California Golden Bears vs Washington Huskies Free Pick

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California Golden Bears vs Washington Huskies Free Pick: Coming into the season, the Cal Bears boasted one of the best running backs in the nation, if not the best. But Jahvid Best had a scary injury, and hasn’t played in quite some times. The interesting part of that scenario is that the Bears rushing attack hasn’t really suffered. In fact, I think the offensive line is blocking better, and overall, the Bears are a more efficient offense now that they aren’t relying on their stud running back.

That spells trouble for the Huskies. I’ve been pretty much dead on with the Huskies this year, I know them well. I know who they should play well against, I know who they struggle against. I’ve said all along that if you can fully commit to running the ball against UW then you can win easily. I think the Golden Bears can and will do that.

Not only are they the better team, and pose a tough match-up for the Huskies defense, but the Bears are playing their best football of the season. After struggling mightily against good teams, the Bears have beaten Arizona and Stanford back to back. And they’ve had two weeks to prepare for the University of Washington. I know Husky stadium is loud but I don’t know how long it will be that way.

If you look at stats, you’ll see that the Bears do just about everything more effectively than the Huskies. Stats, the way I feel, the moon alignment – I have everything going for me here. I think the Bears win 38-21 in Seattle.

California Golden Bears (-6) @ Washington Huskies

Washington State Cougars vs Washington Huskies Free Pick

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Washington State Cougars @ Washington Huskies (-24) Free Pick: Listen, I have a hard time giving the Huskies 24 points, against almost anyone, but not so much the worst team in college football. Maybe I’m being a little hard on the Cougars from Washington State, I mean, I know a couple kids on the team, and they are good guys, they just can’t compete with the rest of the Pac-10. I think they might have 3 wins if they played in the Western South Pacific Poison Ivy League – but they haven’t proven they can play with anyone in the Pac-10. And I can’t think that this huge rivalry game, the famous Apple Cup, will bring them all the way from doormat to competitive team.

But they give up 39.3 points per game, not because they wouldn’t give up more, but because the game is only so long, and when teams rarely score in the 4th quarter because they are just trying to finish the game, it’s hard to score much more than 40. The Cougars have given up at least 40 points in their last 5 games. I’ve hear of high school teams getting done in like that, but a Pac-10 team? Here’s the thing, the Cougars might be petitioning to get into that WSPPIL that I was talking about earlier, are they really Pac-10-ish? Every other team in the league is competitive – the closest Pac-10 game the Cougars have played was against Arizona State – they lost by just 13 with a late 4th quarter score – amazing game for them.

I know the Cougars have won 4 of their last 5, and are currently on their longest winning streak over the Huskies(2 games), and I know the Huskies have lost each of thier last 4 games, getting blown out in two, but at least they’ve competed all year long. They’ve blown games on the field, they’ve blown games on the sidelines, but they’ve played and hung in against some good teams, and I think they blow out the Cougars – somewhere in the 42-13 range – and that’s enough for a cover. The Dawgs win and they win BIG!

Free NCAA and NBA Basketball Picks: Friday Night

NCAA Hoops Picks:

Morehead State Eagles (+21) @ Kentucky Wildcats: I know Kentucky got their new coach and a bunch of prized recruits, but this Morehead State team is resilient. They return 4 starters form a year ago, and while they lost a key player in Senior, Leon Buchanan, they have some solid players that have played well against big time competition. Better yet, this team fights, they lost 2 games by more than 20 points last season. The first was just an off night in the 2nd game of the season against Vanderbilt, the 2nd was to Louisville. In the NCAA tournament last season, the Eagles lost by 20 to that same Louisville team. I expect it to take the Wildcats a few games to mesh, and while I fully expect them to win, it wouldn’t surprise me if this one is much closer than 20.

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Wright State Raiders @ Washington Huskies (-14): I just think UW’s overall size and athleticism is too much for the Raiders. It might stay close for a while, but with the way UW gambles and runs the floor, a five point lead could turn into twenty in just a few minutes. Wright State does return 4 starters from last year’s team that finished the season much better than they started. UW loses Justin Dentmon and Jon Brockman, two key cogs in the Huskies success a year ago, but Dentmon’s services will be replaced by fantastic freshman Abdul Gaddy, and Brockman’s absence will only allow the Huskies to run the floor more against lesser teams. UW is long enough to rebound at all positions. I haven’t even talked about Isiah Thomas yet – the sophomore was awesome in his first season with the Huskies, and I only expect him to be better this time around.

