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FTRS Picks, Week 7: Showdown at Big Tex’s Corral

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Also: Wake Forest...... ranked!

NCAA Football: Oklahoma at Texas
Come on, I was obviously going to use this photo again, even if it’s four years old.
Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Mmmmm, feel that weather. The fall chill is finally back in the air, and it just feels so refreshing. Well, maybe not for the teams who’ve already been eliminated from the playoff. UCF and Texas A&M would probably prefer to turn back time on this season. And the Pac-12.... they always have great weather, so now they just have much more time to enjoy it.

Last week.... folks, it was a total bloodbath. Eight people tied for the week’s best score of..... 3. Congratulations to RamblinRocketman for being one of last week’s 3s and using that 3 to vault themselves into first place. Far more people scored a straight 0, including myself. Hopefully you’re learning your lessons now and not at the sports book, and hopefully we’ll all do better going forward.

#6 Oklahoma Sooners (-10.5) vs. #11 Texas Longhorns

“HOWDY, FOLKS! THIS IS BIG TEX TALKIN’ TO YA. WELCOME TO THE 2019 RED RIVER SHOOTOUT! SOME CITY SLICKERS KEEP TRYING TO GET RID OF THE WORD ‘SHOOTOUT’, BUT I’M 55 FEET TALL WITH A SIX SHOOTER TO MATCH, SO IF THEY WANT TO TRY TO STOP ME FROM SAYING IT, WELL, BLESS THEIR HEARTS. Y’ALL TRIED TO BURN ME ALIVE IN 2012, BUT YOU COULDN’T GET THE JOB DONE AND I RETURNED MORE ALIVE THAN EVER. BETWEEN THAT AND THE CHAOS OF 67 PREVIOUS SHOOTOUTS I FEAR NOTHING. THERE IS NO PREDICTING WHAT HAPPENS WHEN TEXAS AND OKLAHOMA MEET, AND TO ATTEMPT TO DO SO IS TO STARE INTO THE EYE OF MADNESS ITSELF.

....SO ANYWAY, HAVE A GREAT TIME AT THE FAIR AND ENJOY SOME OF THE UNIQUE DELICACIES YOU’LL ONLY FIND RIGHT HERE! TRY THE DEEP FRIED NUTELLA CUSTARD STUFFED FRENCH TOAST AND WASH IT DOWN WITH A FRY RUB AND RYE!”

Pick: Texas

#1 Alabama Crimson Tide (-16.5) @ #24 Texas A&M Aggies

Remember when a Johnny Manziel-led Texas A&M team rolled into Tuscaloosa and knocked off the Crimson Tide? That was seven years ago. Jimbo Fisher was getting paid way less money to win way more games then! It was the Aggies’ first year in the SEC, and they haven’t beaten Bama since. They probably won’t win this year either, and that’s okay, because their schedule, which has included Clemson and Auburn so far, only gets easier from here — oh, wait, no, things end with LSU and Georgia. Yeah, that sucks, guys.

Pick: Alabama

USC Trojans @ #9 Notre Dame Fighting Irish (-10.5)

It’s time for the annual Jeweled Shillelagh game, but the Trojans have received some bad news: QB2 Kedon Slovis has returned from injury and will start Saturday, replacing the much more successful and handsome Matt Fink. Look, USC, you clearly saw what was happening and you’ve decided to tell destiny to screw itself. And no one screws destiny except Mrs. Destiny. Destiny’s gonna take that shillelagh and beat you over the head with it.

Pick: Notre Dame

#10 Penn State Nittany Lions (-3) @ #17 Iowa Hawkeyes

I don’t want to spend more than a sentence talking about the letters some Penn State players received from a fan earlier this week, other to say, yeah, they were totally racist. Penn State being favored by only three points might seem a bit low, but remember this series birthed the famous 6-4 game, so it’s probably about right. Iowa already failed their first test against a Big Ten East opponent, and this one looks wayyy tougher. But if there’s one thing you should keep in mind, it’s to never count out the strange, mystical powers of the eternal Kirk Firentz.

Pick: Penn State

Nebraska Cornhuskers @ Minnesota Golden Gophers (-7.5)

No, of course I wasn’t going to forget about the $5 Bits of Broken Chair Trophy, the greatest trophy in the history of our great sport. Minnesota survived maybe the most ill-advised non-con schedule in history — seriously, South Dakota State, Fresno, and Georgia Southern? was Boise not available? — unscathed and is undefeated at 5-0, yet remains cruelly ranked far behind 3-2 Texas A&M, because #itjustmeansmore, except for the losses. Nebraska is closely approaching their traditional 9 7 wins, and their Big Ten schedule so far consists of close wins over Illinois and 1-4 Northwestern, and getting murdered by Ohio State when GameDay came to Lincoln. You got this, Scott Frost.

Pick: Minnesota

Louisville Cardinals @ #19 Wake Forest Demon Deacons (-6.5)

Wake Forest is..... ranked? It feels like it’s been a while since that’s happened, but surely it hasn’t been that long — I’m sorry, it’s actually been 11 years. If you don’t think Dave Clawson is a miracle worker, I don’t want to hear about it. Seriously, Wake Forest football peaked in 2006 and never got better but they’re 5-0 and could ride this out to 9-0 if they wanted to. But this is the ACC, so expect something weird to happen to them before they face Clemson. Like Louisville; they’re halfway to bowl eligibility already after getting obliterated in basically every game they played last year. Honestly, this could end up being a great ACC Atlantic 2nd place game!

Pick: Louisville

#7 Florida Gators @ #5 LSU Tigers (-13)

College GameDay is just following Florida around now. After successfully suing the Second Doctor Bo for malpractice, the Gators have won ten in a row headed into their annual kinda-rivalry, kinda-not, but they still hate each other cross-division game. Normally you’d expect this to be a close one, but..... LSU is scary good on offense this year? This feels strange and wrong, but Joe Burrow has the best completion percentage in FBS, the second most passing yards, and the third highest passer rating. This is a strange, scary new world, and I just looked up Florida’s schedule again and realized they’ve played two FCS teams. Anyway, enjoy this highlight reel of LSU beating Florida on special teams fakes. Did Ed Orgeron call up any of these? Nope, but it’s still fun to watch*.

*Not applicable to Florida fans.

Pick: LSU

Hawai’i Rainbow Warriors @ #14 Boise State Broncos (-12.5)

Oh hell yeah, Mountain West bringing the late night heat featuring its two hottest teams. Boise-Hawai’i has been..... less than competitive as of late, with the Broncos taking the last six games in the series, and winning the last five with a margin of no less than 35 points. But this one hopes to echo the one from 2007. Back then, the two met as WAC opponents (you know, back when the WAC was still a thing. remember the WAC?) and Colt Brennan threw for like a thousand yards — actually, legitimately, half of that — to win the Warriors the WAC championship and a BCS bowl slot. What happened in that bowl? It’s weird, I don’t remember it at all. Anyway, yes, that was another crazy point in the crazy year of 2007. Will this year’s edition reverberate across the college football landscape like that one did? Probably not! But let’s hope it does.

Pick: Boise

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