Welcome back, and top o’ the mornin’ to ya! Even if you’re reading this when it is no longer morning! Gamble-Tron HQ is still riding high after our best week in quite a long while. But like an unwitting tumble into a mountain stream, looking at our overall record supplies a cold dose of reality. Still, though momentum doesn’t actually exist in sports, we’re hoping to capitalize on our fortunes and maintain the winning ways.
This week brings us to Week 13, which delivers a full slate of Pac-12 football. On the other side of the country, we get the annual SEC-SoCon Challenge, when teams from the country’s best league face the likes of Samford, Western Carolina, UT Martin, East Tennessee State and Abilene Christian. (yes I realize not all those schools are in the SoCon) That conference’s scheduling brilliance is unmatched, though next year will bring changes to what we’re used to seeing this time of year.
Still, there are lots of juicy matchups out there, so let’s get to it.
Why I love gambling: Because it’s weeks like these that keep us coming back! If there was one we hoped to lose, it was picking against WSU. And that was the only loss! As long as you don’t check Twitter! I’ll take it! This is a lot of exclamation points! I think I’m most proud of that Iowa pick, because it involved a little foresight - there’s a reason they were favored - and a sprinkling or two of luck in the form of Minnesota’s garbage kicking game. Plus, Go Iowa Awesome! Also, I absolutely loved calling my shot regarding Cal’s suckitude shortly before they got boatraced by USC.
Why I hate gambling: Because it’s weeks like this that keep us coming back! More exclamation points! I have no earthly idea how last week happened, but the chances are hopelessly thin that another one like that can happen again. Even so, success like that is a helluva drug, despite the fact that all those winners didn’t even get our record to .500. Oh, and I actually wrote “Over 63” as an add-on to the WSU-Stanford line, but I erased it before publishing. Why? BECAUSE I’M A COMPLETE IDIOT BUT YOU ALREADY KNEW THAT.
You may have also noticed that I didn’t fall for the first half sucker bets. I don’t think the week’s success was a coincidence when paired with that fact.
Last Week: 12-4
Season Total: 95-97-3 (Have we really made nearly 200 - mostly bad - picks? Yep!)
- stewak: 3-3
- NWFlyfishing: 3-3 (That Colorado State beat...yikes)
- DallasCoug: 7-4
- WSUCougars’01: 5-5
- 89Coug in FL: 7-3
- .:R: 5-3
- BothwaysUphill: 6-2
- 425CougFan: 5-5
- BRCoug99: 7-9
Oregon Ducks at Arizona State Sun Devils (+14.5): I have no idea how, and I have no idea why - especially since my dead cat bounce prediction regarding Herm’s 2018 season is getting more obvious by the week - but for some reason I think this game will be uncomfortably close for Oregon.
The Pick: ASU
Utah Utes at Arizona Wildcats (+21.5): Man, you know it’s not exactly been a banner year for football in Arizona when both home teams are catching at least two touchdowns. Utah is on a mission for a conference title, while Arizona is on a mission to get the offseason started. My eyes tell me they accomplished that mission about three weeks ago.
The Pick: Utah
Washington Huskies at Colorado Buffaloes (+14.5): Good lord, that’s three straight games now where the road team is laying at least two touchdowns. Both teams are coming off an idle week, and Washington is clearly the better team, but the Buffs seem to be much better at home. Here’s hoping that continues.
The Pick: Ralphie (Good luck in your retirement!)
UCLA Bruins at USC Trojans (-13): Another huge line! I thought you could throw out the record books when rivals met! Like Cyndi Lauper, the Bruins showed their true colors last Saturday. Even though this has gone from 10 to 13, I ain’t swayed.
The Pick: Traveler. Or Conquest. Or Traveling Conquest. Whatever.
California Golden Bears at Stanford Cardinal (-2.5): Big Game? More like Bad Game, amirite?! In case you didn’t hear it on one of the eleventy billion occasions that the announcers brought it up, Stanford has injuries. But so does Cal, and Stanford’s backup QB is much better, as we saw.
The Pick: Stanford, Under 41
Oregon State Beavers at Washington State Cougars (-12.5): The line opened at 15.5, and since then, 93% of the money has come in on the road team. Seems like a good chance to find value in the favorites. Nope. Nope nope nope. If you want to bet the Cougars, first off you’re a lunatic. But second, the wait until the last minute, as the line will probably drop at least another point.
The Pick: Benny
Minnesota Golden Gophers at Northwestern Wildcats (+12.5): This line opened at seven, which makes me question nearly everything the odds-makers have ever stood for. I know the Gophers are coming off a tough loss, and they’re on the road for a second week, but they are way better than Northwestern.
The Pick: Minnesota
The Pick: Texas
Penn State Nittany Lions at Ohio State Buckeyes (-18): Yeah, I know Penn State has played the Buckeyes about as closely as possible over the last few years. I just don’t think they have what it takes this year to hang with the Buckeye buzzsaw.
The Pick: Brutus
Michigan Wolverines at Indiana Hoosiers (+10): Seems like a piece of bait that Johnny Squareplay would bite on, but I just can’t help it. The Hoosiers are much better than normal, and Michigan is probably looking ahead to next week.
The Pick: IU