The Pi-Rate Ratings

September 29, 2008

PiRate Ratings For College Football–Week of: September 30 to October 4, 2008

NCAA Week Six: The Odds Must Be Crazy

 

After a week of major upsets, the national championship picture could begin to come into focus if two or three additional teams face the upset bug in the next couple of weeks.  In the SEC, Alabama and LSU face off in Baton Rouge on November 8.  In the Big 12, four undefeated South Division teams must play each other beginning October 11, while Missouri must still play Oklahoma State and Texas from the South.  In the Big 10, Penn State must play at Wisconsin and at Ohio State, so there’s no guarantee the Nittany Lions will run the table.

 

Brigham Young, Utah, Boise State, Tulsa, and Ball State are the non-BCS teams still in contention for a BCS Bowl bid.  Of course the Utes and Cougars finish the regular season facing off at Utah.

 

There are three games this week between ranked teams.  Auburn plays at Vanderbilt, where the Commodores will welcome ESPN’s Gameday crew for the first time ever.  Oregon goes to Southern Cal, where the Trojans better be ready to bounce back or they could suffer loss number two.  Ohio State comes to Madison to take on Wisconsin, where the loser can begin to look at playing in the Outback Bowl.  Perhaps the most interesting game of the week is the Rice-Tulsa game.  Both teams are capable of scoring more than a point per minute and did just that last weekend.

 

 

 

NCAA Top 25 For 30-Sep-2008

Rank

Team

PiRate

Won

Lost

1

Oklahoma

128

4

0

2

Florida 

125

3

1

3

Missouri

124

4

0

4

Georgia 

123

4

1

5

Southern Cal

122

2

1

6 tie

Alabama

120

5

0

6 tie

Penn St.

120

5

0

8

South Florida

120

5

0

9

Ohio St.

120

4

1

10

Texas

119

4

0

11

Oregon

119

4

1

12

Brigham Young

118

4

0

13

L S U

117

4

0

14

Kansas

115

3

1

15

Texas Tech

114

4

0

16

Auburn

114

4

1

17

Tennessee

114

1

3

18

Wisconsin

113

3

1

19

Clemson

113

3

2

20

Oklahoma St.

112

4

0

21

Utah

112

5

0

22

South Carolina

112

3

2

23

Florida St.

111

3

1

24

West Virginia

111

1

2

25

Virginia Tech

110

4

1

     

 

 

Note: Ratings rounded to nearest whole number

even though I rank them to two decimal points

           

 

PiRate Ratings By Conference

Atlantic Coast Conference

Atlantic Division

 

 

 

   
Team

Conf.

Overall

Rating

Off

Def

Clemson

1-1

3-2

113

69

44

Florida State

0-1

3-1

111

67

44

Wake Forest

1-0

3-1

108

62

46

Maryland

1-0

4-1

106

67

39

Boston College

0-1

3-1

104

62

42

North Carolina State

0-1

2-3

91

60

31

 

 

 

 

   
Coastal Division

 

 

 

   
Team

Conf.

Overall

Rating

Off

Def

Virginia Tech

2-0

4-1

110

68

42

North Carolina

1-1

3-1

106

69

37

Georgia Tech

1-1

3-1

102

64

38

Miami

0-1

2-2

100

59

41

Duke

1-0

3-1

99

64

35

Virginia 

0-1

1-3

88

54

34

 

Big East Conference

 

 

 

 

   
Team

Conf.

Overall

Rating

Off

Def

South Florida

0-0

5-0

120

76

44

West Virginia

0-0

2-2

111

70

41

Connecticut

1-0

5-0

108

66

42

Cincinnati

0-0

3-1

106

63

43

Pittsburgh

1-0

3-1

103

60

43

Rutgers

0-0

1-3

102

61

41

Louisville

0-1

2-2

101

62

39

Syracuse

0-1

1-4

82

53

29

 

Big Ten

           
Team

Conf.

Overall

Rating

Off

Def

Penn State

1-0

5-0

120

74

46

Ohio State

1-0

4-1

120

68

52

Wisconsin

0-1

3-1

113

71

42

Michigan State

1-0

4-1

109

66

43

Illinois

0-1

2-2

105

67

38

Michigan

1-0

2-2

104

63

41

Iowa

0-1

3-2

101

64

37

Minnesota

0-1

4-1

101

67

34

Purdue

0-0

2-2

100

66

34

Northwestern

1-0

5-0

99

63

36

Indiana

0-1

2-2

94

63

31

 

Big 12

North Division          
Team

Conf.

