Pac-12 Football: Week 11 Predictions

11 11 2010

Another great week of football on the West Coast with an underdog coming out on top, Oregon continuing to be the most fashionable team in the conference, and another dramatic finish for the Trojans.

What was supposed to be the best game of the weekend quickly turned into a snoozefest between Arizona and Stanford. Insider reports are claiming that Jim Harbaugh brought in some sheriffs to ask the Arizona players for their immigration papers. Many of the long-haired Wildcats couldn’t provide their documents which led to some lengthy cavity searches that left the players distraught.

The California Golden Bears actually got away from their cave known as Strawberry Canyon! They only get half-credit since it was Washington State.

The Huskies are playing like they were recently neutered, but they came out and fought hard. If they would have beat the 34 point spread it would have been as good as a victory.

USC Knows Drama – should be the new tagline for TNT this season.Lane Kiffin is quickly turning into our version of LSU’s Les Miles, except not as lucky. For the third time this season the Trojans were facing an opponent kicking the game winning field goal and for the first time, they missed.

No. 1 Oregon at California: Cal’s Brock Mansion has the perfect name for the porn industry, but the big man on the screen will Darron Thomas. Size matters, Ducks roll 41 – 20

Washington State at Oregon State : Oregon State has no room for error with the back end of their schedule including USC, Stanford, and Oregon. Beating Washington State is a must-win if the Beavers plan on heading to a bowl game. Beavers 33 – Cougars 17

USC at No. 18 Arizona: The Wilcats have played well against USC in recent years, but how will they fare after flopping in Palo Alto? If Ricky Elmore and Brooks Reed can pressure Matt Barkley, they should get the win. Pussy Cats 27 – Condoms 24

No. 6 Stanford at Arizona State: This matchup pairs the ugliest coeds in the conference against the licentious ladies of ASU. The Sun Devil defense has the speed and strength to slow down the Stanford offense, but they always find a way to lose the close game. Trees 27 – Demons 23

Utah at Notre Dame: Utah gets its second religious institution in a row, but who’s side will Jesus be on this one? The Utes get saved 30 – 24

Iowa State at Colorado: The Buffs fired their coach Dan Hawkins this week, but I don’t think they’re better for it. Iowa State will take advantage of their opportunity. Cyclones 27 – Buffs 20

2010 Prediction Record 58-16

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Pac-12 Football : Week 8 Predictions

21 10 2010

Washington at Arizona: Every other game is a must win for the Huskies, and since they won last week they will probably come out flat. Zona will spread out Washington and get their players in space to make plays one on one. Wildcats 30 – Huskies 27

UCLA at Oregon: The Bruins pistol offense was firing blanks the last time we saw it, and even if they’re successful in this game they won’t be able to stop the Ducks for a full 60 minutes. This UCLA defense will need to stack the box and rely on their secondary to not give up the big plays through the air. They will be in the game as long as they stop the run, about 1/2 a quarter. Ducks 44 – Baby Bears 17

Washington State at Stanford: The Cardinal are going to cruise in this game, but Harbaugh needs to know when to pull the starters and keep the team fresh heading into the back-end of the season. Trees 47 – Kittens 17

Arizona State at California: Instead of playing to win, Jeff Tedford has the Bears playing not to lose. This Sun Devil defense is good enough to stop the Cal running game and force Riley to throw the ball. If the fighting Tedford’s can’t get their passing game clicking in this one, then they will lose the game. Cal is a great home team though. Bears 31 – Sun Demons 24
Colorado State at Utah: The Utes haven’t been able to force many turnovers this year, but luckily they won’t need them against CSU. Look for the best name in college football (Shaky Smithson) to be the X-factor in this game. Utes 44 – Rams 14
Texas Tech at Colorado: The Buffs were whipped by Missouri’s spread offense and Tubberville has the Red Raiders playing with confidence. This game means a lot more for Dan Hawkins, so I’m expecting them to come out fired up. Buffs 27 – Raiders 24
2010 Prediction Record 45-9

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Pac-12 – Week 4 Predictions

24 09 2010

UCLA at #7Texas 12:30PM: UCLA had a gutsy win last week against #23 Houston and the Bruin secondary is designed to slow down a spread offense like Texas’, but look for Mack Brown to take advantage of his size up front by relying on the ground game. Longhorns 34 – Bruins 17

#20 USC at Washington State 12:00PM: Lane Kiffin is addicted to two point conversions, the Trojans haven’t played a complete game, and they have dropped in the rankings after all three of their victories. This should be the game where they put it all together and finally cover the spread for the first time this season. Trojans 42 – Cougars 20

#16 Stanford at Notre Dame 12:30PM: As we know from The Big Lebowski “Nobody F#cks with The Jesus!” Except maybe Jim Harbaugh and Andrew Luck of Stanford. Notre Dame’s defense will need extra prayer this week if they plan on slowing down the Cardinal offense. Trees 27 – Catholic Kids 23

#5 Oregon at Arizona State 7:30PM: ASU looked good against the big slow white guys from Wisconsin, but the Ducks have as much speed as any team in the country. The main advantage for Oregon is that they get to train with this guy. The side story for this game is the amazing talent at cheerleader that should be on display. Ducks 41 – Sun Devils 17

