Saturday, November 27, 2010

Alot to be Thankful For & Week 12 Picks

I understand I’m two days late of Thanksgiving, but I guess there is no limit on days when you could give thanks. So two days after Thanksgiving, here are some things I am thankful for.

Family- At the end of the day, this is what we all should be most thankful for. I thoroughly enjoy sitting down and stuffing my face with food while watching football. But without the people who mean something to you, this day could be just like any other day. Only where gaining five pounds in acceptable.

Food- I’m thankful for the delicious food I consumed on Thursday. It seems like it is a Thanksgiving tradition to discuss with others how much you ate on Thanksgiving. So here is my rundown: Two servings of Turkey, two servings of mashed potatoes, two biscuits, three servings of stuffing, one turkey sandwich, one serving of squash, one piece of apple pie, and one piece of pumpkin pie. That’s Sonny doin’ work.

Day after Thanksgiving Football- Not only are we given good football on Thanksgiving Day, but by the graces of God, we get good football the day after Thanksgiving as well. This year, the stakes of the marquee triple header were as high as any trio of games this season. Early we saw #11 Alabama blow a 24 point lead at home to #2 Auburn, which all but locked up the Heisman Trophy for Cameron Newton. Interesting fun fact about this game: During the first half of the game, which was easily controlled by Alabama, I was putting up Christmas decorations. It’s always been a tradition in the Giuliano household to put up Christmas decorations the day after Thanksgiving. This year, it was significantly different though. You see, it’s not exactly a winter wonderland in Fort Myers, Florida. So while putting up Santa Clauses and Nativity Scenes, I was looking out of the window at a palm tree instead of blustery snow. It was beyond surreal. It’s polar opposite of what I am used to. Just imagine if Roger Goodell, who handed the Super Bowl trophy to Drew Brees last year ended up handing the Super Bowl trophy to Michael Vick this year. I’m not trying to say New York weather is an inspirational story and Florida weather is a former convict winning the Super Bowl. I’m just saying it’s a drastic change… Anyways, let’s get back on topic. The second game featured #21 Arizona at #1 Oregon. Again, the favorite trailed at half. Oregon’s high powered offense took over in the second half and Oregon won easily.

Game three was a matchup between #4 Boise State and my #19 Nevada Wolfpack. I must say, this was one of the best college games I have seen in quite some time. For nearly four years I have been hyping the Pistol Offense, and the Nevada Wolfpack. Every year I jokingly predict that Nevada will beat Boise State. Little did I know, the year when Boise State looks more dominant than ever, Nevada pulled the upset. Nevada stormed back from down 17 in the 2nd half to tie it at 24 late in the 4th quarter. From there, what ensued was bananas. After Nevada tied it at 24, on Boise State’s first play, they scored from around 80 yards out. 31-24 Boise State. Nevada then put together a terrific five minute drive to tie the game with less than 20 seconds remaining. 31-31, all tied up. Regulation is not over yet. Kellen Moore launches a bomb with less than ten seconds left that is complete to Titus Young with only one second left. Boise State’s senior kicker Kyle Brotzman has a chance to win the game, and cement the Moore to Young throw as one of the ten greatest college football plays ever: but he pushes the kick right… Overtime in Reno my friends. Boise has the first possession in overtime, and is forced to settle for a field goal. Well, an attempted field goal. In what turned out to be the biggest choke job in college football history, Kyle Brotzman missed two field goal attempts inside of 30 yards; one of which would have won the game for Boise State, and the other which would have put Boise State on top. Nevada’s freshman walk-on kicker nailed the game winning field goal in overtime… I guess you could say it was a pretty good day of football.

NFL and NBA- Although I’m thankful for these two great leagues every year, this year it means more. Why? Well, next year we might not have any Thanksgiving football. I might not be angry with the Miami Heat. The threat of two potential work stoppages scares the ever living hell out of me. In fact, nothing would crush me more than if both the NFL and NBA ceased to exist next year. If that does happen, I will grow a beard, not shower for days at a time and sit in my closet rocking back and forth as I play out game scenarios in my head, and probably announce the games out loud myself.

