Each week, during college football season DPB’s Kyle Magin and Andrew J. Pridgen pour on the prose with Pints and Picks™. Who to wager and (sometimes) what to drink while doing it. This week: #shitseason

By Kyle Magin and Andrew J. Pridgen

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Hey Kyle,

I don’t want to sink into the depths of the shoulder season doldrums, but there seems to be a whole lot of not a lot going on as we head into the month of giving thanks.

Maybe it’s because neither one of us has a viable philly in the college football race. With the glass slipper fully shattered and slicing through Oregon’s achilles and the Spartans showing signs that Dantonio may be racking up the frequent flier miles to reclaim the living room in the offseason, the only thing to root for on my end has been to see whether the Ducks can break the NCAA single-season record for points allowed.

Fortunately, this is the World Series that if you say you aren’t captivated (where, pray tell, were all these Tribe and Cubbie faithful for the better part of this century, or on the Cleveland side, during the regular season?) then you’re required to turn in your Blu-ray copy of American Sniper along with your red MAGA hat and brand-new Haze Dual V3 double-chamber vape you’ve been saving for since you saw an ad for it while streaming the GOP convention.

You and I dove into World Series picks earlier this week and thus far we’re both right. If the first few games are any indicator, this has the potential to go seven. And won’t that be nice to be still watching baseball when all the ads are about Christmas.

To give your fingers and our readers eyes a little break this week, I’m going to spare the gory details of how my last three meals made me feel or whether I yelled at my mom recently for throwing away my Empire Strikes Back Burger King commemorative cup set (which, surprisingly, can be replaced for about the same cost as lunch at Port of Subs) and get right to the picks.

New Orleans Pelicans +9.5 vs. The Golden State Warriors (FRIDAY)

Yes Kyle, my first basketball entry of the year. I don’t really relish betting on the exhibition events that are the NBA regular season, but after the defending champs Western Conference winners threw up brick after brick and ushered in the Kevin Durant/evil empire era at home against the Spurs earlier this week creating nothing but questions about what it’s going to take to feed four All Stars for 82 games—I believe Steve Kerr will have his team ready to take down the Pelicans at Smoothie King Center Friday, but not by a whole lot. The Warriors have three things going against them this game: 1) EVERYONE is up for them and will treat each game like a playoff matchup. Even LBJ and Cleveland won’t get the same treatment. The internet puked up a good number of San Antonino owning GSW memes after game 1 and don’t expect that to quit. 2) Ex-Warrior bench coach Alvin Gentry also has something to prove in his second season in loafers and pen board. So expect a little more defense than you’re used to seeing in October in the Big Easy. 3) The Luke Walton difference. How soon we forget that the Warriors 28-game win streak to start off last season was marshaled by the Lakers’ new head coach (1-0). Walton, I always thought, was the unheralded genius of the Warriors’ recent run sand though he and Kerr were both relatively new to the league, they complimented one another and Walton, of the two, was the players’ coach. Luke signed with the Lakers after the first round of last year’s playoffs and conspiracy theories aside about how the league tilted the board in King James’ favor in the finals, I definitely think the knowledge of Walton’s pending absence did affect the Warriors’ demeanor during the stretch run. This will be the first year that Kerr is flying solo, and it may take him a minute to handle the stick, especially with expectations so high. I think you’ll see the Warriors with something like a 2-6 start and EVERYONE going apeshit on ESPN before things settle down.

Cal +11.5 @ USC

USC and Cal are both at 4-3 but the two teams with the identical records couldn’t be more different. USC is coming off a three-game win streak and is a brand new squad with a brand new quarterback and offensive scheme since they sputtered out of the gate against Alabama in Dallas oh so many football lifetimes ago. Cal, on the other hand, is the current purveyor of college football’s Showtime offense, most recently running up a record-setting combined score in a double-overtime win against Oregon last Friday along with establishing a Football Bowl Subdivision record of having run 118 plays during that game. USC, on the other hand, should have their way with Cal’s secondary which is more non-existent than a feature-length script for the third Sex and the City installment. Since QB Sam Darnold was given the nod to start for the Trojans week four, USC’s offense now averages a whopping 9.2 yards per pass attempt, which also puts them among the top teams in the nation. Cal QB Davis Webb, unheralded before the season’s start as the replacement to first-overall pick Jared Goff, has done nothing but take to the skies and put up ridiculous D 1-AA type numbers. With 370 yards a game, Cal has vaulted to the No. 2 pass offense in the nation and Webb has already amassed a superb season’s worth of stats: 2,581 yards with 27 touchdowns. He’s also got seven ints which will have USC’s secondary salivating. USC hasn’t been beaten by the Bears since 2003 and though an upset could be brewing at the Coliseum, I expect what everyone expects, a high-scoring, close game, so take the over 70.5 knowing one team alone could well come close to covering.

