"Roughing the Passer - A PK Frazier Novel"

My new book, "Offsetting Penalties - A PK Frazier Novel" is the follow-up to "Illegal Procedure" and "Roughing the Passer" and is now available in print and in e-formats at amazon.com, smashwords.com and iBooks. Follow me on twitter @kevinkrest.

Saturday, November 30, 2013

COLLEGE FOOTBALL WEEK 14 PICKS

There have been games played since Tuesday, and even though those picks are included in this list, they were published in blogs earlier in the week. It's rivalry weekend, and there have already been plenty of fireworks. But the big game today pits number one Alabama travelling to Auburn in the Iron Bowl with national championship hopes hanging in the balance. Second-ranked Florida State heads to the Swamp to play Florida in what is usually a competitive game. However, the Gators have lost six in a row and the 'Noles are looking ahead to a date with Alabama in January. And on the outside looking in right now are the Ohio State Buckeyes, who will enter the Big House in Ann Arbor with their hopes of playing for a national championship still intact.

Last week:            17 - 7
Overall:                190 - 59


(1) Alabama (11 - 0) 30 @ (4) Auburn (10 - 1) 24: While it would be refreshing to see Auburn end the Tide's run toward another national championship, Alabama's offense has too much for the Auburn defense. Three years ago, Cam Newton led the Tigers to a huge second half comeback on the way to their SEC and national title. But Newton's now leading the NFL Panthers on a run of their own and AJ McCarron is hitting on all cylinders for Alabama.

(2) Florida State (11 - 0) 37 @ Florida (4 - 7) 16: The Seminoles travel to the Swamp to take on a Gator team that is struggling to score points. Their defense is very good, but unless Florida State comes in flat, it doesn't look good for the home team. Jameis Winston is playing QB at a very high level for the 'Noles, despite his off the field issues. It's going to be impossible for Ohio State to pass Florida State in the BCS unless the Seminoles drop a game, which probable won't happen at Florida.

(3) Ohio State (11 - 0) 31 @ Michigan (7 - 4) 23: The Buckeyes are still very much in the hunt for a national championship berth. There's a lot of football left and in the past, upsets have frequently occurred on the last weekend of the season. This is a big rivalry, perhaps the biggest in the nation. Ohio State has to travel to Ann Arbor to take on an inconsistent Wolverine team that has had flashes of brilliance combined with periods of very poor play. The Buckeyes have rarely been challenged, so I like them to continue their dominance.

(21) Texas A&M (8 - 3) 35 @ (5) Missouri (10 -1) 30: Texas A&M's high flying offense was grounded by LSU last week, managing just 10 points behind Johnny Football. Missouri needs a win to clinch the SEC East. LSU matches up well against the Aggies, as they've been the only team to really stop A&M the last two years. Missouri isn't nearly as athletic on defense as LSU, so I'm predicting we'll see South Carolina playing against Alabama in the SEC title game. Call me crazy.

(6) Clemson (10 - 1) 34 @ (10) South Carolina (9 - 2) 31: This is one of many great matchups this weekend. Clemson, since it's loss to Florida State, has been flying a little bit under the radar. The Gamecocks have won the last four meetings between these in-state rivals, which one year produced a brawl so violent that it compelled Lou Holtz at South Carolina to turn down a bowl bid. When I was in college I got pulled over in South Carolina for a speeding ticket and a more serious offense, but was let off by the state trooper, whose son played baseball for Gamecocks, because I was on my way back to Virginia Tech after our baseball team took two of three from Clemson. Now that's a rivalry! But getting back to the game on the field, I'll take the Tigers to break the losing streak, even in Columbia, possibly securing a BCS bowl bid in the process.

(25) Notre Dame (8 - 3) 23  @ (8) Stanford (9 -2) 27: Stanford's win over Oregon has lost some luster with the Ducks' performances the last couple of weeks, including last night's nail biter against Oregon State. This doesn't appear to be a good match for Notre Dame, as I see Stanford as a faster and more physical version of the Irish.  The home field may be the difference in this game. I'll take the Cardinal in a good football game.

(9) Baylor (9 - 1) 31 @ TCU (4 -7) 20: TCU is nearing the end of a disappointing season and Baylor wants to bounce back from their trouncing at the hands of Oklahoma State.  The Horned Frogs traditionally have a strong defense under coach Gary Patterson, but this year they're having difficulty scoring. So even if they slow down the Bears, I'm not sure they can put enough points on the board to win.

Minnesota (8 - 3) 13 @ (11) Michigan State (10 -1) 24: The Spartans, as I've said the last few weeks, are one of the big surprises and maybe the most underrated team this season. Minnesota has a pretty good defense of its own, but hasn't been able to produce points against tough opponents. Michigan State will tune up for next week's Big Ten championship game against Ohio State with a tough, grind it out win over the

Arizona (7 - 4) 26 @ (12) Arizona State (9 - 2) 35 : Arizona, until last week's huge upset of Oregon, had lost to the top four teams on their schedule. Arizona State is on a roll, and even in a big rivalry game, they should be able to handle the Wildcats in Tempe. With a win today, the Sun Devils will also host Stanford in the Pac-12 championship game.

Penn State (6 -5) 17 @ (15) Wisconsin (9 - 2) 27: Penn State has played very well at home, but struggles on the road, where they've failed to win this season in three tries. It won't improve any today, with the Badgers bringing a six game win streak and a tough defense into the game at Camp Randall. I give the Nittany Lions a lot of credit for a good season following the controversy of the last two years, but they won't have enough today.

(22) UCLA (8 - 3) 24 @ (23) USC (9 - 3) 28: At one point, it looked like this game might help to decide the Pac-12 South title, but the Bruins' loss to Arizona State last week eliminated that possibility. But this is still a big cross-town rivalry game with bowl positioning repercussions and a chance for interim USC coach Ed Orgeron to continue to stay in the race to officially take over from Lane Kiffen, who was fired in midseason. I'm going to take the Trojans, giving them the edge defensively.

(24) Duke (9 - 2) 27 @ UNC (6 - 4) 30: Duke needs a win to clinch the ACC Coastal and secure a date against Florida State in the league championship game in Charlotte next week. North Carolina, after a rough start, has won five in a row and is playing like the team many thought would contend for the ACC Coastal title. They put up 80 points against Old Dominion last week and will pose a lot of problems for the surprising Blue Devils today, who come in with a seven game winning streak of their own. Duke's defense is playing at a high level and their offense is scoring enough to win game. But I like the Heels to pull it out at home.

Virginia Tech (7 - 4) 27 @ Virginia (2 - 9) 14: The Hokies will probably know by game time whether they still have a shot at a spot in the ACC championship game. If UNC prevails over Duke, a Tech win pits them against Florida State next week in Charlotte. The Hokies have won nine in a row and 13 out of 14, the longest period of dominance for either team in a rivalry that began in 1895 with eight consecutive Virginia wins. On the field, this has been a very difficult season for the Cavaliers, coming into the game sporting an eight game losing streak, during which they have rarely been competitive with the exception of a one-point loss to Maryland. While the Hokies have struggled on offense at times, I think their defense will be the difference today.

Georgia (7 - 4)  31 @ Georgia Tech (7 - 4) 26: Georgia came into the season with national championship aspirations, but after losing to Clemson, has suffered through an injury riddled season. Georgia Tech has played well since losing three games in a row early in the season and with a Duke loss, will tie for the ACC Coastal title. I think the talent level  on Georgia is better than at Georgia Tech and its shown as the Bulldogs have beaten the Yellow Jackets in eleven of the last twelve games between these long time in-state rivals. Georgia has figured out how to stop Paul Johnson's option running game and should continue the streak today.

Games Played Earlier in the Week:

Texas Tech (7 - 4) 27 @ Texas (7 - 3) 35: Texas Tech had the wheels come off an undefeated season when they hit the meat of their schedule. They haven't won a game since beating West Virginia way back on October 19. In those four losses, they gave up an average of over 50 points per game. Texas saw their six game win streak ended by what we now know is a very talented Oklahoma State team in their last game. The Red Raiders will go to Austin down, and the Longhorns should take them out tonight. Texas is still in contention in the Big 12 and have a lot more to play for, potentially including their coach's job, than Texas Tech. The conference is still a race, primarily because of Oklahoma's unexpected loss to West Virginia earlier in the season. For the Cowboys to win the Big 12, they will need to get by Oklahoma next week. If they don't, it opens up a number of scenarios for three other teams to win the league title. In some cases, I think the lack of a conference championship game is terrific. This is one of those cases.  Look for Texas to bring it big and enter next week's big showdown with Baylor with something significant to play for.

Western Michigan (1 - 10) 13 @ (14) Northern Illinois (11-0) 34: (This pick was in a previous blog that was posted prior to the game.) Northern Illinois has already clinched the MAC West and is now trying to win their last two to have another shot at another BCS bowl game. This shouldn't pose much of problem for Huskies. Western Michigan is one of the worst teams in the FBS and in last place in their division. Northern Illinois is scheduled to play either Bowling Green or Buffalo next week in the MAC championship game, with neither team being a pushover. The Huskies' QB Jordan Lynch is starting to get significant attention as a top NFL prospect. He should be able to make more strides tonight.

Oregon State (6 - 4) 21@ (13) Oregon (9 - 2) 40: This is not a particularly good week to be playing Oregon, who suffered an embarrassing loss to Arizona and any chance at winning the Pac-12 North last week. The Beavers were similarly embarrassed by Washington on their home field, so I look for the Ducks to smack their rivals around in blowout this afternoon.

