Welcome to the Apple Cup edition of the Gamble-Tron. In what was the first disappointing weekend for the Cougars in ages, we actually...made money? This was clearly an aberration for us, in what has been an otherwise horribad season of making picks. Let’s all hope it was also an aberration for the local football team, who will hopefully get back to their winning ways this Friday.
So here we sit on the last weekend of the Pac-12 football season, still licking our wounds from 12 weeks-worth of bad beats, backdoor covers and mailed-in performances. Even so, it’s been a blast, largely because of the interaction I have with all of you. It also hasn’t hurt that we have a really good team again this year. With that, let’s go.
Why I’m a genius: Cal hasn’t stopped anyone all season. There was no way they were stopping Christian McCaffrey. Get used to sucking, Cal. It’s gonna be a while. Oregon State is much different at home. Arizona is the same everywhere, terrible. That USC pick wasn’t looking so hot in the first quarter. Luckily for me, they play four quarters, and UCLA went back to sucking.
I was even able to call a couple non-Pac-12 games this week. It’s a Festivus miracle! Not only did both Navy and Arkansas cover, there was zero stress involved. I am still mystified as to why Arkansas was getting points against Mississippi State. They only scored 58 points. Navy thought that was pretty week, so they decided to hang up 66.
Why I’m an idiot: Umm, Utah? You are aware that you’re supposed to be one of the better teams in the conference, yes? No. Grape job by Washington once again to do just enough to not cover against a terrible team. And then, we get to the Cougs. The game was playing out like it would come down to one score, and I never really had a doubt that the Cougs would cover, until they didn’t. Ugh.
Last Week: 5-3 / $350 (My right hand was instinctively moving toward the “-” key)
Season Total: 42-54-1 / -$2345
- Dr.Coug-A-Lot: 3-3 / -$205
- BothwaysUphill: 4-2 / $180
- wsu4life: 4-2 / $160
- stewak: 3-3 / -$30
- Ryan Eames: 4-3 / $70
- cougman the II: 3-6 / -$360
- DenverCoug: 5-2 / $220
- cmaddex: $1440
- TheOriginalCougMan: 6-2 / $380
- hollyweirdcoug: 4-4 / $160
- MileHighPharmer: 3-6 / -$800
ASU (-3/-110) at Arizona (+3/-110): We begin our look at Rivalry Weekend with the Territorial Cup. About the only territory being contested here is more space in the Pac-12 cellar. No matter how bad it gets, I never cease to be amazed at Arizona’s free fall. in 2014, this game decided the Pac-12 champ. Now? Not so much. Both teams have been besieged by injuries. ASU sucks, but Arizona should be getting at least a touchdown from almost every Power Five team in the country.
The Pick: $110 on ASU
Notre Dame (+17/-110) at USC (-17/-110): Both teams had inauspicious starts to the season. One team righted the ship, and is playing like a playoff team. The other team just had a BCS title game season erased (which is so dumb, by the way). Sam Darnold has saved USC’s season, but the Trojan defense has also been instrumental. If this game were at Notre Dame, I’d think the Irish had a shot to win. This game is in LA, and USC should roll.
The Pick: $110 on USC
Oregon (-3/-115) at OSU (+3/-105): Civil War? More like Civil Slap Fight, amirite? All jokes aside, there is alot at stake in this game. Namely, the winner avoids the Pac-12 North cellar. THROW OUT THE RECORDS. But seriously, both of these teams want the records to be thrown out. Oregon is coming off a physical contest on the road, and hits the road again this week. As we said before Arizona, the Beavs are a different team at home.
The Pick: $105 on OSU
UCLA (-3/-110) at Cal (+3/-110): Both of these teams have been extremely disappointing this season, to varying degrees. UCLA was expected to contend for the conference title, while Cal was supposed to at least make a bowl game once Davis Webb came onboard. Neither happened, and both teams will spend bowl season at home, provided the winner doesn’t suffer the indignity of going to a bowl with five wins. As with the OSU-Arizona game last weekend, I’m just gonna plug my nose and hope the wind blows me in the right direction.
The Pick: $110 on UCLA
Utah (+10/-115) at Colorado (-10/-105): What was supposed to be the game of the year in the Pac-12 South has lost some luster, as Utah inexplicably lost at home to awful Oregon last weekend. We all know Colorado held up its end of the deal, unfortunately. A win puts Colorado in the Pac-12 title game. A loss puts them in contention for the Alamo Bowl. Colorado will have much more trouble against Utah’s defensive line than they did last week. Utah won’t score much, but they will score enough to stay close.
The Pick: $115 on Utah
Rice (+36/-110) at Stanford (-36/-110): Seriously, the slate of games (aside from the Apple Cup and whatever they call that manufactured rivalry among the mountain schools) is a garbage barge this weekend. How on earth did this game even get scheduled? Does Stanford think they’re in the SEC? The battle of two nerd schools won’t be close, but 36 points? I’ll take them.
The Pick: $110 on the Owls
UMass (+7.5/-115) at Hawaii (-7.5/-105): We started the season with some dumpster-diving, why not end it in the dumpster?! Hawaii is 5-7 but still shows up in some bowl projections because there are something like 87 bowls now. UMass has won twice this season, against Florida International, and something called Wagner. UMass hasn’t had a home game since October. If you’d like to tune in, you need to dial up something called Oceanic Pay-Per-View, which is probably in more homes than Pac-12 Nets.
The Pick: $525 on the Rainbows. Or is it Warriors? Or is it Rainbow Warriors? Who the hell can keep track anyway?
Couple quick-hitters because why not:
West Virginia (-6.5/-110) at Iowa State (+6.5/-110): This line is severely deflated based upon last week’s results. Time to pounce.
The Pick: $550 on Holgo
Colorado State (+11.5/-110) at San Diego State (-11.5/-110): Until the upset at Wyoming last Saturday, SDSU had won its six previous games by at least 14. Hopefully they’ll play angry.
The Pick: $330 on SDSU
Navy (-7/-110) at SMU (+7/-110): Gotta stay on the bandwagon, especially with Chad Morris’ one foot out the door for Baylor. Eff you bet, Take Two.
The Pick: $1100 on the Middies
Washington (-6/-110) at WSU (+6/-110): On one hand - Washington has more talent up and down the roster. They’re playing for a spot in the CFP. They almost always win this game. They really don’t care about this game like WSU does. They’re demolished almost every team this season. They are perfectly constructed to beat a team like WSU.
On the other hand - WSU is more talented than it has been in ages, and there are several instances in which worse WSU teams have beaten Washington. It has just as much motivation as UW, with a shot at a conference title still in play. It has the home field advantage. Hell, WSU even has its starting quarterback! The rarest of Apple Cup birds!
In the final analysis, I still can’t get on the right side of WSU this season. 70 percent of the time in the Apple Cup, the Cougs lose, every time. UW just has too much this season, and will have too much on Friday.
The Pick: $110 on the Evil Empire