The Chicago Bears- I don’t know if I am more surprised or happy that the Bears are 7-3. Well, actually I’m definitely more happy than surprised. After their week 4 debacle versus the Giants, I thought that there wasn’t a snowballs chance in hell that this team would be 7-3. I thought there was no way this team would be 7-3 after Jay Cutler threw four interceptions to DeAngelo Hall alone. But hey, they are 7-3 and sitting atop the NFC North. I have said before that they are the worst 7-3 team ever. If they can defeat this Philadelphia juggernaut this week, I think I can finally start believing in my Bears.

Brett Favre- Thanks for coming back Brett! I love the way you’ve played this year, and I hope to see you next year!

The Miami Heat- Oh wait, no I’m not! Why should I be at all happy about what is going on in South Beach. LeBron and Wade can’t play together. Bosh wants to chill. Haslem is out for the year. Spoelstra is super close to being fired. The supporting cast is exceedingly crappy. They have lost three straight games… on and on and on. In reality, LeBron made a huge mistake. I think very soon, unless something changes, he is going to realize this. It’s a sad situation. I know I like LeBron more than the next guy, but we are going to see three great players careers suffer because of this move. We will never know what the maximum potential of LeBron, Wade and Bosh was because they are taking turns deferring to each other. As a basketball fan this has to be disappointing. I don’t care how much you despise LeBron James as a person or a player, it is unfortunate that his big decision robbed the basketball universe of potentially one of the five greatest players of all time.

NFL Wackiness- Do we know who the best team is yet? I’m not sure we do. Could it be New England? What about either of the New York teams? Philadelphia? Atlanta? Baltimore? Pittsburgh? I could list maybe six more teams, but that is just getting redundant. Personally, I love the fact that we have absolutely no idea what teams are going to be in the Super Bowl. I cannot think of a season in any sport where going into the year, you could make a legitimate case for one third of the league as potential champions. It just never happens. But it does this year.

Gus Johnson- This is a man every sports fan should be thankful for. Not only does Gus Johnson bring intensity like no other announcer, it just so happens Gus Johnson is in a serious hot streak right now. Five weeks running, Gus has been involved in a game that has been absolutely bananas. Let me recap.

Week 6- Houston scores with 11 seconds left to defeat Kansas City 35-31.
Week 7- Cincinnati comes back from down 21 points to take the lead against Atlanta. Atlanta wins 39-32.
Week 8- Kansas City beats Buffalo 13-10, in the first of back to back overtime games for Gus.
Week 9- Detroit almost upsets New York, but the Jets come back and win in overtime 23-20.
Week 10- The Hail Mary. Enough said. Jacksonville defeats Houston 31-24.
Week 11- Buffalo is getting blown out early, then proceeds to go on a 42-3 scoring run to defeat Cincinnati 49-31.

We can only hope that Gus can keep this miraculous run of mind-blowing games up until the end of the season. If this can somehow carry over to March Madness, God help us all, and especially Gus, because if he keeps up at this pace his head will explode by the Sweet Sixteen.

Fantasy Football- The Fantasy Football Gods have been kind to me this year. In my two Fantasy Football leagues I am in, I have a combined 15-7 record, and sit in 2nd place in one league, and 3rd in the other. After poor seasons last year, I have rebounded and appear in the playoff picture in two leagues.

Christmas in a month- When I was working on my list of Things I Am Thankful for at about 2 A.M. early Thanksgiving morning, I realized that Christmas was really close. So I went to and started listening to Christmas music. If you feel like getting in the Christmas spirit, I suggest you do the same. If you are reading this on Saturday (the day this entry came out) then smile, because Christmas is exactly one month away. God, I’m giddy!

2005 Texas Longhorns Football- Not only did this team give me a champion and give us the greatest National Championship game ever… but it also reminds us that Vince Young wasn’t always a lazy cry baby. In all likelihood Vince Young will never be a productive NFL quarterback. Typing that previous sentence saddens me. Vince Young was my favorite NFL Player, and I guess he still is until he is out of the league. Again, I’m saddened by the previous sentence. Instead in remembering him as the injury prone whiner of the Tennessee Titans, I get to remember him as the inspire leader of a Texas Longhorns team you knew wasn’t going to lose just because he was their Quarterback.