(16) Fresno State (10 - 0) 37 @ San Diego State (5 - 6) 26: Fresno State faces one of the tougher tests it has had in the last few games, but after three consecutive losses, San Diego State doesn't appear to have enough to defeat the 16th ranked Bulldogs, who are still in contention for a BCS bowl berth.

Arkansas (3 - 8) 17 @ (17) LSU (8 - 3) 27: I just don't see how the Razorbacks can compete in this one. It's been a long season and what's apparent is that coach Bret Bielema just doesn't have the athletes yet on defense to support his preferred style of play. LSU has matured greatly, especially on defense, as the season has progressed. The Golden Boot should stay in Louisiana for another year.

South Florida (2 - 8) 14 @ (19) UCF (9 - 1) 34: No contest here, as UCF is trying to clinch the American Athletic Conference title with a win over the hapless Bulls. The Knights are physical, playing more like an SEC or ACC team. South Florida has no answer for UCF QB Blake Bortles, who should be able to lead his team to a big win today.

Washington State (6 - 5)  27 @ Washington (7 - 4) 31: Washington came alive last week, overwhelming Oregon State on the road. If they continue that kind of play, they should be able to take care of Washington State at home. Between the tough environment for visitors and their potent offense, I like the Huskies to be able to hold off their intrastate rival.

Ole Miss (7 - 4) 30 @ Mississippi State (5 - 6) 21: Mississippi State is playing for a bowl berth and Ole Miss will be playing to get a big rivalry win in the SEC West and grab a victory in the Egg Bowl. My question: What does the winning team get? A dozen eggs? Are they scrambled, over easy or even hard boiled? I mean really, the Egg Bowl? Anyway, back to the game. Ole Miss has had a very good season, losing only to the elite teams in the SEC while pulling off upsets of Texas and LSU. They have a ton of talent and are maybe a year or two away from contending in the conference. Mississippi State, against a very similar schedule, has not fared as well. Missouri was able to stop Ole Miss last week, but Mississippi State isn't close to the Tigers on either side of the ball. I'll put all of my eggs in the Ole Miss basket today.


Miami (8 - 3) 24 @ Pittsburgh (6-5) 21: The ACC Coastal race is very tight and the tiebreaker is complicated, but the only way Miami stays in contention is with a win and losses by Duke and Virginia Tech.  This is a chance for the previously ranked Hurricanes to redeem themselves to end the season, but travelling to Pittsburgh is a tough task.  I think Miami got its mojo back by drilling Virginia last week, so I'll go with them to beat a pesky Pitt team. 

Friday, November 29, 2013

FRIDAY COLLEGE FOOTBALL PREDICTIONS

Oregon State (6 - 4) 21    @ (13) Oregon (9 - 2) 40: This is not a particularly good week to be playing Oregon, who suffered an embarrassing loss to Arizona and any chance at winning the Pac-12 North last week. The Beavers were similarly embarrassed by Washington on their home field, so I look for the Ducks to smack their rivals around in blowout this afternoon.

(16) Fresno State (10 - 0) 37 @ San Diego State (5 - 6) 26: Fresno State faces one of the tougher tests it has had in the last few games, but after three consecutive losses, San Diego State doesn't appear to have enough to defeat the 16th ranked Bulldogs, who are still in contention for a BCS bowl berth.

Arkansas (3 - 8) 17 @ (17) LSU (8 - 3) 27: I just don't see how the Razorbacks can compete in this one. It's been a long season and what's apparent is that coach Bret Bielema just doesn't have the athletes yet on defense to support his preferred style of play. LSU has matured greatly, especially on defense, as the season has progressed. The Golden Boot should stay in Louisiana for another year.


South Florida (2 - 8) 14 @ (19) UCF (9 - 1) 34: No contest here, as UCF is trying to clinch the American Athletic Conference title with a win over the hapless Bulls. The Knights are physical, playing more like an SEC or ACC team. South Florida has no answer for UCF QB Blake Bortles, who should be able to lead his team to a big win today.

Miami (8 - 3) 24 @ Pittsburgh (6-5) 21: The ACC Coastal race is very tight and the tiebreaker is complicated, but the only way Miami stays in contention is with a win and losses by Duke and Virginia Tech.  This is a chance for the previously ranked Hurricanes to redeem themselves to end the season, but travelling to Pittsburgh is a tough task.  I think Miami got its mojo back by drilling Virginia last week, so I'll go with them to beat a pesky Pitt team.

Washington State (6 - 5)  27 @ Washington (7 - 4) 31: Washington came alive last week, overwhelming Oregon State on the road. If they continue that kind of play, they should be able to take care of Washington State at home. Between the tough environment for visitors and their potent offense, I like the Huskies to be able to hold off their intrastate rival. 

Thursday, November 28, 2013

THANKSGIVING DAY COLLEGE AND NFL PREDICTIONS

Turkey, dressing, gravy, sweet potatoes, green bean casserole, pumpkin pie and ... FOOTBALL! Now that's what Thanksgiving is all about. There are two college and three NFL games on the slate today and tonight. And believe it or not, all have implications on the postseason, whether it's to get eligible for a bowl game or to stay in contention for a playoff berth. Well, I hope everyone has a Happy Thanksgiving! Here are the picks.

College:

Ole Miss (7 - 4) 30 @ Mississippi State (5 - 6) 21: Mississippi State is playing for a bowl berth and Ole Miss will be playing to get a big rivalry win in the SEC West and grab a victory in the Egg Bowl. My question: What does the winning team get? A dozen eggs? Are they scrambled, over easy or even hard boiled? I mean really, the Egg Bowl? Anyway, back to the game. Ole Miss has had a very good season, losing only to the elite teams in the SEC while pulling off upsets of Texas and LSU. They have a ton of talent and are maybe a year or two away from contending in the conference. Mississippi State, against a very similar schedule, has not fared as well. Missouri was able to stop Ole Miss last week, but Mississippi State isn't close to the Tigers on either side of the ball. I'll put all of my eggs in the Ole Miss basket today.

Texas Tech (7 - 4) 27 @ Texas (7 - 3) 35: Texas Tech had the wheels come off an undefeated season when they hit the meat of their schedule. They haven't won a game since beating West Virginia way back on October 19. In those four losses, they gave up an average of over 50 points per game. Texas saw their six game win streak ended by what we now know is a very talented Oklahoma State team in their last game. The Red Raiders will go to Austin down, and the Longhorns should take them out tonight. Texas is still in contention in the Big 12 and have a lot more to play for, potentially including their coach's job, than Texas Tech. The conference is still a race, primarily because of Oklahoma's unexpected loss to West Virginia earlier in the season. For the Cowboys to win the Big 12, they will need to get by Oklahoma next week. If they don't, it opens up a number of scenarios for three other teams to win the league title. In some cases, I think the lack of a conference championship game is terrific. This is one of those cases.  Look for Texas to bring it big and enter next week's big showdown with Baylor with something significant to play for.

NFL:

Green Bay (5 - 5 - 1) 27 @ Detroit (6 - 5) 30: Matt Flynn will start at QB for the Packers as they try to surpass the Lions in the NFC North, where every team is struggling. Flynn is serviceable in the absence of Aaron Rodgers, but Green Bay is not even close to what they are when Rodgers is in the lineup. Meanwhile, the Lions have succeeded in losing their last two games, both of which they should have and could have won. Instead, they find themselves in a dogfight with the Packers and the Bears for the division lead, one that will probably go down to the final weekend of the season. The Lions just have too much talent offensively to have fallen the last couple of weeks. And Green Bay has gone 0 - 3 - 1 since Rodgers went down. In the first game between these two, the Pack dominated in a 22 - 9 win at Lambeau Field. This time, however, they have to travel to Detroit on a short week without their Pro Bowl QB. Something has to give, as neither of these teams has a win in its last two games. I'll go with the home team on Thanksgiving, but only because someone has to win...or do they?

Oakland (4 - 7) 24 @ Dallas (6 -5) 27: The Cowboys are difficult to predict, as are the Raiders. But Dallas has more talent and generally plays well through November. But Oakland runs the ball very well, McFadden will be in the Raider lineup and Terrell Pryor can also run on the Cowboys. It has pretty much come down to a race between Dallas and Philadelphia in the NFC East, so Dallas knows this is its best chance in a while to win the division. Although I think they're perfectly capable of stubbing their toe today, it's unlikely as they play Thanksgiving host to Oakland on a short week. The keys to the game will be for Dallas QB Tony Romo to keep from turning the ball over and for their defense to at least contain, if not stop, the Raider running game. If the Cowboys get behind and Romo is forced to make plays, they could be in trouble since Oakland has the ability to control the ball and shorten the game. In the end, I'll take Dallas to hold off the Raiders.

Pittsburgh (5 - 6) 23 @ Baltimore (5 - 6) 17: After falling to 2 - 6 and seemingly out of the playoff race, the Steelers have rebounded with three victories in a row, putting themselves into position to challenge for the AFC North title. The Ravens have relied totally on their defense in an up and down season following their Super Bowl title. QB Joe Flacco has been abysmal, completing less than 60% of his passes while throwing for 14 TD's and the same number of interceptions. I think the Steelers are rounding into form, while the Ravens continue to sputter on offense. In their previous meeting, Pittsburgh eeked out a 19 - 16 win. Since then, Pittsburgh has raised their game to another level, while the Ravens have stayed about the same. Even on the road in a short week, I'll take the Steelers to prevail in a dogfight. 

