Once again, the team here is seeing things clearly. In Week 2, we went 4-3 straight, gave you Oregon State over Wisconsin, nearly came through with another big dog in Penn State and pegged the points scored for both Missouri and Texas A&M in their SEC debuts.
Even better, we were 6-0-1 versus “the number.” Not that anybody cares about such things, right?
That’s what we’ve done for you lately. Now, on to what’s up next.
TOP 5 GAMES OF THE WEEK (Thurs., Sept. 13 thru Sat., Sept. 15)
1) No. 20 Notre Dame at No. 10 Michigan State
Sat., Sept. 15 — 8 p.m. ET, ABC
Whaddaya know, the Fighting Irish have a shot to become relevant again. All they need to do is beat the Spartans.
Such an occurrence would mean Notre Dame improves to 3-0 for the first time in 10 years, breaks a six-game losing streak to ranked opponents on the road and effectively eliminates the Big Ten from BCS title contention in mid-September. All fairly amazing. Also quite difficult.
We don’t have much confidence in the Irish offensive line that was able to carve out just 52 rushing yards against Purdue last week. That spells trouble when going against a rugged Michigan State defensive unit that has yet to allow a touchdown, especially with an inexperienced quarterback starting his first game in a hostile environment.
Good luck to redshirt freshman Everett Golson, who had some pre-snap difficulty last week at home, and Tommy Rees when he comes in from the bullpen.
Irish backers will point to their team’s success in last year’s 31-13 victory over the Spartans, but it’s hard to imagine Mark Dantonio’s crew laying another egg like that at home. It hasn’t happened since and there’s certainly no reason to expect a recurrence in this spot.
Opening point spread: Michigan State by 2 1/2
The pick: Michigan State 24-16
2) No. 1 Alabama at Arkansas
Sat., Sept. 15 — 3:30 p.m. ET, CBS
As we all know, the Razorbacks had an utterly forgettable outing last Saturday. Allowing Louisiana-Monroe to leave Little Rock with a 34-31 overtime victory was an all-time low for Arkansas, which went from No. 8 to No. Nothing in a flash. (more…)