In case you HAVEN’T heard, there’s two stories out this week. One is in Sports Illustrated and the other on Yahoo Sports. One is an incredibly unbelievable tale of payouts for performance, academic scandal, drugs and sex and the other one is about Alabama and several other players for SEC schools that took money from an agent “Coordinator/Concierge” for players at Alabama and other SEC schools.
To put it bluntly: One of the articles is pure trash and while there may be some truth to it, most of the “named” sources were players that were either reprimanded or removed from the program altogether for academic reasons or violations of team rules. On the other hand, the Yahoo article provides texts and proof and reports the facts. Sad that an upstanding “news” agency, SI, appears to be trying to sell copy and garner hits on their website (That you have to sit through a COMMERCIAL for before you read the article) vs. simply reporting what was uncovered via good, investigative journalism. But that’s not my point here today….
Here’s the thing: Which program do you think the NCAA will come down on harder? You guessed it: Okie State will probably get hit with an investigation into whatever shenanigans that went on down there and Alabama will probably have nothing done to them, or receive a slap on the wrist at best, because, well, they’re Alabama. And even if they did do something like “Take away their National Championships”, well, everyone knows that they did it on the field and they cheated doing it, but what does it matter if schools like Alabama are never going to do ANYTHING TO CHANGE IT and continue to flaunt the rules that everyone else is trying to live by? And if its going on in the SEC, well, it’s happening everywhere. It’s just the extent that is happening is the only question…
Which makes the entire entity of the NCAA a farce to begin with. And the quicker some of these schools can get out of the problem of having to deal with the NCAA, the better.Which leads me to today’s item of interest: There has been a lot of chatter on some of the blogs about a “Division 4” of college football that would split from the NCAA and start playing by “Their Own Set Of Rules”, whatever that might mean. But the jist of it is that the Power 5 conferences (B1G, SEC, PAC12, ACC, Big 12 and domers) would more or less thumb their collective noses at everyone else and set up a league where they would only play each other and that would then lead to an 8 team play-off with the traditional bowls. (Orange, Rose, Sugar and Fiesta) Now, I have no idea whether or not that would ever happen, but I’m starting to see where the college landscape is going and the powers that be are ticked off with having to share the pie that they created with the likes of Boy’s State and Northern Illinois when schools like that make it into a BCS bowl. The big boys don’t like sharing….Their Attitude: Too bad, so sad for the capable little up-starts that want to take on the world.
And while I’m not sure that’s fair (Another word which I’ve come to hate, by the way), is it fair that the elites in the collegiate football world (that isn’t built on a level playing field, anyway…Just like some schools have and warrant higher tuition) have to share the wealth? What makes sense for everyone? Can their be a "simple solution?
I dunno….but I’m starting to think this thing is going to change a lot sooner rather than later…The big boys don’t want to lose the money that TV and bowls generate and its looking a lot more like they are willing to pay athletes (because they can afford it) to keep a stranglehold on everyone else.
But all that isn’t why you’re reading here on Friday! We’re here to make the picks for the weekend and there are some DANDY games to get some fantasy coin down on so let’s not waste any more time!
Washington @ the Illini (+9.5): I was not going to touch this game and then I looked again at some stats and stuff like that and something caught my eye. The Illini offense is doing good things and while I’m not saying they can win the game, at home I think they can keep it close…and they were good to me last week!Take Illinois and the points for $35
Youngstown State @ Sparty (-27): First of all, to get a spread THIS BIG, you need to assume that your offense can actually score. And I'm not sure Sparty's offense has scored 27 points in two games COMBINED....So far, Sparty has shown me NOTHING that makes me believe that the offense is going to somehow magically fix itself this week. And the Defense can’t always score points….Therefore,Take Youngstown and the 27 for $25
Domers @ Purdue (+21): Oh man, I SO WANT TO TAKE Purdue in this game and I would love to see the Domers come out flat after last week’s Under the Lights game….But, I can’t trust what they are calling “Football” now in West Lafayette…Therefore I will PASS….
Vandy @ USC(-13.5): Here’s another one that I want to jump on the Vandy Underdog Wagon and I want to believe that Georgia exposed some things that the rest of the SEC is going to be able to use…Unfortunately, I don’t believe in Vandy enough….This will probably be the regret game of the week…I PASS….UCLA (+4.5) @ Nebraska: If Nebraska hadn’t laid that egg earlier a couple of weeks ago, I would be very inclined to jump all over them in a revenge situation at home. But….I just can’t trust the children of the corn here….I PASS….
Louisville (-13) @ Kentucky: Again, this spread seemed about right until I actually looked at what Western Kentucky did stat-wise to Kentucky and I have a feeling that Charlie Strong is going to try and get all the style points that he can against a weak SEC foe…and an SEC school that didn’t even give him a phone call when the job opened up…So,Take Louisville and lay the 13 for $75
Tennessee @ the Quack Attack (-27.5): Wow…I wanted to say Tennessee was getting better, but when you see a spread like this, it makes you realize that whatever the Cremesicles have done, it’s nowhere close to the level that the Ducks are playing at. With the Ducks at home, this spread could get covered before halftime. I’llTake the Ducks and lay the 27.5 for $75
Ohio (-16) @ Cal: Looked at this game a couple of different ways, but I don’t think the Bears are ready for what Urban Legend is bringing. Even though I do believe that the suckeye defense is suspect, I believe the offense is now clicking. It will take till the 4th quarter (unlike the Ducks above), but I think ohio covers…Take ohio and lay the 16 for $40
Game of the Century XXXIII (or whatever) A&M(+9): So, Satan is somehow a 9 point favorite IN College Station at Kyle Field, home of the 12th man…..Hmmm….I’m a smart guy…At least, I like to think I am. I know that Satan has probably done nothing but figure out how to stop Johnny Football for however many days it’s been since they last played. However, the B1G, the domers and everybody else that had to face D-Rob did all that stuff too…Sometimes scheme and coaching can’t beat superior talent…And Johnny Football wants this, as does Sumlin. Therefore,Take Texas A&M and the 9 for $40
Akron @ Michigan (-37.5): I can’t believe I’m about to do this…But after looking at Akron’s stats and who they’ve played…God help them in Ann Arbor. I really think this boils down to how long Hoke leaves the offensive starters in and how hard the 2 and 3 deep guys go after it.
Take Michigan and lay the 37.5 for $75
Oregon – Michigan-Louisville for $30Starting Bank: $1,246
Total Bet: $385