Monday, November 2, 2015

Football College and Pro: Some things.

1. I still know nothing about College Football. Another horrible week (thanks Nebraska, Arizona State and Pitt) has me at 19-31 ATS (38%) and looking at an overall losing season for the remainder of the year if I don't get things in gear.  The scary thing, even if I go 20-0 (not likely) the BEST I can hope for is 39-31 which is around 55%.  That's if I run the table for the rest of the year.

I've had bad runs picking college football games in the past, but nothing like I'm seeing this year. I'm trying out a new ratings system this year and it's going into the scrap heap.  For the next few weeks I'm going back to my old system and, where that's short, am playing line moves in my Five. 

I will say this, had I stuck with 10 games (as I did in prior years) I'd be doing fairly well.  I haven't ran all of the numbers yet but I think I'd be right around 50%.  This means that I'm still picking games OK, but doing a HORRIBLE job picking which games to pick.

2. Duke.Was.Robbed. And while Miami has been partaking in some high-caliber trolling since the play it's telling just how far that program has fallen that they're celebrating a steal-win in a season where they underperformed so greatly that Al Golden got fired.

The U is a mess.  Show some pride.

3. After reading this I almost wish the Texans would have lost the game yesterday.

The Texans are not a good football team. Unfortunately, the AFC South is the worst division in football.  This means that the massive changes the team needs are not going to happen because (and you know this is true) the brain-trust running the franchise believes they are just a bounce or three away from true contention.

The Texans wins this year?

Tampa Bay (3-4)
Jacksonville (2-5)
Tennessee (1-6)

In other words, they're just good enough to NOT get a top five draft pick but are going to either back into the playoffs with a horrible record or, are going to finish just behind the Colts because they will lose the tie-breaker.  After 9-7 last year a 7-9 or 8-8 finish, whether they make the playoffs or no, will be a step back. 

Hell, the play on the field is a step back. It's obvious this is a dysfunctional franchise that needs an overhaul.  The only people that refuse to accept that are the ones making the decisions or being paid to put a brave face on things.  At least the media is starting to get it.

4. My Team: The San Francisco 49ers are imploding. And if reading that story reminds you a little bit of the Texans, it wouldn't come as much of a surprise. Bad Ownership?  Check.  Bad General Managers who have bungled several drafts?  Check.  Bad Coaching decisions? Check.

The only real difference is that the 49ers actually have a once-good QB.  And they've ruined him. Now they're going to pin the blame on Kaepernick ignoring the fact that they are being out-coached and out-talented in every game.

Actually, it sounds a LOT like the Texans, who are getting out-coached and out-talented in almost every game.  The only difference is the divisions in which the two teams play.  If the Texans were in the NFC West they might be winless so-far this year.

5. The College Football Playoff Committee will release their first Top 25 tomorrow.

They are going to get it wrong.  I know this because they are going to undervalue the American Athletic Conference and put too much value on the SEC, ACC, PAC-12, B1G and BIG XII conferences, none of which are particularly strong this year.  Here's what I think their Top 10 is going to look like:

1. LSU - Good team, but hasn't really played anyone yet.
2. Clemson - Again, good team, but how quality are their existing wins to date?
3. Ohio State - Good team, hasn't looked the part yet.
4. Baylor - Their schedule to date should exclude them from the top 4.
5. TCU - I think they're better than Baylor, but who knows at this point?
6. Alabama - Because, Saban and SEC bias.
7. Stanford - Nevermind the loss, let's focus on getting a PAC-12 team in there.
8. Michigan State - No committee love for the B1G
9. Notre Dame - Most overrated team in the country.
10. Oklahoma State - 2nd most overrated team in the country.

My Top Ten looks like this:

1. Ohio State - You don't knock the defending champions out of the top spot until they're beaten on the field.
2. LSU - They have looked the part.
3. Clemson - We'll see about them this week.
4. Memphis - Has the best resume of any of the undefeated teams not listed above.
5. TCU - At least they've played teams with a pulse. (Looking at you Baylor)
6. Michigan State - I won't put a one-loss team above an undefeated one unless said undefeated team hasn't played anyone of note (Hi Baylor!!!)
7. Iowa - See above
8. Houston - Ditto
9. OSU - Ditto
10. Toledo - I don't love them here, but the Arkansas and ISU wins look solid.

Ignoring everything else, I will argue that the American Athletic Conference, this year, is just as tough of an out as is the ACC or PAC-12 and their conference wins, especially when the top teams play each other, should be weighted accordingly.

Does this mean I think Iowa, or Houston or OSU or Toledo could beat Alabama?

No, but that's not the question. The top 25 is not a power ranking, nor should it be. It's a representation of where schools rank based on their play in the current season to date. Actually, on power rankings I have Alabama ranked in the top 4.  Just so you don't think I'm totally crazy.

Ignorant about College Football spreads this year?  I'll give you that one.

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