First, a brief recap of what all of this nonsense is about: In order to determine whether my diet would consist of Ramen noodles (mix them with ranch dressing and you've got yourself a real treat!) or large quantities of meats and cheeses if I ever did embark down the slippery slope of minor high-stakes gambling that would most likely lead me to living out my days in a YMCA shelter, I shall conduct an experiment of the opposite of the scientific variety.
I'll be wagering 20 Confederate dollars on each bowl game (minus the three I ignored during my Christmas/traveling odyssey) and at the end of the bowl season, we'll see just how poor I would have become. Or just how vast my estate would be. Bring me another $100 bill, Pendleton, I can't seem to light this fire properly!
2010-11 Bowl Season Dollars as of 12/30: -$20
Record Against the Spread: 5-6-1
Meineke Car Care Bowl
South Florida vs. Clemson (-6)
Rationale: Hey, Clemson, remember when you led Auburn 17-0 with 1:14 left in the first half? Oh, and remember in overtime when Kyle Parker couldn't hit a wide open wide receiver in the end zone to win the game? You do? Excellent. Now, BURN IN A FIRE.
Pick: South Florida (+6); I know they're going to lose, but screw you, Clemson
Hyundai Sun Bowl
Notre Dame vs. Miami (-3)
Rationale: I read earlier this week that both teams forbid its players from slipping across the border into Juarez, which is a perfect analogy for both of these teams' seasons. They both embraced playing it safe, no risk, EL PASO miserable football. However, only the Hurricanes have ever sniffed danger remotely close to what's going on in Juarez simply because they live in Miami. I've played Grand Theft Auto Vice City. I know what goes on there.
Pick: Miami (-3)
AutoZone Liberty Bowl
Georgia (-7) vs. Central Florida
Rationale: This is sort of like a boys high school basketball team playing the UConn women's team. You take the high school team. Does this analogy make sense? Not sure. But in the SEC vs. CUSA, the CUSA always represents the UConn women's basketball team.
Pick: Georgia (-7)
Florida State vs. South Carolina (-3)
Rationale: Stephen Garcia off his leash for nearly a month? Steve Spurrier sharpening his golfer's tan since early December? YES, PLEASE.
Pick: South Carolina (-3)
Northwestern vs. Texas Tech (-10)
Rationale: When Houston Nutt and company get fired in December 2011, my coaching wish list will look something like this:
Kevin Sumlin at Houston
Tommy Tuberville at Texas Tech
Did he outrage everyone and act like an asshole in the way he left Ole Miss? No doubt. Was he right in his demands that, you know, Ole Miss put money into its football program? Of course he was. If not for him smashing us in the back of the head with a shovel, we don't have a stadium that seats 60K+ with suites and club level seating or one of the nicest indoor complexes in the country. I have forgiven him and embrace his return. At the very least, he would not retain Tyrone Nix.
Pick: Texas Tech (-10)
Florida vs. Penn State (no line)
Rationale: A waste of time if there's no line. I refuse to invest any more time in what will most certainly be a horrible, horrible game.
Capital One Bowl
Alabama (-10) vs. Michigan State
Rationale: Had Alabama's loss to Auburn been one that prevented the Crimson Tide from going to Atlanta, this is a heavy Michigan State lean (see: Sugar Bowl vs. Utah). However, since Alabama had been eliminated from SEC title contention before that game, I think they might show up for this one. Plus, I can't in good conscience take a team that inexplicably got DRILLED by Iowa in the middle of an undefeated season.
Pick: Alabama (-10)
Progressive Gator Bowl
Mississippi State (-4.5) vs. Michigan
Rationale: You know what really grinds my gears? The exponentially annoying red-headed lady in the Progressive commercials yelping and making jokes about insurance. You know what's enjoyable about insurance? Nothing. Especially getting it. Pain. In. The. Ass. Which is why you should shop with Progressive, Gray!
Pick: Mississippi State (-4.5)
Wisconsin vs. TCU (-3.5)
Rationale: Has any team gotten more mileage out of beating a shitty team than TCU? Ohio State is probably a correct answer for one of their meaningless victories over Michigan, but at least this season, TCU's win over Utah is the most absurdly blown-out-of-proportion win. Utah is awful. Awful. Double awful. And TCU destroyed them. Congratulations. Let's move on. To a thrashing by the hands and meaty thighs of Wisconsin.
Pick: Wisconsin (+3.5)
Tostitos Fiesta Bowl
UConn vs. Oklahoma (-17)
Rationale: If there are Sports Gods and they possess a sense of humor, they would make the UConn women's team lose its next 90 games.
Pick: Oklahoma (-17)