Overall

Rating

Off

Def

Missouri

0-0

4-0

124

76

48

Kansas

0-0

3-1

115

66

49

Colorado

0-0

3-1

103

65

38

Nebraska

0-0

3-1

101

63

38

Kansas State

0-0

3-1

98

68

30

Iowa State

0-0

2-2

92

56

36

South Division          
Team

Conf.

Overall

Rating

Off

Def

Oklahoma

0-0

4-0

128

83

45

Texas

0-0

4-0

119

75

44

Texas Tech

0-0

4-0

114

75

39

Oklahoma State

0-0

4-0

112

69

43

Baylor

0-0

2-2

94

61

33

Texas A&M

0-0

2-2

91

55

36

 

Conference USA

East Division          
Team

Conf.

Overall

Rating

Off

Def

East Carolina

1-1

3-2

100

64

36

Marshall

2-0

3-2

93

57

36

Central Florida

0-1

1-3

93

53

40

Memphis

0-2

2-3

91

60

31

Southern Miss.

0-1

2-2

90

60

30

U A B

0-1

1-4

85

49

36

West Division          
Team

Conf.

Overall

Rating

Off

Def

Tulsa

1-0

4-0

103

69

34

Houston

1-0

2-3

94

60

34

Tulane

1-1

2-2

91

58

33

Rice

2-0

3-2

90

63

27

U T E P

1-0

1-3

85

53

32

S M U

0-2

1-4

78

56

22

 

Independents

           
Team

 

Overall

Rating

Off

Def

Notre Dame  

3-1

103

63

40

Navy  

3-2

98

59

39

Army  

0-4

77

47

30

 

Mid American Conference

East Division          
Team

Conf.

Overall

Rating

Off

Def

Bowling Green

0-0

2-2

99

66

33

Buffalo

1-1

2-3

98

64

34

Temple

0-2

1-4

96

57

39

Ohio U

0-1

1-4

92

53

39

Akron

0-1

2-3

91

60

31

Miami (O)

0-0

1-3

90

58

32

Kent State

0-1

1-4

86

56

30

           
West Division          
Team

Conf.

Overall

Rating

Off

Def

Ball State

2-0

5-0

107

70

37

Central Michigan

2-0

3-2

98

66

32

Western Michigan

2-0

4-1

98

62

36

Northern Illinois

1-1

2-2

97

61

36

Toledo

1-0

1-3

91

60

31

Eastern Michigan

0-2

1-4

81

52

29

 

Mountain West Conference

           
Team

Conf.

Overall

Rating

Off

Def

Brigham Young

0-0

4-0

118

73

45

Utah

2-0

5-0

112

68

44

T C U

1-0

4-1

110

65

45

Air Force

1-1

3-1

92

55

37

New Mexico

0-1

2-3

89

58

31

UNLV

0-1

3-2

89

59

30

Wyoming

0-2

2-3

87

54

33

Colorado State

0-0

2-2

85

56

29

San Diego State

0-0

1-3

84

53

31

 

Pac-10 Conference

           
Team

Conf.

Overall

Rating

Off

Def

Southern Cal

0-1

2-1

122

69

53

Oregon

2-0

4-1

119

72

47

California

1-0

3-1

110

69

41

Oregon State

1-1

2-2

110

72

38

Arizona State

1-0

2-2

110

67

43

Arizona

1-0

3-1

108

70

38

Stanford

2-1

3-2

102

62

40

U C L A

0-1

1-3

99

58

41

Washington

0-2

0-4

97

62

35

Washington State

0-2

1-4

85

55

30

 

Southeastern Conference

East Division          
Team

Conf.

Overall

Rating

Off

Def

Florida 

1-1

3-1

125

77

48

Georgia 

1-1

4-1

123

74

49

Tennessee

0-2

1-3

114

70

44

South Carolina

0-2

3-2

112

66

46

Kentucky

0-0

4-0

110

63

47

Vanderbilt

2-0

4-0

107

63

44

West Division          
Team

Conf.

