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Pac-12 Football Odds and Picks: The Gamble-Tron, Week 11

A life of gambling is a life on the roller coaster.

Wave Photo by: QAI Publishing/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

Greetings from a Deutsche Bahn train bound for Berlin! Team Gamble-Tron may or may not already be 1-for-1 in train station SNAFUs, but that’s neither here nor there. Anyway, welcome to Week 11, where things are happening on and off the gridiron. On the positive side, we rebounded rather well after the previous week’s disaster. On the negative side, we’ve had our first Pac-12 football game postponed due to a COVID outbreak. Well, I guess you could also denote that as being on the positive side, AMIRITE!!??

As the cover photo would suggest, our season has been like a sine wave. What is a sine wave? Well all I know is that it goes up and down, and is related to cosine and tangent. I know that because of the Algebra III class I took during my sophomore year in high school, and this is is the first time I’ve referenced it in real life, so I guess Ms. Manikowski is finally having her revenge. Just don’t ask me what cosine means outside of a “I do really well then really bad then kind of ok then bad again” context, because I had no clue how to correctly apply it then, and I sure as hell don’t know now. But enough of my nonsensical rambling. Let’s talk about how lucky smart I am.

Why I’m a Genius

It didn’t take long for my card to teeter between :”brink of disaster” and “start of a serious heater.” About three hours into the day’s action, Liberty was driving deep into Ole Miss (-8.5) territory trailing by 13 and threatening to kick down the back door. At the same time, TCU led Baylor (total = 58.5), 30-28, with Baylor lining up for a chip shot field goal. Meanwhile, while Kansas State (-24) was letting Kansas drive down the field toward a meaningless (unless you had KSU!) garbage touchdown.

A play here or there and my day was going to start off rather precariously (this was after Utah scored a garbage TD to push the total over on Friday night because of course). But then...THEN Ole Miss intercepts Liberty’s quarterback to end it, and TCU goes “college kickers” and doinks one off the upright! THERE IS LIFE! But it wasn’t over, as Baylor quickly moved into TCU territory. Back to Lawrence, where the Jayhawks stall at the Wildcat 21! Cover preserved! Once more to Fort Worth, just in time to see TCU’s Shadrach Banks intercept a Gerry Bohanon pass! Total preserved! I ain’t gonna lie, this was possibly the greatest series of gambling escapes we’ve ever had. Disaster turned to dominance.

We also sniffed out double-digit home dogs and rode both of them to wins, and we knew damn well that ASU would play a lot better than it did the week before. Surprisingly, the least stressful play of the day came in College Station, where all of one touchdown was scored. Oh, and we are now on a four-week heater taking Ole Miss unders. But enough about how lucky we were, let’s talk about some stupidity.

Why I’m an Idiot

I’ve been rather successful at fading high totals, but hoo boy was I over my skis when it came to Wake Forest-UNC. As soon as the first quarter ended with 24 points on the board, that ticket went in the trash. Then there’s Cincinnati-Tulsa, which provided a nice series of kicks to the fellas. We had over 54.5, and the total sat at 48 late into the fourth quarter. After Tulsa failed inside the Cincy 5 yard line, we figured we were cooked, but then an inexplicable Cincinnati fumble brought new life! We may pull off another miracle! If you saw highlights, you know what happened.

Over to The Valley, where I took a flier on Fresno State at the last minute. Mistakes were made. But at least it was over early, as with UNC-Wake. Finally, I’m a super duper idiot once again because of Oregon, but really because I’m a coward. I had the Ducks laying the points all week, then chickened out and switched to the moribund Huskies for no apparent reason. I deserved the loss.

Last Week: 11-5

Season Total: 80-62-3

Reader Results:

  • J.J. FeKl: 5-3
  • x99163z: 2-3
  • cougman the II: 6-4

Another full slate of games! The last time this happened - a scant two weeks ago - we...faired poorly. Due theory, engage! Taking a look out there, this is slated (on paper) to be another snoozer. Spreads of 16, 12, 14, and 24 do not have the look of a fun weekend. That’s why they play the games.

Washington State Cougars at Oregon Ducks (-16)

This has fallen as low as 13.5 in a couple spots, so luckily we were able to jump on this early. The only reason for pause is Oregon’s proven ability to run between the tackles, and WSU’s chronic issues at defending that exact philosophy (see: Oregon State and BYU). The thought (hope?) here is that Dickert and Co. used the idle week to scheme up a way to make Anthony Brown beat WSU, because if the game is in his hands, it should be within a couple scores. It also helps WSU that this game is sandwiched between Washington and Utah.

The Pick: WSU

Utah Utes (-24) at Arizona Wildcats

This line opened at 24 and has stayed there all week. God bless the Wildcats, because they are facing an entirely different animal this weekend than last.

The Pick: Utah

Colorado Buffaloes at UCLA Bruins (-14)

Another opener that we’re jumping at, as it has since gone up to 17. The Buffs aren’t as bad as we all may have thought, but they’re still pretty bad, especially away from Boulder. UCLA has been quite disappointing of late, but had a week to rest and heal up. One thing the Bruins probably didn’t do much of was recruit, because Chip Kelly.

The Pick: UCLA

Arizona State Sun Devils (-4) at Washington Huskies

Maybe I’m an idiot (don’t answer that), but as soon as John Donovan got sacked and Jimmy Lake picked up his first suspension - congratulations, Jimbo! - I figured Washington would go from 4-point dog to 10-point favorite. Incredibly, that hasn’t happened, so we’ll just hunker down and lay the points.

The Pick: ASU

Stanford Cardinal at Oregon State Beavers (-12)

Let’s see here. The Beavers are favored by 12 over a conference bottom-feeder. Kinda feels like we’ve seen this movie before! The only difference is that Jonathan Smith made a scapegoat of his defensive coordinator, and now Craig Bray’s kid is in charge. Let’s call this performance a dead cat bounce for OSU’s defense as Stanford is a smoldering pile of wreckage and is likely to be without its quarterback once again.

The Pick: Benny

USC Trojans (-3) at California Golden Bears

I feel like almost everyone involved in this situation did something dumb, but what do I know? Anyway, see you in December? Maybe?

The Pick: Berkeley Public Health

UConn Huskies at Clemson Tigers (-38)

FULL ON SICKO MODE HERE. Who has two thumbs and is stupid enough to lay 5+ touchdowns with the Clemson offense? This guy.

The Pick: Climpson

Houston Cougars (-22) at Temple Owls

As with Kansas, I’m way too late the the “fade the Owls” party, but hopefully it holds for one more week.

The Pick: Holgo

Kansas Jayhawks at Texas Longhorns (Total = 62)

Kansas is bad at scoring. Texas is ok at scoring but not that great. The Horns will be looking to take out a month’s worth of frustration, but I don’t think they get to 50.

The Pick: Under

UTEP Miners at North Texas Mean Green (PK)

Blatant case of disrespect being cast upon the bowl-eligible Miners here!

The Pick: I spent a month there one night (El Paso)


Michigan-Penn State Under 48.5

Oklahoma -3.5

Bama-NMSU Under 67.5

Fresno State -24

Iowa State-Texas Tech Under 57

May God have mercy on my soul.

Staff Picks


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