put the kibosh on the flick just moments into it. The offending teacher eventually let his charges watch a certain segment of Monty Python & the Holy Grail featuring Sir Galahad at Castle Anthrax!

In July, NFL Commish Roger Goodell gave a thumbs-up to Tom Brady’s four-game sit-out, sending the case to court, prompting the Patriots’ beleaguered QB, after viewing a notable episode of Game of Thrones, to request… “trial-by-combat”.
The Apple Watch, released in April, contains a “taptic” engine, which simulates the feeling of a tap on the wrist. The  Pats are already trying to figure out how to circumvent uniform regulations and synchronize the timepieces in the huddle to defeat crowd noise during road games and eliminate the need for silent snap-counts!

In a post-loss tirade last Spring, Cincinnati Reds skipper Bryan Price blurted out 77 F-bombs to reporters. What self-respectin’ manager utters “forecast” nearly 80 times in response to media questions???!!!
Mark Zuckerberg recently announced plans for a Facebook “dislike” button. The social media site is going to pilot the gadget for the next couple months each time da’ Weber Kid announces publication of that week’s “Vindy’s Picks”!

Doing his best Ariana Grande impersonation, Vindy allowed himself to be captured on film licking unsold parlay cards at a local sportsbook!
Hooray (Again) for the Little Guys: Then-FCS #8 James Madison edged SMU 48-45.

“Wish We Had It Back”: BYU +5 over MICHIGAN after we questioned how much the Cougars had “left in the tank” last week.
“Locked in a Box?”:  The Bengals let da’ Cuse hang around way too long, continuing the “lock” woes, now at 0-4 (.000)!!!    

Black Shirt: This week’s award goes to Navy NT Bernard Sarra for recovering a fumble with 36 seconds to play, ending UConn’s final opportunity to score, allowing the Middies to cover -7 and bring in one of our two winning “best bet” selections! Honorable mention to da’ quarter that we used to make our DUKE +9 over Joja’ Tech choice via coin-toss!
Shoppe Talk: Joining Clemson is another set of Tigers…from Mizzou (0-3, .000)…and the large wooden Badgers of Wisconsin (0-3, .000)!

Vindy’s Week 5 Best Bets: Last Week: 2-2   Season: 8-8 (.500) North Carolina +7 ½ over JOJA’ TECH,  Western Kentucky -7 ½ over RICE, Boston College +7 over DUKE, Northern Illinois -2 ½ over CENTRAL MICHIGAN, East Carolina -5 ½ over SMU, Joja’ Sudden -6 ½ over WEEZIANA-MONROE, Colorado State +5 over UTAH STATE  

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Vindy's Picks Week 4-2015

LAS VEGAS, Nevada (FOX)…They came with their guns and their bombs and their stun-grenades and their tear-gas and their battering rams, prepared to subdue or rescue whatever they found inside after busting in the doors. Law Enforcement agencies from Homeland Security and Secret Service right down to Vegas Valley police departments and a troupe from the local actors’ guild portraying the Keystone Cops regularly-converged upon the currently-shuttered Riviera Hotel & Casino ahead of its impending implosion for participating in simulation exercises. Officials at the various departments, who monitored the exercises by video-camera said the looks on everyone’s faces was priceless when the responders unexpectedly encountered the Vegas Vindicator hiding out in the now-defunct sportsbook while penning his most recent set of weekly picks. Civilian witnesses say it was like watching the end of Blazing Saddles or the Blue Brothers, Rambo and Colonel Troutman in a charge vs. the Russians in Afghanistan in Rambo III, Beatrix Kiddo vs. the Crazy 88’s in Kill Bill: Vol.1 or Butch and Sundance in an ill-fated rush into the cross-fire of the Bolivian Army!

Fortunately, our Week 3 predictions survived the chaos! The ‘dogs howled, covering 14 of 19, resulting in a 10-8 (25-28-1, .472) final tally. With the generic search warrant he keeps in his cleats, Vindy’s kickin’-in the portal to the sportsbook with…
                                                      THE WEBER KID’S 2015 WEEK 4 FORECAST

(Within NFL standards for PSI…Picks per Square Inch!)

OREGON STATE (+15) over #21 Stanford: Cardinal 17 Beavers 10

Western Michigan (+31) over #1 OHIO STATE: OSU QB Cardale Jones, who waxed hospital-ridden youth Jared Foley 98-35 in an April game of NCAA Football was challenged by said opponent to a face-off in NHL 15. Of the original 63-point beatdown, Jones said “I took it easy on you, Bro.” Is it just Vindy or is anybody else flashin’ back to Faye Dunaway’s performance as Joan Crawford in Mommie Dearest who said “I’m bigger and I’m faster, I’ll always beat you.” (Which is probably what Urban Meyer said to Jones after relegating the QB to back-up status this week)…Buckeyes 41 WMU 17