WEEK 12 NFL RECAP

The only good prediction I made this week was that it had disaster written all over it. And I was certainly on target. Three of the teams I picked lost on touchdowns scored in the final minute.  I decided to go with the home teams in some close games, and that came back to bite me. A record of 9 - 4 - 1 would have looked a lot better than how I ended up doing. Well, there's always next week.

Last Week:           6 - 7 - 1
Overall:                105 - 69 - 1

New Orleans (8 - 2) 27 @ Atlanta (2 -8) 24: The Falcons continue their very disappointing season, looking very much like a  4 - 12 team. Correct. 17 - 13.

Pittsburgh (4 - 6) 20 @ Cleveland (4 - 6) 17:  Here come the Steelers. They're a couple of games behind the Bengals and are playing well. Correct. 27 - 11.

Tampa Bay (2 - 8) 24 @ Detroit (6 - 4) 27: How a team with the talent of the Lions let this one get away is anyone's guess. They still lead the worst division in football, though. No. 24 - 21.

Minnesota (2 - 8) 20 @ Green Bay (5 - 5) 23: Talk about kissing your sister...Yuck! Tie. 26 - 26 OT.

San Diego (4 - 6) 17 @ Kansas City (9 - 1) 21: What happened to the Chiefs' dominant defense? Injuries, for one. Playing a good quarterback will also do it. No. 41 - 38.

Chicago (6 - 4) 27 @ St. Louis (4 - 6) 20: Monsters of the midway? Hardly. The only people scared of the Chicago defense are their own offense. No. 21 - 42.

Carolina (7 - 3) 24 @ Miami (5 - 5) 27: It looks like Cam Newton and the Panthers have finally figured out how to win close games. That's bad news for the rest of the NFC. No. 20 - 16.

New York Jets (5 - 5) 20 @ Baltimore (4 - 6) 17: Geno Smith just isn't ready for prime time and if the Jets are going to make a playoff run, it will have to be with a different QB.  No. 3 - 19.

Jacksonville (1 - 9) 26 @ Houston (2 - 8) 28: Yawn...No. 13 - 6.

Tennessee (4 - 6) 24 @ Oakland (4 - 6) 28: Tennessee's defense is playing well enough to allow Ryan Fitzpatrick to run a conservative offense and still have a chance to win. No. 23 - 19.

Indianapolis (7 - 3) 27 @ Arizona (6 -4) 31: There are big problems in Indy that have surfaced since their big early season wins. They need to fix what's broken if they want to make any noise in the playoffs.  Correct. 11 - 40.

Dallas (5 - 5) 30 @ New York Giants (4 - 6) 24:  Tony Romo put a big dent in the Giants' spost season chances. Correct. 24 - 21.

Denver (9 - 1) 20 @ New England (7 - 3) 27: Peyton Manning disappears in cold weather. Apparently so does the Broncos' pass defense. Correct. 31 - 34 OT.


San Francisco (6 - 4) 30 @ Washington (3 - 7) 24: There's only one word to describe the Redskins at the moment...Pathetic.  Correct. 27 - 6.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

COLLEGE FOOTBALL WEEK 13 RECAP

Three of the most potent offenses in the nation, those of Baylor, Oregon and Texas A&M, were unexpectedly shut down last week as their defenses were lit up. It just goes to show how vulnerable teams are that rely on one side of the ball to win games. The top two teams, Alabama and Florida State, can score and keep their opponents from scoring. Meanwhile, Ohio State needs to take care of Michigan, then hope Alabama stumbles against Auburn. Of course, the Buckeyes face a stern test next week against Michigan State before they can put an undefeated season to bed.


Last week:            17 - 7
Overall:                190 - 59

(16) Northern Illinois (10 - 0) 31 @ Toledo (7 - 3) 28: Not much of a surprise in this one, except Toledo led at the half. The Huskies wore them down in the second half, keeping their BCS bowl hopes alive. Correct. 35 - 17.

Rutgers (5 -4) 20  @ (18) UCF (8 - 1) 29: The Knights' only blemish on their record is a three point loss to South Carolina.  This is one tough team that plays more like an SEC squad than one from the American Athletic Conference. Correct. 17 - 41.

Chattanooga (8 - 3) 13 @ (1) Alabama (10 - 0) 38: The Tide just keeps on rolling, setting up a huge showdown at Auburn this weekend. Correct. 0 - 49.

Idaho (1 - 9) 6 @ (2) Florida State (10 - 0) 72:  I picked the spread in this one, a predictable 66 points. but the fate of QB Jameis Winston is still in doubt. Correct.  14 - 80.

Indiana (4 - 6) 17 @ (3) Ohio State (10 - 0) 58: Ohio State's next game is against Michigan, but it won't matter in the Big Ten race, only in the race to Pasadena and the BCS title game. Correct. 14 - 42.

(4) Baylor (9 - 0) 38 @ (10) Oklahoma State (9 - 1) 31: I should have gone with history here.  Still no Baylor wins at Stillwater since 1939. No. 17 - 49.

(5) Oregon (9 - 1) 37 @ Arizona (6 - 4) 23: Who could have seen this one coming? Apparently not me! No. 16 - 42.

The Citadel (5 - 6) 20 @ (7) Clemson (9 -1) 35: No surprise in this one, setting up a top ten showdown with South Carolina this week. Correct. 6 - 52.

(8) Missouri (9 - 1) 23 @ (24) Ole Miss (7 - 3) 24: The Tigers played some tough defense, shutting down the Rebel attack to stay alive for the SEC East title. No. 24 - 10.

California (1 - 10) 10 @ (9) Stanford (8 - 2) 31:  Stanford took out some frustration on an over-matched Cal team and in the process clinched the Pac-12 North. Correct. 13 - 63.

Coastal Carolina (9 - 1) 17 @ (11) South Carolina (8 - 2) 38:  Steve Spurrier has the Gamecocks ready to host Clemson this Saturday night. It could be a dandy. Correct. 10 - 70.

(12) Texas A&M (8 - 2) 37 @ (22) LSU (7 - 3) 31: LSU seems to have matured throughout the season, its defense shutting down Johnny Football in the process. No. 10 - 34.

(13) Michigan State (9 - 1) 27 @ Northwestern (4 - 6) 24: Michigan State will give Ohio State fits in the Big Ten championship game, regardless of the outcome of their game with Minnesota this week. Correct. 30 - 6.

(17) Arizona State (8 - 2) 30 @ (14) UCLA (8 - 2) 31: I knew this one would be a close call, but Arizona State ended up clinching the Pac-12 South. No. 38 - 33.

New Mexico (3 - 7) 14 @ (15) Fresno State (9 - 0) 34: Fresno has another sub-.500 team to beat before the Mountain West championship game. If they win out, we'll have to see if they can stay stay in contention for a BCS bowl berth.  Correct. 28 - 69.

(19) Wisconsin (8 - 2) 27 @ (25) Minnesota (8 - 2) 24: The Badgers exerted their physical superiority, but they can't get the Big Ten championship game. Correct. 20 - 7.

(20) Oklahoma (8 - 2) 28 @ Kansas State (6 - 4) 27: The Sooners will have a week off to prepare for Oklahoma State for the Bedlam game in Stillwater. They can still be a factor in the Big 12. Correct. 41 - 31.

Memphis (3 - 6) 20 @ (20) Louisville (9 - 1) 31: Memphis made this game close in the fourth quarter, but still fell short. Louisville needs to win their final game against Cincinnati next Thursday and hope UCF loses its final two games in order to win the conference. Not a great chance of that. Correct. 17 - 24.

(23) USC (8 - 3) 38 @ Colorado (4 - 6) 20: USC has made a great comeback this season, but got eliminated in the Pac-12 South with Arizona State's win over UCLA. Correct. 47 - 29.

Duke (8 - 2) 34 @ Wake Forest (4 - 6) 23: The Blue Devils are one win away from their first ACC Coastal title. But a loss Saturday to a hot UNC team, coupled with a Virginia Tech win, send the Hokies to the slaughter to face Florida State. Correct. 28 - 21.

Mississippi State (4 - 6) 27 vs. Arkansas (3 - 7) 30 (at Little Rock): No. The Hogs snatched defeat from the jaws of victory. Now they get to travel to Death Valley to face LSU on Friday. No. 24 - 17 OT.

Nebraska (7 - 3) 27 @ Penn State (6 - 4) 21: This one was a little tougher for the Cornhuskers than I thought it would be. Correct. 23 - 20 OT.

BYU (7 - 3) 26 @ Notre Dame (7 - 3) 28: The Irish took care of business as expected, bringing on a good matchup at Stanford to end the season. Correct. 13 - 23.


Washington (6 - 4) 30  Oregon State (6 - 4) 34: This one wasn't even as close as the score indicated, with the Beavers scoring all of their points in the fourth quarter after falling behind 48 - 0. No. 69 - 27.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

TUESDAY NIGHT COLLEGE FOOTBALL PICK

Western Michigan (1 - 10) 13 @ (14) Northern Illinois (11-0) 34: Northern Illinois has already clinched the MAC West and is now trying to win their last two to have another shot at another BCS bowl game. This shouldn't pose much of problem for Huskies. Western Michigan is one of the worst teams in the FBS and in last place in their division. Northern Illinois is scheduled to play either Bowling Green or Buffalo next week in the MAC championship game, with neither team being a pushover. The Huskies' QB Jordan Lynch is starting to get significant attention as a top NFL prospect. He should be able to make more strides tonight.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

WEEK 12 NFL PICKS

There are a lot of very difficult picks this week.  I've managed to stay at or above .500 every week, but this has disaster written all over it. We'll just have to see how it plays out.

