First of all, go to the Following Football homepage for the results and standings for all FANTASY TEAM FOOTBALL players (this is a link – click it!)…
Next, here were the 11 predictions from last week…
Boston College at North Carolina St (-4). WIN, barely, as NC St held on from a twenty point lead to win by just five.
Florida State at Miami-FL (-12.5) We were roasted early, although Miami came back to at least win outright, 28-27. LOSS.
Iowa (-6) at Minnesota WIN, easily, as the Hawkeyes won 48-31.
Nebraska at Wisconsin (-20.5) LOSS, even though Wisconsin was in control the entire game. 41-24 didn’t beat the spread.
Oklahoma (-7.5) vs. Texas at the Cotton Bowl A spectacular LOSS, as Texas shredded Oklahoma’s defense and held just enough to win.
California at Arizona (+2) WIN, outright, as expected: 24-17, Wildcats. Kevin Sumlin will succeed soon there.
UTSA (+2) at Rice WIN outright again, as expected, 20-3. UTSA may not be what they once were, but Rice is bad.
Miami-Ohio at Akron (-3) LOSS, big time, 41-17 Miami. Oh well.
Bowling Green at Toledo (-20.5) LOSS, but like the Wisconsin beat, it wasn’t that Toledo wasn’t in charge. They just failed to cover (52-36).
Wyoming (+3.5) at Hawaii LOSS, and Vegas had it right (17-13 Hawaii). Oh well.
And on Friday, if you see this on time (it’s before game time by 15 minutes as I type this!), Utah State (+2.5) at BYU. The easiest WIN of the week. BYU had one good game this year – beating Wisconsin there – and Utah State hasn’t had a bad one yet. 45-20, and it wasn’t that close.
Final tally: FIVE out of ELEVEN, just under half this week; the two not-quite-covers make it feel like 7/11, but it’s not. Following Football is 24 out of 43 (56%) for the season so far. Against the lines in Las Vegas, we again won more than half our predictions (40-33, with five pushes). Overall for the season, we’re batting 55% against the spread (264-216), and still we refuse to play real money, in fear of the Lord’s vengeance for my pride and folly. So for your sake, I’ll continue to abstain myself… In terms of straight up predictions, we only got 67.4% right this week (64/95), although that was better than either the Sagarin ratings (61/95, 64%) or Vegas itself (46/69, 66.7%). For the year, we’re at 502/647 (77.6%), superior to both (Sagarin’s at 76.8%; Vegas at 75.5%). I’m no longer going to track our “closest to the pin” rankings comparing the three ratings for each game, because frankly we’ve proven our point – we won 46 games this week, after 39 for Sagarin and 26 for Vegas, with a huge lead for the season of sixty games. Point proven, and it was actually a pointless thing to track.
FOR NEXT WEEK, here are the games we feel most confident about:
DUKE (+2) at Georgia Tech (we see at least overtime, or even an outright Duke win)
MIAMI-FL (- 6) at Virginia. (We got burned by them last week, but only six points against the Cavaliers? C’mon!)
VIRGINIA TECH (-6) at North Carolina. (See previous comments. VaTech’s undervalued right now.)
IOWA (-5) at Indiana. (We’re taking a lot of visiting favorites, which is against standard parlance… but Vegas knows that’s the way folks bet, too.)
Nebraska at NORTHWESTERN (- 4). (We have this at seventeen points! Sagarin’s lowest number is over twelve. Take the points! It’s Nebraska…)
Baylor at TEXAS (-14). (This one scares us, and if you’re leaving one out, this is it. After losing twice last week because a dominant team didn’t bother to cover, this smells of the same thing. The Longhorns win easily, but Baylor might be able to stay within two touchdowns if Texas doesn’t mind. You know what? DON’T TAKE THIS ONE. ERASE THIS ONE. I may regret it later, but I’d rather not risk it.)
WASHINGTON (- 3) at Oregon. (Three points, on the other hand, is too small for UW to take a chance by standing pat at a field goal, and they are significantly better than this year’s Ducks.)
FLORIDA (- 7) at Vanderbilt. (Same deal. Seven is too small; we think it’s two TDs, and Sagarin agrees.)
MISSISSIPPI (-6.5) at Arkansas. (Sorry, another visiting favorite to cover. But Arkansas is almost worse than Nebraska and UCLA.)
MIDDLE TENNESSEE (+ 2) at Florida International. (The Blue Raiders should win outright. They’re possibly the best team in the C-USA East, maybe the whole conference sans UNT. FIU is not.)
Louisiana Tech at UT-SAN ANTONIO (+ 13). (Hey, we’re picking a home dog!!)
UL-Monroe at COASTAL CAROLINA (- 4.5). (We have CC as twelve-point favorites. Like many other cases on this list, it’s a situation where one team’s on the rise and the other one’s experiencing cracks and chinks across its roster.)
So, eleven games (we’re serious about not counting Texas/Baylor – but we’re very curious about that game now!). If we get six out of eleven, we’re right on average (which is why we pick 11, not 10).
As for the fourth week of the fantasy team football leagues – the SBAC and the Relegation Leagues – the games this week go off in this pattern in every conference (click here to check the Following Football page for the teams and past status and all that):
Team 2 @ Team 1
Team 3 @ Team 4
Team 8 @ Team 6
Team 9 @ Team 7
Team 5 has a bye OR plays at Team 10 (in a ten-team league).