Central Michigan (+27 ½) over #2 MICHIGAN STATE: Best guess for “Wish I Had It Back”. Da’ MAC’s been good (see “Hashmarks” below). As predicted, Sparty went thru the motions, especially in the second half, vs. Air Force off close win over the Ducks and failed to cover, giving up 3 turnovers.  MSU is yielding an averaging of 24+ points-against over first three matches.  Chippies are under new management and off OT loss at Syracuse. State has Big Tentacle-opener next vs. not-as-improved-as-expected Purdue…Spartans 38 Chippewas 13
Vanderbilt (+25 ½) over #3 MISSISSIPPI: Rebels 31 Admirals 9

TEXAS TECH (+7 ½) over #4 Texas Christian: UPSET ALERT. TCU laid 82 on Tech last season and could try to grind out a victory with the rushing game but Tech thwarted Arkansas’ two 1000-yard rushers from a year ago…Frogs 38 Red Raiders 34
Rice (+34 ½) over #5 BAYLOR: Bears 54 Owls 28

#6 NOTRE DAME (-28) over Massachusetts: This summer, a man who had imbibed a bit too much tequila initially swiped the Blarney Stone from the D Las Vegas (formerly Fitzgerald’s) before sobering up and remorsefully returning the rock. Hotel-resort ownership did not press charges, noting they were ‘just glad to get it back”. Likewise, a South Bend resident celebrated the Fightin’ Irish victory over Joja’ Tech with a bit too much Jameson whiskey and spirited-away a campus icon before apologetically-returning it to its rightful owners. The Notre Dame administration also waived legal action against the offender, saying “Our Lady is just happy to get Touchdown Jesus back”!...Leprechauns 49 Minutemen 16
Southern @ #7 GEORGIA: No line.

#8 LSU (-24) over Syracuse: LOCK OF DA’ WEEK. Yep, we have yet to convert a “lock” pick and now back our 4th straight chalk-selection in the category. Auburn had no solution to RB Leonard Fournette, who ran for two-bills-and-change on 19 totes. Only Eastern Michigan awaits the Bengals with next SEC contest still two weeks away…LSU 41 Orange 9
#9 Ucla (-4) over #16 ARIZONA: If UCLA’s freshman QB is truly “all that”, here’s the chance to show it. Bruins also swap out key defenders, getting one back from suspension after losing another to injury…UCLA 24 AZ 19

#10 Florida State: IDLE (next @ Wake Forest)
#11 Clemson: IDLE (next vs. Notre Dame)

#12 ALABAMA (-38) over Louisiana-Monroe: Tide logged 500+ yards of offense and was minus-five turnovers in loss to Ole Miss. Warhawks lost by 37 earlier at Joja’ and burn money getting points off a bye week… ’Bama 48 ULM 3
#18 Utah (+13) over #13 OREGON: UPSET PICK OF DA’ WEEK. Second choice fer “lock” pick. Following the Iggles’ 10-point “effort” in their home-loss to Dallas (who started already minus WR Dez Bryant and later lost QB Tony Romo) on Sunday, Chip Kelly was on da’ Bat-Phone to Oregon’s former OC-turned-Head Coach. Tony Helfrich. Kelly offered to swap several members of his defense in trade for Mallards QB Vernon Adams and RB Royce Freeman!...Utah 31 Drakes 27

#14 Texas A&M (-7) over Arkansas (@ Arlington, TX): Aggies 31 Bacon Strips 20
#15 Oklahoma: IDLE (next vs. West Virginia)

#17 NORTHWESTERN (-18 ½) over Ball State: Wildcats have pulled out some low-scoring wins vs. defensive-minded teams thus far, including our predicted upset of Duke. Cardinals are sieves, allowing an average of 36 ppg. Even with a visit from Iowa looming, we like…N-Dub 34 BSU 7
#19 Southern Cal (-6) over ARIZONA STATE: In the upset-loss to Stanford, Trojans were out-statted (is that a word?) in every category except return-yardage. We were high on the Shun Devils until they were throttled by A&M on a neutral field to open the year. Sarkisian can deflect a little heat with a nice win in his first road-game of the season. State’s won this contest two years running and been victorious in 14 of its last 16 in Tempe, but…USC 38 ASU 29

DUKE (+9) over #20 Georgia Tech: Bees 27 Duke 23
#22 Brigham Young (+5 ½) over MICHIGAN: Third road game in last four weeks for BYU. Not sure what’s left in the tank following two emotional upset-wins and a near-miss on Saturday at UCLA. UM coach Jim Harbaugh, before coachin’ his first game for Michigan, got a Twitter shout-out from Judge Judy, helped two people hurt in a roll-over crash near the school and spent a day as the first-base coach for the Oakland A’s. Also around the “diamond”, Vegas product and major leaguer Bryce Harper dispelled a myth that all who espouse the Mormon faith are fans of BYU. GASP! Does that mean all Irish Catholics don’t necessarily root fer Notre Dame or at least… Boston College???!!! Say it ain’t so!...Cougars 23 Michigan 20