Overall:   99 - 62

New Orleans (8 - 2) 27 @ Atlanta (2 -8) 24: (This pick appeared in a prior blog before the game). The Falcons have had what is possibly the most disappointing season in the league, starting with a loss to the Saints in week 1. Since then, injuries have mounted and Atlanta has fallen totally out of contention for the postseason. Meanwhile, New Orleans has continued to roll, now posing a credible challenge to Seattle for the top seed in the NFC.  Those two teams play next week in Seattle, but for that game to have real meaning, the Saints need to defeat the Falcons tonight. This is a true rivalry game, going back to their days as expansion teams in the NFL. Fans from both sides travel to the opposing city, creating more of a college atmosphere than the usual professional environment. Still, the Falcons are short on weapons and the Saints have plenty of them. This game promises to be much closer than one would think, given the records. Even though I'm tempted to take the Falcons in an upset, especially because Atlanta is the home team on a short week. But I'll take the Saints to find a way to prevail.

Pittsburgh (4 - 6) 20 @ Cleveland (4 - 6) 17: The Steelers are all of a sudden in the mix for the AFC North title, but still looking up at Cincinnati. For them to make a legitimate run, they have to win today in Cleveland. The Browns had some life earlier in the season, but I believe, even on the road in a big rivalry game, that Pittsburgh can take Cleveland.

Tampa Bay (2 - 8) 24 @ Detroit (6 - 4) 27: The Lions were embarrassed in a couple of ways last week and the Bucs are coming off two wins in a row. Detroit should be able win what will probably be a close one.

Minnesota (2 - 8) 20 @ Green Bay (5 - 5) 23: I don't see the Pack winning many games without injured QB Aaron Rodgers, but they're at home today against a mediocre Vikings squad. I'll go with the home team.

San Diego (4 - 6) 17 @ Kansas City (9 - 1) 21: The Chiefs return home after suffering their first loss at Denver. The Chargers, despite having pretty good talent, just can't seem to maintain any consistency. Kansas City's defense was beaten last week, but still handled Manning pretty well. Look for the Chiefs to take care of business at home.

Chicago (6 - 4) 27 @ St. Louis (4 - 6) 20: The Rams are a very tough, physical team, but so are the Bears. St. Louis is not really in the playoff picture, but if they get on a run, maybe they can squeak in.  I don't have a good reason for going with Chicago, but I am.

Carolina (7 - 3) 24 @ Miami (5 - 5) 27: This can be a little bit of a trap game for the Panthers. They're coming off one of the biggest wins in recent history in a big Monday night game against the Patriots. The Dolphins seem to have weathered the storm from the controversy surrounding the Jonathan Martin ordeal.

New York Jets (5 - 5) 20 @ Baltimore (4 - 6) 17: I don't know what to make of the Jets. That defense plays well one week, then gets scorched the next. Just like the Steelers, the Ravens are still in the AFC North conversation. But I like the Jets to bounce back. I have no idea why.

Jacksonville (1 - 9) 26 @ Houston (2 - 8) 28: Does anyone really care about this game? Heck, the Jacksonville television station would probably rather show a different game.

Tennessee (4 - 6) 24 @ Oakland (4 - 6) 28: The Raiders have four wins and I can't explain how. The Titans have six losses and I can't explain why. I'm taking Oakland in this game and I can't explain why.

Indianapolis (7 - 3) 27 @ Arizona (6 -4) 31: Which Colts team shows up in the desert today? It's hard to say, but it's easier to find people that think Indy will drill the Cardinals. I'm not in that camp, because I like the way Arizona plays at home.

Dallas (5 - 5) 30 @ New York Giants (4 - 6) 24: This one is a tough call, but the Giants aren't a very good home team, the Cowboys are coming off a bye and New York still isn't very good, despite four wins in a row against poor teams. I never like picking the Cowboys, but I will today.

Denver (9 - 1) 20 @ New England (7 - 3) 27: Peyton Manning just doesn't play well in cold weather. Compound that with his poor record against New England, and you get a recipe for disaster for the Broncos.


San Francisco (6 - 4) 30 @ Washington (3 - 7) 24: RGIII caused a stir in Washington with his post-game comments last week. The 'Niners are struggling and need a win to stay in touch of the leading teams in the NFC. I think the 'Skins just don't have what it takes to beat San Francisco in a game where the Forty-Niners pretty much need to win.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

COLLEGE FOOTBALL WEEK 13 PICKS



Last week:            18 - 5
Overall:                173 - 52

(16) Northern Illinois (10 - 0) 31 @ Toledo (7 - 3) 28: (This pick was included in a previous blog, prior to  the game.) Northern Illinois needs to win tonight to clinch the MAC West title. A loss would throw the Huskies into a tie with Ball State and Toledo with one game remaining. All three teams will be heavily favored next week, so this should be a very hard fought game. On paper, Northern Illinois scores more points and gives up less than Toledo. But Toledo's playing at home and they do score enough points to give Northern Illinois a fight. I'm tempted to pick the upset here, but I think the visitors have just enough to stay unbeaten and get a berth in the MAC championship game. However, I wouldn't necessarily count out the Rockets if they can get a turnover or two and an early lead. 

Rutgers (5 -4) 20  @ (18) UCF (8 - 1) 29: (This pick was included in a previous blog, prior to  the game.) The Golden Knights are still in the hunt for a BCS bowl berth, but Rutgers poses a viable threat to get in the way of UCF's run to an American Athletic Conference title. Even with a loss, UCF still controls their own destiny, owning the tie breaker against Louisville and Cincinnati.  A month ago, Rutgers would have looked a lot better to pull the upset, but they've lost three of their last four games, the last one a blowout 52 - 17 loss to Cincinnati at home. Those three losses are to the second, third and fourth place teams in the conference, so it's not like they were beaten by poor clubs. The other loss was in overtime to fifteenth ranked Fresno State and the Scarlet Knights also own a win over Arkansas from the SEC. They're  giving up over 31 points a game and scoring less than 30 heading into a game with a pretty potent defense whose only loss was by three points to twelfth rated South Carolina. This shapes up to be a fairly good ball game, but the home team should come out on top, thanks to that tough defense.

Chattanooga (8 - 3) 13 @ (1) Alabama (10 - 0) 38: Not exactly the test you would expect for a top-ranked team from the SEC this late in the season. But maybe the Crimson Tide can use a break before next week's game with Auburn for the SEC South title.

Idaho (1 - 9) 6 @ (2) Florida State (10 - 0) 72: The only thing that can possibly defeat the Seminoles this week would be distractions from the Jameis Winston investigation. Florida State will be able to put up 100 on the Vandals if they want to, with or without Winston at QB.

Indiana (4 - 6) 17 @ (3) Ohio State (10 - 0) 58: The Hoosiers are in for a long afternoon, as Ohio State needs to be impressive to keep their number three spot in the BCS. Indiana's coming off a 51 - 3 loss to Wisconsin, so this one should be ugly.

(4) Baylor (9 - 0) 38 @ (10) Oklahoma State (9 - 1) 31: This is without a doubt the game of the weekend. Baylor's recent history against the Cowboys hasn't been very good, but they've been almost impossible to stop this season, averaging over 60 points a game. Meanwhile, OSU has rebounded from a loss to West Virginia to stay in control of their destiny in the Big 12. I look for Baylor to win in Stillwater for the first time since 1939.

(5) Oregon (9 - 1) 37 @ Arizona (6 - 4) 23: The Ducks are trying to stay in the hunt for the BCS championship game, hoping for some strange events to help them out. But history is on their side. Just keep winning and they still have a shot.

The Citadel (5 - 6) 20 @ (7) Clemson (9 -1) 35: Another late season breather for a top ten team. The long season has made for some interesting matchups in November.  It might be a little closer than expected, but Clemson should still win easily.

(8) Missouri (9 - 1) 23 @ (24) Ole Miss (7 - 3) 24: This is a tough pick. Ole Miss has three losses, all to the top three teams in the SEC West. They have wins over Texas and LSU.  Missouri's record has been produced against a much easier schedule, especially considering that the SEC East is down a bit this season. I'll take the hoe team in a nail biter.

California (1 - 10) 10 @ (9) Stanford (8 - 2) 31:  Stanford finally gets a breather against an overmatched Cal team in the Big Game.

Coastal Carolina (9 - 1) 17 @ (11) South Carolina (8 - 2) 38: The Gamecocks don't have quite as easy a game as one would think against a team ranked eleventh in the FCS. True, the Chanticleers haven't faced an  team from the FBS this season and they've lost to the only other quality team on their schedule. But South Carolina better not be looking ahead to next week's showdown with Clemson or trying to get ready to watch Missouri take on Ole Miss, or they could be in for a surprise.

(12) Texas A&M (8 - 2) 37 @ (22) LSU (7 - 3) 31: Neither of these teams remains in contention for the SEC West crown, but it's a big game nonetheless. LSU's defense hasn't been quite as formidable this season and no one has slowed Johnnie Football. Even in their losses, the Aggies have put up 42 and 41 points. At night, I might go with the Tigers, but I just don't think LSU can keep up with A&M.

(13) Michigan State (9 - 1) 27 @ Northwestern (4 - 6) 24: The Spartans are the surprise team of the season, assuming someone puts a loss on Baylor. Northwestern hasn't won since hosting ESPN's Game Day and Ohio State back in October. I expect that string to continue today.

