Okay, everyone stop messing around it's time to get serious. Most of the cupcakes are falling away and conference members are beginning to square off against each other.
Congratulations to "Gerry" for leading the way in week 4 with 12 correct picks. Heading into this weekend we have "Beardown_Irish" and "dudeacow" atop the overall standings at 53-31.
Ya boy is stuck in neutral, or worse.
Big E: 6-15 (43-41, 50th overall)
Now on to this week's biggest games...
Minnesota (+4) at No. 16 Northwestern
The Gophers were one of those plucky teams we thought might be ranked at this position of the season had they upset TCU or something. But, Northwestern? Is it time to revisit that loss to the Wildcats last year and say maybe it wasn't that bad? They've now beaten Wisconsin, Notre Dame, and Stanford if you combine a part of last year with the beginning of 2015. No, it was still a bad, bad loss.
This seems like a good place for Northwestern to suffer their first blemish, especially after looking not that good last week against an inferior opponent. Jerry Kill has been a master at winning these close league games.
No. 23 West Virginia (+6) at No. 15 Oklahoma
Pick: West Virginia
Last week the 'Neers drove an awfully big nail into the coffin of Randy Edsall's tenure at Maryland. How many more nails left to go? Some think West Virginia should be a legitimate candidate to win the Big 12, and I agree. But it seems like with TCU looking shaky, and Baylor having played a bunch of D-6 teams, the consensus is that the league just might be those plucky underdog Sooners' to take right now.
I know OU hasn't had great defenses in many years now so maybe this shouldn't be so crazy to type--West Virginia probably has a much better defense. Everyone is sleeping on this Mountaineer defense! Oklahoma's revamped offense will get theirs but I think an outright upset is possible.
No. 13 Alabama (+2) at No. 8 Georgia
Lots and lots of talk about the Alabama dynasty being over. After just 1 loss, no less. You know the bar is set high when that is happening to your program. That just goes to show when you're winning at a crazy high level things can turn into a ball of suck after just one 60 minute showing. This is the first time in roughly a millennium that the Crimson Tide won't be favored heading into a football game.
Georgia has been able to get by running over teams with their stupid good running backs. I have to think Alabama plugs holes a lot better and forces the ball into the hands of a quarterback who probably isn't going to carry the Dawgs to a win here.
Texas Tech (+17) at No. 5 Baylor
Pick: Texas Tech
Interesting move here for Tech who had their hearts ripped out by one league favorite last week and has to come back and play the other favorite this week. Do they go into a shell and get bombarded in the first half? Or do they rise up and play the best game of the Koach Kliff era?
I don't know about the Red Raiders springing an upset but we know nothing about Baylor's ability to stop a good offense and this is a lot of points to play with as a bettor. I'd probably lean towards Tech going into more of a shell with just enough juice on offense to cover.
No. 3 Ole Miss (-7) at No. 25 Florida
Pick: Ole Miss
Football is weird because you might have expected this line to be normal before the season, but a couple weeks ago it would feel crazy, but now it feels right again. Florida is coming off another win over Tennessee while Ole Miss really struggled against Vanderbilt.
You have to think there was a ton of letdown for the Rebels after that Alabama victory. Conversely, that comeback against the Vols probably took a lot out of the Gators. As such, a 2-score victory by Ole Miss seems like it's most likely.
No. 21 Miss State (+7) at No. 14 Texas A&M
Pick: Miss State
I almost didn't include this game. Anyone else just not feeling this one? I think it's the similarity in colors for me. Anyway, the Bulldogs have been laying low after losing to LSU earlier this season. I don't know if they are good enough to win in College Station but how about a nice little scare?
Arizona State (+13.5) at No. 7 UCLA
What's wrong with Arizona State? They are right up there as one of the biggest disappointments so far this season. They've only played 2 teams with a pulse and they lost by a combined 49 points.
UCLA is in the middle of a tough stretch right now. Some of their injuries could hurt them but not this weekend. As much as I hate to say it the Bruins might have the best offense in the country when it comes to balance and physicality. It's going to take them very far in the Pac-12.
Arizona (OFF) at No. 18 Stanford
This one is off the board due to the injury situation with Arizona quarterback Anu Solomon. In other places, the Cardinal were a double-digit favorite so this might be a free win for us.