Weekly disclaimer: In case I have been actually offending people with the content of these posts, every installment of this feature and all the jokes contained within it are simply that—jokes. The humor is intentionally way over the top and I do not mean to actually demean any institution of higher learning. Make no mistake, I want to make you feel bad about your football team at times. However, your degree and the school you attend is always something to be proud of and I certainly would never tell you otherwise in seriousness. Now that we got that out of the way, let’s get to the offensive stuff, shall we?
As a reminder, this is a weekly feature, publishing every Thursday during the season. Matt, Bob and I pick five games each week: the games from each of our schools (Illinois, Northwestern and Miami, respectively) and a couple national games. Anyone is invited to pick with us in the comments and we’ll throw the standings of the peanut gallery up each week. This is the space where a witty sentence about picking games or how I’m better than you or how you won’t win anything through this goes each week. That is all.
Bust out your banjos and moonshine, FSU week is here! And it matters again! For the first time since 2004, the Seminoles and the Hurricanes are both ranked in the Top 10 as they prepare to square off. What does this mean for me? If you guessed that it’s my opportunity to make a bunch of offensive generalizations about Florida State and the students that attend that “academic institution”, you hit the ‘Nole—er, nail—on the head! Programming note: I’ll be heading up to Tallahassee to take this one in live and I’ll file a report about my time there, hopefully posting next Monday. Anyway, on with the classless trashing.
Let’s start with the whole Chief Osceola thing. Let me get this straight: in a day and age where there is an overwhelming tidal wave of backlash crashing towards having a football team with the nickname “Redskins”, people are okay with a white person putting on stereotypical face paint and clothing and planting a flaming spear covered in stereotypical feathers into the middle of the field while 90,000 look on in unquestioned support? And people are also okay with the entire “student” (those that attend Florida State can be only called students in the most liberal sense of the word) section doing the tomahawk chop? Seriously? Am I the only one seeing this? Whatever. I hope those at Florida State really enjoy their communal racism, quality football team and hot girls for the rest of their time at college because they’re going to have a fun time getting a job when they get out!
Turning my short attention span to the game on the field, you wouldn’t know it by the media coverage of this game, but Florida State hasn’t actually beaten Miami yet. The ‘Noles are an overwhelming favorite, as they should be, and as we all know that means Miami has zero chance of winning because a surprising result has never happened in the history of college football. Folks, believe it or not, Miami actually has a mathematical chance to win this football game! Shocking! Count out the underdog in a massive rivalry game at your own risk.
Let’s get onto this week’s rundown of the BCS Top 25. Who’s ranked too high? How about too low? And who did the voters peg correctly? The following is not exact—if a team is within a few spots of where I think they should be I pegged them just right—and is my opinion. If you disagree, feel free to show everyone why you are wrong with your reasoning in the comments. I’d also like to state that my analysis is based of off where a team SHOULD BE RANKED, not how good they are. Without further ado:
The Bob Marley Group (Too high!)
- #4 Ohio State The Buckeyes made a statement last Saturday, but I’ll stick to this…for now.
- #5 Stanford Their best win came against UCLA at home and they lost to Utah. The Oregon game in two weeks will be telling, but for now they’re too high.
- #7 Miami Hard to justify this even for a Miami fan after the past two weeks. This is likely over after Saturday night anyway though.
- #10 Oklahoma The jury’s out on the entire Big 12 right now, so let’s keep these guys out of the Top 10 please.
- #16 Fresno State/#17 Northern Illinois As Bob said last week, “I think both of these teams are pretty good, but it’s a classic WE-NEED-TO-HAVE-NON-AQ-TEAMS-IN-THE-TOP-25-SO-LET’S-JUST-PICK-TWO kind of thing.” Agreed, and they both are pretty bad football teams. Last week Fresno State pretty much lost to San Diego (German for “a whale’s vagina”) State before the Aztecs handed the game to them in OT.
- #18 Oklahoma State They lost to West Virginia. Need I say more? Luckily they’ll probably kick it against Texas Tech this week.
- #21 Michigan I can’t even….uh oh I feel it coming….hold onnnnnnnNNNNNNNN WHY THE %#&@ IS THIS TEAM RANKED?!?!??!?!?!
The Soulja Boy Group (Too low!)
- #19 Louisville Only loss came to a UCF team with a pretty good resume. How can Fresno and NIU be ahead of these guys?
- #20 UCLA Their two losses came to the cream of the cream of the crop (not a typo) in the Pac-12.
