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FTRS Picks, Week 5: Shootouts are socially distanced

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Just remember to sanitize your firearms

Oklahoma at Texas
I don’t care how long it’s been, I will always use Charlie Strong wearing the Golden Hat as the emblem for the Red River Shootout
Brandon Wade/Fort Worth Star-Telegram/Tribune News Service via Getty Images

The blood week giveth, and then the blood week giveth even more. Just because four conferences aren’t even playing doesn’t mean we can’t have a weekend full of upsets, and boy oh boy were there upsets to be had. Eight ranked teams lost, six of which were upsets. SMU got their revenge against Memphis, Pitt Pitted, UCF lost to the Oklahoma team everyone forgets about, and speaking of Oklahoma, we’re setting up for the most off the rails Red River Shootout in maybe 25 years. Right now the Big Ten is probably rethinking their decision to rethink their decision to not play football this fall. If they don’t play, Ohio State will be undefeated in December and a shoo-in for the playoff!

The blood week wasn’t limited to the field last week, as the results for everyone were.... not pretty. That’s four 0s, with an average below 40%. I’d have to check, but that may be the worst hit rate since I’ve been writing these. Congrats to THWUGA and Trystan Snipes for notching the best score.... which was still a 4. Yeah, let’s move on. SullyGT is your new leader by the slimmest of margins, but they are just one bad week away from giving up that lead, and those are in plentiful supply around these parts, so next week that top spot could be yours!

#22 Texas Longhorns vs. Oklahoma Sooners (-2.5)

“HOWDY, FOLKS! THIS IS BIG TEX, WELCOMING Y’ALL TO THE 2020 RED RIVER SHOOTOUT. IT’S A LITTLE LESS LIVELY AROUND THE STATE FAIR GROUNDS THIS YEAR, WHAT WITH THE GLOBAL PANDEMIC GOING ON, BUT DON’T YOU WORRY ABOUT BIG OL’ ME. I MAY BE FIFTY FIVE FEET TALL, BUT THEY STILL MADE A FACEMASK THAT FITS ME JUST FINE. PLUS, I DON’T ACTUALLY HAVE LUNGS OR A RESPIRATORY SYSTEM, I’M JUST A VERY TALL STATUE. ANYWAY, ENJOY THE GAME AND REMEMBER FLETCHER’S CORN DOGS ARE JUST AS TASTY IN THE COMFORT OF YOUR HOME.”

Pick: OU is currently in shambles.... so definitely OU

#19 Virginia Tech Hokies @ #8 North Carolina Tar Heels (-5)

What’s this? An ACC Coastal matchup with two ranked teams? Well, technically, there are no ACC divisions this year, so hah, suck it, ACC Coastal! You’re still the division everyone makes fun of, even though the Pac-12 South hasn’t done anything of note in years and the B1G West is just Wisconsin, except when they slip up and let Northwestern win the division. Anyway, Virginia Tech opened the season with wins over two thirds of the North Carolina research triangle, and now only UNC remains. Somewhere, in an undisclosed location in Charlotte, John Swofford has assembled a task force to accomplish a single objective: stop the Hokies at any cost.

Pick: Virginia Tech

#14 Tennessee Volunteers @ #3 Georgia Bulldogs (-12.5)

Georgia quarterback and future mayor of Peachtree City Stetson Bennett IV had quite the coming out party this weekend against Clemson, helped by a stellar effort from his defense, but I Guarantano the Bulldogs will face a tougher test when Tennessee visits them this Saturday. Oh god, I really did it. I made the guarantee/Guarantano joke. There really is no coming back from this. Forgive me.

Pick: Georgia

#2 Alabama Crimson Tide (-24) @ Ole Miss Rebels

[a weird but familiar train whistle blows in the distance. it sounds like it’s..... singing Dixie?]

whooooooooOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO YEAH BABY IT’S THE LANE TRAIN WITH A SHINY NEW ENGINE AND CENTRAL STATION! Had a little trouble a couple weeks ago when some passengers from Gainesville visited, but who doesn’t? Made its first trip to Lexington and came back.... well, a little dinged up, but nothing some paint won’t fix. (Wait, has the Lane Train been to Lexington before?) But now they face a stiff test from some turnstile jumpeers from Tuscaloosa. Luckily, the conductor of the Lane Train is familiar with their tactics and should have no trouble handling them. Right, Lane?

Pick: Alabama

#7 Miami Hurricanes @ #1 Clemson Tigers (-14)

Some are calling Clemson-Miami a preview of the ACC championship, and given how the last (and only) ACC championship between these two schools went, I certainly hope so. Even the rankings are the same! This could be fate. The good news for the Hurricanes is they are undefeated in Death Valley — really, they’re 2-0 — and the limited crowds due to the current restrictions should make the Hurricanes feel right at home. The bad news is FSU and even Louisville aren’t really comparable to Clemson, and there’s a good chance ol’ Dabo puts the fear of god into them. Literally, I mean; I’m expecting him to give a sermon after the game.

Pick: Clemson

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