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Thursday, October 18, 2012

Week 8 Predictions

I've been trying to figure out what to go as this Halloween.  Last year I was Brett Michaels, 1980's Poison Brett Michaels that is, not Rock of Love Brett.  For some reason all of my ideas are related to the 80's.

So we're at the midway point of the season and every sports site in existence seems to be writing about their mid season awards and teams that will take off or crash during the second half of the season.  Since that's already been discussed ad nauseum,  I'm going to run down my list of...

Top 10 Worst, most inappropriate, and distasteful Halloween Costume Ideas!

10. Not pictured here is the Mom dressed as Child Protective Services

9. Spiderman has really let himself go...
 And apparently shoots webbing from his nuts?

8. OK, who would let this woman do this? Doesn't she have any friends that would say, "Hey, maybe you should go as as something else."  In addition to that, where the hell did even find a Wonder Woman costume in whatever size that is.

7. Wow.  Hollywood is taking the live action thing to a whole new level.

6. I loved Thundercats when I was a kid, but I had no idea Lion O was gay... or wore Converse All Stars.
5. The only thing missing from this guy's costume is a black eye, because let's be honest, this douche bag deserves to get punched.
4. I have no idea what this is besides disturbing.

3. Let's analyze this for a second.  First, the dude is dressed as a toilet.  Second, he allowed a naked man to sit on  his lap.  Third, said naked man is rocking a pony tail.  Fourth, the shitter is apparently in the kitchen. And lastly, THERE IS A NAKED MAN SITTING ON THE DUDE'S LAP.

But really, how annoying would this costume be to wear?  And you know one of his jackass friends will get loaded and end up at best pissing on him... and at worst... well...

2. I have so many things to say about this one that I just can't fit them all into one post.  So I'll digress and let you make up your own statements about the guy fucking a sheep, and I'll focus on something else. Take a look at the background just above the sheepfucker's beer bottle.  Yep, that would be someone dressed as Jesus being crucified, complete with bloody hands.  Because nothing says "Let's party!" like our lord and savior dying on the cross.

1. You know who would be offended by the costume above?  This guy...
Finally proof that Tebow is not a virgin!

Alright, let's talk some football....

Top 25 Action

#1 Alabama @ Tennessee - The initial BCS standings were released and to absolutely no one's surprise, 'Bama is #1.
The Tide are the team to beat and Saban has them in the driver's seat for their second national title in a row.  The last team to repeat?  The '03-'04 Trojans, but the NCAA once again got involved and vacated the '03 title, so officially it's the '94-'95 Nebraska Cornhuskers.  This would be 'Bama's 19th Championship.  Who's first all time you ask?  That would be Princeton, with 28, their last coming in 1950.  'Bama still has to play three more ranked SEC teams, with a date at LSU looming large.  The Volunteers have some talent on offense with QB Tyler Bray and WR's Justin Hunter & Cordarrelle Patterson, but their D is lousy.  Saban has stated he doesn't like fast paced offenses, but with his D only giving up 7.5 points per game, any offense will be lucky to have any type of pace.  Look for 'Bama's offense to control the clock and keep Tennessee's dangerous O off the field.  38-13 Roll Tide.

#2 Ducks @ Sun Devils - A Thursday night game for the high octane, fast paced Ducks! The Ducks are the antitheses of Alabama, relying on an offense to constantly out score their opponents while their Defense is good but not great.  The Ducks are averaging 52 points per game this year.  On the other side of the field, even though ASU HC Todd Graham is known for running a spread offense, it's the Sun Devils D that has been dominant this year.  They are giving up only 14.2 points per game, good enough for 9th in the nation.  The Ducks are by far the best team the Sun Devils have faced this year and should be a good test of whether or not ASU is in in the running for the Pac 12 Championship or just an also ran.  48 - 24 Oregon.