Hawaii (+24 ½) over #23 WISCONSIN: USC transfer Max Wittek has been a reasonable addition at QB for the ‘Bows, who have sandwiched wins over Colorado and I-AA UC-Davis around a shutout loss at Ohio State (that saw UH still in it until the 4th Quarter). Wittek does show just a 5-4 TD pass-to-INT ratio however, but Hawaii has lost by this many just once in each of the last two years. Buckeyes won by 38 and Badgers hace Big Tenor opener next vs. Iowa…Wisconsin 31 Hawaii 8
TEXAS (+3) over #24 Oklahoma State: Second-best guess for “Wish I Had It Back”. Cowboys haven’t really faced a team of note. Steers’ coach Charlie Strong had the boys fight in a huge 4th Quarter that fell a point-short in 45-44 loss to Cal and the alumni are grumbling…’Horns 27 ‘Pokes 24

#25 Missouri (+2) over KENTUCKY: Tigers 19 KY 16

BTW, regarding our Ohio State commentary above, will Jones ultimately tell Foley…”Noooooo….wiiiirrrrrrre… hannnnnngerrrrrrrs!”?????!!!!
“Hi, I’m Vindicator…and I have Direct TV.” “And I’m Outta’-Control-Beer Vindicator…and I have cable.” Vindicator: “I can watch all my favorite teams, even during an Alaskan cruise.” Outta’-Control-Beer Vindicator: “I can only watch teams playin’ within a 24-frosted-mug radius.” Vindicator: “I can place wagers at the sportsbook with confidence.”  Outta’-Control-Beer Vindicator-“ I have to stack and scale empty kegs to change digital light bulbs on the betting-board to get favorable spreads before casino-security shows up!” Vindicator: “Don’t be like this Vindy. Get rid of cable. Switch to Direct TV.”

Last week, Queen Elizabeth was recognized as Great Britain’s longest-serving monarch at 23,231 days….or just-shy of JoePa’s reign as head coach at Vindy’s alma mater (and just-ahead of Virginia Tech’s Frank Beamer!)
If yer scoring at home: Two teams are perfect 3-0 ATS vs. I-A competition to-date…BYU and SMU. One team is also “perfect” against the line…Michigan State at 0-3. In fact the Big Tent-Peg, though winning 9 of 12 non-conference games outright, went 2-9-1 spread-wise! By comparison, the Mountain Jest went winless in 10 non-conference games vs. I-A foes, but did manage 5-4-1 ATS.

Meanwhile…”Baby Got…MAC???!!!” Mid-American Conference teams played 8 FBS non-conference games, winning just 2, but losing the remaining 6 by a combined 22 points, while going 6-0-2 ATS, led by Northern Illinois who ended up just 7 points behind the #1 Buckeyes!
Following its defeat by I-AA Furman on Saturday, Central Florida, which has hit the scoreboard for 14, 7 and 15 points respectively in the first three weeks (last in the FBS), offered a scholarship to 61-year-old mailman Doug Hughes from Florida Gulf Coast, who landed a gyrocopter on the Capitol lawn, well-after announcing plans to do it and getting past NORAD to make it happen! Hughes said he was considering the offer, but was waiting to hear from Minnesota, South Carolina and Utah State as well!

Equipment assistant John Jastremski and locker room attendant Jim McNally got the okie-doke last week from the NFL to return to their positions with the Patriots after originally bein’ benched for their roles in Deflategate. The ruling comes at a good time for the pair since their interim jobs as tire company tech and balloon-animal artist, respectively, weren’t quite workin’ out!
In related news, Bill Belichick let cornerback Marcus Butler (yep, same guy that secured the pick vs. Russell Wilson, allowing New England to beat Seattle in the Super Bowl) ride the pine for tardiness to the Pats’ first summer practice because Butler’s flight was cancelled by Mother Nature. We’re wonderin’ if all woulda’ been forgotten had the CB told Coach he was actually late because he was lettin’ a little pressure outta’ da’ plane’s inflatable emergency-slide!

“Wish We Had It Back”: OKLAHOMA STATE -24 over Texas-San Antonio. We overlooked an improving Cowboys’ D.
“Locked in a Box?”:   We’re now 0-fer-3 (.000) after Oklahoma State dismantled UTSA, grabbing 7 turnovers along the way!    

Black Shirt: This week’s highly-coveted ebony tee goes to Seminoles LB Terrance Smith for creating a fumble that was returned for touchdown, allowing FSU to cover vs. BC, starting Vindy on a nice forecast-dubya run!
Shoppe Talk:  The Sooners get a week-long pass, but the Tigers of Clemson blew it again (0-2, .000 season; 3-11 in last 14 appearances [.214])!

Vindy’s Week 4 Best Bets:  Navy -7 over UCONN, WESTERN KY -20 ½ over Miami-Ohio, WASHINGTON +4 over Cal,  MINNESOTA-Ohio “under” 46    Last Week:  3-1 Season:  6-6 (.500)

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Vindy's Picks Week 3-2015

LAS VEGAS, Nevada (CNN)…The Vegas Vindicator went into protective-mode after catching an Internet headline reading, “Trump Blasts Kelly”. Not an avid follower of politics, the prestigious prognosticator immediately contacted local police departments in Philadelphia, South Bend and New York City to check on the health and welfare of Eagles coach Chip Kelly, Fightin’ Irish coach Brian Kelly, and even Kelly Ripa of Kelly & Michael (Strahan of NY Giants fame). The well-meaning college football oracle was later stunned to know that the intended-target of the vitriol of “The Apprentice” star and brash financial mogul was actually FOX News host Megyn Kelly!

