The Pi-Rate Ratings

November 11, 2014

PiRate Ratings College Football Playoffs and Bowl Projections

The College Football Playoff Committee had a couple of surprises in their release of their rankings Tuesday night, when they moved Oregon ahead of Florida State and TCU ahead of Alabama.

The Crimson Tide will move into the top four next week, possibly jumping the rest of the field to number one if they shellac Mississippi State this weekend. Of course, a loss to the Bulldogs probably puts Alabama into the Orange Bowl or even Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl, depending on what happens in the Iron Bowl.

The sixth-ranked Arizona State Sun Devils sit pretty as well. If ASU wins out, which is a tough if with a home finale at Arizona needing to be won before a Pac-12 Championship Game against Oregon, they will most certainly be one of the top four.

Ohio State and Baylor need a lot of help, and Nebraska and Duke are one-loss teams with no chance at making it to the playoffs.

The race for the best Group of Five team and recipient of a Big Six bowl invitation is a three-team race between Marshall, Colorado State, and Boise State. The Rams have been moving up every week, but it with New Mexico and Air Force left on the schedule, CSU cannot leapfrog over an undefeated Marshall team.

Here is our bowl outlook per conference. Note, that this outlook was written before Tuesday night’s games were played.

Note: Records shown are projected final regular season records, with conference record followed by total record.

Group of Five

American Athletic Conference
Memphis won at Temple last week, and the Tigers now have the championship in their site. Cincinnati, East Carolina, and Central Florida are still in contention, while Houston suffered a big loss at Tulane.

Since the champion of this league is not guaranteed any particular bowl, the probably bowl teams are merely playing for the trophy. The bowl bids will go to the teams that make the most sense for each bowl.

With Temple’s loss last week, the Owls are likely looking at being left out of the bowl picture unless they upset Penn State or Cincinnati.

1. Birmingham Bowl: Memphis 7-1/9-3 (vs. Florida)
2. St. Petersburg Bowl: Central Florida 6-2/8-4 (vs. Miami)
3. Miami Beach Bowl: Cincinnati 7-1/9-3 (vs. BYU)
4. Military Bowl: East Carolina 6-2/9-3 (vs. Virginia Tech)
5. Armed Forces Bowl: Houston 5-3/7-5 (vs. South Alabama [at-large])

Also Bowl Eligible: Temple 4-4/6-6

Conference USA
Marshall will get a bit of a test at home this week against a hot Rice team, and they could have a trap game at UAB a week later, but the Thundering Herd appears to be somewhat safe in getting into the CUSA Championship Game with a 12-0 record. Louisiana Tech could be a tough opponent, but MU should be able to sneak by and earn a Big Six Bowl bid. One loss will probably doom those chances.

Louisiana Tech must get by Rice on November 29 to win the West Division, but that game is in Ruston, so the Bulldogs will be a hefty favorite.

1. Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl: Marshall 8-0/13-0 (vs. Michigan St.)
2. Hawaii Bowl: Louisiana Tech 8-0/9-4 (vs. Utah St.)
3. Bahamas Bowl: Rice 5-3/7-5 (vs. Toledo)
4. Boca Raton Bowl: Middle Tennessee 6-2/7-5 (vs. Northern Illinois)
5. New Mexico Bowl: U T E P 5-3/7-5 (vs. Air Force)
6. Heart of Dallas Bowl: Western Kentucky 3-5/6-6 (vs. Michigan)
7. Independence Bowl (at-large): U A B 4-4/6-6 (vs. North Carolina)

Mid-American Conference
Reminder: This review was written prior to kickoff of the two MAC games Tuesday night.

The MAC is out of the Big Six Bowl picture this year. The Toledo-Northern Illinois winner will still be too far behind the other contenders from the AAC, CUSA, and Mountain West.

As of this writing, it looks like seven MAC teams will be bowl eligible, but only five teams will receive invitations.

1. Bahamas Bowl: Toledo 8-0/10-3 (vs. Rice)
2. Boca Raton Bowl: Northern Illinois 5-3/8-4 (vs. Middle Tennessee)
3. Famous Idaho Potato Bowl: Bowling Green 6-2/8-5 (vs. Nevada)
4. Camellia Bowl: Central Michigan 6-2/8-4 (vs. Texas St.)
5. GoDaddy.com Bowl: Western Michigan 6-2/8-4 (vs. Louisiana-Lafayette)

Also Bowl Eligible: Akron 5-3/7-5 & Ohio 4-4/6-6

Mountain West Conference
Boise State and Colorado State are two MWC teams that nobody in a Power Five conference wants to play at this point. The Broncos and Rams are capable of defeating a 9-3 team from any of the big conferences.

All of the strength in this league lies in the Mountain Division, as the West Division should be won with a 5-3 conference mark, while three from the other division will be 6-2 or better. With the top two teams headed to possible 11-win seasons, this league deserves better bowl destinations, but they probably will not get them.

1. Las Vegas Bowl: Boise St. 7-1/11-2 (vs. Stanford)
2. Poinsettia Bowl: Colorado St. 7-1/11-1 (vs. Navy)
3. Hawaii Bowl: Utah St. 6-2/9-4 (vs. Louisiana Tech)
4. New Mexico Bowl: Air Force 4-4/8-4 (vs. UTEP)
5. New Orleans Bowl: San Diego St. 5-3/7-5 (vs. Arkansas St.)
6. Famous Idaho Potato Bowl: Nevada 5-3/8-5 (vs. Bowling Green)

Sunbelt Conference
We erred in recent weeks. Georgia Southern is not eligible for a bowl this season unless there are not enough FBS teams bowl eligible. There will be more than enough, so GSU is playing simply for the pride of becoming co-champs of the SBC.

Louisiana-Lafayette figures to be the other co-champ, and the Ragin’ Cajuns have been to the New Orleans bowl so many years in a row, the Sports Information Department in Lafayette can almost place this game on the schedule on their media guide.

Because we believe ULL would like to go somewhere else this year, we are placing them in another bowl.

1. GoDaddy.com Bowl: Louisiana-Lafayette 8-0/9-3 (vs. Western Michigan)
2. New Orleans Bowl: Arkansas St. 6-2/8-4 (vs. San Diego St.)
3. Camellia Bowl: Texas St. 5-3/7-5 (vs. Central Michigan)
4. Armed Forces Bowl (at-large): South Alabama 5-3/6-6 (vs. Houston)

Independents (not including Notre Dame)
BYU is a lock to become bowl eligible, while Navy should get there as well. Army is not yet eliminated from bowl eligibility, but the Black Knights must eliminate Western Kentucky from bowl eligibility this week, or else the season will end against Navy.

1. Miami Beach Bowl: B Y U 7-5 (vs. Cincinnati)
2. Poinsettia Bowl: Navy 7-5 (vs. Colorado St.)

The Power Five Conferences
Atlantic Coast Conference
Florida State looks less and less impressive every week, and another poor first half performance this week against Miami could be too difficult to overcome. The Seminoles falling to number three in the Playoff rankings should wake the team up, and FSU could go out and play their best game of the season this weekend.

Duke is not getting any respect at 8-1, and even ACC pundits believe Virginia Tech could upset the Blue Devils this week.

Clemson remains in contention for a Big Six Bowl, but if Duke goes 11-2, the Tigers will have to settle for the best of the rest.

Virginia, Syracuse, and Wake Forest figure to miss out on bowls, while the loser of this week’s North Carolina-Pittsburgh game will probably join that trio.

1. PLAYOFFS—Rose Bowl: Florida St. 8-0/13-0 (vs. Mississippi St.)
2. Orange Bowl: Duke 7-1/11-2 (vs. Ohio St.)
3. Russell Athletic Bowl: Clemson 7-1/10-2 (vs. Kansas St.)
4. Gator Bowl: Notre Dame 9-3 (vs. Ole Miss)
5. Belk Bowl: Georgia Tech 5-3/8-4 (vs. LSU)
6. Sun Bowl: Louisville 5-3/8-4 (vs. Arizona)
7. Pinstripe Bowl: Boston College 4-4/7-5 (vs. Rutgers)
8. Military Bowl: Virginia Tech 3-5/6-6 (vs. East Carolina)
9. Independence Bowl: North Carolina 4-4/6-6 (vs. UAB [at-large])
10. Quick Lane Bowl: North Carolina St. 2-6/6-6 (vs. Illinois)
11. St. Petersburg Bowl: Miami 5-3/8-4 (vs. Central Florida)

Big Ten Conference
Ohio State might be a contender for national champion if they had not fallen to a mediocre Virginia Tech team. We believe the Buckeyes are strong enough today to compete against any of the four top teams.

If Michigan State wins out to finish 10-2, the Spartans should be in good shape for a Big Six bowl. If Sparty falls again, then either Nebraska or Wisconsin could sneak into the bonanza.

If Nebraska goes 10-2, the Cornhuskers could bully their way over many others into a Big Six Bowl.

Michigan is now just one win away from bowl eligibility, and the Wolverines must beat Maryland to get that bid, because upsetting Ohio State does not look possible. So, this Saturday’s game with the Terps could be Brady Hoke’s last win in Ann Arbor.

Illinois is just 4-5 with three games to go, but we believe the Illini will win two more games to give this league 11 bowl eligible teams.

1. Orange Bowl: Ohio St. 8-0/12-1 (vs. Duke)
2. Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl: Michigan St. 7-1/10-2 (vs. Marshall)
3. Cotton Bowl: Nebraska 6-2/10-2 (vs. TCU)
4. Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl: Wisconsin 7-1/10-3 (vs. Auburn)
5. Outback Bowl: Iowa 4-4/7-5 (vs. Georgia)
6. Holiday Bowl: Minnesota 4-4/7-5 (vs. USC)
7. Music City Bowl: Penn St. 2-6/6-6 (vs. Tennessee)
8. San Francisco Bowl: Maryland 4-4/7-5 (vs. Washington)
9. Pinstripe Bowl: Rutgers 2-6/6-6 (vs. Boston College)
10. Quick Lane Bowl: Illinois 3-5/6-6 (vs. North Carolina St.)
11. Heart of Dallas Bowl: Michigan 4-4/6-6 (vs. Western Kentucky)

Big 12 Conference
TCU has moved into the top four of the most recent rankings, and we believe the Horned Frogs will win out to finish 11-1, but we do not have TCU in our playoff predictions. We also believe Baylor will finish 11-1 and not get into the playoffs. Alabama can beat Mississippi State and Auburn to win the SEC West, and then after dismissing Florida in the SEC Championship Game, the Tide could actually end up ranked number one. Losing on the road against the top team would not be enough to drop Mississippi State out of the playoff race, and if Oregon and Florida State keep winning, we believe TCU will be the team falling out of the top four.

We have moved Texas into the bowl probables at the expense of Oklahoma State. Texas Tech, Iowa State, and Kansas are not in the picture.

1. Cotton Bowl: T C U 8-1/11-1 (vs. Nebraska)
2. Fiesta Bowl: Baylor 8-1/11-1 (vs. Arizona St.)
3. Alamo Bowl: Oklahoma 6-3/9-3 (vs. UCLA)
4. Russell Athletic Bowl: Kansas St. 7-2/9-3 (vs. Clemson)
5. Liberty Bowl: West Virginia 5-4/7-5 (vs. Missouri)
6. Cactus Bowl: Texas 5-4/6-6 (vs. Utah)

Pac-12 Conference
Arizona State’s win over Notre Dame was a shot in the arm for the entire conference. If the Sun Devils don’t overlook a weakening Oregon State team in Corvallis and then take care of business against Washington State, the regular season finale at Arizona will be the most important game for this team since the 1997 Rose Bowl or 1975 Fiesta Bowl.

Arizona State is not automatically going to win the Pac-12 South. UCLA, USC, and Arizona still have shots to get into the conference championship game.

In the North, Oregon is already assured of the division title, and if they win out, they will get a chance to play for the national title for the second time in five seasons.

We have dropped Oregon State from the bowl probable list this week. The Beavers would have to win two out of their final three to get to 6-6, and their final three come against Arizona State, Washington, and Oregon. We believe 0-3 is likely.

1. PLAYOFFS—Sugar Bowl: Oregon 8-1/12-1 (vs. Alabama)
2. Fiesta Bowl: Arizona St. 8-1/11-2 (vs. Baylor)
3. Alamo Bowl: U C L A 7-2/10-2 (vs. Oklahoma)
4. Holiday Bowl: U S C 6-3/8-4 (vs. Minnesota)
5. San Francisco Bowl: Washington 4-5/8-5 (vs. Maryland)
6. Sun Bowl: Arizona 6-3/9-3 (vs. Louisville)
7. Las Vegas Bowl: Stanford 5-4/7-5 (vs. Boise St.)
8. Cactus Bowl: Utah 4-5/7-5 (vs. Texas)
9. Texas Bowl (at-large): California 3-6/6-6 (vs. Texas A&M)

Southeastern Conference
If Alabama wins this week against Mississippi State, which we believe they will, and if Mississippi State recovers to beat Ole Miss, while the Crimson Tide beat Auburn and win the SEC Championship Game, we cannot see how the committee cannot take both teams.

Nobody else in the league has a chance to sneak into the top four without about seven or eight other teams losing. Auburn and LSU played their way out of the tournament last week, while Georgia did so the week before.

Kentucky was once 5-1 and looking like a lock to make it to a bowl game for the first time in four seasons. But, four consecutive losses have UK at 5-5 with Tennessee and Louisville remaining on the schedule. We have the Wildcats out.

South Carolina must beat either Florida or Clemson to earn a bowl bid, and we do not see the Gamecocks doing so.

1. PLAYOFFS—Sugar Bowl: Alabama 7-1/12-1 (vs. Oregon)
2. PLAYOFFS—Rose Bowl: Mississippi State 7-1/11-1 (vs. Florida St.)
3. Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl: Auburn 5-3/9-3 (vs. Wisconsin)
4. Outback Bowl: Georgia 5-3/9-3 (vs. Iowa)
5. Gator Bowl: Ole Miss 5-3/9-3 (vs. Notre Dame)
6. Belk Bowl: L S U 5-3/9-3 (vs. Georgia Tech)
7. Texas Bowl: Texas A&M 4-4/8-4 (vs. California [at-large])
8. Liberty Bowl: Missouri 5-3/8-4 (vs. West Virginia)
9. Music City Bowl: Tennessee 4-4/7-5 (Penn St.)
10. Birmingham Bowl: Florida 5-3/7-5 (vs. Memphis)

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March 12, 2011

NCAA Basketball Conference Tournaments–March 12 Update

Bucknell Joins The Dance Party

The Bucknell Bison earned the Patriot League’s automatic bid Friday with a 72-54 victory over Lafayette.  Versatile big man Mike Muscala led the Bison with 18 points while sharpshooter Bryson Johnson added 15.

 

Bucknell improved to 25-8 on the season.  They project to be a 12 or 13-seed.

 

12 More Bids To Go Out Saturday

 

This is the busiest day of the tournament schedule.  13 conferences will crown their champion, and four other conferences will conduct semifinal rounds.  All told, every single one of the 21 games scheduled will be televised nationally.  Do you have enough televisions and a good high-speed computer?

 

Here is a conference-by-conference look at all the action.

 

All Game Times EST

 

Atlantic Coast Conference—Greensboro, NC

Quarterfinal Round

#1 North Carolina  61  #9 Miami  59

#4 Clemson  70  #5 Boston College  47

#2 Duke  87  #7 Maryland  71

#6 Virginia Tech  52  #3 Florida State  51 

 

Semifinal Round

#1 North Carolina (25-6)  vs. #4 Clemson (21-10)  1:30 PM  ESPN 

#2 Duke (28-4)  vs. #6 Virginia Tech (21-11)  3:45 PM  ESPN

 

All four teams are safely in the NCAA Tournament.  The Hokies secured a spot in the Dance with the nail-biting win over the Seminoles.

 

America East Conference

Championship Round

#5 Stony Brook (15-16)  at #2 Boston U (20-13)  12 Noon  ESPN2

 

Boston U won both regular season meetings.  The Terriers won 67-62 at home and 62-49 on the road.  They win with their defense, as they only shoot 40.6% from the field.

 

Atlantic 10 Conference—Atlantic City, NJ

Quarterfinal Round

#9 Dayton  68  #1 Xavier  67

#12 St. Joseph’s  93  #4 Duquesne  90  ot

#2 Temple  96  #10 LaSalle  76

#3 Richmond  55  #6 Rhode Island 45

 

Semifinal Round

#9 Dayton (21-12)  vs. #12 St. Joseph’s (11-21)  1 PM  CBS College

#2 Temple (25-6)  vs. #3 Richmond (24-7)  3:30 PM  CBS College

 

The Bubble teams will have to sweat it out all the way until Sunday.  At least one long shot will advance to the Championship Game.  Neither St. Joe’s nor Dayton is getting an at-large bid, and one of the two will be playing for an automatic bid Sunday.  Both Temple and Richmond are in the Dance.

 

Big 12 Conference—Kansas City

Semifinal Round

#1 Kansas  90  #5 Colorado  83

#2 Texas  70  #3 Texas A&M  58

 

Championship Game

#1 Kansas (31-2)  vs. #2 Texas (27-6)  6 PM  ESPN

 

The Jayhawks are still playing for the overall number one seed, while Texas is probably locked in on a number two seed.  However, with Notre Dame losing, a Longhorn win could put them in the conversation, especially if Duke does not win the ACC Tournament.

 

Big East Conference—New York City

Semifinal Round

#9 Connecticut  76  #4 Syracuse  71  ot

#3 Louisville 83  #2 Notre Dame  77  ot 

 

Championship Game

#3 Louisville (25-8)  vs. #9 Connecticut (25-9)  9 PM  ESPN

 

Connecticut becomes the first team ever to play five games in five days in modern college basketball history.  Will they have anything left in the tank next week when it really counts?  Louisville’s win more than likely killed any chance for the Irish getting a number one seed in the NCAA Tournament.

 

Big Ten Conference—Indianapolis

Quarterfinal Round

#1 Ohio State  67  #8 Northwestern  61 ot

#4 Michigan  60  #5 Illinois  55

#7 Michigan State  74  #2 Purdue  56

#6 Penn State  36  #3 Wisconsin 33

 

Semifinal Round

#1 Ohio State (30-2)  vs. #4 Michigan (20-12)  1:40 PM  CBS

#6 Penn State (18-13)  vs. #7 Michigan State (19-13)  4 PM  CBS

 

Michigan State has now earned a spot in the NCAA Tournament.  Penn State might move from the Bubble to in the tournament with a win over the Spartans.

 

Big West Conference—Anaheim

Semifinal Round

#1 Long Beach State  74  #7 UC-Riverside  63

#5 UC-Santa Barbara 83  #3 Cal State Northridge 63

 

Championship Game

#1 Long Beach State (22-10)  vs. #5 UC-Santa Barbara (17-13)  8 PM  ESPN2

 

Long Beach State won both meetings against the Gauchos in the regular season, and neither game was close.  The 49ers are not going to become another Butler or even repeat the exploits of Northern Iowa last year, but they could scare a favored team in the first round.  If UCSB wins, then they will make a quick exit in the first round.

 

Conference USA—El Paso, TX

Semifinal Round

#4 Memphis  76  #8 East Carolina  56

#3 U T E P  66  #2 Tulsa  54

 

Championship Game

#3 UTEP (25-8)  vs. #4 Memphis (24-9)  11:30 AM  CBS

 

The host Miners blew Memphis off the floor 74-47 in their only regular season meeting.  That game took place on this court.

 

Ivy League Playoff

Harvard (23-5)  vs. Princeton (24-6)  at Yale University  4 PM  ESPN3.com 

 

If Princeton wins a close game, there is an outside chance that the Ivy League could get two bids.

 

Mid-American Conference—Cleveland

Semifinal Round

#6 Akron  79  #2 Western Michigan  68

#1 Kent State 79  #4 Ball State 68

 

Championship Game

#1 Kent State (23-10)  vs. #6 Akron (22-12)  6 PM  ESPN2

 

The winner goes dancing, while the loser can only hope for a trip to Madison Square Garden in late March.

 

M E A C—Winston-Salem, NC

Semifinal Round

#4 Morgan State  61  #1 Bethune-Cookman  48

#2 Hampton  85  #6 Norfolk State  61

 

Championship Game

#2 Hampton (23-8)  vs. #4 Morgan State (17-13)  2 PM  ESPN2

 

Morgan State goes for a four-peat.  The Bears beat Hampton in the regular season 78-72.

 

Mountain West Conference—Las Vegas

Semifinal Round

#1 B Y U  87  #5 New Mexico  76

#2 San Diego State  74  #3 UNLV 72

 

Championship Game

#1 B Y U  (30-3)  vs. #2 San Diego State (31-2)  7 PM  Versus

 

Is the third time the charm for San Diego State?  The Aztecs’ two losses were to the Cougars.  If they can hold Jimmer Fredette under 35 points, we have a feeling that SDSU will cut down the nets. 

 

Both teams are legitimate threats to make it to the Sweet 16 and possibly a round or two farther.