NBA Hoops:

Atlanta Hawks (+9) @ Boston Celtics: The first game in ESPN’s double header seems like a great bet. The Hawks are one of the better teams in the East, they play good defense, and this game has definitely turned into a rivalry after a tough playoff match-up. This game is often a close one, finishing 6 points or closer in 5 of the last 8 contests. The road team has won 8 of the last 10, Atlanta has won 3 of the last 5 in Boston. Both teams are coming off a free day. Should be a good one.

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L.A. Lakers @ Denver Nuggets (-3): Gotta like Denver tonight, they haven’t played very well lately, but get the benefit of coming off a long road trip early in the season, and getting to play at home. Whew, what a load off. L.A. didn’t have a real tough game against Phoenix last night, but they still played, and they still are missing their second best player. The Lakers have a chance, of course, they have Mr. Bryant, but I like the Nuggets’ chances. This is the late game on ESPN Friday Night Basketball.

Washington Huskies vs Oregon State Beavers Prediction

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Washington Huskies @ Oregon State Beavers (-11) Prediction: I got this game at 11, it has moved to 12, but the points shouldn’t matter here. Oregon brought it to the Dogs, smacking them around in fine 43-19 fashion (and it wasn’t that close) and I expect the Beavers to do something similar to that. Teams that fully commit to running the ball against UW just embarrass the Dawgs. I basically think the Beavers, in their home stadium, are the Huskies worst nightmare.

Jake Locker may get all the hype, and he may be the more elite pro prospect, but Sean Canfield has impressed me more this season. Jake is a physical freak, one of the more impressive athletes I’ve seen play the QB position, but Sean is super accurate, completing 70% of this passes on the season. He has a very calm pocket presence and hangs in to make the big throw. He doesn’t make mistakes, mainly because he’s so accurate, and is basically the ideal quarterback to lead a dominating running attack like OSU has. But I don’t even know if Canfield will matter much in this game – I truly think the Beavers could hand the ball off every single play and win by two touchdowns.

The Huskies have lost 5 of their last 6 games after beating USC. The Beavers have won 4 of their last 5 after losing by five to Arizona. The Beavers’ only losses have come against USC, Cincinnati (both in close games), and Arizona. But it’s not about who they’ve played, but how these two match-up. Like Oregon, the Beavers are a nearly impossible match-up for the Huskies.

College Football Free Picks Review: Week 10

9-3-1: You have to like slamming home 75% of your bets – this was my best college week of the year. I had previously thought college ball to be a little easier than the NFL, but the start to the season has been 50/50 and it was nice to get a big week out of my College picks. It was a big week for all my picks, winners everywhere! Here’s the review!

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Bowling Green Falcons (+3.5) @ Buffalo Bulls: (WINNER) “I just think Bowling Green plays well on the road. They lost to Missouri and Marshall away from home, 7 points separated them in each loss. They recently won at Kent State, be it by just a single point, before beating Ball State by two touchdowns on the road. They’ve done this all through the air, using their passing attack to efficiently move the ball and create big plays. The Bowling Green Falcons have out-passed every opponent outside of Boise State so far this season. Now, they have been out-rushed in almost every game, so they definitely go how their passing attack goes.”

So their passing attack didn’t really hit the gold until the 4th quarter, but that was enough for Bowling Green as they snaked out another one-point win this season. They couldn’t run the ball, but when it came down to it, they sure could throw it. A big stop late gave the Falcons a chance, and they cashed it in. Big win to start the week!

Miami (Ohio) Redhawks (+14) @ Temple Owls: (WINNER) “Alright, it’s your lucky day, the Redhawks have moved from a 13 point dog to open, to a 14 point dog when I made my pick, to a 17 point dog right now. That’s a huge move, and it might be because 67% of the public likes the Owls. It also might be because the Redhawks have their fair share of injuries while Temple is basically injury free, healthy as a night owl, if you will. It also might be because people are realizing Miami’s 1-8 record to start the season. You could say they are the favorite. But 14 points? (17 points for you if you’re betting now)? The Owls haven’t been a two touchdown favorite since 2001. Now, they covered in that game, but as you can see it has been a long time. It’s almost 2010.”

The Redhawks made it tough on me, waiting until the last quarter of each half to get their game right. After 19 straight and unanswered points to grab the lead late in the 4th, Temple hit a last second field goal to secure the win. What a game of swings. I still got my win, though, and I know you got yours. Nobody said it would be easy, but the points were too much for a team that hadn’t been a big favorite in, well, just under forever.

