It was a great week for me straight up, going 11-0. Against the spread? I broke even at 5-5. This week is an exercise in determining how many points is too many to give a Big Ten team against inferior competition -- except for you Minnesota. I'd get your WAC application ready. Here's the MACrifical lambs the Big Ten has lined up this week. By the way, do you know that SB Nation has a MAC blog? Matt Sussman does a great job over at Hustle Belt, stop by and give it a read.
CENTRAL MICHIGAN at NORTHWESTERN (-6.5) - LOCK OF THE WEEK
This isn't last year's Central Michigan team. A Northwestern team that handled Rice in Texas should handle the Chippewas here, with Dan Persa completing 80% of his passes -- all for four yards each.
Straight and Spread Picks: Northwestern
NORTHERN COLORADO at MICHIGAN STATE (No Line)
Don Treadwell gets the perfect game to attenuate to head coaching duties before a big Wisconsin match next week.
Pick: Michigan State
BOWLING GREEN at MICHIGAN (-25.5)
Normally I'd say with Michigan's defense, they shouldn't be giving more than 20 points to anyone. However, Bowling Green's starting QB is out for this game, and a replacement has not been chosen. The Wolverine offense will overachieve enough to cover the spread.
Straight and Spread Picks: Michigan
AUSTIN PEAY at WISCONSIN (No Line)
Wisconsin also gets a breather before they head to East Lansing next week. They haven't looked like a Big Ten title contender yet, but will in this game.
BALL STATE at IOWA (-28)
Michigan's offense + Iowa's defense = one behemoth of a team. Iowa's offense however? I don't think they score enough to overcome the four touchdown line.
Straight Pick: Iowa -- Spread Pick: Ball State
TOLEDO at PURDUE (-12) - MISS OF THE WEEK
Toledo looks like one of the upper echelon MAC teams; they beat Ohio and Western Michigan, both on the road. They'll give Purdue a heap of trouble, but I think Purdue wins this by two touchdowns and barely covers, thanks to a slightly improved Robert Marve.
Straight and Spread Picks: Purdue
EASTERN MICHIGAN at OHIO STATE (-44.5)
44.5 points? Way too much for any team except Oregon and Alabama, and that's not taking into account the special teams touchdown that will be scored against the Buckeyes.
Straight Pick: Ohio State -- Spread Pick: Eastern Michigan
TEMPLE at PENN STATE (-14)
Temple has been the class of the MAC so far, and Penn State's offense has looked anemic against FBS opponents. Evan Royster can't suck forever, and even if it's not his breakout game, I think PSU finds a way to win this game by about three touchdowns. Aren't hunches awesome?
Straight and Spread Picks: Penn State
AKRON at INDIANA (-22)
See the explanation about Indiana from last week -- the Hoosiers will score a lot of points, while Akron will score slightly less.
Straight Pick: Indiana -- Spread Pick: Akron
NORTHERN ILLINOIS at MINNESOTA (-4)
Northern Illinois came within a touchdown of beating Illinois last week, and they now head to Minneapolis to take on a Gopher team that at best looked less than impressive against a Sun Belt team starting a back-up quarterback. The Tim Brewster death march continues.
Straight and Spread Picks: Northern Illinois
YEAR TO DATE:
STRAIGHT UP PICKS: 29-2 SPREAD PICKS: 10-11-1 LOCK OF THE WEEK: 3-0 straight up, 1-2 spread MISS OF THE WEEK: 2-1 straight up, 1-2 spread
STRAIGHT UP PICKS: 29-2
SPREAD PICKS: 10-11-1
LOCK OF THE WEEK: 3-0 straight up, 1-2 spread
MISS OF THE WEEK: 2-1 straight up, 1-2 spread