 

Pac-10 Conference—Los Angeles

Semifinal Round

#1 Arizona  67  #4 Southern Cal  62

#3 Washington 69  #7 Oregon 51

 

Championship Game

#1 Arizona (27-6)  vs. #3 Washington (22-10)  6 PM  CBS

 

This should be an exciting game, even though it will not greatly affect the NCAA Tournament seedings.

 

The two teams split the season series, but the Huskies came close to sweeping.  UW won by 17 at home and fell by a single point in Tucson.  We think this is a tossup game.

 

Southeastern Conference—Atlanta

Quarterfinal Round

1W  Alabama 65  4E Georgia 59  ot

2E  Kentucky  75  3W  Ole Miss 66

1E  Florida  85  5E  Tennessee  74

3E  Vanderbilt  87  2W  Mississippi State  81

 

Semifinal Round

1W  Alabama (21-10)  vs. 2E  Kentucky (23-8)  1 PM  ABC

1E  Florida (25-6)  vs.  3E  Vanderbilt (23-9)  3:30 PM  ABC

 

Alabama played themselves into position to get one of the final at-large bids.  The Crimson Tide fans need to route against a Dayton or St. Joseph’s tournament championship in the Atlantic 10, because there is still little room for error for ‘Bama.

 

Kentucky looks unstoppable at times and then looks like a team that doesn’t belong in the tournament at others.  That’s what you get with a bunch of underclassmen and with no depth.

 

We believe this game will be close for most of the day, but the Wildcats will enjoy one nice spurt in both halves to hold off the Tide by six to 12 points.

 

Florida is playing about as well as either of their two National Champion teams.  It is hard to stop a team with five guys capable of scoring 20 points.  The Gators’ have few weaknesses.

 

Vanderbilt is a lot like Florida, but not as talented.  The Commodores have excellent outside shooters, but they cannot create their own shot like Florida’s outside shooters.  They have a couple of excellent inside scorers, but they can disappear against Florida’s inside players.  We look for the Gators to dominate this one from the beginning and win by double digits.

 

Southland Conference—Katy, TX

Championship Game

#1 McNeese State (21-10)  vs. #7 UT-San Antonio (18-13)  4 PM  ESPN2

 

S W A C—Garland, TX

Semifinal Round

#4 Alabama State  73  #1 Texas Southern  66

#6 Grambling  81  #2 Jackson State  75  ot

 

Championship Game

#4 Alabama State (16-17)  vs. #6 Grambling (12-20)  8:30 PM  ESPNU

 

The winner of this game can definitely plan on heading to Dayton for a First Four game.

 

W A C—Las Vegas

Semifinal Round

#1 Utah State  58  #8 San Jose State  54

#2 Boise State 81  #3 New Mexico State  63

 

Championship Game

#1 Utah State (29-3)  vs. #2 Boise State (20-11) 10 PM  ESPN2

 

Utah State is definitely in the Dance, so if the Broncos can pull off the big upset, another bubble will burst somewhere else.

 

Note: St. Mary’s defeated Weber State Friday night 77-54 in a non-conference game that was scheduled only two months ago.  The Gaels appear to be safe as an at-large team.

March 11, 2011

NCAA Basketball Conference Tournaments–March 11 Update

Patriot League Championship—4:45 PM EST On ESPN2

#6 Lafayette (13-18)  at #1 Bucknell (24-8)

 

Lafayette makes an appearance in the conference championship game for the second consecutive year.  The Leopards fell to rival Lehigh last season and were tabbed the best team in the league in the preseason.  They took a step backward and tumbled to sixth in the league.

 

Bucknell closed 2010 with an 8-2 finish and returned all five starters and most of their key reserves.  The Bison continued to play top-notch ball and ran away with the Patriot League title.  Bucknell is on fire, having won nine games in a row by an average of 72-60 and 22 of their last 24 games.

 

The Bison swept the series against their Keystone State rival, winning 75-56 in Lewisburg and 74-69 in overtime at Easton.  Tonight’s game is on the West Branch of the Susquehanna River, so Bucknell will enjoy the home court advantage.

 

In the earlier game in Lewisburg, Bucknell began the second half of a close game by going on a 20-3 run to put the game out of reach.  The Bison held Lafayette to 37% shooting and controlled the boards by 14.  In the game at Lafayette, Bucknell led 61-50 with four and a half minutes to go, but the Bison did not score another point in regulation.  Lafayette scored 11 consecutive points to force overtime and then briefly took a 64-61 lead at the start of the extra period.  The Leopards shot under 40% again and were outrebounded once again.

 

Bucknell goes just seven-deep, and all seven contribute to the offense.  Muscular big man Mike Muscala leads the way with 14.8 points and 7.5 rebounds per game.  The 6-11 Muscala has recorded six double-doubles in the last 15 games.  Bryson Johnson is an excellent long-range shooter, and he shoots 47% from three-point range.  As a team, Bucknell shoots 40.6% from behind the arc.

 

Lafayette led the entire game at Holy Cross in the conference tournament quarterfinal.  The Leopards placed five players in double figure scoring, and they stole the ball nine times to knock off the Crusaders.  In the semifinal round at number two seed American, the Leopards trailed by two points in the final seconds when Jim Mower buried a three-pointer as the clock expired to seal a double overtime victory.

 

If the Leopards are to pull off the big upset and advance to a First Four game in Dayton next week, big man Jared Mintz will have to neutralize Muscala.  Mintz gives away two inches in height, but he has the power to hold his own inside.  Mintz leads the Leopards with a 15.8 point scoring average and 5.8 rebound average.  Mower averages 12.4 points per game.

 

Thursday’s Results And Friday’s Games With NCAA Tournament Repercussions

All Times EST

Atlantic Coast Conference—Greensboro, NC

1st Round

#9 Miami  69  #8 Virginia  62

#5 Boston College  81  #12 Wake Forest  67

#7 Maryland  75  #10 North Carolina State  67

#6 Virginia Tech  59  #11 Georgia Tech  43

 

Quarterfinal Round

#9 Miami (19-13)  vs. #1 North Carolina (24-6)  12 Noon  ESPN2

#5 Boston College (20-11)  vs. #4 Clemson (20-10)  Approx. 2:15 PM  ESPN2

#7 Maryland (19-13)  vs. #2 Duke (27-4)  7 PM  ESPN2

#6 Virginia Tech (20-10)  vs. #3 Florida State (21-9)  Approx. 9:15 PM  ESPN2

 

North Carolina, Duke, Florida State, Clemson, and Boston College are in.  Virginia Tech, Maryland, and Miami are on the bubble.  Miami and Maryland must win today, or they are NIT-bound.  Virginia Tech is in a near must-win situation.  They are on the middle of the bubble.

 

Atlantic 10 Conference—Atlantic City, NJ

No Games Played Thursday

Quarterfinal Round

#9 Dayton (20-12)  vs. #1 Xavier (24-6)  12 Noon  CBS College

#12 St. Joseph’s (10-21)  vs. #4 Duquesne (18-11)  2:30 PM  CBS College

#10 LaSalle (15-17)  vs. #2 Temple (24-6)  6:30 PM  CBS College

#6 Rhode Island (19-12)  vs. #3 Richmond (24-7)  9 PM  CBS College

 

Xavier, Temple, and Richmond are in.  Duquesne must win the tournament to get in, so the bubble teams will be pulling for Dayton or Xavier to stop them in the semifinals.  Keep an eye on Rhode Island.  The Rams are capable of upsetting Richmond and Temple to get to the finals.

 

Big 12 Conference—Kansas City

Quarterfinal Round

#1 Kansas  53  #9 Oklahoma State  52

#5 Colorado  87  #4 Kansas State  75

#2 Texas  74  #10 Oklahoma  54

#3 Texas A&M  86  #6 Missouri  71

 

Semifinal Round

#1 Kansas (30-2)  vs. #5 Colorado (21-12)  7 PM

#2 Texas (26-6)  vs. #3 Texas A&M (24-7)  9:30 PM

 

Kansas, Texas, Texas A&M, Missouri, Kansas State, and Colorado are in.  The Buffalos secured their bid yesterday, so the rest of this tournament is all about the seedings.

 

Big East Conference—New York City

Quarterfinal Round

#9 Connecticut  76  #1 Pittsburgh  74

#4 Syracuse  79  #5 St. John’s  73

#2 Notre Dame  89  #7 Cincinnati  51

#3 Louisville  81  #11 Marquette  56

 

Semifinal Round

#9 Connecticut (24-9)  vs. #4 Syracuse (26-6)  7 PM  ESPN

#2 Notre Dame (26-5)  vs. #3 Louisville (24-8)  Approx. 9:15 PM  ESPN

 

11, yes 11, teams will receive invitations Sunday evening.  This is the strongest league not just this year, but maybe since the Big East placed three teams in the Final Four in 1985.  This should be a great finish to the tournament, and Notre Dame has a chance to move to a number one seed if the Irish win it.  Any one of these four could still be playing in late March.

 

Big Ten Conference—Indianapolis

1st Round

#8 Northwestern  75  #9 Minnesota  65

#7 Michigan State  66  #10 Iowa  61

#6 Penn State  61  #11 Indiana  55

 

Quarterfinal Round

#1 Ohio State (29-2)  vs. #8 Northwestern (18-12) 12 Noon  ESPN

#4 Michigan (19-12)  vs. #5 Illinois (19-12)  Approx 2:20  ESPN

#2 Purdue (25-6)  vs. #7 Michigan State (18-13)  6:30 PM  Big Ten Network

#3 Wisconsin (23-7)  vs. #6 Penn State (17-13)  Approx. 8:45  Big Ten Network

 

Ohio State, Purdue, Wisconsin, Michigan, and Illinois are in.  Michigan State can definitely punch a ticket with an upset over Purdue today, and they are still on the highest part of the bubble if they lose.  Northwestern and Penn State must win the tournament to get in, although the Nittany Lions could get in the discussion with a loss in the finals.  We would not be all that surprised if the Wildcats play Ohio State a close game, at least for 30 to 32 minutes.

 

Big West Conference—Anaheim

Quarterfinal Round

#1 Long Beach State 79  #8 UC-Irvine  72

#5 UC-Santa Barbara  79  #4 Pacific  67

#7 UC-Riverside  70  #2 Cal Poly  66  ot

#3 Cal State Northridge  75  #6 Cal State Fullerton  54

 

Semifinal Round

#1 Long Beach State (21-10)  vs. #5 UC-Santa Barbara (16-13)  9:30 PM  ESPNU

#3 Cal State Northridge (14-17)  vs. #7 UC-Riverside (12-18)  12 Midnight  ESPNU

 

The champion is the only team that will advance.  Long Beach State has a minimal at best chance of winning a first round game if they are the champion.

 

Conference USA—El Paso, TX

Quarterfinal Round

#8 East Carolina  75  #1 U A B  70  ot

#4 Memphis  66  #5 Southern Miss.  63

#3 U T E P  77  #6 Marshall  65

#2 Tulsa  81  #7 Rice  72

 

Semifinal Round

#2 Tulsa (19-12)  vs. #3 U T E P  (24-8)  3 PM 

#4 Memphis (23-9)  vs. #8 East Carolina (18-14)  5:30 PM

 

At this point, no team is guaranteed a spot in the Big Dance.  UAB played their way to the bottom half of the bubble with a loss to ECU.  Memphis and UTEP could possibly get into the conversation if they both advance to the championship game.  For now, we are projecting just the champion to make it into the tournament.  The host Miners enjoy a large home court advantage and should top Tulsa in a thriller today.

 

Mid-American Conference—Cleveland

Quarterfinal Round

#2 Western Michigan 67  #7 Bowling Green  56

#6 Akron  82  #3 Miami (O)  75  2ot

#1 Kent State  73  #8 Buffalo  62

#4 Ball State  76  #5 Ohio U  73  ot

 

Semifinal Round

#2 Western Michigan (20-11)  vs. #6 Akron (21-12)  7 PM

#1 Kent State (22-10)  vs. #4 Ball State (19-12)  9:30 PM

 

The MAC has been down in recent years, but the eventual champion of this tournament could be a formidable opponent as a number 13 or 14 seed for a better team in the first round. 

 

M E A C—Winston-Salem, NC

Quarterfinal Round

#4 Morgan State  77  #5 North Carolina A&T  59

#6 Norfolk State  55  #3 Coppin State 53

 

Semifinal Round

#1 Bethune-Cookman (21-11)  vs. #4 Morgan State (16-13)  6 PM

#2 Hampton (22-8) vs. #6 Norfolk State (12-19)  Approx. 8:15 PM

 

These teams are playing for a probable spot in the First Four.  The first semifinal will be a thriller; the top-seeded Wildcats face the three-time defending champion Bears.

 

Hampton has been a surprise team, and they should have an easier contest and be more rested for the championship.

 

Mountain West Conference—Las Vegas

Quarterfinal Round

#1 B Y U  64  #9 T C U  58

#5 New Mexico  67  #4 Colorado State 61

#2 San Diego State  64  #7 Utah  50

#3 U N L V  69  #6 Air Force 53

 

Semifinal Round

#1 B Y U (29-3)  vs. #5 New Mexico (21-11)  9 PM  CBS College

#2 San Diego State (30-2)  vs. #3 U N L V  (24-7)  11:30 PM  CBS College

 

BYU, San Diego State, and UNLV are in.  Colorado State played themselves into the NIT with the loss yesterday to New Mexico.  As for the Lobos, with a third win over BYU today, they could get into the conversation, but they probably need to earn the automatic bid to go dancing.

 

Pac-10 Conference—Los Angeles

Quarterfinal Round

#1 Arizona 78  #9 Oregon State  69

#4 Southern Cal  70  #5 California  56

#7 Oregon  76  #2 U C L A  59

#3 Washington 89  #6 Washington State 87

 

Semifinal Round

#1 Arizona (26-6)  vs. #4 Southern Cal (19-13)  9 PM  Fox Sports

#3 Washington (21-10)  vs. #7 Oregon (16-16)  11:30 PM  Fox Sports

 

Arizona, UCLA, and Washington are in.  Oregon must win this tournament to get in.  As for Southern Cal, the Trojans might work their way into one of the final bubble spots with an upset over the top-seeded Wildcats tonight.  Last night’s battle of the Evergreen State was one of the most exciting of the tournament season with the Huskies coming from behind to knock off arch-rival Washington State by two.

 

Southeastern Conference—Atlanta

1st Round

#4E  Georgia  69  #5W  Auburn  51

#3W  Ole Miss  66  #6E  South Carolina  55

#5E  Tennessee  74  #4W  Arkansas  68

#3E  Vanderbilt  62  #6W  L S U  50

 

Quarterfinal Round

#1W  Alabama (21-10)  vs. #4E Georgia (20-10)  1 PM

#2E  Kentucky (22-8)  vs. #3W Ole Miss (20-12)  3:30 PM

#1E  Florida (24-6)  vs. #5E  Tennessee (19-13)  7:30 PM

#2W Mississippi State (17-13)  vs. #3E  Vanderbilt (22-9)  10 PM

 

Florida, Kentucky, and Vanderbilt are definitely in.  Tennessee is probably in and would only be out if a lot of surprise winners win the remaining conference tournaments.  The Vols would safely secure a spot with a win over the Gators. 

 

The big game in all of college basketball today is the Georgia-Alabama game.  Call this an extra play-in game.  The winner survives to the Dance, while the loser will be hosting an NIT game next week.

 

Southland Conference—Katy, TX

Semifinal Round

#1 McNeese State  91  #4 Texas State  83

#7 UT-San Antonio  79  #3 Sam Houston State 70

 

Championship Game on Saturday

 

S W A C—Garland, TX

Quarterfinal Round

#4 Alabama State  81  #5 Alabama A&M 61

#6 Grambling  65  #3 Mississippi Valley  62

 

Semifinal Round

#2 Jackson State (17-14)  vs. #6 Grambling (11-20)  3:30 PM

#1 Texas Southern (19-11)  vs. #4 Alabama State (15-17)  9 PM

 

The Champion will probably be forced to play in the First Four.  Jackson State is on a mission after losing in the first round last year as the number one seed.

 

W A C—Las Vegas

Quarterfinal Round

#8 San Jose State  74  #4 Idaho 68

#3 New Mexico State  66  #6 Nevada  60

 

Semifinal Round

#1 Utah State (28-3)  vs. #8 San Jose State (17-14)  9 PM

#2 Boise State (19-11)  vs. #3 New Mexico State (16-16)  11:30 PM  ESPN2

 

Utah State is in and should be the higher seed in their first round game.  If the Aggies are upset, then one more bubble will burst.  The one WAC team that beat USU (Idaho) was knocked out of the conference tournament yesterday.

March 10, 2011

NCAA Basketball Conference Tournaments–March 10 Update

Two Newest Dance Participants

 

Northeast Conference Championship

Long Island  85  Robert Morris  82 ot

 

In what may have been the most exciting championship game of the season, the home-standing Blackbirds and visiting Colonials exchanged leads all night.  Two missed three-point shots in the final seconds, one at the buzzer, was all that prevented this game from going to double overtime.

 

LIU opened with a cold shooting hand, and RMU took the lead.  Once the Blackbirds started hitting their shots, this became a game of runs.  LIU had the hot hand in the second half, but RMU kept getting enough offensive rebounds to keep the Colonials in the game.

 

Jamal Olasewere had a game-high 31 points to go with 11 rebounds; he scored seven points in the overtime.  Team leader Julian Boyd was held to just seven points, but the Blackbirds had excellent showings off the bench.  Jason Brickman tossed in 15 points and dished out eight big assists, while Kenny Onyechi added 13 points.

 

Russell Johnson and Velton Jones teamed up for 42 points for the losers.

 

LIU will be a formidable opponent for their favored foe in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.  Their style of play could cause severe matchup problems for a bigger, slower team, especially if that team is not the strongest ball-handling team.  If they were to be bracketed against BYU in the first round, it would be the thriller of the first round. 

 

Big Sky Conference Championship

Northern Colorado  65  Montana  60

 

This game was anticlimactic following the NEC Championship.  Montana kept the pace slow, and the Grizzlies shot out to a 7-0 lead in the first two and a half minutes.  UNC made a run to take its first lead at 17-16 on a three-point shot by Tate Unruh.

 

The lead switched hands several times the remainder of the half with the buzzer sending the teams to the locker tied at 31-31.

 

Montana maintained a small lead for most of the second half, until star guard Devon Beitzel took over.  His three-pointer at the 4:56 mark gave the Bears the lead for good.  Beitzel continued shooting and then forced Montana to foul him, and the Bears hung on to win.

 

Beitzel did not score until late in the first half, but the Big Sky Conference’s leading scorer finished with 27 points.

 

Montana center Brian Qvale hit a layup with 16 seconds remaining to cut the lead to 62-60, but following two made Beitzel free throws, Art Steward committed a turnover to seal the game. 

 

Steward led the Grizzlies with 16 points, while Qvale added 11.

 

Northern Colorado will be one of those teams that will be glad just to be there at the NCAA Tournament.  The Bears should make a quick exit in game one, unless they are chosen as one of the First Four #16 seeds.

