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Thursday, October 28, 2010

Picks of the Week

Hey, there were some big games on the line last weekend and I managed to call every single one of them. I went five for five, to bring my total up to 44 out of 62 games, or 71% on the season. last weekend Auburn and Michigan State and Missouri did a great deal to help solidify themselves as front runners. Oregon too is up there, and probably deserves to be #1 but the flailing Pac 10 ain't helping them out any, while the relative strength of the SEC West is giving Auburn a huge boost (though I wonder if anyone has noticed the steady downward drift of teams like South Carolina, and Miss St?).

This week there are really only three games of national significance. While there are a slew of middling games that will help clarify who goes to what unimportant bowl games for each conference, there are really only three important ones. MSU goes to Iowa for the last of the difficult games on their schedule, Missouri faces Big 12 North rivals Nebraska, and Oregon travels to the Coliseum to take on a USC program that would kill for a statement win right about now. It's hard to predict what will happen when so much is on the line and three of the top six teams are on the road against stiff conference opponents. I think one of these teams will lose. Stay tuned for which.

No. 5 Michigan State at No. 18 Iowa
The Spartans are the only undefeated team in the Big Ten, and with Ohio State fortunately off their schedule this year, the last remaining test for a decisively battle-tested Michigan State team is the Hawkeyes of Iowa. I'm sure ole' Sparty is wishing they could have this game in the state of Michigan too, but last week they traveled to Evanston and came out with a win against a decent Northwestern team, so maybe the "hasn't traveled outside of the state of Michigan" meme is outdated. Iowa isn't Northwestern, though, and MSU will have to play their best game of the season to get passed the Hawkeyes, especially with the Black and Gold smarting from last week's last minute loss to Wisconsin. Iowa is trying to find a back door to the BCS, but Michigan State is fully in the driver's seat. I'm seeing green.
Michigan State 28 Iowa 24

No. 6 Missouri at No. 14 Nebraska
Missouri beat the #1 team in the country last week when they sailed passed Oklahoma. Too bad for them Oklahoma were really only pretending to be #1, just like Ohio State and Alabama before them. In reality Nebraska is likely to prove a much tougher opponent than the Sooners, and with the target now on the Tigers' backs, I expect Missouri to play a little differently than they did last week. For one thing, they are going to Lincoln. For another, Nebraska needs only to beat Missouri and they will likely have the Big 12 North sewn up. I expect another unbeaten to fall this weekend. Sorry Mizzou, but its the Huskers day.
Missouri 28 Nebraska 35

Florida vs. Georgia
Ahh, the worlds largest cocktail party. The annual rivalry game between Florida and UGA held in Jacksonville, FL. Normally this game matters, but this year both teams are neck deep in poo and are simply looking for anything to keep them afloat. A win over their rivals would certainly help. I say Mark Richt and his Bulldogs have a lot more to play for: pride, jobs, a possible back door to the SEC title game. Let's go Dawgs!
Florida 35 Georgia 42

No. 2 Oregon at USC
This is the third of the three big games this weekend. The Ducks can't get no love from the computers but they get love from me. I think Oregon is the best team in the country and they will prove this definitively this weekend by punking Kiffin and his Trojans by two TDs in LA. That's right. 2 touchdowns. Mark it down. Oregon will be National Champions this year. I'm thinking Auburn/Oregon, Michigan State/Oregon, or maybe, just maybe Oregon/Boise State.
Oregon 45 USC 28

Michigan at Penn State
Much has been made about the 2009/2010 similarities with my beloved Wolverines, but it all ends this weekend when Michigan goes into Happy Valley and drives passed a depleted and battered Nittany Lions. It's a shame JoePa is going to go out with a whimper, but Penn St are not very good this year and with their not very good yet Freshman QB likely out for the game with a concussion, they will be starting someone even worse. Though Robinson has already been eclipsed by stars like Cam Newton and LaMichael James, I expect ole' Denard to have a great game on his feet and in the air against a Lions squad that has failed to stop anybody this year, let alone the best offense in the conference. This one could get ugly, but I expect Michigan's defense to keep PSU in the game. Michigan by one.
Michigan 42 Penn State 35