VETTEL'S PICKS: Larry likes UF, Miami, FSU

Well, another mediocre week of picks has come and gone and this time I got burned by four late fourth-quarter scores. Two teams that could have scored but didn't failed to cover. Two others that didn't need more points but kept scoring overcame the points they were laying. And I went from an impressive 9-3 to a depressingly typical 5-7 just like that.

But I did manage to nail the two most significant games on the slate, South Carolina plus points over Tennessee and, of course, Georgia losing to Florida, but covering with the four-and-a-half they were getting.

This week's schedule is a little better than last week's, but the chances of the picks being more accurate are roughly the same as the odds of watching a news story about a Supreme court nominee that doesn't reference Roe v. Wade.

Baylor (plus 28-½) over Texas: The bears are not good and the Longhorns are great. But Baylor is home and Texas tends to take a quarter or two off during most games. Texas 38-14

California (plus 2-½) over Oregon: I remain a Jeff Tedford believer even though this has been a rather uneven season for the Berkley Bears. West Coast games have hurt me all year… yet I keep going back for more. What's that saying about insanity? Cal 30-28

Missouri (plus 12-½) over Colorado: Tigers quarterback Brad Smith has been on a roll and you never know what to expect from a Gary Barnett coached team. The winner is likely to end up getting clobbered by Texas in the Big-12 Title game. Missouri 34-27

South Florida (plus 3-½) over Rutgers: Raise your hand if you thought this game would have BCS ramifications. Liar! South Florida 21-20

Florida State (minus 12-½) over N.C. State: The Wolfpack has had a tough season and there are rumblings about replacing Chuck Amato. The rumblings will grow louder after a spanking from the Noles. FSU 34-13

Kentucky (plus 22-½) over Auburn: The MildKats are coming off an exhilarating win over Mississippi State in which they rang up 13 points. Just guessing Auburn will get bored before too long and start thinking about the game with Georgia next week. Auburn 30-9

Alabama (minus 16-½) over Mississippi State: The Bulldogs are home and they really hate 'Bama. But 'Bama has really good players and MSU doesn't have any. Alabama 20-0

Illinoize (plus 34-½) over Ohio State: The Fightin' Zookers are trying at least. Buckeyes don't score a ton, so here goes. Ohio State 42-10

South Carolina (plus 4-½) over Arkansas: Hogs are turning to a freshman quarterback (Casey Dick) to try and find some sort of passing game. Gamecocks are going to bowl eligibility. Considering the name of the Arkansas QB and the South Carolina mascot, this has been an incredibly difficult thing to write without vulgarity. South Carolina 24-16

Notre Dame (minus 9-½) over Tennessee: Vols began the year in the top five and they will be 3-and-5 is they lose this one. Offensive coordinator Randy Sanders has already been thrown under the bus and more will follow. Charlie Weis continues his drive towards the papacy. Notre Dame 23-10

Miami (plus 6-½) over Virginia Tech: The top special teams school in America meets the best return man in Miami's Devin Hester. Good chance a kicking game play will be the difference. Unseasonably warm weather should help the 'Canes. The winner likely to join the SEC Champ as the best teams left out of the BCS Title game. Miami 20-16

Vanderbilt (minus 19-½) over Florida: The Commodores should make it interesting with a week off to prepare. But they can't like wondering which UF offense will be in play. Jay Cutler keeps it reasonable and the low-scoring Gators can't lay that many points. Florida 27-14


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