 

13 Automatic Qualifiers To Date

Team Conference Record
Arkansas-Little Rock Sunbelt 19-16
Belmont Atlantic South 30-4
Butler Horizon 23-9
Gonzaga West Coast 24-9
Indiana State Missouri Valley 20-13
Long Island Northeast 27-4
Morehead State Ohio Valley 24-9
Northern Colorado Big Sky 21-10
Oakland Summit 25-9
Old Dominion Colonial 27-6
St. Peter’s Metro Atlantic 20-13
UNC-Asheville Big South 19-13
Wofford Southern 21-12

 

No Championship Games Are Scheduled For Thursday

 

Wednesday’s Results/Thursday’s Schedule

All Times EST

Atlantic Coast Conference—Greensboro, NC

1st Round

#8 Virginia (16-14)  vs. #9 Miami (Fla) (18-13)  12 Noon

#5 Boston College (19-11)  vs. #12 Wake Forest (8-23)  Approx. 2:15 PM

#7 Maryland (18-13)  vs. #10 North Carolina State (15-15)  7 PM  ESPN2

#6 Virginia Tech (19-10)  vs. #11 Georgia Tech (13-17)  Approx. 9:15 PM

 

Big 12 Conference—Kansas City

1st Round

#9 Oklahoma State  53  #8 Nebraska  52

#5 Colorado  77  #12 Iowa State  75

#10 Oklahoma  84  #7 Baylor  67

#6 Missouri  88  #11 Texas Tech  84

 

Quarterfinal Round

#9 Oklahoma State (19-12)  vs. #1 Kansas (29-2)  12:30 PM on ESPN2

#5 Colorado (20-12)  vs. #4 Kansas State (22-9)  3PM

#10 Oklahoma (14-17) vs. #2 Texas (25-6)  7 PM

#6 Missouri (23-9) vs. #3 Texas A&M (23-7)  9:30 PM

 

Big East Conference—New York City

2nd Round

#9 Connecticut  79  #8 Georgetown 62

#5 St. John’s  65  #13 Rutgers 63

#7 Cincinnati  87  #15 South Florida 61

#11 Marquette  67  #6 West Virginia  61

 

Quarterfinal Round

#9 Connecticut (23-9)  vs. #1 Pittsburgh (27-4)  12 Noon  ESPN

#5 St. John’s (21-10)  vs. #4 Syracuse (25-6)  Approx. 2:15 PM  ESPN

#7 Cincinnati (25-7)  vs. #2 Notre Dame (25-5)  7 PM  ESPN

#11 Marquette (20-13)  vs. #3 Louisville (23-8)  Approx. 9:15 PM  ESPN

 

Big Ten Conference—Indianapolis

1st Round

#8 Northwestern (17-12)  vs. #9 Minnesota (17-13)  2:30 PM  ESPN2

#7 Michigan State (17-13)  vs. #10 Iowa (11-19)  4:50 PM  ESPN2

#6 Penn State (16-13)  vs. #11 Indiana (12-19)  7:30 PM  Big Ten Network

 

Big West Conference—Anaheim

Quarterfinal Round

#1 Long Beach State (20-10)  vs. #8 UC-Irvine (13-18)  3 PM

#4 Pacific (16-14)  vs. #5 UC-Santa Barbara (15-13)  5:20 PM

#2 Cal Poly (15-14)  vs. #7 UC-Riverside (11-18)  9 PM

#3 Cal State Northridge (13-17)  vs. #6 Cal State Fullerton (11-19)  11:20 PM

 

Conference USA—El Paso, TX

1st Round

#8 East Carolina  78  #9 Central Florida  60

#5 Southern Miss.  63  #12 Tulane  47

#6 Marshall  97  #11 Houston  87

#10 Rice  58  #7 S M U  57

 

Quarterfinal Round

#8 East Carolina (17-14)  vs. #1 U A B  (22-7)  1PM  CBSC

#5 Southern Miss (22-9)  vs. #4 Memphis (22-9)  3:30 PM  CBSC

#6 Marshall (22-10)  vs. #3 U T E P  (23-8)  7:30 PM  CBSC

#10 Rice (14-17)  vs. #2 Tulsa (18-12)  10 PM  CBSC

 

M A C—Cleveland

Quarterfinal Round

#7 Bowling Green (14-18)  vs. #2 Western Michigan (19-11)  12 Noon

#6 Akron (20-12)  vs. #3 Miami (O) (16-15)  2:30 PM

#8 Buffalo (18-12)  vs. #1 Kent State (21-10)  7 PM

#5 Ohio U (18-14)  vs. #4 Ball State (18-12)  9:30 PM

 

M E A C—Winston-Salem, NC

Note: The MEAC has a unique scheduling format which rewards its top three seeds.  Thus, yesterday, there were both first round and quarterfinal round games scheduled.  The quarterfinal round concludes today.

 

1st Round

#6 Norfolk State  68  #11 Howard 53

 

Quarterfinal Round

#1 Bethune-Cookman  66  #9 South Carolina State 50

#2 Hampton  77  #10 Maryland-Eastern Shore  55

 

Quarterfinal Round Continues

#4 Morgan State (15-13)  vs. #5 North Carolina A&T (15-16)  8 PM

#3 Coppin State (16-13)  vs. #6 Norfolk State (11-19)  7 PM

 

Mountain West Conference—Las Vegas

1st Round

#9 T C U  70  #8 Wyoming  61

 

Quarterfinal Round

#9 T C U (11-21)  vs. #1 Brigham Young (28-3)  3 PM

#5 New Mexico (20-11)  vs. #4 Colorado State (19-11)  5:30 PM

#7 Utah (13-17)  vs. #2 San Diego State (29-2)  9 PM

#6 Air Force (15-14)  vs. #3 U N L V  (23-7)  11:30 PM

 

Pac-10 Conference—Los Angeles

1st Round

#9 Oregon State 69  #8 Stanford 67

#7 Oregon 76  #10 Arizona State 69

 

Quarterfinal Round

#4 Southern Cal (18-13)  vs. #5 California (17-13)  3 PM  Fox Sports

#1 Arizona (25-6)  vs. #9 Oregon State (11-19)  5:30 PM  Fox Sports

#2 U C L A  (22-9)  vs. #7 Oregon (15-16)  9 PM  Fox Sports

#3 Washington (20-10)  vs. #6 Washington State (19-11)  11:30 PM  Fox Sports

 

Southeastern Conference—Atlanta

1st Round

#4E  Georgia (20-10)  vs. #5W  Auburn (11-19)  1 PM

#3W  Ole Miss (19-12)  vs. #6E  South Carolina (14-15)  3:30 PM

#4W  Arkansas (18-12)  vs. #5E  Tennessee (18-13)  7:30 PM

#3W  Vanderbilt (21-9)  vs. #6E L S U  (11-20)  10 PM

 

Southland Conference—Katy, TX

Quarterfinal Round

#1 McNeese State 61  #8 Nicholls State 54

#4 Texas State 72  #5 Southeastern Louisiana 68

#7 Texas-San Antonio 97  #2 Northwestern State (LA) 96

#3 Sam Houston State 61  #6 Stephen F. Austin 45

 

Semifinal Round

#3 Sam Houston State (18-12)  vs. #7 Texas-San Antonio (17-13)  7 PM

#1 McNeese State (20-10)  vs. #4 Texas State (16-15)  9:30 PM

 

S W A C–Garland, TX

Quarterfinal Round

#1 Texas Southern 50  #8 Arkansas-Pine Bluff 45

#2 Jackson State 50  #7 Prairie View 38

 

Quarterfinal Round Continues

#3 Mississippi Valley (13-18)  vs. #6 Grambling (10-20)  12:30 PM

#4 Alabama State (14-17)  vs. #5 Alabama A&M (13-14) 9 PM

 

W A C—Las Vegas

1st Round

#8 San Jose State 75  #5 Hawaii 74

#6 Nevada 90  #7 Fresno State 80

 

2nd Round

#4 Idaho (18-12)  vs. #8 San Jose State (16-14)  3 PM  ESPNU

#3 New Mexico State (15-16)  vs. #6 Nevada (13-18)  5:30 PM  ESPNU

December 26, 2010

PiRate Ratings College Football Bowl Preview, Part Two

We are posting three bowl previews this year; this is the second preview.  We will give you the current odds for each game, the PiRate, Mean, and Bias spreads for each game, and the results of our 100 computer simulations for each game.

 

Today, we cover the bowls from Boxing Day through New Year’s Day.  Next week, we will preview the bowls from January 2 to the Championship Game. 

 

Sunday, December 26

Little Caesar’s Bowl

Detroit, MI

8:30 PM EST on ESPN

Toledo (8-4)  vs. Florida Internationl (6-6)

Vegas: Toledo by 1

Totals: 57

PiRate: Toledo by 3.3

Mean: Toledo by 2.8

Bias: Toledo by 16.8

100 Sims: Toledo 67  Florida International 33

Avg. Sim Score: Toledo 33.6  Florida International 25.7

Outlier A: Toledo 49  Florida International 19

Outlier B: Florida International 37  Toledo 24

 

Monday, December 27

Independence Bowl

Shreveport, LA

5:00 PM EST on ESPN

Air Force (8-4)  vs.  Georgia Tech (6-6)

Vegas: Air Force by 2 ½  

Totals: 56

PiRate: Georgia Tech by 1.7

Mean: Air Force by 5.2

Bias: Air Force by 5.9

100 Sims: Air Force 55  Georgia Tech 45

Avg. Sim Score: Air Force 29.2  Georgia Tech 26.9

Outlier A: Air Force 41  Georgia Tech 23

Outlier B: Georgia Tech 34  A Force 23

 

Tuesday, December 28

Champs Sports Bowl

Orlando, FL

6:30 PM EST on ESPN

West Virginia (9-3)  vs. North Carolina State (8-4)

Vegas: West Virginia by 2 ½

Totals: 49

PiRate: West Virginia by 6.8

Mean: West Virginia by 2.3

Bias: West Virginia by 3.0

100 Sims: West Virginia 53  North Carolina State 47 (6 games decided by OT)

Avg. Sim Score: West Virginia 25.8  North Carolina State 25.2

Outlier A: West Virginia 27  North Carolina State 10

Outlier B: North Carolina State 28  West Virginia 12

 

Insight Bowl

Tempe, AZ

10:00 PM EST

Missouri (10-2)  vs.  Iowa (7-5)

Vegas: Missouri by 2 ½

Totals: 46 ½

PiRate: Even

Mean: Missouri by 4.1

Bias: Missouri by 12.6

100 Sims: Missouri 58  Iowa 42

Avg. Sim Score: Missouri 25.6  Iowa 22.3

Outlier A: Missouri 31  Iowa 13

Outlier B: Iowa 21  Missouri 7

 

Wednesday, December 29

Military Bowl

Washington, D.C.

2:30 PM on EST

Maryland (8-4)  vs. East Carolina (6-6)

Vegas: Maryland by 7 ½

Totals: 68 ½

PiRate: Maryland by 18.4

Mean: Maryland by 11.2

Bias: Maryland by 13.8

100 Sims: East Carolina 51  Maryland 49

Avg. Sim Score: Maryland 34.4  East Carolina 34.1

Outlier A: East Carolina 47  Maryland 31

Outlier B: Maryland 42  East Carolina 20

 

Texas Bowl

Houston, TX

6:00 PM EST on ESPN

Baylor (7-5)  vs. Illinois (6-6)

Vegas: Baylor by 1

Totals: 62 ½

PiRate: Baylor by 2.4

Mean: Illinois by 1.6

Bias: Baylor by 6.9

100 Sims: Illinois 54  Baylor 46

Avg. Sim Score: Illinois 32.1  Baylor 28.6

Outlier A: Illinois 34  Baylor 17

Outlier B: Baylor 28  Illinois 18

 

Alamo Bowl

San Antonio, TX

9:15 PM EST on ESPN

Oklahoma State (10-2)  vs. Arizona (7-5)

Vegas: Oklahoma State by 5 ½

Totals: 66

PiRate: Oklahoma State by 1.1

Mean: Oklahoma State by 6.1

Bias: Oklahoma State by 9.6

100 Sims: Oklahoma State 61  Arizona 39

Avg. Sim Score: Oklahoma State 38.0  Arizona 29.1

Outlier A: Oklahoma State 51  Arizona 27

Outlier B: Arizona 34  Oklahoma State 28 (and one other 6-point spread)

 

Thursday, December 30

Armed Forces Bowl

Dallas, TX

12:00 Noon EST on ESPN

S M U (7-6)  vs. Army (6-6)

Vegas: S M U by 7

Totals: 52

PiRate: S M U by 7.7

Mean: S M U by 3.2

Bias: S M U by 10.6

100 Sims: S M U 64  Army 36

Avg. Sim Score: S M U 28.2  Army 20.6

Outlier A: S M U 34  Army 10

Outlier B: Army 24  S M U 16

 

Pinstripe Bowl

New York, NY

3:20 PM EST

Syracuse (7-5)  vs. Kansas State (7-5)

Vegas: Pick’em

Totals: 47 ½

PiRate: Syracuse by 1.5

Mean: Kansas State by 4.6

Bias: Syracuse by 2.3

100 Sims: Syracuse 53  Kansas State 47

Avg. Sim Score: Syracuse 20.1  Kansas State 18.6

Outlier A: Syracuse 24  Kansas State 7

Outlier B: Kansas State 17  Syracuse 3

 

Music City Bowl

Nashville, TN

6:30 PM EST

Tennessee (6-6)  vs. North Carolina (7-5)

Vegas: North Carolina by 1 ½  

Totals: 50 ½

PiRate: North Carolina by 6.8

Mean: North Carolina by 1.5

Bias: Tennessee by 6.6

100 Sims: Tennessee 50  North Carolina 50

Avg. Sim Score: Tennessee 24.5  North Carolina 23.9

Outlier A: Tennessee 30  North Carolina 14

Outlier B: North Carolina 27  Tennessee 12

 

Holiday Bowl

San Diego, CA

10:00 PM EST

Nebraska (10-3)  vs. Washington (6-6)

Vegas: Nebraska by 14

Totals: 52 ½

PiRate: Nebraska by 11.8

Mean: Nebraska by 11.5

Bias: Nebraska by 5.3

100 Sims: Nebraska 57  Washington 43

Avg. Sim Score: Nebraska 26.1  Washington 19.3

Outlier A: Nebraska 27  Washington 6

Outlier B: Washington 23  Nebraska 14

 

Friday, December 31

Meineke Car Care Bowl

Charlotte, NC

12:00 Noon EST

South Florida (7-5)  vs. Clemson (6-6)

Vegas: Clemson by 5 ½

Totals: 40 ½

PiRate: Clemson by 5.1

Mean: Clemson by 3.7

Bias: South Florida by 6.1

100 Sims: South Florida 58  Clemson 42

Avg. Sim Score: South Florida 25.1  Clemson 19.2

Outlier A: South Florida 31  Clemson 12

Outlier B: Clemson 28  South Florida 16

 

Sun Bowl

El Paso, TX

2:00 PM EST on CBS

Notre Dame (7-5)  vs. Miami (Fl) (7-5)

Vegas: Miami by 3

Totals: 47

PiRate: Miami by 6.3

Mean: Notre Dame by 1.2

Bias: Miami by 6.0

100 Sims: Notre Dame 52  Miami 48

Avg. Sim Score: Notre Dame 23.4  Miami 23.2

Outlier A: Notre Dame 30  Miami 14

Outlier B: Miami 35  Notre Dame 14

 

Liberty Bowl

Memphis, TN

3:30 PM EST on ESPN

Central Florida (10-3)  vs. Georgia (6-6)

Vegas: Georgia by 6 ½

Totals: 55 ½

PiRate: Georgia by 12.8

Mean: Georgia by 5.3

Bias: Georgia by 11.3

100 Sims: Georgia 72  Central Florida 28

Avg. Sim Score: Georgia 28.6  Central Florida 17.3

Outlier A: Georgia 38  Central Florida 10

Outlier B: Central Florida 24  Georgia 19

 

Chick-fil-A Bowl

Atlanta, GA

7:30 PM EST on ESPN

South Carolina (9-4)  vs. Florida State (9-4)

Vegas: South Carolina by 3

Totals: 55

PiRate: Florida State by 0.4

Mean: South Carolina by 0.5

Bias: Florida State by 1.6

100 Sims: Florida State 52  South Carolina 48

Avg. Sim Score: South Carolina 26.7  Florida State 26.6

Outlier A: Florida State 30  South Carolina 16

Outlier B: South Carolina 44  Florida State 17

 

Saturday, January 1

TicketCity Bowl

Dallas, TX

12:00 Noon EST on ESPN-U

Texas Tech (7-5)  vs. Northwestern (7-5)

Vegas: Texas Tech by 10

Totals: 60

PiRate: Texas Tech by 12.5

Mean: Texas Tech by 7.3

Bias: Texas Tech by 9.6

100 Sims: Texas Tech 86  Northwestern 14

Avg. Sim Score: Texas Tech 34.6  Northwestern 21.2

Outlier A: Texas Tech 45  Northwestern 17

Outlier B: Northwestern 30  Texas Tech 24 (3 other by 6)

 

Outback Bowl

Tampa, FL

1:00 PM EST on ABC

Florida (7-5) vs. Penn State (7-5)

Vegas: Florida by 7 ½  

Totals: 48

PiRate: Florida by 13.2

Mean: Florida by 5.1

Bias: Florida by 5.5

100 Sims: Florida 54  Penn State 46

Avg. Sim Score: Florida 22.6  Penn State 19.8

Outlier A: Florida 28  Penn State 13

Outlier B: Penn State 21  Florida 10

 

Capital One Bowl

Orlando, FL

1:00 PM EST on ESPN

Michigan State (11-1) vs.  Alabama (9-3)

Vegas: Alabama by 10

Totals: 52 ½

PiRate: Alabama by 15.5

Mean: Alabama by 10.4

Bias: Alabama by 3.2

100 Sims: Alabama 59  Michigan State 41

Avg. Sim Score: Alabama 27.6  Michigan State 24.7

Outlier A: Alabama 31  Michigan State 12

Outlier B: Michigan State 35  Alabama 25

 

Gator Bowl

Jacksonville, FL

1:30 PM EST on ESPN2

Mississippi State (8-4)  vs.  Michigan (7-5)

Vegas: Mississippi State by 5 ½

Totals: 61

PiRate: Mississippi State by 10.3

Mean: Mississippi State by 6.3

Bias: Mississippi State by 4.8

100 Sims: Mississippi State 52  Michigan 48

Avg. Sim Score: Mississippi State 33.7  Michigan 30.1

Outlier A: Mississippi State 38  Michigan 20

Outlier B: Michigan 36  Mississippi State 27

 

Rose Bowl

Pasadena, CA

5:00 PM EST on ESPN

T C U (12-0)  vs. Wisconsin (11-1)

Vegas: T C U by 3

Totals: 58 ½

PiRate: T C U by 7.9

Mean: T C U by 5.8

Bias: Wisconsin by 6.6

100 Sims: Wisconsin 54  T C U 46

Avg. Sim Score: Wisconsin 30.4  T C U 28.8

Outlier A: Wisconsin 40  T C U 24

Outlier B: T C U 34  Wisconsin 24

 

Fiesta Bowl

Glendale, AZ

8:30 PM EST

Oklahoma (11-2)  vs. Connecticut (8-4)

Vegas: Oklahoma by 16 1/2

Totals: 55

PiRate: Oklahoma by 19.7

Mean: Oklahoma by 16.2

Bias: Oklahoma by 20.7

100 Sims: Oklahoma 91  Connecticut 9

Avg. Sim Score: Oklahoma 35.3  Connecticut 14.8

Outlier A: Oklahoma 49  Connecticut 7

Outlier B: Connecticut 27  Oklahoma 23

December 6, 2010

PiRate Ratings For College Football: Final Regular Season

Have To Wait A Day

Normally, we would post how well our picks fared against the spread, but we must wait one day because the Monday Night Football game is part of a parlay.  Check back tomorrow to see how we did.

 

NCAA PiRate Simulated Playoffs Return

In what has been one of our most popular pieces, the NCAA Football Simulated Playoffs will return later this week.  For those of you new to this blog, we have access to a powerful computer simulator that we have used in the past to simulate real games, such as the bowls and the NFL playoffs.  It has been surprisingly accurate, especially in picking Super Bowl scores.

 

Here is how the PiRate Computer Simulated NCAA Playoffs work.  We choose to go with a 12-team playoff.  We take the winners of the ACC, Big East, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-10, and SEC and give them automatic bids.

 

Any other conference champions that finish in the top 16 of the BCS Standings also receive an automatic bid.  Then, at-large teams are selected based on BCS Standings until 12 teams have been selected.

 

Here are your 2010-11 NCAA Simulated Playoff Teams:

 

Automatic Qualifiers

ACC Champion: Virginia Tech

Big East Champion: Connecticut

Big Ten Champion: Wisconsin

Big 12 Champion: Oklahoma

Pac-10 Champion: Oregon

SEC Champion: Auburn

 

Two other teams received automatic bids for winning (or finishing tied in) their conference and placing in the top 16 of the BCS Standings.

 

Mountain West Champion: T C U

WAC co-Champion: Boise State

 

This leaves four spaces for at-large teams.

 

At-large: Stanford

At-large: Ohio State

At-large: Arkansas

At-large: Michigan State

 

Now, the teams are seeded 1 to 12, and we use 11 bowls to play our playoffs.  Here are the seeds and brackets.

 

 1. Auburn

 2. Oregon

 3. T C U

 4. Stanford

 5. Wisconsin

 6. Ohio State

 7. Oklahoma

 8. Arkansas

 9. Michigan State

10. Boise State

11. Virginia Tech

12. Connecticut

 

Round One

Chick-fil-A Bowl: #5 Wisconsin vs. #12 Connecticut

Alamo Bowl: #6 Ohio State vs. #11 Virginia Tech

Insight Bowl: #7 Oklahoma vs. #10 Boise State

Outback Bowl: #8 Arkansas vs. #9 Michigan State

 

Quarterfinal Round

Sugar Bowl: #1 Auburn vs. Outback Bowl Winner

Fiesta Bowl: #2 Oregon vs. Insight Bowl Winner

Capital One Bowl: #3 T C U vs. Alamo Bowl Winer

Cotton Bowl: #4 Stanford vs. Chick-fil-A Bowl Winner

 

Semifinal Round

Orange Bowl: Sugar Bowl Winner vs. Cotton Bowl Winner

Rose Bowl: Fiesta Bowl Winner vs. Capital One Bowl Winner

 

Simper Bowl

National Championship Game: Orange Bowl Winner vs. Rose Bowl Winner

 

Check back next Monday for Round One results.

 

The Final Regular Season PiRate Ratings

The regular season does not officially end until this weekend when Army plays Navy at Philadelphia.  That game will not affect the standings, so we will issue our final regular season ratings today and issue the PiRate, Mean, and Bias ratings for the Army-Navy game.

