The Gould Standard picks: Week 7

Last week’s 3-3 may not look like much. But when you start out 0-2—who knew that Bowling Green’s offense would show up and Northwestern’s wouldn’t?—it’s a wonderful thing.

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After covering Penn State-Northwestern, I was driving north to the land of Badgers and Packers, and the XM radio delivered palpable excitement twice. First, Miami pulled out a thriller at Florida State. And then, after a 90-minute weather delay, Purdue woke up against Minnesota. In other words, 3-3 felt much better than disaster.

So I’m pleased to be 22-14 overall, with 14-7 against the spread and 8-7 on over/unders. In light of that, and because I’ve always felt ATS is meat-and-potatoes, let’s downsize the O/U exposure this week.

THE GAMES

Ohio State minus-24 at Nebraska

Georgia Tech plus-5 at Miami

Purdue plus-16-1/2 at Wisconsin

Arkansas plus-29 at Alabama

Oklahoma minus-8 vs. Texas

THE OVER/UNDER

Michigan State at Minnesota (40-1/2)

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THE GAME PICKS

Ohio State minus-24 at Nebraska

Blaudschun asked an interesting question on this week’s TMG podcast: When’s the last time Nebraska was a 24-point underdog at home? My answer would be, ``Never.’’ Which means that Nebraska has never covered as a 24-point dog at home. Sorry to get snarky. But give me Ohio State, because the Buckeyes are that good. And because they beat the Cornhuskers 62-3 in Columbus last year, when Nebraska wne going 9-4.

The score: Ohio State, 48-17

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Purdue plus-16-1/2 at Wisconsin

I really like what the Boilermakers are doing under Jeff Brohm. What I like even more is what the Badgers are doing as College Football Playoff dark horse.

The score: Wisconsin, 42-20

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Georgia Tech plus-5 at Miami

Hats off to the Yellow Jackets, who are having a good year. But this is looking like a breakout year for the Hurricanes. I’ll take Miami and give the points.

The score: Miami, 31-21

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Arkansas plus-29 at Alabama

A week after Alabama’s messy ``rat poison’’ game at Texas A&M, Arkansas, which has allowed 98 points in its first two SEC games, comes to Tuscaloosa. ‘Ya think the Crimson Tide, after coach Saban compared media accolades to rat poison, will be in a stompin’ mood?

The Score: Alabama, 49-10

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Oklahoma minus-8 vs. Texas

A lot of people are jumping off the Sooners bandwagon this week, at least in terms of covering, if not being upset outright. I’m not going there. Oklahoma ought to be ornery, not exposed, after the Iowa State debacle. And while the Longhorns are headed in the right direction under Tom Herman, they’re too skittery for my money. Give me Oklahoma in this battle between two of the nation’s top first-year coaches.

The score: Oklahoma, 38-28

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THE OVER/UNDER PICK

Michigan State at Minnesota (40-1/2)

I know. I know. Sparty didn’t score much while beating Iowa and Michigan. But those are big-time defenses. And Dantonio is bent on showing the Spartans are back. I also like the Gophers to show up after two frustrating weeks. I tend to think Sparty (minus-4) will cover. But I really like this low O/U number.

Take the OVER.

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LAST WEEK: 3-3 (3-1 ATS, 0-2 O/U).

SEASON: 22-14 (14-7 ATS, 8-7 O/U).[/membership]

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