Good morning everybody - it's just after 9:00 a.m. in San Marcos, America as I go out on a limb for the sixth straight week. The NFL limb broke under the weight of my bad predictions last week as I had a losing record on my professional props for the first time this year. I'm not all that upset about it though, since I was rooting against one of my picks anyway... ;) To do a quick recap, I was 3-1 on my college selections and 1-2 on my NFL attempts last week. Let's start with my college loss, where I was doomed to lose my Kansas State pick if you've been following this blog regularly. I came through with flying colors, jinxing the 8th-ranked Wildcats, who got crushed by the 9th-ranked Sooners in Manhattan (my most sincere apologies Kathryn...). Two of my three victories were decisive, as #14 Nebraska turned in an impressive 24-3 victory over #11 Michigan State at home, while Notre Dame had a resounding 56-14 win over Navy in South Bend. For the record, I don't think that I've been wrong on a Nebraska game this season (hopefully that helps make up for missing every single K-State game...). My third victory in the college arena last week came in the game that I most regret missing so far this year, as Stanford downed USC 56-48 in triple-overtime. My college record currently stands at 15-8 this season, my NFL record at 10-5. The NFL pick that I managed to get right was the Dallas/Philly game under 51, as the Eagles won 34-7. The game that I was happy to lose was the Patriots - 2 1/2 against the Steelers, as Pittsburgh won the game 25-17 (YES!!!). The game that I got slaughtered in was the Cardinals and Ravens staying under 43 1/2 points, as Baltimore had a 30-27 comeback victory.
When I titled this post 'Outstanding Football Weekend', I was referring to the potentially great games that we have ahead of us this weekend, and not my picks last weekend. I am going to start with my NFL selections this week, teasing you until the very end so that you have to read through my whole post to get to the LSU/Alabama prediction. We both know that you have the ability to thwart this strategy by simply scrolling down the screen, but you're on the honor system here... ;) Perusing the lines, I have to say that my strongest play would be the under in the Bears/Eagles game at 47 1/2. The Bears have looked horrible at times on offense this season, but their defense is decent. The Eagles defense looked good after the bye week, and a little nasty weather in Philly on Monday night wouldn't hurt here either... I would also take the under 51 in the Giants/Patriots game. Nicks is supposed to be out for New York, and while Bradshaw is expected to play, he has a broken bone in his foot. The Giants themselves have a pretty good defense, enough with a potentially anemic offense to keep this under I'm thinking. This pick is going to be against a preseason prediction that I made this year, but I am going to take the Chiefs to cover the -4 at home against the Dolphins. I predicted that Kansas City wouldn't make the playoffs before the season started (which I'm still sticking with, by the way, as their Week 11-15 schedule is brutal), and now they're in a 3-way tie atop their division with San Diego and Oakland. Way to handle the snap Rivers..... Anyway, hapless Miami coming into Arrowhead... Chiefs!
And now a menu of enticing college games this weekend. I'll start with my friend's Notre Dame pick, and I will take the Irish at Wake Forest. Very decisive victory against the Naval Academy last Saturday, which I didn't see a single snap of, but the 42-point win seems to indicate that they are over the loss to the Trojans... #14 Kansas State @ #3 Oklahoma State: To get back in the good graces of Wildcats fans everywhere, I will pick against the Purple. I think that the Cowboys simply have too much firepower for K-State, but if I do miss this Wildcats pick as I've been prone to, it will be major news and there will be much celebration in Idaho from the Boise fans... #9 South Carolina @ #7 Arkansas: Let me say right here that I think the Razorbacks are very lucky to be in the Top 10 still. They were very fortunate to come from behind in both the Texas A&M game earlier this year and in the Vanderbilt game last week. There is no way that they should just barely be winning against Vandy. With that being said, the Gamecocks team that is coming to town is without the starting quarterback and the superstar tailback that they began the season with. The Razorbacks are at home against a short-handed Gamecocks squad, so I'm picking Arkansas. #1 LSU @ #2 Alabama: Not much at stake here, eh?... :) Both teams are 8-0 and each program has been dominant in recent memory. I was truly impressed by the Tigers victory against Oregon earlier in the season, and I was practically stunned that Tennessee went to halftime tied 6-6 with Bama a few weeks ago. I know that the game is in Tuscaloosa, but if LSU is able to slow down Trent Richardson, I don't know what else Bama can bring on offense against the Tigers defense. In Las Vegas I could get 5 points with the Tigers, but even straight-up, I'm still going to go with LSU...
I hope that all of you enjoy what should be a great football weekend - see ya again on Monday!