GREETINGS, EARTH CITIZENS. BY NOW MANY OF YOU ARE DOUBTLESSLY AWARE OF ONE OF YOUR KIND PREDICTING THE DEMISE OF YOUR WORLD THIS COMING DAY OF SATURN. IF YOU ARE NOT, YOU NEED NOT SPEND YOUR TIME ENLIGHTENING YOURSELVES, FOR THIS ONE’S SO CALLED PROPHESIES ARE NAUGHT BUT THE RAVINGS OF ONE WHOSE CEREBRAL CAPACITIES HAVE BEEN DIMINISHED BY THE PASSAGE OF TIME. PAY THEM NO HEED, FOR THE DECISION TO BRING THE EARTH’S TIME TO A CLOSE IS OURS ALONE, AND WHEN THAT DECISION IS MADE WE WILL COMMUNICATE THAT TO YOU OURSELVES. OR PERHAPS NOT. WE ARE STILL UNSURE.
Pitt Panthers @ Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (-8)
Pitt is back, and Spilly has moved out to Denver, so Georgia Tech probably doesn’t have to have someone taste-test their food for them this weekend. Probably. The Panthers are coming off back-to-back pastings at the hands of Oklahoma State and Penn State, and so I’m sure they’re thrilled to play a team that rushed for 535 yards against an SEC defense. Hey, that Pitt kicker finally graduated, right? Man, I hated that guy. Never even lived up to his name.
Illuminati pick: Pitt
Texas A&M Aggies vs. Arkansas Razorbacks (-2.5)
It’s time for the once again annual “Southwest Classic, played in Jerryworld because Jerry Jones is really rich, so shut your mouth” game. This year’s game has an extra twist: Jones’ own Arkansas Razorbacks are dressing up like Jones’ own Dallas Cowboys! Thanks be to you, Nike, god of #brands, for making this possible. But, uh, did anyone bother mentioning to Arkansas the Cowboys’ actual record inside Jerry’s Dome of Compensation? It took replacing Tony Romo with an Orange Bowl losing quarterback just to get them over .500. You know, I’m sure it’ll be just fine, Razorbacks.
Illuminati pick: Texas A&M
#16 TCU Horned Frogs @ #6 Oklahoma State Cowboys (-13.5)
TCU-OK State is easily the biggest Big 12 game of the early season, but boy, that is a gaudy number up there, huh? I guess that’s what happens when one team gives up 36 points to SMU. The Horned Frogs are buoyed by Stephen’s favorite(?) player on offense, whereas the Cowboys are held up by.... well, basically everyone. There’s Mason Rudolph and all his 100-yard gaining wide receivers, and their defense ain’t no slouch either, which is a pretty big deal in the Big 12. That all might pose a bit of a problem for TCU. Still, this is a game to watch, and possibly the game of the weekend to watch. Hey, where’s College GameDay emanating from this Saturday, again?
Illuminati pick: TCU
Duke Blue Devils (-2.5) @ UNC Tar Heels
Feels a little early for Duke-UNC, doesn’t it? One of these days the Tar Heels are going to have to decide who their One True Rival is between Duke and NC State. Or not; it’s North Carolina and I dare not venture there unless its to get my hands on some of the sweet, sweet beer they’re brewing up there. Anyway, Larry Fedora’s taken UNC to new heights, including an ACC championship and a beatdown by Baylor in a bowl game. But unlike the past few Tar Heel coaches before him, he hasn’t exactly gotten the best of Duke. Ol’ Cutcliffe got Duke to an ACC championship first and is 3-2 vs. Fedora. Is it a bad time to point out Duke is 3-0 and UNC’s only win this year is over Old Dominion?
Illuminati pick: Duke
Boston College Eagles @ #2 Clemson Tigers (-34)
Oh god, I mean..... I know this is a regularly scheduled ACC Atlantic matchup, but.... why? Just, why?? Look at these two teams. Look at that point spread! Look at the players! It’s Kelly Bryant and the world’s most terrifying defense versus a bunch of guys bein’ dudes. You know who else was a bunch of guys bein’ dudes? Cumberland. They died. The program did. I mean, the players all died eventually, too; that was 101 years ago. But a bunch of guys bein’ dudes got a football program killed. Don’t do this, BC. You have so much to live for.
Illuminati pick: Clemson
Louisiana-Monroe Warhawks @ Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns (-6.5)
By now you should have picked up on the fact I have a thing for trophy games and in-state rivalries, so you may not care about a showdown between two Louisiana based Sun Belt teams, but I sure do. Louisiana (Monroe) and Louisiana (Lafayette) have been doing battle since the 1950s, when they were Northeast and Southwest Louisiana, respectively. Which, I mean.... with Louisiana’s shape, I guess it’s in the northeast. But Lafayette is in more of a south central location. It’d be like putting a school in Tampa and calling it the University of South Florida..
Illuminati pick: Louisiana
#17 Mississippi State Bulldogs @ #11 Georgia Bulldogs (-5)
It’s the kind of, sort of regular SEC Bulldog Battle, which, thanks to expansion, occurs even less often now than it used to. The Bulldogs (of Mississippi State) have a lot more eyeballs on them than they did a week ago thanks to the work of Nick Fitzgerald and company, thus giving the Bulldogs (of Georgia) an opportunity to earn the SEC East some much needed credibility. That didn’t work out so well for Georgia last year when they played Ole Miss, and the Rebels didn’t up being good. But hey, this is your year, right, Dawgs?
Illuminati pick: Mississippi State
Syracuse Orange @ #25 LSU Tigers (-22.5)
You know how last week I brought up Pitt-Oklahoma State as a game that makes you wonder why it was ever scheduled? I’ve wondered that about this series for years. Are there two schools more diametrically opposed than Syracuse and LSU? In terms of just, you know, everything? Fan support, fan behavior, success in the 21st century, actual physical location... I mean, why is this happening? Why did you do this to yourselves, Syracuse? No one made you do this. You could have played UConn again. That would have been fine.
Illuminati pick: LSU
Notre Dame Fighting Irish (-4) @ Michigan State Spartans
Notre Dame-Michigan State is an important rivalry game, because it has a trophy, and that’s what really makes it a rivalry, right? Or maybe the midwest just got carried away with trophy games. Let’s open up the old college football history book and recall the story of one such edition of this series, 51 years ago. In what would later be deemed one of many Games of the Century, the Irish and the Spartans dueled to a 10-10 tie. I can not think of any better result for a game called the “Game of the Century” and played in Big Ten territory.
Illuminati pick: Michigan State
#7 Washington Huskies (-11.5) @ Colorado Buffaloes
The rematch of last year’s Pac-12 Championship is on, and not a moment too soon. Actually, yeah, it might be too soon for Colorado, who lost quarterback Sefo Liufau to graduation and seven defensive starters to the NFL. Then again, Washington and Colorado both ain’t played nobody, so maybe the Buffs are just fine to finally notch their first W against UW since joining the Pac-12. The best part of this matchup is the exchange of, uh, substances that are legal in both Washington and Colorado, anyway.
Illuminati pick: Colorado
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