Pick Six: Week 4

Last week’s theme, that everything in life is 6-5 against, didn’t go so well—although 3-4 was oh-so-close. Shame on you, Nick Saban, for lifting off the pedal three points short of that 71 O/U with nearly 15 minutes to play.

Herb,8-13,best, sized

Then again, while I have seen many coaches score a bit more to cover a point spread, I can’t say I’ve seen any of them try to cover an Over/Under. Whch is why I’m done with that wimpy bet—until the next time I see an O/U I like. (The Wisconsin-Iowa O/U of 44 is very tempting. Please read on.)

The good news: Duke and San Diego State were nice upset specials. You're welcome. . . And we did learn, the hard way, that there's no D in Oklahoma.

The theme of this week’s picks is another famous Damon Runyon quote: ``The race is not always to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, but that’s the way to bet.’’

Easy for him to say. He was betting before there were point spreads.

Good luck. Or, as they say at Notre Dame, ``Bonne Chance.’’

THE GAMES

(Central Flyover Time)

Penn State minus-28 at Illinois, 8 p.m., Friday, FS1

Notre Dame minus-7½ at Wake Forest, 11 a.m., ABC

Georgia minus-14 at Missouri, 11 a.m., ESPN

Texas A&M plus-25½ at Alabama, 2:30 p.m., CBS

TCU minus-3 at Texas, 3:30 p.m., Fox

Wisconsin minus-3 at Iowa, 7:30 p.m., Fox

Wisconsin at Iowa, O/U 44

Arizona State plus-17 at Washington, 9:30 p.m. ESPN

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THE PICKS

Penn State minus-28 at Illinois, 8 p.m., Friday, FS1

You would think that—having been burned when Illinois covered last week vs. South Florida—I would have learned my orange-and-blue lesson. The trouble is, I’m a bigger believer in blue-and-white. Give me James Franklin’s Nittany Lions juggernaut.

The Pick: Penn State

The Score: Nittany Lions, 49-17

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Notre Dame minus-7½ at Wake Forest, 11 a.m., ABC

One of these weeks, the Irish are going to break out on offense—or break down. This isn’t that week. ND follows the trend and wins. . . ugly. Coming off that Thursday game, Wake Forest has even had a couple of extra days to prepare for keeping it close.

The Pick: Wake Forest

The Score: Notre Dame, 34-31

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Georgia minus-14 at Missouri, 11 a.m., ESPN

I know Mizzou can move the ball. I’ve got my Drew Lock bobblehad/Heisman gimmick. I also the Tigers scuffle at Purdue. Gimme the Dawgs.

The Pick: Georgia

The Score: Dawgs, 48-21

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Texas A&M plus-25½ at Alabama, 2:30 p.m., CBS

How can A&M take one playoff stud (Clemson) to the wire and lose by four TDs to another playoff stud (Bama)? That’s how good the Crimson Tide is looking.

The Pick: Alabama

The Score: Crimson Tide, 49-14

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TCU minus-3 at Texas, 3:30 p.m., Fox

Nothing TCU did in its loss to Ohio State made me hop off the Horned Frogs’ bandwagon. And Texas will need to do more than beat a perplexing USC to win me back after that Maryland disaster. I like TCU to bounce back nicely from its Buckeye setback.

The Pick: TCU.

The Score: Horned Frogs, 31-27

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Wisconsin minus-3 at Iowa, 7:30 p.m., Fox

Very tricky game. If I were smart, I’d stay away. But if you liked the Hawkeyes getting six points, which is where this line started, what’s a field goal? Gulp. The Nile Kinnick mystique continues. And you know what? Give me the Under on the O/U of 44.

The Picks: Iowa. And take The Under.

The Score: Iowa, 20-17

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Arizona State plus-17 at Washington, 9:30 p.m. ESPN

Yup, the Sun Devils are an unbelievable 11-1 in their last 12 meetings with the Huskies. Let’s not get carried away with a 12th win. But heavens to Herm Edwards! Can’t resist 17 points.

The Pick: Arizona State

The Score: Washington, 35-21

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LAST WEEK: 3-4

SEASON: 8-11[/membership]

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