- #23 UCF The Knights’ only loss came to a South Carolina team with newfound credibility after last Saturday.
- #24 Wisconsin They’ve played very well in every game this season and only lost to Ohio State on the road in a pretty close game. (No, they don’t have a second loss. Stop it.) [Bob: While I think Stanford is very good, compare Wisconsin. Both one-loss teams. Look at to whom they lost and even their other performances. Now look at their rankings.]
- NR Arizona State How are they not ranked? The Notre Dame loss is ugly, but they but smoked a decent Washington team and their only other loss was to Stanford.
- NR Oregon State The loss to Eastern Washington was a fluke and the Beavers were quite competitive against Stanford last Saturday. I can name at least five teams in the Top 25 that I’d put below Oregon State.
The Goldilocks Group (Just right!)
- #1 Alabama/#2 Oregon/#3 Florida State Anyone debating Oregon vs. FSU at this point in the season needs to take a deep breath and look at the calendar. History indicates that AT LEAST one of them will lose.
- #6 Baylor Should be #4, but I won’t pick nits. They haven’t played anyone yet.
- #8 Clemson/#9 Missouri/#11 Auburn All good one-loss teams.
- #12 Texas A&M/#13 LSU/#14 South Carolina Playing in the SEC week in and week out is not easy.
- #15 Texas Tech Like I said, the jury’s still out on the Big 12 so I have no good idea where those teams should be ranked. The fringe of the Top 15 is fine for now.
- #22 Michigan State Whatever.
- #25 Notre Dame While it may come as a shock to most that I’m not losing my mind over this, they did beat a quality Arizona State team and they’re 6-2. I won’t lose sleep over slipping them in as the last team there.
Moving on to last week’s action, Wake Forest (+22.5) scared the daylights out of Sun Life Stadium and nearly ended Miami’s undefeated season the week before Florida State is going to. Iowa (-4) might have just kept Northwestern from reaching a bowl game. From Matt: Michigan State (-10.5) upended the hopes and dreams of naive Illinois fans, even though rational people could clearly see that there are still too many holes in this team. Also Michigan State is good. Harry again: OOOOOOOOOOOOOOKLAHOMA (-6.5) WHERE THE WIND COMES SWEEPIN’ DOWN THE PLAIN. (Good for you if you got that reference.) And lastly, we all learned to never bet against Oregon (-23) ever again.
I guess I have to show the standings. Guh.
- Bob 25-19-1
- Matt 24-20-1
- Harry 22-22-1
And the peanut gallery! Standings are listed by total wins, not winning percentage.
- Michael W 20-19-1
- Thomas Bechtel 17-12-1
- Creed Tucker 16-24
- Return of the GPAB 11-18-1
- Andrew Kelley 13-16-1
- Arnim “Yep, still at .500 but I totally would be in first place if I had started from Week 1″ Whisler 12-12-1
- Ben Greene 11-18-1
- mdrose16 6-10
- Nik Valdiserri 5-10
- Bobby 0-5 (An inauspicious debut from Bob’s roommate)
Here are the five games for this week. This section is going to be quick this week. As always, the lines come from Vegas Insider and all game times are eastern. Rankings reflect the BCS Standings.
Illinois at Penn State (-10), Noon, ESPN
Maybe both of these teams can pull the other’s pants back up after Michigan State and Ohio State, respectively, pantsed them last Saturday!
Northwestern at Nebraska (-7), 3:30, Big Ten Network
It’s the Two Teams Going Nowhere Fast Bowl!
#21 Michigan at #22 Michigan State (-4.5), 3:30, ABC
WHY THE %#&@ ARE THESE TEAMS RANKED?!?!?
#18 Oklahoma State at #15 Texas Tech (-2.5), 7, FOX
It would be really unfortunate if Texas Tech coach Kliff Kingsbury’s middle name starts with a “K”.
#7 Miami at #3 Florida State (-21.5), 8, ABC
I’ll make these quick because sitting at .500 and coming off an 0-5 week, my analysis doesn’t have much credibility right now. [Bob: Nice comma splice.]
