Welcome back to Don’t Call It A Picks Competition, our weekly column where Matt, Bob and Harry pick five college football games against the spread and make appalling jokes at pretty much everyone’s expense. As always, you’re invited to pick with us in the comment section, and we’ll post the standings each week.
Matt Silich’s Fake DCIAPC Sponsor of the Week (Not TM)
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Looks like Matt is particularly relishing the working life today! In other uplifting news, the SEC is quite bad. It’s been trending this way for a while now but it’s now readily apparent to all observers that outside of Alabama’s relentless death machine and a surprisingly tough Georgia outfit coming together quite well in Kirby Smart’s second year (and maybe Auburn), the SEC is complete trash. (Hello, LSU! Congrats on that buyout for Ed Orgeron!)
In lieu of a full column this week as we are all smashed with work from our real jobs (being a working stiff for just five months has allowed me to better understand why most people in my generation like the loonbag socialist who just promises that everything will be free), here is a list of things that are better than the SEC:
-The United States Men’s National Soccer Team
-Donald Trump’s empathy
-The NFL’s public relations
-The year 2016
-The movie Cars 2
-Okay maybe Cars 2 was too harsh
-On second thought, no it’s not too harsh
-Customer service at the DMV
-The pace of baseball
-An education from Arizona State University
-The male-to-female ratio in China
-The NCAA’s integrity
-Hillary Clinton’s email practices
-Mark Mangino’s diet
-Ringo Starr’s post-Beatles material
-Okay that was way too far for every team except Tennessee, I apologize to everyone aside from the Vols
-The final season of How I Met Your Mother
We have a tie at the top of the standings after last week!
A quick look at the splits:
|We All Agree||8-7|
In the Peanut Gallery, greenmonstersite keeps running away with this damn thing. He checked in with his worst week of the season last week and still managed to go 3-2. God help us all (and go Astros this week!).
|Winning Percentage||2017 Record||Last Week|
Here is this week’s slate of games:
#4 Penn State (-14.5) at Northwestern, Noon, ABC
Harry: Seems like the INTELLIGENTSIA has firmly accepted Penn State as the capital-F Frontrunner in the Big Ten and I have not seen enough hard evidence to accept this conclusion. That said, they’ll probably beat Northwestern by at least 15 points. Penn State -14.5
Matt: I’m mad at Northwestern. They were all ready to lay down and die a slow death against Buckminster Fuller last week, then things went completely off the rails and the Wildcats actually had a shot to send the game to overtime before Future NFL Starter Apparently Clayton Thorson failed to throw the ball away in his own endzone on like second down of a do-or-die drive. He’s really good and also smart, folks. Anyway, this damn Northwestern team always seems to be the hardest for me to pick, and I frankly just want to give up. Give me Penn State, because I don’t anticipate Jerk McKillMe to throw as many picks as Alex Hornibabblingbrook did last week. Penn State -14.5
Bob: I see this one being a bit of an 11 AM slopfest in Evanston, particularly if the weather forecast holds up. For not any particular reason (HOMECOMING AT RYAN FIELD!!!), I think Northwestern will sort of hang in there score-wise but not come close to winning, so I’ll take the two touchdowns. Northwestern +14.5
Illinois at Iowa (-18), Noon, BTN
Harry: Illinois has burned me too many times this year, but I just can’t stop resisting massive amounts of points against mediocre teams. Ugh +18
Matt: Iowa’s front seven is going to absolutely terrorize the Illini, even with the newfound threat of actually passing the ball with promoted starting quarterback Jeff George Jr. Frankly, I hope third-stringer Cam Thomas gets a few snaps. Why not? The only thing that gives me some pause here is how the Illinois defense has generally buckled down against pro-style units, but it’s not enough to stop me from picking the Hawkeyes. The Children of the Stead Family Children’s Hospital -18
Bob: Iowa’s offense is pretty bad, but after putting my faith in Illinois covering the spread against okay-to-decent teams the last two weeks, I refuse to do so again. Iowa -18
#13 Miami (-3) at Florida State, 3:30, ESPN
Harry: The advanced stats still like Florida State a little bit on paper, but that is not factoring in the loss on DeAndre Francois. In terms of the eye test and how the teams have performed on the field this year, all signs point to a Miami victory. Considering how this rivalry has gone over the past almost-decade I am very much expecting the worst, but rationally it is hard to justify an FSU pick here. Miami -3
Matt: Come on. No, like, come onnnn. Come on. There’s no way Miami could blow this opportunity, right? I mean, even given that Florida State is going to punch well above its weight here (because rivalry game, throw out the records, etc.), there’s no WAY that Miami can blow this one. Right? Right?? Hello??? Miami -3
Bob: Florida State’s best performance this year was a home loss to NC State, but it’s hard to completely give up on them after such high expectations entering the season, even with the Francois injury. We still know very little about Miami, though the performance at Duke this past week was quite impressive. Fun fact: Miami has not beaten Florida State since the Vietnam War. There are some weird factors concerning weather this weekend and the game will (probably) be played in Tallahassee, but this looks to be the near-perfect scenario for Miami to pull it off. Miami -3
#23 West Virginia at #8 TCU (-13), 3:30, FOX
Harry: This is such a tough pick I literally just flipped a coin (not joking). TCU -13
Matt: TCU is one of the very few teams (like, 6 of them) I have officially given my stamp of approval as #good this season. I want to pick West Virginia, but I also scoreboard-watched as Kansas clawed back to a 35-27 deficit heading into the fourth quarter against WVU, on the back of a 291-yard (!!!) rushing effort by KU stud Khalil Herbert (also the starting back in my current NCAA 14 online dynasty, and a Heisman contender). Given the Stay Puft nature of WVU’s schedule, I’ll take the Horny Froggies. Horny Froggies -13
Bob: West Virginia has followed up a loss to Virginia Tech with the easiest three-game stretch imaginable (two bottom-ten teams and an FCS school). I was all ready to confidently pick TCU here, but this spread is quite steep. I still like the more talented and better coached Horned Frogs to win big at home. TCU -13
Michigan State at #7 Michigan (-11), 7:30, ABC
Harry: Considering the strength of Michigan’s defense against a suspect Spartan offense, if John O’Korn can play even 60-70% as well as he did against Purdue, Michigan will cover. I’ll take that bet. Michigan -11
Matt: I hate this line so, so much. But I always seem to pick Michigan in these games, and they never come through for me. I’m sure this’ll be the first time they would have. SPARTACUS +11ACUS [Ed Harry: Please note that JUST TWO WEEKS AGO, Matt picked Michigan -9.5 against Purdue and the Wolverines covered with a touchdown to spare.] [Ed Matt: To clarify, by “these games” I meant specifically Michigan-Michigan State games. I bet I’ve never picked Sparty to cover in our four years of doing this, and I’ve coincidentally never won the bet because Michigan hasn’t covered this game since 1671, also coincidentally the birth year of most of their attending fans at the Big House.]
Bob: No love lost throw the record books out the window for this one folks. Couple that semi-facetious factor with this spread being big for a team that still has a lot to prove offensively… but Michigan simply looks a lot better than Michigan State. The Spartans will struggle to score on Michigan’s second-ranked defense, which comes off a bye week. One or two too many favorites on steepish spreads for my liking this week, but I lean that way on each individual pick. Can’t wait for another losing week! Michigan -11
Remember to leave your picks in the comments!