(17) Arizona State (8 - 2) 30 @ (14) UCLA (8 - 2) 31: This is a very compelling matchup. UCLA hasn't lost to a Pac-12 team under coach Jim Mora. But the Sun Devils are playing very well themselves. This is a tossup for me. I'll stick with the home team in a very close game.

New Mexico (3 - 7) 14 @ (15) Fresno State (9 - 0) 34: Another easy game for my pick for most overrated team.

(19) Wisconsin (8 - 2) 27 @ (25) Minnesota (8 - 2) 24: The Golden Gophers have been a pretty big surprise, and remain in contention for the Big Ten Legends crown. They'll need a win today against Wisconsin, a loss by Michigan State and then knock off the Spartans next week. Unfortunately, I think the Badgers have too much for them.

(20) Oklahoma (8 - 2) 28 @ Kansas State (6 - 4) 27: The host Wildcats have won four in a row and are the only team that's been able to contain high scoring Baylor. Oklahoma was shellacked by the Bears a couple of weeks ago. Another close call, but I'll take Oklahoma.

Memphis (3 - 6) 20 @ (20) Louisville (9 - 1) 31: Memphis may hang tough for three quarters, but I see the Cardinals wearing them down late.

(23) USC (8 - 3) 38 @ Colorado (4 - 6) 20: The Trojans have UCLA next week and shouldn't be challenged by the Buffs.

Duke (8 - 2) 34 @ Wake Forest (4 - 6) 23: Duke needs to win out to take the ACC Coastal crown. Wake could probably give them a battle, but the Blue Devils are playing very well right now.

Mississippi State (4 - 6) 27 vs. Arkansas (3 - 7) 30 (at Little Rock): This is the best chance for the Hogs to get a win in a while. I think they'll finally get their first SEC win for Bret Bielema.

Nebraska (7 - 3) 27 @ Penn State (6 - 4) 21: Nebraska should be able to get the win on the road.

BYU (7 - 3) 26 @ Notre Dame (7 - 3) 28: BYU has had a good run since losing at woeful Virginia in the first game of the season. This is another tight contest, but I'll take Notre Dame at home.

Washington (6 - 4) 30  Oregon State (6 - 4) 34: The home standing Beavers are coming off three losses in a row to Stanford, USC and at Arizona State. Nothing to be ashamed of there. The Huskies four losses are to Stanford, Oregon, Arizona State and UCLA. I'll take Oregon St.


Friday, November 22, 2013

COLLEGE FOOTBALL WEEK 12 FOOTBALL RECAP

My top twenty-five picks were pretty good. But my Hokies, with me in attendance, couldn't complete the comeback in overtime. And Northwestern stayed winless since Ohio State.

Last Week:            18 - 5
Overall:                173 - 52

Georgia Tech (6-3) 24 @ (8) Clemson (8-1) 37: We seem to have forgotten about the Tigers on the national scene. Clemson kept their BCS bowl hopes alive, most likely hinging on their rivalry game with South Carolina to end the season.  Correct. 31 - 55.

Washington (6-3) 27 @ (13) UCLA (7-2) 31:  If the Bruins win out against Arizona State and USC, they take the Pac-12 South. Not an easy task, but they're still alive. Correct. 31 - 41.

(1) Alabama (9-0) 31 @ Mississippi State (4-5) 13: This one was little tougher than I thought it would, but Alabama stayed on a collision course with Auburn. Correct. 20 - 7.

Syracuse (5-4)  17 @ (2) Florida State (9-0)  41: The 'Noles better hope Jameis Winston stays on the field. Correct. 3 - 59.

(3) Ohio State (9-0) 38 @ Illinois (3-6) 13: The Buckeyes are a good team, but their schedule is working against them in the BCS. Correct. 60 - 35.

(4) Stanford (8-1) 27 @ USC (7-3) 28: The Trojans are back, but their chances at a Pac-12 South title are slim. Correct. 17 - 20.

Texas Tech (7-3) 20 @ (5) Baylor (8-0) 37: Baylor continues to roll, and now has to take on Oklahoma State, a team they've always struggled with.  Correct. 34 - 63.

Utah (4-5)  17 @ (6) Oregon (8-1) 37: Oregon is trying to stay alive in the BCS with their one loss. Correct. 21 - 44.

(25) Georgia (6-3) 30 @ (7) Auburn (9-1) 34:  If not for a miracle tip, resulting in a touchdown for Auburn, I would have looked pretty bad on this pick. Instead, the Tigers have a bye week to prepare for Alabama, with the winner advancing to the SEC title game. Correct. 38 - 43.

Florida (4-5) 20 @ (10) South Carolina (7-2) 28: The Gamecock's SEC season is over. If Missouri loses one of its last two games at Ole Miss or at home against Texas A&M, then South Carolina wins the SEC East.  Correct. 14 - 19.

(12) Oklahoma State (8-1) 35 @ (24) Texas (7-2) 31: The Big 12 is still open, with a few big games left. Next up for the Cowboys, undefeated Baylor. Correct. 38 - 13.

(16) Michigan State (8-1) 24 @ Nebraska (7-2) 20: It wasn't the Spartan defense, but their offense that was the key to the game. Now they're definitely in control of the Legends Division of the Big Ten.  Correct. 41 - 28.

(17) UCF (7-1) 51 @ Temple (1-8) 10: This game was a lot closer than I thought it would be. UCF was fortunate to escape Philadelphia with a victory and their BCS bowl game hopes intact.  Correct. 39 - 36.

Iowa State (1-8) 10 @ (18) Oklahoma (7-2) 38: Like I predicted, not much a contest. Correct. 10 - 48.

Oregon State (6-3) 30 @ (19) Arizona State (7-2) 38: Arizona State is quietly making a run in the Pac-12. This sets up a big game at UCLA this Saturday that will go a long way in deciding the Pac-12 South. A Sun Devils' victory clinches the division, a UCLA win keeps the Bruins alive.  Correct. 17 - 30.

Houston (7-2) 31 @ (20) Louisville (8-1) 27: Louisville was impressive on defense, but they still haven't done enough to impress me. No. 13 - 20.

Indiana (4-5) 13 @ (22) Wisconsin (7-2) 30: Wisconsin continues to have a good season and had their chances against Ohio State earlier in the season. Now all they can do is hope the Buckeyes collapse. Correct. 3 - 51.

(23) Miami, FL (7-2) 30 @ Duke (7-2) 27: It looks to me like the loss to Florida State took the life out of the Hurricanes. They appear to have given up, losing by 18 points to both Virginia Tech and Duke. No. 30 - 48.

Maryland (5-4) 12 @ Virginia Tech (7-3) 27: Well, as I mentioned in the prediction, Maryland played well and the Hokies struggled on offense...again. Despite coming back to force overtime, Tech couldn't get a touchdown in the extra period. But miraculously, they're still alive in the ACC Coastal. No. 27 - 24 OT.

TCU (4-6) 20 @ Kansas State (5-4) 27: TCU gave it everything they had, but just came up a little short.. Correct. 31 - 33.

Michigan (6-3) 23 @ Northwestern (4-5) 27: Northwestern hasn't won a game since hosting ESPN's Game Day. This time, Michigan came out on the winning end of an overtime game.  No. 27 - 19 3OT.

Washington State (4-5) 31 @ Arizona (6-3) 34: Washington State returned to their early season form to pull the upset. No. 24 - 17.


Kentucky (2-7) 17 @ Vanderbilt (5-4) 26: Vanderbilt became bowl eligible, a big deal in Nashville. Correct. 6 - 22.

WEEK 11 NFL RECAP

A little better week, but the Jets and Redskins let me down again. I guess it's time to admit that the Redskins just don't have what it takes to contend and that the Jets are going to be up and down this season. With Geno Smith's inconsistency, they may need to turn to Matt Simms for the duration of the year. As for the Lions, it's a bit inexplicable how they can lose to a mediocre Steeler team that is now in the hunt for a playoff spot. And the Dolphins bounced back to their chances alive for that same spot.

Last Week:             10 -5
Overall:                99 - 62

Indianapolis (6-3) 31 @ Tennessee (4-5) 23 :  The Colts needed to pull this out, but it's clear this team isn't playing the same kind of football that beat Seattle, San Francisco and Denver. Correct. 30 -27.

New York Jets (5-4) 23 @ Buffalo (3-7) 16: I'm changing the name of the Jets to the Yo-Yo's. No. 14 - 37.

Baltimore (4-5) 19 @ Chicago (5-4) 24: Bad weather, bad field, bad football. But the Bears stay in control of the NFC North. Correct. 20 - 23.

Cleveland (4-5) 17 @ Cincinnati (6-4) 27:  The Bengals took the battle of Ohio and extended their lead in the AFC North. But they need to keep an eye on the Steelers. Correct. 20 -41.

Washington (3-6) 27 @ Philadelphia (5-5) 24:  I'm open to changing my allegiance to another team. Come on RGIII. You have to get that last TD. No. 16 - 24.

Detroit (6-3) 30 @ Pittsburgh (3-6) 20: Between Pittsburgh and the Giants, one of those slow starters might just get to the playoffs, as improbable as that seemed a month ago. No. 27 - 37.

Atlanta (2-7) 21 @ Tampa Bay (1-8 ) 24: The Falcons continue their demise and the Bucs grab their second in a row. Correct. 28 - 41.

Arizona (5-4) 27 @ Jacksonville (1-8) 16: What's the over/under on how long the Jags stay in Jacksonville? I say 1 1/2 years. Correct. 27 - 14.

Oakland (3-6) 20 @ Houston (2-7) 23: Only the Texans can challenge the Falcons for most disappointing season. No. 28 - 23.

