11W Weekend Update Sponsored By Oktoberfest

By Luke on September 30, 2010 at 2:02p

Guten tag! It's a celebration, y'all. Oktoberfests internationally are a foot, and as such, we're kicking things off right. We're also having a New Orleans funeral marking the end of my reign as anything remotely resembling a picking-college-football-games-against-the-spread guru. After racking up a nearly 72% success rate against the spread last year, your boy is crawling punch drunk around .500. Last week was no better, when for the second time in as many weeks, I put together a turbo underwhelming 3-5 effort. Our little (for entertainment purposes only, of course) exercise is now exactly 16-16 on the season. We may be bowl eligible, but we're flirting dangerously with Shreveport at this point. However, like any good degenerate gambler will tell you, the only way to get out of a hole is to bet your way out. Ein, zwei, drei, prost!

National Games

#16. Miami at Clemson (+3.5) 12:00 - ESPN2 (HD) & ESPN 3D

It seems like Miami is running into a litmus test game week in-week out these days. The 'Canes face another potentially season definer heading to Death Valley to take on Dabo. DABO. DABO!. Kyle Parker and the Clemson offense are still looking to make amends with the football gods for failing to convert on that third down in overtime that would've won them the Auburn game. Despite my looking every bit the chump I've been in picking games in 2K10 by taking the Wannstache a week back, I can't not pick against a Miami team I still think is very mortal (even in lieu of the SOS consequences it would have on the Bucks). Clemson 24 - Miami 21. *gulp*

#8. Oklahoma vs #23. Texas (+3.5), from Dallas, TX 3:30 - ABC (HD) / ESPN (HD) (Regional)

The Red River Rivalry takes a bit of a somber tone following a terrifying incident on Texas' campus this past Monday. The game also comes on the heels of Texas laying the early front runner for egg of the year on the season against Pistol Rick's UCLA Bruins and Oklahoma letting an evidently mediocre Cincinnati side hang around for 4 quarters. The spread speaks to OU being the better team (which as an Austin resident and tangential ancillary Horns supporter have been preaching from the mountain top all season long; to much applause believe me), but Texas should find the rivalry mojo necessary to make this one interesting. Texas' offense may ultimately keep the Horns from being able to win this one, but OU's proclivity to cough up the rock in their own could make this one a bit of a tickle fight. Despite Texas' D being the better of the two (and usually the tie breaker in these sorts of situations), I can't in good conscience overlook how anemic the Texas offense has looked all season. Take OU, 27-21.

Virginia Tech at #24. North Carolina State (+4) 3:30 - ABC (HD) (Regional)

My zombie love affair with VT rages on as the Hokies travel to Raleigh to do it up with Russell Wilson and the 'Pack. Tom O'Brien engaged in a game with Bud Foster could very easily turn into a Penn State-Ohio State 2008 style game, but Russell Wilson may just be too skilled to keep this one too low scoring. Vegas knows their stuff as per usual though, and VT, despite the egg laid against JMU and the tough defeat against Boise, enter this one as four point favorites. To boot, NC State's win streak has seemingly come on borrowed time, so take the back-from-the-grave Hokies, 17-10.

#7. Florida at #1. Alabama (-8) 8:00 - CBS (HD)

OMG ESSS-EEEEEE-CCCCEEE speeeeeed. Florida finally looked like many thought they'd look last week against Kentucky, but will have to prove that wasn't merely the result of going against, well, Kentucky. Trey Burton appears to have something of a baby Tebow game, but it's not going to come nearly as easily in a road night affair with the Tide. Alabama's D, while talented, is still fairly green in the grand scheme of things in terms of experience. While there's next to no chance Florida curtails Alabama's rushing attack, they may be able to put together a game plan that at least allows them to keep the Tide honest and try to coerce QB Greg McElroy into mistakes (which he's been virtually free of in the early goings). While my head says Bama, it also said UF was the better, more complete team going into the season. Plus, Pirate Cap'n Mike Leach likes the Gators. Live dangerously: UF 33 - Alabama 30.

#9. Stanford at #3. Oregon (-7) 8:00 - ABC (HD) / ESPN2 (HD)

OMG Pac Teeeeen speeeeeed. The Pac-10/12-to-be's definitely made their claim to being the nation's premiere football conference through Week 5 and now we'll get a chance to see as two of the more compelling teams in the country get to go head to head in the same time slot as two SEC juggernauts. While it's pretty unlikely folks in the deep south (or northeast/midwest for that matter) get up for and tune in a Cardinal/Ducks contest over a UF/Bama one, this has every bit the potential to be the more compelling of the two. Stanford will bring their Michigan-in-1986 act against Oregon's WHOOOOOOOOOOOO-ffense in what should be one heck of a watch. While Oregon should have enough to get the W, I'm thinking this one stays close. Oregon wins, 34-31.

