Will we ever lose again?
The level of success we have had is borderline unprecedented. I’ve had years where my overall percentage has been better, but I can’t recall the last time I’ve rattled off seven straight weeks of winning picks. Last week we went 7-4-1 to bring our yearly total to 53-39-1 (57.6%) and we are in a stretch of going 46-27-1 (63%). I’m currently on the lookout for any suspicious packages arriving in my mail. I’m concerned some of your bookies are at the breaking point, just one more week of carnage away from sending me homemade pipe bombs themselves.
If that does happen, as my dying request, please pull a portion of your Money Train winnings together and bury me inside the Gucci store.
This moment came to me in a dream
I found myself on the precipice of a rather steep rock formation, over looking a river moving at a swift pace below me. The forest around me was quiet. All I could hear was the sound of the rushing water and the occasional rustling of leaves as the wind blew through the trees. But I was not at peace. I felt anxious. A stranger in a foreign place, without the slightest sense of my purpose there.
Then, with what must have been Batman-level stealth on his approach, an old Native American man placed his hand on my shoulder. I turned, startled at first, but relieved when I realized he had come in a spirit of friendship. It was easy to tell he was the village prophet based on his traditional opossum carcass headpiece. He spoke in his native tongue, but I understood every word. Dream A-Rob needs no Rosetta Stone.
He told me a great movement was building. A movement as strong and unstoppable as the raging river below us. And I was the chosen leader of said movement. After he said this, a massive horde of ravenous badgers descended upon our location. I braced for the worst and assumed the fetal position. All you can really do when faced with a horde of angry badgers is play dead and plead with God for mercy. But after a few seconds passed, and I hadn’t felt any badger claws ripping through my flesh, I looked up, only to see the badgers and the prophet had vanished…
Temple +10.5 @ UCF (Thursday)
UCF knows a thing or two about winning streaks themselves. They come into this one on a 20 game run and a confirmation from the playoff committee that they’ll never get a crack at a national championship (ranked 12th behind 2 loss Florida). While I tend to agree that UCF has no business in a four team playoff format, I do have respect for the American Athletic Conference. They play good football and this game should be entertaining.
Trouble in paradise? McKenzie Milton didn’t play last week and will be a game time decision Thursday night. Getting past ECU without him is one thing, but covering against Temple here will be no gimmie without him. The Owls are coming off a bye week and they knocked off, then undefeated, Cincinnati the week before. Temple is a solid squad and I like their chances to keep this one close.
Colorado @ Arizona -3 (Friday)
Any chance to get a couple games in before Saturday is tough for me to pass up.
Poor Colorado. They started the season so hot, only to lose 3 games in a row. To quote Dennis Green, “They are who we thought they were.” Eventually you are what you are, and Colorado isn’t very good. They just got destroyed by an awful Oregon State team (as 24.5 point favorites). To be fair, Arizona isn’t good either. However, they get this one at home and they just showed some life by beating the hell out of Oregon.
Arizona has owned Colorado in recent years, going 6-1 against them in their last seven meetings. Throw in the fact that the Buffaloes are the public side and I’ll ride with the Wildcats on this one.
Louisville @ Clemson -38.5
To be honest, I’m salty af that I haven’t been on Clemson these past few weeks. They’re in full NWO mode and its impressive. For anyone hoping for a shake up in college football, start looking towards next season cause Bama – Clemson Part 4 feels eminent.
There’s a part of me that wants to know what it feels like to lay 38.5 points and win. And I fully expect to. The wheels are completely off for Louisville. They’re 1-7 ATS, gave up 56 to WAKE FORREST last week, and let GA Tech’s high school offense ring up 66 on them. Which I guess that’s the kind of stuff that happens when you’re the 125th ranked rushing defense in the nation. Travis Etienne is about to absolutely run wild on Saturday.
Nebraska @ Ohio State -18
Speaking of NWO, I’ve seen this movie before. The Buckeyes take an embarrassingly, disastrous loss to a middling conference team on the road and then bounce back to dominate the rest of the year… I’d be just like Ohio State to catch fire, ruin Michigan’s season, and watch the CFP Playoff, along with the rest of the Big Ten, from the couch.
Ohio State is 1-5 ATS in their last six games, and coming off a bye plus a loss, you just have to know that’s due to change. During the off week, I hope Greg Schiano got back to the fundamentals with his defense cause the tackling against Purdue was pathetic. Nebraska, on the other hand, is coming off of two straight wins, which is the perfect time for them to receive a dose of reality. This game opened at 20.5 and has moved down to 18 and I’ll gladly capitalize on that reverse line movement.