 

NCAA Top 25 December 6, 2010
Rank Team PiRate Won Lost
1 T C U 133.1 12 0
2 Oregon 132.5 12 0
3 Stanford 131.8 11 1
4 Auburn 131.0 13 0
5 Boise State 128.8 11 1
6 Ohio State 128.3 11 1
7 Oklahoma 127.7 11 2
8 Alabama 126.2 9 3
9 Wisconsin 125.2 11 1
10 Arkansas 124.7 10 2
11 Virginia Tech 124.2 11 2
12 Florida State 119.8 9 4
13 South Carolina 119.4 9 4
14 Nebraska 118.9 10 3
15 Texas A&M 118.5 9 3
16 L S U 117.7 10 2
17 West Virginia 117.0 9 3
18 Oklahoma State 116.3 10 2
19 Nevada 115.7 12 1
20 Georgia 115.7 6 6
21 Mississippi State 115.6 8 4
22 Florida 115.3 7 5
23 Missouri 115.2 10 2
24t Arizona 115.2 7 5
24t Iowa 115.2 7 5
         
Note: Ratings rounded to one decimal point
even though I rank them to two decimal points

 

Atlantic Coast Conference
Atlantic Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Florida State 6-2 9-4 119.8
Clemson 4-4 6-6 111.0
North Carolina State 5-3 8-4 110.2
Maryland 5-3 8-4 105.9
Boston College 4-4 7-5 105.0
Wake Forest 1-7 3-9 92.0
       
Coastal Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Virginia Tech 8-0 11-2 124.2
Miami-FL 5-3 7-5 115.2
North Carolina 4-4 7-5 114.8
Georgia Tech 4-4 6-6 108.5
Duke 1-7 3-9 95.9
Virginia 1-7 4-8 95.0

 

 

Big East Conference
       
Team Conf. Overall Rating
West Virginia 5-2 9-3 117.0
Pittsburgh 5-2 7-5 110.7
Connecticut 5-2 8-4 108.0
South Florida 3-4 7-5 106.9
Louisville 3-4 6-6 104.1
Cincinnati 2-5 4-8 100.7
Syracuse 4-3 7-5 100.0
Rutgers 1-6 4-8 89.5

 

 

Big Ten
       
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Ohio State 7-1 11-1 128.3
Wisconsin 7-1 11-1 125.2
Iowa 4-4 7-5 115.2
Michigan State 7-1 11-1 110.7
Michigan 3-5 7-5 105.3
Penn State 4-4 7-5 104.6
Illinois 4-4 6-6 104.4
Minnesota 2-6 3-9 96.1
Northwestern 3-5 7-5 92.9
Purdue 2-6 4-8 91.1
Indiana 1-7 5-7 90.1

 

 

Big 12
North Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Nebraska 6-2 10-3 118.9
Missouri 6-2 10-2 115.2
Kansas State 3-5 7-5 100.0
Colorado 2-6 5-7 99.6
Iowa State 3-5 5-7 94.9
Kansas 1-7 3-9 88.2
       
South Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Oklahoma 6-2 11-2 127.7
Texas A&M 6-2 9-3 118.5
Oklahoma State 6-2 10-2 116.3
Texas 2-6 5-7 106.3
Baylor 4-4 7-5 105.3
Texas Tech 3-5 7-5 104.4

 

 

Conference USA
East Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Central Florida 7-1 10-3 102.9
Southern Mississippi 5-3 8-4 98.4
East Carolina 5-3 6-6 90.0
U A B 3-5 4-8 86.3
Marshall 4-4 5-7 83.8
Memphis 0-8 1-11 70.7
       
West Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Tulsa 6-2 9-3 98.3
Houston 4-4 5-7 96.3
S M U 6-2 7-6 92.7
U T E P 3-5 6-6 86.0
Rice 3-5 4-8 84.5
Tulane 2-6 4-8 74.6

 

 

Independents
       
Team   Overall Rating
Notre Dame   7-5 108.9
Navy   8-3 102.6
Army   6-5 88.2

 

 

Mid American Conference
East Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Temple 5-3 8-4 92.6
Miami (O) 7-1 9-4 90.6
Ohio U 6-2 8-4 89.4
Kent St. 4-4 5-7 82.9
Bowling Green 1-7 2-10 75.0
Buffalo 1-7 2-10 70.2
Akron 1-7 1-11 67.7
       
West Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Northern Illinois 8-0 10-3 104.1
Toledo 7-1 8-4 89.3
Western Michigan 5-3 6-6 88.8
Central Michigan 2-6 3-9 83.7
Ball State 3-5 4-8 73.9
Eastern Michigan 2-6 2-10 66.9

 

 

Mountain West Conference
       
Team Conf. Overall Rating
T C U 8-0 12-0 133.1
Utah 7-1 10-2 111.1
Air Force 5-3 8-4 106.8
B Y U 5-3 6-6 104.8
S. D. State 5-3 8-4 104.4
Wyoming 1-7 3-9 88.0
UNLV 2-6 2-11 80.4
Colo. State 2-6 3-9 79.8
New Mexico 1-7 1-11 75.2

 

 

Pac-10 Conference
       
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Oregon 9-0 12-0 132.5
Stanford 8-1 11-1 131.8
Arizona 4-5 7-5 115.2
Southern Cal 5-4 8-5 112.0
Arizona St. 4-5 6-6 111.0
Oregon St. 4-5 5-7 109.6
California 3-6 5-7 108.4
Washington 5-4 6-6 107.1
U C L A 2-7 4-8 101.8
Washington State 1-8 2-10 94.2

 

 

Southeastern Conference
East Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
South Carolina 5-3 9-4 119.4
Georgia 3-5 6-6 115.7
Florida 4-4 7-5 115.3
Tennessee 3-5 6-6 106.0
Kentucky 2-6 6-6 105.9
Vanderbilt 1-7 2-10 86.8
       
West Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Auburn 8-0 13-0 131.0
Alabama 5-3 9-3 126.2
Arkansas 6-2 10-2 124.7
L S U 6-2 10-2 117.7
Mississippi State 4-4 8-4 115.6
Ole Miss 1-7 4-8 100.1

 

 

Sunbelt Conference
       
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Florida International 6-2 6-6 87.0
Arkansas State 4-4 4-8 83.9
Troy 6-2 7-5 85.8
Middle Tennessee 5-3 6-6 82.8
North Texas 3-5 3-9 79.7
Louisiana-Monroe 4-4 5-7 78.1
U. of Louisiana 3-5 3-9 77.6
Western Kentucky 2-6 2-10 75.1
Florida Atlantic 3-5 4-8 73.7

 

 

Western Athletic Conference
       
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Boise State 7-1 11-1 128.8
Nevada 7-1 12-1 115.9
Hawaii 7-1 10-3 108.9
Fresno State 5-3 8-4 98.2
Louisiana Tech 4-4 5-7 93.0
Idaho 3-5 6-7 88.1
Utah State 2-6 4-8 88.0
San Jose State 0-8 1-12 78.5
New Mexico State 1-7 2-10 71.9

 

 

This Week’s Games–PiRate Ratings
Home Team Advantage Added (2-5 points)    
       
Saturday, December 11      
Favorite Underdog Spread Score
Navy Army (Philadelphia) 14.4 31-17

 

 

This Week’s Games–Mean and Bias Ratings
Home Team Advantage Added (2-5 points)    
       
Saturday, December 11      
Favorite Underdog Mean Bias
Navy Army  (Philadelphia) 31-23 27-21

 

 

A Look At The Bowls

 

Here are the particulars for the 35 bowl matchups for this year. 

 

All Times Eastern Standard

 

Saturday, December 18

The New Mexico Bowl—Albuquerque, NM

2:00 PM  ESPN

B Y U  6-6  vs. U T E P  6-6

 

The Humanitarian Bowl—Boise, ID

5:30 PM  ESPN

Northern Illinois  10-3  vs. Fresno State  8-4

 

R&L Carriers New Orleans Bowl—New Orleans, LA

9:00 PM  ESPN

Troy  7-5  vs. Ohio U  8-4

 

Tuesday, December 21

Beef O’Brady’s Bowl—St. Petersburg, FL

8:00 PM  ESPN

Louisville  6-6  vs. Southern Mississippi  8-4

 

Wednesday, December 22

MAACO Las Vegas Bowl—Las Vegas, NV

8:00 PM  ESPN

Utah  10-2  vs. Boise State  11-1

Boise State substitutes for a Pac-10 Team

 

Thursday, December 23

San Diego Co. Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl—San Diego, CA

8:00 PM  ESPN

San Diego State  8-4  vs. Navy  8-3 (+ Army Game)

 

Friday, December 24

Sheraton Hawaii Bowl—Honolulu, HI

8:00 PM  ESPN

Hawaii  10-3  vs. Tulsa 9-3

 

Sunday, December 26

Little Caesar’s Bowl—Detroit, MI

8:30 PM  ESPN

Florida International  6-6  vs. Toledo  8-4

Florida International substitutes for a Big Ten Team

 

Monday, December 27

AdvoCare V100 Independence Bowl—Shreveport, LA

5:00 PM  ESPN-2

Georgia Tech  6-6  vs.  Air Force  8-4

 

Tuesday, December 28

Champs Sports Bowl—Orlando, FL

6:30 PM  ESPN

West Virginia  9-3  vs.  North Carolina St.  8-4

 

Insight Bowl—Tempe, AZ

10:00 PM  ESPN

Missouri  10-2  vs.  Iowa  7-5

 

Wednesday, December 29

Military Bowl—Washington, DC

2:30 PM  ESPN

Maryland  8-4  vs.  East Carolina  6-6

 

Texas Bowl—Houston, TX

6:00 PM  ESPN

Baylor  7-5  vs. Illinois  7-5

 

Valero Alamo Bowl—San Antonio, TX

9:15 PM  ESPN

Oklahoma State  10-2  vs.  Arizona  7-5

 

Thursday, December 30

Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl—Ft. Worth, TX

12 Noon  ESPN

S M U  7-6  vs. Army  6-5 (+ Navy Game)

 

New Era Pinstripe Bowl—New York, NY

3:20 PM  ESPN

Syracuse  7-5  vs. Kansas State  7-5

 

Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl—Nashville, TN

6:40 PM  ESPN

Tennessee  6-6  vs.  North Carolina  7-5

 

Bridgepoint Education Holiday Bowl—San Diego, CA

10:00 PM  ESPN

Nebraska  10-3  vs.  Washington  6-6

 

Friday, December 31

Meineke Car Care Bowl—Charlotte, NC

12 Noon  ESPN

Clemson  6-6  vs.  South Florida  7-5

 

Hyundai Sun Bowl—El Paso, TX

2:00 PM  CBS

Miami (FL)  7-5  vs. Notre Dame  7-5

Notre Dame Substitutes for Pac-10 Team

 

AutoZone Liberty Bowl—Memphis, TN

3:30 PM  ESPN

Georgia  6-6  vs.  Central Florida  10-3

 

Chick-fil-A Bowl—Atlanta, GA

7:30 PM  ESPN

South Carolina  9-4  vs. Florida State  9-4

 

Saturday, January 1

Ticket City Bowl—Dallas, TX

12 Noon  ESPN-U

Northwestern  6-6  vs.  Texas Tech  7-5

 

Outback Bowl—Tampa, FL

1:00 PM  ABC

Florida  7-5  vs.  Penn State  7-5

 

Capital One Bowl—Orlando, FL

1:00 PM  ESPN

Michigan State  11-1  vs.  Alabama  9-3

 

Gator Bowl—Jacksonville, FL

1:30 PM  ESPN-2

Michigan  7-5  vs.  Mississippi State  8-4

 

Rose Bowl—Pasadena, CA

5:00 PM  ESPN

T C U  12-0  vs.  Wisconsin  11-1

 

Tostitos Fiesta Bowl—Glendale, AZ

8:30 PM  ESPN

Oklahoma  11-2  vs. Connecticut  8-4

 

Monday, January 3

Discover Orange Bowl—Miami, FL

8:30 PM  ESPN

Virginia Tech  11-2  vs. Stanford  11-1

 

Tuesday, January 4

All-State Sugar Bowl—New Orleans, LA

8:30 PM  ESPN

Arkansas  10-2  vs. Ohio State  11-1

 

Thursday, January 6

GoDaddy.com Bowl—Mobile, AL

8:00 PM  ESPN

Middle Tennessee State  6-6  vs.  Miami (OH)  9-4

 

Friday, January 7

AT&T Cotton Bowl—Arlington, TX

8:00 PM  Fox

Texas A&M  9-3  vs. L S U  10-2

 

Saturday, January 8

BBVA Compass Bowl—Birmingham, AL

12 Noon  ESPN

Pittsburgh  7-5  vs. Kentucky  6-6

 

Sunday, January 9

Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl—San Francisco, CA

9:00 PM  ESPN

Boston College  7-5  vs.  Nevada  12-1

Boston College Substitutes for a Pac-10 Team

 

Monday, January 10

National Championship Game—Glendale, AZ

8:30 PM  ESPN

Auburn  13-0  vs.  Oregon  12-0

November 28, 2010

PiRate Ratings For College Football: December 2-4, 2010

PiRate Ratings Go Perfect 3-0

After suffering through our first losing week of the season last week when we finished 2-2-1, we decided to go with three, 13-point sweetheart teasers.  We won all three.  We went back to what was working and found three gems.  Let’s take a look at the three selections we made for our customers.

1. Texas A&M +10 vs. Texas, West Virginia +16 vs. Pittsburgh, South Florida +25 vs. Miami, and Tennessee +10 vs. Kentucky

WON

We went with a theme in these picks.  We had three rivalry games where we believed all three offered us a chance to take a rival with an edge over their opponent.

Texas A&M was on a roll, having disposed of both Oklahoma and Nebraska, while Texas was going the opposite direction.  We thought the Aggies would win outright and took 10 points insurance.

We also believed that West Virginia had a slight edge over Pittsburgh in the Backyard Brawl.  Getting 16 points felt like a huge gift.  When we issued our selections last Wednesday afternoon, we told our customers that we thought the Mountaineers would be playing for Coach Bill Stewart’s job.  Ironically, when WVU won, it may have sealed Pitt coach Dave Wannstedt’s fate.  Stewart appears to be set to retire any way.

As for the Tennessee game, we knew the Vols were playing for bowl eligibility, and they had defeated Kentucky every year since 1984.  Getting 10 points at home was yet another gift.

2. Wake Forest +19 vs. Vanderbilt, Minnesota +28 ½ vs. Iowa, Boston College +16 vs. Syracuse, and Kansas +38 vs. Missouri

WON

In this teaser, we went with underdogs that we felt would have a good chance to beat the regular spread but would most definitely cover with an extra 13 points.

We told our customers that we believed that Vanderbilt could not beat any FBS team by 19 points at this point in the season, and that the Demon Deacons stood a better than 50-50 chance of winning outright.  We believed that the Gophers would keep the game with Iowa close and have a chance to win Floyd of Rosedale back.  Iowa had little desire after losing close games to fall out of the Big Ten race.

Our key pick this week was the Boston College selection at +16, because we figured that Syracuse would not top 14 points.  We had to sweat out the Kansas-Missouri game, but the Jayhawks just covered.

3. Dallas Cowboys +17 vs. New Orleans Saints, Buffalo Bills +19 ½ vs. Pittsburgh Steelers, Jacksonville Jaguars +20 vs. New York Giants, and Chicago Bears +16 vs. Philadelphia Eagles

WON

We went with underdogs in our NFL pick, which has been our most reliable strategy all season.  Too much parity means lower spreads and more underdogs covering and winning outright.  All four of these games were never in doubt.

Championship Week

Five conferences crown their conference champion by way of a championship game this week.  Here is a little primer of those games.

Friday, December 3

The Mid-American Conference Championship Game at Ford Field in Detroit

6:00 PM EST on ESPN2

Northern Illinois 10-2 vs. Miami (Ohio) 8-4

Saturday, December 4

The Conference USA Championship Game at Bright House Networks Stadium in Orlando

12 Noon EST on ESPN

S M U 7-5 at Central Florida 9-3

———————————————————————————————————————————–

Southeastern Conference Championship Game at The Georgia Dome in Atlanta

3:00 PM EST on CBS

Auburn 12-0 vs. South Carolina 9-3

—————————————————————————————————————————-

The Atlantic Coast Conference Championship at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte

6:45 PM EST on ESPN

Virginia Tech 10-2 vs. Florida State 9-3

—————————————————————————————————————————–

The Big 12 Conference Championship at Cowboys Stadium in Dallas

7:00 PM EST on ABC

Oklahoma 10-2 vs. Nebraska 10-2

This Week’s PiRate Ratings

NCAA Top 25 November 29, 2010
Rank Team PiRate Won Lost
1 T C U 133.1 12 0
2 Oregon 131.9 11 0
3 Stanford 131.8 11 1
4 Boise State 130.6 10 1
5 Ohio State 128.3 11 1
6 Auburn 127.5 12 0
7 Oklahoma 127.1 10 2
8 Alabama 126.2 9 3
9 Wisconsin 125.2 11 1
10 Arkansas 124.7 10 2
11 Virginia Tech 123.1 10 2
12 South Carolina 122.9 9 3
13 Florida State 120.9 9 3
14 Nebraska 119.5 10 2
15 Texas A&M 118.5 9 3
16 L S U 117.7 10 2
17 West Virginia 116.8 8 3
18 Oklahoma State 116.3 10 2
19 Arizona 116.3 7 4
20 Georgia 115.7 6 6
21 Mississippi State 115.6 8 4
22 Nevada 115.3 11 1
23 Florida 115.3 7 5
24 Missouri 115.2 10 2
25 Iowa 115.2 7 5
Note: Ratings rounded to one decimal point
even though I rank them to two decimal points
 

Atlantic Coast Conference

Atlantic Division
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Florida State 6-2 9-3 120.9
Clemson 4-4 6-6 111.0
North Carolina State 5-3 8-4 110.2
Maryland 5-3 8-4 105.9
Boston College 4-4 7-5 105.0
Wake Forest 1-7 3-9 92.0
Coastal Division
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Virginia Tech 8-0 10-2 123.1
Miami-FL 5-3 7-5 115.2
North Carolina 4-4 7-5 114.8
Georgia Tech 4-4 6-6 108.5
Duke 1-7 3-9 95.9
Virginia 1-7 4-8 95.0
 

Big East Conference

Team Conf. Overall Rating
West Virginia 4-2 8-3 116.8
Pittsburgh 4-2 6-5 108.6
Connecticut 4-2 7-4 107.6
South Florida 3-3 7-4 107.3
Louisville 3-4 6-6 104.1
Cincinnati 2-4 4-7 102.8
Syracuse 4-3 7-5 100.0
Rutgers 1-5 4-7 89.7
 

Big Ten

Team Conf. Overall Rating
Ohio State 7-1 11-1 128.3
Wisconsin 7-1 11-1 125.2
Iowa 4-4 7-5 115.2
Michigan State 7-1 11-1 110.7
Michigan 3-5 7-5 105.3
Illinois 4-4 6-5 105.1
Penn State 4-4 7-5 104.6
Minnesota 2-6 3-9 96.1
Northwestern 3-5 7-5 92.9
Purdue 2-6 4-8 91.1
Indiana 1-7 5-7 90.1
 

Big 12

North Division
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Nebraska 6-2 10-2 119.5
Missouri 6-2 10-2 115.2
Kansas State 3-5 7-5 100.0
Colorado 2-6 5-7 99.6
Iowa State 3-5 5-7 94.9
Kansas 1-7 3-9 88.2
South Division
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Oklahoma 6-2 10-2 127.1
Texas A&M 6-2 9-3 118.5
Oklahoma State 6-2 10-2 116.3
Texas 2-6 5-7 106.3
Baylor 4-4 7-5 105.3
Texas Tech 3-5 7-5 104.4
 

Conference USA

East Division
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Central Florida 7-1 9-3 103.2
Southern Mississippi 5-3 8-4 98.4
East Carolina 5-3 6-6 90.0
U A B 3-5 4-8 86.3
Marshall 4-4 5-7 83.8
Memphis 0-8 1-11 70.7
West Division
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Tulsa 6-2 9-3 98.3
Houston 4-4 5-7 96.3
S M U 6-2 7-5 92.4
U T E P 3-5 6-6 86.0
Rice 3-5 4-8 84.5
Tulane 2-6 4-8 74.6
 

Independents

Team Overall Rating
Notre Dame 7-5 108.9
Navy 8-3 102.6
Army 6-5 88.2
 

Mid American Conference

East Division
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Temple 5-3 8-4 92.6
Ohio U 6-2 8-4 89.4
Miami (O) 7-1 8-4 87.8
Kent St. 4-4 5-7 82.9
Bowling Green 1-7 2-10 75.0
Buffalo 1-7 2-10 70.2
Akron 1-7 1-11 67.7
West Division
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Northern Illinois 8-0 10-2 106.9
Toledo 7-1 8-4 89.3
Western Michigan 5-3 6-6 88.8
Central Michigan 2-6 3-9 83.7
Ball State 3-5 4-8 73.9
Eastern Michigan 2-6 2-10 66.9
 