In light of Week Two’s 6-11-1 “performance” (15-20-1, .429 season), reminiscent of an early one in 2014 that led us to close-up shop and take the rest of that season off this time last year, perhaps one of the aforementioned celebrities will return the favor and alert an ATC Spotter (employed by the NFL to watch for signs of concussions and actually stop games to get a distressed player off the field) to keep an eye on Vindy in case he starts repeatedly-banging his head on the sportsbook counter and wanders to the wrong side of the blackjack table to deal pages from…
                                                       THE WEBER KID’S 2015 WEEK 3 FORECAST

(Sponsored this week by AshleyMadison.Com)

#11 Clemson (-5 ½) over LOUISVILLE: For having a depleted defense, Tigers have fared well to-date, yielding just 20 total points, including just 10 to Appalachian State team that averaged 36 ppg last season (though four Mountaineers turnovers and a dozen yellow hankies didn’t help the cause). Da’ Ville dropped a shootout to Houston as almost- two–TD chalk and is now one of two remaining candidates for the Game Four strategy from Marc Lawrence’s Playbook. Com that we mentioned in Week One. Redbirds have been horrible ATS at home the past two years…Tigers 29 Louisville 20

#9 Florida State (-8 ½) over BOSTON COLLEGE: Tribe started slow but pounded the ball on the ground to whack USF by 20. BC lost this one 20-17 last year with just 9 returning starters, same as they have this time. State was, however, coming off a tight victory over Miami just ahead of that game vs. the Eagles. Vindy’s staffers are fitting Chief Osceola’s horse, Renegade, fer an honorary “black shirt” given that da’ Noles (1-1 ATS) are the only team remaining in the Top 25 this week to have gone 2-0 fer Vindy’s Picks thus far!...FSU 24 BC 14

Idaho State @ #BOISE STATE: No line.

Northern Illinois (+34 ½) over #1 OHIO STATE: Up mid-4th Quarter by a mere 17-0 over da’ Bows and knowin’ your flustered forecaster had Hawaii +38, the Buckeyes reeled off three touchdowns in the final 9 minutes to push ????!!!! Are ya freakin’ kiddin’ us????!!!! OSU 42 Huskies 12
#15 Mississippi (+7) over #2 ALABAMA: UPSET ALERT. Tide eventually blew out Wisconsin to start the year, but couldn’t cover the large spread vs. Middle Tennessee State. Coker managed the game okay, throwing for 214 with a TD-pass and a pick, but got help from his running backs, D and special teams. We’ll forgive ‘Bama fer maybe looking ahead last Saturday. Ole Miss accounted for Tide’s only regular-season defeat, winning 23-17 at home. Nick Saban’s crew has lost just once in past 22 home games. Rebels have racked up 149 points in first two matches of 2015…Tide 17 Ole Miss 16

#3 TCU (-38) over Southern Methodist: Ponies, who’ve hit the board for 21 and 31 points, respectively, to open the season after averaging just 11 ppg a year ago, are now 2-0 ATS after barely covering +36 ½ vs. Baylor then beating North Texas last week to equal their SU win total from last season. Horny Toads took this contest 56-zip in 2014, held Stephen F. Austin to a meaningless 4th Quarter score and will grab style-points in 2015 anywhere they can find ‘em…Frog Legs 54 SMU 13
Air Force (+26 ½) over #4 MICHIGAN STATE: Spartans 29 Pilots 13

#5 Baylor: IDLE (next vs. Rice)
Stanford (+10) over #6 USC: USC 21 Trees 14

South Carolina @ #7 GEORGIA (“Under 54”): Gamehens were fortunate to take advantage of interesting play-calls by the Tarheels to secure a late 17-13 victory in Week 1, but fell 26-22 at home to…Kentucky in Week 2. All three of our calls on the total rather than the spread last week went down in flames. Nonetheless, we’ll gingerly venture into that territory again (and unofficially, we’d consider takin’ the Poultry with da’ 17 points). Nick Chubb should get lots of touches and burn clock, while Carolina’s got little on the offensive side of da’ ball. Over the summer, Steve Spurrier fired back at media suggesting the demise of the team was because he was too old to coach. This choice has nothin’ to do with the Ol’ Ball Coach’s chronological-advancement, just about talent on the field and historical results… Joja’ 27 SC 14
#14 Georgia Tech (-2) over #8 NOTRE DAME: This one got a look for “lock of da’ week”.  Irish were fortunate to leave Charlottesville with the dubya after losing QB Zaire and allowing 400+ yards of offense to the Cavs. While Zaire’s stand-in did have a pair of scoring throws, ND will lean on RB C.J. Prosise early. The Bees absorbed 3 sacks in 10 passing attempts in rout of Tulane, but that’s standard operating procedure for the ‘Jackets. Tech covered all five non-ACC games last season, while three of Leprechauns’ five losses were by a combined 10 points…GT 34 Rudy 24

