The Left Coast conference looks to be improved this year with more depth than recent seasons. USC is the obvious favorite to win the conference, but after that it's a crapshoot. BeavaBleeda believes that OSU and UO should finish right in the middle. The scary fact of the matter is that Civil War on Nov. 19 may decide who goes to the Las Vegas Bowl and finishes 6-5. Cal, UCLA, ASU, and WAZZU will battle for a chance to dance in December also. Go ahead and pencil down Arizona, Stanford, and UW as the teams that will fall short of NCAA post-season play. My crystal ball tells me that there will be a logjam of teams from 2nd-7th place in the Pac-10 and as a result major controversy and discussion will follow. It will keep us busy on the message boards and give the bowl committees headaches on what 7-4 or 6-5 team to pick for their party.
Now let's get down to business. Who do you throw down on this week? Do you take the dog, the favorite, the over/under play, or the moneyline action? Well, that's up to you and don't blame me if you lose because it's your money. I'm just here to provide insight.
Tonight it's the University of Phil Knight @ Houston. The Cougars are about an 8.5 underdog, but get to play at home in the heat of Texas. The Zeros will be unleashing a new offense and a new offensive coordinator takes the reigns so there is definitely a reason for UO to be nervous. I foresee a sloppy game with little defense. Houston gets some cheap points late in the game and covers the number. Spewgene 38 Houston 31. Remember Indiana last year?
The Idaho @ Washington State number is looking like about four touchdowns right now. This is basically like a home game for both teams since they are so close to each other. I really doubt the Cougars Cougit on this one. WSU 41 Idaho 17. Please note that my wiseguys always take the Vandals in this game and so do I at +28. Yep, that's two dogs now.
UCLA @ San Diego St. looks to be the lock of the week for many SoCal players. The Bruins have had no trouble with the Aztecs in recent years. This years team is loaded with talent so get your wallet out and get paid on UCLA. Early line had them at -7, now it's up to -9.5 for the Bruins. Get your action in before it hits 10. UCLA 31 SDST 20. Karl keeps his job for one more week.
Air Force vs. Washingon at Safeco Field in Seattle looks to be a coinflip. The Huskies are -3. Don't touch this game with a ten foot pole. Both teams suck! Take the UNDER 51 1/2. Both teams shouldn't score much and Airforce loves to run the ball, which will grind out the clock.
USC @ Hawaii. The line has grown to Trojans -35. Give me a break! SoCal boys will be partying it up on the island and it's the season opener so they will be rusty. No way they win by seven touchdowns! Due to hangovers Hawaii is spared total humiliation and only loses by 30. USC 47 Hawaii 17.
Arizona @ Utah. The Utes are currently at -7.5. Tough game to handicap. I like Utah since they have a good system in place and are in the comforts of their home stadium for the opener. Don't overlook this improved Zona squad though. I would recommend staying away from this game. Smells like it could be trouble. If my grandmother twisted my arm and forced me to lay down action I would take the favorite. Utah 27 Arizona 10.
Temple @ ASU. Who cares! Temple is rattled with injuries and the point spread has moved from 26.5 to 32 points in a matter of days. This game could be downright ugly. I would of taken the SunDevils last week, but now I don't like the huge number. ASU wins big. Pick a score. Personally, I don't touch the game.
Portland State @ Oregon State. The Beavers will take care of business and get the "W." Early on it was believed that we were about a 28 point favorite. This game is what we call OTB (off the board). I hate to admit it but I'm a little nervous about this game. We have everything to lose and nothing to gain. The stadium will be full of orange and it will be a beautiful day as we raise Reser. Wait...who am I kidding? I'm not that nervous. OSU 69 PSU 0. Bottom line is that the score doesn't really matter in this game, we just need to get out of there with a victory.
Boise State @ Georgia. The Bulldogs defense and the heat will set in fast for the Broncos. This game will make or break the Broncs year. Sorry Blueturf boys! Georgia 34 Boise State 24. Georgia is currently -7.5. For a good value you may want to take BSU on the moneyline. Not me though.
Good luck to everyone on their picks!