Each week, The State News’ degenerates who are 21 and older will be helping you try to earn some money with three picks of their own. Each week, we will update our records from the last week, so you can see who is really helping you cash in.
We’re now two weeks through the college football season (well technically three if you don't count that perplexing idea of Week 0) and Sam is the only one with a winning record so far. But what happened last week can’t be changed. Just like Wisconsin, Notre Dame and Texas A&M, it’s about turning the page after a forgettable weekend.
Sam Sklar, Sports Editor (4-2)
Now that right there is the week I was looking for. A 3-0 sweep and we are back in business. However, I must give a shoutout to Northwestern running back Evan Hull. Not only did he grow up in my neighboring hometown city, but the Duke-Northwestern under wouldn’t have been possible without him.
Colorado at Minnesota (-27.5)
You know who leads the nation in total yards per game? You guessed it, Tanner Morgan and the Minnesota Golden Gophers. And do you know who is second in the nation in points allowed per game and first in yards allowed per game? Yup, the Gophers.
Now, they’ve played a pair of cupcake teams in New Mexico State and Western Illinois to begin the season, but the reunification of Morgan and offensive coordinator Kirk Ciarrocca looks like it’s clicking again. It’s certainly a much stronger offense than what was put on the field by former offensive coordinator Mike Sanford Jr. Where is Sanford now you might ask? Colorado. I don’t think he’s a very good offensive coordinator.
Minnesota defeated Colorado 30-0 in Boulder last year and I think this year’s Gophers are better than last year’s. In fact, I’ve got them tabbed as the top team in the Big Ten West. I’ve been saying it since the start of the summer and I believe it even more now. This is my favorite pick of the week.
Georgia at South Carolina (under 55.5)
Nobody forgets Georgia's historical defense from last season that had oodles of NFL draft picks. While this defense is not on that same level, it is still one of the tops in the country. Georgia is 24.5-point favorites, a line I sniffed around myself, but I think this game has a slight potential to be a little bit closer than that. And it’s not because I am high on South Carolina.
It’s the Gamecocks’ first big home game since Spencer Rattler joined the team, and I think the team and fans will be extra fired up with Georgia in town. To that point, I haven’t been impressed with Rattler and the South Carolina offense. The offensive line is abysmal. Good luck trying to block against that Georgia defense.
Kansas at Houston (-8.5)
I like Kansas. I think it’s a program moving in the right direction. Even though Houston barely squeaked by UTSA and lost at Texas Tech, I certainly believe the Cougars are 8.5 points better at home than KU.
Alex Faber, Football Reporter (2-4)
Alright, so another bad week. I bought into the Anthony Richardson hype a bit too soon and the Chippewas were just god awful. Luckily, Vanderbilt being Vanderbilt saved me from a complete disaster of a weekend.
Purdue (ML) at Syracuse
Just a couple of weeks ago, Purdue nearly beat Penn State at home. If it weren’t for some atrocious time management from Head Coach Jeff Brohm, the Boilermakers would be 2-0 right now. I think they get the season back on track this Saturday with an impressive showing on the East Coast.
Syracuse has looked decent thus far. This won’t be an easy win for the Boilermakers, but I have faith in Aidan O’Connell to get the job done. Mediocre Big Ten teams > mediocre ACC teams.
California at Notre Dame (-11)
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The start of the Marcus Freeman era has not been great. After a surprisingly close loss to Ohio State, the Fighting Irish came back to South Bend just to lose to Marshall. Notre Dame was placed at No. 5 in the AP Poll heading into the season -- just two weeks in, and they are outside of the top 25.
Cal beat UNLV by just six points at home last weekend. The Golden Bears were 5-7 last season, and I think there’s a good chance they’ll be worse this year. Notre Dame has been disappointing this season, but I’m going with the “good team fired up after a loss” angle and taking the Irish in a blowout. I still believe in Freeman as a head coach.
Penn State at Auburn (ML)
Penn State barely beat Purdue on the road in week one. If the Nittany Lions were intimidated by the crowd at Ross-Ade, Jordan-Hare is going to be an absolute nightmare.
This will be the second consecutive matchup between the programs. Last year, Penn State eked out a 28-20 win thanks in part to an electric home environment. I’m not especially high on Auburn this year, but going down south in one of the more raucous college football environments in the country is not going to be an easy task. I think the players and the fans will have last year’s loss on their minds. Give me Auburn in an extremely physical and competitive game.
Eli McKown, State News Contributor (1-5)
This is not the start we ever envisioned.
Bear with me guys, I promise we’ll be on the up and up soon.
Old Dominion (+8) at Virginia
Here’s the thing, Old Dominion owns the state of Virginia this year.
The Cavaliers this offseason lost nearly its entire offensive line, and it has shown so far. Quarterback Brennan Armstrong has struggled to get passes off all season to what is a talented wide receiver core.
The Monarchs were able to compete in the trenches with Virginia Tech and pull off a win, I like them to do it here as well and at least cover the spread. Feel free to sprinkle some on the moneyline.
BYU ML at Oregon
BYU owns the Pac-12. That’s all you need to know.
Miami ML at Texas A&M
If you think that Miami’s Tyler Van Dyke won’t outscore Texas A&M’s abysmal offense, you’re completely wrong.
The Aggies cursed themselves with their midnight yell prior to the Appalachian State game by taking into question whether the Mountaineers existed or not. I would show it to you, but Texas A&M has scrubbed it from Twitter for copyright issues evidently.
Here’s the thing, we should all know better than to question Appalachian State and who they are, just ask the fans in Ann Arbor.
I like Miami to come in and knock the Aggies by a lot in this one. The Aggies will be forever cursed for that video to ever exist.
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