|Florida takes on Alabama this weekend|
Greetings from Central Florida. This week's picks are brought to you by Bubbalou's BBQ, Jimmy John's Gourmet Sandwiches, and Publix Supermarkets...where shopping is a pleasure.
Tomorrow (likely today by the time you read this) is team building day for my sales group. After gorging ourselves with BBQ, we're going bowling...because we had a good month and could use some down time. The Gators had a good month too, but just like in sales, no good month goes unpunished. I do not expect October's results to look like September's results.
Here in the Sunshine State, lofty expectations have all but ruined the season for some disappointed and somewhat delusional FSU and UCF fans. As I type this, USF is getting sodomized by Pitt on ESPN, and I've yet to find anyone outside of a few UF homers who expect Florida to beat Alabama Saturday night.
So for the first time in a long time, I'm not going to stress over the next two weeks, or next two months for that matter. I like the direction of UF's football program. Emotional tirades aside, Will Muschamp appears to know what he's doing, Charlie Weis is making sweet wine out of sour grapes, and most importantly Georgia sucks.
That's all I got...I need to practice WiiBowling before going to bed.
Buffalo at Tennessee
Lost in the panic over Justin Hunter's season-ending injury, it was recently reported that UT's mascot Smokey also tore his ACL a couple weeks ago. But unlike Justin Hunter, Smokey is expected back for the big game next week against Georgia....who's had their own problems keeping mascots from going to doggy heaven. Losing to Florida takes its toll I guess.
Vols - 41
Buffalonians - 7
Mississippi State at Georgia
Speaking of the Commie bastards from Athens, Mark Richt looks to quiet his critics, and avenge last year's unexpected loss in Starkville. After getting some pre-season love, MSU QB Chris Relf done lost his mojo...or perhaps opposing defensive coordinators are actually taking time to watch Mississippi State game film, where they've quickly learned that Relf can't hit the broad side of a barn. UGA's freshman tailback has another big game, and Richt's seat cools down for exactly one week.
Athens Dawgs - 21
Starkville Dawgs - 9
Texas A&M at Arkansas
Arkansas can't be as awful as Alabama made them look last week, can they? Man I nope not. Considering Arkansas has wide receivers who actually factor into the passing game (unlike my Gators), I choose to believe they just had a bad day and crapped the bed. Oklahoma State did all they could to give Texas A&M a win last week, but the Aggies weren't having it. In what promises to be an annual battle to determine 4th place in the SEC West, the home team offers Texas A&M a glimpse of what to expect in God's conference.
Hogs - 27
Aggies - 22
Auburn at South Carolina
Marcus Lattimore just keeps carrying the Gamecocks on his shoulders while Stephen Garcia plays with shiny objects over in the corner. The ole ball coach would KILL to have Doug Johnson right about now. Auburn failed its first road test at Clemson, but you just know at some point South Carolina will lose a game they have no business losing. Seeing as how Auburn doesn't play defense, this probably won't be that game....or will it?
War Eagle - 31
Gamecocks - 30
Clemson at Virginia Tech - A She She Game of the Week
You want a sure thing? Ask yourself this question, "Self, when was the last time in your lifetime Clemson won games against ranked opponents in THREE consecutive weeks?". Place your bets accordingly.
Hokies - 23
Tigers - 17
Nebraska at Wisconsin
ESPN Gameday chose to broadcast live from Madison instead of Gainesville on Saturday, further fueling speculation that Desmond Howard has a thing for pasty, full-sized coeds. Considering he attended the University of Michigan, I understand. Most years it's difficult to tell these two teams apart, right down to their red uniforms and pasty, full-sized coeds. But unlike most years Wisconsin has a play-making QB who can beat you with his arm or his legs...and the Badgers are playing at home.
Jump Around - 34
Children of the Corn - 20
Alabama at Florida
eViL G welcomes his favorite Alabama fan on the planet, fellow BellSouth alum Garland Harwell, to the world's most dangerous tailgate on Saturday. Garland is making his first trip to Gainesville this weekend, and I'm struggling to envision a scenario where he leaves Gainesville unhappy, outside of getting pelted with urine bombs near Fraternity Row or having the tires slashed on his rental car. Luckily for Garland we only do that when Tennessee comes to town.
I've been accused of being overly pessimistic about UF's chances. Some of my critics point out that UF's front seven is equipped to contain Trent Richardson, or how stellar UF's special teams have been up to this point, or how Bama's offense outside of Richardson isn't all that exciting, or how great a home field advantage at the Swamp is...all valid points I guess.
If McCarron throws 4 INTs, Chris Rainey blocks a couple punts, Florida's receivers start making plays, and Trent Richardson gets food poisoning, then yeah, the Gators have a shot. I expect none of that to happen.
Alabama's defense is downright scary. It has no weaknesses. Period.
Unlike last season I expect UF to compete, I expect them to have a great game plan and do some things offensively we haven't seen yet. I expect a competitive game for about 3 quarters, at which point the better team pulls away.
There's no shame in losing to a superior team.
Alabama is superior to Florida.
Tide - 28
Gators - 17