Thursday

2008 College Football Picks: Week 2


Hello again everybody...

I really hope 4 posts a week isn't overwhelming anybody. I know it's a lot of neuroses and inanity to wade through. But today's post won't be terribly long, since you're now all familiar with the format of my college picks.

And today, I have a special bonus for you. Not one, but two "Flyer Picks of the Week". I'll explain momentarily.


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First I have to give you my standard three picks. Once again, were recreational gaming legal, and were I to have the wherewithal to make a worthwhile wager, the following are the games I'd be betting on:

East Carolina +8 vs. West Virginia: This is my favorite pick of the year so far. ECU is coming off a big 27-22 upset of Virginia Tech, a team that's supposed to contend for the ACC title. And now they're at home where you know their fans will be waiting to go bonkers to celebrate last week's win as well as this week's opportunity.

(Aside: Given the performance of the ACC teams last week, is "ACC Champion" a title anyone really wants to claim? "Congratulations on being the best of a group of mediocre teams. Now you get to go get your brains beat in, in a BCS Bowl Game." Woo!)

West Virginia whipped up on Villanova last week 48-21. Even with the departure of RB Steve Slaten to the NFL, the Mountaineers still have all kinds of offense, so I don't doubt they'll be in the 30-point range in this game.

But the +8 means that ECU only has to score in the low 20's for me to cover. And if Villanova can come up with 21 points against WV's defense, then I have a hard time believing that the Pirates won't be able to at least equal that.

So we're taking the home dog and putting another notch in the win column!

Next...

Stanford +14 @ Arizona St.: When I was discussing this pick in The Sports Take offices last night, one of the news guys told me, "I dunno, I think Arizona State is at least 18 points better than Stanford." And that's what sealed this pick for me.

This is also the guy who bet me a month ago that the Yankees would make the playoffs (all but impossible at this point), and after his initial diagnosis, bet me that Sen. Ted Kennedy wouldn't make it to Thanksgiving (the guy has the best doctors in the country, lead-pipe cinch anyone?). So even though some of you like to joke about my recreational gaming record, his is worse. So I feel pretty good here.

Football-wise, the Sun Devils beat Northern Arizona 30-13 and it wasn't really that close, as ASU called off the dogs in the 4th quarter. The Cardinal are coming off a 36-28 upset of Oregon State and should be brimming with confidence. Jim Harbaugh doesn't strike me as the kind of coach that's going to allow his kids to suffer a let-down, so I think 14 points are way too many to give them.

So we're taking the 14, and cheering for one of the great stories in college football so far this year.

Thirdly...

Wake Forest -8 vs. Mississippi: I was torn between this game and the South Carolina/Vandy tilt that's being played tonight. I don't feel more confident in one than in the other, so the tie-breaker for me was Wake being at home.

The Demon Deacons crushed perennial Big 12 doormat Baylor last week 41-13 last week. A lot of people (yours truly included) pushed the Deacs aside in favor of picking Clemson to win the ACC. Well as bad as the ACC looked last week, Wake was one of the few highlights. And I don't see that changing this week.

Ole Miss had an equally impressive opener last week, lighting up Memphis 41-24.

So if home field advantage is worth 3 points, then the real question is, "is Wake 5 points better than Mississippi"? I think so.

I don't doubt that Houston Nutt will make the Rebels a better club sooner than later, but this is a huge road test for Mississippi, and I'm not sure they're going to keep it close enough to cover.

So we're giving up the 8 points and cheering for the Old Gold and Black in Winston-Salem!

Finally it's time for the official Sports Take Flyer Pick of the Week!

Nebraska -26.5 vs. San Jose State: That's right Husker Fans, I'm back with you this week. I was told that one win does not a good luck charm make. Fine, then I'll pick you again and see if I can deliver a second win.

Think I'll put a whammy on you this week? Not bloody likely. How many of you can name the nickname of the San Jose State football team?

Anyone? Bueller? Anyone?

Give up? The Spartans are 1-0 after a 13-10 victory over that vaunted powerhouse, UC-Davis. Oof.

Nebraska rolls for the second week in a row and the "Bo for President" signs multiply exponentially!

Did I say "finally"? I meant "penultimately". Because this week, you get an Extra Flyer Pick of the Week. Who says you can't get something for nothing these days?!

Florida -21.5 vs. Miami: I'm testing a theory here. I picked against Florida last week and obviously that was a mistake. So I was tempted to pick them this week because I'm starting to get the same feeling I got last year with the Patriots. Namely, it doesn't matter how much they're favored by, just pick them.

So I was discussing this pick with the Hammer (if you didn't see his NFL picks yesterday, go back and check them out), and he contends that Miami always gets up for Florida, so he didn't see Flordia winning by 22 or more.

So I nixed the pick from my regular list, but I'm going to include it as a Flyer Pick. So it's my prognostication versus the Hammer's. Who's right? Who's wrong? Tune in Saturday, 7pm on ESPN to find out!

So that's all for this week's picks ladies and gents. I'll have all the results for you on Monday. I'm feeling good this week, so I fully anticipate being above .500 come next week. Then again, I usually feel that way week-in and week-out, so take that for whatever it's worth.

I'm back tomorrow with my regular Friday column. Until then, thanks for reading!

2 comments:

  1. Dan, I will be in Omaha this weekend and if a defense shows up (yeah I know, the offense looked pretty good but I loved those black shirts) I'll personally hang a Bo for President poster.

    Larry in Maple Grove

    ReplyDelete
  2. I think WV wins by 10, ASU vs Stanford ends within 6pts, Ole Miss wins by a lot, NU wins by a lot, and Miami wakes up to play FSU.

    So, Dan gets 2 of 5.

    ReplyDelete