The final thoughts, a few predictions, and some investment advice to make your life a heck of a lot better than it currently is for Rivalry Week.
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Rivalry Week Final Thoughts & Investment Advice: Saturday
Well that wasn’t fun.
There wasn’t any joy in picking Ole Miss to at least cover – not with what happened to Nick Fitzgerald.
And then came the Pitt win over Miami, and late November college football went all late November college football.
That might not be a sign of things to come, but the College Football Playoff picture is never boring.
For all the Saturday games, this is all just for spits, giggles, and entertainment purposes only. However, just in case you dabble …
Purdue fans finally have something to be cranked up about. With a bowl game on the line for both the Boilermakers and Indiana, don’t bother with the 2.5 point spread – obviously. Just go with the winner, but Purdue will just barely cover this at home. | Purdue vs. Indiana Preview
Michigan State has nothing massive to play for against Rutgers, but that won’t matter. The Scarlet Knight style plays right into the Spartan hands. It’ll take a bit for MSU to pull away, but it’ll happen. | MSU vs. Rutgers Preview
The 5.5 Cincinnati is giving away to UConn seems a wee bit much. Neither team has a defense, but the Bearcats can’t push the ball down the field quite like the Huskies can when things are working. It’s just a strange enough line to consider UConn. Not dive in; consider. | UC vs. UConn Preview
Neither team will be right at quarterback, but don’t let that stop you from liking the not-that-bad over on the 58 total between Boston College and Syracuse. Just stay away from the line, though. BC is better, but SU is at home. | BC vs. SU Preview
If you’ve seen one Wake Forest game over the last few weeks, you know exactly what to do with the minuscule 58 point total against Duke. This is a prideful Blue Devil team, though, that should keep it closer than the 11.5. | Duke vs. WF Preview
Appalachian State hasn’t played all that well, but is Georgia State really ready to win a game like this to stay in the Sun Belt title chase? No, but ASU just isn’t good enough to jump in on the 7 on the road.
I despise picking teams just because of the rivalry aspect – if you’re good, you’re good – but North Carolina getting 16 vs. NC State, when the offense has finally figured it out, might be tasty. | UNC vs. NC State Preview
Really? Vanderbilt vs. Tennessee? And death is not an option, fine. Tennessee at home only giving away one. Whatever. | Vandy vs. Tenn Preview
It’s probably right since Kentucky doesn’t have an offense, but Louisville shouldn’t be giving away 10 points on the road to a KFC, much less UK in a rivalry battle. Even if this is wrong, it’s the fundamentally correct call. | UK vs. UofL Preview
Oh, and by the way … a 68 point total? With Lamar Jackson in his final regular season college game? And with this Cardinal D? You’re about to pay for all that crap your significant other just spent Friday buying.
It feels like both teams have peaked. If Kansas State needed this to go bowling, I’d go with the Wildcats at home, but last week vs. Oklahoma State might have been a high point. Iowa State’s defense will keep the score down. | KSU vs. ISU Preview
One caveat on Ohio State vs. Michigan. if whatever the hell that was against Iowa gets off the bus in Ann Arbor, forget all of this. However, John O’Korn isn’t going to beat Ohio State. The Michigan offense will get funky for about a quarter, and then reality will set in really, really hard.