San Jose State at #13 Utah 7:30PM: The Utes haven’t missed a beat with the reemergence of Terrance Cain at quarterback. San Jose State doesn’t have the athletes to contain DeVonte Christopher and Jereme Brooks. A win here will bring them closer to the top ten. Utes 44 – Spartans 13

#24 Oregon State at #3 Boise State 5:00PM: This looked like a marquee game before the season started, but don’t expect it to be a close one. The Beavers might have a chance if Stephen Paea can disrupt Kellen Moore, but they haven’t been able to get to the quarterback much this year. Boise is balanced offensively and Chris Peterson should exploit the inexperience at linebacker by utilizing the tight end more. Broncos 38 – Beavers 21

Cal at #14 Arizona 7:00PM: The Bears are coming off a disappointing loss and the Wildcats just knocked off a top ten team last week. If Juron Criner doesn’t play look for Arizona to use a shorter passing game. If Cal plays to their potential and Arizona has an emotional letdown, this could be an upset. The Zona Zoo is wild at night and the Bears have struggled in Tuscon. Wildcats 31 – Bears 27 Here’s a great preview of Bears vs Housecats

2010 Prediction Record 28-4

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Pac-12 – Week 3 Players of the Week

21 09 2010

My prediction record took a beating this week with a 9-3 record overall, but the conference’s image received some crushing blows when Cal got pistol whipped by Nevada and Washington got corn-holed at home by Nebraska. Luckily I found this picture of a gorgeous prostitute from Nebraska who exchanges sexual acts for football tickets.

Players of the Week

Despite the embarrassment of Cal’s loss to Nevada, Shane Vereen was a bright spot for the Bears. The Junior running back hadn’t played much in the first two games with Cal having both games in hand by halftime, but Vereen had some moments that reminded fans of another Cal legend – Jahvid Best, with his jukes, broken tackles and great burst. He finished the night with 19 carries for 198 yards and three touchdowns.

Those numbers would normally be good enough to be the top running back of the week, but LaMichael James was a one-upper with his 227 yards on just 14 carries and two touchdowns. We still don’t know if Darron Thomas can throw the ball, but they might not need to if they keep putting up rushing numbers like they have been (564 yards rushing vs Portland State).

The Leader of the Pac MVP this week belongs to Andrew Luck of Stanford. He continues to improve his decision making and shows great touch on his long ball. He went 17 of 23 with 4 touchdowns and also added a 52 yard touchdown run that made Wake Forest look like a pee wee football team. Chris Owusu played in his first game this season and caught 3 passes for 65 yards and 2 TD’s. My only problem with Stanford this week is that their school colors are Cardinal and White, which makes the opposite of their school colors Blue and Black. They should burn the black jerseys, but coach Harbaugh thinks his team looks tough in them.

The Week 3 Juggy Award belongs to Nick Foles of the Arizona Wildcats for his up and down play. He was managing the game efficiently until he threw the ball to Broderick Binns for a pick-six play to tie the game up at 27 all. Foles wasn’t fazed by the error and went right over the top for a 38 yard gain on the next play to put Arizona in position for the go-ahead score. It looks like the Wildcats are finally getting over the hump and getting some national recognition with the #14 ranking in both polls.

Bust of the Week

As I’ve previously documented, I thought that Jake Locker was the third best quarterback in the Pac-12, but Mel Kiper had him pegged as the #1 QB on his draft board since the off-season. While I don’t claim to know as much as Mel, you don’t need a gallon of gel in your hair to see that Locker’s draft stock is falling faster than Mel Gibson’s popularity amongst women’s rights groups. His 4 of 20 for 71 yards and 2INT’s is one of the worst games of the decade and a lot of it was poor decision making by the QB. The Huskies now have to go 5-4 in Pac-10 play to make a bowl game and they have road trips at USC, Oregon, Cal, and Arizona. Locker is the only player to ever receive the Bust of the Week award twice in the same season and it’s only week 3…

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Pac-10 Positive Outlook

30 08 2010

I can’t remember a time when the conference was as wide open as it is this year with seven teams legitimately competing for the championship. Some people have UCLA as a dark horse, but their offensive line has been decimated in the off-season from players leaving for missions, injuries, and now academic ineligibility.

I’m tired of ESPN plugging the SEC as the top conference in the country just because they signed a $2.0 billion deal to cover their games. That conference is always top heavy with a couple teams that can beat anyone, but they also have six bottom feeders that would be average in any BCS conference. I don’t think Florida or Alabama could go undefeated against the top 7 in the Pac-10, but both of them somehow came out of the SEC unscathed until the conference championship. If I was betting on these Pac-10 teams to win the conference championship it would be due to the reasons mentioned below.

Oregon

  • Darron Thomas will be a household name by the end of the year, but not because he’s being mentioned on the police blotter like a former Ducks QB. Oregon fans will tell you about how awesome he was in the spring game and that he’s a more accurate passer than Masoli.  He will also be playing behind a talented offensive line and a stronger LaMichael James. If he’s anything near Dennis Dixon 2.0 then the Ducks could repeat as conference champion.