#19 Brigham Young (+17) over #10 UCLA: Should the visitors win this one on a third “Hail Mary”…in as many weeks…,we’ll give up drinkin’, gamblin’ and several other hedonistic-atheist ways and join da’ LDS! Stayin’ on hot Cougars! (Oh wait…let’s re-phrase)….goin’ with streaking Mormons….(hmmm…that didn’t work either)… .um… how ‘bout …UCLA 28 BYU 20
Georgia State (+46) over #12 OREGON: Quack Attack 52 Joja’ State 17

#18 Auburn @ #13 LSU (under 49 ½): LSU 20 Auburn 17
Tulsa (+31) over #16 OKLAHOMA: Sooners 34 Tulsa 17

Nevada-Reno (+34) over #17 TEXAS A&M: We leaned initially toward A&M given that the Aggies totaled 270 rushing yards vs. Ball State and Reno granted 301 to Arizona. But A&M, up 49-3 at the intermission vs. the Cardinals, let Ball State score 20 of the final 27 points after halftime. Wolfpack was competitive, down just 8, before AZ took control in the last two quarters. It’s a big number and TAMU might just concern itself more with SEC opener in Arlington, Texas next week vs. Arkansas, despite Toledo’s upset of the Hogs over the weekend…A&M 48 UNR 24
Northern Arizona @ #20 ARIZONA: No line.

#22 MISSOURI (-21) over Connecticut: We knew UConn was in major rebuilding-mode and we blatantly-ignored that fact, taking da’ Huskies to cover 7 ½ vs. Army as a “best bet” in Week 2. Huskies 2-0 SU but have been dismal road dogs, even when not starting from scratch…Mizzou 34 UConn 10

#23 Northwestern (+3) over DUKE: Wildcats 24 Blue Devils 20
#24 WISCONSIN (-35) over Troy: Wisky 44 Troy 3

Texas-San Antonio (+24) over #25 OKLAHOMA STATE: LOCK OF DA’ WEEK. UTSA drew Arizona into a track-meet, but managed just a FG vs. D-minded K-State. Cowboys have been involved in a couple of low-scoring games to-date, but could be enticed to open it up a bit here. State has won the past two seasons by 21 in 2013 and 30 last year.  A trip to Austin looms for …OKSU 31 Roadrunners 21

BTW, Vindy also sent the authorities to check-in on artists and actors Clint Eastwood of Kelly’s Heroes, Kelly Clarkson, Kellie Pickler and Kelly Osbourne…just in case!
Waaaaaaaaaaahhhhh! Three of the teams we were backin’ last week lost their startin’ quarterbacks (Utah, Notre Dame and UNLV), contributing to blown covers and three of our losses! (Thank you for listening. We now return you to our regularly-scheduled “hash”!)

Sam Boyd Stadium has undergone some cosmetic renovations to provide more of a “home-field” feeling for the Rebels, including diamond-shaped yard-markers and the trademark “Welcome to Vegas” sign in the end zones. Coach Tony Sanchez was mum on other features coming in the future, but prior to the start of the season, said, “We’ll be crankin’ da’ music…”. Hmmm…Vindy interpreted that to mean some Radioactive from Vegas-based Imagine Dragons…or Elvis…maybe even…Britney! We didn’t see da’ game, but based on the 37-3 loss to UCLA, it was apparently selections from…Celine Dion!!!!
Vindy texted a pizza emoji to Domino’s. They delivered a losing two-team parlay-wager!

To add insult to injury, our Eagles -1 over ATLANTA bet, placed a few weeks before the season, also went down in flames! Hey, Chip! We hear Oregon calling!
Speaking of losers, for those outside the region, da’ Mountain Jest played 10 non-conference games last weekend … and put all of ‘em in the “L” column!

Despite the untimely demise of Tom Brady’s cell-phone, officials at Northeast Bell report the pretty-boy Patriots QB was generally-aware of telephone-operator Gilda Radner making connections within a few-too-few ringy-dingies and is now under investigation by the FCC.
Congrats to Boston’s David Ortiz fer swattin’ HR #500 on Saturday! BTW, if the Red Sox slugger meets a certain medicinal- substance from “Game of Thrones”, would it be called…“Milk of the Big Papi”???!!!

Early in the baseball season, Pete Rose became a pre-game guest studio analyst for FOX Sports Network. His tenure was cut short after he was seen bowlin’ over a FOX baseball broadcast-anchor in an effort to dislodge his microphone!
“Wish We Had It Back”: Uh-huh. Pick one from last week….but we did peg our Idaho-plus–a- truckload over USC as our “best guess” for this category!

Locked in a Box?”:   Irish lost their starting QB and almost lost outright to drop the lock record to 0-2 (.000).    
Black Shirt: Goes to Eastern Michigan coach Chris Creighton, who helped his club win its first FBS non-conference game since mid-2012 and brought home Vindy’s only correct “best bet” selection in Week 2!

