Week 3 starts early, with Cal at NEV tonite. And it’s maybe the toughest week of the year to call, too, since there are a passel of cross-country match-ups and only 2 wks of track record to go on…though these can *sort of* work in your favor, in some cases, since local playing advantages/drawbacks, which are pretty much eternal, can mean more against the spread than whether somebody comes in with impressive back-to-back wins…over Strayer College and Keystone State (the Kops, I’ve always assumed). All right, you’ve been warned…
1. Cal (-3) @ NV. Good game…but not to bet on. Watch Kaepernick throw 300 and go 400TY or sth as NV beats the spread and wins. Which I won’t be happy about, but that’s what Cal *does*, see: they look great, then deflate like a frickin’ balloon. Go ahead, Oski, show me.
2. WSU @ SMU (-23). Wazzu plays a gallant 1st half, but (sorry) then reverts to form. They *could* cover, but don’t bet it. I’m not.
3. ASU @ WISC (-14). After beating 2 nobodies and 2 more acceptable sparring partners, respectively, these guys are ready for…sth. Prolly tied for toughest call o’ the day (with Cal), this is my Upset of the Week, as the Scum Devils grow up and beat the spread. They could even win: look at the rosters; look at the confs; it could happen.
4. USC (-12) @ MN. Well, you *could* say “look at the rosters; look at the confs” again—but I won’t. The Rubbers are as modest an 18th-ranked team as you’ll find, and MN has stunk. SC wins, stays ranked (grr) but doesn’t beat the spread against low-end mediocrity. Dumb game.
5. NEB (-3) @ U Dub. Another upset, ‘cause it’s always been mysteriously hard for good visitors to win in Seattle, as the Cornholers discover this week. Tough-o.
6. Louisville @ OSU (-20). There’s a line on this game?!? In Corn Valley, one or both of the Bruthuhs Rodgers is/are going to go berserk. Bet it.
7. Port St @ Orygun. Welp, there isn’t on this one, and for obvious reasons. Sorry, Westie, but there’s a huge Viking funeral coming to a screen near you. But maybe it isn’t that traumatic—I mean, it’s kinda of an in-the-family thing. If your family’s the Corleones…Anyway, ugly, yeah; when you need the pts for nat’l ranking, this is what happens.
8. Houston (-3) @ UCLA. I called this one last wk. UCLA has better personnel than they’ve shown, and their win here will surprise only people who don’t follow the conf (incl. many in TX, a great state for hs f’ball, who *should* track their product better). Neuheisel keeps job, ho-hum.
9. Ioway @ Zona (-1). Zona has beaten embarrassing teams sufficiently embarrassingly, but so what, their ranking is a gift…until they beat Ioway by 17 or sth, after 3 desert air strikes early. Put some big rubles down on this “upset” – yeah, I’m sayin’ bet the collective farm.
10. Wake @ Stanford (-18). Grudge time. How exactly Snodfart “lost” to these, um, modestly demonic hordes last Sept. in…in…wherever their home field is was not much of a mystery: a 39 yd run by Toby Gerhardt was erased by a phantom “clip” (want to see the video, and hear the announcers go Whaaa…?), costing them the game and eventually him the Heisman. Think there's some residual ill-feeling in Palo Alto? Uh, you betcha.