Big Ten Games

#13. Wisconsin at #22. Michigan State (+2) 3:30 - ABC (HD) / ESPN (HD) (Regional)

In Mark Dantonio's return to coaching, Bret Bielema brings arguably the best offensive line in the country to East Lansing. While Sparty is presently allowing 253 passing yards per game, it'll be up to Scott Tolzien to take advantage of Nick Toon and the rest of the options around him. If the Badgers elect to turn this into an old school Big Ten game, the Spartans may not have quite the grit to grind this one out. While MSU definitely wins the QB battle with Kirk Cousins, Wisconsin should have the road hustle to make this one go their way. Take the Badgers, 20-17.

#17. Michigan at Indiana (+10) 3:30 - ESPNU (HD)

In a contrast of styles, Michigan, Shoelaceless Joenard Robinson, and Michigan's high octane offense face Big Ten opposition for the first time on the season going against Bill Lynch's pistolwhipfense and QB Ben Chappell. While Chappell is not even in the same universe as an athlete as D-Rob, he is effective enough of a game manager to continuously put the Hoosiers in position to put up points on the Wolverines and keep this potentially closer than the experts are projecting. While it's still impossible to know what we have in Michigan until we see them against (at least) the likes of a Penn State or Northwestern, their bevvy of undersized 3-stars should be enough to outlast Indiana's warchest of 1 and 2's. Take the Wolverines to win (and cover), 38-24.

#25. Penn State at #18. Iowa (-7) 8:00 - ESPN (HD)

PSU's young QB Rob Bolden enter this one inexplicably having only been sacked once all year. However, this Iowa d-line could rival, if not surpass, Alabama's in terms of the quality of opposition (and Alabama was without star DT Marcell Dareus). If Iowa can find a way to get pressure on Bolden and force him into rookie mistakes, this thing could get ugly. Evan Royster finally elected to show up for the first time all season last week and if Penn State can get anything going in terms of runningthe ball they may be able to keep this one within grasp. While an upset would do a lot for the Baby Nittany Lions, expect Iowa to be too much this early in their development. Put your duckets on the Hawkeyes, 27-17.


Comments Show All Comments

SouthBayBuckeye's picture

mmm big ten play. when i can rot against michigan and not worry about "conference presitige" and so forth.

Banned from ATO since June 3rd 2PMish PST

M Man's picture

mmm big ten play. when i can rot against michigan and not worry about "conference presitige" and so forth.

You can rot against Michigan.  All your typos are belong to us.

Matt's picture

Luke you need to stop picking against Miami. Or, rather, keep picking against them, because Clemson now has the Luke kiss of death now and we need Da U to keep winning to stave off any Boise State run on our #2 slot.  Miami is a legit team and the ACC will come down to the VA Tech game in late November.

Jason Priestas's picture

I agree. Miami will be a top six team at the end of the year.

Luke's picture

Guess I still don't see it. They should've been blown out if not for special teams by us and played really sloppily against Pitt.

Matt's picture

I don't buy the argument that the Bucks would have destroyed the Canes if not for special teams, because the same could be said for OSU -- that we would have lost handily to Da U if we didn't keep intercepting Harris at opportune moments.  Whether big special teams plays or timely interceptions, that's just football and why you play the game.

And if Miami can play sloppily against Pitt in PA and still win 31-3 -- and that game wasn't even as close as the score indicates -- then I'll take that sort of sloppy play every time.

All the Canes need to do is calm Harris down.  If he just makes good decisions about where to distribute the ball, Miami is a BCS bowl team.  Their defense has more talent than almost any other defense in NCAA, and they have any number of world class speed guys on offense.  Randy Shannon just needs to make the players come together as a team.

Luke's picture

Alternatively: a 12 point loss to a Top 3 team is their ceiling, they'll never get Harris right, and they'll lose 2-3 games against teams they're more talented than. Randy Shannon is barely above .500 for his career for a reason.

Matt's picture

Maybe, but at least Randy is above 0.500.

"Our little (for entertainment purposes only, of course) exercise is now exactly 16-16 on the season."  <----OH BURN IT BURNS THE FACE

Matt's picture

Luke, internet flame wars don't work if you take the high road on me.