San Diego (4-5) 30 @ Miami (4-5) 24: The Dolphins looked like they did earlier in the season and the Chargers just can't put two or three games together. No. 16 - 20.

San Francisco (6-3) 20 @ New Orleans (7-2) 27: Okay, so the Saints benefitted from a qquestionable call, but the 'Niners didn't manage the end of the game very well. Correct. 20 - 23.

Green Bay (5-4) 19 @ New York Giants (3-6) 24: Here come the Giants again. They have the NFC East just where they want them. Correct. 13 - 27.

Minnesota (2-7) 17 @ Seattle (9-1) 30: The Seahawks just keep rolling, get a bye and they get to make a real statement as they host the Saints next week. Correct. 20 - 41.

Kansas City (9-0) 21 @ Denver (8-1) 24: The Chiefs didn't even touch Manning? Really? They need to make some adjustments before these teams meet again in ten days at Arrowhead. Correct. 17 - 27.


New England (7-2) 23 @ Carolina (6-3) 27: Flag? What flag? Did you see a flag? Unfortunately, the no call at the end of the game overshadowed a terrific game. Correct. 20 -24.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

A POSSIBLE PHONE CONVERSATION BETWEEN BIG BASEBALL STAR AND FORMER BIG CYCLING STAR

I'm not saying that the following conversation happened, but after a certain baseball player stormed out of his arbitration hearing, it got me thinking that maybe that player might have talked to another high profile athlete that went through a period of trial and speculation about the use of performance enhancement drugs (PED's).

Big Baseball Guy (BBG): Uh, hey there, Former Big Cycling Guy (FBCG), I don't know if you've heard, but I've got a bit of a problem with, well, you know, PED's.

FBCG: I heard something about that. What's the problem?

BBG: Well, they want to suspend me for a bunch of games, and you know, I make a lot of money and that would kind of hit me where it hurts, you know?

FBCG: I hear you. You'd think these guys would just let us do our thing, you know? I mean, who gets hurt, right? It's not like everyone's not doing it.

BBG: Exactly, FBCG! You get it. But the reason I'm calling is I need, you know, a strategy, a plan. Maybe some kind of diversion. It seemed to work for you for a long time.

FBCG: Well, you should have called me a decade ago. I mean, it's a little late for you to start a cool foundation, give out little rubber bracelets or date a high profile, popular rock singer. The cancer thing helped, of course, but I wouldn't recommend that.

BBG: Yeah, I admit I should've thought this thing through a little earlier. But what do you recommend now? I mean, there's a lot of coin on the line here.

FBCG: Deny, deny, deny and threaten anyone that questions you. That could maybe buy you some extra time on the field, which doesn't really matter, but the coin does, you hear me? I mean you have your World Series ring already.

BBG: Yeah, I've tried to be pretty level headed. And that intimidation thing looked like a good deal, but it's not working. The top guy's just out to get me.

FBCG: You know, have you tried the righteous indignation tactic? I mean, that worked for me for years. No one figures someone that's guilty could possibly be that angry over getting caught. You might want to, I don't know, maybe yell and walk out of the hearing. Just a thought.

BBG: Wow! That's pure genius, FBCG. I'm going to go with that one. Hopefully, you'll see how it goes on Sportscenter. Thanks!

FBCG: Oh, and a little about the apology, you know, after you've milked the system for all you can get and want to be seen as, well, sincerely apologetic.

BBG: I thought maybe I'd skip that part.


FBCG: Not a good idea. People in the U.S. love that stuff. But you'll need to pick someone other than Oprah. She has her own problems and her ratings have dropped. Maybe try The View, or even O'Reilly. Just sayin'. Anyway, gotta go. I have a meeting with my doctor. You know, I'm planning a comeback. Later and good luck.

THURSDAY COLLEGE AND NFL PICKS

College:

Rutgers (5 -4) 20  @ (18) UCF (8 - 1) 29: The Golden Knights are still in the hunt for a BCS bowl berth, but Rutgers poses a viable threat to get in the way of UCF's run to an American Athletic Conference title. Even with a loss, UCF still controls their own destiny, owning the tie breaker against Louisville and Cincinnati.  A month ago, Rutgers would have looked a lot better to pull the upset, but they've lost three of their last four games, the last one a blowout 52 - 17 loss to Cincinnati at home. Those three losses are to the second, third and fourth place teams in the conference, so it's not like they were beaten by poor clubs. The other loss was in overtime to fifteenth ranked Fresno State and the Scarlet Knights also own a win over Arkansas from the SEC. They're  giving up over 31 points a game and scoring less than 30 heading into a game with a pretty potent defense whose only loss was by three points to twelfth rated South Carolina. This shapes up to be a fairly good ball game, but the home team should come out on top, thanks to that tough defense.

NFL:


New Orleans (8 - 2) 27 @ Atlanta (2 -8) 24: The Falcons have had what is possibly the most disappointing season in the league, starting with a loss to the Saints in week 1. Since then, injuries have mounted and Atlanta has fallen totally out of contention for the postseason. Meanwhile, New Orleans has continued to roll, now posing a credible challenge to Seattle for the top seed in the NFC.  Those two teams play next week in Seattle, but for that game to have real meaning, the Saints need to defeat the Falcons tonight. This is a true rivalry game, going back to their days as expansion teams in the NFL. Fans from both sides travel to the opposing city, creating more of a college atmosphere than the usual professional environment. Still, the Falcons are short on weapons and the Saints have plenty of them. This game promises to be much closer than one would think, given the records. Even though I'm tempted to take the Falcons in an upset, especially because Atlanta is the home team on a short week. But I'll take the Saints to find a way to prevail.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

WEDNESDAY COLLEGE FOOTBALL PICK

(16) Northern Illinois (10 - 0) 31 @ Toledo (7 - 3) 28: Northern Illinois needs to win tonight to clinch the MAC West title. A loss would throw the Huskies into a tie with Ball State and Toledo with one game remaining. All three teams will be heavily favored next week, so this should be a very hard fought game. On paper, Northern Illinois scores more points and gives up less than Toledo. But Toledo's playing at home and they do score enough points to give Northern Illinois a fight. I'm tempted to pick the upset here, but I think the visitors have just enough to stay unbeaten and get a berth in the MAC championship game. However, I wouldn't necessarily count out the Rockets if they can get a turnover or two and an early lead. 

Sunday, November 17, 2013

WEEK 11 NFL PICKS

After a dismal 7 - 7 last week, I need to rebound during a week with a lot of close and compelling match ups, highlighted by the Chiefs visit to Denver to take on Peyton Manning and the Broncos. Several teams are in must win situations, including Washington and New York in the NFC East, plus probably the Chargers, who face similarly positioned Miami. The weekend will end with the red-hot Panthers hosting New England, coming off a bye. Here are the picks.

Overall:  89 - 57

Indianapolis (6-3) 31 @ Tennessee (4-5) 23 : (This pick was published in a blog on Thursday.) Both teams are coming off crushing losses, with the Colts getting pummeled by the Rams. Tennessee gave the Jaguars their first win of the season. I don't know about the Colts. They've beaten San Francisco, Seattle and Denver, but they've scored only 37 points in losses to Miami, San Diego and St. Louis. Which team will show up tonight? It's hard to say. Tennessee's loss to Jacksonville was devastating for the Titans, not just because the Jags came into the game with a winless record, but because it dropped Tennessee to 4 - 5 as opposed to 5 - 4, putting them into an even  greater must win situation if they drop this game to the Colts. Without starting QB Jake Locker, I think it will be difficult for the Titans to defeat the Colts, even though Indy heads on the road with a short week. I'm going with the notion that Indianapolis is too good of a team to lose two in a row to teams they should beat.

New York Jets (5-4) 23 @ Buffalo (3-7) 16: The Jets were left for dead at the beginning of the season, and now they can play their way back into the AFC playoff picture. I think they'll do it.

Baltimore (4-5) 19 @ Chicago (5-4) 24: This is a critical game for both of these teams. The Ravens are still in the hunt in the AFC North, while the Bears are trying to hang in there in the NFC North. Baltimore is not a great road team, so I'll go with Chicago.

Cleveland (4-5) 17 @ Cincinnati (6-4) 27: The battle for Ohio has real implications for the AFC North. The Bengals blew a chance at Baltimore last week to take control of the division. I think they have too much for the Browns.

Washington (3-6) 27 @ Philadelphia (5-5) 24: I have a hard time picking against my Redskins, but the Eagles are hitting on all cylinders behind QB Nick Foles. A Washington loss and the season's pretty much over. I can't help myself. I'm going with my heart.

Detroit (6-3) 30 @ Pittsburgh (3-6) 20: The Steelers are trying desperately to hang on and stay relevant in the AFC North. The Lions can maintain a stronghold on the NFC North with a win. I just don't see Steelers, even at home, being able to contain Reggie Bush and Calvin Johnson and score enough to win.

Atlanta (2-7) 21 @ Tampa Bay (1-8 ) 24: The Falcons are in disarray and the Bucs are looking to build on their win against the Dolphins. I'll take the home team in this one, mainly because Tampa Bay can play defense.

Arizona (5-4) 27 @ Jacksonville (1-8) 16:  The Jags got their first win last week at Tennessee, but the Cardinals are still in the playoff hunt.  Jacksonville just isn't good enough to win two in a row.

Oakland (3-6) 20 @ Houston (2-7) 23: Who really cares how this one turns out? I guess the Texans and Raiders do. I haven't been paying much attention to the bottom feeders, so this is a coin flip for me. When in doubt, take the home team.