Texas A&M @ Auburn -4
Believe it or not, this might be my favorite bet of the week. Its got all the goods: reverse line movement, fading heavy public action, and a tough team to beat at home. However, speaking of that, this has been a strange series. The past six years the road team has won in this matchup. That stat just can’t continue, law of averages.
Texas A&M is known for starting the year hot and running out of gas down the stretch. Auburn is known for starting slow and ending the season strong. Those are classic trends people. For the Auburn fans that are looking to get rid of Gus Malzahn, you’re beyond delusional. Be careful what you wish for, its tough to replace a guy that actually knows what its like to beat Nick Saban.
Georgia @ Kentucky +10
I’m honestly not sure if its safe for me to do this. Working you Kentucky people into more of a frenzy than you already are in may be dangerous. I can see that wild look in your eyes… you’re starting to really believe. And you know what? From an objective standpoint, I’m here to tell you that an outright win is far from likely, but it wouldn’t shock me if it happens.
Why? Cause that Georgia team has issues y’all. They’re not the team they where last year at either line of scrimmage and they lack physicality. You can’t get shutout from the half yard line for 7 straight plays, no matter who you’re playing. Last week, Kentucky’s defense held Missouri to zero first downs in the entire second half. It seemed like every time I flipped to that game, Kentucky had the ball. What Kentucky has to do is what they’ve been able to do most of the year. Control time of possession and limit Georgia’s big play potential. If they can do that, there’s a path to winning this game. But I will say, the passing game is going to have to be able to do something or this one could get ugly.
The last time UK beat Georgia was 2009 in Lexington. The spread on that game was 9.5, which is the exact number many books have this one at now.
West Virginia +2 @ Texas
From the first quarter of the opener against my Vols, I knew this was not your typical West Virginia team. Last year Texas had the edge, considering their a Big 12 team that plays real football, they bloodied West Virginia on the ground. However, Dana Holgerson has this Mountaineers team looking much bigger defensively this year and they can play. I still have my eye on them as a legitimate playoff contender.
Texas had a hell of a deflating loss last week. They had no business losing to that average Oklahoma State team. But, more than anything, that’s an indicator that Tom Herman has this team close but still not quite ready to be CFB Playoff caliber.
At the end of the day, this is a Big 12 game, and no doubt points are getting put up. Between the two quarterbacks I like Will Grier more than Ehlinger.
Penn State @ Michigan -10
This line feels rotten. No doubt the public is happily gobbling up the Nittany Lion’s ten points. Those poor people. If it feels too easy, it probably is too easy.
Penn State has struggled playing in the Big House in recent years. They are 1-7 in Ann Harbor over their last 8 trips. Trace McSorely is a beast but taking on the Wolverine’s elite defense is a tough task. They rank 1st in the entire nation against the pass and in the top 10 against the run. I think Penn State is not at the same level they were the past two years and Michigan has clearly raised the bar. I plan on taking Michigan at these larger spreads until proven otherwise.
Missouri @ Florida -6
Lets not make this one too hard. Dooley’s offense in the Swamp vs a talented Florida defense is not going to go well. Speaking of Dooley, what has he done to Drew Lock? That kid came into the year as one of the highest touted qbs in the SEC, and last week he couldn’t manufacture a single first down in the entire second half, in their own stadium.
Missouri has struggled going on the road recently (1-4 ATS). Florida played a solid game against UGA, the only thing holding them back is Felipe ‘Pool Boy’ Franks. That kid could literally not play dead in a western. Even the quarterback whisper Dan Mullen doesn’t know how to help this guy. If Florida and Missouri switched qbs on Saturday, the Gators would win by 4 tds minimum.
Notre Dame @ Northwestern +9.5
This line keeps moving up and I’m coaxing it all the way. When does Notre Dame slip up?? I said last week that they would, but I’m starting to get nervous. The last thing I feel like watching December 29th is Bama beat the shit out of them. On the bright side, when that does happen, it’ll shine more of a light on how flawed this playoff system is. No conference championship game for ND and other teams that win them get left out? I’m hoping the more power five conference champions that get jobbed, the more likely the commissioners demand an expanded format.
Northwestern has won four games in a row, and you have to give it to Pat Fitzgerald, whatever he’s doing is working. Winning at Northwestern is no easy feat. They play hard and they aren’t afraid of anyone. They played Michigan to within three points earlier in the year and that makes me think they have an opportunity to keep this one close.
Alabama -14.5 @ LSU
They have a saying in my country for people like Nick Saban. ‘The coyote of the desert always likes to eat the heart of the young, where the blood drips down to the children for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
Teaser 1: Temple +16.5, Ohio State -12, Kentucky +16
Teaser 2: WVU +8, Michigan -4, Florida (pick)