We're coming off one of our better weeks as three different staff members hit on eight of their ten submissions. An uncharacteristic 4-6 showing from David Regimbal has him falling out of first place on the season as that prestigious honor now belongs to Ramzy and Andy Vance; who are both up to 58 percent.
Ohio State had no problems covering the 28.5-point spread against Northwestern. The 52-3 throttling in Evanston could have been even worse had Ryan Day not taken his foot off the gas a bit. Jones and David Wertheim were the only staff members taking the Wildcats to cover.
Wisconsin's loss to the Illini was the story of the weekend, but a massive 31-point spread had most of our pickers rolling with Lovie Smith to cover at home. If only we could go back in time and put a few Benjamins on Illinois winning straight up. That would have resulted in quite a nifty little payday.
Everyone nailed the Gators covering against South Carolina, and the same can be said for Oregon (-3) over the Huskies. Kevin was the lone man siding with Washington and the points. The Utah/Arizona State matchup was the one that gave us some problems. The Utes were a 13-point home favorite against a solid Sun Devil squad, and Chris was the only man taking Utah to cover. The ended up being a 21-3 win (and cover) for the home squad.
Michigan put up a solid fight against Penn State. Most liked the Nittany Lions to win by more than nine, but it turned out to be a seven-point home win thanks to a Wolverine comeback. Harbaugh's crew surged back after going down 21-0, and they nearly tied things up late had it not been for an unfortunate drop in the end zone.
Week nine certainly doesn't have the season's best slate, but the focus shifts back to the Midwest with several noteworthy contests in the Big Ten.
- Reminder: All of our submissions are against the spread rather than a straight pick'em. The lines are from www.sportsbook.ag and are collected on Mondays of each week. There's always a chance that the lines will move in the days leading up to kickoff.
|#3 Ohio State (-14.5) vs. #13 Wisconsin||OSU||OSU||OSU||WISC||OSU||OSU||WISC||OSU||OSU|
|#20 Iowa (-10.5) @ Northwestern||NW||NW||IOWA||IOWA||IOWA||IOWA||IOWA||IOWA||IOWA|
|Liberty (-7.5) @ Rutgers||LIB||LIB||RUT||RUT||RUT||LIB||LIB||RUT||RUT|
|#5 Oklahoma (-23.5) @ Kansas State||KSU||KSU||KSU||KSU||OKLA||OKLA||OKLA||OKLA||KSU|
|#17 Minnesota (-16) vs. Maryland||MINN||MARY||MINN||MARY||MARY||MINN||MARY||MINN||MARY|
|#2 LSU (-11.5) vs. #9 Auburn||LSU||LSU||AUB||LSU||AUB||LSU||LSU||AUB||AUB|
|#15 Texas (-1.5) @ TCU||TCU||TEX||TCU||TEX||TEX||TEX||TEX||TEX||TCU|
|#6 Penn State (-6.5) @ Michigan State||MSU||PSU||PSU||PSU||PSU||PSU||PSU||PSU||PSU|
|#1 Alabama (-32.5) vs. Arkansas||ARK||ARK||BAMA||ARK||BAMA||BAMA||ARK||BAMA||BAMA|
|#19 Michigan (-1) vs. #8 Notre Dame||MICH||ND||MICH||ND||MICH||ND||MICH||ND||MICH|
Things will start off with a bang at high noon on Saturday. The Badgers bring the nation's top defense to Columbus as the Buckeyes are sure to be tested once again. Wisconsin hasn't had the most formidable schedule, but the defense and ground games have been superb all season long.
The Illini forced some big-time turnovers that helped turn the tide last week. Can the Buckeyes do the same while containing Jonathan Taylor? The home team is favored by just about two touchdowns, and a couple of our pickers like the Badgers to cover.
Without question the top game of the weekend will go down in Piscataway. Is this rock bottom for Rutgers? The Scarlet Knights are a home underdog against Hugh Freeze and the mighty Liberty Flames. I'm not sure if I can name a single player on Rutgers' team at this point or identify its acting head coach. Our team is split on the 7.5-point spread.
Minnesota continues to be one of the season's biggest surprises and it will look to stay unbeaten against Maryland at home. The Terps have been on a downward after the hot start. Rutgers is the only team Mike Locksley has topped dating back to mid-September and now he heads to Minneapolis as a 16-point dog. We're split on this one as well.
Plenty of tigers will be doing battle in Baton Rouge with LSU hosting Auburn. Joe Burrow is an 11.5-point home favorite against a tough Auburn defensive front. We like Burrow to pick apart yet another foe, but several are riding with Gus Malzahn to cover the hefty SEC spread.
The Longhorns heading to Fort Worth as only a 1.5-point favorite is a little surprising. The Horned Frogs have already lost to SMU, Iowa State, and Kansas State. However, they did blow out the Jayhawks, which is more than Tom Herman can say after last week's narrow escape. Most of our pickers are siding with the Horns to cover.
Another somewhat surprising line may be the Nittany Lions heading to East Lansing favored by less than a touchdown. Even though it's on the road, Penn State has been playing at an entirely different level than the Spartans. Mark Dantonio does still have a good defense, but it's fallen down to No. 22 in the country after losses to Ohio State and Wisconsin. The Spartans got some extra prep time thanks to the off week, but we're still feeling a Nittany Lion cover.
Michigan versus Notre Dame may be the top matchup of the weekend. The Wolverines were favored at home when we got the line, but this one seems about as unpredictable as they come with the visiting team now listed as the favorite. The Irish fell to Georgia in a close one but otherwise are unbeaten. Michigan hasn't been good but did show some promising signs in the second half at Beaver Stadium.
Who do you see getting the win in Ann Arbor? Do the Buckeyes cover against a tough Badger defense?