San Diego (4-5) 30 @ Miami (4-5) 24: These two teams are struggling to stay alive in the AFC playoff hunt.  The Dolphins are still embroiled in the Jonathan Martin controversy and coming off a loss to the formerly winless Buccaneers. The Chargers should really have a much better record than they do.

San Francisco (6-3) 20 @ New Orleans (7-2) 27: This is one of the three marquis games of the week. The Saints are coming off a big win over the Cowboys, while the 'Niners have to go on the road after a disappointing loss at home to the Panthers. The Saints are very difficult to beat in the Superdome, so I'll take them to win in their own building.

Green Bay (5-4) 19 @ New York Giants (3-6) 24: This is another tough pick. With Aaron Rodgers at the helm, this would be a no-brainer for the Packers. But without him, and with the Giants on a roll, I think Manning can lead New York to a victory, even if they aren't a particularly good home team.

Minnesota (2-7) 17 @ Seattle (9-1) 30: The Vikings are in for a long afternoon in Seattle. The Seahawks are almost impossible to beat at home, and the Vikings might not have enough weapons to pull the upset.

Kansas City (9-0) 21 @ Denver (8-1) 24: Neither of these teams has beaten anyone of note yet, with the Broncos losing to Indianapolis for their lone loss. Peyton Manning was hobbled this week, but should be ready to go. This is a big game in the AFC, and I'll go with Denver to hold off the Chiefs despite Kansas City holding the Denver offense in check.


New England (7-2) 23 @ Carolina (6-3) 27: The Panthers have come alive and found out how to win. Cam Newton is playing well and their defense is making it difficult for opponents to score. I know the Patriots have found a way to keep winning, despite injuries on offense.  I like Carolina at home in a big Monday night game.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

THURSDAY NFL PICK

Indianapolis (6-3) 31 @ Tennessee (4-5) 23: Both teams are coming off crushing losses, with the Colts getting pummeled by the Rams. Tennessee gave the Jaguars their first win of the season. I don't know about the Colts. They've beaten San Francisco, Seattle and Denver, but they've scored only 37 points in losses to Miami, San Diego and St. Louis. Which team will show up tonight? It's hard to say. Tennessee's loss to Jacksonville was devastating for the Titans, not just because the Jags came into the game with a winless record, but because it dropped Tennessee to 4 - 5 as opposed to 5 - 4, putting them into an even  greater must win situation if they lose this game to the Colts. Without starting QB Jake Locker, I think it will be difficult for the Titans to defeat the Colts, even though Indy heads on the road with a short week. I'm going with the notion that Indianapolis is too good of a team to lose two in a row to teams they should beat. 

COLLEGE FOOTBALL WEEK 12 PICKS

Every conference seems to have at least one big game this weekend, with the Pac -12 and Big 12 having more than their share. Stanford, coming off its big win over Oregon, must travel to Los Angeles to take on a suddenly resurgent USC. Oregon hosts a dangerous Utah team, while Arizona State tries to stay hot in the desert against tough Oregon State. Meanwhile, UCLA tries to stay alive in the Pac-12 South, hosting Washington in the Rose Bowl. In the Big 12, Baylor tries to keep their season on a roll against struggling Texas Tech. Texas hosts Oklahoma State in a game where a Cowboys loss probably eliminates them from consideration for the conference crown. In the ACC, Miami travels to Duke in an attempt to derail the surprising Blue Devils as both teams try to stay even with Virginia Tech in the Coastal Division, assuming Georgia Tech can't upset Clemson.  The Tigers are hoping to win out, keeping a BCS at-large berth alive. In the Big Ten, Nebraska hosts very surprising Michigan State, who with a win would take control of the Legends Division.  A Cornhusker win would keep more than one team alive, including Minnesota. The SEC West appears to be coming down to a showdown between Auburn and Alabama on Nov. 30, as long as the Tigers can hold off Georgia this week. So you better fire up the DVR and fill up the cooler, because it's going to be a long day of football.

Overall: 155 - 47

Georgia Tech (6-3) 24 @ (8) Clemson (8-1) 37: Somehow, after losing three games in a row earlier in the season, then following that up with three wins, the Yellow Jackets head to Clemson still in contention in the ACC Coastal.  The Tigers' only stumble was against Florida State, not exactly embarrassing, considering how the Seminoles have rolled through their schedule.  I'll take Clemson to end Georgia Tech's title hopes.

Washington (6-3) 27 @ (13) UCLA (7-2) 31:  The Bruins control their own destiny in the Pac-12 South, but can't afford a loss Friday night. If they end up looking ahead to next week's game against Arizona State, the Huskies could pull the upset.

(1) Alabama (9-0) 31 @ Mississippi State (4-5) 13: Alabama just keeps winning, and one more on Saturday will set up a winner take all game with Auburn on November 30.  That Crimson Tide defense is absolutely stifling, leading the nation on points against, despite giving up 42 to Texas A&M earlier in the season. The Bulldogs don't have the firepower necessary to challenge them.

Syracuse (5-4)  17 @ (2) Florida State (9-0)  41: There may be some distraction in the Seminole locker room around the sexual assault incident that somehow is involving redshirt freshman QB Jameis Winston. But Florida State should have way too much for Syracuse to contend with, especially in Tallahassee.

(3) Ohio State (9-0) 38 @ Illinois (3-6) 13: The Illini are winless in the Big Ten and that won't change this week. The Buckeyes are currently on the outside looking in as far as the BCS Championship is concerned, but history would illustrate that if they keep winning, there is a very good chance of playing for a national championship.

(4) Stanford (8-1) 27 @ USC (7-3) 28: What a great game! USC has totally turned it around under interim coach Ed Orgeron. I would have to put the Pac-12 ahead of the SEC this season in terms of difficulty, mainly because Florida and Georgia are down a bit and with the Trojans' resurgence. Despite Stanford's win over Oregon, I like USC in this one.

Texas Tech (7-3) 20 @ (5) Baylor (8-0) 37: Baylor is definitely for real and Texas Tech is reeling. I can't go against the Bears, especially at home. I don't see Florida State and Ohio losing a game down the stretch, but Alabama could be surprised and Stanford has a difficult road to navigate, as does Baylor. But just like Ohio State, there's only one scoreboard they need to be looking at, and that's theirs.

Utah (4-5)  17 @ (6) Oregon (8-1) 37: The Ducks should be able to rebound against the Utes, whose only victory in the conference is against the team that beat Oregon. That won't matter in this one.

(25) Georgia (6-3) 30 @ (7) Auburn (9-1) 34:  I'm not sure how Georgia is ranked in the top 25, but that will surely come to an end this week. Auburn is hitting on all cylinders and get a week off before facing Alabama in a huge Iron Bowl game on November 30. Georgia is physical and can pose some problems for Auburn, but I'm not sure the Bulldogs can score enough to stay with the Tigers.

Florida (4-5) 20 @ (10) South Carolina (7-2) 28: South Carolina doesn't have to leave Columbia for the rest of the season and is still in the hunt for the SEC East title, especially since they hold the tiebreaker over Missouri. This is the Gamecocks' last conference game, while Missouri still has to travel to Ole Miss and host Texas A&M after an open date this week. Florida is having a horrendous season, but their standards. I wouldn't count the Gamecocks out of taking on Alabama or Auburn in the SEC championship game.

(12) Oklahoma State (8-1) 35 @ (24) Texas (7-2) 31: This should be a good game that will either help clarify the Big 12 race or make it more of a dogfight. A loss by Oklahoma State would all but eliminate them from consideration, while a Cowboy win keeps them in the hunt. This is a coin flip for me, but for some reason, I think Texas is ready for a stumble after their six wins in a row.

(16) Michigan State (8-1) 24 @ Nebraska (7-2) 20: Michigan State's defense is about as good as any in the country aside from Alabama. Nebraska has had to win some close ones. Defense usually travels better than offense. I really like the Spartans on the road.

(17) UCF (7-1) 51 @ Temple (1-8) 10: UCF is the class of their conference and should definitely be ranked ahead of Louisville in the human polls. Maybe after Houston beats Louisville this week, that will happen.

Iowa State (1-8) 10 @ (18) Oklahoma (7-2) 38: Not much of a contest here as Oklahoma tries to somehow stay mathematically eligible in the Big 12.

Oregon State (6-3) 30 @ (19) Arizona State (7-2) 38: This should be a very good football game, with both teams being able to put points on the board. However, I'm going to take the Sun Devils at home.

Houston (7-2) 31 @ (20) Louisville (8-1) 27: Both of these teams lost to UCF. I don't think Louisville is anywhere close to being the 20th best team in the country, but I think Houston might be.

Indiana (4-5) 13 @ (22) Wisconsin (7-2) 30: It'll take a miraculous collapse by Ohio State for Wisconsin to have a chance in the Leaders division of the Big Ten. But all the Badgers can do is take care of business and hope that miracle occurs.

(23) Miami, FL (7-2) 30 @ Duke (7-2) 27: So Duke beat Virginia Tech and Virginia Tech beat Miami, therefore...Miami beats Duke. Duke's below standard facilities offer no home field advantage for the Blue Devils. I think the Hurricanes' defense will be somewhat motivated by their dismal performance against the Hokies last week. No real logic here.

Maryland (5-4) 12 @ Virginia Tech (7-3) 27: Maryland has looked great at times this season and Virginia Tech has struggled on offense for much of the year. If those things occur Saturday, the Terrapins can pull the upset in Blacksburg. I don't see it. The Hokie defense should be too much for the Maryland offense. I'll be in Lane Stadium for the first time in fifteen years to witness it.