Mountain West Conference

Team Conf. Overall Rating
T C U 8-0 12-0 133.1
Utah 7-1 10-2 111.1
Air Force 5-3 8-4 106.8
B Y U 5-3 6-6 104.8
S. D. State 5-3 8-4 104.4
Wyoming 1-7 3-9 88.0
UNLV 2-6 2-10 82.5
Colo. State 2-6 3-9 79.8
New Mexico 1-7 1-11 75.2
 

Pac-10 Conference

Team Conf. Overall Rating
Oregon 8-0 11-0 131.9
Stanford 8-1 11-1 131.8
Arizona 4-4 7-4 116.3
Southern Cal 4-4 7-5 111.0
Oregon St. 4-4 5-6 110.2
Arizona St. 3-5 5-6 109.9
California 3-6 5-7 108.4
Washington 4-4 5-6 106.9
U C L A 2-6 4-7 102.8
Washington State 1-7 2-9 94.4
 

Southeastern Conference

East Division
Team Conf. Overall Rating
South Carolina 5-3 9-3 122.9
Georgia 3-5 6-6 115.7
Florida 4-4 7-5 115.3
Tennessee 3-5 6-6 106.0
Kentucky 2-6 6-6 105.9
Vanderbilt 1-7 2-10 86.8
West Division
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Auburn 8-0 12-0 127.5
Alabama 5-3 9-3 126.2
Arkansas 6-2 10-2 124.7
L S U 6-2 10-2 117.7
Mississippi State 4-4 8-4 115.6
Ole Miss 1-7 4-8 100.1
 

Sunbelt Conference

Team Conf. Overall Rating
Florida International 6-1 6-5 88.4
Arkansas State 4-4 4-8 83.9
Troy 5-2 6-5 82.8
Middle Tennessee 4-3 5-6 81.4
North Texas 3-5 3-9 79.7
Louisiana-Monroe 4-4 5-7 78.1
U. of Louisiana 3-5 3-9 77.6
Florida Atlantic 3-4 4-7 76.7
Western Kentucky 2-6 2-10 75.1
 

Western Athletic Conference

Team Conf. Overall Rating
Boise State 6-1 10-1 130.6
Nevada 6-1 11-1 115.3
Hawaii 7-1 9-3 106.8
Fresno State 5-3 7-4 97.5
Louisiana Tech 4-3 5-6 93.6
Idaho 2-5 5-7 89.3
Utah State 2-5 4-7 86.2
San Jose State 0-7 1-11 77.3
New Mexico State 1-7 2-10 71.9
 

This Week’s Games–PiRate Ratings

Home Team Advantage Added (2-5 points)
Thursday, December 2
Favorite Underdog Spread Score
ARIZONA Arizona St. 8.9 31-22
Friday, December 3
Favorite Underdog Spread Score
Illinois FRESNO STATE 4.1 31-27
Northern Illinois Miami (O)   (Detroit) 19.1 42-23
Saturday, December 4
Favorite Underdog Spread Score
Southern Cal U C L A 6.2 34-28
SOUTH FLORIDA Connecticut 2.7 20-17
Oregon OREGON STATE 18.7 45-26
Washington WASHINGTON STATE 10.0 31-21
WEST VIRGINIA Rutgers 30.1 42-12
Pittsburgh CINCINNATI 2.8 24-21
FLORIDA INT’L Middle Tennessee 10.0 34-24
Troy FLORIDA ATLANTIC 3.1 30-27
BOISE STATE Utah State 47.4 61-14
Nevada LOUISIANA TECH 18.2 35-17
IDAHO San Jose State 14.5 38-23
HAWAII U n l v 28.3 49-21
Auburn South Carolina (Atlanta) 4.6 35-30
Virginia Tech Florida State (Charlotte) 2.2 25-23
CENTRAL FLORIDA S m u 13.8 35-21
Oklahoma Nebraska (Dallas) 7.6 21-13
 

This Week’s Games–Mean and Bias Ratings

Home Team Advantage Added (2-5 points)
Thursday, December 2
Favorite Underdog Mean Bias
ARIZONA Arizona St. 31-21 27-24
Friday, December 3
Favorite Underdog Mean Bias
Illinois FRESNO STATE 34-31 34-27
Northern Illinois Miami (O)  (Detroit) 35-24 41-20
Saturday, December 4
Favorite Underdog Mean Bias
Southern Cal U C L A 31-21 30-21
SOUTH FLORIDA Connecticut 27-24 27-23
Oregon OREGON STATE 49-26 51-19
Washington WASHINGTON STATE 35-27 35-20
WEST VIRGINIA Rutgers 34-14 34-14
Pittsburgh CINCINNATI 26-21 24-16
FLORIDA INT’L Middle Tennessee 34-22 28-26
Troy FLORIDA ATLANTIC 31-24 34-28
BOISE STATE Utah State 56-20 59-17
Nevada LOUISIANA TECH 37-17 35-31
IDAHO San Jose State 42-24 45-28
HAWAII U n l v 49-20 48-14
Auburn South Carolina (Atlanta) 38-24 34-24
Virginia Tech Florida State  (Charlotte) 26-25 27-19
CENTRAL FLORIDA S m u 34-26 35-30
Oklahoma Nebraska  (Dallas) 21-16 22-20
 

Bowl Projections

Bowl

Conference Team Conference Team
New Mexico MWC #4 or (5) B Y U 6-6 WAC (#3?) Fresno St. 7-5
Humanitarian MAC #3 Miami (O) 8-5 WAC #(1) or 2 Boise St. 11-1
New Orleans Sunbelt #(1) or 2 Fla. Int’l 7-5 C-USA #5 UTEP 6-6
Beef O’Brady’s Big East #6 Connecticut 7-5 C-USA #4-6 Southern Miss 8-4
MAACO MWC #1 Utah 10-2 Pac 10 #5 [Ga. Tech 6-6]
Poinsettia MWC #2 S. D. State 8-4 Navy or WAC NAVY 9-3
Hawaii Hawaii/WAC #3/4 HAWAII 10-3 C-USA #2-6 Tulsa 9-3
Little Caesar’s Pizza Big 10 #8/SBC [Louisville 6-6] MAC #1-2 N. Illinois 11-2
Independence ACC #7 Clemson 6-6 MWC #3 Air Force 8-4
Champs Sports Big East #2 Notre Dame 7-5 ACC #3 N. C. State 8-4
Insight Big 12 #4 Missouri 10-2 Big 10 #4 or 5 Michigan 7-5
Military ACC #8 Boston Coll. 7-5 C-USA #6 E C U 6-6
Texas Big 12 #6-7 Texas Tech 7-5 Big 10 #6-7 Penn State 7-5
Alamo Big 12 #3 Oklahoma St. 10-2 Pac 10 #2 Arizona 8-4
Armed Forces C-USA #3-4 S M U 7-6 MWC #3-5/Army Army 6-6
Pinstripe Big East #3-4 Syracuse 7-5 Big 12 #6-7 Baylor 7-5
Music City SEC # 7 Tennessee 6-6 ACC #6 Maryland 8-4
Holiday Big 12 #5 Texas A&M 9-3 Pac 10 #3 Washington 6-6
Meineke Car Care ACC #4-5 N. Carolina 8-4 Big East #3-4 S. Florida 7-5
Sun ACC #4 or 5 Miami (FL) 7-5 Pac 10 #4 [Ohio U 8-4]
Liberty SEC #8 or 9 Georgia 6-6 C-USA #1 Central Fla. 10-3
Chick-fil-A SEC #3-6 Miss. State 8-4 ACC #2 Florida State 9-4
Ticket City Big 10 #6-7 Northwestern 7-5 Big 12 #8/CUSA Kansas St. 7-5
Outback SEC #3-6 E S. Carolina 9-4 Big 10 #3 Iowa 7-5
Capital One Big 10 #2 Michigan St. 11-1 SEC #2 L S U 10-2
Gator Big 10 #4 or 5 Illinois 7-5 SEC #6 Florida 7-5
Rose BCS Pac10 T C U 12-0 BCS Big 10 Wisconsin 11-1
Fiesta BCS Big 12 Oklahoma 11-2 BCS At-Large Stanford 11-1
Orange BCS ACC Va. Tech 11-2 BCS At-Large West Va. 9-3
Sugar BCS SEC Ohio State 11-1 BCS At-Large Arkansas 10-2
GoDaddy.com Sunbelt # 2 Troy 7-5 MAC #1 or 2 Toledo 8-4
Cotton Big 12 #2 Nebraska 10-3 SEC #3-6 W Alabama 9-3
BBVA Compass Big East #5 Pittsburgh 7-5 SEC #8 or 9 Kentucky 6-6
Kraft Fight Hunger Pac 10 #6 [Temple 8-4] WAC #1 Nevada 11-1
Championship Game *** BCS #1 *** Oregon 12-0 *** BCS #2 *** Auburn 13-0
Teams in ALL CAPS and Italicized have already accepted a bid to this bowl
Teams in [Brackets] are at-large invitees because a conference cannot supply a qualified team

November 22, 2010

PiRate Ratings For College Football: November 23-27, 2010

The Winning Streak Comes To An End

It had to happen.  We knew we could not go through the entire season with one winning week after another.  Our luck ran dry this weekend.  Our picks went 2-2-1 against the spread, which in our terms, is a losing week, since you lay 10-11 odds when picking straight sides.

 

Perhaps we should not have deviated from our sweetheart teaser picks, but we liked the five games we selected.  Let’s quickly reveal our picks so we can move on and talk college football

 

1. Tennessee -9 vs. Vanderbilt

WON

Okay, if you are one of our regular subscribers to our handicapping service, maybe you did enjoy a winning week.  For, we told you that we felt that the Vols had a 99% chance of covering at -9.  If you decided to make this your only pick, then you went 1-0.

 

Vanderbilt has run out of gas, while Tennessee is on their annual November roll.  The final score was only 24-10, and we had to sweat out a late Vandy run with backup quarterback Jared Funk.

 

2. Ohio State -3 vs. Iowa

Push

This game surprised us a bit.  We felt as if the Buckeyes were ready to pull off a two touchdown win, and when the offense struggled early, we were concerned.  Ohio State is not as strong as they were supposed to be, and they should not have gained ground on Wisconsin in the BCS standings. 

 

3. Texas A&M + 2 ½ vs. Nebraska

WON

Please don’t let Bo Pelini hear this.  We told our subscribers that we had a sneaky suspicion that Nebraska would see a lot of questionable officiating calls go against them in this game, just like it happened against Texas.  The national media has to put on a good face, but we could care less about stepping on toes of the Big 12 Conference.  We warned our fans on Thursday that we suspected this would happen.  The game was considered a tossup, so we felt A&M would win by a touchdown.  It was only by a field goal, but we won any way.

 

4. Cleveland Browns + 1 ½ vs. Jacksonville Jaguars

Lost

The Browns’ short flirtation with respectability has gone back into hibernation.  We blew this one royally, thinking the boys from Lake Erie would win by 7-10 points.

 

5. San Francisco 49ers + 3 ½ vs. Tampa Bay Bucaneers

Lost

Tampa Bay has proven they are playoff worthy.  San Francisco’s offensive woes continue, and yet they are still in contention in the worst division in the history of NFL football.

 

A Look At The FBS Conference Races and Bowls

There are 35 bowls this year.  Thus, 70 teams need to be bowl eligible.  With two weeks to go in the season, only 64 teams are bowl eligible.  It is a sure thing that at least one or two others will gain bowl eligibility due to the schedule.  What happens if the magic number falls short of 70?  Will the NCAA allow 5-7 teams into the bowls?  Who would want to see a 5-7 and 6-6 team face off in a loser bowl?

 

A 12-team playoff, using the top 11 bowls would leave 24 bowls for the rest of the NCAA.  This would not be a problem.  The bowl that might end up with a 5-7 team would end up with a 7-5 or 8-4 team under a 12-team playoff.

 

The PiRate Ratings have conducted simulated NCAA football playoffs the past two seasons, and we will do so again after the end of the regular season.

 

Let’s look at each conference as it stands today.

 

A C C

Virginia Tech has sewn up the Coastal Division Championship.  They will face either North Carolina State or Florida State.  If N.C. State beats Maryland, they win the division title.  If Maryland wins, Florida State goes to the ACC title game.

 

Nine teams are already bowl eligible, and the conference has eight bowl tie-ins.  Expect all nine teams to land in bowls.

 

 

Big East

No team in this league belongs in a BCS bowl game.  TCU and Boise State are 21 points better than the best team in the Big East.  The cold hard fact is that the winner of this conference will be the last team chosen in the BCS Bowl picks—the Fiesta Bowl. 

 

Pittsburgh has a one game lead over West Virginia and Connecticut.  They would lose a three-way tiebreaker if the three finished 5-2.

 

Connecticut, South Florida, and Syracuse are bowl eligible.  Louisville is one win away, while Cincinnati and Rutgers are still in contention at 4-6.  We think UL will get that sixth win this week against Rutgers, while Cincinnati falls short.  Throw in Notre Dame, which will finish no worse than 6-6, and there will be enough teams to satisfy the league’s allotment.

 

 

 

Big Ten

Three teams are in contention for the Rose Bowl with one week to go.  Wisconsin, Ohio State, and Michigan State are tied at 6-1.  If they all win this week, the highest ranked team in the BCS rankings will get the Rose Bowl bid.  Wisconsin holds a marginal lead over Ohio State.  The Badgers face Northwestern, while the Buckeyes host Michigan.  It will be a close vote if both win.  Michigan State wins a tiebreaker with Wisconsin, while Wisconsin wins a tiebreaker with Ohio State.  If Ohio State and Michigan State finish tied at 7-1, the Buckeyes will be the higher ranked team in the BCS and go to the Rose Bowl.

 

Eight teams are bowl eligible, and there is a decent chance that a second team will get a BCS at-large bid.  That would make nine bowl openings for eight teams, and the need for an at-large representative for the Little Caesar’s Pizza Bowl.

 

 

 

Big 12

The Big 12 is out of the national championship picture this year.  Nebraska will win the North Division with a win over Colorado or a Missouri loss to Kansas.  Oklahoma State needs to beat Oklahoma to wrap up the South Division, but the Sooners could easily win this game.  If Texas A&M beats Texas, and Oklahoma beats Oklahoma State, it will take five steps into the conference’s tiebreaker rules to determine the representative for the Big 12 Championship Game.  Oklahoma would hold the leg up over the other two.

 

Colorado and Texas need wins to gain bowl eligibility, but it is our opinion that both will lose their finales and miss out.  That will leave eight bowl eligible teams for eight bowls.

 

 

 

Conference USA

In the East, Central Florida is as close to in the league title game as a team can be and not already have it clinched.  UCF only needs to beat hapless Memphis to secure the division flag.  It is a certainty.

 

In the West, SMU controls its own destiny.  However, the Mustangs play at East Carolina this week.  We believe the Pirates will win.  That means Tulsa would capture the flag with a win over Southern Miss.  We will give the Golden Hurricane the edge.

 

Houston needs a win at Texas Tech to gain bowl eligibility, but the Cougars are wounded without their top two quarterbacks.  No bowl for Houston this year.

 

 

 

Independents

Navy is bowl eligible, and the Midshipmen have already accepted a bid to the Poinsettia Bowl.  Army is also bowl eligible, and they will get an at-large selection somewhere.  Notre Dame is bowl eligible, and they will either receive one of the Big East bowl bids or an at-large bid.

 

 

Mid-American

As usual, there are always more bowl eligible teams than bowl bids for the MAC.  Ohio, Temple, and Miami (O) from the East and Northern Illinois and Toledo from the West are bowl eligible.  Western Michigan will become bowl eligible with a win at Bowling Green.  That will leave six teams available for three bids.  Expect five of the six to go bowling.

 

 

Mountain West Conference

TCU’s blowout win over New Mexico this week will give the Horned Frogs their second consecutive undefeated regular season finish and at-large selection to a BCS Bowl.  There is a small chance that they could play for the National Championship.  Their BCS ranking will drop by playing the 1-10 Lobos, while Boise State finished on the road against a ranked team.

 

Five teams are bowl eligible, and all five will go to bowls.  That will leave one bowl spot open for an at-large invitee—the New Mexico Bowl.

 

 

 

Pac-10

This is the messy conference.  To start out, Southern Cal is ineligible for a bowl.  Throw in the chance that Stanford will receive an at-large BCS Bowl bid.  Now, top it off with the fact that Arizona is the only other bowl eligible team at this point.  California, Oregon State, UCLA, Washington, and Arizona State are still alive in the bowl eligibility race, but we believe only one of these five will do it.  That means this league could fall three bids short.

 

 

 

Southeastern

“As the Cam Turns” is the top-rated soap opera in the South during November sweeps.  It just may turn south on Auburn this week.  We think Alabama is going to end the Tigers’ championship hopes this week.  We cannot see any scenario where Auburn would jump Boise State and TCU after losing this late in the season.  It is no gimme that the Tigers can beat South Carolina twice in one season.

 

LSU can grab an at-large bid to a BCS Bowl with a win at Arkansas, but we believe the Razorbacks will put an end to those aspirations.

 

Georgia and Tennessee need victories this week to gain bowl eligibility.  We think both will be victorious.  That will leave 10 bowl eligible teams for nine bowls and an at-large bid.

 

 

 

 

Sunbelt

Somebody has to win this league.  With two weeks left in the season, one for UL-Monroe, no team has earned bowl eligibility.  The schedule guarantees that at least one team will become bowl eligible, and we think at least two will pick up a sixth win.  For a change, Troy may not win the conference championship.

 

 

 

Western Athletic

Boise State has a tough finale at Nevada this week, but we do not believe the boys from Reno have a strong enough defense to slow down the Broncos.  Boise State is our top-rated team, and we feel like they would be a field goal choice over Oregon in a national title game.  A win at Nevada should allow the Broncos to jump over TCU in the BCS standings, and if Auburn loses to Alabama, it should put BSU into the number two slot.

 

Louisiana Tech and Idaho still have remote chances at bowl eligibility, but we think both will fall one game short.  With BSU getting a BCS Bowl bid, the WAC will fall one team short in its bowl obligations. 

 

The Pi-Rate Ratings

NCAA Top 25 November 22, 2010
Rank Team PiRate Won Lost
1 Boise State 134.6 10 0
2 T C U 132.9 11 0
3 Oregon 132.1 10 0
4 Stanford 129.7 10 1
5 Alabama 127.5 9 2
6 Ohio State 127.1 10 1
7 Oklahoma 127.0 9 2
8 Auburn 126.2 11 0
9 Arkansas 124.4 9 2
10 Virginia Tech 122.8 9 2
11 Wisconsin 122.7 10 1
12 South Carolina 121.1 8 3
13 Texas A&M 118.8 8 3
14 Nebraska 118.8 9 2
15 Florida State 118.2 8 3
16 L S U 118.0 10 1
17t Florida 118.0 7 4
17t Miami (Fla) 118.0 7 4
19 Iowa 117.3 7 4
20 Oklahoma State 116.4 10 1
21 Arizona 116.1 7 3
22 North Carolina 115.6 6 5
23 Georgia 115.5 5 6
24 Missouri 114.9 9 2
25 Mississippi State 114.8 7 4
         
Note: Ratings rounded to one decimal point
even though I rank them to two decimal points

 

Atlantic Coast Conference
Atlantic Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Florida State 6-2 8-3 118.2
Clemson 4-4 6-5 112.8
North Carolina State 5-2 8-3 111.4
Maryland 4-3 7-4 104.7
Boston College 4-4 6-5 103.9
Wake Forest 1-7 2-9 89.9
       
Coastal Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Virginia Tech 7-0 9-2 122.8
Miami-FL 5-3 7-4 118.0
North Carolina 3-4 6-5 115.6
Georgia Tech 4-4 6-5 108.7
Virginia 1-6 4-7 95.3
Duke 1-6 3-8 95.1

 

 

Big East Conference
       
Team Conf. Overall Rating
West Virginia 3-2 7-3 114.6
Pittsburgh 4-1 6-4 110.8
Connecticut 3-2 6-4 106.4
South Florida 3-3 6-4 104.5
Cincinnati 2-3 4-6 104.0
Louisville 2-4 5-6 102.7
Syracuse 4-3 7-4 101.1
Rutgers 1-4 4-6 91.1

 

 

Big Ten
       
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Ohio State 6-1 10-1 127.1
Wisconsin 6-1 10-1 122.7
Iowa 4-3 7-4 117.3
Michigan State 6-1 10-1 110.2
Michigan 3-4 7-4 106.5
Penn State 4-3 7-4 105.1
Illinois 4-4 6-5 105.1
Northwestern 3-4 7-4 95.4
Minnesota 1-6 2-9 94.0
Purdue 2-5 4-7 92.5
Indiana 0-7 4-7 88.7

 

 

Big 12
North Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Nebraska 5-2 9-2 118.8
Missouri 5-2 9-2 114.9
Kansas State 3-5 6-5 100.7
Colorado 2-5 5-6 100.3
Iowa State 3-5 5-7 94.9
Kansas 1-6 3-8 88.5
       
South Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Oklahoma 5-2 9-2 127.0
Texas A&M 5-2 8-3 118.8
Oklahoma State 6-1 10-1 116.4
Texas 2-5 5-6 106.0
Baylor 4-4 7-5 105.3
Texas Tech 3-5 6-5 104.2