#9 South Carolina @ #3 Gators - The Gators are #2 in the BCS standings, which is apparently weighted towards SEC teams.  The Schedule Making Gods smiled on Florida this year, as they get South Carolina and Georgia in The Swamp the next two weeks.  Having already dispatched with LSU in The Swamp, home field advantage looms large for the Gators.  The Gators achilles heel?  Their 118th ranked passing game.  If South Carolina's 5th ranked D can stuff the run and make Gators QB Jeff Driskel beat them through the air it  has a good chance at winning. However, Gamecocks star RB Marcus Lattimore may not play this week after sitting out practice. And man child DE Jadeveon Clowney has been slowed by a troublesome foot.  Going into The Swamp without arguably your best two players is not a recipe for a win. If Lattimore and Clowney don't play: 24-20 Gators. If Lattimore and Clowney play: 27-21 Gamecocks.

#4 K State @ #17 West Virginia - The smell of damp, beer soaked fabric was not in the air last weekend in Morgantown as no couches were burned as a result of the ass whooping handed down by the Red Raiders. WVU's vaunted offense was shut down by TX Tech as the Mountaineers put up only 14 points.  WVU's D has been suspect all season, and came up small again giving up 49 points. Things don't get any easier for WVU this week as they take on the Wildcats 19th ranked D.  K State's offense is all about running the ball, which will leave less time for WVU's offense to be on the field.  The question remains, did TX Tech provide the blue print for beating the Mountaineers, or were the Mountaineers caught looking ahead  to this game after beating down Texas in Austin the previous week?  Sloth says...
31-28 Mountaineers.

BYU @ #5 Notre Dame - The Irish yet again found a way to win last week, stopping Stanford on the 1 yard line three times in OT to hang on for a 20-13 win.  One of the goal line calls was controversial, but if you don't want the refs to decide the game, get the damn ball into the end zone!
If the Irish were in the SEC, the media would be praising them for playing great defense.  If the Irish were in the ACC, the media would be crushing them for being slow on offense.  The lesson is, low scoring games in the SEC are great football games with tremendous D, but the same game outside of the SEC is due to slow players on offense.  Nothing is going to change that perception until a conference starts beating the SEC on a regular basis.  Could the Irish have a let down after such an emotional win?  It's quite possible.  BYU boasts the 7th ranked D in the nation, surrendering only 13.6 points per game.  Don't look for a lot of points in South Bend this week.  17-6 Notre Dame.

#6 LSU @ #20 Texas A&M - The Tigers bounced back from their loss to the Gators with a hard fought win at home against South Carolina, 23-21. LSU Freshman RB Jeremy Hill led the way, with 124 yards and 2 TD's, including a 50 yard back breaker with 5 minutes left in the game to put the Tigers up 23-14.  The Aggies were up by 23 points in the 3rd quarter last week, and held off a furious rally by the La Tech holding on for a 59-57 win as La Tech failed to convert on a two point conversion with 38 seconds left.  The Aggies D was shredded by a wide open offense.  Fortunately for A&M, LSU runs a more traditional offense and QB Zach Mettenberger has not yet proved he can light up a scoreboard.  If LSU  hopes to win on the road, it will have to contain Aggies Freshman QB Johnny Manziel.  In addition to his 1,680 yards and 14 TD's through the air, Manziel has added 676 yards and 10 TD's on the ground. LSU will be the toughest D A&M has faced thus far, but A&M will also be the most prolific O LSU has faced.  Something has gotta give!  29-24 LSU.

Purdue @ #7 Ohio State - Buckeyes QB Braxton Miller continues to be a one man wrecking crew for Buckeyes offense.  The kid still isn't a very good passer, but he doesn't need to be in Urban Meyer's offense.  He's already eclipsed 900 yards rushing on the season and is averaging 7.1 yds per carry.  As soon as teams stack the box to stop him from running, he'll go play action and hit WR Devin Smith deep or possession WR Philly Brown in the soft spots of the zone.  The defense can pick their own poison as far as the Buckeyes are concerned. And as far as 3rd string QB Cardale Jones is concerned, he's not enrolled at OSU for a free education...
And he clearly didn't attend SCHOOL to learn the English language. You have to admire the kid's honesty.  He's just saying what the rest of the Buckeye players and fans are thinking.

