Week One of the annual Butch v. Tommy collegiate football square dance went pretty much exactly how most of the Week One's of the past have gone - with Butch taking the early lead and Tommy coming back to even it up or take the lead. In this case, it was Tommy talking the slim first week lead after Butch took the main event in the LeGarrette Blount Handshake Invitational. In the actual game itself between Blount's Oregon squad and Boise State, Butch took hideous blue turf to blind the Nikes and that is what happened. But after Blount made a mockery out of, in order - college football, ESPN, NCAA, Oregon, the American Football Coaches Association and just good sportsmanship in general, Butch was discombobulated. Blount was not alone. Georgia and Oklahoma State could not seem to grasp the concept of good sportsmanship either. Needless to say, with the moon affecting the tides and werewolves and the Earth beginning to spin sideways, the effect from Blount finally took shape midway through the second quarter of the game between Tommy's boys of Troy and San Jose State. Tommy then reversed course and overtook Butch for the first week lead and even barely got himself above the vaunted .500 Tommy Line! Congratulations, Tommy - here is your cookie. This week, no cookie for you.
Tommy: Well, the Dynamic Duo didn't embarrass themselves last weekend like LeGarrette Blount did, but it wasn't a banner week of picks either. Fortunately, unlike Blount, no one can kick us off the website, so the picking continues. So don't trash talk us, because we will smack ya on the jaw while you're being distracted by someone, and then we'll hop around on our tippy toes. This week, Cal and Arizona avoid our wrath by playing some high quality Division I-AA [now FCS] competition, and ASU takes a week off to prepare for a huge home game against Louisiana-Monroe. So let's start with the only game that anyone really cares about.
Butch: Butch and Tommy are veritable pillars of the community - until nog is involved, then Tommy is on his own - but it is impossible to determine what our reactions would be after we had been thoroughly de-sensitized by prolonged exposure to blue turf. Certainly that is one definition of torture. But there is no compassion for Blount since he decided to be a Nike all on his own and that is exactly what all Nikes want - media attention - Look at us! Look at us! We're over here - look at us! Meanwhile, all Butch wants this week is for teams to play defense all the way through their games, up to and including the last three seconds.
Stanford at Wake Forest (-2.5)
Tommy: Could the Cardinal be on the march to a 5-0 start? This game could tell the tale. The Deacs were horrendous last week in a home loss to Baylor, and Tommy thinks the mighty Trees will run right over whatever the hell a Demon Deacon is. Harbaugh's Expensive Turd Storage-28, Successful Program That No One Cares About-21.
Butch: Butch thinks the Trees - or rather, Toby Gerhart - will run over many people this year as long as Gerhart and the offensive line stays healthy. That should give Harbaugh plenty of time to read magazines and draw up plays in his new gold-plated toilet. Butch takes the Trees to win and cover.
Purdue at Oregon (-11.5)
Tommy: Wait a minute here. The Ducks are a double digit favorite over anyone? Did Vegas see the game last Thursday? Still, Tommy can't get excited about a team that gave up 31 points to Toledo at home, and Oregon has been pretty decent at home against non-conference teams when it comes to the spread. So Tommy closes his eyes, takes a tequila shot like Shawne Merriman, and takes Phil Knight's mercenaries to cover. Mike Tyson-38, Glass Joe-24.
Butch: This is going to be close because the Nikes will have to figure out which is worse - embarrassing themselves and everyone associated with college football last week or embarrassing only themselves this week if they let Purdue get within two touchdowns of them. Nip and tuck here, but Butch will plug his nose and go the other direction because at least Boilermakers are more pleasant to drink than taking the Nikes to cover. Butch takes Purdue to cover.
Idaho at Washington (-21)
Tommy: (Cartoon noise where character shakes his head in disbelief). Huskies favored by three TDs???!!! Haven't seen that in awhile. What's even scarier is that Tommy likes that action. Too bad he didn't go with his first instinct and pick the Sarkpups to cover last week. Well, there's no time like the present. It will be up to UW this year to vanquish WSU's greatest rival, since the Cougs ducked the Vandals this year. Renaissance?-35, Butch Is Too Scared Of These Guys-10.
Butch: Yeah, they covered against an SEC team too bothered to take them seriously to even play defense in the last three seconds because they were already thinking how many beignets they were going to scarf down when they got home. It is also because LSU was still stunned from finding out they actually had to travel to a non-conference road game outside their time zone and against a so-called Division I team [Okay, so it is a Division I team that has not won a game in two years, but still…]. Idaho beat a New Mexico State team who had not eaten anything but Top Ramen in the last two days, so their 1-0 record is deceiving and Butch also takes the Hussies to win and cover.
