In a late-breaking nugget of news, I've discovered that some skulduggery has been going down in the world of Beacon Pigskin Picks.
Yes, I know. I'm shaken, too. It seems that a certain advertising manager has been using an alternative college football source to obtain additional information. (Translation: She's cheating.) Let this disclosure of the truth serve as a warning. Keep this
up and your slot in the Magnificent 7 will be disbanded, and you'll be replaced. Keep your eyes on your own paper and turn your hats around backwards, guys.
Pittsburgh at Notre Dame, 2:30 p.m. (NBC)
Yuck. Do I really have to pick this game?
I watched both the Panthers and Irish play last weekend, and it was just hard to stomach.
Somebody's got to win, though. And why not Notre Dame at home? They haven't tasted victory yet this year, and if ND doesn't beat Pitt, Irish coach Bob Davie's head will be carted off on a stick.
Irish 30, Panthers 21
No. 15 Michigan at Penn State, 3:30 p.m. (ABC regional)
Simply, Michigan wins.
That means tack another week onto the Paterno Watch, as legendary Penn State coach Joe Paterno tries to tie - and eventually break - Paul "Bear" Bryant's record for career coaching wins.
I still contend that FSU coach Bobby Bowden will beat him to the mark. And for the record, that's a shame. JoePa is a guy not getting a whole lot of respect these days, even though his program and track record command nothing but respect.
The Lions are looking at a one-win season, though. Two at the most.
Wolverines 34, Nittany Lions 7
No. 5 Texas vs. No. 3 Oklahoma, 3:30 p.m. (ABC)
*Sigh*
I remember this game from last year.
It has to be the worst pick picked in pigskin predicting history. I took Texas, a slight underdog, and paid for it dearly. Oklahoma, the eventual national champs, mauled the Horns at Dallas' Cotton Bowl, 63-14.
Hopefully those folks down in Austin haven't forgotten that one, either. Oklahoma looked a almost beatable last week against a good Kansas State team (Note: The Sooners haven't lost since 1999), and Texas has blown by its early-season Little Debbie specia
ls.
So with that, I'll take my chances with Chris Simms and "the other UT" again. Can't be any worse than last year.
Longhorns 38, Sooners 30
No. 2 Florida at No. 18 Louisiana State, 3:30 p.m. (CBS)
LSU coach Nick Saban needs to hunt down his schedule-makers and give them a good, stern talking-to.
No. 6 Tennessee at Neyland Stadium one week, and then the No. 2 Gators at home the next. Doesn't hardly seem fair does it, Nick? LSU might have had a shot against Florida another week (See: 1997), but the Gators' offense is looking just scary these days.
Mississippi State figured that out last week, when UF quarterback Rex Grossman torched Joe Lee Dunn's defensive unit for six touchdowns, five through the air and one on the ground.
Look for more Grossman, more Gators fireworks.
Gators 41, Tigers 17
Virginia at No. 25 Maryland, noon
Maryland is the best team you've never heard of. Tackle football's version of the Little Engine that Could, if you will.
Reason why: Terps coach and Maryland grad Ralph Fridgen.
This guy was a good offensive coordinator at Georgia Tech, and he's carried that mindset on over to suburban D.C.
The name to remember for Maryland is Bruce Perry. The redshirt sophomore tailback came into the season second on the depth chart, but now leads the nation in rushing, averaging 170 yards a game.
Terrapins 35, Cavaliers 24
Georgia at No. 6 Tennessee, noon (CBS)
Just think of the differences in this year's UGA-UT tilt from last season's.
Former Vols quarterback A.J. Suggs, who played in about half of UGA's 21-10 win last October, wore No. 15. Now the jersey is sported by UT walk-on receiver Kelley Washington.
And just for a little sidebar, Washington will always be a walk-on. The Marlins have agreed to pay for his education, saving the Vols a scholarship and making Washington the best walk-on in the country.
Another departure for this year's game: coaches.
At UGA, Jim Donnan is out and Mark Richt now walks the sidelines. Also, Doug Marrone was an assistant coach at Georgia last year; now, he's the tight ends and line coach for the Vols.
In a nutshell, more revenge for Tennessee on Saturday. (See my War of Words with UGA Red & Black Sports Editor Gentry Estes on page .)
Volunteers 34, Bulldogs 16
Other top-25 argy-bargies: Miami 104, Troy State 7; Nebraska 40, Iowa State 10; Oregon 41, Arizona 37; Virginia Tech 27, West Virginia 20; Washington 30, USC 17; Colorado 28, Kansas State 20; South Carolina 30, Kentucky 14; Northwestern 31, Ohio State -3;
Georgia Tech 50, Duke 7; BYU 30, Utah State 14; Purdue 21, Iowa 18; Toledo 24, Ohio 14; Texas A&M 35, Baylor 10.
(Last week: 14-4, Season: 67-10)