by Doc - 10/19/2005
For those of you that play golf, you know what a mulligan is. Wouldn't it be nice to have a mulligan in sports betting? One that would allow you to use three points at any time. If that were the case, the mulligan certainly could have been used with our top three college selections the past two weeks. Two weeks ago, we had Colorado State -4 over Utah as our 'Mountain West Game of the Year.' The Rams won 21-17 giving us a push; however, they scored three fourth quarter touchdowns and failed on all three conversions after scoring. Last week, we tapped Michigan -3 ½ over Penn State as our, "College Game of the Year;" The Wolverines scored with no time remaining and since they were ahead, no PAT was attempted.
To make the wounds deeper, we also had LSU -6 over Florida, as a strong five-unit selection. LSU dominated the game but turned it over four times allowing Florida to hang in. On the final play of the game, the Tigers intercepted a pass and returned it into the endzone for a touchdown that was later called back. These are the type of games that really hurt to tie or lose. For those of you who are keeping track of our season, we are even on units and down $1670, based on $100 a unit. Certainly not were I want to be, but it is minor if we get hot, and we will. A lot of football is still ahead, and the best is yet to come.
As I look at the Big Ten this week, WOW! A very difficult schedule lies ahead. Two of the top teams in the conference are back on the road laying 16 points. The other team with one loss - Wisconsin -- is at home laying eight against the biggest disappointment in the conference. One has to wonder what the Purdue defense was doing to get better during the off-season besides reading all the press releases about them. As for the Badgers, this team was hit hard by graduation and now injuries, but just keeps finding a way to win. Wisconsin is well coached; however, I have to believe this is one of the most overrated 6-1 teams in the country. They should win their homecoming game this week against the Boilermakers, but by eight points? Is Purdue really that bad? I will not touch this game even if I had a 10-foot pole.
The big game in the conference this week has to be Michigan traveling to Iowa City. The Hawks are like gold at home but Michigan definitely has the edge in talent. The Wolverines O-line is really banged up and this is another game that I feel is too close to call. I like just one game in conference and you will be hearing from us later in the week about it.
One of the big games in the nation this week is Tennessee heading south to Tuscaloosa. The Tide will be looking for revenge as they have lost the last two meetings against the Volunteers. Tennessee has had problems moving the ball on the ground this year, as they have amassed under 100 yards against Florida, LSU and Georgia. It should be no picnic against the strong Alabama defense, as they are one of the best teams in the country. I like the Tide here laying just a field goal.
I recently read an article in USA Today about the NFC North being a vast wasteland. This is the Great Midwest, where the four horseman once rode to fame. Now we are left with Chicago, Detroit, Green Bay and Minnesota. None of these teams are close to being .500. In fact they are a combined 6-14 collectively as a group. These teams have won only two games outside of their division and are 0-9 on the road. History could be approaching as no team has won a division with a 7-9 record, but that dubious distinction may be threatened this season. I am sure that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are wondering why they had to leave this division. I cannot see any of these teams turning the corner anytime soon.
I mentioned earlier this week that the Big Ten schedule looks difficult this week; however, I see some real opportunities in the upcoming weeks. Looking at my crystal ball these are some of the games I like. The team I am looking at is underlined.
October 29, 2005 - Wisconsin at Illinois
October 29, 2005 - Ohio State at Minnesota
November 5, 2005 - Wisconsin at Penn State
November 5, 2005 - Illinois at Ohio State
November 12, 2005 - Northwestern at Ohio State
November 12, 2005 - Iowa at Wisconsin
November 12, 2005 - Michigan State at Minnesota
November 19, 2005 - Penn State at Michigan State
November 19, 2005 - Northwestern at Illinois
November 19, 2005 - Purdue at Illinois
As I look ahead these games will certainly receive my attention. The underlined team would be my choice as of this writing. Of course, injuries and line adjustments could make things look different but there is a very good chance the Big Ten Game of the Year will come from this group.
One team in the PAC-10 Conference that is turning a few heads is Stanford. The Cardinal went on the road the past two weeks and came away with victories in Pullman and Tucson. They were an underdog in both and most people crossed Stanford of the list of PAC-10 teams after suffering an embarrassing loss to UC-Davidson. The Cardinal stay in Palo Alto this week against a cold Sun Devil team that has lost two straight games. ASU lost by double digits to both USC and Oregon in Tempe but did have a bye week before they make the trip to the Bay Area on Saturday. I expect the Sun Devils to come out firing on all cylinders like they did at the start of the season. With QB Sam Keller now healthy all signs point to a rout by ASU.
As the schedule in the Big Ten is difficult this week, I will look outside the conference for out top five-unit selection. We have many outstanding packages to choose from all of which include our, 'Top Game.' We are doing extremely well in the pros and will get our college selection on track with a solid day on Saturday.
That is it for this week,