Overall

Rating

Off

Def

Alabama

2-0

5-0

120

69

51

L S U

2-0

4-0

117

72

45

Auburn

2-1

4-1

114

66

48

Ole Miss

1-1

3-2

110

68

42

Mississippi State

0-2

1-4

104

59

45

Arkansas

0-1

2-2

93

65

28

 

Sunbelt Conference

           
Team

Conf.

Overall

Rating

Off

Def

Troy

1-0

2-2

98

63

35

Florida Atlantic

0-0

1-3

93

62

31

Louisiana-Lafayette

0-0

1-3

90

63

27

Louisiana-Monroe

0-0

1-3

89

55

34

Middle Tennessee

0-2

1-3

88

55

33

Arkansas State

1-0

3-2

87

57

30

Florida International

0-0

1-3

85

53

32

* Western Kentucky

0-0

2-3

83

52

31

North Texas

0-0

0-4

72

52

20

           
* Western Kentucky will become eligible in 2009      
Their games will not count in the SBC Standings in 2008    

 

Western Athletic Conference

           
Team

Conf.

Overall

Rating

Off

Def

Fresno State

0-0

3-1

108

69

39

Boise State

0-0

3-0

107

68

39

Nevada

0-0

2-2

96

66

30

San Jose State

1-0

3-2

92

56

36

Louisiana Tech

0-0

2-1

91

56

35

Hawaii

0-1

1-3

87

53

34

Utah State

1-0

1-3

83

50

33

New Mexico State

0-0

1-2

82

51

31

Idaho

0-1

1-4

73

56

17

 

This Week’s Games–PiRate Ratings

Home Team in CAPS (N) Denotes Neutral Site

 

 

   

 

 

Tuesday, September 30  

 

 

Favorite Underdog

Pred. Spread

Approx. Score

Florida Atlantic MIDDLE TENNESSEE

2

28-26

   

 

 

Wednesday, October 1  

 

 

Favorite Underdog

Pred. Spread

Approx. Score

BOISE STATE Louisiana Tech

20

34-14

   

 

 

Thursday, October 2  

 

 

Favorite Underdog

Pred. Spread

Approx. Score

SOUTH FLORIDA Pittsburgh

21

35-14

Memphis U A B

4

24-20

UTAH Oregon St.

5

31-26

   

 

 

Friday, October 3  

 

 

Favorite Underdog

Pred. Spread

Approx. Score

B y u UTAH STATE

33

40-7

Cincinnati MARSHALL

10

27-17

   

 

 

Saturday, October 4  

 

 

Favorite Underdog

Pred. Spread

Approx. Score

Penn State PURDUE

17

38-21

GEORGIA TECH Duke

6

30-24

MICHIGAN ST. Iowa

11

31-20

MINNESOTA Indiana

10

38-28

Boston College N. C. STATE

10

28-18

WEST VIRGINIA Rutgers

12

31-19

Akron KENT ST.

3

30-27

Oklahoma BAYLOR

31

48-17

Florida ARKANSAS

29

46-17

Kansas IOWA ST.

20

27-17

VIRGINIA TECH Western Kentucky

31

41-10

U n l v COLORADO ST.

1

28-27

OLE MISS S. Carolina

1

24-23

WESTERN MICHIGAN Ohio U

9

26-17

NOTRE DAME Stanford

5

24-19

TULANE Army

17

31-14

ALABAMA Kentucky

14

24-10

Texas Tech KANSAS ST.

13

44-31

CALIFORNIA Arizona St.

3

27-24

MICHIGAN  Illinois

2

26-24

Temple MIAMI-OH

3

24-21

CENTRAL FLA. S m u

18

32-14

Florida St. MIAMI-FL

8

24-16

BOWLING GREEN Eastern Michigan

21

38-17

Navy AIR FORCE

3

20-17

Nevada IDAHO

20

48-28

Auburn VANDERBILT

4

21-17

T C U San Diego St.

