Thursday, September 03, 2009

SEC Picks of the Week

For the first time in three weeks a spectacular video of Europe is not starting out a post in this spot, which depending on your affection or lack thereof of the band, can be a good or bad thing. I will miss my daily search for yet another video of the song that makes no sense. There’s nothing like a countdown in which it’s never mentioned what we’re about to reach. Easily one of the most confusing songs of all-time. But awesome.

So now that college football season is upon us, it’s time for me to break out my favorite post to write, my weekly SEC picks. You may hate them (possibly the picks themselves and reading someone pick games), but know that I thoroughly enjoy doing this. Probably a little too much. Anyway, if you’ve never read this before, I go through all the SEC games for the week, make a few comments that rank from absurd to blindly ignorant to spiteful and hopefully select the winner. These picks are made free from any sort of point spread because the NCAA tells me gambling is borderline illegal even though they require schools to publish weekly injury reports. Plus, any thoughts I have involving point spread winners will be kept to myself for my financial benefit and not yours.

Last season, I slapped together a 64-19 record (.771) and was headed for an .800 season until a last week debacle sent me under .800. So my goal this season is to crack the .800-mark, which can be done if I break my habit of choking at the worst time possible.

South Carolina at North Carolina State
Last season, this game opened college football and we saw the Gamecocks destroy NC State 34-0. This season, I don’t see it being that bad, but as far as I know (and I know nothing about NC State) the Wolfpack aren’t going to be much better and South Carolina could be slightly better or slightly worse. In short, I have no idea. And yes, you can expect this detailed analysis all season long. I’m taking South Carolina here.

Kentucky at Miami (OH)
As I mentioned yesterday, Kentucky could be a sneaky team in the SEC this year. Not that they’re going to dominate, but it’s entirely possible that in the last week of November you’ll look at the SEC standings and say, “Wait, Kentucky has eight wins?” They have three for sure loses Florida, Alabama and Georgia, but every other game is completely winnable. I’m very interested in this Kentucky team. It’s entirely possible Miami could be one of those 10-2 MAC teams (how would I know, I don’t do research), but I’ll take Kentucky.

Directional School at Tennessee
I struggle to put into words how excited I am about the rise (which has already happened) and eventual fall of the Lane Kiffin/Ed Orgeron regime. As I’ve written before, my money is on midway through the 2010 season. Good times are indeed ahead. Vols win.

Jackson State at Mississippi State

Anthony Dixon is suspended for a game. He’s suspended for a half. He might actually play. He’s going to start. Dan Mullen certainly comes from the Urban Meyer school of discipline. Also, he doesn’t want to get fired. State avoids a Maine disaster.

Georgia at Oklahoma State

Big 12 school with an all-world offense getting lots of hype going against an SEC school that is underrated and has a defense that’s much better than anyone Oklahoma State has seen. Does this sound familiar? Something to do with the Cotton Bowl. And I remember Florida playing in some other game in which they defeated a Big 12 team. I’m sure it was nothing. Georgia it is.

Missouri State at Arkansas
Hopefully, Arkansas can avoid a UL-Monroe near-disaster.

Louisiana Tech at Auburn

One person Gene Chizik will not be calling for some thoughts on Louisiana Tech is Sylvester Croom. Auburn’s win will account for one-sixth of Chizik’s career wins.

Charleston Southern at Florida

Western Carolina at Vanderbilt
Anything is possible with Vanderbilt when they’re favored in games. It’s the underdog role that allows them to play well. I say Vandy avoids a devastating loss by a narrow margin.

Alabama vs. Virginia Tech
Much like Clemson was last year, Virginia Tech is an ACC team that gets way too much hype for not being that good. They’ve made their national reputation on beating other ACC teams and losing to any team that’s even remotely good. Their offense stinks, they have no quarterback and they’ve lost their top running back. In the past five seasons when Virginia Tech stepped outside of the ACC and played teams in BCS conferences, they’ve piled up a 6-6 record with two of those wins coming over mighty Cincinnati.

Oh, they’ll go 10-2 or 9-3 because they are the best of the mediocre in the ACC, but look for them to get crushed against Alabama. The speed of Alabama’s defense is something they last saw when LSU dismantled them 48-7 in 2007. This won’t end well for the Hokies.

LSU at Washington
Oh, to be able to see those from Louisiana colliding with the good folks of the Pacific Northwest. What a show that will be. What won’t be a show is this game. LSU dominates.

Ole Miss at Memphis
Normally, I’m terrified of this game, but a strange calm has come over me the past few weeks. I realized Memphis really isn’t very good and that they’re not used to playing against the speed they’ll see on defense and offense on Sunday, and barring multiple turnovers on Ole Miss’ part, this one won’t be close. Well, that and I remembered a clueless Ed Orgeron defeating Memphis three straight years. The only thing that would make Sunday better than a crushing Ole Miss victory is a crushing Ole Miss victory followed by the dismissal of the hack that is Tommy West.

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