Shoppe Talk: Sooners solidified their footing at the Shoppe (0-2 on the season [.000] and now 4-13 streak [.235]). And upon further review, Clemson was actually 3-9 headin’ into this year (not 2-6 as we noted originally) and now 0-1 on the season (.000), but also on 3-10 (.231) streak in the picks, joining OK on the walls of the Shoppe!
Vindy’s Week 3 Best Bets:   Wake Forest-ARMY “under” 47 ½, Temple -10 ½ over UMASS, NAVY -3 ½ over East Carolina, Southern Miss +3 over TEXAS STATE  Last Week: 1-3     Season: 3-5 (.400)


Wednesday, September 09, 2015

Vndy's Picks Week 2-2015

MANHATTAN, Kansas (UPI)…The performance didn’t quite go according to the triple X’s and O’s. Kansas State marching band director Frank Tracz offered up a mia culpa following a botched effort that was supposed to simply depict a Kansas Jayhawk mascot squaring-off vs. the USS Enterprise during halftime of the North Dakota game. The resulting formation turned out to be, as interpreted by at least some, a little too little “starship” and a bit too much quarterback’s “sack”! Trying to lighten the mood a bit, Tracz invoked Captain Kirk, quipping, “Scotty…I need a scoring-drive in 15 minutes or we’re all gonna’ die!”, leading one reporter to respond with, “I am now…and always shall be….your frenulum.”

Meanwhile, Vindy had a chance to record double-digit forecast wins, but the Buckeyes wouldn’t cooperate on Labor Day, firing a photon-torpedo into the hull of the picks,  leaving our narrator with an opening volley of 9-9 (.500).
Our humble host now heads to da’ sportsbook wearin’ his Eastern Illinois Jimmy Garoppolo jersey (autographed by fellow EIU Panthers alum artsy-craftsy Tony Romo), despite the imminent-presence of Tom Brady in Da’ Patriots backfield this coming Sunday, in an effort to keep movin’ da’ selfie-sticks with…

                                                     (Penalized for “running uninflated to the quarterback”!)

#24 UTAH (-13 ½) over Utah State: Da’ Aggies’ special teams/offense took a major hit when an All-Conference punt-returner/pass-catcher got kicked to da’ curb in the preseason for….yep…an “undisclosed rules-violation”. That loss became more-important when da’ Aggies needed (and got) a late-game punt-return for TD (despite the return of Senior QB Chuckie Keeton), along with the 2-pt return of a missed extra-point by the Thunderbirds to pull out a 12-9 win. Da’ Utes made it look easy on their game-openin’ drive vs. Michigan, but da’ Wolverines had little resistance on most of its offensive drives until three INTs took ‘em out. Da’ U played 7 games in 2014 in which the final margin was 6 (six of which were by 4 or less). Marc Lawrence’s Playbook.Com notes USU’s defeats have been by more than 7 just five times since 2011 and have beaten 3 of 5 Top 25 foes in the past 3 years…Utah 29 USU 13

Hawaii (+38) over #1 OHIO STATE: ‘Bows probably saved Norm Chow’s job for another few weeks with the upset of the visiting Buffaloes. Marc Lawrence’s Playbook.Com recommends wagering against the previous season’s national title-holders off a straight-up victory and playing out-of-conference, especially if laying 6 or better and UH hasn’t lost by this many since mid-2012. If this one goes bad, we’re throwin’ Mr. Lawrence under da’ bus… Buckeyes 44 Islanders 14

#2 ALABAMA (-34 ½) over Middle Tennessee State: ‘Bama returns just three starters on offense but used a balanced attack to eventually pull away from Wisconsin in the second-half. Defense is still the calling card though, allowing just 17 points to the Badgers. Blue Raiders haven’t played a Top 25 opponent since a 45-3 loss in mid-2012 to Mississippi State. That said, ‘Bama has not fared well ATS in non-conference games (last week notwithstanding), especially when laying this many and MTSU put up 70 on Jacksonville State to open the year. Over the summer, the EPA transferred its mobile radiation-monitoring laboratory from Sin City to Montgomery, Alabama, to which we respond…”Glow Tide!”…Red Elephants 37 Blue Raiders 0
Stephen F. Austin @ #3 TCU: No line.

Lamar @ #4 BAYLOR: No Line.
#5 MICHIGAN STATE (-3 ½) over #7 Oregon: Obviously, this week’s “Game of Da’ Week” and potentially, perhaps one of the season’s “Games of Da’ Year”. Ducks QB Vernon Adams was efficient enough throwing the ball while also helping the ground game roll up 485 against his former team. Not-So-Mean Green D did little to stop Eastern Washington until the 4th Quarter of the 61-42 win. This one also shapes up to be a high-scoring game with Spartans averaging 43 ppg last year and 5th-year senior QB Connor Cook being protected by 4 returning starters on the O-line. Mallards have been good facing ranked opposition, winning and covering 7 of their last 9. Oregon also accounted for 1 of 2 outright loses for State in 2014…MSU 40 Drakes 30

