It’s week four and my scoring system has been called into question.
But we’re going to continue picking games. There are some interesting matchups on the slate this weekend across all of college football and Hail Varsity’s Brandon Vogel, Greg Smith, Jacob Padilla and myself will try to pick them.
The updated standings are as follows: Smith (90 points), Peterson (90 points), Vogel (70 points), Padilla (70 points).
Our weekly Friday Forecast is presented by the Gamblers Assistance Program, the Nebraska Council on Compulsive Gambling and Choices Treatment Center. If you or someone you love has a problem with gambling, call the state-wide help line at 1-800-522-4700.
Iowa vs. No. 4 Penn State (-13)
BV: Echoes of Michigan at Iowa in 2016? Little earlier this year, which is probably to Penn State’s advantage, but the Hawkeyes keep it close. PICK: Penn State 28 Iowa 21
GS: This could be a sneaky good game. Saquon Barkley said that Iowa quit during last year’s game so Iowa will have a little extra juice. It won’t matter because Penn State is much better. PICK: Penn State 31, Iowa 17
JP: Penn State isn’t letting an early-season loss get in the way of its CFP aspirations. The Nittany Lions are the better team and while Iowa will put up a fight (shout-out to my boy Noah Fant), Penn State’s talent wins out. PICK: Penn State 34, Iowa 20
DP: Kinnick Stadium is a tough place to play and the fans will be jumping. This will probably be closer than Penn State would like but I still think the fighting James Franklins get the win. PICK: Penn State 17, Iowa 10
No. 6 Oklahoma State (-13) vs. No. 16 TCU
BV: The line’s about right, should be a ton of fun, sometimes I miss the Big 12. PICK: Oklahoma State 35 TCU 23
GS: Kenny “Trill” Hill is pretty good but Oklahoma State looks like a team on a mission this season. The mullet rolls. PICK: Oklahoma State 51, TCU 21
JP: The Mason Rudolph hype train continues to pick up steam. PICK: Oklahoma State 38, TCU 31
DP: Yeah TCU is ranked and Kenny Hill is a pretty good quarterback but the Cowboys have answered every question I had about them heading into the season. I’m not questioning this team until Bedlam. Pistols will be firing in Stillwater. PICK: Oklahoma State 45, TCU 27
Purdue vs. No. 8 Michigan (-10)
BV: Does anyone remember what a full and rocking Ross-Ade Stadium looks like? I’m excited to find out. I like to drive the Jeff Brohm train, but the Boilermakers might actually be getting a little too much credit here. PICK: Michigan 42 Purdue 21
GS: Does anyone smell that? It’s the upset in the air. Brohm has been excellent so far at Purdue and I think they are ripe to pull off the upset in one of the biggest games in school history. PICK: Purdue 21, Michigan 20
JP: Purdue has been a fun story in Jeff Brohm’s first season, but the magic runs out this week against the Wolverines and their stout defense. PICK: Michigan 24, Purdue 13
DP: To me, this is one of the most interesting games this weekend. Michigan hasn’t looked like the No. 8 team in the country to begin the season and Purdue looks better than expected. Are they legit? I don’t know, but I want to know, and we’ll find out in a potential trap game in West Lafayette. PICK: Purdue 24, Michigan 20
No. 11 Georgia (-5.5) vs. No. 17 Mississippi State
BV: This is going to be a dog fight. (Thank you.) And Georgia’s going to win it behind its running game, but the other Bulldogs will still come out looking okay. PICK: Georgia 28 Mississippi State 27
GS: I learned my lesson after picking against my No. 2 team, the Dawgs of Mississippi State. Dan Mullen still has some magic to sprinkle down south. PICK: Mississippi State 31, Georgia 24
JP: Mississippi State is coming off a beatdown of LSU and I think the Bulldogs will establish themselves as the clear No. 2 team in the SEC behind Alabama with a win this week. PICK Mississippi State 38, Georgia 31
DP: Do I pick against Georgia again after getting the Notre Dame game so wrong? Yeah. I will. PICK: Mississippi State 35, Georgia 30
Nebraska (-11) vs. Rutgers
BV: Almost no result here would surprise me. Nebraska’s injury list is absurd, but somehow I think they find a way to be the sporadically good Huskers from the first three weeks less sporadically on Saturday. PICK: Nebraska 31 Rutgers 14
GS: I have no idea what to do here. Nebraska will be missing so many key contributors that I can’t see them covering. I also can’t see them losing to Rutgers. Bob Diaco’s defense leads the way here. PICK: Nebraska 21, Rutgers 14
JP: Nebraska is entering this game as a wounded animal, both figuratively and literally, and wounded animals are often the most dangerous. PICK Nebraska 30, Rutgers 16
DP: Ugh. That’s what I have to say about picking this game. The Huskers need a good game offensively like I need a pair of Yeezys. Rutgers’ secondary is legit so “Run the Ball” Guy will be happy with the offensive attack in this one (I think). This is going to be close, just have to accept that. PICK: Nebraska 17, Rutgers 10
BONUS: Maryland (-3.5) vs. UCF
BV: Tempted to take UCF, but it’s tough to know much about any of the Florida teams that haven’t played for a couple of weeks. Maryland’s proven more to this point, so I’ll lean that way in what should be a fun one. PICK: Maryland 35 UCF 30
GS: There will be so many people from this state keeping an eye on this game. I really like Maryland’s skill players though. Frost will keep it close but Maryland gets the W. PICK: Maryland 34, UCF 31
JP: UCF is a great story and local fans will be keeping an eye on the team both because of Scott Frost and because Frost has a local kid in true freshman Noah Vedral (Wahoo Neumann) as his back-up quarterback. However, D.J. Durkin has the Terps on the come-up. PICK: Maryland 35, UCF 27
DP: I think it’s safe to say UCF is about to get a pretty substantial viewership bump from the Midwest moving forward. Scott Frost and company have a test on their hands though with Maryland’s offense. But maybe that’s a good thing for Husker fans? PICK: Maryland 37, UCF 35
Our picks today are for entertainment purposes only. Between 6 and 8 million Americans meet the criteria for gambling addiction, and many more are affected by another individual’s gambling problem. Don’t gamble more than you can afford and if it stops being fun seek help.
Problem gambling is not a bad habit or a moral weakness. It’s a serious condition. But with help, problem gamblers can put the game in perspective and make decisions to improve their lives.
If you or someone you love has a gambling problem, in Lincoln call Choices treatment center 24/7 at 402-476-2300 or statewide call The Nebraska Council on Problem Gambling 24/7 at 1-800-522-4700. Help is free so call today.
Derek is a newbie on the Hail Varsity staff covering Husker athletics. In college, he was best known as ‘that guy from Twitter.’ He has covered a Sugar Bowl, a tennis national championship and almost everything in between (except an NCAA men’s basketball tournament game… *tears*). In his spare time, he can be found arguing with literally anyone about sports.