Big East/NFC West- Yes, that’s right. I’m thankful for the worst BCS Conference in College Football, and the worst Division in the NFL. Why you ask? Well, they deserve a little credit… right? I guess not. Honestly, I’m thankful because there is a good chance that we will see a team with a losing record makes the playoffs (that’s only happened, well never) and because the Big East gets an automatic BCS berth. And that means there is one pick you can feel 100 percent safe with when making Bowl Game Selections, and that is the Fiesta Bowl: Big 12 Winner over Big East Winner. I’m thankful for because they have allowed me to take my talents to Podcasts. Remember to check this blog for updates on podcasts featuring The Captain and others. Speaking of which, here is a Podcast from November 24th which featured Paul Clark and I picking Week 12 NFL Games, and discussing the College Football world.

College Football
Ohio State over Michigan
Michigan State over Penn State
Miami FL over South Florida
LSU over Arkansas
Florida over Florida State
North Carolina State over Maryland
South Carolina over Clemson
Georgia over Georgia Tech
Oklahoma over Oklahoma State
USC over Notre Dame

New England over Detroit
Dallas over New Orleans
New York Jets over Cincinnati
Minnesota over Washington
Houston over Tennessee
Atlanta over Green Bay
Cleveland over Carolina
Pittsburgh over Buffalo
New York Giants over Jacksonville
Oakland over Miami
Seattle over Kansas City
Denver over St. Louis
Baltimore over Tampa Bay
Philadelphia over Chicago
San Diego over Indianapolis
San Francisco over Arizona

Current Records
College Football- 55-35 (6-4 last week)
NFL- 82-49 (13-2 last week due to forgetting to pick the Tampa Bay vs. San Francisco Game)
Yahoo! College Football Picks- 123-108 (11-8 last week, 3,423rd in the country)

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Podcast Update

The Captain has taken his talents to the world of podcasting. So far, three podcasts have been done in an attempt to get my feet wet. Check them out by copying/pasting them above.

Episode One (Featuring Collin Stucko)-

Episode Two (Featuring Paul Clark)-

Episode Three (Featuring Paul Clark)-

Saturday, November 20, 2010

College Basketball Preview and Week 11 Picks

I’ll be completely honest. My build up and preparation to this College Basketball season has been far less than it usually is. That isn’t a good sign when I’m getting ready to write a college basketball preview. I realized that my knowledge level was significantly lower than usual when I started writing a preview, and how no idea what to write. Don’t get me wrong, I am more than excited for College Basketball this year. However, I just hadn’t put myself in a mental state where I was fully ready for a College Basketball preview. I blame my lack knowledge on three things. First, I was totally stoked for the start of NFL and College Football, and neither have disappointed. In fact, I’ll go as far as saying I’m in love with these football seasons. Second, the fact that I have been preparing for this NBA season since LeBron decided to take his talents to South Beach might have something to do with my lack of preparation of College Basketball this year. Third, and most importantly, I have no favorite team in College Basketball. This really isn’t a huge issue. I have never had a consistent favorite team in College Basketball, and it hasn’t hindered my interest yet. I think it’s time for a change though. Instead of having one or two year affairs with a team, it’s time for me to settle down with a school.

This decision isn’t as simple as me just choosing a team. Actually, I have no decision to make. Instead, I’m leaving it to fate. Let me backtrack. Prior to last year’s tournament, I had the same feelings as I do now. I need a favorite team in College Basketball. Shouldn’t someone who is as big of a fan as me have a favorite team? So I left it to fate. Whichever team won the 65 team tournament would be my new team. Well, a monkey wrench was thrown into my plan. Duke won the tournament, and I refused to call Duke my favorite team. That wasn’t going to happen.

