Welcome back. Quite the opening week in our corner of the college football world! Ok, maybe not. Only two-thirds of the conference’s teams actually played, and the feature matchup that kicked off at 9 a.m. - which should have meant sky-high ratings - was instead usurped by all of the major networks calling the presidential race shortly before then. It could be no other way for the conference.
Outside of that, we had a snoozer in Eugene, a turnover fest in Boulder and a totally awesome and world-shattering double digit win in Corvallis. On to this week where, as we’re writing this, another five games have been canceled for all we know. This week alone we’ve seen LSU-Florida, Tennessee-Texas A&M, Mississippi State-Auburn, Georgia-Missouri and Ohio State-Maryland nixed on Saturday, and those are just Power Five games!
The real winner here is Mike Leach, who gets to avoid another tail-kicking and has more time to spew some lava-hot takes, such as:
“Our country has quickly become less free than it used to be”
Okie dokie, Mike!
Why I’m a genius: Iowa as a short favorite stunk to high heaven. Sure enough, they absolutely mauled Michigan State, who was highly overrated after beating Michigan (who totally sucks).
Why I’m an idiot: On the Twitter picks, I had the Under for the game in ASU-USC (57) and then changed it to the first half total (28.5) thinking that the teams would be extra cautious given the early start and opening game. So of course the first half exceeded the total, while the final score stayed under. Moron
Why I dislike every kicker not named Blake Mazza: Anybody see Jet Toner’s performance in Eugene? You know, the one that cost me a win? Walk home.
Last Week: 4-7
Season Total: 13-15-1
California Golden Bears at Arizona State Sun Devils (-4): Herm’s helmets pulled off a monumental choke job last week. Like, it was something we Coug fans are used to seeing. Herm’s problem is that he seems to coach every game like it’s the NFL, which means the final score will almost always be close. Herm seemed to be on the right side of those scores quite a bit during his first season-plus, but the long arm of regression has caught him. Despite that, ASU has played and Cal hasn’t. ASU is at home, and Cal isn’t.
The Pick: ASU (I’m actually taking COVID and laying the points when it comes to whether this game will take place)
USC Trojans (-13.5) at Arizona Wildcats: In a surprise to nobody, USC looked far worse than its preseason projections last Saturday. Clay Helton, everybody! Luckily for them, ASU was in a giving mood, game and all. If they don’t win this game by 21, something is seriously wrong. In other words, they’ll probably lose.
The Pick: USC
Oregon Ducks (-10.5) at Washington State Cougars: I don’t tend to make picks based off of trends (probably to my detriment) and I’m not necessarily doing so only because of this, but yo the Cougs have beaten/covered* the spread 10 straight times in this series!
On Phil Steele Plus you get the last 23 years series history on EVERY game making it easy to spot trends. Here is a sample from Wash St vs Oregon where Wash St is a perfect 10-0 ATS in the series (see shaded area) pic.twitter.com/PxYlLvejmn— Phil Steele (@philsteele042) November 10, 2020
This may be one of those times where fans are perfectly ok with watching from the comfort of the couch, as temps will be below freezing and the winds will be upwards of 30 mph. No thank you.
The Pick: WSU
*If you’re an underdog, you don’t “cover” the spread, you “beat” the spread. The only side who can cover the spread is the favorite. I will die on this hill and also this been my TED Talk.
Oregon State Beavers at Washington Huskies (-14.5): As we saw last week, the Beavers don’t seem particularly good. However, my principle this week is to take the points if a team has played a game. So while Tristan Gebbia is not someone who will lead OSU to victory over a good team, he may just be someone who can engineer a couple garbage-time drives to kick in the back door.
The Pick: Beavs
Colorado Buffaloes at Stanford Cardinal (-5.5): Yuck. The Buffs were impressive in the opener. The Cardinal...were not. Does Davis Mills play this week? Does it matter? Probably not. Hopefully not.
The Pick: Stanford
Utah Utes (-2.5) at UCLA Bruins: New year, same garbage Bruins. There’s a better than decent chance that this game is canceled due to the COVID situation in Utah. In that case, the winner is Chip Kelly, who is one of the most baffling cases of “on top of the world to off the cliff” since Ian Baker Finch.
The Pick: Utah
Iowa Hawkeyes (-3.5) at Minnesota Golden Gophers: Truncated season or not, when Floyd of Rosedale is on the line, shit is serious.
The Pick: Hawks
Miami Hurricanes at Virginia Tech Hokies (-2.5): College coaches, man. They’re almost as infuriating as college kickers. If you don’t know what I mean, have a look at the last 10 seconds of VPI’s jaw-dropping loss to the Liberty Flames last week. Justin Fuente cost his team a win when he iced the kicker, which nullified the field goal block/scoop-and-score his team pulled off. Note to coaches everywhere: Stop doing that. You’re not smarter than everyone else. Matter of fact, many of you are complete idiots when it comes to in-game strategy and tactics. Miami wins outright (+110).
We’ll be back with some Twitter picks after all the virus-canceled games/players missing games are announced.
We may have had a losing week in the column, but our Tallysight picks weren’t too shabby! You should know that the only difference between myself, Nick and Jeff was the fact that I took the “over” in the Cougar game, and those two were on the other side. The total was 65.5. I don’t need to tell you that Travell Harris is my favorite player but I will anyway. TRAVELL YOU DA MAN!