Purdue Boilermakers (+4) @ Michigan Wolverines: (WINNER)  “Luckily for you, this spread has made a change for the better since Monday Night when I made my selection. I have the Boilermakers at +4 but they are already getting +6 at almost every book. Still, 75% of the public likes Michigan to cover at home in this one. Fortunately, I think the public is confused, and the man is happy as a clam at high tide about the whole thing. See, the public (or so I guess) sees 5-4 Michigan hosting 3-6 Purdue, and they think, “favored by less than a touchdown, give me that football powerhouse, Michigan” – but that’s where they’re all wrong. Sure, the Wolverines got the Fighting Irish when they were on the other side of that luck thing, and that was a good win. But their other four wins have come against less than stellar competition, Delaware State, Western and Eastern Michigan, and good old Indiana. How’s that 5-4 resume looking now? And Michigan has really struggled lately, losing 4 of their last 5, including a beat down last week at the hands of Illinois, of all teams. Purdue may have 6 losses, and on any given day they can play like piss, but aside from last week, they’ve been very competitive against some pretty good teams. Purdue has lost by more than a touchdown just twice this season, losing to Notre Dame and Oregon by 5 points combined. They got kicked around last week by Wisconsin, but that puts them in a good place to come out and fight hard against Michigan. I’ll take Purdue, the better team of the two.”

A lot of you thought I was full of it when I labeled Purdue the better team of the two – but I’m not looking so silly now am I? Neither team is what one would call good, but Purdue’s tough schedule makes them an interesting team to look at every week, while Michigan’s patty-cake start has them close to aut0-fade status.

Washington Huskies (+4.5) @ UCLA Bruins: (WINNER)  “The public actually slightly likes Washington in this one, and that kind of surprises me, but I’m proud of them, maybe they see what I see. I see that UCLA has a pretty good defense, but they can’t get anything working on offense. They have quarterbacks that can’t seem to step into any throws, and a rushing attack that doesn’t produce much. They’ve been out-rushed in each of their last 5 games, all losses. Washington can play with any team that can’t efficiently run the ball, or won’t commit to running the ball early and often, and in all those cases they are a good bet to cover.”

The Huskies managed to lose this game, but that’s what the Huskies do. They covered the spread nicely though, and that’s the perfect recipe for me. After all, it’s not like I need a win to get a win, you know? And one for the public! Go team!

Oregon Ducks @ Stanford Cardinal (+5.5): (WINNER) “Stanford is one of the best teams in the Nation that nobody knows about. What does that mean to you? It means they are a great bet. They’ve had a couple tough losses over the last three games, going just 1-2 during that stretch. But this spread is not right. First of all, it’s even better (for Stanford side) now than it was when I made the pick. The Cardinal are now getting a full touchdown at home. They are a physical team that matches up well with Oregon, and the Ducks are just coming off a huge emotional high after upsetting the Trojans. Regardless, the value is in Stanford’s corner. Andrew Luck is a very good quarterback that nobody knows. The Cardinal have a very physical offense line that should give Oregon’s defense lots of trouble. Both these teams run the ball very well, Stanford doesn’t have as many big plays, but they get first downs, shorten games, and end up on top more often than not.”

It was what I thought it was. They were who I thought they were. And nobody let anybody off the hook. The Cardinal came out and did what they do. They ran the ball with great success, as Toby Gerhart got the ball 38 times, rushing his team to victory with 223 yards and three touchdowns. Both teams did their thing, and Oregon tried to fight hard late to get the win, but they came up just short in stopping Gerhart, and a late field goal by Stanford sealed the deal. The Cover was rarely in question, as Oregon couldn’t stop Stanford’s powerful run game, and QB, Andrew Luck was solid as usual.

Kansas Jayhawks (-3) @ Kansas State Wildcats: (LOSS) “64% of the gambling public agrees with me, they’re taking Kansas. Not the greatest feeling when you’re betting on a team that has lost 5 straight against the spread yet they’re still getting public love, but it is what it is.” Yeah, so, like I said, not the greatest feeling. The Wildcats pretty much shut Kansas down from the get go. A 2nd quarter touchdown and a very late field goal made it a 7 point game, but K State didn’t really make any mistakes, and Kansas wasn’t good enough to create for themselves. Missed this one.

Illinois Illini (+7) @ Minnesota Golden Gophers: (WINNER)  “Once again, I love these late season games where 2-6 teams that have struggled but are still better than 5-4 teams finally get a chance to try and make things right. I’m a strong believer that when Illinois travels to Minnesota to play the Gophers, that’s exactly the type of game they’ll be playing. Illinois has stunk this year, no doubt about it. But despite their stinking, they had lost 3 games by two touchdowns or less before beating the piss out of Michigan last week, 38-13. That was their second straight win against the spread, and probably the first game they played up to their talent level.”

The Illini continued to play the football many expected them to be running from the beginning. I had this was spot on, as Illinois looked like the much better team from the get-go. I wonder why it took so long, but no matter, hopefully they continue getting good numbers from the books.

