Last week – 3-2
Overall – 7-12
Pretty solid bounceback week, winning with Washington, Alabama, and Northwestern. I need to start have some big weeks to really claw back to the .500 mark.
Northwestern +7.5 vs Michigan – I actually think the Wolverines are going to win this game, but it will be very competitive. The Wolverine defense is going to get really tested if Dan Persa can stay healthy for the entire game (admittedly a big question mark). Pat Fitzgerald teams usually play well at home, and they have enough offensive talent to stay within a touchdown or so.
This is the first road game of the season for UM, and the hook at 7.5 makes it even more tempting.
Iowa +4.5 at Penn State – If there is a more underwhelming team in the country than Penn State, I haven’t seen it. The Nittany Lions are 4-1, but that record includes very close victories against both Temple and Indiana. They haven’t solved their 2QB dilemma in a year, which tells you they really don’t have a quarterback.
The Hawkeyes are in a transition season with new QB James Vandenberg, but they do have talent at both RB and WR. I think the 4.5 is a touch high; this line seems like it should be more around 2-3 points. What has PSU done to be this type of favorite? Kirk Ferentz will find a way to keep this very close, if not win outright.
Oklahoma -10.5 vs Texas (neutral) – The line is a bit high here, but as I said on Vandermeer and Lopez, I believe there’s a greater chance of a Sooners blowout than a flat-out Longhorns win. I have my doubts about the Texas offense, which ranks in the 70’s in terms of the passing attack. Case McCoy and David Ash have yet to see a defense as good or aggressive as they will on Saturday, and that could pose some real problem.
Again, I’m not thrilled about how high the line is here, but I do believe that Oklahoma is a level above Texas this season.
Notre Dame -14 vs Air Force – Very quietly, the Fighting Irish have started to right the ship a little, picking up victories against Michigan State, Pitt, and Purdue in the last 3 weeks. I’m not a huge believer in Tommy Rees, but he’s started to limit the turnovers a bit.
Most of all, I’m not a buyer in the Falcons, who have been shaky so far this season. They’re 3-1, but barely beat Navy in OT last week, and were handled by a TCU team that I don’t think is any great shakes right now. With ND’s explosive offense and resurgence as a team, I’ll go with Brian Kelly’s club to cover the 2 TD spread.