TCU (4-6) 20 @ Kansas State (5-4) 27: This is a down season for the Horned Frogs and K-State's defense has kept the Wildcats in bowl contention. I like the home team to prevail.

Michigan (6-3) 23 @ Northwestern (4-5) 27: I think Northwestern is too good to lose six in a row, and Michigan is just not consistent on the road. I'll take the Wildcats to hold serve in Evanston.

Washington State (4-5) 31 @ Arizona (6-3) 34: Okay, so we have three games in a row with a Wildcat team. I might as well make it three for three. I like the Wildcats from Arizona, especially at home.


Kentucky (2-7) 17 @ Vanderbilt (5-4) 26: The Commodores are looking to become bowl eligible. They should get it done against a pretty lousy Kentucky team. Mark Stoops' first year as head coach has been pretty dismal. Is that such a surprise? When was the last time the Wildcats (really, another Wildcat team?) were relevant in football? It won't improve much on Saturday.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

WEEK 10 NFL RECAP

I had to rally with four consecutive correct picks to salvage a .500 weekend. But really, who would have thought the 'Niners, Colts and Titans would go down at home? Granted, I was an idiot for picking the Falcons. That won't happen again.

Last week: 7 -7
Overall:  89 - 57

Washington (3 - 5) 27 @ Minnesota (1 - 7) 19: The Redskins offense looked decent, but the Vikings were able to put too much pressure on RGIiI. It looks almost impossible for Washington to make it back to the playoffs, but last year they had the same record and ran the table. Can it happen again? Probably not. No. 27 - 34.

Seattle (8-1) 20 @ Atlanta (2-6) 27: Well, the Falcons, as far as I'm concerned, are done. What a disappointing season. As for Seattle, they get a big road win to stay in front to get home field advantage in the NFC. No. 33 - 10.

Detroit (5-3) 27 @ Chicago (5-3) 28: Oh well! whiffed on the first three picks of the week. However, it was as close as predicted. No. 21 - 19.

Philadelphia (4-5) 27 @ Green Bay (5-3) 24: The Eagles are coming on, setting up a good race with the Cowboys, and possibly even the Giants for the NFC East crown. Correct. 27 - 13.

Jacksonville (0-8) 19 @ Tennessee (4-4) 27: Well, I predicted the Jags would get a win or two, but I didn't think it would be in this game. Oh well, a bad week just got worse. No. 29 - 27.

St. Louis (3-6) 20 @ Indianapolis (6-2) 31: Could it get worse? Of course it can. Are you kidding me? How do the Colts get scorched by the Rams at home? Really? How do you beat the Broncos, 'Niners and Seahawks and lose to St. Louis? No. 38 - 8.

Oakland (3-5) 17 @ New York Giants (2-6) 26: The Giants are suddenly alive and kicking, now within a game of Dallas and Philadelphia in the loss column of the NFC East and tied with Washington. This will be quite a race. Correct. 20 - 24.

Buffalo (3-6) 17 @ Pittsburgh (2-6) 20: Just like the Giants, the Steelers are suddenly back in the race, despite early season difficulties.  Seven games to go and anything could happen. Correct. 10 - 23.

Cincinnati (6-3) 27 @ Baltimore (3-5) 17: I should have stuck with the experts. Now the AFC North is wide open. No. 17 - 20.

Carolina (5-3) 20 @ San Francisco (6-2) 28: The Panthers are suddenly in the mix, and not just for a playoff spot. This team goes into San Francisco and knocks off a hot 'Niners squad.  Just another bad pick in a bad week. No. 10 - 9.

Houston (2-6)  17 @ Arizona (4-4) 27: The Cardinals helped me get back on track with an expected win, but it was still close. Correct. 24 - 27.

Denver (7-1) 37 @ San Diego (4-4) 27: The Chargers made it close in the end, but Peyton Manning's four TD passes were enough for the Broncos to prevail. Correct. 28 - 20.

Dallas (5-4) 27 @ New Orleans (6-2) 35: I thought the Saints would get an easy win, but this was ridiculous. Jerry Jones doesn't have a clue on how to build a team in the salary cap era. Do yourself a favor, Jerry. Fire your GM. Oh, that's you. Well, good luck, then. Correct. 17 - 49.


Miami (4-4) 23 @ Tampa Bay (0-8) 24: As ugly as this game was, it was also pretty exciting down the stretch. The Bucs found a way to finally get their first win and the Dolphins couldn't hold a late lead to give me four correct picks in a row to end the weekend. Correct. 19 - 22.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL WEEK 11 RECAP

Oregon just can't seem to find a way to compete with the more physical teams, so their national championship hopes have once again, barring a miracle, been dashed.  With the way Florida State and Alabama are playing, it would be very improbable for the Ducks to play their way back into the picture, unless, of course, USC stuns Stanford, putting Oregon in position to get into the Pac-12 championship game.  And then we find Auburn on a collision course with Alabama in the Iron Bowl, with the winner most likely advancing to the SEC championship game. With Virginia Tech's impressive win over Miami Saturday night, that defense might stand a chance of slowing down Florida State should they meet in the ACC championship game. Regarding my picks, this was one of the worst weeks of the season, but I still called a couple of upsets.

Last Week: 14 - 7
Overall:  155 - 47

(3) Oregon (8-0)  30 @ (5) Stanford (7-1) 24:  I guess history repeats itself.  No. 20 - 26.

 (10) Oklahoma (7-1) 28 @  (6) Baylor (7-0)  31: Baylor's for real and needs to get some serious consideration in the BCS. Correct. 12 - 41.

(13) LSU (7-2) 30 @ (1) Alabama (8-0) 27: Too many critical turnovers doomed the Tigers. Then the Tide just wore them down. No.  17 - 38.

(2) Florida State (8-0) 34 @ Wake Forest (4-5) 16: Florida State scores at will. This one was over before the Seminoles' bus engine cooled off and they could have put up 80 if they'd wanted. The dream game of the season, now that Oregon has lost? How about Florida State - Alabama.  Correct. 59 - 3.

(8) Missouri (8-1) 37 @ Kentucky (2-6) 17:  The good news is you're a head football coach in the SEC. The bad news is you're the coach of Kentucky. I don't care how good a coach you are, without players, forget about it. Correct.  48 - 17.

(9) Auburn (8-1) 20 @ Tennessee (4-5) 21: I totally whiffed on this one. Auburn's for real and I'm convinced now that they can give number one Alabama a run for their money in a couple of weeks.  No. 55 - 23.

Virginia Tech (6-3) 19 @ (11) Miami (7-1) 17: This was the best offensive performance by the Hokies in recent memory.  And take away a couple of big plays by the Hurricanes and this one is even a greater blowout. If Miami regroups and beats Duke, the Hokies will be taking on FSU in the ACC championship game, given they take care of business against Maryland and Virginia. Correct. 42 - 24.

Kansas (2-6) 13 @ (14) Oklahoma State (7-1) 40: No surprise with this one. Correct. 6 - 42.

Mississippi State (4-5) 27 @ (15) Texas A&M (7-2) 38: Despite being a one-dimensional team, the Aggies prevailed.  Correct. 41 - 51.

(16) Fresno State (8-0) 37 @ Wyoming (4-4) 30: This may have been the most impressive win of the season for Fresno State, a team I think is obscenely overrated. Correct. 48 - 10.

(19) UCLA (6-2) 31 @ Arizona (6-2) 27: The Bruins won just as predicted. There are plenty of big games left in the Pac-12, so UCLA isn't out of the hunt.  Correct. 31 - 26.

Houston (7-1)  30 @ (21) UCF (6-1) 32: UCF plays more like an ACC or SEC team and now has a big leg up on the American Athletic Conference's BCS bid. Correct. 14 - 19.

(22) Arizona State  38 (6-2) @ Utah (4-4) 24: The Sun Devils escaped Salt Lake City with a win, but not before scoring the game's last 13 points in the fourth quarter. Correct. 20 -19.

(23) Notre Dame (7-2) 27 @ Pittsburgh (4-4) 17: I wish I'd predicted this one, but I didn't. That should put an end to the Irish's BCS bowl game chances. No. 21 - 28.

BYU (6-2) 27 @ (24) Wisconsin (6-2) 31: This one wasn't as close as I thought, but BYU still gave the Badgers a game. Correct. 17 - 27.

Kansas State (4-4) 24 @ (25) Texas Tech (7-2) 28: I was wrong. The Red Raiders aren't really all that good, at not as good as their record would indicate. No. 49 - 26.

Syracuse (4-4) 20 @ Maryland (5-3) 28: I just picked Jeckyll instead of Hyde, I guess.  No.  20 - 3.

Texas (6-2) 34 @ West Virginia (4-5) 23: It took overtime, but the Longhorns kept their winning streak alive, as well as a shot at the league title. The Big 12 race will probably go down to the final games. Correct. 47 - 40 OT.

Nebraska (6-2) 24 @ Michigan (6-2) 27: It's hard to figure these two teams, but Nebraska stayed alive for a big showdown with Michigan State this week. No. 17 - 13.

Colorado (3-5) 20 @ Washington (5-3) 31: The Huskies continued their rebound in a big way against another overmatched foe. Correct. 7 - 59.


Arkansas (3-6) 20 @ Ole Miss (5-3) 28: This game was actually winnable by the Razorbacks, but they're  having difficulty getting over the hump. Ole Miss is just a little too good to make mistakes against and still pull out a victory. Correct.  24 - 34.