 

 

Conference USA
East Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Central Florida 6-1 8-3 104.8
Southern Mississippi 5-2 8-3 98.6
East Carolina 5-2 6-5 90.2
U A B 3-4 4-7 86.8
Marshall 3-4 4-7 83.6
Memphis 0-7 1-10 69.1
       
West Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Tulsa 5-2 8-3 98.1
Houston 4-4 5-6 96.5
S M U 5-2 6-5 92.2
U T E P 3-5 6-6 86.0
Rice 2-5 3-8 84.0
Tulane 2-5 4-7 74.8

 

 

Independents
       
Team   Overall Rating
Notre Dame   6-5 107.0
Navy   8-3 102.6
Army   6-5 88.2

 

 

Mid American Conference
East Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Temple 5-2 8-3 95.2
Ohio U 6-1 8-3 91.7
Miami (O) 6-1 7-4 85.2
Kent St. 3-4 4-7 80.6
Bowling Green 1-6 2-9 77.1
Buffalo 1-6 2-9 71.5
Akron 0-7 0-11 66.4
       
West Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Northern Illinois 7-0 9-2 103.9
Toledo 6-1 7-4 88.5
Western Michigan 4-3 5-6 86.7
Central Michigan 2-5 3-8 84.5
Ball State 3-5 4-8 73.9
Eastern Michigan 2-5 2-9 69.9

 

 

Mountain West Conference
       
Team Conf. Overall Rating
T C U 7-0 11-0 132.9
Utah 6-1 9-2 111.7
Air Force 5-3 8-4 106.8
B Y U 5-2 6-5 104.2
S. D. State 4-3 7-4 102.4
Wyoming 1-7 3-9 88.0
UNLV 2-5 2-9 84.5
Colo. State 2-6 3-9 79.8
New Mexico 1-6 1-10 75.4

 

 

Pac-10 Conference
       
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Oregon 7-0 10-0 132.1
Stanford 7-1 10-1 129.7
Arizona 4-3 7-3 116.1
Southern Cal 4-4 7-4 112.9
Oregon St. 4-3 5-5 112.3
California 3-5 5-6 110.2
Arizona St. 2-5 4-6 109.2
Washington 3-4 4-6 105.1
U C L A 2-5 4-6 103.5
Washington State 1-7 2-9 94.4

 

 

Southeastern Conference
East Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
South Carolina 5-3 8-3 121.1
Florida 4-4 7-4 118.0
Georgia 3-5 5-6 115.5
Kentucky 2-5 6-5 106.9
Tennessee 2-5 5-6 105.0
Vanderbilt 1-7 2-9 88.9
       
West Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Alabama 5-2 9-2 127.5
Auburn 7-0 11-0 126.2
Arkansas 5-2 9-2 124.4
L S U 6-1 10-1 118.0
Mississippi State 3-4 7-4 114.8
Ole Miss 1-6 4-7 100.9

 

 

Sunbelt Conference
       
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Florida International 5-1 5-5 88.1
Arkansas State 4-3 4-7 84.2
Troy 4-2 5-5 82.2
Middle Tennessee 3-3 4-6 79.9
North Texas 3-5 3-8 79.0
Louisiana-Monroe 4-3 5-6 78.9
Florida Atlantic 3-3 4-6 78.2
U. of Louisiana 2-5 2-9 76.8
Western Kentucky 2-5 2-9 75.7

 

 

Western Athletic Conference
       
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Boise State 6-0 10-0 134.6
Nevada 5-1 10-1 111.3
Hawaii 6-1 8-3 106.2
Fresno State 4-3 6-4 97.7
Louisiana Tech 3-3 4-6 94.0
Idaho 2-4 5-6 89.1
Utah State 2-5 4-7 86.2
San Jose State 0-6 1-10 76.9
New Mexico State 1-6 2-9 72.5

 

 

 
Home Team Advantage Added (2-5 points)    
       
Tuesday, November 23      
Favorite Underdog Spread Score
Temple MIAMI (O) 7.0 28-21
       
Thursday, November 25      
Favorite Underdog Spread Score
Texas A&M TEXAS 10.3 24-14
       
Friday, November 26      
Favorite Underdog Spread Score
Louisville RUTGERS 8.6 28-19
Western Michigan BOWLING GREEN 6.6 27-20
West Virginia PITTSBURGH 1.3 21-20
ALABAMA Auburn 3.8 31-27
Buffalo AKRON 2.6 24-21
TOLEDO Central Michigan 7.0 38-31
Northern Illinois EASTERN MICHIGAN 31.5 45-13
EAST CAROLINA S m u 1.0 35-34
Ohio U KENT STATE 8.6 30-21
ARIZONA STATE U c l a 8.7 26-17
NEBRASKA Colorado 21.5 28-6
TULSA Southern Miss. 2.5 38-35
OREGON Arizona 19.5 44-24
Boise State NEVADA 26.3 46-20
       
Saturday, November 27      
Favorite Underdog Spread Score
ARKANSAS L s u 9.4 35-26
STANFORD Oregon State 20.4 37-17
CONNECTICUT Cincinnati 5.4 26-21
FLORIDA STATE Florida 2.7 27-24
GEORGIA Georgia Tech 9.3 33-24
North Carolina St. MARYLAND 3.7 24-20
Iowa MINNESOTA 20.3 37-17
Mississippi State OLE MISS 11.4 28-17
North Carolina DUKE 18.5 45-26
SYRACUSE Boston College 0.2 17-17 to ot
OHIO STATE Michigan 23.6 44-20
Oklahoma OKLAHOMA STATE 8.1 34-26
Michigan State PENN STATE 2.1 30-28
South Carolina CLEMSON 5.8 34-28
VANDERBILT Wake Forest 2.0 26-24
RICE U a b 0.2 34-34 to ot
Kansas State NORTH TEXAS 18.7 44-25
VIRGINIA TECH Virginia 30.0 37-7
WISCONSIN Northwestern 30.3 51-21
FLORIDA INT’L Arkansas State 6.4 34-28
MIAMI (FL) South Florida 16.5 38-21
MIDDLE TENNESSEE Florida Atlantic 4.2 31-27
UL-MONROE UL-Lafayette 4.6 26-21
PURDUE Indiana 6.8 38-31
TENNESSEE Kentucky 1.1 35-34
TEXAS TECH Houston 10.7 45-34
TROY Western Kentucky 9.5 38-28
Central Florida MEMPHIS 33.2 40-7
MARSHALL Tulane 11.8 35-23
Missouri Kansas (Kansas City) 26.4 40-14
Hawaii NEW MEXICO STATE 30.7 45-14
UTAH B y u 10.0 34-24
T c u NEW MEXICO 55.0 55-0
SAN DIEGO STATE U n l v 20.9 42-21
Louisiana Tech SAN JOSE STATE 14.1 31-17
SOUTHERN CAL Notre Dame 8.9 33-24
FRESNO STATE Idaho 11.6 38-26

 

 

This Week’s Games–PiRate Ratings
Home Team Advantage Added (2-5 points)    
       
Tuesday, November 23      
Favorite Underdog Mean Bias
Temple MIAMI (O) 27-20 27-16
       
Thursday, November 25      
Favorite Underdog Mean Bias
Texas A&M TEXAS 23-13 20-14
       
Friday, November 26      
Favorite Underdog Mean Bias
Louisville RUTGERS 24-21 28-17
Western Michigan BOWLING GREEN 35-28 38-16
PITTSBURGH West Virginia 17-14 17-14
ALABAMA Auburn 31-27 31-28
Buffalo AKRON 23-20 23-20
TOLEDO Central Michigan 38-30 41-21
Northern Illinois EASTERN MICHIGAN 45-19 49-17
EAST CAROLINA S m u 36-34 34-38
Ohio U KENT STATE 35-23 33-14
ARIZONA STATE U c l a 31-20 27-20
NEBRASKA Colorado 28-9 23-17
TULSA Southern Miss. 41-37 44-34
OREGON Arizona 42-23 41-23
Boise State NEVADA 42-30 60-31
       
Saturday, November 27      
Favorite Underdog Mean Bias
ARKANSAS L s u 31-27 31-20
STANFORD Oregon State 37-20 38-19
CONNECTICUT Cincinnati 26-21 24-16
FLORIDA STATE Florida 30-27 30-27
GEORGIA Georgia Tech 31-20 28-24
North Carolina St. MARYLAND 24-20 27-17
Iowa MINNESOTA 30-13 34-10
Mississippi State OLE MISS 33-25 34-24
North Carolina DUKE 35-24 35-24
SYRACUSE Boston College 16-14 19-17
OHIO STATE Michigan 37-17 38-24
OKLAHOMA STATE Oklahoma 30-27 27-31
Michigan State PENN STATE 30-27 20-23
South Carolina CLEMSON 35-30 36-20
VANDERBILT Wake Forest 23-17 20-23
RICE U a b 35-35 to ot 38-36
Kansas State NORTH TEXAS 41-21 45-24
VIRGINIA TECH Virginia 35-9 31-14
WISCONSIN Northwestern 45-24 45-24
FLORIDA INT’L Arkansas State 34-27 34-27
MIAMI (FL) South Florida 30-17 30-20
MIDDLE TENNESSEE Florida Atlantic 27-26 24-23
UL-MONROE UL-Lafayette 35-27 35-21
PURDUE Indiana 38-31 37-28
TENNESSEE Kentucky 34-31 35-30
TEXAS TECH Houston 41-32 41-28
TROY Western Kentucky 40-28 35-31
Central Florida MEMPHIS 42-14 47-10
MARSHALL Tulane 35-28 32-31
Missouri Kansas (Kansas City) 41-17 31-13
Hawaii NEW MEXICO STATE 45-17 44-17
UTAH B y u 37-24 28-24
T c u NEW MEXICO 50-7 56-0
SAN DIEGO STATE U n l v 44-24 44-20
Louisiana Tech SAN JOSE STATE 27-16 28-16
SOUTHERN CAL Notre Dame 34-27 28-25
FRESNO STATE Idaho 38-30 38-26

 

 

Bowl Conference Team Conference Team
New Mexico MWC #4 or (5) [Temple 9-3] WAC (#3?) [Army 6-6]
Humanitarian MAC #3 Toledo 9-3 WAC #(1) or 2 Fresno St. 7-5
New Orleans Sunbelt #(1) or 2 Fla. Int’l 7-5 C-USA #5 S M U 6-6
Beef O’Brady’s Big East #6 Connecticut 7-5 C-USA #4-6 East Carolina 7-5
MAACO MWC #1 Utah 10-2 Pac 10 #5 [Kentucky 6-6]
Poinsettia MWC #2 San Diego St. 8-4 Navy or WAC NAVY 9-3
Hawaii Hawaii/WAC #3/4 HAWAII 10-3 C-USA #2-6 Central Fla. 9-4
Little Caesar’s Pizza Big 10 #8/SBC [Boston Coll. 6-6] MAC #1-2 N. Illinois 11-2
Independence ACC #7 Clemson 6-6 MWC #3 B Y U 6-6
Champs Sports Big East #2 West Va. 8-4 ACC #3 Miami 8-4
Insight Big 12 #4 Missouri 10-2 Big 10 #4 or 5 Michigan 7-5
Military ACC #8 Georgia Tech 6-6 C-USA #6 U T E P 6-6
Texas Big 12 #6-7 Texas Tech 7-5 Big 10 #6-7 Northwestern 7-5
Alamo Big 12 #3 Nebraska 10-3 Pac 10 #2 Arizona 8-4
Armed Forces C-USA #3-4 Southern Miss 8-4 MWC #3-5/Army Air Force 8-4
Pinstripe Big East #3-4 Syracuse 8-4 Big 12 #6-7 Baylor 7-5
Music City SEC # 7 Tennessee 6-6 ACC #6 Maryland 7-5
Holiday Big 12 #5 Texas A&M 9-3 Pac 10 #3 California 6-6
Meineke Car Care ACC #4-5 N. Carolina 7-5 Big East #3-4 S. Florida 7-5
Sun ACC #4 or 5 N.C. State 9-4 Pac 10 #4 [Notre Dame 6-6]
Liberty SEC #8 or 9 Florida 7-5 C-USA #1 Tulsa 10-3
Chick-fil-A SEC #3-6 L S U 10-2 ACC #2 Florida St. 9-3
Ticket City Big 10 #6-7 Illinois 7-5 Big 12 #8/CUSA Kansas St. 7-5
Outback SEC #3-6 E S. Carolina 9-4 Big 10 #3 Iowa 8-4
Capital One Big 10 #2 Mich. St. 11-1 SEC #2 Alabama 10-2
Gator Big 10 #4 or 5 Penn State 7-5 SEC #6 Miss. State 8-4
Rose BCS Pac10 Stanford 11-1 BCS Big 10 Wisconsin 11-1
Fiesta BCS Big 12 Oklahoma 11-2 BCS At-Large Pittsburgh 8-4
Orange BCS ACC Va. Tech 11-2 BCS At-Large T C U 12-0
Sugar BCS SEC Auburn 12-1 BCS At-Large Ohio State 11-1
GoDaddy.com Sunbelt # 2 Troy 6-6 MAC #1 or 2 Ohio U 9-4
Cotton Big 12 #2 Okla. St. 10-2 SEC #3-6 W Arkansas 10-2
BBVA Compass Big East #5 Louisville 6-6 SEC #8 or 9 Georgia 6-6
Kraft Fight Hunger Pac 10 #6 [Miami (O) 7-5] WAC #1 Nevada 11-2
Nat’l Championship *** BCS #1 *** Oregon 12-0 *** BCS #2 *** Boise State 12-0

 

All CAPS and Italics—Team has already accepted bid to this bowl

Teams in [Brackets] are at-large entries.

November 15, 2010

PiRate Ratings For College Football: November 16-20, 2010

Another Great Week Versus Spread

2010 is proving to be a season to remember for picking games against the spread.  The mediocrity in the middle has made picking games much easier when using 10-point and 13-point Sweetheart Teasers.

 

As we informed our subscription customers before we sent out our picks for the week, we will be playing fewer games per week now that a winning season has been guaranteed. 

 

Our most recent picks went 4-1, bringing our total for the season to 60-24-3 for 71.4%.  We have been happy and pleased with our ability to average about 60% success over the course of time, so this is definitely an anomaly.  Let’s look at how the picks played out:

 

1. 10-point Teaser:

Boise State -24 ½ vs. Idaho, West Virginia +5 vs. Cincinnati, and Syracuse + 7 ½ vs. Rutgers

WON

 

We had Boise State picked to win by 40 points, and we were not the least bit worried about the Broncos covering at 24 and a hook.  The other two picks in the parlay let us play what we thought were solid favorites now getting points.  We figured that both Cincinnati and Rutgers would lose by more than a touchdown.

 

2. 13-point Teaser:

Northwestern +22 ½ vs. Iowa, Michigan Pk vs. Purdue, Indiana +34 ½ vs. Wisconsin, and Minnesota +33 ½ vs. Illinois

Lost

 

We really liked this Big Ten parlay.  We figured Northwestern would keep the game close against Iowa and lose by a touchdown or less, so when they upset the Hawkeyes, we were happy.  We figured that Michigan was 10-14 points better than Purdue, and even though Denard Robinson had a weak game, the Wolverines prevailed by 11.  We never figured that Indiana would lose by 63 to Wisconsin.  We had predicted the Badgers to win by three touchdowns, so this one lost it for us.  We called for Minnesota to battle Illinois to the wire and have a shot at the upset.  We were right, but it did not matter.  It may matter for Ron Zook.  Losses to Northwestern and Fresno State will send him to the unemployment line.

 

3. 13-point Teaser:

Oklahoma -2 vs. Texas Tech, Texas A&M +10 ½ vs. Baylor, Kansas +48 vs. Nebraska, and Colorado +11 vs. Iowa State

WON

 

We loved this Big 12-themed parlay.  We called for Oklahoma to beat Texas Tech by at least 20 points, and the Sooners put an exclamation point on the deLeaching of the Red Raiders.  We stated that it was our opinion that Texas A&M was still not getting enough respect and figured they would beat Baylor outright.  We believed that Nebraska would slaughter Kansas but by more like 35 and not 48 points.  When the Cornhuskers only won by 17, we were winners in this parlay.  As for Colorado, the Buffalos were two-point picks over Iowa State, and they were playing for deposed coach Dan Hawkins.  Getting 11 points was more than we could have hoped for, and CU won outright.

 

4. 10-point Teaser

Tennessee Titans & Miami Dolphins Over 33, Detroit Lions & Buffalo Bills Under 54, and Cincinnati Bengals & Indianapolis Colts Under 57

WON

 

This totals parlay of pro teams was our strategy pick of the week.  We figured that with Randy Moss added to a lineup that was already scoring close to 28 points per game, and with the Titans having problems stopping the running game, both teams would top 21 points.  Miami controlled the game after the first quarter, and more than enough points were scored.  The Lions-Bills pick was more due to climate forecast.  Heavy snow was in the forecast, and we figured the colder weather would make this a defensive struggle.  As for the Bengals-Colts game, we did not think Cincinnati could score 17 points in this game, and we did not see Indy getting to 40.  It was much closer than we thought it would be.

 

5. 10-point Teaser

Seattle Seahawks and Arizona Cardinals Over 31 ½, Dallas Cowboys & New York Giants Under 55 ½, and St. Louis Rams & San Francisco 49ers Over 28

WON

 

We called for the Seattle-Arizona game to be a shootout with little defense, and we were surprised with the ease in which Seattle won.  Still, this was an easy cover.  We must admit that we blew the Giants-Cowboys game.  We figured New York would win by 21 points, but we were okay because this game narrowly covered when Dallas reacted to Jason Garrett’s coaching.  We played the Rams-49ers game thinking that both teams would top 14 points and were happy to see both do exactly that.

 

Coaching Carousel

At this point in the season, we already know there are openings at Colorado and Minnesota.  It looks like there will be an openings at New Mexico and Vanderbilt, and there will be others that will become available in the next three weeks.  Here are the candidates we hear are in the mix for these jobs:

 

1. New Mexico—The Lobos were not happy with minor bowl appearances almost every season under Rocky Long.  They ended up with back-to-back double digit loss seasons with Mike Locksley.  Mike Leach has been rumored here for a month, but we believe Leach will spend one more season out of the mix before somebody is brave enough to approach him.  We believe that this job will go to a coordinator at the college level.  It is not a glamour job.  Basketball is king in Albuquerque.

 

2. Colorado—Several names have been mentioned in this search, including former coach Bill McCartney, former Oregon coach Mike Bellotti, Georgia coach Mark Richt, and Nebraska offensive coordinator Shawn Watson.  LSU coach Les Miles has been rumored by the Denver Post.  We believe that McCartney may have a legitimate chance to get back into coaching after having retired 17 years ago.  Dick Vermeil proved you can take off 17 years and come back to the game.  Bill Snyder has proved you can come back at age 70 and win.

 

3. Minnesota—San Diego State’s Brady Hoke and Mississippi State’s Dan Mullen, Miami coach Randy Shannon,  former coaches Phil Fulmer and Mark Mangino are on the radar in Minneapolis.  The Gophers are pleased with Tubby Smith on the hardwoods, and it could be that another former SEC coach joins him in the great white north.  We think Fulmer could be the leading candidate. 

 

4. Vanderbilt—It is becoming apparent that Robbie Caldwell will indeed be a one-season stopgap.  However, this school does not have much to offer a big-time coach.  Gary Barnett and Tyrone Willingham turned this job down the last time it was available.  The Commodores just don’t have what it takes to entice a big-time coach to commit coaching suicide here.  We believe that a head coach from the Football Championship Series will get this job if it becomes available.  James Madison coach Mickey Matthews is apparently on the radar.  Miami offensive coordinator Mark Whipple could emerge as a candidate in this job as well.  Navy coach Ken Niumatalolo could be a dark horse candidate, but the spread option may not be a great choice for the SEC.  SEC linebackers and defensive backs can make enough big plays to grind the option to a halt when it is the lone weapon.  That is why no teams use it today.

 

The PiRate Ratings

Once again, there is a change at the top.  Oregon lost to Cal in every regard except the final score.  Who ever heard of a false start on a placekicker?  Then, he misses a 29-yarder.  We believe Boise State would beat Cal by 21-28 points if the Broncos had played them.  So, Boise State is our new number one. 

 

Remember, our ratings look forward and not backward like the polls.  When you see a team ranked in our top 25 but with a losing record, it is because we believe that is where they belong in the mix for the next week’s games.  Georgia is 5-6, but we still have them as one of our top 25.  That is because they are only 12 points weaker than Alabama and Auburn on a neutral field.

 

Overall, except for the top five or six teams, this is the weakest college football season since 1984.  That year, Brigham Young won the national championship.  Could it be “the year” for Boise State or TCU?

