Put a sock in Michigan State!

Oct 3, 2006 5:26 AM

The fourth quarter meltdown against Notre Dame wasn’t bad enough so Michigan State decided to lose outright against Illinois as 24-point favorites.

In East Lansing, no less.

John L. Smith has done his best to be known as former Spartans coach. We’re betting he succeeds by the end of the year.

As for other lowlights:

”¡ So much for the high praise Kirk Ferentz and Drew Tate have earned over the last four years. Biggest game in Iowa history, prime time at night in Iowa City against No. 1 Ohio State was blowout city. The Buckeyes more than lived up to their 6½-point favorite status, using the power game in a dominating 38-17 road victory.

”¡ Speaking of soon to be ex-coaches, Larry Coker added more fuel to the Miami inferno after barely escaping Houston 14-13.

”¡ A source I know is in hiding after guarantee that UNLV would beat Nevada. Fortunately, I knew better. The easiest win of last week boosted the season record over the dreaded Mendoza Line (.500 in betting circles). For the second straight week, the battle between dogs and favorites came down to the added board. This time the dogs prevailed, 23-21-1.

Now to this week’s slate, which we’ll call "Your Team Can Be A Redneck Saturday" in tribute to a Jeff Foxworthy show I saw on TNN between games.

Oregon +5½ at Cal: Winner has the inside shot to dethrone USC in the Pac 10. This matchup is dead even, so we’ll grab what points there are with the dog. OREGON.

Tennessee 2½ at Georgia: Two great defenses, but only one good offense. Ainge’s QB play is the difference. TENN.

Nebraska -7 at Iowa St: The Huskers were pushed to OT to beat Kansas. The Cyclones will be a lot tougher task in Ames. IOWA ST.

UNLV +15 at Colorado State: Remember the Rebels at Hawaii and against Nevada? Ditto in very happy Fort Collins. COLO ST.

Kent -24½ at Temple: Flash, Temple scores against Kent and covers again! TEMPLE.

Duke +29½ at Alabama: The Crimson Tide will just show up for this snoozer, but hasn’t shown an offense to warrant giving this number. DUKE.

Stanford +31½ Notre Dame: No way the Irish should lay this many with that porous defense. Purdue proved that last week. STANFORD.

San Diego St +27½ at BYU: San Jose crushed the Aztecs last week. Imagine what improving Cougars will do. BYU.

Navy +3 at Air Force: The Middies were awesome last week at UConn and have the power running attack to nab Commander and Chiefs trophy. NAVY.

W. Virginia -27 at Miss St: Strange nonconference matchup this time of year. Mounties win, but Dogs will play D. MISS ST.

Texas A&M -2 at Kansas: Both off bitter losses. Coming home to Lawrence will be the deciding factor. KANSAS.

Maryland +13½ at Ga Tech: Have a feeling this line could be out of whack following Tech’s big upset at Virginia Tech. Terps well rested. MARYLAND.

Vanderbilt -1½ at Ole Miss: Two straight wins for Vandy? Rebels did put a lot into loss to Georgia. VANDY.