Friday, November 14, 2008

Gambling 2K8: Chapter 41 (In Search Of Redemption)

I distinctly recall a moment in the fall of 1998 when a pleasnt thirty-something man slinging political buttons at a high school football game politely asked me if I'd like one. I took a button, immediately threw it on the ground and shouted, "I need one of these like I need a fucking hole in my head."

Is that a true story? Yes? Am I a jerk? Yes. Do I feel bad about that night? Not particularly.

But anyway, that's all I keep thinking about in regards to the Brian Vickers System...I need another bad weekend like I need a fucking hole in my head.

Last weekend was a disaster.

Bad weekends were bound to happen, but we didn't need Murphy's Law piling on. Had Alabama's kicker (a blocked chip-shot) and Sebastian Janikowski (hit the crossbar) made their field goals at the end of regulation, we'd have two more wins - and obviously, two more losses (not to mention $200 more in our account).

I had a miserable week. Those losses were the only thing on my mind and it kept me up at night. I never want to experience anything like that again. Please God, I'm begging you, give me AIDS before you give me another 2-9 weekend.


We hit our first college game, Miami over Ball State, but we're still in search of redemption. Vickers told us to bet on eight games, and winning six of 'em would help the healing process. The picks...

Louisville (+4) vs. UC

Words about things: You know how surfers who survive shark attacks always go back in the water once they've recovered? Well, that's me and Craig seemingly every week betting against the Bearcats. We lose a a chunk of flesh every week, but we keep going back in. And now we're forced to wager on a team who lost to the 'Cuse earlier this month.

Kansas (+14.5) vs. Texas

That's right: Kansas is what they is...a slightly above average team who can't slow down superior talent. Oklahoma dropped 45 on the Jayhawks; Texas Tech, 63. I'm expecting the same output from Texas, which means the Fighting Manginos will have to score 35 Saturday to have a shot of covering. I don't like our chances.

Navy (+4) vs. Fat Arrogant Jerk Charlie Weis

Sentences: Collin Cowherd often tells people who are about to do something stupid to "say it out loud first." If it just sounds wrong, don't do it. Let me tell you, an average Navy team (coming off a six-point home victory vs. Temple) only getting four points (and the line opened at three) against any Notre Dame team, is ridiculous. Before last season - when it took Navy three overtimes to topple a dreadful Irish squad - Notre Dame hadn't lost to the Middies in almost half a century - there's a reason for that, and I call it talent. Speaking of talent, Notre Dame has more than they did last year, while Navy, with the loss of that Reggie Campbell midget, has less. Plus, the Domer faithful are calling for Weis' giant head on a silver platter, which should intensify the Irish's focus. More importantly, I can't see Navy beating ND in consecutive years. I'm hoping for a three-point loss, unfortunately.

Quick apology: I'm not sure why, but I never posted video of Weis tearing his ACL on the sideline of the Michigan game. In case you haven't seen it, and if you're in need of a hearty laugh, here goes (and be sure to view the full screen version)...

The Syracuse Shoot Me In The Heads (+10) vs. UConnecticut (nee UConn)

Things and stuff: When you take a ten-point dog, you have to feel like they have a shot at winning outright. With Syracuse, no way. They'll lose to UConnecticut, lose their next two and finish the season with two wins (including a nine-point blowout of I-AA Northeatern!). Like I said, shoot me in the head.

Cal (+3) AT Oregon State

I hate myself: One more week of this and Oregon State will join UC on the short list of teams I'm sick of betting against. Why Vegas doesn't give them respect is beyond me. They've covered six straight games (there wasn't a line on the Arizona State game), and
none of them have really been close. Only Washington has come within seven points of covering against the Beavers since...wait for it...the first weekend of September! Armed with that knowledge, I'm clueless as to why Oregon State is only giving a field goal to a road team featuring QB Kevin Riley, who threw up the following stat line last week: 4-16, 51 yards, 1 INT and nothing resembling a TD.

San Jose State (+14.5) at Nevada

America: Did you watch Nevada last week in Fresno? They're good! Their QB and RB would start for Auburn tomorrow. I'm guessing they've battled injuries, because their 5-4 record makes no sense at all. The Boise Murdering Murderers come to Reno next week, and while I'm not calling for an upset, Nevada has the horses to play the perfect game and take them down. As for San Jose State, this is now our fourth consecutive game laying our hard-earned American dollars on them. We've lost the last three and I'm expecting the worst again on Saturday. The last two weeks I've complained about SJSU's inability to score - and they hit rock bottom last week, when 4-4 Louisiana Tech traveled to the west coast and held them scoreless. Yes, a shutout. A shutout! In the conference known for it's high-scoring games! The Wacky WAC! And Boise State wasn't involved! Again: San Jose State can't score points, and they play in a league where that's a prerequisite. They'll need 24-28 points on Saturday to even have a chance of covering.

Stanford (+23) vs. USC

Sports: Let's see...Stanford, as a 41-point road underdog, beat USC outright last year in maybe the
greatest upset in college football history. I really don't see Stanford scoring a single point on Saturday as USC serves (or perhaps unleashes) a Big Bowl of Payback.

San Diego State (+30) vs. Utah

Death of me: The Aztecs have one win on the season, a two-point thrashing of Cal Poly. They can also tell their friends and relatives they only lost by 63 to the New Mexico Lobos, a team who now sports a 4-7 record. In other words, we're hoping for a Christmas miracle in Novemeber.

Wish us luck!

Last week NCAA record: 4-6
Overall Vickers record: 56-53-1

-Brad Spieser (