Week thirteen... thirteen... How in the heck is it already the THIRTEENTH WEEK of college football season?! Seems like just yesterday we were cheering for Johnny as he made his triumphant return for the second half of the Rice game, and now we're counting down the quarters he has left in the maroon and white.
Our midweek MACtion and a horrible slate of Thursday night games are out of the way, and now we can press on to a mediocre collection of Saturday contests that largely serve as warmups for the rivalry games that lie ahead.
WEEK TWELVE IN REVIEW
How thin is the margin between a winning week and a losing week? This thin. Week twelve started off well, but fell apart like the Georgia secondary on 4th and 18 as the day wore on.
Clemson -10.5 vs Georgia Tech (+60 GBHs) A workmanlike performance, as early field goal drives gave way to touchdowns, and a Clemson team superior at 15+ positions on the field pulled away for a comfortable win and cover last Thursday.
Florida at Sakerlina -13 (-66 GBHs) Speaking of field goals, they're the enemy of home favorites looking to blow out an overmatched opponent. Florida got a couple of big plays that set up TDs, and Sakerlina kicked - count 'em off with us here - not one, not two, not three, not four, but FIVE big three pointers to win by five points. Red zone efficiency, kids.
Kansas +6.5 vs West Virginia (+60 GBHs) The most suspect line of the week delivered not just a cover but an outright upset. We keep preaching it, but give your dogs some moneyline love, too. This one was never in doubt after halftime, as the Jayhawks unleashed a fury not unlike the one seen when Charlie Weis enters an all-you-can-eat Buffet. Only a couple of garbage scores by the 'eers late got this inside of two touchdowns.
Georgia +4 at Auburn (-66 GBHs) Pain. The pain is so deep. It burns. With the heat of a thousand suns. We all have bad beat stories, and this one can be filed away with the best of 'em. Turns out it was a bad beat for the bookmakers, too. We can only hope the surgery that Gus Malzahn has to remove the horseshoe from his ass is equally as painful.
Texas +3 vs Oklahoma State (-66 GBHs) The line that seemed too easy was, in fact, that easy. Major Applewhite has tried to scheme around Case McCoy's multitude of deficiencies as quarterback, but against respectable competition, the flaws are evident. Once the sips fell behind behind by double digits, their fragile confidence was gone and there was no chance they had the explosiveness to play catch up.
Indiana at Wisconsin OVER 70 (-22 GBHs) Wisconsin defense, at least have the decency to let Indiana get some garbage time scores!
Oregon State at Arizona State OVER 65 (-22 GBHs) What the hell? Way too many punts, PAC 12. Waaaay too many punts.
Michigan State -6.5 at Nebraska (20 GBHs) Five turnovers? You are most charitable, Coach Pelini.
In aggregate, the Auburn miracle flipped what would have been a 24 GBH gain into a 102 GBH loss. But thems the breaks. Still in the black for the season, right?
Current Bankroll: 10295
THE GAME Wake Forest +5 vs Duke
It's come to this, America. Duke is a favorite on the road and is being embraced by the gambling public. Maybe the Mayans were right, the world DID end last December, and we're all living in some post-apocalyptic ethereal plane of fantasy. In all seriousness, Wake is well rested coming off a bye and Duke is in a let down spot after their thumping of an overrated Miami.
THE BET Wake Forest +5 (55 GBHs to win 50)
THE GAME LSU -4.5 vs Texas A&M
Putting emotions aside, the signs are there for this one. A&M is a road underdog embraced by the public, while the line has trickled upward in LSU's favor, indicating the professionals' choice of LSU. In bad weather, this game comes down to offensive balance. LSU can run the ball with Jeremy Hill, while A&M has increasingly become a one man gang in the form of Johnny Manziel. On Saturday, that won't be enough. We're even bumping our bet size for this one.
THE BET LSU -4.5 (77 GBHs to win 70)
THE GAME KSU -4.5 vs. Oklahoma
In case you need a reminder, Bill Snyder is a wizard. He's quietly put together another sound Wildcat team that can run decently, throw decently, and plays stiff defense when needed. OU, as we all know, is a pretty flawed team with a hodge podge offense that can't seem to get out of its own way. This line opened at 3.5 and despite balanced tickets on both sides, has eked upward as the wiseguys back KSU at home (or is it fade OU on the road?) Regardless, we concur.
THE BET KSU -4.5 (55 GBHs to win 50)
THE GAME Ole Miss +2.5 vs Missouri
Mizzou goes on the road for their first true test of the year against a healthy opponent that's amped up for Pinkel's group. And at night, too. Seemingly everyone you know is looking for easy money with the Tigers giving less than a field goal. Buuuut... the numbers keep telling us to fade Mizzou, and in the long run, the numbers are usually right.
THE BET Ole Miss +2.5 (55 GBHs to win 50)
THE GAME Michigan State -7 at Northwestern
Yet another curious road favorite that's garnering tons of public support. But the Spartan win in Lincoln last week was fueled more by Husker incompetence - the five turnovers we spoke of earlier - than Sparty's dominance. And while Northwestern is winless in B1G play, the Wildcats have been victimized by touch scheduling and a bevy of close, painful losses. This one isn't as lopsided as the average Joe thinks.
THE BET Northwestern +7 (55 GBHs to win 50)
Tennessee -2.5 vs Vanderbilt (22 GBHs to win 20) Is this a rivalry game now? Vawls at home.
Baylor at Oklahoma State OVER 78 Even with injured players sitting out, Art Briles stuffs scoreboards and stockings.
BYU at Notre Dame UNDER 55 (22 GBHs to win 20) An UNDER, you say? Yes, when it will be windy and snowy and cold and miserable and Touchdown Jesus will be asking for hot chocolate. Irish style, of course.
Let's cash some winning tickets this week. Won't be long before we're left to bet on college hoops, which is a surefire ticket to insanity.