ILL vs PSU This line is at least 3.5 points too low. Penn State -10
NU vs NEB Ditto! Nebraska -7
MICH vs MSU I’m still not sold at all on MSU’s offense. I think they’ll win the game, but I’m not comfortable giving up more than a field goal. Michigan +4.5
OKST vs TTU Oklahoma State is extremely overrated and this week is going to expose that. Texas Tech -2.5
I Need To Get Back Over .500 With My Picks Before I Earn The Right To Do This Thing Again (-110)
MIA vs FSU That’s a lot of points in a rivalry game, but what this pick really comes down to is this: over my dead fucking body am I going to root for those assholes from Tallahassee this week. The _ +21.5
Last Week: 0-5
I’ll start by saying Harry’s last comment indicates that he would be rooting for Florida State if he had picked them on our stupid blog. I guess my not caring at all who I picked is continuing to pay off both in the standings and with my level of happiness in my life. These are really weird picks this week. I don’t like them at all.
ILL vs PSU It’s hard to be confident in either of these teams after last week, but (Sorry, Matt) I may need to abandon my thinking that Illinois is kind of good. [Matt: I mean, I picked MSU to cover last week so I was kind of expecting that beatdown. Illinois is still better than last year.] Matt’s school and my school have killed me the last three weeks. I won’t let that happen again. Penn State -10
NU vs NEB I can’t pick Northwestern again. I’ve done it too many times now and been burned every time. Nebraska -7
MICH vs MSU It’s tough to take a Connor Cook-led team, but just look at this. A little tough giving more than a field goal here, but I like the Spartans here. I also think I’ll be the only one picking against Michigan here, which will make things interesting. Michigan State -4.5
OKST vs TTU Oklahoma State is not good at all; Texas Tech is a solid team, as they proved last week despite their loss. Especially at home, I like the Red Raiders here. Texas Tech -2.5
Harry’s Making Next Week’s DCIAPC the Third Consecutive Week with Miami as the Main Feature (-120) [ED Harry: I barely mentioned Miami. Writeup had much more to do with Florida State.]
My Picking All Favorites This Week (+160)
FSU vs MIA I don’t feel comfortable giving up so many points, but have you seen these two teams play the last two weeks? Florida State -21.5
Last Week: 2-3
Last week was really tough for me, as I went 1-4, my worst mark in a long while. Hopefully this week will be better, but I kinda doubt it.
ILL vs PSU Okay. I know they lost 42-3 last week. Believe me, I know. I believe that result is more due to Michigan State being a talented team that ran up the score on a defeated, depressed squad. Illinois was able to hang with them for the entire first half, trailing 14-3. While this may seem like a standard start to a beatdown, that’s not a good indicator of the competitiveness of the game. Illinois would not have won, but if they had converted a 4th and goal from the 1 and completed a gigantic would-be interception at the end of the first half, they could’ve been up 10-7 at the half and been much more motivated. My point is, this game was a lot more ugly than the distance between the two teams would predict. Illinois fans are all down in the dumps this week, but I think the Illini have a chance to surprise them with a good fight against PSU this weekend. Illinois +10 (Illinois 31, Penn State 35)
NU vs NEB It’s the battle for the right to have your school be abbreviated “NU”! Nebraska has an excellent rushing attack, and Northwestern doesn’t have an excellent anything right now. I think this pretty much turns into a stink-off between two teams. In an ugly game, Nebraska scores some insurance points late to cover the spread. (I’m so tired of betting on Northwestern.) Nebraska -7 (Nebraska 24, Northwestern 14)
MICH vs MSU This is by far the toughest game of the week to predict in my opinion. While Michigan State is a good team with a top 3 defense in the country, Michigan has far more potential to be great on offense. This game should come down to the playcalling by Michigan Offensive Coordinator Al Borges. Borges has cost the Maize and Blue multiple wins over the years by being too stubborn to run a spread-like offense, Michigan’s strength. Last week, Borges gave up following the PSU debacle and shredded a horrible Indiana defense for 63 (!) points and the second-most single game yards in Big Ten history. Wow. If Borges draws up a decent gameplan, I think Michigan has a great shot to win. Unfortunately, I don’t think Borges will be quite good enough, and the offense’s execution will ultimately fail them as it has in the past. Michigan State -4.5 (Michigan State 23, Michigan 17)
OKST vs TTU Without going too in-depth on this one, I just believe Texas Tech is a better team. They also have a dreamy coach in Kliff Kingsbury. Can’t go wrong picking handsome (this is also why I always bet on myself). Texas Tech -2.5 (Texas Tech 35, Oklahoma State 24)
Everyone Mailing in the Random Bet Segment This Week -130
FSU vs MIA FSU = Really good. MIA = Really decent. Florida State -21.5 (Florida State 49 Miami 21)
Last Week: 1-4