29

35-6

OKLAHOMA ST. Texas A&M

24

34-10

NORTH CAROLINA Connecticut

1

28-27

Florida Int’l NORTH TEXAS

10

31-21

Maryland VIRGINIA

15

31-16

UL-MONROE UL-Lafayette

2

31-29

SOUTHERN MISS. U t e p

8

31-23

TENNESSEE Northern Illinois

20

34-14

Ball State TOLEDO

13

37-24

ARIZONA Washington

14

35-21

Texas  COLORADO 

13

34-21

SOUTHERN CAL Oregon

6

23-17

Ohio State WISCONSIN

4

24-20

TULSA Rice

16

45-29

Missouri NEBRASKA

20

37-17

NEW MEXICO Wyoming

5

28-23

FRESNO STATE Hawaii

25

38-13

U C L A Washington State

17

31-14

 

This Week’s Games–Mean Ratings

Home Team in CAPS (N) Denotes Neutral Site

 

   

 

Tuesday, September 30  

 

Favorite Underdog

Mean Prediction

Florida Atlantic MIDDLE TENNESSEE

27-21

   

 

Wednesday, October 1  

 

Favorite Underdog

Mean Prediction

BOISE STATE Louisiana Tech

31-7

   

 

Thursday, October 2  

 

Favorite Underdog

Mean Prediction

SOUTH FLORIDA Pittsburgh

27-13

Memphis U A B

28-23

UTAH Oregon St.

30-24

   

 

Friday, October 3  

 

Favorite Underdog

Mean Prediction

B y u UTAH STATE

31-3

Cincinnati MARSHALL

30-21

   

 

Saturday, October 4  

 

Favorite Underdog

Mean Prediction

Penn State PURDUE

35-21

GEORGIA TECH Duke

34-24

MICHIGAN ST. Iowa

28-19

MINNESOTA Indiana

35-24

Boston College N. C. STATE

31-20

WEST VIRGINIA Rutgers

40-24

Akron KENT ST.

27-21

Oklahoma BAYLOR

42-17

Florida ARKANSAS

30-10

Kansas IOWA ST.

30-17

VIRGINIA TECH Western Kentucky

34-7

U n l v COLORADO ST.

24-23

OLE MISS S. Carolina

26-24

WESTERN MICHIGAN Ohio U

36-27

NOTRE DAME Stanford

23-17

TULANE Army

30-10

ALABAMA Kentucky

24-12

Texas Tech KANSAS ST.

45-35

CALIFORNIA Arizona St.

38-28

MICHIGAN  Illinois

24-20

MIAMI-OH Temple

20-17

CENTRAL FLA. S m u

41-28

Florida St. MIAMI-FL

22-20

BOWLING GREEN Eastern Michigan

34-14

AIR FORCE Navy

34-26

Nevada IDAHO

44-24

Auburn VANDERBILT

20-20 to OT

T C U San Diego St.

35-7

OKLAHOMA ST. Texas A&M

35-13

NORTH CAROLINA Connecticut

16-14

Florida Int’l NORTH TEXAS

31-24

Maryland VIRGINIA

23-14

UL-MONROE UL-Lafayette

28-27

SOUTHERN MISS. U t e p

41-28

TENNESSEE Northern Illinois

28-16

Ball State TOLEDO

38-24

ARIZONA Washington

42-26

Texas  COLORADO 

31-20

SOUTHERN CAL Oregon

31-20

WISCONSIN Ohio State

21-20

TULSA Rice

50-35

Missouri NEBRASKA

34-27

NEW MEXICO Wyoming

30-20

FRESNO STATE Hawaii

42-24

U C L A Washington State

28-16

 

Ohio State (1-0/4-1) at Wisconsin (0-1/3-1)

Vegas:       Ohio State by 2½

PiRate:      Ohio State by 4

Mean:        Wisconsin by 1

Strategy:   None

The loser of this game is out of the BCS Bowl race for this season.  Wisconsin just plain choked last week at Michigan.  The two-point conversion fiasco at the end of the game can be chalked up to a problem with injuries at tight end.  Travis Beckham wasn’t supposed to play in this game, but when Garrett Graham left the game, Beckham was forced to play.  He acted like he wasn’t prepared on the two-point attempt, and I think he jumped offsides due to confusion.

 

Ohio State has not impressed me even after the insertion of Terrelle Pryor at quarterback.  Pryor has yet to face a decent pass defense, and he will this week.  Wisconsin will stack the front with seven and eight players inviting Pryor to prove he can pass the ball with consistency.  I can see him throwing a couple of interceptions to offset an excellent running effort by Beanie Wells and Pryor himself.  I look for Ohio State to run for 180 yards and pass for 150 with at least one interception.