Navy Midshipmen @ Notre Dame Fighting Irish (-11): (LOSS)  “I normally don’t think much of Notre Dame’s chances to cover double digit spreads. They play heaps of close games, are greatly overrated, and spend way too much time throwing the ball, which, if you’ve noticed, is a good way not to cover spreads against lesser teams. Now, Navy is a run-centered team, they hardly ever throw the ball and use the ground and pound style to shorten the game and get tough yards. That’s good for covering double digit spreads as well.”

Why in the hell I just ignored this is beyond me. I know, the QB injury, well he played and he ran – 31 times for 100+ yards, and while his yards per carry weren’t much, that grind it out styled kept the Irish off the field. That Notre Dame defense couldn’t stop anything the Midshipmen ran at them. It was glorious. What did I learn here? A couple things; 1 – ever if I pick Notre Dame, I love it when they lose. And 2 – I need to listen to myself, and when I have an overrated favorite with many reasons to go against them, I definitely need to follow that reasoning!

Virginia Tech Hokies @ East Carolina Pirates (+13): (PUSH) This was a push. What more is there to say? The reasons I went with the Pirates were there. The reasons I should have gone with the Hokies were there. It was a push. I hate ’em, but they rear their ugly heads from time to time. The Hokies really shut down that Pirate offense, putting their offense in good places to succeed. They rarely did, but a late field goal was enough to push. Blast!

Nevada Wolf Pack (-12.5) @ San Jose State Spartans: (WINNER) This one wasn’t even as close as I thought it could be. Nevada dominated from the coin flip, what can you say, tails never fails! It was nice to get a big Sunday win to top off a very nice week. Yay us! Winning is good! How close was this? San Jose scored their first points in the 4th. Four Nevada players rushed for at least 112 yards, 5 rushed for at least 1 touchdown. Believe it.

LSU Tigers @ Alabama Crimson Tide (-8.5): (WINNER) I definitely was sweating this one out. The Crimson Tide had to ride a 2nd 4th quarter comeback to cover my spread, and they did it just by the slimmest of margins. Those half points can certainly come in handy from time to time. If you got this game late, you likely had a little more room to spare, but you still needed that last push from the Tide. I’m sure glad we got it!

Boise State Broncos (-20.5) @ Louisiana Tech Bulldogs: (LOSS) What should have mattered to me here was Louisiana Tech’s solid play to start the season, especially when going up against big favorites. Boise State did enough to win, and it looked like an easy cover after the first half, but the Bulldogs came out fighting like, well, bulldogs, and they made the Broncos sweat it out a bit indeed. This was one of a couple losses on the day, and it could have gone either way.

Oregon State Beavers (+7) @ California Golden Bears: (WINNER)”This one is a little weird to me, because when you break down these two teams, I think it’s overwhelming that the best team between the two is Oregon State. I know the Beavers are on the road in this one, but they’ve played well away from Beaver-town this season, losing by a score to USC and beating up ASU outright. They’ve only lost to good teams like USC, Cincinnati, and Arizona. Cal’s wins are unimpressive, that’s the bottom line. The best team they’ve beaten is either Arizona State or Minnesota – maybe UCLA?”

If you watched the game you saw that Oregon State was better, everywhere. It didn’t help the Bears when their best player had to be carted off the field (Jahvid Best was released from the hospital with a concussion, but it looked bad). The Beavers didn’t have that feared rushing attack working at it’s best in the first half, but with Canfield completing just under 75% of his passes, taking advantage of the Bears shaky defense, the Beavers were running the show in Cali, just as I imagined.

Washington Huskies vs UCLA Bruins Free NCAA Pick

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Washington Huskies (+4.5) @ UCLA Bruins Free NCAA Pick: The public actually slightly likes Washington in this one, and that kind of surprises me, but I’m proud of them, maybe they see what I see. I see that UCLA has a pretty good defense, but they can’t get anything working on offense. They have quarterbacks that can’t seem to step into any throws, and a rushing attack that doesn’t produce much. They’ve been out-rushed in each of their last 5 games, all losses. Washington can play with any team that can’t efficiently run the ball, or won’t commit to running the ball early and often, and in all those cases they are a good bet to cover.

Both teams are 3-5 coming into this game, and a loss here, for either team, makes a bowl game improbably if not impossible. The Huskies have some things working against them: away from that very loud home crowd, they are just 1-7 ATS in their last 8. Also, the Huskies are just 2-10 ATS in their last 12 games against UCLA. But the Bruins have some bad shine as well, they are just 9-26-1 ATS in their last 36 games against teams with losing records. They have trouble beating up on, or just beating in general, teams that they are supposed to beat.