Purdue had high hopes coming into the season but has lost to every decent team they've played. This week will be no different.  38-13 Buckeyes.

Utah @ #8 Oregon State - The Beavers were a popular pick to lose last week after starting QB Sean Mannion went down with a knew injury.  The Beavers responded by never trailing BYU and putting up 3 TD's in the 4th quarter pulling away for a 42-24 win.  If the Beavers win the Pac 12 Championship, Mike Riley should be Coach of the Year. The Utes bring their 3 game losing streak to Corvallis and have yet to win a road game this year.  That won't change this week.  34-16 Oregon State.

Kansas @ #10 Oklahoma - Kansas has already exceeded Fatty Weis's expectations this year...
And since that win against South Dakota State, they've lost 5 in a row. And the rest of the season does not look any better as the Jayhawks face 5 ranked teams in their last 6 games, and the one team that's not ranked?  Baylor and their prolific offense.  A one win season is on tap for Kansas.  It's hard to believe Kansas won the Orange Bowl and finished 12-1 only 5 years ago.  Fortunately for the Jayhawks, basketball season is only a few weeks away and they can be as obnoxious as usual.
OU destroyed Texas 63-21 last week. Look for the Sooners to cruise to an easy win and a top 10 matchup against Notre Dame in Oklahoma next week.  49-7 Sooners.

Colorado @ #11 USC - USC is favored by 40 in this game.  The Buffs are back to their losing ways after an improbable comeback against Wazzu a few weeks ago.  They've dropped 2 in a row and haven't been competitive.  Don't look for that to change this week.  Colorado may match Kansas with a 1 win season.  If USC can take care of business against Colorado this week and Arizona next week, they'll face Oregon in a top 10 matchup in the Coliseum.  56-10 USC.

#12 Florida State @ Hurricanes - Miami appears to be the quintessential average team. They beat bad teams, but get killed by good teams.  Fortunately for the Hurricanes, average teams still get to bowl games nowadays. HC Al Godlen has improved the 'Canes offense, but their D is an absolute mess. FSU's offense is ranked 6th in the nation at 46 points per game. Look for the 'Noles to raise that average this week. QB EJ Manuel should be able to pick apart the Hurricanes and have a big day.  52-14 FSU.

#13 Georgia @ Kentucky - Kentucky has the #1 rated BBall class in the nation.  It's so impressive, in fact, that analysts are speculating it may be one of the single best recruiting classes of all time. Kentucky really is becoming One and Done U.  It remains to be seen if Coach Cal can turn this group of recruits into national champs before they declare for the NBA draft next year.
The Bulldogs got destroyed by South Carolina last week, and look to rebound against the Wildcats this week before facing the #2 Gators next week.  This game has all the makings of a trap game.  A highly ranked team coming off a disappointing loss with a huge game looming next week... could Kentucky pull off the upset of the year?  29-7 Bulldogs.

Hokies @ #14 Clemson - The BCS doesn't like Clemson, ranking them 19th despite their only loss coming to FSU.  That's most likely because they've played a squeezably soft schedule that the Big East would be envious of.  Va Tech is the second best team Clemson has played this year. The Hokies have limped to a 4-3 record, while losing to two Big East teams and their "best" win coming against Duke last week. Va Tech spotted the Blue Devils a 20 point lead before scoring 41 unanswered.  When your best win is against Duke and you're not talking about basketball, that means you're not very good.  Could this game start Clemson's annual late season collapse?  The Tigers don't play another ranked team until their season finale at South Carolina, so if they're going to lose, it will be to an underdog.

Mid TN @ #15 Miss State - Miss State is undefeated and plays in the SEC, and yet we know little about them.  They have yet to play a ranked team this year.  That will change next week when they take on #1 Alabama, followed by Texas A&M and LSU.  The next three weeks will determine if the Bulldogs are BCS or just BS.  The Blue Raiders offense is decent and should find some success against the Bulldogs D but not nearly enough.  41-17 Bulldogs.

