Happy Thanksgiving to all and a hope for no turkey games.

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football

Last week in college games I went 6-1 which leaves me at 37-16.

In pro games I went 3-0 bringing me to 23-12.

Key College games:

#17 Texas A&M @ Texas – A&M had a big upset last week over Nebraska in a 9-6 win. The D did a great job. A&M gets another win to break a long losing streak this week against the Horns.

#21 Arizona @ #1 Oregon – If the game was at Arizona they would be a better challenge for the Ducks. But no duck hunters here, Oregon wins.

#2 Auburn @ #12 Alabama – Despite all the smoke around Tiger QB Newton, the NCAA is silent. They will likely make a ruling early in 2017. Bama wins in a close tough game but Auburn still plays for the national championship.

#4 Boise State @ #19 Nevada – This is a big game for Boise against a good team on national TV. Boise wins only if they can keep Nevada QB Kapernick under control.

Northwestern @ #7 Wisconsin – If the game was away there might be a chance for an upset but the Badger O line will punish the Cats and win the game.

Michigan @ #8 Ohio StateThe Bucks need a big win and at least a close win by Wisconsin to have any chance to climb over the Badgers in the BcS ratings. They get a 10-12 point win but won’t move in the standings.

#13 Oklahoma @ #9 Oklahoma State – The Sooners play much better at home. OkS plays well everywhere except against Nebraska. State wins with the passing game.

#10 Michigan State @ Penn State – Michigan State will win this one and end up in the 3 way tie for the Big 10+1 title.

NFL:

Falcons (8-2) – 2.5 @ Packers (7-3) – The Pack has had a lot of injuries particularly on D. The Falcons are healthy and win in close game.

Jaguars (6-4) @ Giants (6-4)-9.5 – The Giants looked good last week against the Eagles and the Jags gave 6 TOs to the Browns and still won. The G-Men win but won’t cover.

Bucs (7-3) @ Ravens (7-3)-8.5 – The Bucs are a fraud but the Ravens are struggling on D due to problems in the DBackfield. The Ravens win but I wouldn’t touch that number. Both teams are too inconsistent.

Eagles (7-3)-3 @ Chicago (7-3) – I like the way QB Vick is playing and do not like the way that Bear QB Cutler is playing. The Eagles win and cover.

Frankly, there are no other key games this week.

That’s what I think. Tell me what you think.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He is a senior writer for and edits https://fryingpansports.com. His first non-fiction work is at the publisher now and he has also published several novels on

and edits .

Some Christmas wishes in the Sports world.

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s

Cowboy Coach Phillips—Some wins after Turkey Day. The Boys haven’t done very well in December. JJ told the Boys faithful that if Phillips doesn’t win in the playoffs, he will be history. Phillips needs some help selling his house ’cause that ain’t happening.

Browns coach Mangenous—One more really silly owner to bail his career out again. Holmgren is “Football Czar of the Month” in Cleveland. There is little chance that Mangini will keep his job past 4:01 PM Sunday January 3. He got the current gig just after getting fired in New York. He needs another very gullible owner.

Buc Coach Morris—A copy of The Idiot’s Guide to Pro Football. Morris is badly over his head in Tampa. He was not even qualified to be OC let alone HC. With the team 1-forever, he needs to learn the game a lot more quickly to keep his job for next year.

Saints’ DC Greg Williams—A head coaching job in the NFL. Williams never got a decent shot in Buffalo and has proven with both the Redskins and Saints that he is ready for a top job. With the number of teams that will be looking for new top guys after this year, he should get a chance.

Former Browns’ Coach Crennel—Renewal of the Coors beer commercials because he isn’t likely to get another job in the NFL. Crennel is too nice a guy to be effective as a head man. He has only had success only in a highly disciplined situation. He needs the commercials because he needs work even though he is still being paid by the Browns.

Ex ND Coach Weis—A Christmas Card from Holmgren. Weis’ best shot at an OC spot is with the Browns to help QB Quinn develop. They were very close in ND and if anyone can turn Quinn’s career around, Weis believes he is the one.

Ohio State Coach Tressel—A win in the Rose Bowl. The Big 10 has a bad record in bowl games with OSU at the bottom of the list. Having suspended several players, his chances are less this year than most. Another couple of losses in the post season and Tress may find out that beating Michigan may not be enough to keep his job.

Florida Football Coach Urban Meyer—A Tebow clone at QB. After winning 2 BcS Championships in 4 years, Florida will likely take a step back next season. They lose their star QB and most of the D this year. Given the development of the Bama team as well as a couple of other SEC teams, it will be very hard for them to get back to the national championship game.