 

NCAA Top 25 November 15, 2010
Rank Team PiRate Won Lost
1 Boise State 133.4 9 0
2 T C U 132.9 11 0
3 Oregon 132.1 10 0
4 Ohio State 126.8 9 1
5 Stanford 126.7 9 1
6 Alabama 126.5 8 2
7 Auburn 126.2 11 0
8 Oklahoma 125.8 8 2
9 Arkansas 125.3 8 2
10 Virginia Tech 122.4 8 2
11 Wisconsin 121.6 9 1
12 South Carolina 120.4 7 3
13 Nebraska 119.5 9 1
14 Miami (Fla) 118.9 7 3
15 L S U 118.8 9 1
16 Florida State 118.5 7 3
17 Texas A&M 118.1 7 3
18 Iowa 117.6 7 3
19 North Carolina 116.5 6 4
20 Arizona 116.1 7 3
21 Florida 116.0 6 4
22 Southern Cal 115.5 7 3
23 Georgia 115.5 5 6
24 Missouri 115.4 8 2
25 Oklahoma State 115.3 9 1
         
Note: Ratings rounded to one decimal point
even though I rank them to two decimal points

 

Atlantic Coast Conference
Atlantic Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Florida State 5-2 7-3 118.5
Clemson 3-4 5-5 112.5
North Carolina State 4-2 7-3 110.5
Boston College 3-4 5-5 104.7
Maryland 4-2 7-3 104.4
Wake Forest 1-6 2-8 90.2
       
Coastal Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Virginia Tech 6-0 8-2 122.4
Miami-FL 5-2 7-3 118.9
North Carolina 3-3 6-4 116.5
Georgia Tech 3-4 5-5 109.1
Duke 1-5 3-7 94.7
Virginia 1-5 4-6 94.5

 

 

Big East Conference
       
Team Conf. Overall Rating
West Virginia 2-2 6-3 114.0
Pittsburgh 3-1 5-4 110.4
Connecticut 2-2 5-4 105.3
South Florida 3-2 6-3 104.9
Louisville 2-3 5-5 103.3
Syracuse 4-2 7-3 102.2
Cincinnati 1-3 3-6 101.7
Rutgers 1-3 4-5 93.4

 

 

Big Ten
       
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Ohio State 5-1 9-1 126.8
Wisconsin 5-1 9-1 121.6
Iowa 4-2 7-3 117.6
Michigan State 5-1 9-1 111.5
Michigan 3-3 7-3 107.6
Penn State 3-3 6-4 105.4
Illinois 3-4 5-5 104.1
Northwestern 3-3 7-3 96.9
Minnesota 1-6 2-9 94.0
Purdue 2-4 4-6 91.2
Indiana 0-6 4-6 88.4

 

 

Big 12
North Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Nebraska 5-1 9-1 119.5
Missouri 4-2 8-2 115.4
Kansas State 3-4 6-4 101.6
Colorado 1-5 4-6 99.4
Iowa State 3-4 5-6 94.4
Kansas 1-5 3-7 89.6
       
South Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Oklahoma 4-2 8-2 125.8
Texas A&M 4-2 7-3 118.1
Oklahoma State 5-1 9-1 115.3
Baylor 4-3 7-4 106.5
Texas 2-5 4-6 105.7
Texas Tech 3-5 5-5 103.2

 

 

Conference USA
East Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Central Florida 5-1 7-3 102.3
Southern Mississippi 4-2 7-3 96.9
East Carolina 5-1 6-4 93.7
U A B 2-4 3-7 87.0
Marshall 3-3 4-6 84.2
Memphis 0-6 1-9 68.9
       
West Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Tulsa 4-2 7-3 98.7
Houston 4-3 5-5 98.2
S M U 4-2 5-5 91.6
U T E P 3-4 6-5 85.4
Rice 1-5 2-8 80.5
Tulane 2-4 4-6 78.3

 

 

Independents
       
Team   Overall Rating
Notre Dame   5-5 106.2
Navy   7-3 103.0
Army   6-4 89.0

 

 

Mid American Conference
East Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Temple 5-1 8-2 96.5
Ohio U 5-1 7-3 90.4
Miami (O) 5-1 6-4 86.4
Kent St. 3-3 4-6 84.2
Bowling Green 1-5 2-8 77.7
Buffalo 1-5 2-8 73.1
Akron 0-6 0-10 65.2
       
West Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Northern Illinois 6-0 8-2 101.6
Toledo 5-1 6-4 87.9
Central Michigan 2-5 3-8 84.5
Western Michigan 3-3 4-6 83.1
Ball State 3-4 4-7 76.2
Eastern Michigan 1-5 1-9 68.3

 

 

Mountain West Conference
       
Team Conf. Overall Rating
T C U 7-0 11-0 132.9
Utah 5-1 8-2 112.3
Air Force 4-3 7-4 106.3
B Y U 4-2 5-5 103.9
S. D. State 4-2 7-3 101.8
UNLV 2-4 2-8 85.0
Colo. State 2-5 3-8 84.6
Wyoming 0-7 2-9 84.2
New Mexico 1-5 1-9 75.7

 

 

Pac-10 Conference
       
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Oregon 7-0 10-0 132.1
Stanford 6-1 9-1 126.7
Arizona 4-3 7-3 116.1
Southern Cal 4-3 7-3 115.5
California 3-4 5-5 113.2
Oregon St. 3-3 4-5 109.7
Arizona St. 2-5 4-6 109.2
U C L A 2-4 4-5 106.1
Washington 2-4 3-6 103.5
Washington State 1-7 2-9 94.4

 

 

Southeastern Conference
East Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
South Carolina 5-3 7-3 120.4
Florida 4-4 6-4 116.0
Georgia 3-5 5-6 115.5
Kentucky 2-5 6-5 106.9
Tennessee 1-5 4-6 105.2
Vanderbilt 1-6 2-8 88.7
       
West Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Alabama 5-2 8-2 126.5
Auburn 7-0 11-0 126.2
Arkansas 4-2 8-2 125.3
L S U 5-1 9-1 118.8
Mississippi State 3-3 7-3 113.9
Ole Miss 1-5 4-6 100.1

 

 

Sunbelt Conference
       
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Florida International 4-1 4-5 86.6
Arkansas State 4-3 4-6 83.8
Troy 4-2 5-4 82.9
North Texas 3-4 3-7 80.2
Middle Tennessee 2-3 3-6 80.2
Florida Atlantic 3-3 4-5 78.5
U. of Louisiana 2-4 2-8 78.3
Louisiana-Monroe 3-3 4-6 77.7
Western Kentucky 2-4 2-8 75.4

 

 

Western Athletic Conference
       
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Boise State 5-0 9-0 133.4
Nevada 4-1 9-1 110.3
Hawaii 5-1 7-3 104.9
Fresno State 4-2 6-3 98.9
Louisiana Tech 3-3 4-6 94.0
Utah State 2-4 4-6 89.5
Idaho 1-4 4-6 85.8
San Jose State 0-5 1-9 78.2
New Mexico State 1-5 2-8 73.5

 

 

This Week’s Games–PiRate Ratings
Home Team Advantage Added (2-5 points)    
       
Tuesday, November 16      
Favorite Underdog Spread Score
TEMPLE Ohio U 9.1 31-22
       
Wednesday, November 17      
Favorite Underdog Spread Score
Miami (O) AKRON 19.2 31-12
TOLEDO Bowling Green 12.7 37-24
       
Thursday, November 18      
Favorite Underdog Spread Score
WASHINGTON U c l a 0.4 28-28 to ot
Air Force U N L V 18.3 35-17
       
Friday, November 19      
Favorite Underdog Spread Score
BOISE STATE Fresno State 38.0 55-17
       
Saturday, November 20      
Favorite Underdog Spread Score
COLORADO Kansas State 0.8 27-26
Pittsburgh SOUTH FLORIDA 2.5 27-24
GEORGIA TECH Duke 17.4 44-27
Missouri IOWA STATE 18.0 38-20
Penn State Indiana    (Landover, MD) 18.5 33-14
West Virginia LOUISVILLE 7.7 28-20
Middle Tennessee WESTERN KY. 1.8 33-31
BOSTON COLLEGE Virginia 13.2 27-14
Florida State MARYLAND 11.1 31-20
MICHIGAN STATE Purdue 23.3 40-17
Wisconsin MICHIGAN 11.0 38-27
NORTH CAROLINA N. Carolina State 8.5 28-19
Clemson WAKE FOREST 19.8 34-14
Connecticut SYRACUSE 0.1 20-20 to ot
TULSA U t e p 16.3 38-22
Tennessee VANDERBILT 14.5 35-20
Oklahoma BAYLOR 16.3 37-21
East Carolina RICE 10.2 41-31
TEXAS A&M Nebraska 1.6 26-24
TEXAS Florida Atlantic 30.2 37-7
Florida Int’l LOUISIANA-LAFAYETTE 5.3 31-26
Arkansas MISSISSIPPI STATE 8.4 38-30
CINCINNATI Rutgers 11.3 35-24
Ohio State IOWA 6.2 24-18
Oklahoma State KANSAS 22.7 33-10
Virginia Tech MIAMI-FL 0.5 25-24
LOUISIANA-MONROE North Texas 0.0 30-30 to ot
SOUTH CAROLINA Troy 40.5 55-14
Illinois N’western (Wrigley Field) 6.2 34-28
Northern Illinois BALL STATE 22.4 38-16
BUFFALO Eastern Michigan 7.8 35-27
WESTERN MICHIGAN Kent State 1.9 33-31
WYOMING Colorado State 2.6 31-28
UTAH STATE Idaho 6.7 38-31
S M U Marshall 10.4 34-24
Stanford CALIFORNIA 11.5 28-16
NAVY Arkansas State 22.2 49-27
Central Florida TULANE 21.0 38-17
U A B Memphis 21.1 40-19
NEVADA New Mexico State 39.8 47-7
B Y U New Mexico 31.2 41-10
Notre Dame Army  (Yankee Stadium) 17.2 27-10
SOUTHERN MISS Houston 1.7 33-31
L S U Ole Miss 21.7 35-13
Southern Cal OREGON STATE 2.8 30-27
Utah SAN DIEGO STATE 7.5 38-30
HAWAII San Jose State 30.2 47-17

 

 

This Week’s Games–PiRate Ratings
Home Team Advantage Added (2-5 points)    
       
Tuesday, November 16      
Favorite Underdog Mean Biased
TEMPLE Ohio U 31-21 26-24
       
Wednesday, November 17      
Favorite Underdog Mean Biased
Miami (O) AKRON 34-21 27-13
TOLEDO Bowling Green 40-28 38-20
       
Thursday, November 18      
Favorite Underdog Mean Biased
U c l a WASHINGTON 30-30 to ot 27-24
Air Force U N L V 35-17 35-14
       
Friday, November 19      
Favorite Underdog Mean Biased
BOISE STATE Fresno State 47-20 48-17
       
Saturday, November 20      
Favorite Underdog Mean Biased
Kansas State COLORADO 28-23 23-26
Pittsburgh SOUTH FLORIDA 24-21 20-26
GEORGIA TECH Duke 38-28 37-28
Missouri IOWA STATE 35-24 34-17
Penn State Indiana    (Landover, MD) 27-14 41-17
West Virginia LOUISVILLE 24-21 20-21
WESTERN KY. Middle Tennessee 30-27 31-28
BOSTON COLLEGE Virginia 25-16 24-17
Florida State MARYLAND 27-24 23-26
MICHIGAN STATE Purdue 38-16 37-16
Wisconsin MICHIGAN 38-31 44-31
NORTH CAROLINA N. Carolina State 25-24 24-21
Clemson WAKE FOREST 35-21 38-17
SYRACUSE Connecticut 20-14 20-16
TULSA U t e p 41-24 45-28
Tennessee VANDERBILT 28-20 41-13
Oklahoma BAYLOR 38-30 42-24
East Carolina RICE 47-35 52-21
Nebraska TEXAS A&M 31-30 24-30
TEXAS Florida Atlantic 28-9 31-20
Florida Int’l LOUISIANA-LAFAYETTE 38-30 41-23
Arkansas MISSISSIPPI STATE 31-27 35-20
CINCINNATI Rutgers 28-24 28-27
Ohio State IOWA 26-23 30-20
Oklahoma State KANSAS 40-17 45-13
Virginia Tech MIAMI-FL 27-27 to ot 24-20
LOUISIANA-MONROE North Texas 34-31 35-33
SOUTH CAROLINA Troy 40-14 45-20
Northwestern Illinois  (Wrigley Field) 28-27 35-31
Northern Illinois BALL STATE 44-24 48 -16
BUFFALO Eastern Michigan 34-27 34-30
WESTERN MICHIGAN Kent State 30-27 31-27
WYOMING Colorado St. 28-27 21-27
UTAH STATE Idaho 34-32 40-30
S M U Marshall 35-26 35-28
Stanford CALIFORNIA 28-19 27-20
NAVY Arkansas State 41-24 42-24
Central Florida TULANE 38-24 38-24
U A B Memphis 45-28 44-24
NEVADA New Mexico State 52-16 51-17
B Y U New Mexico 34-7 47-17
Notre Dame Army  (Yankee Stadium) 26-17 28-17
SOUTHERN MISS Houston 37-31 37-32
L S U Ole Miss 35-13 27-10
Southern Cal OREGON STATE 31-26 38-20
Utah SAN DIEGO STATE 34-30 31-34
HAWAII San Jose State 49-20 56-17

 

 

Looking At The Bowls

Pity the bowls with Pac-10 tie-ins.  It looks like Oregon will play in the National Championship Game, and Stanford could easily earn an at-large BCS Bowl Bid.  Only Arizona and California could be eligible for all the remaining bowls.  Southern Cal is not eligible, and it looks like a strong possibility that Arizona State, Oregon State, UCLA, and Washington will not become bowl eligible.

 

The Big Ten could be looking at two BCS bowl teams, so they could come up one team shy in meeting its bowl obligations.

 

The Mid-American Conference will have five bowl eligible teams with seven or more wins, so expect the MAC to get two extra bids as at-large teams.

 

Army needs one win to virtually guarantee the Black Knights a bowl bid.

 

The SEC could find itself with just one BCS bowl member if Arkansas beats LSU.  If Georgia beats Georgia Tech and Tennessee beats Vanderbilt and Kentucky, 10 teams could be available for nine bowl spots.  Expect a 6-6 Kentucky team to become the top at-large candidate from among the 6-6 teams.

 

We believe the Big East and Atlantic Coast Conference could produce one extra bowl eligible team than they have spots available, so those two teams would become very attractive.

 

[Teams in brackets are at-large selections]
Bowl Conference Team Conference Team
New Mexico MWC #4 or (5) [Connecticut 6-6] WAC (#3?) [Miami (O) 8-5]
Humanitarian MAC #3 Toledo 8-4 WAC #(1) or 2 Nevada 10-2
New Orleans Sunbelt #(1) or 2 Fla. Int’l 7-5 C-USA #5 SMU 6-6
St. Petersburg Big East #6 Pittsburgh 7-5 C-USA #4-6 Sou. Miss 8-4
Las Vegas MWC #1 Utah 9-3 Pac 10 #5 [Temple 9-3]
Poinsettia MWC #2 S. Diego St. 9-3 Navy or WAC Navy 8-4
Hawaii Hawaii/WAC #3/4 Hawaii 10-3 C-USA #2-6 Central Fla. 9-4
Little Caesar’s Pizza Big 10 #8/SBC [Boston Coll. 6-6] MAC #1-2 N. Illinois 11-2
Independence ACC #7 Clemson 6-6 MWC #3 Air Force 8-4
Champs Sports Big East #2 S. Florida 8-4 ACC #3 Florida St. 8-4
Insight Big 12 #4 Missouri 10-2 Big 10 #4 or 5 Northwestern 8-4
Military ACC #8 Georgia Tech 6-6 C-USA #6 E. Carolina 8-4
Texas Big 12 #6-7 Texas Tech 7-5 Big 10 #6-7 Illinois 6-6
Alamo Big 12 #3 Oklahoma 9-3 Pac 10 #2 Arizona 8-4
Armed Forces C-USA #3-4 UTEP 6-6 MWC #3-5/Army BYU 6-6
Pinstripe Big East #3-4 Notre Dame 6-6 Big 12 #6-7 Baylor 7-5
Music City SEC # 7 Tennessee 6-6 ACC #6 N. C. State 8-5
Holiday Big 12 #5 Texas A&M 9-3 Pac 10 #3 California 6-6
Meineke Car Care ACC #4-5 Maryland 8-4 Big East #3-4 West Va. 7-5
Sun ACC #4 or 5 Miami (F) 8-4 Pac 10 #4 [Kentucky 6-6]
Liberty SEC #8 or 9 Florida 7-5 C-USA #1 Tulsa 10-3
Chick-fil-A SEC #3-6 Arkansas 10-2 ACC #2 N. Carolina 8-4
Dallas Football Classic Big 10 #6-7 Michigan 7-5 Big 12 #8/CUSA Kansas St.7-5
Outback SEC #3-6 E S. Carolina 9-4 Big 10 #3 Penn St. 8-4
Capital One Big 10 #2 Mich. St. 10-2 SEC #2 Alabama 10-2
Gator Big 10 #4 or 5 Iowa 8-4 SEC #6 Miss. St. 8-4
Rose BCS Pac10 Stanford 11-1 BCS Big 10 Wisconsin 11-1
Fiesta BCS Big 12 Oklahoma St. 12-1 BCS At-Large Syracuse 9-3
Orange BCS ACC Va. Tech 11-2 BCS At-Large TCU 12-0
Sugar BCS SEC Auburn 12-1 BCS At-Large Ohio St. 11-1
GoDaddy.com Sunbelt # 2 Troy 6-6 MAC #1 or 2 Ohio U 8-4
Cotton Big 12 #2 Nebraska 10-3 SEC #3-6 W LSU 10-2
Birmingham Big East #5 Louisville 7-5 SEC #8 or 9 Georgia 6-6
Kraft Fight Hunger Pac 10 #6 [Army 7-5] WAC #1 Fresno St. 7-5
National Championship *** BCS #1 *** Oregon 12-0 *** BCS #2 *** Boise St. 12-0
         
         
         

 

November 8, 2010

PiRate Ratings For College Football: November 9-13, 2010

We’re In The Money

2010 has been a banner year for the PiRate Rankings.  Our picks against the spread for our customers have been hitting at better than 66.7% all year, but still we were in total shock when this past weekend’s games brought us an incredible 9-1-1 record.  For the year, our record moves to 56-23-3 for an incredible 70.9%.

 

It’s always nice to hear from you if you purchased our picks for the season back in August.  Why have we been so successful this year?  We believe it is the incredible parity in the NFL and a great deal of mediocrity in the NCAA.  So many of the NFL games have been close, and so many of the college teams after the top four or five are weaker than in past years.  So, when you play a 13-point teaser, it is like having gold in your hands if you know a little about numbers and football percentages.  Let’s take a look at our picks from this past weekend.

 

1. 13-point Teaser

Air Force +6 vs. Army, Miami (Fl) +5 ½ vs. Maryland, Texas A&M +16 ½ vs. Oklahoma, and Kansas State +16 ½ vs. Texas

WON

We had Air Force rated as a solid favorite over Army.  The Black Knights are enjoying their best season in years, but they do not have enough offense to face a potent Air Force team.  We figured the Falcons would win by 10-12 points, and even that was an understatement.

 

We felt that Miami had about a 65% chance of beating Maryland outright, so getting 5 ½ made us feel like it was a 95% chance of covering.  Our statement to our subscribers was, “Maryland’s record is too deceiving.  They could drop four in a row to finish 6-6.”

 

We are not about to tell you that we called for A&M to beat Oklahoma by two touchdowns, but we told our subscribers that, “Oklahoma cannot win this game by more than 10 points.”

 

As for the Kansas State-Texas game, we did call for KSU to win outright.  Getting 16 ½ points was pure gravy.

 

2. 13-point Teaser

Nevada +2 vs. Idaho, California -1 vs. Washington State, Stanford +4 vs. Arizona, and TCU +8 ½ vs. Utah

WON

We went with four clear favorites over four weaker opponents and got points in three of the four plays in the parlay.  We felt that all four would win by double digits, and even though Cal only won by seven, we easily won this teaser.

 

3. 13-point Teaser

Indiana +27 vs. Iowa, Michigan +6 ½ vs. Illinois, Wisconsin -10 vs. Purdue, and Arkansas +14 vs. South Carolina

WON

We were wrong in predicting how the Iowa-Indiana game would turn out, but it still won for us.  We expected a 35-24 type game and not the low scoring affair that happened.  As for Michigan-Illinois, we had to sweat this out for a while.  We expected the shootout, but we thought Michigan would win 42-31.  Tate Forcier pulled this one out for us.  He has to be the best number two QB in the nation.  Wisconsin needed to go well into the 3rd quarter before taking over this game, but they won by the same 21 points we predicted.  We called for Arkansas to outscore South Carolina.  We were looking for a 35-31 win, so the 21-point blowout was just fine for us.

 

4. Florida -14 vs. Vanderbilt

WON

We consider ourselves experts in the plight of poor Vanderbilt, as our founder grew up watching them play week after week.  He told us that Vanderbilt would be down 35 points by halftime, and he was off by six.  It was 41-0!