The Huskies have a long list of injuries that includes one of their best defensive players (LB, E.J. Savannah) and their best player on the team (QB, Jake Locker), but Jake is expected to play, but E.J. is not. Most of the players are listed as questionable, but from what I here are expected to be okay by game time. Washington hasn’t played since October 24th, after getting last week off, and should be well prepared for the Bruins.

Oregon Ducks vs Washington Huskies Free NCAA Pick

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Oregon Ducks (-8.5) @ Washington Huskies: I’d love to think the Huskies were a good bet at +8-10 at home, wait, who am I kidding, they passed on recruiting me, still a little bitter, I love betting against the Dogs. But they’ve been tough to go against, definitely. They play close with everyone and possess one of the best players in the Nation, quarterback Jake Locker. But they struggle stopping the run, and Oregon thrives running the ball. I don’t think the Huskies are strong enough up from to stop the Ducks from doing anything. While UW will surely put up a few big plays, and score some points, if they can’t stop the Ducks, no amount of big plays will be enough to cover this one.Like Stanford, the Ducks won’t be tricked into throwing the ball. They will pound it on the ground, thus dominating the Huskies up front. I like the road favorites here, there D has improved a ton over the last 4-5 weeks.

Free College Football Picks: Week 3

My free college football picks of the week are looking like a high-win group. There are some lines that get me real excited for my first big winner of the season, and since I’m 4 games down (because of my 3-7 Week 1 effort), I’m more than ready to get in the green. Follow my NCAA picks from Thursday Night Football’s action to Saturday afternoon. I snapped out 11 picks this week, because, well, I thought I had 10 picks, ended up counting wrong, and didn’t feel like deleting one of my previews: a win for you no doubt… Big winner, big winner!

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Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets @ Miami Hurricanes (-4.5): When a lower rated team is favored, I like the odds. I think Miami has a ton of ability. The players coming into that school are fast, physical, NFL bodied type guys. I am impressed with the Techies this year, no doubt, they have a solid rushing attack and one of the best runners in the NCAA’s. However, I don’t think GT played very well last week, and they still got the win, yet another situation I like to bet against.

Boston College Eagles @ Clemson Tigers (-6.5): The Tigers showed me a lot last week covering against Georgia Tech despite getting done in by 2 freakish fake field goal scores in the first quarter. They fought back to a tie after being down 21-0. They are a good team with strong lines on both sides. The Eagles don’t do much for me, and despite these two teams fighting good battles in the past, I think this one will be pretty one-sided.

Tulsa Golden Hurricane (+15) @ Oklahoma Sooners: Tulsa is pretty solid. They will play tough defense and keep the Sooners on their toes. Oklahoma should win this game, but it will be tough. The injuries and question marks still surround the Sooners.

Middle Tennessee State Blue Raiders (+6) @ Maryland Terrapins: The Blue Raiders have looked solid in their start to the season while the Terps have looked dismal. This spread should be smaller, yet 71% of the public is still riding the slow moving Terps. I think Maryland falls to the small school Blue Raiders. They just haven’t played well enough to win games, and nothing seems to be getting answered in Maryland.

USC Trojans @ Washington Huskies (+20.5): If you don’t count last season, because, well, the Huskies were a joke, then you have to admit the Huskies have played the powerful Trojans well over the last couple years. In ’06 the Huskies lost by 6 as a 19 point dog. In ’07 the Dogs lost by just 3 as an 18.5 point dog. This year I got the Huskies as a 20.5 point dog, and I’m pretty excited about it. They have a tough offense with a stellar athlete/leader at the quarterback position. They have a coaching staff that is very knowledgeable when it comes to the Trojans. I like the Dogs’ chances to cover here.

Arizona Wildcats (+5.5) @ Iowa Hawkeyes: The Hawkeyes don’t look ready for the Cats. Arizona is one of the better unknown teams in the Pac 10, and the Hawkeyes have played nobody thus far. Arizona hasn’t really had a powerful schedule either, and they are not the best traveling team in the world, but Central Michigan was a pretty good win, a better team than the Hawkeyes. I think AZ’s defense holds the Hawkeyes under two scores, making this an easy cover for the Cats.

SMU Broncos (-7) @ Washington State Cougars: Fade the Cougars. ‘Nough said.

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Cincinnati Bearcats @ Oregon State Beavers (EVEN): The Bearcats destroyed Rutgers, then took care of a low-level high school team… Ergh, I mean small division team. Tony Pike is looking good, finally living up to some hype for the Cats, but does that mean they can handle Jacquizz Rodgers? I don’t think so. Rodgers has a question mark by his name, ankle ding, but I think he plays, and I think he rumbles. The Beavers have looked pretty damn god since half way through last season, and they came back to oust a tough UNLV team in Vegas last week. I think they are more battle tested, I think that gives them the slight advantage.

