Welcome back to Weekend Predictions, where by going 10-3 against the spread last week we again validated our mission statement, which is to put you on the road to financial freedom by providing valuable insight into the complex world of sports investment strategy and international markets, although I’m not really sure what an international market is, possibly a Winn-Dixie just outside of Tuscany.
Providing this 100 percent guaranteed (give or take) advice means sometimes looking at news items outside the sports world, such as this statement from Groper In Chief Donald Trump. On Thursday, Trump took a break from alienating every possible life form in our solar system — with the possible exception of those 12 people who still believe he’s fit to run the country, control nuclear weapons and operate their boiled peanuts empire — to utter this after a woman fainted in his audience: “That woman was out cold, and now she’s coming back. See, we don’t go by these new, and very much softer, NFL rules. Concussions … uh, oh, got a little ding on the head? No, no, you can’t play for the rest of the season …”
I would love to put Trump in touch with some who’ve suffered from head trauma and CTE. Unfortunately, they are dead. I know. Convenient.
Imagine how much better our choices would be if Washington adopted the NFL’s concussion protocol.
Speaking of choices . . . (note to aspiring journalists: transitions are easy).
This week, Georgia plays its homecoming game against Vanderbilt. The only thing more common in the SEC than “homecoming game against Vanderbilt” is “homecoming game against Kentucky.” They’re quite popular. And TOTALLY hot. (Sorry, I was channeling someone else.)
The Dogs aren’t a great team. I’m not even sure yet if they’re a good team. But they can run the ball now, which could be enough to carry them in that direction. Certainly this week.
The line is 14. I’m lucid. Dogs win and the line is covered.
NFL puts Trump and Ron Burgundy in concussion protocol
Sack Schultz 2016
Week 6 update: Last week’s winners/cheaters were out-of-staters Jamie O’Neill of Springfield, Ill., and Wesley Moore of West Union, S.C., both of whom went 14-1. There are five contestants tied for the overall lead with 69 wins through six weeks, the halfway point. You still can win weekly prizes and are eligible for the grand prizes: tickets to the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl and/or a $2,500 Apple Vacation. Go to MyAJC.com/go/sackschultz2016 to register.
Georgia Southern at Georgia Tech: The Jackets’ three straight losses (Clemson, Miami, Pitt) means they’re on a 2-10 run in the ACC since 2015, which isn’t a good way to impress a new boss. Beating Southern won’t quiet the barbarians at the gate. But maybe they’ll at least break for lunch. Or a pint of blood and a pound of flesh. Tech covers 10½.
Alabama at Tennessee: This rivalry is known as the “Third Saturday in October,” because “The Day Alabama Throws Us Into A Mulcher And Spreads Us Around The Plants At The Knoxville Bojangles” apparently wasn’t acceptable to both sides. Good news for the Vols fans who’ve been stressed out by so many close calls: You’ll have plenty of time to drink some calming tea as Bama slowly puts you to sleep this week. Tide covers 13.
Wake Forest at Florida State: Wake Forest’s five wins have come over Tulane, Duke, Delaware, Indiana and Syracuse. Too scared to schedule Montessori? Seminoles cover 21.
Missouri at Florida: Florida has agreed to the SEC’s request to reschedule the Florida-LSU game for Nov. 19 in Baton Rouge in exchange for Florida getting next year’s game in Gainesville. It’s a huge relief to conference commissioner Greg Sankey, who was starting to look like the post-Mike Slive Phil Bengston in the SEC office. (Kids: Google.) Gators win but take Mizzou and 13½.
North Carolina at Miami: Mark Richt this week dismissed a freshman receiver for “multiple violations of the team Code of Conduct.” The Miami Code of Conduct was discovered only recently in an abandoned warehouse under a stack of old Pell Grant applications, Luther Campbell records and Jimmy Hoffa. Canes cover 7½.
Wake deserves a fish-slapping
Mississippi at Arkansas: An Arkansas fan was arrested last week for yelling profanities and verbally abusing coach Bret Bielema after a loss to Alabama, which wouldn’t be huge news except for the fact the guy was a drunk Arkansas professor, which come to think of it might not be big news after all. And the farm animals cover their face in shame. Ole Miss covers 8.
Duke at Louisville: Three years after playing for the ACC title, Duke has lost to Wake Forest, Northwestern and Virginia. Ah, feels like old times. A whopper of a spread but Bobby Petrino likes to go out of his way to crush pill bugs on the way to his office. Cardinals cover 35.
Liberty at Kennesaw State: It’s a Big South opener and it’s so big that it’s on ESPN3. (ESPN8, “The Ocho,” was showing Big South dodgeball.) Liberty’s chancellor and deeply disturbed offspring Jerry Falwell Jr. endorsed Trump, causing Liberty alum and Tallahassee church leader Dean Serra to comment, “I think evangelicals, at times, can be a cheap political date.” Hey, he said that. Liberty wins but take KSU plus 7.
Meanwhile, on ESPN8 (“The Ocho”)
NFL Six Pack (I drank one)
Falcons at Seahawks: Some have been slow to accept that the Falcons are any good because of, well, most of 51 years of history. But to discount a 4-1 start and a win at Denver in a schedule that many believed would turn this team into some unrecognizable, post-apocalyptic blob seems kind of silly. That said, playing Seattle on the tail end of a 10-day trip when the Seahawks are coming off a bye . . . duck. Seattle covers 6½.
49ers at Bills: Big week for Colin Kaepernick. He’s starting, which means he’ll have to stand up. Bills cover 8.
Cowboys at Packers: The Cowboys have a great thing going with Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott. It’s almost enough to make you forget that Jerry Jones has gone months without signing a convicted felon, like Greg Hardy, who’s joining MMA. He must really believe he’s in shape because he’s fighting men this time. Packers cover 4.
Bengals at Patriots: Tom Brady’s first day out on parole: 406 yards passing and 3 touchdowns against Cleveland. But this week he has to play an NFL team. Patriots cover 9.
Panthers at Saints: Did you know that Carolina, 15-1 last season and 1-4 this year, has never had consecutive winning seasons? There must be an old Smith family gene in there somewhere. Take the gift 3 but Saints win straight up.
Last week (you’re welcome): 10-3 straight up, 10-3 against the line.
Bottom dollars: 57-21 straight up, 42-33-3 against the line.
Lilly’s pick: The mutt has become mediocre, losing with the Broncos’ pick last week to fall to 3-3. Considering buying a goldfish for future picks. Until then, she had a choice of hot dog chunks with Mr. Commodore on the left and Uga on the right. Lilly pondered then went right. Dogs win.
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