After two straight weeks below the Mendoza line, we're finally seeing that regression everyone expected out of BH. Meanwhile, Skinny is heating up.
On to this week's picks...
BLATANT HOMERISM--Week 10
(Last week: 2-3; Overall: 30-20)
Maryland (+15) at Michigan State
The Spartans were begging all year to take an L, and they finally got one against Nebraska last week. Maybe that lights a fire under Sparty's ass.
And maybe they keep stumbling towards the finish line. The Terrapins are playing some inspired ball ever since the administration cut human cinder block Randy Edsall loose.
The pick: Maryland can keep this within two scores.
Arkansas (+7.5) at LSU
As good as Alabama looked last week, LSU really got my attention - and not in a good way.
Defensively, the Tigers appear to miss former coordinator John Chavis badly. That, or youth is killing the defensive line. Either way, the Razorbacks saw the Crimson Tide grind down the Bayou Bengals with their power running game. That’s right in Bret Bielema's wheelhouse.
On offense, the Tigers can't throw with much consistency, which makes me question their ability to exploit Arky’s stank pass defense.
The pick: Hogs look live to me.
Oklahoma State at Iowa State (+14)
Some fool's gold in the Cowboys' statement win over Texas Christian. First, TCU has floundered away from Amon Carter Stadium all year. More importantly, the Horned Frogs racked up 200 more yards for the game while OSU feasted on a plus-four edge in turnover margin. Most of that happened with all-world receiver Josh Doctson out of the game, too.
Paul Rhoads' decision to ax offensive coordinator Mark Mangino and insert Joel Lanning at quarterback has given the Cyclones a lift. I suspect they will keep this in striking distance.
The pick: Pokes don't cover.
Alabama at Mississippi State (+8)
Remember last year when Alabama knocked Mississippi St. out of its first ever No. 1 ranking. I had forgotten, too, but It really did happen. The Bulldogs are looking for a little revenge this week.
The Crimson Tide might have the best team in the country, but who’s the best quarterback they’ve seen so far? Chad Kelly, maybe? State has the SEC’s best signal caller in Dak Prescott, who will test Alabama’s ability to stop the pass.
With the Tide coming off an emotional win over LSU, it wouldn’t shock me if ‘Bama comes out a little flat.
The pick: Clanga.
Texas at West Virginia (-9.5)
The Mountaineers took pity on Texas Tech last week, kneeling to end the game deep in Red Raider territory. Not surprisingly, Holgo the Destroyer’s compassion screwed some gamblers – including yours truly – out of a cover.
Like an offensive coordinator going right back to a receiver after a drop, I’m riding WVU again this week.
The ‘Eers got worked by the Longhorns last year, which should give them a little extra motivation for this game. The ‘Horns have played a grand total of three true road games this season. They haven’t even come close to covering the spread in that span.
The pick: Mountaineers 30, Longhorns 17.
THE SKINNY--Week 9
(Last week: 3-2; Overall: 25-24-1)
Alabama at Mississippi St. (+8)
Oklahoma St. at Iowa St. (+14)
Florida at South Carolina (+8)
Memphis (+7) at Houston
Purdue (+16) at Northwestern