DISCLAIMER: This game is for entertainment purposes only. No actual wagering is being performed.
And here we go. Here are everyone's picks for the first week of the Protect Your Unit game, in alphabetical order.
Starting us off is Andrew from The UConn Blog:
Let's start out with a little haze-the-future-new-guy parlay. For $100 I'll take Akron +24 and Michigan St. -7
Let me put $50 on Navy and ND UNDER 55
A c'ya around special parlaying $50 on West Virginia -25 over Marshall with the same game going OVER 65.
And a screw-you parlay of $50 on Northwestern -2 while taking the same game to go UNDER 53.5.
$250 bet and one thing's clear: I'm gonna be fake rich.
It's fun not getting around to this post until Saturday afternoon, it makes us all look so stupid.
Well, maybe not all of us, because here are my picks.
$50 - South Carolina/Vanderbilt UNDER 45, because Vegas obviously didn't pay attention to any of the completely unwatchable, low-scoring Thursday night season openers Sakerlina has subjected us to in recent years.
$25 parlay - UCF -24 vs. Akron and Penn State -6 vs. Ohio, because righteous anger is a great motivator. For about three weeks.
$15 on Ohio money line (+$190), because I might be wrong.
$75 on Miami -2 vs. Boston College, because I like free money.
$50 on Louisville -14 or whatever it is vs. Kentucky, because Bobby Petrino would have wanted it that way.
**DEGENERATE SPECIAL** #187 $22 Texas St. +36.5
My ladyfriend is a Bobcat alum, her sister's currently a sophomore there and I've adopted them as my secondary rooting interest. Their first game as an FBS school will be a blowout, but I don't think they'll lose to Houston by more than 5 TDs.
#147 $44 Minnesota -8.5
I witnessed several recent UNLV games in person and am heavily biased against that program beating a single digit FBS line for the next 5 years or so. After seeing RAS (respected gambling service) picked Minnesota as one of their plays this week, that helps remove any personal responsibility if UNLV somehow covers. GAMBLING PSYCHOLOGY.
#143 $44 UCLA - Rice OVER 59.5
#162 $22 Penn State -6
Picking Ohio to pull the upset has become pretty trendy. Always be weary of trends. The Bobcats have a fine football team, but Penn State is one of this week's most to lose teams and their players will have a chip on their shoulder at home. I see a comfy 17-20 point PSU win.
#190 $30 Auburn ML (+145)
I obviously like Auburn to beat Clemson outright with their ESS SEE CEE speed. It's smarter to take the 3.5 points with this small of a bet but whatever, this is fake money and relative to the 25% rule, it's not a complete clowngamble. Ok, it's pretty stupid.
#205 $30 FIU ML (+135)
Though T.Y. Hilton & Wesley Carroll are both gone, Cristobal is too good of a coach to lose to Duke, right? Another "take the points, stupid" game, but these money line bets are mostly about ego and making me look smart when these teams win outright. Don't judge me.
#211 $11 Kentucky-Louisville UNDER (42 points)
This is my mandatory conference game pick. I hate betting for/against my own team, especially rivalry games, so I'll go the safe route with the total. This one smells like a 17-6 type game.
$25 PARLAY: #154 Michigan St. -7; #179 Colorado -6.5; #170 Iowa State +2
$22 PARLY: #177 Iowa -10; #157 Notre Dame -15.5; #156 Stanford -25.5
I try to avoid parlays in real life but in a 25% capped league, parlays will probably decide the winner.
Some more picks after the jump.
Another new contestant is John Lamb, who runs a Temple blog cleverly named Owlsblog:
I'm just gonna send in the picks straight up.
- $50 on UMass (+22.5) beating the spread against UConn.
- $50 on Miami (-2) covering against BC
- $100 on PSU (-6) to cover against Ohio.
I promise I'll (attempt to) bring the funny next week.
Our other UConn Blog competitor, Kevin Meacham:
$100 PARLAY Northwestern (-2) over Syracuse AND Northwestern and Syracuse OVER 53.5
$50 Oklahoma (-30.5) over UTEP
$50 Ohio (+190) over Penn State
$50 The U (-2) over BC
On to our only non Big East competitor (for now), WVUIE97 from The Smoking Musket, who we grandfathered into the game.
$50 on Iowa St
$50 on the over 46.5 Boise St/Michigan St
$50 on Georgia Tech
We also invited our friends at The Bull Rush to join the game this year, so here are Mike's picks, along with some hot speechifying:
Week one. It's finally arrived. The time of year where we make outrageous upset predictions because hey, anything can happen. Or maybe that's just me. Well, my picks for the week are based on absolutely no grounds other than the fact that some teams have new coaches and could be headed for a quick turnaround. With that said, I picked against UCF because #FUCKUCF but also because I do think that Terry Bowden can kick Akron in the right direction with a decent season. I don't even think they'll win their season opener, but I'm having a little faith in the Bowden family and picking Akron to cover a 24 point spread at home against a below-average UCF team. Honestly, I won't know whether I won or lost this game until next week when the PYU results are up because I'm pretty sure this game will have exactly zero viewers. If MACtion happens and no one is there to see it, do I still get my money? Keeping with the new coach theme, I think Mike Leach and Washington State actually have a chance to win their first game together against a BYU team that's on its way down in my opinion. Although I will never fully understand the boner that the whole college football twitter family have for Leach, I think he's a better coach than Bronco and he can make people care about WSU again.
This is a pretty tough week to be forced to pick a Big East game. Not because they're all good games, but because they're mostly crappy ones. I don't even have the confidence that Connecticut can cover a 20-point spread over UMass in their first FBS season. I feel even less confident in Syracuse-Northwestern. Last time I picked Rutgers to beat Tulane they cost me a good amount of real money, and there are just too many questions for that team with a new coach. So I guess I'm forced to take the lamest option on the board and pick Louisville to beat Kentucky, but I'm not touching the spread.
$15 on Akron (+24) over UCF
$10 on Washington State (ML +350) over BYU
$10 on FIU (ML +130) over Duke
$20 on Alabama (-14) over Michigan
$10 on Louisville (ML -500) over Kentucky
Finally, our reader competitor, the great gunsby:
You know what i realized? I'm technically a free agent, so I could claim loyalty to Central Michigan and be forced to pick MACtion every single week. I kid. Give me...
$10 on Boise State (+7) vs. Michigan State and $250 on the over of 4 passes thrown by Boise players who are not quarterbacks (please cancel that if it is an actual line).
$25 on Iowa State (+1) vs. Tulsa because I AM SO PROUD to be a home underdog to a non-AQ team.
A very nervous $10 on Kentucky (+13) vs. Louisville - oh gunsby why aren't you picking a nice easy Big East game with non-AQ teams you dummy Charlie Strong will probably eat you.
$100 on Stanford (-25.5) vs. San Jose State - cue the unLUCKy puns if this bombs.
$25 on Arizona vs. Toledo over 60.5 - RichRod vs. MACtion
And a polite $1 on Georgia Tech (+7.5) vs. Virginia Tech because as of five days ago I live in Atlanta and I guess this is what people do here ramble that wreck!!
Good luck you all. But not too much luck.