No need to sugarcoat things — the last two weeks have not been good. We went 5-8 (I gave out an Outkick VIP pick on Western Kentucky to our members on Saturday afternoon on the message board) and our record is now 27-23 on the season, 54% winners on the year.
These are the times that try men’s souls.
But do we go gently into the good night?
Of course not.
We rage against the dying of the light, onward, upward to 11-0 this week, boys and girls.
We. Get. Rich.
Plus, let’s be honest, your next senator from the Great State of Tennessee can’t be bad at college football gambling. How could I do that and be respected anywhere if that were the case?
Once more, I encourage you to sign up for Outkick VIP, as we will be having an event next Thursday in Nashville at Zanies — buy tickets here if you aren’t a VIP, sign up for free if you are a VIP on our message board — and we’re doing a VIP event on next Friday in St. Louis too.
Basically, if you aren’t a pussy you should be an Outkick VIP. You get a free shirt and access to our events across the country. Plus, you win money gambling by getting the picks the moment they come out.
Okay, here we go, we’re going 11-0 this week.
USC at Washington State +6.5 (Now Washington State +3.5)
I’ve been saying for several weeks that I don’t just like Washington State to cover here, I love them to win outright. So when I saw this line open at Washington State +6.5 I immediately posted on the Outkick VIP message board to take Washington State. Since then the line has dropped to 3.5. ]
I obviously still like it here as well, but the line move is a great example of why the Outkick VIP subscription is worth it. The moment these lines come out I’m posting my picks on the message board and so often the lines have tended to move in my direction. It was the difference, for instance, last week in winning or losing the Blood Bank Guarantee bet.
Mike Leach’s boys are winning this game.
So start off your gambling weekend on Friday with an easy cover. Or go ahead and get even more aggressive and take Washington State to win outright.
You win both ways.
Nebraska at Illinois +8 (Now Illinois +6.5)
Here’s an easy question for you, should Nebraska be a road favorite of over a touchdown over any team in the Big Ten right now? I honestly don’t think so.
Nebraska just beat Rutgers by 10 last week.
Illinois is awful, make no mistake about it, but they’re still a Big Ten team playing at home against a Nebraska offense that has been totally incompetent so far this year.
The Illini keep it close and may just win it outright.
Baylor at Kansas State -14 (Now Kansas State -17)
Last week Baylor played well against Oklahoma — killing our cover there — but I really don’t think that good play will travel on the road and translate against Bill Snyder, who has had two weeks to get over a tough road loss to Vanderbilt.
I think Baylor probably played its best game of the year against Oklahoma — which happened to coincide with Oklahoma’s worst game — and the result is they regress to the mean this week.
That means Kansas State wins by three touchdowns at home.
Ohio State at Rutgers +29 (Rutgers +30)
Rutgers has played a decent schedule already this season and we already took them as a big underdog in week one at home against Washington and got a cover there.
As talented as Ohio State is, it’s worth noting that the Buckeyes haven’t totally boat raced anyone this season. (I know they’ve won games by 34 and 31 points, but I don’t think they’re going to suddenly beat Rutgers by 50.)
This line has moved against us a bit since I picked it on Sunday — sometimes that happens, after all, I don’t have a magic wand when I pick these games at release — but I think Rutgers is much better this year than last year and the beatings Rutgers took last year are still influencing the lines this year.
Which means, shudder, give me Rutgers and all the points this weekend against Ohio State.
South Carolina at Texas A&M -9.5 (Now Texas A&M -9.5)
I’m back to believing South Carolina is not very good, particularly on the offensive side of the ball. The past two weeks the Gamecocks have really struggled offensively against both Kentucky and Louisiana Tech and both of those games were at home.
Meanwhile I think Texas A&M, coming off a big win over Arkansas, is going to play with some swagger at home and for the first time all season won’t feel like they have the weight of the world on their shoulders. That bodes well for the Aggies off the jump.
I like A&M by double figures here.
Vanderbilt +10.5 at Florida and the under 42 (Now Vandy +9.5 and 42)
Look, I apologize to everyone for taking Vandy +19 against Alabama last weekend. I was completely and totally wrong. But I think that game was honestly more about how good Alabama was than it was about how bad Vandy was. Yes, the Tide rolled, but I think the Tide would have rolled over just about anybody in that game.
I’m still convinced, even after the win at Kentucky, that Florida is really bad on offense and I think Vanderbilt will be able to match up well with them defensively.
I see this as a 17-14 game and it wouldn’t shock me at all if Vandy went on the road and won.
So take the Dores and the under and if you want to try and get a really nice win, maybe sprinkle a bit of money on the Vandy moneyline as well.
Mississippi State at Auburn -10 (Now Auburn -9.5)
One of the things you learn if you watch a team and a coach is that there are frequently patterns that repeat themselves.
And when Auburn’s offense has been good under Gus Malzahn something interesting has happened, the Tigers haven’t necessarily started the season hot. Go back and look at the two years Auburn played for the national title, with Cam Newton and with Nick Marshall, both of those Auburn teams muddled through September before they started to hit their offensive stride and became offensive juggernauts.
Well, we’re five weeks into the season now and I think Auburn might be starting to hit its stride. Maybe, just maybe, last week wasn’t just about Missouri being awful, maybe it was also about Auburn finding itself offensively.
If so, Mississippi State is headed for trouble on the road at Jordan-Hare.
Georgia and Auburn’s defenses are very similar and I think Auburn will be able to stifle Mississippi State offensively.
Meanwhile I think Auburn’s offense will be solid.
So give me the Tigers here.
Ole Miss at Alabama -27.5 (Now Alabama -28)
I’m going to bet on Alabama for the rest of the season no matter what the line is.
You may think that’s crazy, but what I saw from the Tide against Vanderbilt was a level of dominance I have never seen before in an SEC football game.
My prediction for Ole Miss — pain.
Lots of pain.
Tide by 90.
Georgia at Tennessee, the under 47 (Now 47)
I’ve gone back and forth a ton on this game, but ultimately I believe Tennessee is going to play Georgia well. That is, I don’t think the team is going to quit on Butch and just get dominated here.
But I don’t have enough confidence to take the Vols, even with over a touchdown to spare, because a small part of me thinks Georgia could roll into Knoxville and win something like 31-3.
What I do feel comfortable with is that this will be an old school, run first game with neither team creating much space.
I honestly think it will look a great deal like Georgia’s road game against Notre Dame did.
This is effectively Butch Jones’s last stand at Tennessee. If he wins, he may coach the Vols for another couple of years. If he loses, I think he’ll be fired by November. So which will it be?
I don’t know for sure, which is why I’m taking the under.
Clemson at Virginia Tech +7.5
The question I keep asking myself is this — can anyone play a truly competitive game with Clemson in the ACC this year?
I think the answer has to be yes.
And if someone is going to do it, it has to be a team like Justin Fuente’s Hokie squad, which is rolling right now.
With that in mind, I think this line is just too much to give up with the Hokies playing at home at night. So give me Virginia Tech and the cover.
There you go, boys and girls, we’re going 11-0.