Jacksonville State @ #6 AUBURN: No line.
Idaho (+43) over #8 USC: Best guess for “Wish We Had It Back”. Tater-Heads have given up huge numbers to ranked opponents in the past three years (though faced no Top 25 squads last season). Inebriated and medicated (?) Trojans coach Steve Sarkisian was lambasted for spouting off at the mouth at a preseason alumni function and making disparaging remarks about fellow conference teams. Supporters say Coach was unable to finish his thought that “(those other teams)…they all suck….the life outta’ opposing defenses!” Others in Coach’s corner suggest he was praising rival pass-rushers and meant to say “they sack!”…USC 49 Idaho 9

#9 Notre Dame (-10 ½) over VIRGINIA: LOCK OF DA’ WEEK. Apparently, the linesmakers weren’t moved by Notre Dame’s 35-point win over Texas. Irish are on 2-5 road-fave skid the last two seasons. Leprechauns, while improving scoring from 26 ppg to 33 ppg over the last three years have also been more generous, going from 12.8 points-allowed in 2012 to 29.2 points-allowed in 2014 (…though coughed-up only 3 to Texas). Irish have covered just one of its last four vs. ACC teams, winning just one outright as well and closed 2014 regular season by absorbing 4 straight defeats before edging LSU in the Music City Bowl. Cavs improved nicely on offense and defense last year and went 3-0 getting points in Charlottesville, but return just five starters on each side of the ball…Our Lady 31 Cavs 13
#10 Georgia (-20) over VANDERBILT: Second choice fer “lock”. The good news in Week One for the Commodores? They held a team that scored an average of 44+ points per game last year to…14. The bad news??!! Vandy hit the board for 12 points against a team that allowed nearly 40 per game last year!...Joja’ 42 Admirals 10

South Florida (+27 ½) over #11 FLORIDA STATE: Okay…da’ Bulls saddled I-AA Florida A&M with 51 points last week, but to a team that averaged about 17 ppg in 2014, that has to be encouraging. ‘Noles did not cover a single non-ACC game last year, but Irish transfer Everett Golson got off to a nice start in his new digs, throwing for 300+ yards and four scores while getting plenty of support from his running backs. State visits Boston College next on a short-turnaround…FSU 31 USF 7
Appalachian State @ #12 CLEMSON (“Over 58 ½” ): Tigers 41 Mountaineers 27

UNLV (+28) over #13 Ucla: On paper, Bruins look dominant with 18 starters back from last year’s 10-win squad. In the Rebels’ favor, however, are the facts that UCLA also gave up 28 ppg to opponents and went just 1-3 ATS vs. non-12-PAC teams  last year, and failed to cover vs. Virginia [see our “Black Shirt” item below]) to christen 2015, leading us to quote Bruce Lee in Enter Da’ Dragon…”Clip-boards…don’t hit back.” The hometown heroes had even more problems guarding the red zone, handing over 38 ppg in 2014 and covering just 4 of its last 11 non-conference matches (including NIU, which also recorded 38 points) since the start of 2012! And…what’s the mindset of UNLV, which led for basically three quarters…over a team favored by more than three touchdowns… only to go down to defeat in the final stanza?!...UCLA 38 Rebels 13
#25 MISSISSIPPI STATE (+4) over #14 Louisiana State: If Oregon, who let FCS squad EDUB hit the scoreboard fer 42, turns out to be just a bunch of accessories in Ernie’s bathtub against Michigan State, this one becomes the most-intriguing match-up on the board. Bulldogs ended 2014 losing three of last four games, including bowl match-up with Joja’ Tech, but do welcome back QB Dak Prescott. Bengals played a truckload of true freshmen last year and went 0-3-1 ATS on the road. Outside Prescott not much returning and MSU cost us a “best bet” selection, failing to cover vs. Southern Mist…Bengals 16 Bulldogs 13

#15 GEORGIA TECH (-28 ½) over Tulane: Ramblin’ Wreck 41 Tulane 6
Ball State @ #16 TEXAS A&M (“Under 63”): Aggies 41 Ball State 14

#17 MISSISSIPPI (-28) over Fresno State: Ole Miss 45 Fresno 14
Toledo (+21 ½) over #18 Arkansas (@ Little Rock, AR): Pork Chops 38 Rocket Men 20

#19 Oklahoma @ #23 TENNESSEE (“Over 61”): Vols discovered a big ground game vs. Bowling Green, racking up almost 400 yards. That should come in handy this year vs. the Sooners, who held Rocky Top to 112 yards on 33 totes in last season’s 34-10 win. OK was favored in all four games it played last season vs. members of the Top 25…winning and covering…none of them. The line on this one is “pick ‘em”. We can’t decide either, so we’ll make a call on the total…Tennessee 37 Oklahoma 34
BYU (+2 ½) over #20 Boise State: BYU 23 Broncos 20

#21 Missouri (-11 ½) over ARKANSAS STATE: Tigers 31 Red Wolves 17
NEVADA (+11 ½) over #22 Arizona: UPSET ALERT. Wildcats lost every statistical category vs. UTSA except turnovers and needed two defensive scores to pull out the win. Dr. Saturday reported AZ coach Rich Rodriguez didn’t talk to freshman QB Anu Soloman for two weeks after Fiesta Bowl loss to Boise State. After the mere 10-point shootout victory vs. Texas-San Antonio that cost us a Week One forecast-victory, we ain’t talkin’ to Soloman either…or RichRod for that matter…AZ 28 Reno 24

BTW, we were definitely-amused by a piece of satire published by SB Nation from that involved the K-State Wildcats being dismissed from the conference! Check it out.

