Not too bad last week, so I'm optimistic for this one...
Minnesota @ Ohio State (-16.5)
The Buckeyes and Pryor have been a major storyline this week. (Note to Jim Tressel: when I suggested a down season might help you in the long run, I didn't mean you should try to implode your offense in the process or lose to 1-5 Purdue. Just making that clear.) The Golden Gophers have been up and down this year, but seem to be regressing a bit. They're strong enough to keep this one close, but the Bucks aren't going to be upset two weeks in a row.
The Call: Ohio State wins, but Minnesota covers the spread
The Result: Ohio State 38-7
The Golden Gophers were seemingly solid in the first part of the season, but they've been inept these last few weeks. Pryor should have quited a few critics with that performance, but can he keep the success up?
South Florida @ Pittsburgh (-6.5)
Good matchup between a couple of one-loss teams. The Bulls can't afford to lose, already behind Cincinnati in the BigEast heirarchy. The Panthers now get into the meat of their schedule, finishing with USF, Notre Dame, Cincinnati, and West Virginia. This one's a tough call, but the gut is saying to go with the Bulls.
The Call: South Florida by 3
The Result: Pittsburgh 41-14
Bad gut! Bad, bad gut. That Pitt-Cincy game in the last week of the season has the potential to be huge.
Georgia Tech @ Virginia (+5.5)
I know the Cavs are getting up their mid-season head of steam, going 3-0 the last few weeks against decent ACC competition, but the Yellow Jackets are just too tough this year.
The Call: Georgia Tech by 10
The Result: Georgia Tech 34-9
Arkansas @ Ole Miss (-6.5)
Dude, do you have any idea how pissed the whole state of Arkansas is right now? I don't envy the Rebels being the next opponent after last week...
The Call: Arkansas by 14
The Result: Mississippi 30-17
Of course, I don't really envy Arkansas either.
Maryland @ Duke (-4)
The fact that Duke is actually favored makes this game noteworthy. That and the fact that if the Blue Devils can win this one, they're at 4 wins, and with Virginia, UNC, & Wake Forest upcoming, they just might be able to make it to a bowl game. Let that sink in... Duke. In a bowl game. In reality. Kinda nuts, huh? I don't know if I can believe it myself.
The Call: Maryland by 7
The Result: Duke 17-13
Can the Dookies do it? Will we get the first ever bowl game called by Dickie V?
Penn State @ Michigan (+4.5)
These two are 11-3 combined, but let's compare good wins. The Nittany Lions have... Minnesota? Maybe? The Wolverines have beaten Notre Dame and... that's about it. Games against Akron, Syracuse, Temple, I-AA Eastern Illinois, Western Michigan, Eastern Michigan, and I-AA Delaware state make up half their games. Pathetic. Pathetic and embarrassing.
The Call: Penn State by 7
The Result: Penn State 35-10
Finally a decent win for the Nittany Lions. Winning out is the only way I see them getting to a BCS bowl, and even that might not be enough if Iowa doesn't fall flat.
Oregon (-10) @ Washington
The Huskies are on a roller-coaster this year, beating USC, losing last second to Arizona State... The Ducks have been lights out since their first week loss to Boise State. Will they be caught looking ahead to USC next week? I don't think so, but Locker could make it close.
The Call: Oregon wins, but Washington covers the spread
The Result: Oregon 43-19
So next week's matchup of the Trojans & Ducks looks to be for the Pac10.
Tennessee @ Alabama (-14.5)
The Vols had one big matchup against the top of the SEC this year, and they played not to get blown out. Will they do the same thing here? For some reason, I don't think so. Kiffin's group is starting to get their feet under them and are doing a respectable job lately. But respectable isn't enough against the Tide. If they pull out all the stops and make this a hell of a crazy game, maybe. But once again, it comes down to Saban's boys being able to control the game.
The Call: Alabama by 17
The Result: Alabama 12-10
Hmmm... I know Bama has rolled up until now, but their offense just seems to be in a rut right now. That game definitely exposed some holes in their armor, and the rest of the SEC West just might be able to expose them more. Another moral victory for the Vols...
Louisville @ Cincinnati (-17.5)
The Bearcats are looking good in a BigEast that's not getting nearly the respect it deserves this year. They know they need to win pretty, and they've been holding up their end of the bargain with big wins. But every team usually struggles at least once per year. Louisville is 2-5, but they've played some really good teams so far. Do I have the balls to call for the straight upset? Aw hell, why not.
The Call: Louisville by 4
The Result: Cincinnati 41-10
Note to self - having balls doesn't not necessarily correspond with having brains.
Washington State @ California (-35.5)
What am I supposed to do with that spread, honestly? Yes, we know that the Cougars are terrible. That's a given. But what to do about Cal? They bounced back from two really bad losses by trouncing UCLA last week, and with Oregon and USC out of the way, a 9-3 or even 10-2 season is still realistic. I think they start the second half of the season on the right foot.
The Call: California by 38
The Result: California 49-17
Ah, close. My pick, not the game. Of course.
Texas A&M @ Texas Tech (-21.5)
Psst - let me let you in on a little secret I'll expound upon next week: the Red Raiders are really underrated, and the Aggies, as bad as they are, seem slightly overrated.
The Call: Texas Tech by 28
The Result: Texas A&M 52-30
Hmmm... not sure what to do with that one. I have been known to be wrong.
Iowa (+1.5) @ Michigan State
Am I missing something here?
The Call: Iowa by 10
The Result: Iowa 15-13
Apparently I am. But I'm still hanging in there, as are the Hawkeyes.
TCU @ BYU (+2.5)
The Horned Frogs D is superb, while the Cougars have started to give up some points to iffy teams.
The Call: TCU by 14
The Result: TCU 38-7
Pure dominance. Things are not looking good for Boise State.
Auburn @ LSU (-7.5)
It seems that teams have found a way to slow down Auburn's potent offensive attack - the loss to Kentucky was just sad. And the LSU D has had two weeks to prepare for them. I can't see Auburn scoring too much here. But the key is going to be LSU's offense, or what passes for their offense. They're gonna need some major help from the D to cover the spread...
The Call: LSU by 10
The Result: LSU 31-10
There's that offense we've been looking for, LSU. Auburn is in a world of hurt right now.