I agree... Miami is not a mentally prepared team and the coaching is poor.  Pitt kept it close in the first half and then just collapsed in the 2nd half......   not to mention that Ja-foury Harris is on track to beat his 17 int's from last season.  I think Seantrelle Henderson working with the 1st team shows that Miami thinks they need to be a run-first offense to take the ball out of Ja-foury's hands.  Miami is gonna lose 2-3 more games this season...  Clemson, FlaSt. VaTech

Is it Saturday Yet's picture

That's a pretty sweet stein.....

Chris Lauderback's picture

If by stein, you mean "rack", I completely agree.

osujake9's picture

yea i didn't even see the stein.

jfunk's picture

Hopefuly she's still down there Saturday when I head to Munich. Although I don't think my wife will approve.

Scotch: It may be too early to drink it, yes; but people it is never to early to think about it.

Buckeyebrowny919's picture

sunglasses, my man...sunglasses

To give anything less than your best, is to sacrifice the gift - Steve Prefontaine

Chris Lauderback's picture

Exactly. Maybe even old school mirrored Ray Ban's in this case...I still have a pair in case of such an emergency.

Is it Saturday Yet's picture

I kind of have a feeling, and it is just a feeling, that 'Bama is going to curb stomp the Gators....

Leanenaud's picture

I hope so! I live in Tallahassee and there are a ton of Gator fans here as you would expect. I would like nothing more than to see some select co-workers cry on Monday. Roll Tide! Go Noles! And above all GO BUCKS!

DaveM's picture

Anyone coming to Champaign this weekend?  Oktoberfest in downtown Urbana!

btalbert25's picture

I have a feeling Indiana covers.  I also don't think Bama and Florida will be close, but think for some reason Bama struggles in Columbia.  I think Miami wins again.  I don't think it was neccessarily Ohio State ineptitude that resulted in 5 FGs in the game, as much as I think Miami has a damn good D.  I wouldn't touch the OU Texas game.  I think OU, but it's hard to say if they'll show up or not.


Miami D is legit for sure..... Ja-foury Harris is their biggest detriment.  3 scholarship QB's left the program in 2 years and the only viable option right now other than Harris is Alonzo Highsmith's kid who was not recrutied as a QB.  No one talks about that... how can the U only have 1 highly recrutied QB on the roster?????  

slippy's picture

Can we stop talking about how good Wisconsin's O-line is?  Go watch our tape of last year.  We sacked Tolzien a lot of times (I don't remember the number).  He was pressured into throwing 2 pick sixes.  They may be able to run block but they are below average in pass blocking.

Run_Fido_Run's picture

Good point. I always be worried about any trip to Madison, but there are reassuring signs:

Wisconsin's offense was ranked #1 by College Football News going into the season, but has been inconsistent so far. They're pass blocking better, but Tolzien seems to have regressed anyway. Maybe Bielema is just a mediocre coach.

Meanwhile, Wisconsin's defense wasn't stellar to begin with and then lost its best player for the year.      

Buckeyebrowny919's picture

Hayden Panattiere + cleavage + beer + sick ass stein = probably stared at that picture a lil too long for work standards...::droooool::

To give anything less than your best, is to sacrifice the gift - Steve Prefontaine

matti's picture

i for one hate watching esss eeeee ceeee crap football (actually sat next to some sec southern football fat ass at the directional mich game)  and i'm looking forward to trying to find the oregon stanford game with nd bc somehow being on tv as well seriously nd bc 8pm abc tell wtf me this is a typo !!!!!

btalbert25's picture

I honestly dont' care much for their games either, the games take an extra hour from all the penalties. 

Run_Fido_Run's picture

I used to love watching SEC night games back in the mid-90s to early-00s, before the hype machine got completely out of control. Now, the quality of SEC games has really dropped while the annoyance factor has jumped through the roof. It'll probably turn out to be a good thing for the BT, though, that espn is helping to ruin the SEC product and "brand."  

Northbrook's picture

I have misplaced my lederhosen.

iball's picture

Breakdown of Braxton Millers HH Wayne Warriors face Trey DePriests, Springfield Wild cats. FYI, Miller hasn't attempted a rush since returning from injury in Week 3. The team has outscored opponents 96 - 17 since.


“There’s one thing I have learned through all my adventures and conquests - it’s that some people are just wired for success. I had no choice when it came to being great - I just am great.” – Kenny Powers