How does a college football team prepare for the start of the season? Do you lay on new carpet every time you play, hoping the experience will translate? How do you spend your off time?
That’s a simple answer, but a very important one.
Before the 2006 college football season was upon us, I did a little bit of scouring to find the top handicappers in time to bet on theahoo morning jumbo odds.
Luck was surely on Michigan State’s side last Thursday night as they beat the Notre Dame Buckeyes 7-3. But you have to give credit to Irish coach Charlie Weis. He didn’t call for any pre-season predictions. That said, it’s not like Notre Dame wouldn’t have given the Spartans the heftiest boost to their BCS rankings that a team could give in early October.
Having said that, the fact that Michigan State was a profitable team and a rock solid team against the run, at least as compared to most programs, said everything. I finished off my Michigan State picks by telling everyone odds people the Irish couldn’t possibly cover the massive Michigan lead. They finished at 15-1 odds for my house and my wife, and I even had to bed her at 3:30 a.m. (Actually, one of my friends warned her not to stay up late, so she had to get up early — to go watch theUtah Bowl.)
Everybody knows about MPO500. They’re the program that won 40 games in a row. They’re the team that’s been to a couple Super Bowls. They have incredible fans. tremendously rabid. As far as the college football argument went, they had the best of times against USC. And they have a cool coach in Charlie Weis.
But, there’s something to be said for teams like this in the Big 12. With 7 or 8 teams to make it into the BCS bowl, every team has to win every game on their own. And a lot of times, the bragging rights get taken away from the school when two or three teams are on a streak of wins. Take Boise State. At the beginning of the season, they were a mortal lock to make the BCS after winning the Fiesta Bowl almost perfectly with a 17-15 victory over Georgia.
Into this quandary stepped Boise State. By the end of the season, the Broncos would have been the odds on favorite to win the Fiesta Bowl just about every time. Getting 17 points from Georgia was about the only blemish on their otherwise perfect regular season. And with the way the season unfolded, they might have been for real in the Fiesta Bowl.
After losing 21-16 to Georgia in the regular season finale, Boise State was absolutely firing at their opponent. Nobody had the better chance of upsetting the Broncos than the Falcons, who knew they were going to get tested early. Should Boise State have won the game outright? Maybe. But if they had, it would have been an amazing underdog victory to say the least.
What should we make of Boise State’s performance in the Fiesta Bowl? I’ll leave the analysis to you. How do you feel about Boise’s performance? Do you think that the Broncos deserve a spoil in the BCS title game?
BoDog Bookmakers, BoDog.ws: I think that Boise State deserves a shot at the title. their defense should be enough to carry them to a victory, especially if they can keep QB Alex Brink out of the Heisman race. This may not be a game that McNair would have chosen to end his career, but for understandable reasons, he didn’t end it with a bang. I think there will be a lot of pressure on Boise State to win one of these title games. A shot at the Heisman wasn’t likely once Pat Hill went down, but a miracle win here could mean that Boise State gets a chance to play in the National Championship game.
Other questions involve Southern Cal in the Pocket Rockets, uffs overmaster in CCU’s 44-31 victory over Wake Forest, and Florida in the Outback Bowl. These three games are by no means guarantee wins for the teams that participate, and all three could go either way. Give me a couple of days to analyze all of the games I’m tossing my money on, and I’ll have a better feel for where the luck riders are attired!