College Morning Picks: In-Conference Schedules Get Thick
That wasn't pretty.
No, not Ohio State's live beatdown in Southern California. I'm talking about last week's picks of course.
I've gone two for three already this year, but the manner that I did it in last week is what makes it ugly.
I took UCLA and watched them not only get beaten up in a big way by BYU, but I also saw them not muster a single point.
While I got two picks right, USC went against what I said, and while Auburn did in fact narrowly escape a Mississippi State upset, it was not for the weak of heart.
Now, how will I redeem myself and try and scratch my way back to a .500 record?
I don't know, but if I fall any further behind, I might have to quit.
Last Week: 2-3
Is Notre Dame For Real? Notre Dame @ Michigan State
I'm dipping my hand back into the pot that burned me last week. I must try and avenge myself with a correct pick in Notre Dame's game, because it really could have gone my way if Michigan won.
No really, it would have!
I also suppose that my picks of Buffalo and Connecticut won't count at this point.
I keep hearing that this game will prove if Notre Dame is for real or not.
It's Michigan State, not Georgia or Oklahoma. How on earth are we supposed to judge if they are real or not based on a game against...Sparty?
I think Michigan State is a nice little team and all, but it's hardly a test to see just how good Notre Dame is.
It will be a nice test to see just how bad they are though. They escaped the game against Michigan with a lot of turnovers to their benefit. I don't think Michigan State makes the same mistakes their in-state rivals made because Mark D’Antonio has more polished squad.
I wasn't impressed with Jimmy Clausen's performance at quarterback and question if he can do it again on a field that is at least 75 yards long more than one time.
With that, I'm going to take Michigan State and either be burned twice, or rejoice in my revenge. Javon Ringer could very well eclipse 200 yards if the Notre Dame defense plays like they did last week.
ACC Playoff #1: Wake Forest @ Florida State
The Seminoles not only find themselves suddenly ranked, but they also find themselves facing a quality opponent for the first time this year.
In what could prove to be a crucial game when it comes to the ACC Atlantic standings, Wake Forest finds themselves as a favorite against the Seminoles.
But are they really the favorites?
I think a lot of people are expecting Florida State to win this game because it's Florida State and they might just be back!
Well...No, not exactly.
Which teams did Florida State beat this year?
You don't know?
That's right, you don't know because neither team should strike any sort of fear into a puppy dog.
I'm going to take Wake Forest because I've seen what they can do against some much stiffer competition. They are what I like to call battle-tested.
ACC Playoff #2: Virginia Tech @ North Carolina
This is probably even more crucial when it comes to the ACC standings by virtue of the fact that the Coastal division, in a word, sucks.
North Carolina was my sleeper pick to win the Coastal division, because well, it sucks.
Virginia Tech is coming off a big win over Georgia Tech, and North Carolina is coming off a Thursday night drubbing of Rutgers. Don’t forget, the Tar Heels have an advantage with a few extra days of rest.
I'm going to make this quick and easy. I like T.J. Yates and Butch Davis' squad at home over Virginia Tech. Take North Carolina and any points they might get, because this, my friends, will be easy.
The ACC Coastal division could ride on this game, and remember, it sucks.
SEC Playoff #1: Florida @ Tennessee
You can say what you want about how bad Tennessee looks out of the gate here in 2008. Especially when the team that beat them, UCLA, just got their behinds handed to them by BYU.
But, this is a rivalry game and you know Tennessee always will get up to play Florida, especially in their home stadium.
I'm not one to argue with records like Urban Meyer's against Tennessee. He's perfect so far and this is yet another big game when it comes to conference standings.
Florida needs this win here because it will probably be their toughest SEC game outside of Georgia and LSU. Georgia has both LSU and Auburn, so the Gators can get a virtual leg up on the Bulldogs with a win here.
So, I'll take Timothy Tebow and the Florida Gators over the Volunteers. It just makes sense.
SEC Play...Oh, forget it: LSU @ Auburn
There are so many good games on the slate that I left matchups like Arizona State and Georgia off this week’s group of picks. However, this is a must-pick game.
Given Auburn's play last week and the defensive history this game always has, I'd expect more of the same.
Unlike my supposed "defensive struggle" last week, this one will not disappoint, especially with two unproven signal callers.
The thing that comes down to it for me is just that. Which quarterback will play well enough to not cost his team the game?
Okay, maybe not. But, this game could be decided by the quarterback play. If Andrew Hatch or Chris Todd suddenly get it to "click", then just maybe their respective teams have a leg up.
Both teams will probably rely on the running game, if Brad Lester is healthy enough for Auburn. But, if say Chris Todd finally gets the offense moving, it could mean the difference.
With that, I like Andrew Hatch better at this point, and I think LSU's run game is just too strong and deep for Auburn to keep up. I'll take the Tigers, the LSU Tigers that is, to go into Auburn and win.
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