Florida State Seminoles @ BYU Cougars (-7): I think Florida State is athletic, but I still think people aren’t giving the Cougars their due. They have a tough match-up this week, one of their toughest opponents for the rest of the season, but I think the Cougars do too many of the little things right to be caught up in trouble against FSU. They’ll run the ball more this week, that should open up some looks downfield for one of the better college quarterbacks in all the land. I’ll take BYU at home, because how out of place will the FSU kids feel in freaking Utah anyway?

Georgia Bulldogs @ Arkansas Razorbacks (-1): I like taking the lesser ranked favorite, and the Razorbacks opened up at exactly that. This is a well coached squad with some very good players, and they are getting stronger every game. They haven’t made much noise since McFadden and Felix Jones left town, but I think they oust the higher ranked Bulldogs at home this week.

Hawaii Rainbow Warriors @ UNLV Runnin’ Rebels (-7): Don’t get fooled by Hawaii’s dominance over the Pac 10’s own WSU Cougars last week, there’s a reason why I tell you to fade the Cougars. But the Rebels are good, they do lots of things well and have an experienced team looking to win games. They should have got the W last week, and this week it will happen, in relatively easy fashion.

NCAA Free Picks REVIEW: Week 3

I started the week 1 game under .500 but by the time Baylor rolled up Washington State I was actually even to start Saturday’s games. I had 17 games this week behind the DirecTV GamePlan picks and my other 7 games – this is how all 17 went down. With one game postponed (texas/arkansas) I put up a 12-4-1 record this week, losing a couple close ones and pretty much dominating the books in Week 3 – so far this season I’m 7 games over .500. Yhatzee. Stay tuned for next week, here’s this week’s review…

Washington State Cougars @ Baylor Bears (+2): (WINNER) “Rule of thumb for 2008 college football season: If the Washington State Cougars are ever favored, make sure to bet against them. More so, if the Cougars are on the road and favored, first make sure they are playing against, at the very least, a division 2 program or greater. If they indeed are, say Baylor for example, go ahead and pick against the Cougars and feel 99% safe about your bet.” Did I say 99%? I meant 100%. This was like buying a stock that had a 100% chance of doubling. Basically, it was a nice little bet.

Michigan Wolverines (pk) @ Notre Dame Fighting Irish: (LOSER) “Free Money!!! Hooray! Come one, come all, take the Wolverines and watch your account grow in funds.” Well, you can’t win them all right? I was almost as sure about this game as I was about the Baylor Bears. This just shows ya, even a guy on a nice little September weekend run can miss one from time to time. The Irish got me again!

Georgia Bulldogs (-7) @ South Carolina Gamecocks: (PUSH) Interesting and boring game. I don’t know how Coach Spurrier does it, but the guy was 1 goal line fumble away from tying this game up – unbelievable. Luckily for me the Bulldogs ended up covering despite getting equalled by the Gamecocks. Spurrier’s a tough guy to figure out, that’s for sure, unless he’s coaching in the NFL of course, then he’s a nice guy to bet against.

Rice Owls @ Vanderbilt Commodores (-7): (WINNER) “How can you not like it? Vandy has finally won me over, maybe just in time for them to crush my soul? Nan. Vandy plays tough defense, something the Owls haven’t faced in quite some time. Rice gives up a lot of points, something Chris Nickson and the track team skill positions in Vandy will take advantage of.” The Commodores outscored the Owls by 21 in the 2nd half, shutting Rice’s offense out completely. The final score was 38-21 as Rice just couldn’t match the Commodore’s speed.

Oklahoma Sooners (-20) @ Washington Huskies: (WINNER) “Free money!!! Thank you for scheduling this game so I could win free money. I am taking all the money in my accounts and putting it on the Sooners – at least if I get this one wrong I’ll lose it all. That’s right – my big risk and yours, should result in a big payoff. You think the Sooners are going to leave this game up to Pac-10 officials? Haha… Not after Oregon. Not after the call last week against Jake Locker. Sooners by 40. Free Money.” 55-14, Sooners by 41, not 40. I hate when I get it wrong by a point. The Sooners could have taken this game by 70, but they decided to grind it out and sit their starters in the 4th quarter. What does a one man team look like? Ask Jake Locker. I hope you took your free money!

Ohio State Buckeyes @ USC Trojans (-10): (WINNER) The Buckeyes were trounced and no, Beanie Wells wouldn’t have done anything about it. USC dominated this from the get go, as they were obviously the better team. This surely makes USC a favorite to win the NCAA Title.