Final Prediction: USC 44, Cal 38

Baylor -2 @ Texas

Gawd, I can’t believe I’m dipping into the Big-12, much less an all-Texas shootout nobody west of Abilene should care about. To add insult, I’m picking evil incarnate Baylor. So those of you who ignore Pat Robinson when he says men should withhold intercourse from their wives if they vote for Hillary (men withholding sex? That’s like an insurance company withholding premium hikes, an airline withholding a flight delay or your boss withholding stories that go on way too long about stuff that he thinks makes him look really cool but in reality makes him look like a fucking asshole. In other words, ain’t never gonna happen) shan’t be tuning in. Let’s see, where was I? Oh, OK. Texas football. Look, UT is much-improved this year and are probably even better than their 3-4 record suggests. Meantime, Baylor at 6-0 needs to kindly lose at some point just so they can do the rest of the nation a favor and take themselves out of the  playoff conversation. Chip and Jo Gaines in our living rooms while dinner’s cooking is more than enough Waco for all of us. Does anyone out there get what the Silos is btw? Yeah, me neither. The Longhorns are weak up front on defense and should get a Bear-sized pounding by Baylor RB Shock Linwood who is about to eclipse 4,000 yards for his career. The Horns will also have a tough time getting by Baylor’s stingy secondary. UT wideout Devin Duvernay was once a Baylor signee and his emerged as Texas’ biggest threat, but his efforts still won’t be enough to bring the Bears down at Darrell K Royal.

Final Prediction: Baylor 29, Texas 23

Wow, that was easy. ‘K Kyle, bring us home with something a little more uplifting than Shiner Bock vs. Bible study.

kmI

AJ,

Shiner Bock and Bible Study are key components to any Sunday in Texas. To suggest there’s an adversarial relationship there discounts how fun ‘Ephesians’ is to say while slurring your words. Let’s move on to matters of actual salvation:

Cleveland Indians @ Chicago Cubs (-1.5 Run Line) (FRIDAY)

The eyes of the world, or at least the American, Pacific Rim, Caribbean and northern South American sporting public will be glued to the events at Wrigley tonight. The Cubs will play their first World Series home game since the boys came home from WWII. Dexter Fowler will take the first swing a black man has ever taken in a World Series game for the Cubs. Eddie Vedder will continue to be that hammered cousin everybody seems to love at the wedding. And, the man tasked with standing athwart all this history like William F. Buckley in cleats is… Cleveland Indians starter Josh Tomlin? The modestly-sized righty strikes out a ton of guys and walks very few, but he spreads a lot of hits around, 9.7 per game, to be exact. He also gives up about 2 homers per contest. You’re not going to get away with that in Chicago, especially with the wind blowing out (Noted DPB Commenter Kalamazoo Ron is on the ground in Wrigleyville as of 2:54 cst and confirms this). Even if Tomlin only goes 5 1/3rd, as is his standard, the Cubs have shown a propensity to jump on starters early, doing their damage to both Clayton Kershaw and Trevor Bauer way before the game’s midpoint. Also, Hoosier terror/white Tony Gwynn Kyle Schwarber could well wind up getting a pinch-hit AB in the 2nd or 3rd against a righty he can feast on if the Cubs need the big boy’s bat to sustain or start a waiting line at the bat rack. Calling the Cubs by 2 or more runs feels pretty simple.

Michigan -24.5 @ Michigan State (Over 53)

This is a thing that will happen tomorrow and AJ I’ll thank you for never speaking of it again. I preemptively give this game the same review Shark Sandwich got in Spinal Tap.

Clemson -4 @ Florida State

Clemson (7-0, 4-0) visits Florida State (5-2, 2-2) in a bid to get back into the top 2 after being usurped by the Wolverines this week. The Tigers are 4-3 ATS this season, including 2-1 away from Death Valley. FSU is very beatable, however, and have struggled against every ranked team they’ve played this season. While FSU is more efficient on offense (they control TOP 35:40 to 24:20, Deondre Francois has a better completion percentage than Clemson’s Deshaun Watson, and the ‘Noles score on 94 percent of their trips to the red zone), the Tigers defense is something special. Opponents have converted just 32 of 111 third downs against Clemson and have just 10 red zone touchdowns all season on 23 trips. They’ve been sacked 25 times for a mind-bending 157 negative yards and coughed up 8 fumbles and 11 interceptions against 13 Tiger turnovers. I think Clemson pulls the boa constrictor act again in Tallahassee and drops the ‘Noles while covering.

Enjoy the weekend!

PNP Recap:

Kyle Magin

kmI

Last Week: 1 for 3

Overall: 14 for 27

This week:

Cleveland Indians @ Chicago Cubs (-1.5 Run Line) (FRIDAY)

Michigan -24.5 @ Michigan State

Michigan @ Michigan State (Over 53)

Clemson -4 @ Florida State

AJ Pridgen

apI

Last Week: 1 for 3

Overall: 20 for 33

This week:

New Orleans Pelicans +9.5 vs. The Golden State Warriors (FRIDAY)

Cal +11.5 @ USC

Cal @ USC (Over 70.5)

Baylor -2 @ Texas

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