So, last week went pretty much as expected. I took the Michigan-Illinois over, partly because my dipshit co-worker liked the under, but mostly because I expected Michigan to hit the 49.5 points by themselves. They came awfully damn close, running up 45 points, but they needed a little help from Illinois to get to the promised land. A garbage time touchdown is all it would have taken. Or two field goals. Or three fucking safeties, if you wanna be a Kirk about it. Unfortunately, they couldn't do it.
In fact, this is the closest Illinois came to scoring:
(Actual game footage)
Anyway, it's a brand new week and that means a brand new opportunity to fuck up a prediction. This week I'm trying something new again. My mom is visiting from Pleasant Mountain, so I thought I'd ask her advice with my pick. I waited until she was a few Sauv's deep, then I showed her the grid:
Minnesota, based solely on my cultural memory, sucks. They do not, however, suck bad enough to lose by 20 to Wisconsin. The Vegas-implied score of that game is around 32-13. Though Minnesota is familiar with that type of score, I think they bring just enough rival-hate and anticonvulsants to keep it within 2 touchdowns.
Indiana is on the road. Indiana is an underdog. Indiana doesn't cover as a road dog. Even against a service academy. Navy wins by a score and half. Land ho.
Northwestern has been covering everything this year and still gets no love from the gamblers. That's probably because fuck Northwestern. Wait, but also fuck Nebraska. Hmmm yes, fuck them both. The tiebreaker on this one is the trend, so I'll take the fucktheWildcats and the 5 points.
I prefer to stay away from the battle of the jerkoffs. This game will go as Denard goes and that's somewhere between Michael Vick and Michael Vick. Either the Spartan defense goes into beast mode and holds him to Vandenberg numbers or he goes fucking video game stats on them and Michigan locks it up by halftime. This could be anywhere from a 17-16 Spartan win to a 42-10 Wolverine dicksmashing.
Ohio State opened as a 14.5 point favorite versus Purdue on Monday. That jumped all the way up to 17 by Tuesday and has steadily risen to 19 points. That kind of movement ain't no joke, the money is coming in heavy on OSU. However, I'm not sold. That is a shitass ton of points and even though Purdue has fucked me like a snake in a lawnmower this year, I'm confident they can stay within a couple TD's (plus maybe a field goal). Ohio State is average against the spread and Purdue has been historically very good ATS versus the Buckeyes.
Deferring to the expert:
I promised you some expertise, so god damn it here it is. What you're about to read is the actual conversation I had with my mom, who is totally awesome.
Me: I need you to pick a winner for this weekend. Here are the spreads.
Mom: IOWA! Alright, tell me what to do. Ok, what does 5 mean? 19.5 seems good. What are all these things?
Me: The team in bold is the one that's supposed to win and the spread is how much they're supposed to win by. So if you choose the underdog, you basically start off the game with that amount of points.
Mom: Where's Iowa?
Me: Right here, but you can't choose them because that's too easy.
Mom: Well god damn it anyway.
Me: What do you think about Northwestern? Where is Northwestern?
Mom: Well, it's north and west...it's...Montana? Or, Wyoming? How far do we go to play?
Me: Nevermind, let's just think about who you want to pick.
Mom: The Minnesota and Wisconsin one?
Me: What is Minnesota's mascot?
Mom: Well, it's cold there so...something snow shoes? Or penguins. The Minnesota Penguins.
Me: Correct, what about Wisconsin?
Mom: Oh, cheese. The Wisconsin Cheeseheads.
Me: That's close enough, who should we bet on?
Mom: Minnesota. (BOOM, official pick.)
Me: So if Wisconsin wins 38-21, who wins the bet?
Mom: Hold on. (sets wine glass down and does finger math.) Minnesota?
Me: Nice, so how much money should we put on them?
Mom: Is this real money or pretend?
Me: Totally real.
Mom: What's normal?
Me: Any amount you want.
Mom: Four dollars.
Mom: Or no...five dollars.
Me: Done. Who do you like better, Michigan or Michigan State?
Mom: Because they're in bold.
Me: No, forget about that, I just meant which team do you like better?
Mom: Well, it's like how there's Iowa and Iowa State and I like Iowa so I like Michigan because it doesn't have the State after it.
Me: That makes sense.
Mom: (Sigh) No, it doesn't.
Me: What's your prediction for Iowa - Penn State on Saturday?
Mom: Iowa wins by.......tell me a good score. They're gonna get like 2 touchdowns. How much are touchdowns? Six? Is it six or seven points? The Cotton boy is going to get a touchdown. Who else plays? Ok, I'm gonna say 27 to 13.