We have our first really big weekend of Big XII games. The Big XII North has to be considered wide open so this will be the first weekend where we start to figure out who will contend.
Game of the week - CU (+7) at Missouri 230 ABC - Early money has been pouring in on the Tigers as this opened up at 5.5. Has everyone forgotten the Troy State debacle? I don't think so and despite the recent lack of success for MU against the Buffs I like the alma mater in this one. I traveled to Boulder last year and saw a terribly disappointing loss. However, we have a real opportunity to avenge that this year. An MU team that finished the regular season +14 in turnovers had four costly turnovers against CU (who still finished the year -6 in turnovers) and there was a tough call as to whether Brad Smith scored prior to one of those fumbles. This was still a very competitive game but CU played hard after a tough season up to that point.
This has not been a typical CU killer schedule so this is a somewhat unproven 3-0 team. CU is again playing very hard, winning games and has a lot of confidence but from what I have seen from the Buffs, it appears that the Tigers have better line play and more athletic depth. The backup UNT RB ran for over 200 yards on CU and unless they get the type of turnover margin they got against MU last year or Wazzu this year, MU should be too much for this group. The crowd should be great if a 1-1 MU team can draw 57000+ for Ball State.
Pick MU 31-16
Kansas (+13) at Nebraska - 6PM PPV - Speaking of crowds, the gathering of 37000 that showed up for the Texas Tech game at KU last week (at least for a while before they left) has to be embarassing for KU. Speaking of numbers, KU is 2-10 on the road under Mangino only winning in the hotspots of Tulsa and Laramie Wyoming. I just can;t see how ths team can possibly go into Lincoln and win. In fairness KU has made strides and is athletically better, particularly on defense. This line has also gone up since it opened and I expect this to continue. I would not bet this game but I like KU to cover but I will "bet" it Saturday morning on these picks as I expect the line to go above two TD's.
Pick KU they lose 24-14
ISU +17.5 at OSU - Okie State can't pass the ball consistently and ISU is showing a pulse this year. This line is too high.
Pick ISU they lose 28-21
Baylor +37 at Texas - Baylor's performance against UNT gave me a lot more hope about MU this week. Texas really let me down not blowing out Rice but I think the lack of an option offense will lead to the athletically superior team winning BIG.
Pick Texas 55-3
Texas Tech +27 at OU - 1130 FSN - Great comeback for Tech, but I don't see the athletes here to hang with OU. This will tell us a lot about OU, I think they are that good.
Pick OU 58 - 20
KSU +5 at A&M - 6pm tbs - Another line that has sky rocketed, this one is easy for me, I know KSU is down but I thought they were better than A*M before the year and I still do. Big test for both teams. I will say KSU's excellent kicker makes the difference but they have to throw the ball a bit more.
Pick KSU who wins 23-21
I continue to be impressed with Arkansas +7.5 who I pick to beat Florida.
I again like Arkansas State +17.5 to hang with a bad Ole Miss team.
The game of the week is Purdue (-1) to beat Notre Dame by over 10.
I'll take Miami Ohio (+6) to beat Marshall Wednesday night.
Good luck to your team!