For College Football fans everywhere–A real playoff.  We will not get a playoff until the big contributors to college programs tell the pinhead presidents “NO MORE MONEY UNTIL YOU SUPPORT A REAL PLAYOFF!” If you wonder what it will take, follow the money.

The Chicago Cubs—Some pitching and a shot at the World Series. It’s been over 100 years since Cubbie fans had a chance to say something other than “wait ’til next year.” Enough of that, let’s see some playoff baseball.

Cleveland Cavs–Some of the magic from last year but in the 2010 playoffs.  O’Neil has been OK but the team has not come together like they did last year.  They need to regain the chemistry they had last year but extend that in the playoffs.

Most of all—A very Merry Christmas to all of you. Thank you for taking the time to read this site. If you have any suggestions for more gifts for sports teams, let me know.

That’s what I think. Tell me what you think.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He is a senior writer for and edits https://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on and edits .

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What to look for this weekend in football

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football

College

Pac10 Championship—sort of

Oregon beat Oregon State 37-33 for the league title and the Rose Bowl ticket. In the end, it was the running and passing of the Ducks that won the game. The Ducks will give Ohio State all they want.

SEC Championship We finally get to see #1 Florida against #2 Alabama. It should be a defensive struggle again this year like it was last season. However, Bama seems to have a little more explosiveness to their O than the Gators. The game will be determined by turnovers and will be low scoring and close. The Bama D is as good as the Florida D so the game will depend on the QB’s ability to move the ball on the opponent. Most experts think that Bama will win but I can’t go against Tebow. When the game is in the balance he always seems to find a way to win.

Big12 Championship

#3 Texas will have their way with a good but too young #22 Nebraska team in this game. The game will be the showcase for QB Colt McCoy and should elevate him to a Heisman award as much for his body of work as for this season. The Huskers are a year away from challenging for a B12 title.

#5 Cincinnati @ #15 Pitt

The Bearcats are playing for a BcS game and should win. Pitt looked very ordinary last week in a loss to West Virginia. I expect the Cats’ D to be too much for the talented but turnover prone Panthers.

USA Conference Championship

If you haven’t seen Houston QB Keenum, take a look at this game. He is fun to watch. The Houston O is a wide open passing game that will throw the ball all over the East Carolina D. Nobody is going to want to get paired with Houston in a bowl game.

NFL

Eagles @ Falcons

QB Vick makes his return to Atlanta but won’t be a factor. Both teams are chasing after a playoff spot. The loser will likely be out of the race. The Falcons play well at home but the Eagles should win.

Titans @ Colts

QB Young will have his winning streak ended with a thud but most likely it won’t be his fault. The Titan D has been playing better with Young at QB because he has been able to keep drives alive with his legs. The problems in the pass D of the Titans will be exploited by Manning. The Colts won’t blow them away because they tend to play down to competition but the Colts will win.

Cowboys @ Giants

Well, it’s December and time for the Boys to take their annual dive. Everything points to a Boys win but Romo doesn’t play well after Turkey day. The Boys need a win to keep up on the Eagles. I have to think that the Boys will find a way to lose rather than Giants winning the game.

Vikings @ Cards

IF QB Warner plays, this should be a good close game filled with offense. But I don’t think he will and the Vikes will win. QB Leinart couldn’t beat the Titans last week and folds under a good pass rush. The Vikes turn up the heat on D and win the game.

Ravens @ Packers

The Ravens have struggled in the last couple of weeks but should find the Pack D a little easier to run on. But in the end, the Pack O will be too much for an aging Raven D. Pack wins in a close game.

Seattle fires their GM.

Tim Ruskett, the GM that replaced Coach Holmgren in that role. Some people are assuming that Holmgren will come back to take that job along with the Presidency of the team. I don’t think that will happen. Holmgren didn’t have a great history drafting players. Check out my analysis of his draft history on NFLDraftDog.com.

Browns lose all hope.

The Browns lost their best player on D—NT Rogers and best player on O—RB Lewis to the IR. What will hurt even more, their best player overall in Mr. Everything, Cribbs. Cribbs let a kickoff free ball lay in the end zone against the Bengals. That was not a brain cramp; it was a signal that he has given up on the team, the coaching staff and his chance for getting the contract that he was promised. Again, I will comment on this more in my weekly article on NFLDraftDog.com.

That’s what I think. Tell me what you think.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He is a senior writer for and edits https://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on and edits .

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