Posted 09/06/2008 at 06:05 PM
Good evening ladies and gents. Before I go downtown to Philips Arena for tonight's UFC 88, let me chime in with a few thoughts from this afternoon.
1- Everyone and their sister thinks Ohio St. is a top-five team but if you look at my Top 30, you'll see the Buckeyes outside of the top five and I may drop them even more after Saturday's dreadful performance. Jim Tressel's team emerged unscathed, capturing a 26-14 win over Ohio, but the Bucks never threatened to cover the 30-plus number. The Bobcats actually had a 14-6 lead midway through the third quarter and if not for a special-teams fumble that completely shifted the momemntum of the game, who knows what would have happened at The 'Shoe?
2- Two of my favorite teams out there this year -- Ole Miss and Wake Forest -- are locked up in a dandy dogfight in Winston Salem. The Rebels just took a 21-20 lead early in the fourth quarter on a Jevan Snead TD pass to Dexter McCluster, who I've been touting as a Percy Harvin/Jeremy Maclin type of player for the last couple of months.
Wake just answered with a TD drive and opted to go for the PAT, making it 27-21. Bettors like me backing Wake at minus 7 would've liked to have seen Jim Grobe go for two there, but there's still 11 minutes and change left in the final stanza.
3-If USC is favored by seven or less against Ohio St. next week, I'll be ALL OVER the Trojans.
4-You still have time to purchase my guaranteed play for tonight -- it's on the Florida-Miami total. Click here to win. I'm 6-0 (#1 on VI) on my guaranteed plays so far this year.
5- Oklahoma just got ahead of the (-21) number with a touchdown for a 42-20 lead over Cincy.
6- Florida is going to DESTROY Miami tonight.
7- I can't believe I didn't play the Georgia-CMU 'over' (56) like I talked about all week. It cashed.
A few quick hitters...
--If you wanna follow my blog tonight, I'll be writing live from UFC 88 about the fights. I can't wait to Chuck "The Ice Man" Liddell go at with "Sugar" Rashad Evans.
--Liddell is minus 280 at most books. Bettors can take Evans for a return in the plus 210 range (risk $100 to win $210).
--Not only will this be the first MMA event I've ever covered, it will be the first "fight" I've ever attended unless Rick Flair, Dusty Rhodes and Co. at the Leon Co. Civic Center in Tallahassee in the late '80s counts. I'm extremely excited! UFC is taking off like NASCAR did a decade ago.
--11:00ish: While I wait on the Rich Franklin fight to start in about 10 minutes, let me make a few points stemming from Saturday's action.
1- Florida didn't play very well, but a field goal with 28 seconds left gave the Gators a 26-3 win over Miami. Most gamblers backing UF cashed tickets thanks to the late field goal unless those bettors waited too late. The line was in the 21-22 range most of the week. It did shoot up to 23-24 shortly before kick-off. Florida now has a bye week before going on the road to face Tennessee.
2- East Carolina continued to make noise with its never-a-doubt 24-3 win over West Va. as a 7 1/2-point underdog. The Pirates now look like a team that could possibly run the table. They have to go on the road to face N.C. St. and Virginia, but they might be favored in both of those spots. Certainly, each of those contests is very winnable. As for its toughest C-USA games, ECU will host Houston and has to go on the road to take on UCF and So. Miss.
3- Nice win for Paul Johnson and the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets, who won a 19-16 decision at Boston College as seven-point underdogs.