This season, the Fightin’ Irish will be the focus of a documentary akin to “Hard Knocks”. We think that’s appropriate given that “Knocks” is a composite of Knute Rockne’s!!!!
“Hooray for Da’ “Little Guy” Part II…in match-ups of FBS vs. ranked-FCS teams this week, we again offer our predictions on upsets that are most-likely, fitty-fitty and won’t happen. Most-Likely: #21 Indiana State @ PURDUE; Fitty-fitty:  #19 Eastern Kentucky @ NC STATE; Won’t: #6 Jacksonville State @ #6 AUBURN and  #13 Liberty @ WEST VIRGINIA. Last week, South Dakota State beat Kansas and Fordham downed Army. Villanova got within 5 of UConn and Y-Town State finished 8 points behind Pitt. Other notable FCS wins over FBS teams include Portland State over Wazzou and North Dakota over Wyoming. Southern Illinois just missed toppling Indiana, falling 48-47.

Piggy-backin’ on our thoughts in Week One about a certain piece in Popular Mechanics (as opposed to Poplar Mechanics, which provides articles about fixing trees…but enough about Stanford and Indiana State!), Vindy’s spies report several bakeries in the Salt Lake City area provided free boxes of cupcakes to Utes-faithful to be lobbed at the Michigan sideline, even at the risk of drawing a flag for un-Mormon-like conduct!
Speakin’ of Pigs, we thank Arkansas for not only bringin’ in a forecast-win, going over the total, but also for ending the game with an exact score of 48-13 over UTEP, as we predicted!

Per Gaming Today contributor Chris Andrews back in May, sleepers this year (based on poor performance last season and returning starters for 2015) include San Jose State, Purdue, FIU and Akron. We liked Purdue and Akron. San Josie and Florida International? Not so much! Spartans crushed FCS #7 New Hampshire (…be afraid UNLV fans!). The Panthers upset Central Florida. The Zips got smoked at Oklahoma (though conference-play looms) and the Boilermakers failed to cover in a 10-point loss to Marshall.
The Alma Mater gave up ten (count ‘em, TEN!) sacks to Temple in the 27-10 loss! Protecting the quarterback was a major issue for Penn State last year too. We didn’t see the game, so we aren’t sure if the problem lies with the O-line or with Christian Hackenberg  or both. In July, in order to provide an ongoing spark under his offense, James Franklin implored the conference media to publish some seriously-unkind things about the O-Line! We think Coach won’t need to prod the media much to get that that article now. In fact, wouldn’t be shocked to see a scathing op-ed piece in the local paper scribed by Franklin himself!

ESPN’s Adam Schefter suggested he knew an NFL punter or long-snapper that carried a paper-clip to deflate footballs on a few occasions. In response, paperclip sales have been banned by the league in any city hosting an pro football team. Manufacturers have countered by making clips too big to fit in the air-holes of a standard-pigskin and attached labels reading “NFL-approved”!
Judge Richard M. Berman, lesser-known brother to Chris Berman, overturned Tom Brady’s suspension last week, settin’ da’ quarterback, back, back, back, back…free to play vs. the Steelers this Sunday!

NBC News anchor Brian Williams recently recanted his story about grabbing the pick in the end zone against Russell Wilson to give the Super Bowl 49 victory to the New England Patriots!
“Wish We Had That One Back”: Yep, we called it…and went against the little voices in our head anyway, choosing Arizona to cover 32 vs. UTSA.

“Locked in a Box?”:  Our selection of the ASU Spun Devils last week was an epic fail and begins the “lock” record at 0-1 (.000).      
Black Shirt (awarded to the team or player(s) whose performance or “performance” grabs us a forecast dubya!): This season’s inaugural ebony tee goes to…Beyonce…because Kanye West believes she deserves it over…Virginia RB Taquan Mitchell, who had 100 receiving yards, including a TD-catch with less than 3:30 to play that allowed the Cavs to cover and bring in a dubya for Vindy! Honorable mention to Western Michigan CB Darius Phillips for a 100-yard kickoff return for a score vs. Michigan State.

Shoppe Talk: Da’ Boomer Shroomers of Oklahoma (0-1, .000) become the first inhabitants of Ye Olde Taxidermy Shoppe of the 2015 campaign , having beaten your fab forecaster now 12 times in the last 16 tries (.250)!
Vindy’s Week 2 Best Bets:  UCONN -7 ½ over Army, Minnesota -6 over COLORADO STATE, Eastern Michigan +13 ½ over WYOMING, San Jose State +7 ½ over AIR FORCE  Last Week: 2-2 (.500) (BTW, we were smart enough to parlay the two winning best bets, Temple +7 and NC State -26, to cash a ticket!)