The Buckeyes. Easily. EASILY. No, really. That 12 is nothing if Ohio State plays like it’s supposed to. The Iowa game is the only reason this thing isn’t 20. | OSU vs. Michigan Preview
Before this week, I just assumed I’d be picking Georgia Tech to at least cover against Georgia. But these linebackers, this defensive front, and this team that’s still fighting for the national championship is really that good. It’ll hit the curveball. | UGA vs. GT Preview
Can Maryland actually score? There’s a chance the Terp D rises up and does something special against Penn State, but the Nittany Lions are pushing for something here. They want national respect, and they want a New Year’s Six bowl game. The 22 is a lot, but again, Maryland will struggle on O. | PSU vs. MD Preview
I can not believe I’m about to do this again. Every week, I keep thinking Lucy won’t pull the ball away on Illinois ATS, and every week I end up flat on my back. Northwestern will win easily, but it might be low scoring. That 16.5 is a lot for a Wildcat team that likes close games. | NW vs. Illinois Preview
This is when it gets scary. Does North Texas care? It’s playing in the Conference USA title game next week, and it doesn’t need the win over Rice. But the Owls are SO bad … the 11 isn’t too far off. But buyer beware – the Mean Green might play the waterboys to keep the starters right for FAU. | UNT vs. Rice Preview
This is when it gets scary, Part 2. I’ll admit that I’ll get one of these right, and the other wrong. I’ll go with the North Texas pick giving the points, but as bad as Charlotte is, it’ll come up with a wee bit of O to cover the massive 22 point spread vs. FAU. | FAU vs. Charlotte Preview
Utah State isn’t all that great at stopping the run. Air Force is playing at home in its final game of the season. Need I go on? | USU vs. AF Preview
Didn’t like Marshall -5 when it opened, like the -3 where it’s at. The Herd offense might be spotty, but take the team playing its home finale. | MU vs. USM Preview
UNLV has everything on the line. All the sins of a weird season get wiped away with one win over Nevada for the Fremont Cannon. One win, and the Rebels are going bowling. You’re not wrong for thinking Nevada wins at home, but it can’t stop the run, and UNLV just destroyed New Mexico on the ground. | UNLV vs. Nevada Preview
The Apple Cup line is among the most mystifying of the season. Wazzu is probably winning this straight up after getting two weeks off – and it’s getting 10.5?! The line has gone up from nine over the last few days? Great. Thanks. Much appreciated. Hugs and kisses. | UW vs. Wazzu Preview
Don’t ever go against anyone getting the fun of playing San Jose State. But this is an offensively-challenged Wyoming team with a great defense on the road against an SJSU team in its final game. The 20 seems like a LOT in a game that might not see a whole slew of points. | UW vs. SJSU Preview
It’s a fight for a bowl game. Win, go bowling. Lose, life sucks, no swag bad, and the bandies are ticked that there’s no free trip. Colorado will play its tail off … and lose at Utah. The 10.5 is a bit moist. | Buffs vs. Utes Preview
ULM has a fun offense that puts up big points from time to time. Arkansas State might be gunning for a Sun Belt title – or a piece of it – but the Warhawks can ball. This will be a firefight, but giving a team with this O 8 in its home finale is scary.
Ehhhhhhhh, not happy about giving away 11.5 to an Old Dominion team in need of a win to go bowling, but Middle Tennessee needs the W, too. At home, with a better offense, the Blue Raiders pull it off. Again, not happy about this pick. | MTSU vs. ODU Preview
The Paul Bunyan Axe comes down to turnovers. As long as Wisconsin isn’t a -4, Minnesota shouldn’t have any sort of a shot. There’s no Gopher passing game, the Badger run defense is humming, and this should be a wipeout … as long as Alex Hornibrook isn’t screwing up. | UW vs. UM Preview
Admittedly, it’s not the right analysis, but if Notre Dame really needed this for the CFP, Stanford would be the pick. The Irish are shooting for a New Year’s Six bowl, the Cardinal will be spending their day dealing with watching the Apple Cup – Stanford goes to the Pac-12 title if Washington beats Washington State – and the better team will win as long as it doesn’t come out throwing. | ND vs. Stanford Preview
Clemson might not cover the 13.5, but that doesn’t mean it won’t dominate. The Tigers will have to dive down deep into the muck of Gamecock football, but the talent will win out. USC has the ability to come up with a “close, but not quite …” performance. | USC vs. Clemson Preview