UNLV Runnin’ Rebels (+23) @ Arizona State Sun Devils: (WINNER) Well, UNLV just touched up the home team Sun Devils for a HUGE upset, and I had all those points to play with. You can bet I loved this one.

Wisconsin Badgers @ Fresno State Bulldogs (+1.5): (LOSS) The Badgers won, but this was as tough a game as they’ll play this year. The Bulldogs were in for the fight, and they had lots of chances. In the end, Wisconsin’s resilience and consistent defensive play finished off the Bulldogs in Fresno’s biggest home game in their history. I lost this one, but the Bulldogs are going to win me some money this year, I’ll bet on that.

Temple Owls (+6.5) @ Buffalo Bulls (12:00pm EST): (WINNER) A hail mary answered – you can’t get really angry about that. The points made me feel better though, and I knew I had already won when Buffalo tossed up a 50 yard prayer that I almost knew was going to be answered. Both teams played well, but it was the hail mary last second touchdown win that gave the game to the home team, leving Temple out and in the loss column, and me just a friendly underdog cover.

North Carolina State Wolfpack @ Clemson Tigers (-17.5) (12:00pm EST): (WINNER) I get some bad luck later, don’t worry. That’s right, I won this one by a half of a point, but that was a big half a point. NC State’s only score was an interception return for a touchdown, so it’s not like they had much of a chance. Still, I was worried until late when CJ Spiller scored a late touchdown to get me over the spread. Thanks young fella.

UAB Blazers (+30.5) @ Tennessee Volunteers (12:30pm EST): (LOSS) Ugh. This was a 32 point game – what can you do? I took the Blazers, but Tennessee did a nice job of shutting UAB down throughout, holding them to just 3 points. I was wrong about this one, but just barely.

Penn State Nittany Lions (-27) @ Syracuse Orange (3:30pm EST): (WINNER)b”Penn State is too tough and Syracuse can’t play a 2-3 zone in this one, so they are SOL. Take the road favorites to score at will.” 55-13… Does that cover a 27 point spread? I said this one wouldn’t be close and it wasn’t. I was right. Hooray me, and hooray you if you were listening.

Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (+7) @ Virginia Tech Hokies (3:30pm EST): (WINNER) Virginia Tech and Georgia Tech are now both 2-1, as the Hokies held on to beat the Jackets. The score was 17-20, and I covered. This was a tight one for sure. I still think G-Tech would win this game 7 out of 10 times, they have a better offense and a much tighter rushing attack (278 rushing yards against Tech on Saturday) but this was Tyrod Taylor’s day. The Hokies were helped out by some big GT penalties, as they got a much needed victory. They win, I win, can’t hate that.

Arkansas Razorbacks @ Texas Longhorns (-24) (3:30pm EST): (This game was postponed, so I’ll take it as a no bet, obviously)

Western Kentucky Hilltoppers (+28) @ Alabama Crimson Tide (7:00pm EST): (LOSS) Alabama was on fire to start this game, and they only needed 3 quarters of solid play to ice the HIlltoppers. Bama won, and I got one of my few losses on Saturday.

Middle Tennessee State (+17) @ Kentucky Wildcats (7:00pm EST): (WINNER)  The Wildcats needed 10 points in the 4th quarter to beat Middle Tennessee State, and that still almost wasn’t enough. What am I talking about? Joe Craddock, MTS’s quarterback, put up a last minute hail mary that was caught, but came just a yard short of being a touchdown and State lost by 6, 20-14. It was a tough one, but I loved my +17 as it was an easy win and never left me in doubt throughout the contest.

Bowling Green Falcons (+17) @ Boise State Broncos (8:00pm EST): (WINNER) 20-7 – I was almost had, but the Falcons played tough after going down 20-0 in the first half. They never allowed another Bronco score, and they added a 4th quarter touchdown of their own to make me a winner. Hey, every once in a while that last quarter meaningless score sure helps me out. I’ll take this one with a smile.

Utah Utes (-24) @ Utah State Aggies (8:00pm EST): (WINNER)  “Utah is more like Oregon than UNLV – and the Aggies lost to them both. I know it doesn’t work like this, but Utah beat UNLV by 21, and the Aggies lost to UNLV by 10 – that’s 31 – ha. Utah is a very good team that could make a run at undefeated. It’s time for them to rub that in their instate rival’s face. I’ll take the Utes here.” How’s 58-10? That’s not 31, that’s 48 folks. Utah is a very good team that would do some solid work in big conferences this year. They’ll have to win out to get a sniff at a BCS game, but I like their chances.