Well, I’m back at it again this year. However, reluctantly Duke isn’t going to be excluded. If Duke wins the 2011 tournament (gulp) they will be my favorite team. Sure, that sounds really similar to a guy getting trapped with a girl because she gets knocked up, but in reality, it happens. I’m not an exception. If Kentucky wins the tournament, they will be my favorite team. In translation, that’s like marrying the really hot girl. The hot girl who might cheat on you though. If Austin Peay wins the tournament, they will be my favorite team. That’s finding the inner beauty in a not so pretty girl and marrying her. It doesn’t matter who it is. Whoever wins the tournament, I’m marrying.

Of course there are some stipulations. I can’t possibly be locked into a relationship forever. I need a way out. So after three years, I can get a divorce. If things are going south or if there is another team that has stolen my heart, I need to be able to get out of the situation. If I’m enjoying my time with my team, I can sign on for another three years. Also, at any point I can opt of my team if:
A. The team is a part of a major academic or legal scandal which disallows them from being in the NCAA Tournament or dismembers their team (fingers crossed Kentucky doesn’t win the title this year!)
B. Florida Gulf Coast University turns into a perennial Cinderella Team. Hey, they can’t get into the tournament this year, but when they are eligible watch out for my FGCU Eagles to become the next George Mason.
C. My team perishes in a plane crash. I don’t wish that scenario on any team, even Duke.

Before I realize where I want to be, I need to look at my past relationships.

North Carolina Tar Heels (2004-2005)- I guess you could say it was a little bit of a bandwagon pick. They had a lot of good players and I jumped on just in time for a title run. I was excited about it. It was my first title since the Michael Jordan Chicago Bulls days. Yeah, the Tar Heels and I had a good year.

Gonzaga Bulldogs (2005-2006)- My affair with the Gonzaga Bulldogs was due to one player: Adam Morrison. I quickly fell in love with Morrison. White boy with serious game (Gus Johnson thought he was perhaps the next Larry Bird), scoring machine, diabetes, slamming the basketball against his head… what isn’t to love? Unfortunately, the Bulldogs got knocked out in the Sweet 16. Although I was saddened, the closing moments of Gonzaga’s loss to UCLA remains Gus Johnson’s most legendary play call.

Florida Gators (2005-2007)- After I broke up with Gonzaga, it was time for a new team. I took the team of my brother Paul Clark, and made them my new team. Florida was my most successful relationship. In my two seasons with the Gators, I got two championships, Joakim Noah dancing crazily after winning the SEC Championship (check it out on You Tube) and the emergence of a phrase, rather a word, that I cannot say in this blog. I’ll just say this, if you were describing Lee Humphrey (who ironically enough Pauley was complimenting) you would not use this word.

Texas Longhorns (2006-2007)- While I was with the Gators, I had a relationship on the side with Texas. We never met, just texted. Think of it like a Brett Favre/Jenn Sterger relationship. I was big on Kevin Durant, and even went as far as picking Texas to reach the National Championship and lose to the Gators. That didn’t really work out. Durant was awesome, but the team underachieved. Little did I know, there was a third team in this tournament that would soon steal my heart.

Davidson Wildcats (2007-2009)- When I walked into HSBC Arena for the first round matchup of Davidson vs. Maryland, I had no idea that Stephen Curry would soon hold the key to my heart. Curry scored 30 points, and I was on board. Fast forward to the 2008 Tournament. I hadn’t yet fallen for Davidson, rather it was just like a girl you text occasionally. See how their doing, what’s going on but that’s it. I had faith in Stephen Curry, and picked Davidson to make a run to the Sweet 16. 40 points versus Gonzaga later, I was in love. Davidson was my team, for the rest of the tournament, and I was devastated when the Cinderella run ended in the Elite Eight versus Kansas. I stayed with Curry and Davidson for the 2008-2009 season, despite a significantly worse team. They failed to make the tournament, and for the first time, I was without a team in the NCAA Tournament.

Ohio State Buckeyes (2009-2010)- Looking back, I have no idea what this was about. I liked the way Evan Turner played, even though I didn’t really like him personally. I guess this is equivalent to getting a girl who you just had stuff in common with, despite no physical attraction. I liked that Turner was a triple double threat. I didn’t like him though. The Buckeyes lost in the Sweet 16 and I wasn’t too upset.