 

5. Louisiana Tech Pk vs. Fresno State

Loss

This is the one game we lost, and we thought it was one of our strongest plays of the week.  This is one of Fresno’s weaker teams in this run of winning years.  Thinking that a long trip to the Deep South might be a little too much, we went with Tech to win and missed it.

 

6. Tennessee -20 ½ vs. Memphis

WON

Again, we deferred to our founder and relied on his information in the Volunteer State.  He believed that Tennessee was better than an average C-USA team, and the average C-USA team was more than three touchdowns better than Memphis.  He also told us that Tennessee is 10-points better in November than in any other month.  That was good enough for us.

 

7. Buffalo Bills +3 vs. Chicago Bears

Push (Tie)

The Bears edged the Bills by a field goal to make this game a push.  We felt that Buffalo would break through for its first win playing on foreign soil.

 

8. Buffalo Bills & Chicago Bears OVER 40 ½

WON

We won the other part of this game by predicting it to be a 28-24 final.  The 41 points was a razor thin margin to win by, but we have lost our share of games by a point or half-point in the past, and those still counted as losses.

 

9. Arizona Cardinals +8 vs. Minnesota Vikings

WON

With the Vikings full of dissension, and Brett Favre tossing more interceptions than touchdowns, we thought the Minnesota defense would give up too many points, even to the lowly Cardinals.  Favre had a great day, but he tossed two interceptions.  The game stayed close, and Arizona almost won it outright.

 

10. Tampa Bay Buccaneers & Atlanta Falcons OVER 44 ½

WON

We called this game almost exactly correct.  We called for the Falcons to win 28-24, but even though the actual final was a bit lower, it covered the total.

 

11. Green Bay Packers -7 ½ vs. Dallas Cowboys

WON

This was a gift from the odds makers.  Dallas is as weak as Carolina, but the public perception is that they are not.  Without Tony Romo, the spread should have been 13 ½ or even more. 

 

A New Number One

The PiRate Rankings have a new number one team.  TCU vaulted to first place after beating an undefeated Top 10 team on the road by 40 points.  This was a Utah team that proved it could beat Iowa State in Ames by several touchdowns more than Nebraska was able to do.

 

The Horned Frogs, unlike Auburn and Oregon, are equally strong on both offense and defense.  Boise State is proving to be the same.  We believe that both TCU and Boise State would defeat Oregon and Auburn in a national semifinal if there were playoffs.  The two non-automatic qualifiers are the two best teams in the land, even if our own PiRate Ratings has Oregon rated a little above Boise State.

 

The current BCS is just not acceptable as a real method of choosing the two best teams.  The two best teams should be the two teams playing the best.  Oregon and Auburn are both one half of a real juggernaut.  Neither has a championship defense.  Boise State and TCU have both a championship offense and defense.

 

What else do the MWC and WAC undefeated teams have to prove?  Boise State beat Oklahoma in the Fiesta Bowl, and Utah massacred Alabama in the Sugar Bowl when they were given the chance.  Previously, Utah won its other BCS Bowl game in the 2004 season.

 

Here is where the BCS is flawed.  You have heard us say this before.  If you took the entire First and Second Team All-American squads and put them in a San Jose State uniform, and the Spartans went 12-0, they would not get the chance to play for the National Championship, even though it would be clear that they were 21 points better than any other team.  The National Championship Game should have the two best teams, or it is bogus.

 

The NCAA elite do not want to include the TCU’s and Boise State’s.  It is a corrupt system, and the PiRates are all about waging war against elitist corruption.  Wait until you see what we dictate for the bowls.  It is the only way to end this primitive system for selecting a national champion.

 

NCAA Top 25 November 8, 2010
Rank Team PiRate Won Lost
1 T C U 134.5 9 0
2 Oregon 134.3 9 0
3 Boise State 132.2 8 0
4 Stanford 127.5 8 1
5 Ohio State 125.8 8 1
6t Arkansas 125.8 7 2
6t Alabama 125.8 7 2
8 Auburn 125.1 10 0
9 Oklahoma 123.2 7 2
10 Iowa 121.1 7 2
11 Virginia Tech 120.9 7 2
12 Nebraska 120.3 8 1
13 Florida State 119.1 6 3
14 Florida 119.0 6 3
15 Wisconsin 118.6 8 1
16 L S U 117.0 8 1
17 Arizona 117.6 7 2
18 North Carolina 117.5 6 3
19 Texas A&M 116.8 6 3
20 South Carolina 116.8 6 3
21 Georgia 116.6 5 5
22 Utah 116.0 8 1
23 Miami (Fla) 115.9 6 3
24 Missouri 115.9 7 2
25 Oregon State 115.5 4 4
         
Note: Ratings rounded to one decimal point
even though I rank them to two decimal points

 

Atlantic Coast Conference
Atlantic Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Florida State 4-2 6-3 119.1
Clemson 3-3 5-4 111.9
North Carolina State 3-2 6-3 107.9
Boston College 2-4 4-5 105.0
Maryland 3-2 6-3 102.3
Wake Forest 1-5 2-7 93.3
       
Coastal Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Virginia Tech 5-0 7-2 120.9
North Carolina 3-2 6-3 117.5
Miami-FL 4-2 6-3 115.9
Georgia Tech 3-3 5-4 112.6
Virginia 1-4 4-5 96.1
Duke 1-4 3-6 94.4

 

Big East Conference
       
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Pittsburgh 3-0 5-3 111.5
West Virginia 1-2 5-3 111.5
Cincinnati 1-2 3-5 105.0
Connecticut 1-2 4-4 104.2
Louisville 2-2 5-4 104.0
South Florida 2-2 5-3 103.7
Syracuse 3-2 6-3 101.2
Rutgers 1-2 4-4 93.9

 

Big Ten
       
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Ohio State 4-1 8-1 125.8
Iowa 4-1 7-2 121.1
Wisconsin 4-1 8-1 118.6
Michigan State 5-1 9-1 111.5
Michigan 2-3 6-3 106.7
Penn State 3-2 6-3 106.1
Illinois 3-3 5-4 106.1
Northwestern 2-3 6-3 95.9
Indiana 0-5 4-5 92.2
Purdue 2-3 4-5 91.6
Minnesota 0-6 1-9 91.5

 

Big 12
North Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Nebraska 4-1 8-1 120.3
Missouri 3-2 7-2 115.9
Kansas State 3-3 6-3 101.1
Colorado 0-5 3-6 97.8
Iowa State 3-3 5-5 96.0
Kansas 1-4 3-6 88.8
       
South Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Oklahoma 3-2 7-2 123.2
Texas A&M 3-2 6-3 116.8
Oklahoma State 4-1 8-1 112.8
Texas 2-4 4-5 108.7
Baylor 4-2 7-3 107.8
Texas Tech 3-4 5-4 105.5

 

Conference USA
East Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Central Florida 5-0 7-2 104.7
Southern Mississippi 3-2 6-3 94.5
East Carolina 4-1 5-4 93.0
U A B 2-3 3-6 87.7
Marshall 2-3 3-6 84.5
Memphis 0-5 1-8 68.1
       
West Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Houston 4-2 5-4 99.4
Tulsa 3-2 6-3 98.0
S M U 4-2 5-5 91.6
U T E P 3-4 6-4 84.4
Rice 1-4 2-7 80.8
Tulane 1-4 3-6 77.7

 

Independents
       
Team   Overall Rating
Navy   6-3 105.4
Notre Dame   4-5 103.5
Army   5-4 88.2

 

Mid American Conference
East Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Temple 5-1 8-2 96.5
Ohio U 5-1 7-3 90.4
Miami (O) 4-1 5-4 86.5
Kent St. 3-3 4-5 85.0
Bowling Green 1-4 2-7 77.6
Buffalo 1-4 2-7 76.4
Akron 0-6 0-10 65.2
       
West Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Northern Illinois 5-0 7-2 98.6
Toledo 5-0 6-3 88.2
Western Michigan 2-3 3-6 83.7
Central Michigan 2-5 3-7 81.6
Ball State 2-4 3-7 73.9
Eastern Michigan 1-4 1-8 67.7

 

Mountain West Conference
       
Team Conf. Overall Rating
T C U 6-0 10-0 134.5
Utah 5-1 8-1 116.0
Air Force 3-3 6-4 106.8
B Y U 3-2 4-5 99.6
S. D. State 4-1 7-2 99.2
Colo. State 2-4 3-7 87.9
Wyoming 0-6 2-8 87.7
UNLV 1-4 1-8 81.5
New Mexico 1-4 1-8 74.7

 

Pac-10 Conference
       
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Oregon 6-0 9-0 134.3
Stanford 5-1 8-1 127.5
Arizona 4-2 7-2 117.6
Oregon St. 3-2 4-4 115.5
Southern Cal 3-3 6-3 114.0
California 3-3 5-4 110.7
Arizona St. 2-4 4-5 107.9
U C L A 2-4 4-5 106.1
Washington 2-4 3-6 103.5
Washington State 0-7 1-9 90.6

 

Southeastern Conference
East Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Florida 4-3 6-3 119.0
South Carolina 4-3 6-3 116.8
Georgia 3-4 5-5 116.6
Kentucky 1-5 5-5 106.7
Tennessee 0-5 3-6 101.2
Vanderbilt 1-5 2-7 88.9
       
West Division      
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Arkansas 4-2 7-2 125.8
Alabama 4-2 7-2 125.8
Auburn 6-0 10-0 125.1
L S U 5-1 8-1 117.7
Mississippi State 3-2 7-2 114.6
Ole Miss 1-4 4-5 102.6

 

Sunbelt Conference
       
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Troy 4-1 5-3 87.4
Arkansas State 4-2 4-5 85.6
Florida International 3-1 3-5 83.1
Middle Tennessee 2-2 3-5 82.4
Louisiana-Monroe 3-3 4-5 78.8
Florida Atlantic 2-3 3-5 78.7
U. of Louisiana 2-3 2-7 78.1
North Texas 2-4 2-7 78.0
Western Kentucky 1-4 1-8 73.3

 

Western Athletic Conference
       
Team Conf. Overall Rating
Boise State 4-0 8-0 132.2
Nevada 3-1 8-1 111.3
Hawaii 5-1 7-3 104.9
Fresno State 4-1 6-2 97.9
Louisiana Tech 2-3 3-6 93.4
Utah State 1-4 3-6 89.4
Idaho 1-3 4-5 87.0
San Jose State 0-4 1-8 78.3
New Mexico State 1-4 2-7 74.1

 

This Week’s Games–PiRate Ratings
Home Team Advantage Added (2-5 points)    
       
Tuesday, November 2      
Favorite Underdog Spread Score
NORTHERN ILLINOIS Toledo 13.4 34-21
       
Wednesday, November 3      
Favorite Underdog Spread Score
Miami (O) BOWLING GREEN 6.4 26-20
       
Thursday, November 4      
Favorite Underdog Spread Score
Pittsburgh CONNECTICUT 4.3 24-20
East Carolina U A B 2.3 35-33
       
Friday, November 5      
Favorite Underdog Spread Score
BUFFALO Ball State 5.5 23-17
Boise State IDAHO 42.2 52-10
       
Saturday, November 6      
Favorite Underdog Spread Score
AUBURN Georgia 11.5 42-30
ARKANSAS U t e p 44.9 62-17
Stanford ARIZONA STATE 16.1 40-24
Oregon CALIFORNIA 23.6 44-20
COLORADO Iowa State 4.8 35-30
FLORIDA STATE Clemson 10.2 34-24
FLORIDA South Carolina 5.2 26-21
Miami (Fl) GEORGIA TECH 0.3 27-27 to ot
Iowa NORTHWESTERN 22.2 42-20
KENTUCKY Vanderbilt 20.8 38-17
LOUISVILLE South Florida 3.3 24-21
MISSOURI Kansas State 17.8 35-17
Boston College DUKE 7.6 31-23
N. C. STATE Wake Forest 17.1 35-18
Virginia Tech NORTH CAROLINA 0.4 20-20 to ot
NEBRASKA Kansas 34.5 45-10
Syracuse RUTGERS 4.3 24-20
OHIO STATE Penn State 22.7 33-10
OKLAHOMA Texas Tech 20.7 48-27
OREGON STATE Washington State 27.9 38-10
Texas A&M BAYLOR 6.5 34-27
Oklahoma State TEXAS 1.1 35-34
Maryland VIRGINIA 3.2 27-24
WISCONSIN Indiana 29.2 42-13
MARSHALL Memphis 19.4 35-16
WEST VIRGINIA Cincinnati 9.5 27-17
ALABAMA Mississippi State 14.2 28-14
ILLINOIS Minnesota 17.6 38-20
ARKANSAS STATE Western Kentucky 14.8 42-27
FLORIDA ATLANTIC Louisiana-Lafayette 4.1 27-23
MIDDLE TENNESSEE North Texas 7.4 34-27
Michigan PURDUE 12.1 38-26
TENNESSEE Ole Miss 1.6 28-26
TROY Florida Int’l 7.3 34-27
CENTRAL FLORIDA Southern Miss 13.2 41-28
B y u COLORADO STATE 8.7 37-28
Army KENT STATE 0.2 20-20 to ot
WESTERN MICHIGAN Eastern Michigan 18.5 40-21
Utah NOTRE DAME 8.5 40-31
NAVY Central Michigan 26.8 47-20
Rice TULANE 0.1 30-30 to ot
T C U San Diego State 38.8 49-10
Louisiana Tech NEW MEXICO STATE 16.3 28-12
AIR FORCE New Mexico 35.1 45-10
ARIZONA Southern Cal 6.6 31-24
Utah State SAN JOSE STATE 8.6 37-28
L S U Louisiana-Monroe 41.9 45-3
HOUSTON Tulsa 4.4 42-38
Nevada FRESNO STATE 10.4 41-31
Wyoming U N L V 3.7 28-24

 

This Week’s Games–PiRate Ratings
Home Team Advantage Added (2-5 points)    
       
Tuesday, November 2      
Favorite Underdog Mean Biased
NORTHERN ILLINOIS Toledo 31-21 30-22
       
Wednesday, November 3      
Favorite Underdog Mean Biased
Miami (O) BOWLING GREEN 28-28 to ot 34-13
       
Thursday, November 4      
Favorite Underdog Mean Biased
Pittsburgh CONNECTICUT 24-16 23-17
East Carolina U A B 38-34 38-33
       
Friday, November 5      
Favorite Underdog Mean Biased
BUFFALO Ball State 26-21 27-12
Boise State IDAHO 41-12 56-14
       
Saturday, November 6      
Favorite Underdog Mean Biased
AUBURN Georgia 37-27 41-27
ARKANSAS U t e p 49-20 52-17
Stanford ARIZONA STATE 38-28 38-14
Oregon CALIFORNIA 41-24 54-18
Iowa State COLORADO 31-28 30-20
FLORIDA STATE Clemson 28-20 22-20
FLORIDA South Carolina 23-17 24-17
Miami (Fl) GEORGIA TECH 31-27 24-28
Iowa NORTHWESTERN 31-17 27-16
KENTUCKY Vanderbilt 35-21 42-20
LOUISVILLE South Florida 27-23 27-24
MISSOURI Kansas State 33-24 35-24
Boston College DUKE 29-26 20-23
N. C. STATE Wake Forest 40-18 28-13
Virginia Tech NORTH CAROLINA 27-24 28-24
NEBRASKA Kansas 39-7 45-17
Syracuse RUTGERS 28-26 26-27
OHIO STATE Penn State 26-10 24-14
OKLAHOMA Texas Tech 33-20 34-20
OREGON STATE Washington State 35-10 31-10
Texas A&M BAYLOR 34-32 35-31
Oklahoma State TEXAS 33-24 38-22
Maryland VIRGINIA 24-21 25-26
WISCONSIN Indiana 40-17 38-21
MARSHALL Memphis 37-21 37-19
WEST VIRGINIA Cincinnati 24-17 28-17
ALABAMA Mississippi State 23-10 20-10
ILLINOIS Minnesota 34-10 34-20
ARKANSAS STATE Western Kentucky 38-23 40-24
FLORIDA ATLANTIC Louisiana-Lafayette 25-17 21-18
MIDDLE TENNESSEE North Texas 35-30 33-27
Michigan PURDUE 34-25 38-23
TENNESSEE Ole Miss 28-26 31-26
TROY Florida Int’l 34-26 34-24
CENTRAL FLORIDA Southern Miss 35-23 35-26
B y u COLORADO STATE 34-28 41-22
Army KENT STATE 21-20 27-16
WESTERN MICHIGAN Eastern Michigan 35-17 33-23
Utah NOTRE DAME 34-24 34-21
NAVY Central Michigan 44-24 44-20
TULANE Rice 30-25 31-21
T C U San Diego State 38-10 45-10
Louisiana Tech NEW MEXICO STATE 23-10 25-19
AIR FORCE New Mexico 35-3 34-13
ARIZONA Southern Cal 31-26 30-23
Utah State SAN JOSE STATE 34-30 38-28
L S U Louisiana-Monroe 40-7 37-9
HOUSTON Tulsa 38-38 to ot 45-41
Nevada FRESNO STATE 38-30 40-30
Wyoming U N L V 31-28 26-28

 

The Bowls

A lot of the bowls are going to be games with 7-5 and 6-6 mediocrity this year.  Unless it is your team playing, there will be no need to tune any of them in.  If the bowls were instead used to host playoff rounds, with 11 bowls being used for 12 teams, then the remaining bowls could then invite teams with eight and nine wins instead of six and seven.

 

Here is our look at what we think will happen, but it is not what we think should happen.  If you ask us today, Boise State and TCU should meet for a third consecutive bowl season with the winner being declared National Champion.

 

Bowl Conference Prediction Conference Prediction
New Mexico MWC #4 or (5) B Y U 6-6 WAC (#3?) [Ohio U 8-4]
Humanitarian MAC #3 Miami (O) 8-5 WAC #(1) or 2 Nevada 10-2
New Orleans Sunbelt #(1) or 2 Troy 7-5 C-USA #5 UTEP 6-6
St. Petersburg Big East #6 Connecticut 6-6 C-USA #4-6 Sou. Miss 7-5
Las Vegas MWC #1 Utah 11-1 Pac 10 #5 Oregon St. 6-6
Poinsettia MWC #2 San Diego St. 8-4 Navy or WAC Navy 9-3
Hawaii Hawaii/WAC #3/4 Hawaii 10-3 C-USA #2-6 E C U 8-4
Little Caesar’s Pizza Big 10 #8/SBC Northwestern 6-6 MAC #1-2 N. Illinois 11-2
Independence ACC #7 Georgia Tech 6-6 MWC #3 Air Force 8-4
Champs Sports Big East #2 S. Florida 7-5 ACC #3 Florida St. 8-5
Insight Big 12 #4 Oklahoma 9-3 Big 10 #4 or 5 Mich. St. 10-2
Military ACC #8 Maryland 6-6 C-USA #6 S M U 6-6
Texas Big 12 #6-7 Texas Tech 7-5 Big 10 #6-7 Illinois 8-4
Alamo Big 12 #3 Missouri 10-2 Pac 10 #2 Arizona 9-3
Armed Forces C-USA #3-4 Tulsa 8-4 MWC #3-5/Army Army 6-6
Pinstripe Big East #3-4 Syracuse 7-5 Big 12 #6-7 Baylor 7-5
Music City SEC # 7 Tennessee 6-6 ACC #6 Miami (F) 7-5
Holiday Big 12 #5 Texas A&M 9-3 Pac 10 #3 U C L A 6-6
Meineke Car Care ACC #4-5 Clemson 7-5 Big East #3-4 West Va. 7-5
Sun ACC #4 or 5 N.C. State 8-4 Pac 10 #4 California 6-6
Liberty SEC #8 or 9 Kentucky 6-6 C-USA #1 Central Fla. 11-2
Chick-fil-A SEC #3-6 Miss. State 8-4 ACC #2 N. Carolina 8-4
Dallas Football Classic Big 10 #6-7 Michigan 7-5 Big 12 #8/CUSA Kansas St. 7-5
Outback SEC #3-6 E Florida 9-4 Big 10 #3 Iowa 10-2
Capital One Big 10 #2 Ohio St. 10-2 SEC #2 L S U 10-2
Gator Big 10 #4 or 5 Penn St. 8-4 SEC #6 S. Carolina 7-5
Rose BCS Pac10 Stanford 11-1 BCS Big 10 Wisconsin 11-1
Fiesta BCS Big 12 Nebraska 11-2 BCS At-Large Pittsburgh 7-5
Orange BCS ACC Va. Tech 11-2 BCS At-Large Arkansas 10-2
Sugar BCS SEC [T C U 12-0] BCS At-Large Boise St. 12-0
GoDaddy.com Sunbelt # 2 Florida Int’l 6-6 MAC #1 or 2 Toledo 8-4
Cotton Big 12 #2 Oklahoma St. 11-2 SEC #3-6 W Alabama 9-3
Birmingham Big East #5 Louisville 7-5 SEC #8 or 9 Georgia 6-6
Kraft Fight Hunger Pac 10 #6 [Temple 9-3] WAC #1 Fresno St. 7-5
National Championship *** BCS #1 *** Auburn 13-0 *** BCS #2 *** Oregon 12-0

 

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