October, will you marry me?
It’s the time of year I love more than any other and I don’t want to fathom life without it.
For a lot of sports bettors, this is the time when you spend your late afternoons ignoring your work and monitoring the ‘live scores’ major league baseball tickers in the window you keep hidden from your boss.
Your nights? Spent huddled on the couch watching fast balls that seem suddenly soaked in magic and home runs that drip with agony.
For us college football degenerates, that’s just the stuff you watch during commercials.
Weekday college football is back, which means we have about two more excuses to crack a beer each week, or about two more than I need.
And though it is one of the most glorious things a man can ask for, there’s still something that feels a little dirty about it. Like you’re doing something you’re not supposed to.
I kept finding I had the urge on Tuesday to look back every few minutes to the Direct TV guide to make sure I wasn’t watching a rerun of some Saturday game. Each time I reaffirmed that I was indeed watching live C-ball, I got a little more giddy.
It was almost enough to make me forget that I went 1-4 against the number with my picks last week. I watched my record slip to 9-7-1after a start so tight, it was making Jessica Alba jealous.
But before we get back on the winning track with Saturday’s picks, let’s take a look at how my week has gone so far.
“What was that?”
“What was what, honey?”
“Did you just crack a beer? On a Tuesday?”
“Well, yeah, I guess so. But look - there’s college football on TV.”
“Oh my God, you’re problem is worse than I thought.”
“With the drinking?”
“No, with college football. You’re watching Florida Atlantic play Middle Tennessee. You need help.”
Blue turf. Trick plays. Must be Boise State night.
The next morning, co-workers will discuss how amazing blue turf is and wonder why there aren’t more stadiums with alternative-colored fields.
You would never hear this conversation on a Sunday. Nobody outside of Idaho is watching a Boise State game on a Saturday.
OK, breathe. Breeeeathe. You’re going to be alright.
Three college football games in one week night. Two teams ranked in the top 15. Wife goes away on business.
This is serious pleasure overload. If I order in and crack a beer, I think my head might explode.
And have you ever seen a more generous line than Oregon State +11 ½ at Utah?
Life is good.
Yaaaay, Utah State!
Only one more sleep to Saturday.
On to this week’s picks:
Navy vs. Air Force (-4 ½, 53)
While we’re talking of weeknight college football and things we’re thankful for, let’s not forget about these guys.
I’ve watched games of both these teams this year and they look pretty evenly matched. Normally in a situation like this, I’d take the dog, but there are some reasons I’m going the other way here.
Air Force is coming off a bye, while Navy is coming off an emotional win over Wake last week. Navy has won the last five meetings straight up and you know the fly boys aren’t exactly on Cloud 9 about that. And this one is on Air Force’s home turf. Cross-country travel can be tough on the armed forces schools with their grueling daily regiments.
Pick: Air Force
South Carolina vs. Ole Miss (+2 ½, 44)
I have been a believer of Ole Miss this season and I took the Rebs (successfully) in an earlier column. So I was kind of hoping they’d see a small spread this week against the Cocks and that it’d be a swell play to take.
Then I picked up this week’s Sports Illustrated and there looking back at me was Ole Miss defensive end Greg Hardy doing his best Superman impression as he takes down Tim Tebow.
There goes that idea.
Pick: South Carolina
Texas vs. Colorado (+13, 56)
This is about as quietly as you’ll ever see Texas go 4-0. Jump on this money train before the coal runs out.
Auburn vs. Vanderbilt (+4, 37)
There is a reason why sharps hammered this line when it opened at +6 and quickly moved it to +4. Vandy is good, in case you didn’t read Week 3 of Four-play.
Auburn is coming off a pair of dogfights against Tennessee and LSU the past two weeks and the Tigers were probably hoping for an easy week when the season schedule was released.
They’re not going to get it.
Two things will happen this week: 1. Auburn will find out how hard this Vandy team plays and 2. The rest of college football will finally believe the Dores are for real.