Cal

  • This team has all of the pieces in place, but the one thing that will make them a contender for the championship is the bump in production that typically happens to Pac-10 quarterbacks. Joey Harrington, Carson Palmer, Kyle Boller, Derek Anderson and Sean Canfield all know what it’s like to trod with mediocrity for three years only to see things slow down like Neo in the Matrix during their senior season. Kevin Riley is capable with the weapons he has at his disposal which could push the Bears over the top.

Oregon State

  • The Beavers have as much firepower as any team in the conference, but this year they will combine that with increased production in the trenches. Last year’s team ranked 8th in the conference in sacks allowed and the defense ranked 9th in sacks. Ryan Katz will have a much smoother transition with a more experienced offensive line and defensively the new linebackers will be looking for Stephen Paea to create gaps for them by taking on double teams.

Arizona

  • This team is replacing their defensive coordinator, both starting defensive tackles and their entire linebacking corps, but their defensive ends (Brooks Reed & Ricky Elmore) will be the best pass-rushing tandem in the conference. Combined with the fact that they have one of the best secondaries in the conference, they’ll have a solid defense to match their powerful offense.

USC

  • There’s been coaching turnover, players transferring, and the distractions of Reggie Bushgate, but USC  still has the talent to contend for the Pac-10 championship. The best USC teams of the decade had monsters on the defensive line that could get to the quarterback with a four man rush which allowed the linebackers and secondary to create turnovers. Jurrell Casey is one of the top defensive tackles in the country and Armond Armstead has shown big upside at defensive end.

Stanford

  • Kirk Hirbstreit already put the dreaded curse on Stanford by predicting that they will win the Pac-10 championship, but Jim Harbaugh wants to know what his deal is for adding pressure to an under the radar Stanford team? They have the best quarterback in the Pac-10, but for them to compete for the Rose Bowl it will be because of their currently underrated stable of running backs Jeremy StewartTyler Gaffney and Stepfan Taylor. The Cardinal offensive line proved that they’re one of the best in the conference, but even moderate production from the ground game will allow Andrew Luck to do whatever he wants through the air.

Washington

  • The Huskies have the most balanced offense in the Pac-10, but if they’re going to compete for the championship it will be due to a scrappy defense that creates turnovers. Nick Holt has seven returning starters which should translate into a better understanding of his schemes. With two all-conference calibur players in cornerback Desmond Trufant and linebacker Mason Foster, I’m anticipating a much more aggressive campaign from the Huskies.

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Fantasy Fútbol

15 06 2010
While watching the England vs USA soccer match yesterday and the lack of action also known as Fútbol, I started thinking about how these guys would fit in with real American sports like football. I saw a couple guys that could make an impact in the Pac-12.

Landon Donovan would have to play quaterback in the league. He chose eHarmony over match.com to find the right team, because he liked their commercials better. The algorithm calculated that he would be a perfect match to get the UCLA revolver offense firing (pun intended). I know what you’re thinking “they don’t even use their hands in soccer, so how’s his arm?” The man has intangibles that make Tim Tebow jealous.  He’s a general on the field and makes all of his teammates better. Despite his receding hairline he’s a descent athlete, and he’ll need every bit of his athleticism with the porous UCLA offensive line. Just like his time on the LA Galaxy, Donovan will play well, but fail to make a post-season bowl game as he threw for 1,800 yards 10TD’s and 8INT’s , 750 yards rushing and 9TD’s.

Another guy that would make an instant impact is Wayne Rooney. Think miniature version of Toby Gerhart on the Furd. He’s quicker than he is fast, and he’s got the attitude to punish would-be tacklers. Coach Harbough keeps telling him to run out of bounds, but he didn’t get on the squad for his wits and continues to meet linebackers head on. The best part is watching the crazy English fans at Stanford games decked out in their soccer flags and scarves. The Stanford band loved their sense of fashion and made them honorary members. Rooney came in and had an amazing freshman year behind a strong passing offense led by Andrew Luck.  He ripped of 1,100 yards rushing with 12 td’s that came in the form of four hat tricks games.

Christiano Ronaldo always wanted to play in the Pac-12 and was considered the top WR prospect in Europe. He contemplated being a part of one of the spread offenses in the conference, but Lane Kiffin made a big splash hauling in Ronaldo as part of his 2011 recruiting class. Lane promised him a bigger house and more money than Reggie Bush and when he saw the SC coeds it was blonde frosting on the cake. Ronaldo and his QB Matt Barkley had trouble getting on the same page with some off-field issues. Barkley was courting the country singer Taylor Swift, but Ronaldo convinced her that he was the more competent lover.  Barkley refused to throw Ronaldo the ball until he stopped dating Swift which didn’t happen until the 4th game of the season. The tenuous relationship between the two was finally repaired by the UCLA game when the duo accounted for 132 yards on 12 receptions  and two TD’s. Ronaldo finshed the year with 37 receptions for 518 yards and 5 TD’s,  one punt return for a TD. [tweetmeme source=”Pac12Conference” only_single=false]