South Florida @ #16 Louisville - The Bulls are on a 4 game skid and HC Skip Holtz is on the hot seat. The Bulls don't do anything particularly well.  Louisville keeps winning but has not been very impressive.  They seem to play down to their opponent and do just enough to win.  Sooner or later that will catch up with them.  Or maybe it won't since they play in the Big East. Teddy Bridgewater is still one of the best Sophomore QB's in the nation.  37-28 Louisville.

#18 Red Raiders @ #23 Horned Frogs - A week after losing their starting QB, TCU put up 49 points on Baylor and beat them handily 49-21.  Freshman QB Trevone Boykin tossed 4 TD passes and did not turn the ball over. TX Tech is coming off a blowout win against WVU and must now hit the road to face the Horned Frogs.  The question is will the Red Raiders have a let down after such a huge win last week.  TX Tech faces K State and Texas after this so we'll soon find out what the Red Raiders are made of.  29-23 TX Tech.

#19 Rutgers @ Temple - Rutgers is undefeated.  Rutgers has yet to beat a team that currently has a winning record, except for the Howard Bison of the FCS.  Temple has a winning record, sitting at 3-2 after beating UConn in OT last week, but they can't throw the ball to save their lives, ranking 120th in passing offense. Rutgers D should be able to shut down the run and force the Owls to throw, which is why Rutgers will be undefeated when they face Kent State next week.  31-17 Scarlet Knights.

#21 Cincy @ Toledo - The Bearcats are the last of the trio of undefeated Big East teams.

If Cincy can take care of the Rockets this week, they'll set up a matchup of undefeated teams when they play Louisville next weekend.  Toledo brings a 6 game winning streak into this game.  The Rockets like to win with offense.  The leaders of that offense are RB David Fluellen who boasts a 5.8 yards per carry along with 792 yards and 9 TD's thus far.  He can also catch the ball out of the back field.  QB Terrance Owens is completing 65.8% of his passes and has 12 TD's and only 3 INT's this year.  How the Rockets handle the Cincy D will be the key.  Cincy is going to score some points, but the Rockets will not be able to keep up.  37-24 Bearcats.

#22 Stanford @ Cal - The Cardinal have lost 2 of 3 and have gone to OT their past two games.  The OT win came against an Arizona team that has an aversion to playing D, and required Stanford to score 21 unanswered points to get the W. Despite playing tough against the Irish last week, Stanford couldn't punch the ball across the goal line when it mattered most.  Blame the play calling, blame the refs, blame this guy's friend for not loaning him his pickup truck...
There's plenty of blame to go around, but the fact is if you want to win, you score from inside the 1 yard line.   Cal seems to be headed in the other direction, winning 2 of 3, including an upset of then #25 UCLA. The Golden Bears D has played better in recent weeks and this rivalry game has become a must win for both squads.  Look for Cal to spring the upset.  24-17 Cal.

Sparty @ #23 Michigan - Little brother heads to the Big House to face Big Brother in a rivalry game between two teams headed in opposite directions.

Sparty is coming off a double OT loss to Iowa in East Lansing, while Michigan crushed Illinois 45-0 last week. Sparty has been playing pretty good D all season, but their offense has been atrocious.  As goes QB Denard Robinson, so goes Michigan.  The only team two teams able to contain the dynamic D Rob happen to be the top two ranked defenses in the country.  Can Sparty measure up?  Better yet, will Sparty's O be able to put up enough points against the Wolverine D to keep them in the game?  27-19 Wolverines.

UNLV @ #24 Boise State - Boise just keeps winning, which is what you're supposed to do when you play only one ranked team, and that team beat you.
Boise is still the darling of the media harking back to their dramatic upset of Oklahoma in the 2007 Fiesta Bowl.  That game is still one of the best college football games I have ever witnessed.  I distinctly remember watching it at Big Wang's in Hollywood and the entire place cheering for Boise as they executed a hook & lateral to tie the game with 7 seconds left... 
And then Boise QB Jared Zabransky executing the Statue of Liberty play to perfection for the game winning 2 point conversion in OT.
While we're at it, remember when UNLV & Jerry Tarkanian ruled the hoops world?  Any get the feeling we'll be saying the same thing about Kentucky in 20 years?  The Rebels are on a 3 game skid and have only won 1 game this year, and they play terrible defense.  42-7 Boise.

