Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Money's Bowl predictions

Bowl season is kicking off this week. I am sure most of you will be entering into office pools, I am in three and my son is in one. There are a lot of things to consider when picking winners here, but I have narrowed it down to a few items to consider when selecting your Money plays:

- Motivation – Does the team want to play in the game or not?
- Coaching – Does the team have a coach? There are nine different teams who are going bowling amid coaching changes. Teams like Houston, West Virginia and Arkansas seem to be hurting the most amongst teams with coaching changes
- Suspensions – Pay close attention to this, especially the night before the game. Already we have 20+ Florida state players suspended, and Clemson will also be without four key players, including LB Nick Watkins. You can bet there will be a few more suspensions from the UCLA team when they party it up in Vegas, although without a coach, I am not sure who will suspend them.
- Leagues – I think when in doubt, you could take every SEC team and do pretty well. Conversely, you should bet against every Big 10 team.

With all of that in mind, I give you:

MONEY’s Holiday betting gifts

NEVADA +3.5 vs. New Mexico
Quote from Lobos player Travis Brown. "In a sense, we felt we should have had a -- for lack of a better word -- a better bowl game," he said. "But we're all happy to be here. We would have loved to have been in San Diego or Las Vegas, but we're here."
Nice. So much for playing in front of the home crowd. Nevada has won four of their last six and seems to be clicking in all phases of their game now. Nevada has a lot of firepower on offense, and New Mexico does not have the defense to slow them down. Nevada will strike quickly and take the crowd out of this game. After that, it could get ugly.

BYU -6 vs. Ucla
This game is the perfect storm. UCLA beat BYU earlier in the year, so the cougars will be out for revenge. Not to mention BYU has been on quite a roll since their loss, and UCLA is going in the other direction. I predict all BYU players will be in bed by 8pm the night before the game, 4 players from UCLA will be thrown in jail and this game will be a blowout.

EAST CAROLINA +10.5 vs. Boise state
What is the first thing you think of when you hear the name Boise state? Well probably the first thing you think of is the blue turf; the next thing you think of is their game last year against Oklahoma. That was probably the best game (without money being wagered on it) that I have ever watched. They were America’s darling, and they still are in the eyes of the public. Bet against this tired team and take East Carolina who will keep this game close.

CENTRAL MICHIGAN +8.5 vs. Purdue
Does Purdue still have a football program? I can’t remember their name coming up once this year. Obviously they won enough games to qualify for a bowl game, but this one really sucks for them. They are playing Central Michigan (again) in Detroit. Who cares? They don’t, but we should. Take the MONEYline in this one too.
One caveat in this game to consider. Central Michigan’s Butch Jones will reportedly get an interview at West Virginia. If he leaves, then the Moneyline bet goes away. I still bet they cover.

AIR FORCE +4 vs. Cal
I have been betting against Cal all season and there is no reason to stop now. This team is a disaster. Their defense sucks, the QB sucks, and their coach is predictable. Air Force has one little white guy (Chad Hall) that catches and scampers the ball all over the field. He will embarrass the Bears and finally put an end to this miserable season. Stop pretending the Bears are a good football team. They really are not.

KENTUCKY -3 vs. Florida state

I already liked this game with Andre Woodson at the helm, but after hearing about 20 guys being suspended, I love it. FSU is a disgrace and will lose this game badly.

MISSOURI – 3.5 vs. Arkansas
This is an usual game because prior to their last game, Mizzou was going to play in the national championship game. But they got their asses handed to them by Oklahoma and are now playing in the Cotton Bowl. Their opponent however is worse off. Houston Nutt(ball) left the team and the younger players are pissed, while the older players understand his departure. This leads to a divided clubhouse and lopsided victory for the Tigers.

FLORIDA -10.5 vs. Michigan
I normally stay away from lines this big, but I can’t resist. This will be the last time we will get to bet against a Michigan team coached by Lloyd Carr. Enjoy.

OKLAHOMA -7.5 vs. West Va
West Va does not have a coach, nor an offensive coordinator. I believe Rich Rodriguez took the water boy with him to Michigan as well. I don’t think they are even practicing now. A case could be made that Oklahoma is the best team in the country. They will flatten this lifeless team.

Of course I have opinions on all the games, but these are my favorites. Let me know what you think, or if you want my opinions on any other games as well.

Merry New Year!


Anonymous Jay Webb said...

great call on BYU. That is Barry Danner's titanium lead pipe lock for the weekend!

4:31 PM  
Blogger Money said...

Apparently we are not the only ones that feel this strongly either. The public is 70% on this game and I don't like that. In fact, some of these plays are heavy public favorites; Okla, Fla, Kentucky. The blind leading the blind. These are games I like to be on the other side of.

That said, Bowls games are all about motivation and some of these teams highlighted have none.

3:44 AM  

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