College Football

11-15-08 College Football Picks

Another 3-3 week for myself, as my overall record becomes 8-10. I don’t really have much from the excuses department this week. The USC offense didn’t show up to play. The Georgia defense didn’t show up to play. North Carolina continued to prove me wrong. I continue to find success in the Big Ten and Big East. This week there is a huge slate of impressive games that I am really excited about. I promised an SC member a pick between Oklahoma and Texas Tech and will fulfill that promise next week.

As stated in each column before, I will pick an interleague game in each of the “Big Six” conferences using the lines from (I still haven’t received any advertising money from them.) Follow me on my journey into spreads and statistics as I try to get over the .500 mark this week. Conf: ACC
Game: North Carolina @ Maryland
Line: North Carolina -3
Analysis: North Carolina proved me wrong for the second time in three weeks, which is why I will take them this weekend. Say what you will, I have taken a large leap onto the UNC bandwagon. They are for real, and I found this out the hard way. Butch Davis has really turned this team around, and while they do play better at home than on the road, I figure them to turn that trend around this weekend after an impressive victory over Georgia Tech. Maryland has been the overachievers of the ACC this year, but I really don’t feel they can match points with that Tarheel offense. The UNC defense forces too many turnovers and stuffed the Yellow Jacket attack last week. I like North Carolina to pull this one out and continue to draw more people to their ever-growing bandwagon.
Pick: North Carolina -3

Conf: Big 12
Game: Texas @ Kansas
Line: Texas -13
Analysis: Texas is still clicking on all cylinders. They’re putting up points, they’re playing defense, and they’re well coached. Kansas is still a very respectable team, but the problem is they just refuse to play defense. After watching Texas Tech dominate Kansas earlier in the season, I think we will see more of the same from Texas. (The same Texas team that lost on a last second play at Texas Tech.) I love coach Mangino, but in this game his team is just overmatched, as well as his coaching abilities. Mack Brown is still a genious and there is just way too much talent on this Longhorn team for the Jayhawks to match up. A two touchdown victory is more than reasonable for Texas, who is still needing some style points to impress the BCS in case of a three way tie in the Big 12 South. I’ll take the Horns’ in this one.
Pick: Texas -13

Conf: Big East
Game: Connecticut @ Syracuse
Line: Connecticut -10

Analysis: Syracuse is just a god awful football team. I’m sorry to all of you Orange fans, but there are greener pastures. (Basketball season is just around the corner.) Syracuse cannot stop the run and that bodes well for a UCONN team that has one of the strongest rushing attacks in the Big East. Syracuse is also looking ahead to playing a struggling Notre Dame team and I think this game will be downplayed by the Orange players. Bottomline, Syracuse is one of the worst teams in college football and the Huskies still have a bowl game to play for. This game shouldn’t be close as UCONN will squeeze the juice out of the Orange this weekend.
Pick: Connecticut -10

Conf: Big Ten
Game: Purdue @ Iowa
Line: Iowa -17.5
Analysis: After a big upset, teams usually struggle in the following game. That’s what I’m basing this pick on. Purdue’s offense has the ability to put points on the board with newly appointed quarterback Siller. Iowa’s offense isn’t designed to blow teams out. Shonn Greene is a great back, but they move the ball down field slowly, churning out tough yards. I’m not saying there will be an upset in Iowa City this weekend, but I have enough respect for Purdue to keep it within 17 points. Purdue has only lost by more than 17 in one game this season. (Less than 17 at Ohio State and also within 17 against Penn State.) I expect them to keep it close this weekend. My money is on the Boilermakers.
Pick: Purdue +17.5

Conf: SEC
Game: Vanderbilt @ Kentucky
Line: Kentucky -4

Analysis: Kentucky nearly upset Georgia at home this past weekend and new quarterback Randall Cobb is really coming into his own. Unfortunately, the same can’t be said for Vanderbilt. After getting throttled at home and picking up their fourth straight loss, they are forced to travel to Lexington. This now looks like the Vandy team we expect every year. (Decent defense, no offense.) Kentucky proved they can put up points, and after scoring 38 on Georgia I really expect to see more of the same from the Wildcats. They are bowl eligible for the third straight year and seek to move up from the Music City Bowl to the Chik-fil-a Bowl. The Commodores are going to struggle to make a bowl at all. (Even after starting the season 5-0.) Look for the Dores’ to continue their downward spiral in Lexington.
Pick: Kentucky -4

Conf: Pac-10
Game: USC @ Stanford
Line: USC -23

Analysis: I know I complain about it every week, but I really cannot stress how depressing it is to pick a game from this conference. So I will go with the only team that really matters in USC. They have won for me two out of the last three weeks and I will ride them again at Stanford. I really respect Harbaugh and the program he is developing at Stanford, but the Trojans are looking for revenge. The Cardinal ruined the Trojans championship hopes last season and I think Pete Carroll will have his team coming in their with a chip on their shoulder. USC needs style points for the BCS and did just that against lowly Washington State and Washington. They are seeking blowout wins and will look to do just that in Northern Cali Saturday night. I will once again ride USC as they are heads and shoulders above Stanford in terms of talent level.
Pick: USC -23

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