Hlastradamus: Foggy on Hawkeyes, clear on Illini
Listen to Hlastradamus. LISTEN TO HIM!
Hlastradamus doesn't hold grudges. Centuries are too short for that.
The Prophet of Profit could be bitter about Illinois intentionally taking a safety late in its game against Purdue last week, giving the Boilermakers the cover after Hlastradamus touted the Illini. But the Seer still went 3-2 against the spread, and every 3-2 is a good 3-2. Unless it could have been 3-1-1, which it would have been were it not for that (expletive deleted) safety.
You may remember that Hlastradamus called Oklahoma State +9.5 vs. Baylor his second Lock of the Year. (There can only be one Lock of the Year for mortals, but the prophet plays by different rules than you.) Well, that was stealing, and that was sage.
The sage's season record is a wondrous 36-28-1, and it's 32-17-1 after a confounding 4-11 start. It's only going to get better, because Hlastradamus is full of good vibes. He's having Thanksgiving dinner with the spirit of Marilyn Monroe.
But he sends word that he is not making a call on the Iowa-Nebraska game. He sees turbulence, even chaos in Lincoln. And that's just traveling sportswriters trying to find something decent to eat there on Thanksgiving night.
On with this week's pearls:
Illinois +4 vs. Northwestern. Let's see. You have a home team that has just snapped its 20-game Big Ten losing streak and is feeling kind of good about itself against a weary visitor that had much expected of it but is 0-7 in the conference. And the feeling-good team is a 4-point underdog at home? Sweet!
Michigan State -14.5 vs. Minnesota. Hlastradamus sees one small challenge for the Gophers in this game. Namely, scoring points. Minny got 7 points and less than 160 yards against Wisconsin at home. Look for total lockdown in this one, with MSU scoring enough to cover and then some.
Texas -4.5 vs. Texas Tech (Thu.). After beating seven undistinguished teams in succession, the Red Raiders of Texas Tech have lost four straight games and failed to cover in any of them. The Big Ten team that meets Texas Tech in the Texas Bowl will have the rare distinction of meeting a team in a bowl that owns a 5-game losing streak. Isn't that special?
Stanford -14 vs. Notre Dame. Stanford has beaten Arizona State, Washington, UCLA and Oregon. Stanford is real. Notre Dame is a house of cards. This will be a very enjoyable lead-in to the Pac-12 title game for the Cardinal.
Fresno State +7.5 at San Jose State (Fri.). San Jose State lost to Navy in triple-overtime last Friday with shameful defense. There went its shot at bowl-eligibility, unless it beats Fresno. Which it won't. The Bulldogs are chasing perfection. They have scored 41 or more points in seven games. San Jose doesn't keep up.