Obviously I have some preferences of teams I would like to see win this year’s tournament. I broke them up into four categories.

Cinderella Teams
Xavier- The Gonzaga of the East. Every season they seem to make a decent tournament run. I like that out of a team.

Gonzaga- The Xavier of the West. The original Cinderella team is a good choice to be a fan of. Plus, I have a year under my belt as a Gonzaga fan and a Gonzaga T shirt that might fit if I lost 15 lbs. Let the workouts begin!

Butler- The ultimate Cinderella. If Gordon Hayward’s half-court shot went in last year, I’m not even writing about needing a favorite team.

Power Houses
Michigan State- I wouldn’t be complaining about liking the team that seemingly makes the final four every year. Tom Izzo consistently assembles a good team.

Syracuse- Although I strongly despise “The Bandwagon” (if you don’t know what “the bandwagon” check out my Running Diary of the NCAA Tournament) Syracuse would be an enjoyable team to call my own.

Friend’s Favorites
Villanova- The Wildcats are the team of good friend Collin Stucko. One thing I’ve learned about Collin over the last ten years: He’s passionate about his teams and it’s a lot more fun to be rooting for the same team as he is than rooting for an opposing team. He can get mean and ignorant when his team is successful. Something I would love to join in on.

Florida- I had my two year run when they won back to back championships, mainly because of Paul Clark. Even the last few years I consistently root for Florida to do well. I have plenty of Gators gear. Florida is a near perfect match.

Emerging Contenders
Kansas State- I have to say I love Frank Martin almost as much as I love Jacob Pullen’s beard. Pullen won’t be in Manhattan forever, but winning a Title would be a nice start for mine and K State’s relationship.

Baylor- I’m not quite sure what I like about this team, but for some reason I already like them. Maybe it’s because they turned into a contender overnight. Maybe it is because they nearly eliminated Duke last year. Or maybe it’s because they recruit guys with names like Tweety Carter, Quincy Acy and LaceDarius Dunn.

Oregon- The Ducks are in no way an emerging contender. The fact is they have the coolest court in the NCAA. You can find it on the internet. Trust me, it’s a revelation. It is a challenger to Boise State for best home court/field.

The Picks
Sweet 16- Baylor, BYU, Duke, Florida, Illinois, Kansas, Kansas State, Kentucky, Michigan State, Missouri, Murray State, Ohio State, Pittsburgh, San Diego State, Syracuse, Villanova

Elite Eight- Duke, Florida, Kansas State, Michigan State, Ohio State, San Diego State, Syracuse, Villanova

Final Four- Duke, Kansas State, Michigan State, Syracuse

National Championship- Michigan State over Duke

I need to be optimistic that things aren’t going to be terrible for the next three years. Michigan State over Duke in the championship. Fingers Crossed!

College Football
Wisconsin over Michigan
NC State over North Carolina
South Florida over Pittsburgh
Stanford over California
Ohio State over Iowa
Virginia Tech over Miami FL
Arkansas over Mississippi State
Nebraska over Texas A&M
Baylor over Oklahoma
San Diego State over Utah

Miami over Chicago
Cleveland over Jacksonville
Pittsburgh over Oakland
Tennessee over Washington
New York Jets over Houston
Baltimore over Carolina
Green Bay over Minnesota
Kansas City over Arizona
Dallas over Detroit
Buffalo over Cincinnati
New Orleans over Seattle
Atlanta over St. Louis
New England over Indianapolis
Philadelphia over New York Giants
San Diego over Denver

Current Records
College Football- 49-31 (5-5 last week)
NFL- 69-47 (6-8 last week)
Yahoo! College Football Picks- 112-100 (7-12 last week, 3,290th in the country)

Saturday, November 13, 2010

LeBron and Week 10 Picks

I’m going to come right out and say it. Hell, I did on Thursday night when Miami was getting out played by Boston. Not just out played. But out smarted, out toughed and out hustled too. I’m sick of this Miami experiment. 9 games in, and I’m really pissed off at this whole situation. I wish LeBron stayed in Cleveland. For those of you who know me, you know that saying that is a really tough pill for me to swallow. If you go back to July 8th, I couldn’t have been more excited that LeBron left Lake Erie and took his talents to South Beach. July 9th when Miami introduces the new Big Three to the home crowd, I was thinking about how fun it would be to get to go the victory parade every year after they won the championship. Now we come back to the present, November 11th, and I’m wishing I could have been there when LeBron asked, “What should I do?” Knowing what I know now, this is what I would have told him.

