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Pac-12 football odds and picks 2014: The Gamble-Tron, Week 4

At long last, the Gamble-Tron broke even (kind of) last week. Our long national nightmare is (kind of) over.

Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome back everyone, especially you degenerate gamblers, pretend and otherwise. The Gamble-Tron kind of, sort of bounced back in Week Three, but it wasn't exactly a thing of beauty. On one hand, I needed a goalline stand by Stanford's second string defense to narrowly escape a bad beat gainst Army. On the other hand, Arizona State was on pace to score about 48 points until their qb went down, allowing Colorado to crawl within two touchdowns. The margin stayed at 14 because Todd Graham saw what the rest of us did. His backup quarterback isn't any good.

Why I'm a genius: I thought, nay, I KNEW that South Carolina was going to hang tough with Georgia. Heck, they'd won three of the last four. Plus, like I mentioned, there are few things in this world that Steve Spurrier enjoys more than sticking it to the Bulldogs. All it took was some shaky officiating, awful Georgia play calling down the stretch, and a field goal kicker who got a sudden case of the yips.

Why I'm an idiot: I touted Washington against Hawaii, and thought they would roll. They didn't. Then they barely beat EWU. Despite the fact that my gut foresaw a Washington blowout, mostly because Big Ten opponent, I went with Illinois anyway. It did not turn out well.

The result was a 4-4 week. I'm not a loser, I'm a break-evener! Well, sort of. I still lost $15. That brings the crappy totals to 9-16 / $825. If Taylor Kelly's stupid foot hadn't given way, ASU would have won by four TDs. Alas.

Week 3 Results:

  • crimsonwazzu: 3-4 (no Arizona-Nevada pick) / -$418
  • stewak: 5-3 / +$250
  • CarolinaCoug: 3-5 / -$60
  • Ryan Eames: 0-8 / -$315
  • Cougar_Jeff: 2-6 / -$265
  • ezcrew: 3-4 (Why do you people keep skipping Arizona!?) / -$260
  • 89Coug in Hell: 3-5 / -$50
  • harpstar: 3-5 / -$100

A hearty congratulations to Mr. Eames. It is nearly impossible to miss on eight games against the spread, as one could flip a coin and win about fifty percent of the time. Speaking of that, I think I'll just start flipping that coin, since I couldn't do much worse. On to Week Four, where the slate is pretty light.

Hawaii at Colorado (-8): Watching the Colorado-ASU game last week, it was pretty obvious that the Buffaloes have a long way to go in their rebuilding project, especially on defense. They do have a legitimate playmaker in Nelson Spruce, and Sefo Liufau will get better. Hawaii is coming to the mainland for the first time this season, after squeaking by Northern Iowa. Something tells me their tank is quickly approaching "E."

The Pick: $25 on Colorado

Utah at Michigan (-5): This is the most intriguing matchup of the week involving a Pac-12 team. Take note, because that will be the last time you see the words "Michigan" and "intriguing" in the same paragraph. Their offensive line is a dumpster fire, and "Michigan Man" Brady Hoke hasn't exactly done much with that highly-rated talent he's been recruiting. Utah comes in 2-0, and appears to be quite improved over last season. Travis Wilson has tossed six TDs on just 38 attempts. That's not bad. The Big Ten has just one victory over power conference opponents this year (please don't ask who), and is clearly a terrible conference. Every sign is pointing to not only a Utah cover, but a Utah win. Everything except the Gamble-Tron.

The Pick: $20 on Michigan

Georgia State at Washington (-35): I still have no idea how or why this game was scheduled. Washington's non-conference schedule is less challenging than a run through the GSL. Georgia State was taken to the wire by something called Abilene Christian in Week 1, and used that momentum to lose to New Mexico State. Washington finally broke out last week against some FCS team called Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Expect a similar result.

The Pick: $30 on Washington

Cal at Arizona (-10): Questions abound in this game. Has Arizona improved at all since their first game? Will Solomon finally find some consistency? Is Cal THAT much better than they were last year? How will they respond to their first road game? Why are Arizona fans such jerks? I think the play here is the Over 70.5. In a shootout, take the points.

The Pick: $25 on Cal

San Diego State at Oregon State (-10): Interesting matchup here. Both teams are coming off a bye. SDSU went to Chapel Hill a couple weeks ago, and led the Tar Heels 21-14 before wilting in the fourth quarter. Oregon State beat Hawaii in a game that was not nearly as close as the final score would indicate. They have also regained the running game that was missing for much of last year, as Storm Woods and Terron Ward have combined to rush for 322 yards in two games, averaging over six yards per carry. I have no clue about this game.

The Pick: $20 Oregon State

Oregon (-24) at WSU: This opened, for some reason, as a 19 point spread. Though I'd never bet actual money against WSU, I'm not using actual money here. Oregon minus whatever until proven otherwise.

The Pick: $25 on Oregon

Miami at Nebraska (-7.5): I don't think Nebraska is very good, but I think Miami is, in the words of Charles Barkley, turrible. Miami started off the year by getting boat raced by Louisville, then beat a couple cupcakes. Nebraska needed a miracle to avoid overtime against McNeese State, but hammered Fresno State on the road last week. As an aside, what on earth happened to Fresno State? Was Derek Carr THAT good? They've given up 52, 59, and 55 points in three games. Yikes.

The Pick: $50 on Nebraska

Now for a new segment in the column, the Built-in Excuse of the Week. Each week, I plan on giving you a built-in excuse as to why my picks will likely go down in flames. This week we are potty-training my youngest Islamic jihadist son. We are using the three-day method, which is basically signing up for a 72-hour kick to the junk. We just finished Day Two. For that reason, I've had precious little time to do anything other than stare at my kid's underwear and see whether I need to hustle him to the bathroom.

Place your bets below.