ST Top 10 Poll (5th ed.) & 2008 College Football Picks: Week 9

Hello again everybody...

Thursday's here and that means we usually get right to the college football goodness. But with the World Series having started, I have to at least mention Game 1.

I'll have more on the Series tomorrow, but for today, suffice it to say that I thought Game 1 was close, but with all the runners stranded on base, not terribly dramatic. Both pitchers threw relatively well, but neither was truly dominant. All the pressure's on the Rays now though, as they really can't afford to go to Philadelphia down 2-0.

As I said, more baseball tomorrow.

One other quick note... Today marks the 100th edition of The Sports Take. Sweet, I qualify for syndication! (What? That's only for TV Series?! Somebody get my agent on the phone! What? I don't have an agent?! Dammit!)

Today, it's college football. That means we get the 5th edition of the Sports Take Top 10 College Football Poll. Then it's more of the finest in college football prognostication as I give you my picks for Week 9! Off we go...

"Humor is the only test of gravity, and gravity of humor; for a subject which will not bear raillery is suspicious, and a jest which will not bear serious examination is false wit."
- Aristotle (384 BC - 322 BC), Greek philosopher

Any quote that can work in the term "raillery" is good by me!

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First off today it's the 5th edition of the Sports Take Top 10 College Football Poll. 10 loyal Sports Take readers have grouped together and voted to bring you their Top 10 teams in the nation. Comments for each team come from a random selection of pollsters. Without further ado, here are the results:

Rank) Team (1st place votes) - Points - Last Week's Ranking

#1) Texas (9) - 99 - 1
Handily beat Missouri 56-31. Still several tough tests ahead. But any doubts about their ability to bounce back from an emotional win over Oklahoma were definitively answered.

#2) Alabama (1) - 88 - 2
They need to focus on the games at hand, not LSU in 3 weeks.

#3) Penn State - 78 - 3
If they win in Columbus this week, they'll play for the National Title.

#4) Oklahoma - 61 - 4
Essentially two games behind Texas in the Big 12 South, they are the best team in the nation with no shot at playing for the National Title.

#5) USC - 43 - 8
Absolutely dismantled WASU 69-0. Running up the score? Probably. But it's what they have to do to get themselves back in the title hunt.

#6) Oklahoma State - 37 - 9
If the Cowboys can find a way to win at Texas this week, Mike Gundy is not only a man... he's THE man!

#7) Texas Tech - 34 - T5
This is mostly because I can't make myself vote for USC or Florida yet... and Minnesota doesn't have a signature win yet.

#8) Florida - 32 - T5
Crushed an overrated LSU team in the Swamp. Possible let-down this week versus Kentucky as they look ahead to Georgia.

#9) Georgia - 25 - 10
Could be a Top 5 team with wins at LSU and versus Florida in the next two weeks.

#10) Ohio State - 24 - NR
National Championship here we come! (unless Penn State beats us, then they'll go)

Others Receiving Votes: Utah 12, Boise State 9, LSU 6, Ball State 2

So there you have it. Not much change at the top, but the middle sort of jumbled itself up. Do you see any great injustices? Anyone that's way too high or way too low in your opinion? Add a comment below and tell us why!

Finally today it's my 2008 College Football Picks: Week 9!

It was a struggle to come up with lines that I thought were off this week. So I'm out on a limb with a few of them. That could mean my first 0-fer week of the season. Or it means that I could keep things rolling. Who knows?!

So as always, were recreational gaming legal, and were I to have the wherewithal to make a worthwhile wager, these are the games I'd be wagering on:

Minnesota -1 @ Purdue (11am): The Gophers are 6-1 (2-1). The Boilermakers are 2-5 (0-3).

In the spirit of Lon from Forest Lake's advice, I'm going with the Gophers here. Minnesota's had two weeks to prepare for what's still a potent Purdue offensive attack. The Gopher defense has been playing with more speed and aggressiveness this year, which accounts for a large part of their turnaround.

The Purdue defense on the other hand, has been woeful. So I think the Boilers are going to have a devil of a time slowing down the Weber-to-Decker express. And if Minnesota gets the passing game rolling, that will open plenty of holes for running back DeLeon Eskridge.

I expect the Gophers to win by at least 10 points. So we'll give the one and root for the Gophers!

(I'm taking an awful risk here Lon, this had better work! - copyright Grand Moff Tarkin)


Kansas -1.5 vs. Texas Tech (11am): The Jayhawks are 5-2 (2-1). The Red Raiders are 7-0 (3-0).

I've believed all along that Tech is a fraud. They run a gimmicky offense that can score a lot of points, but they haven't faced a team that also scores a lot of points. That ends this week.

Kansas isn't quite as strong as they were last year, but they can still go.

I think the home field advantage comes into play and Kansas edges this one out by a field goal. So we'll give the 1.5 and rock, chalk, Jayhawk!


Ball State -25 vs. Eastern Michigan (11am): The Cardinals are 7-0 (3-0). The Eagles are 2-6 (1-3).

This is the Sports Take Flier Pick of the Week.

25 points is a huge number. But Ball State's had two weeks to get ready for a barely-breathing Eastern Michigan squad. And they get them at home.

Ball State's the ST darling team, so what the hell, give the 25 and make them the Flier pick!


Alabama -6.5 @ Tennessee (6:45pm): The Crimson Tide are 7-0 (4-0). The Volunteers are 3-4 (1-3).

The entirety of this game hinges on which Tennessee team shows up. Will it be the team that got smoked by Florida 30-6 at home? Or will it be the team that worked over a tough Mississippi State defense 34-3 at home?

With a potent offense like Alabama's visiting Knoxville, I have a feeling it'll be the former. Yes LSU is a big game in a couple of weeks, but I think there won't be much looking past the Volunteers. Nick Saban's way to good of a coach to allow that.

I think the Tide's revved up and sticks it to Tennessee here. (Sorry Jon)

So we'll give the 6.5 and roll Tide!

So there you have it. Feel free to add a comment with your thoughts/feelings about them below. At least we'll have a solid idea of how I'm doing early in the day!

That's all for today folks. I'll be back tomorrow with a quick look at the first two games of the World Series (go Phillies!). Until then, thanks for reading!


  1. I recognized your foul stench when I logged onto this site!

  2. Kansas over Texas Tech?

    Excuse me while I go all Lee Corso on you.


    Seriously, Texas Tech's "Air Raid" offense isn't gimmicky. It's a real threat. And the Kansas defense has more holes than Sid Hartman has close, personal friends.

    Also...I said root for your rivals, not bet on them. Expect a press release from the UofM Athletic Department regarding your actions, sir.