UCLA at Tennessee (-7.5)
Tommy: The Bruins were fairly impressive after falling behind mighty SDSU 14-3. But it's Rocky Top time, and Lane Kiffin has a soft spot in his heart for the Powders. No miracles this year, as the Vols will jump on top early and pound The Greatest Coaching Staff In History into submission with their running game and a suffocating defense. The Coach Most Hated By SC Fans-31, Rick Neuheisel-9.
Butch: It would be funny, would it not, Tommy, if both former USC assistant coaches began the year losing to their first two real Division I opponents? Yeah, Butch knows Tennessee played Western Kentucky last week [following in that hallowed SEC tradition for playing tough non-conference games] but WKU is in their first year - after two transitional years - of D-1 legitimacy. Well, it would be if Tennessee were playing one, which they are not. Butch also takes the Hillbillies to win and cover.
Hawai'i (-2) vs. Wazzu
Tommy: Tommy feels sorry for Butch and his woeful Cougs, so he'll throw that furry goofball a bone and pick his beloved bums to win one in every Coug's favorite city. Congrats, in advance, on eking out a win over a team that barely beat Central Arkansas. Woeful, But They Still Own The Huskies-24, Who Misses The Other The Most: Hawaii Or Junes Jones?-23.
Butch: Oh good, pity - thanks a bunch, Tommy, that is extremely thoughtful of you. The Cougars are unlikely to require it this week though as Butch sees a little wider margin of victory than a single point as he takes Wazzu to win and cover in the dreaded "Seattle Game".
USC (-7) at Ohio State
Tommy: Time to take out the trash again. The Bucks have been a hospitable host this season, shaking hands with Navy before the game, running out of the tunnel with the Middies, and then doing everything they could to give them the win. They'll really be helpful this weekend by bending over and grabbing their ankles. Giving up 186 yards rushing is acceptable, but barely getting 150 against a team that gave up 200+ five times last year is not a good sign. Just watch last year's game, flop jersey colors, lower the crowd noise way down after a quarter, and that's what you'll get. Good Guys-31, Yes, Virginia, The Big Ten Does Suck-10.
Butch: Well, Tommy's boys played exactly as Butch expected them to in the first two quarters of last week's game against juggernaut San Jose State [that prepared them well for the Shoe…] before the Spartans figured the game was over and they did not have to play any longer. In the Navy, you can sail the seven seas and also give the Jethros a wake-up call, which is what the male goats did last week in Columbus. Butch thinks the Jethros might be a bit better prepared this week than they were last week and takes all seven points in picking the Jethros to cover.
Oregon State (-7) at UNLV
Tommy: HMMMMMM! This one bothers Tommy a little. The Beavs are world renowned for their September road clunkers. They are 1-8 against the spread on the road in September in the last five seasons. That's scary stuff. But come on, it's UNLV, right? Well, the Rebs showed some signs of life last season. The Skirted One doesn't have the nerve to pick an outright upset, but will go with recent history and take the Rebs to cover. Team With Two Star Midgets-24, Where Disgruntled SC Transfers Go To Disappear-21.
Butch: Butch is with you approximately 81% on this one, Tommy, and if he had got three more points, he would have been 100% with you. But seven points is a little too slim - that's only one possession - so Butch feels as though the Rodentry can cover that skimpy spread and picks them to do that.
Notre Dame (-3.5) at Michigan
Tommy: Beat back to back sorry defenses in Hawai'i and Nevada, and suddenly The Emu thinks he's Joe Montana. Time to welcome the Irish back to Earth. Ann Arbor has been a house of horrors for ND and their fans, and...wait for it, wait for it...it's time for RichRod to stop crying and do his usual solid rebuilding job. Hail To The Criers-22, Kiss Your Job Goodbye, Chuckie-21.
Butch:Oh man, is this a real winner of a game or what? Good thing Butch does not have to blind himself by watching it. Tie.
Utah (-14) at San Jose State
Tommy: Gotta mix in a west coast game so Butch doesn't get too ornery. Tommy didn't like what he saw from the Utes in week one. Call this one a hunch, but the Spartans will run the ball at home and cover. We Own Alabama-30, We Owned SC...For A Quarter-23.
Butch: Yeah, but Butch bets you liked how the Spartans rolled over and played dead in the second half last week, eh, Tommy? Butch does not know if they practice opponent polygamy in Utah but the game is in California anyway and Butch takes the Utes to win and cover.
Fresno State at Wisconsin (-8.5)
Tommy: Tommy loves the Dogs in this one. The Badgers had to squeak one out last year against angry Pat Hill, and FSU has a better squad this year. Smells like an upset. Never Has A Coach Looked So Much Like The Team Mascot-21, Reeks Of Beer And Cheese-17.
Butch:Butch likes beer, brats and cheese and it would be utter sacrilege to pick against any one of those three. Butch takes cheese to win and cover.
Last Week: 4-3
Last Week: 3-4
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