Thursday, October 11, 2007

Fearless Dilettante Football Predictions - New Original Edition

Here we go!

Xavier 34, Omro 17 - this is one of Xavier's new traditional rivalries, now that they have joined a new conference. For the uninitiated, Omro is one of several non-descript towns west of Oshkosh. It's hard to get much animosity going against a something that's non-descript. So the Hawks will simply have to settle for thrashing the unfamiliar on Rocky Bleier Night.

ACTUAL RESULT - XAVIER 51, OMRO 7 -- Rocky is proud of his Hawks; no doubt about it. Rumor has it that next time Omro shows up it will be Greta Van Sustern Day, in honor of a significantly more dubious famous alumnus of XHS.

Illinois College 27, Beloit 14 - My beloved, bedraggled Bucs hit the road for a tussle against the comically named Blueboys of Illinois College. The nickname stems from the Civil War, not from the propensity of IC students to get tangled up in cellophane. In any event, the feeble Bucs lose again, someplace in downstate Illinois. That seems to be a recurring theme for Wisconsin-based squads this year, unfortunately.

ACTUAL RESULT: IC 28, BELOIT 14. Guess the Blueboys made the extra point.

Wisconsin 24, Penn State 17 - The news reports today indicate that ancient Penn State coach Joe Paterno was involved in some sort of road rage incident recently. Give JoePa credit - guys his age usually only get angry by sitting on their porch and shouting "you punks get off my lawn" at passersby. I have no rational reason for picking the Badgers in this game. That's why they'll pull it off, likely late.

ACTUAL RESULT: PSU 38, BUCKY 7. The Badgers haven't been back to the Sun Bowl for a while; guess this will be the year.

Green Bay 31, Washington 21 - When I was growing up in Wisconsin in the 1970s, most kids I knew had a "second team" - that is, an NFL team you could root for besides the Packers, who were usually road kill with Chuck Foreman's tire treads affixed back in those days. My second team was always the Redskins, who were generally successful, and who were the sworn enemy of the evil Dallas Cowboys. Even today, decades on, I still have a soft spot in my heart for the Redskins; when the Packers play the Redskins I'm a bit torn about it. Don't get me wrong - the Packers will win this game. But the Redskins are still dangerous with Joe Gibbs at the helm, despite the odious Daniel Snyder in their owner's box. Favre throws at least 3 TDs.

ACTUAL RESULT - GREEN BAY 17, WASHINGTON 14 - Looks like Favre had a bad day but the Packers won anyway. That's actually an encouraging sign. I'm not clear whether or not the Redskins are a good team. In fact, I'm not sure the Packers are, either. But in the NFC, both are probably going to be in the playoffs, so this one was important. Now comes a bye week. Meanwhile, Adrian Peterson looks like the real deal. Will he be Eric Dickerson or Billy Sims? That's the question.

Bonus local picks:

Mounds View 41, Forest Lake 14 - Forest Lake tends to be an up and down team. This year, they're down. Should be no sweat for the Mustangs.


Irondale 24, Fridley 14 - I've learned my lesson; no picking against the Knights as they continue their magical campaign against a good Fridley squad.

ACTUAL RESULT: IRONDALE 39, FRIDLEY 6. In a season of impressive victories, probably the most impressive yet. Fridley came into this game 5-1 and came out with the worst loss they've suffered in a while. The Knights have a legitimate shot of getting the top playoff seed in their section. And on merit, too.


Anonymous said...

Redskin Rama starring Manny Sistrunk on the NFL Network right now.

Mark said...

I like Redskin Rama better when Myron Pottios is on, but Manny is pretty entertaining. Don't forget the cameo appearance by Richie Pettibon, too.

Anonymous said...

Pat Fischer might stop by as well.

Badger are pitiful. Ain't that a shame. :)

Mark said...

Hey now, we love those Badgers around here. If you live in the belly of the beast, I can see where you might feel differently, good sir, but like many things, the Badgers look better from a distance. Especially when I live about 8 miles from the site of the most disastrous football team in the Big Ten, bar none.

mjh said...

Yeah, well Barry Alvarez had to have a 1-10 campaign in 1990 with a home loss to Temple (the first Badger game I attended) before he built that program into what it is today. If this season is the price of admission for future success at Minnesota, so be it. I just hope success is something more than it was under Glen Mason. I really don't want to miss him.

Wisconsin will be alright. They'll beat NIU this week, and they will be bowl-eligible. But, it's probably good that they were exposed in the past two weeks. They damn near lost to The Citadel. If they almost lose to The Citadel, that tells you that there are big problems. But, being #5 indicates otherwise. Being #31 will let you know that you are not a great team.

As for the Packers, getting that win against Washington was payback for the Chicago loss. They had the Redskins game given to them, just as the Pack gave the game away last week. Things do tend to even out over time. However, it's all academic. Barring a miracle, no one is beating New England.

One other thing here, do you really think Ironjail is going to get a #1 seed? I mean, they do have a good record, but they are not in one of the Glamour 4 conferences (Suburban East, NW Suburban, Lake, Classic Lake), so it makes me think they may still get the shaft.

Mark said...

I'm not certain Irondale will get the #1 seed, but I think the other choice would be Mounds View. I believe Mounds View gets Cretin next, so that very likely means they'll go in with two losses. If Irondale beats Chisago Lakes (a good bet, especially at home) then I think they get the nod. The other teams that I know are in the section (White Bear, Roseville, Centennial and Cooper) aren't as well regarded.

Anonymous said...

What about White Bear Lake (Go Bears) and The Pizza School (Totino-Grace)?

Speculating on Minnesota Football is almost as much fun as "speculating on Minnesota Gopher Football." Will Punky Brewster build them in to a real program with his spread offense, or will he simply rack up a lot of yards, beat the occaisional Northwestern in a shootout that exceeds point totals of the Minnesota Basketball team, and drop games to IAA and MAC schools to lower the overall status of the Big Ten? Stay tuned....the bet here is that old Punky will set the program back light years by going with a gimmic offense that can rack up points, but leads to the recruiting of athletes who lack the size to really compete with the upper echelon of the big ten. You can "Spread the Misery" or ride the "Veer to Victory." In the end, the song remains the same.

Mark said...

Hey anonymous,

This is a Minnesota-based blog - you do have to assume it will have at least some Minnesota content, even if the treatment is similar to the "Great White North" skits on the old SCTV show.

As for White Bear (Go Bears), they are a little down this year - lost to Mounds View, one of our local faves, while Totino (the Pizza school) lost to Irondale, our other spotlight high school. Still, Totino has a chance to win it all in 4A if they can get past Spring Lake Park.

As for the Gophers - you may be right. So far, the Brewster regime is bearing a strong resemblance to the days of Jim Wacker, who lost a lot of games 51-35 during his days here. The kid quarterback (Adam Weber) is going to be good, though - just watch.