Games of Note

Penn State @ Iowa - Everyone keeps predicting the demise of PSU as some inevitable event like it's a Mayan prediction.  Despite everyone's hope, PSU continues to defy the football gods.  HC Bill O'Brien has the Nittany Lions on a 4 game winning streak coming out of their bye week.  The offense has improved every week and the D is ranked 15th in the nation, giving up only 16 points per game.  Iowa is coming off a huge double OT win against Michigan State and has won two in a row after blowing a home game to Central Michigan.  The Hawkeyes appear to have woken from their slumber and have improved each week.  The Hawkeyes D is ranked 21st, giving up 17.2 points per game.  Look for a low scoring game with both defenses providing plenty of stops.  This game will come down to special teams, where Iowa has a distinct advantage over PSU, but if O'Brien can work his magic, he has a shot at the undefeated Buckeyes in Happy Valley next week. 28-24 Nittany Lions.

Cyclones @ Cowboys - The Cyclones hung tough with K State last week but couldn't pull off the upset, losing 27-21.  Despite the loss, HC Paul Rhoads has his squad playing well.  For Okie State, they got caught sleep walking last week, but fortunately for the Fightin' T. Boones, Kansas stinks and they won 20-14.  Any such laissez faire attitude will not result in a win against a much tougher Cyclones team this week.  Iowa State is ranked #24 in the current BCS standings, which makes this the first of six games in a row for Okie State against ranked opponents.  If the Cowboys want to go bowling, they'll have to pull some upsets the next couple of months. 31-21 Cowboys.

Baylor @ Texas - Is there a coach that does less with more in college football than Mack Brown?  Every it seems the Longhorns bring in a top 10 recruiting class from one of the most talent rich states in the country, and every year since the departure of Colt McCoy the 'Horns struggle.  The 'Horns D gave up 63 points to the Sooners last week and face a Baylor team that is averaging 47.6 points per game.  Fortunately for the 'Horns, Baylor's D is even worse, giving up 41 points per game.  Look for a shootout in Austin.  49-42 Texas.

Auburn @ Vanderbilt - Auburn is a 7 point underdog in this game.  You read that correctly, the Auburn Tigers are 7 point underdogs to Vanderbilt.  That' show bad things have gotten for the Tigers this season.  To put it simply, Auburn sucks
Vandy is at least playing tough even though they are sitting at 2-4.  The Commodores have some winnable games coming up and could definitely make it to a bowl game.  It all starts with this very winnable game for Vandy though.  Both of these teams struggle on offense so look for a game with lots of mistakes, unforced errors and missed opportunities.  Whichever team wins the turnover battle will win the game. 20-14 Vanderbilt.

North Carolina @ Duke - The Blue Devils opened up a 20 point lead on VA Tech last week as they sought to become relevant on the grid iron in the ACC.  Duke then reverted to their normal selves as they gave up 41 unanswered and lost handily.  The Tar Heels are on a 4 game winning streak and look to be in the hunt in the ACC Championship race. Duke still has a shot at a bowl game if they can win one more game, and that's an accomplishment for a program like Duke, but if they want to turn the corner and really start competing in the ACC, this is a rivalry game they have to find a way to win.  32-24 Tar Heels.

Upset of the Week

Nebraska @ Northwestern - Northwestern bounced back after their loss to PSU with a 21-13 win over Minnesota last week.  The Wildcats offense is led by do it all Jr. Kain Colter, who has lined up at QB, RB, and WR this year.  Northwestern is a spread team that likes to run the ball using the read option.  Much like Colter, Nebraska QB Taylor Martinez is more of a running threat than he is a passing threat. Martinez threw 3 INT's and was held to just 2.2 yards per carry against the Buckeyes last week.  While it was not Martinez's best game by any stretch, it was the 'Huskers D that was shredded for 63 points.  This game will be much closer than most will expect and is my pick for the upset of the week!  Nebraska says...
And I agree!

42-39 Northwestern.

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