 

Wisconsin will have to prove it can move the ball through the air for four quarters or else the Badgers will taste defeat for a second consecutive week.  The running game will struggle like it did for stretches of the Michigan game.

 

If Allen Evridge can get enough protection by his offensive line, he has a chance to pass for 200 yards in this game, but I am doubtful that the Wisconsin O-Line can provide adequate protection against the Buckeye pass rush.

 

I look for the Badgers to run for 150 yards and pass for 175 yards.  That will be enough to win if the Wisconsin defense sets up one score with an interception and return.  The two ratings disagree on the outcome, and I cannot break the tie.  It will be close like last week.

 

 

Auburn (2-1/4-1) at Vanderbilt (2-0/4-0)

Vegas: Auburn by 4½

PiRate: Auburn by 4

Mean: Pick

Strategy: None

They don’t play every year, but they have played 12 times in the last 30 years.  Auburn has won all 12 games.  The last time Vanderbilt beat Auburn was on December 31, 1955, in the Gator Bowl.  The last time Vanderbilt beat Auburn in the regular season was September 30, 1950, when the Commodores won 41-0 (That Auburn team went 0-10, while Vandy went 7-4 and had the future number one pick in the NFL draft in Bill Wade).  You have to go back to November of 1913 to find the last time these teams played in the regular when this much was on the line.  A 7-1 Vanderbilt team beat a 6-0 Auburn team that day 17-0.

 

If the Commodores can defeat the only SEC team they have not beaten in modern day football, then they have an outside chance to compete for the SEC East Title.  With Georgia and Florida all of a sudden looking vulnerable and with Vandy missing both Alabama and LSU from the West, there is a chance that 6-2 could get them a piece of the East crown.

 

As Lee Corso will say at Vandy’s campus this week, “Not so fast my friend.”  This is a Commodore team that has won with little offense and opportunistic defense.  In their most recent win at Ole Miss, the Rebels outgained them by more than 100 yards only to lose two prime scoring chances.  Vandy scored one of its two touchdowns on a long interception return.

 

I believe Auburn will not allow the Commodores to win with defense or special teams in this game.  In the past, the Tigers have played conservative, no nonsense football against Vandy and won with better talent in the trenches.  I believe the same will hold true this year.  Auburn has superior talent where 95% of all games are decided-the interior lines.  The offensive and defensive lines are the equivalent of the pitcher in baseball.  Auburn has the better rotation and bullpen in this game, and they will win this game in a boring fashion.  Look for the Tigers to rush for close to 200 yards and pass for just over 125.  Vandy will rush for 100-130 yards and pass for another 100-130.  It adds up to a 4-10 point win for Auburn in the neighborhood of 21-13.

 

Games Against The Spread

 

As I have told you previously, I am no longer devoting much time to teams other than Wisconsin and their opponent and Vanderbilt and their opponent.  You can read prior blogs that explain in detail why I am concentrating on the NFL and not following college football like I have in the past.  So, I cannot really recommend plays against the spread for college games. 

 

If you want my official recommendations on the NFL games, come by Friday afternoon (around 5 PM Central Time) and you can read my ideas on every game on the schedule.  I have succeeded in pulling off winning weekends all four weeks to date.  Even with all the surprise games in week four, going into the Monday night game, I hit on 67% of my selections and sit at 68% for the year for a nice return on investment.

 

For those who must look at the PiRate and Mean ratings to help you make your selections, here is my advice:  Select games in which both the PiRate and Mean ratings agree on the side against the spread and the difference in BOTH spreads is 3 or more points.  Then, group those games in threes and play a 10-point teaser parlay for each triplet.

 

For example, if the line on a game is Team A by 7 points, then it becomes a possibility if both the PiRate and Mean ratings say the spread if Team A by 10 or more points or Team A by 4 or less points (or Team B by anything).  With this game, you would then make it Team A +3 if the ratings pick them by 10 or more, or Team B +17 if the ratings say Team A by 4 or less.  You must play a 3-game parlay for each 10-point teaser, and your odds should be 10-12.

 

Good luck, and remember, I won’t lose a penny, since I don’t wager.  You shouldn’t use my ratings to lose your weekly paycheck.

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