LeBron: What should I do?

Me: Well, if you are looking to make a big mistake, then Miami is your premier choice. Go for it Bron! You want no championships, take your talents to South Beach. You want people to hate you, then Welcome to Miami! I know Miami sounds great. You, D Wade, and Bosh. That’s 3 of the top 15 players. So you think… It turns out Chris Bosh is going to be less effective than Udonis Haslem. Trust me, Bosh is soft, and he WILL disappear in big games. Playing with D Wade could be fun. You guys will have some awesome fast breaks against crappy teams and make a few Sport Center Top 10’s. That isn’t what it is going to be like though. How do you feel about standing in the corner and watching Wade go to work? Sounds like a riot doesn’t it? And then get this, when you feel like taking a turn, he’ll stand in the corner for you. What a teammate! Speaking of teammates, you have Eddie House, Joel Anthony, Carlos Arroyo and James Jones logging big minutes for your squad. Think they would get any minutes for the Lakers, Celtics or Magic? Probably not. They might not get big minutes for the team you should be playing on… the Cleveland Cavaliers. Remember, the team you promised a championship to. And for the last three years when you didn’t bring them one, they still backed you up. They were the best home court advantage in the NBA in quite some time. One hundred times better than the Miami crowd will be. They absolutely loved you. When people called you Queen James, LeChoke and a quitter they still chanted MVP for you. They still rose to their feet and yelled every time you threw the powder into the air. The Cavaliers held Cleveland together. The Heat are a small part of Miami. LeBron, you meant everything to Cleveland. And whether you want to admit it or not, the Cavaliers are your best chance to win a title. The way you play together with those guys, the fun you have, and the way they look up to you. That all goes down the drain if you go to Miami. What I liked the most about the way you played was how much fun you had. All of that fun will disappear. You are going to be an angry and hurt man. Right now you are asking, “What should I do?” If you go to Miami, you will be soon asking yourself “What did I do?” Stay in Cleveland LeBron. Win a title there, and write your name in history as the best ever.
It’s that simple.

Now that I got the angry stuff out of the way, I want to touch on what has transpired in the NFL in the last two weeks. Two weeks ago I did my first NFL power rankings. Well, keeping with the theme of unpredictability, a lot has changed since then. Pittsburgh was number one back then, and that weekend they got beat by New Orleans. The Jets were two, and they lost to the Packers. New England was three, and they got beat by Cleveland (Hey, smile Cleveland!) The moral of the story is that whatever you expect is going to happen, probably isn’t going to happen. Whatever you think is real, isn’t real. In a way, I’m not too upset with my last power rankings though. I don’t have a good track record picking NFL. I was hoping not to bring this up, but I unfortunately picked the Cowboys to go to the Super Bowl this year (gulp). But I’m asking for a redo. Well, really I’m just giving myself a redo. No one can tell me I can’t, considering this is my column on my blog. Here are my new and hopefully improved NFL playoff picks.