Free NCAA Football Picks: Week 2

After busting through the opening weekend by picking a few great upsets and getting slapped around a little by some teams I respected, Week 2 shouldn’t be quite as exciting right? Wrong – I’m out to win them all. Not as many games as last week, but check out my DirecTV ESPN GamePlan picks if you want some more action. All my games are on Saturday this time around, so no mid-week dancing for me. Enjoy all 7 of my picks! I’m feeling pretty good about these ones.

Saturday’s Games

Connecticut Huskies (-6) @ Temple Owls: (12:00pm EST, 9-6-2008)

The Huskies learned how to win last season. Temple is improved, but they are still Temple. LIke a lot of teams, UCONN’s win last weak wasn’t indicative of how their season will play out. Sure, they won easily (against Hofstra) but they didn’t look good in all aspects of the game. They got a little taste of reality, and I like that. I like that they dealt with it, had a really down game, and still won 35-3. They play stout defense that will slap the Owls in the face at their hyped home opener. I like UCONN to dominate this game on both sides of the ball.

BYU Cougars (-9) @ Washington Huskies: (3:00pm EST, 9-6-2008)

The Huskies are a solid 1st half team – they are just brutal in the 2nd half of just about every game. Oregon was better than many people thought they were going to be, but they weren’t that good. The Huskies are a one-man attack (QB stud Jake Locker), and that doesn’t bode well for their chances against a good Cougar team. The Cougars come in winners of their last 10 games, and believe me, they’ve played tougher road games than they’ll play on Saturday. It wouldn’t stun me if the Cougars took this game by three touchdowns.

Akron Zips (+5) @ Syracuse Orange: (3:30pm EST, 9-6-2008)

Syracuse has some talent, but the Zips can play the game. Akron can throw the all around pretty well with Chris Jacquemain at quarterback. They struggled a bit in the 2nd half against Wisconsin, but the Badgers are a very talented team. I think Akron will find plenty of open places in that Syracuse secondary. The Orange don’t have a rushing attack like Wisconsin does, so they won’t be able to bully the Zips like the Badgers did.

Central Michigan Chippewas @ Georgia Bulldogs (-23.5): (3:30pm EST, 9-6-2008)

The Bulldogs are 4 scores better than the Chippewas. They gave up 21 points last week, and I’m willing to bet they don’t give up half that many this week against Central Michigan. Mathew Stafford looked solid against Georgia Southern, but everyone expected that. The Bulldogs basically did whatever they wanted including take it easy late against their instate opponent. They will obliterated Central Michigan. The Bulldogs were up 38-7 to start the 4th quarter, but Southern scored two 4th quarter touchdowns to bring the game within 24 points. Because of that the Bulldogs lost a few points in the polls as USC went ballistic against Virginia, beating them 52-7, and took the #1 spot this week.  I’m guessing the Bulldogs do some scoring in this one and try to get that top spot back in USC’s bye.

Oregon State Beavers (+17) @ Penn State Nittany Lions (3:30pm EST, 8-30-2008)

OSU sure didn’t look very good in their opening game of the season, but they are a better team than that so I’ll take them again. A glutton for punnishment? Maybe, but I like to believe in what I see, and I see a solid team in Beaverville. Offensively they have a lot of playmakers and a quarterback that can deliver the ball. I will take that and 17 points over any Penn State team. The Nittany Lions are overrated, and the Beavers are a good enough team to show everyone exactly that. An upset here wouldn’t stun me.

West Virginia Moutaineers (-7.5) @ East Carolina Pirates: (10:00pm EST, 8-30-2008)

West Virginia allowed 21 points last week to college football’s version of nobody, while the East Carolina Pirates played some damn good football against the likes of the Hokies. East Carolina upset #17 Virginia Tech last week at home, and they’re looking to go 2-0 after facing two ranked teams back to back. Not gonna happen. The Pirates are a good club, don’t get me wrong, but VaTech was the most overrated team in the Top 25. The Mountaineers have something East Carolina has yet to see, an offense that can score on any defense in the nation. East Carolina won’t win a track meet with WV, and that’s what they’ll have to do to win. Remember, West Virginia held Villanova to one score through three quarters last week. Those 2 touchdowns brought this line down from double digits, I’d bet. I’ll take Pat White and his boys.

Maryland Terrapins (-12.5) @ Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders: The Terrapins had a really tough week and their starting quarterback didn’t play well. It won’t always be like that for a very good Maryland team. Luckily for you, and me, that first game is lodged in the minds of bettors and oddsmakers everywhere. Yhatzee for us! Maryland has great talent at receiver, a very tough defense, and a quarterback in Jordan Steffy that’s made a name for himself through his perseverance. I really like their chances against a very mediocre Blue Raider group.

These picks are good ones. Roll with them. Bet ’em. And reap those benefits.