Was all over LSU -10 before the Kevin Sumlin thing, now liking the Aggies to rise up and rally in a ticked off sort of way … and lose. LSU has to fight, but it gets the win at home. And next year, it faces A&M head man Jimbo Fisher. | A&M vs. LSU Preview
How much do both teams care/want to show considering they’re facing each other for all the Mountain West marbles next week? Fresno State and Boise State will likely keep it relatively simple in a low-scoring game – the 48.5 might be way high – with the Bulldogs keeping it close. | FSU vs. BSU Preview
SMU is the better team than Tulane, and it’s at home. SMU also stinks against the run, and Tulane needs this to go bowling. Green Wave +8 – you’ll be fine. | SMU vs. Tulane Preview
Sticking with the theory that anything over 40 is silly – it’s still possible to win in a blowout and not cover that monster number – but Oklahoma State -41 vs. Kansas seems appealing. Like a free throw, do the same thing every time, don’t alter the routine or belief system. As much as it might smell, hold your nose and go Jayhawks +41. | Kansas vs. OSU Preview
Way too high on Arizona ever since Khalil Tate took over, I’m not wavering now. Go over the 74, go Arizona -2, go enjoy the afternoon game in Tempe. | UA vs. ASU Preview
Ooooooooh, Baker Mayfield isn’t starting. Oooooooooh. Whatever. He’ll hit 22-of-24 passes when he takes over, but even without Will Grier, the West Virginia offense will do just enough on the porous Sooner D to keep it from getting disgusting. | OU vs. WVU Preview
I want to believe that Oregon State will put up a fight in the Civil War fight vs. Oregon, but the Ducks will get rolling early. The Beavers, though, will rise up and make this a wee bit more interesting late than Oregon fans might like. | OSU vs. UO Preview
“Why am I such a misfit? I am not just a nit wit! They can’t fire me. I QUIT!” It’s the Island of Misfit FBS Teams when New Mexico State hosts Idaho. The line has shot up to ten after starting out at 7.5, but it doesn’t matter. Even with Aggie QB Tyler Rogers a bit iffy, NMSU will roll at home. | NMSU vs. Idaho Preview
At the end of the day, it’s still a Georgia Southern team with one win, and Louisiana is still fighting for bowl eligiblity – needing to win this week and next week. ULL can’t stop the run – that’s a problem against the Eagles – but at home, it’ll keep the 13th game dream alive. | ULL vs. GSU Preview
Overloving the idea of teams playing at home in the final game of the season – hello, Pitt – watch out for Tulsa to rise up against Temple. The line is going up a wee bit for Temple, but the Golden Hurricane O will come through late. | Tulsa vs. Temple Preview
UTSA can’t score, Louisiana Tech needs a win to go bowling, Louisiana Tech is at home, UTSA is already bowl eligible. The Roadrunner D is terrific, but like the Bulldogs -1.5, love the under on the 50.5. | LT vs. UTSA Preview
Memphis is already in the AAC title game, but it’s still pushing to be a part of the New Year’s Six fun. East Carolina is so, so bad against anyone with a passing offense, and the Tigers aren’t going to take it easy. However, ECU’s offense should do its part in the run to hit 79 points. | MU vs. ECU Preview
Yes, UAB is far better than UTEP, but 21 points better? Maybe, but UTEP will score 14 points. Now it’s up to you to figure out whether or not UAB can get to 35. | UAB vs. UTEP Preview
Everything in me says Auburn. Call it the leftover turkey that I didn’t want in the first place, the fourth Venti drink of the day, woman’s intuition, whatever – Auburn, Auburn, Auburn.
Alabama just isn’t that great. It’s defense is its typical amazing self, and the offense does what it needs to, but the Tigers are on a roll, playing with confidence, playing with a defense, playing at home …
Auburn, Auburn, Auburn.
I can’t do it. It’s not in my DNA to pick against the Crimson Tide in a big game.
It’ll be a close, low scoring game, with the Tide defensive front taking over and field position becoming a massive deal. | Auburn vs. Alabama Preview
UCF vs. USF was bigger, Florida is going to miss out on the coach it really wants (Chip Kelly), FSU is going to lose its coach to Texas A&M, the Gators aren’t going bowling, and the Noles needed to reschedule a layup game against ULM just to be in the bowl picture.
And yet, Florida State vs. Florida is always worth the watch. This will be a battle with both teams fighting it out – including the dead-in-the-water Gators. | FSU vs. UF Preview
And Finally …
BYU vs. Hawaii should just be branded as The Other Hawaii Bowl. It’s the end of the line for both disappointing teams, but in an alternate universe, this could be played in late December and be just as good as any swag bag bowl. BYU is the favorite, but Hawaii is at home, so … enjoy your late night chaser. | BYU vs. Hawaii Preview