Wildcard Round
3. Indianapolis Colts over 6. Tennessee Titans
5. New England Patriots over 4. Kansas City Chiefs
3. Green Bay Packers over 6. New Orleans Saints
5. Philadelphia Eagles over 4. Crappy NFC West Team with an 8-8 record (Arizona for arguments sake)

Divisional Round
1. Pittsburgh Steelers over 5. New England Patriots
2. New York Jets over 3. Indianapolis Colts
1. Atlanta Falcons over 5. Philadelphia Eagles
2. New York Giants over 3. Green Bay Packers

Conference Championship
1. Pittsburgh Steelers over 2. New York Jets
1. Atlanta Falcons over 2. New York Giants

Super Bowl
Pittsburgh Steelers over Atlanta Falcons

It was my Super Bowl matchup last year. What I forgot to mention last year was I was picking for this year. My bad to everyone I told this to, but didn’t elaborate.
Before I get to my picks, I want to let everyone know what my next week’s topic will be about. Last year before the NCAA tournament, I told quite a few people that whoever won the tournament would be my official favorite college basketball team. Well Duke won, and I rescinded my statement. The same stakes are alive this year. Next week I’m going to cover my Elite Eight choices of teams I would love to be a fan of. Plus I will be making my official NCAA Basketball picks. Until next week, here are my football picks.

College Football
Ole Miss over Tennessee
Kansas State over Missouri
Oklahoma over Texas Tech
Virginia Tech over North Carolina
Baylor over Texas A&M
Alabama over Mississippi State
Florida over South Carolina
Oregon over California
Arizona over USC
Florida State over Clemson

Atlanta over Baltimore (Yeah that’s right, I picked Atlanta)
Detroit over Buffalo
Minnesota over Chicago
New York Jets over Cleveland
Tampa Bay over Carolina
Houston over Jacksonville
Indianapolis over Cincinnati
Tennessee over Miami
Kansas City over Denver
New York Giants over Dallas
Arizona over Seattle
San Francisco over St. Louis
Pittsburgh over New England
Philadelphia over Washington

Current Records
College Football- 44-26 (5-5 last week)
NFL- 63-39 (10-3 last week)
Yahoo! College Football Picks- 105-88 (10-10 last week, 1,614 in the country)

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Week 9 Football Picks

Don’t you just love those Political ads that are on television all of the time, for about two months straight? They are so much fun. All it boils down to is one candidate scum-bagging another candidate just to get ahead, when the reality is, they are all extremely shady. I’ve been gathering some info about the Florida Governor Race, and I came up with this: Alex Sink, Charlie Crist and Rick Scott are all crooks. They are all slimy. They belong in the Political Creep category, just as John Calipari, Billy Gillespie, Jim Zorn and Mike D’Antoni are in the Coaching Creep category. This led to me thinking about what it would be like if every MVP race was debated and settled with such dirty tactics as political races are? That would be so awesome, and so image-mangling at the same time. Just try to imagine this:

Ben Roethlisberger. Not once, but twice has he been accused of sexual assault. If that isn’t bad enough, the girls were only 19 years old. Michael Vick. Does a man who runs a dog fighting ring deserve to win an award that carries so much honor? Probably Not. Peyton Manning is a proven winner. He is a leader and a valuable teammate.
I’m Peyton Manning, and I approve this message.

Or how about this one?

Loyalty. A word that isn’t in the vocabulary of LeBron James. He abandoned his home town, and left them without an NBA title, despite promising year after year it would come. Los Angeles has five titles because of Kobe Bryant. He kept his promise to Los Angeles. Kobe Bryant keeps his promises and wins titles. This message has been paid for by the supporters of Kobe Bryant.
And that would be followed up with this:

Eagle, Colorado. This message has been paid for by Leon Rose, Maverick Carter and William Wesley.
Can you imagine the rivalries that would result because of this? My god it would be amazing. These players would be competing like never before. We also might see a rise in athlete fatalities. I’m not going to take the low road and be a shady like every politician and most high profile coaches are. I’m going to present to you the top three MVP and top three Heisman candidates as of right now. You’re only going to hear the good stuff from the captain.

