Old dude, I am really glad that the Big Ten has expanded to play 9 conference games.
I am, too. You gotta work hard to get those Rutgers games in there!
So cynical. Glad I have youthful innocence on my side! One of the things that is great, is that teams in the old school Big Ten get to play each other more, and there is one less cupcake game, which the SEC likes to pretend does not exist.
Oh, how else is Presbyterian gonna get to visit Tuscaloosa?
They should probably buy a ticket. But my brilliant skills are my ticket. So, even though I don't see a lot of HYYYYYYYPPPPE! this week, it is time to watch me work.
Colorado State Rams (+17) vs. Minnesota Golden Gophers. The Gophers are not playing a conference game this week, since they were on bye last week. The Rams are a team that has been rumored to be a possible expansion candidate for the Big XII. They certainly are a good solid football program, and they would provide you access to the Denver market. Minnesota is a team that is certainly going to be a factor in a wide open West race, considering that they are going to miss at least one of the big boys in the East. This game should be a little scary, but the Gophers should have no problems, right? Gophers 28, CSU 19.
This has trap written all over it. The Gophers need to pay attention to detail here, but I suspect the week off will help them. I think the Gophers will take care of business. Gophers 31, Rams 14.
Beloved Wisconsin Badgers (+4.5) vs. Michigan State Spartans. This game is start of what is the most brutal stretch of games that the Big Ten could have designed for a team at their offices in Chicago. The Badgers have to play at East Lansing, followed by going down the road to Ann Arbor, followed by hosting A School in Columbus. Wisconsin is banged up, and is going to be starting a freshman quarterback in what is going to be a hostile road atmosphere. Thankfully, Sparty did lose a very decorated and successful senior class, and the Badgers did already win a game against LSU that the experts gave them no chance to. I am curious to see if the Badgers are for real, but I am more curious to see if the Spartans are going to be a bit down. Badgers 20, Spartans 0.
So who are the Badgers, anyway? The team that stared down LSU, or the team that struggled to beat Georgia State? I don't like sending a freshman quarterback into East Lansing, so I'm going the other way on this one. Spartans 24, Badgers 17.
Knox College Prairie Fire (NL, despite the fact that some people would bet on it) vs Ripon Red Hawks. Knox College does have a lot of nice students, and we are plenty smart and very talented. The issue is our football program just is not there. Thankfully, this week is a new week, and plus Ripon is never a team that screams powerful team in the Midwest Conference. Knox 19, Ripon 0.
You don't know the history -- Ripon was a feared team for years, but lately you're right. I think this is a close game and we'll give it to the homestanding Red Hawks. Ripon 31, Knox 24.
Minnesota Purple People Eaters (+7.5) vs. Carolina Panthers. This game is unfortunate to be going on during the riots in the Charlotte area. Now, I rarely if ever talk politics, so let's talk football. The Vikings won a very tight game against the Packers, but have suddenly been hit again by the injury bug. Adrian Peterson is going to be out for a few months, and they lost their best offensive linemen. Carolina is a team that has not really broken out much, but you know that Cam Newton is a dangerous playmaker. While Sam Bradford had a very shockingly good performance against the Packers, this time he has a few less buddies in the stands, and the burden is on his shoulders alone. Panthers 45, Vikings 29.
Give the Vikings credit -- they can play defense for sure. I hope Sam Bradford has his insurance paid up, especially with a left tackle who will be on casters. Panthers 31, Vikings 17.
Detroit LOLions (+7.5) vs. Glorious Green Bay Packers. The Packer fanbase is really concerned with how questionable things have been. Thankfully, the Packers have a few things going for them. The LOLions will not have Megatron this time around, and the Packers are going to have a nice run of games in Green Bay, where Aaron Rodgers goes from a very good player to arguably the greatest signal caller in league history. I still believe that the NFC North is going to be up for grabs on Christmas Eve, and the Packers are traditionally slower starters. Packers 50, LOLions 2.
Aaron Rodgers is angry. The Lions won't like Aaron Rodgers when he's angry. Packers 34, Lions 14.
English Premier League. AFC Bournemouth (NL) vs. Everton FC. Since the Bears are a dumpster fire and the Cowgirls are irrelevant again, let's discuss some soccer. My beloved Everton have quietly sneaked into 2nd place in the table, and are unbeaten the league. Bournemouth are a team who should be mid table to relegation fighters, and are well managed under Eddie Howe. The Toffees should dig out a result on one of the longest road trips of the year, since Everton is from Liverpool in the northeast of England, and Bournemouth is on the southern coast. AFC Bournemouth 0-2 Everton, goals scored by Lukaku and Bolasie.
Everton won't stay second, but they are having a nice year. Bournemouth isn't much. So yeah, you're right. The question is whether the Bears could beat Everton. I'm guessing not. I don't know who will score for Everton, but just don't say Lukaku in a Virginia senate race. Bournemouth 1, Everton 3.
I know Gino is going to rage at me for picking soccer ahead of the Bears, but technically I never said I couldn't pick soccer games here. Ben out!