MVP Award
Peyton Manning- Could we start anywhere else? The Colts offense is like clockwork as long as Peyton Manning is taking the snaps. He makes mediocre receivers into superstars, and has carried the Colts to the playoffs year after year despite not always having a defense or a running game. Anyone who questions that he is the best in the game is crazy.
Stats: 2,184 yards (4th), 15 tds (2nd), 101.4 QB Rating (2nd)

Phil Rivers- San Diego is just 3-5, but it was the same story two years ago when they came storming back to make the playoffs after starting 4-8. It’s not like the AFC West is great. There is a definite chance San Diego can still make the playoffs. If they do, and Rivers keeps up at the pace he is playing at now, he may deserve it. To put into perspective how good he has been, no other quarterback has passed for as many yards in the first eight games of any season as Rivers has this year.
Stats: 2,649 yards (1st), 15 tds (2nd), 98.9 QB Rating (3rd)

Tom Brady- I have to say, I like the Patriots a heck of a lot more without Randy Moss than with him. I think that they are better off going back to “spread the ball around” mode than “let’s throw it deep to Randy” mode. Hell, they won three super bowls without him, and won zero with him (as you can see I am omitting the fact that they went a destructive 16-0 in the regular season). Sure, Brady had his best statistical season ever in the first year of the Moss experiment, but you see how great he really is when he is making Danny Woodhead, Brandon Tate and Rob Gronkowski look like superstars.
Stats: 1,602 yards (15th), 12 tds (6th), 96.6 QB Rating (5th)

Heisman Trophy
Cameron Newton- As of right now, the overwhelming leading candidate. Dare I say, he has a little bit of a Vince Young-esque feel to him? You can never really count Auburn out of any game, even if they are trailing late, just because you feel like Newton isn’t going to lose. Newton has overtaken Denard Robinson as the top duel-threat quarterback in the country, and if Auburn can get past Alabama in Tuscaloosa, he’ll be playing for the title. Along with Newton’s stats, take a look at Vince Young’s stats from the 2005 season where Texas won the national championship. Remember, I was a huge Vince Young at Texas fan, and I still consider him my favorite football player. Young has the upper hand, but I’m just saying the Young/Newton comparison may be valid… if Auburn plays for the championship.
Stats: 1,573 passing yards, 1,122 rushing yards, 29 total touchdowns through 9 games.
Vince Young: 3,036 passing yards, 1,050 rushing yards, 38 total touchdowns.

LaMichael James- The most dynamic player on the most dynamic offense in the country. That counts for something. Oregon is very much the sexy team this year. Their offense is absolutely unstoppable, and that’s what people like. High scoring games, long plays and a different set of uniforms every game. Continuing with the 2005 analogy, LaMichael James would be the Reggie Bush to Cam Newton being Vince Young. Oh wait, Reggie Bush at USC never happened. My bad, I always forget that. Anyways, if Oregon runs the table and James’ productivity stays high, he’s a Heisman threat.
Stats: 1,210 rushing yards, 15 total touchdowns

Kellen Moore- By all means, Kellen Moore is having a great season. Again. His problem, much like his teams problem is he isn’t getting nearly enough credit. Moore has been outstandingly efficient and is once again leading his team to an undefeated regular season. However, his stats aren’t even close to being as good as they were in 2009. In 2009 he had a ridiculous 3,536 passing yards, 39 touchdowns and only 3 interceptions. You take a look at his stats this year, and also look at the way Boise St. has played this year (not much more convincing than last year) and he, much like Boise St. gets lost in the shuffle. In reality, the award should’ve been Moore’s last year. He deserves recognition, but I hope he doesn’t win just because he was slighted last year.
Stats: 1865 passing yards, 18 passing touchdowns, 2 interceptions.

College Football
Oklahoma St. over Baylor
Syracuse over Lousiville
Michigan over Illinois
TCU over Utah
Alabama over LSU
Florida St. over North Carolina
Oregon over Washington
South Carolina over Arkansas
Missouri over Texas Tech
Stanford over Arizona

Atlanta over Tampa Bay
Chicago over Buffalo
New England over Cleveland
New York Jets over Detroit
New Orleans over Carolina
Baltimore over Miami
Houston over San Diego
Minnesota over Arizona
New York Giants over Seattle
Indianapolis over Philadelphia
Oakland over Kansas City
Green Bay over Dallas
Pittsburgh over Cincinnati

Current Records:
College Football- 39-21 (6-4 last week)
NFL- 53-36 (8-5 last week)
Yahoo! College Football Picks- 95-78 (9-10 last week, 2,998th in the country)