INDEPENDENCE - For Independence, the prep football season opener bore little resemblance to its winless 2016 campaign.
Even in defeat, a clear message was sent that there are brighter days ahead for the Mustangs.
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Hlastradamus is a homer.
No, he doesn’t root for Iowa teams. But he handicaps them with a brilliance normally shown only by prophets.
Wait a second. He is a prophet!
He correctly said last week that Iowa would fail to cover the spread at Rutgers and Iowa State would indeed cover against San Jose State. Check, and check.
Except the seer picked four other games, and got them all wrong for a season record of 10-12-1, so he needs to check himself.
This week, Hlastradamus returns to a global view of things. For instance, he noticed that new Starbucks shops continue to spring up in Belgium. With that devotion to detail, you better heed these picks:
Northwestern +13 at Iowa
Frankly, the prophet is irked at Northwestern for failing to cover against Nebraska last week in direct defiance of the crystal ball.
It’s like, what the heck, man?
But here’s what he sees now: Iowa didn’t cover against Miami (Ohio), North Dakota State or Rutgers. That puts a scarlet letter on black-and-gold until the Hawkeyes do something about it.
Iowa State +16.5 vs. Baylor
Baylor is one of the most-popular plays around America this week. But Hlastradamus is unmoved.
For one thing, the Bears’ one road game was a cover failure at Rice. For another, Baylor has bad karma for reasons you surely know.
Some will tell you there’s no such thing as karma. Hlastradamus says saying that is the surest way to bring bad karma upon yourself.
Michigan -11 vs. Wisconsin
Wisconsin clubbed Michigan State last week in East Lansing.
But Hlastradamus can hear the voice of Fredo Corleone saying “Badgers, you don’t come to Michigan and treat a team like the Wolverines that way!”
He’s a big “Godfather” buff.
Indiana +6.5 vs. Michigan State
No one can say Hlastradamus isn’t brave. Well, anyone can say it. So scratch that.
But he feels the night game atmosphere and Indiana’s entertaining offense will combine to make this ... something.
Rutgers +38.5 at Ohio State
When you ride with Rutgers, you ride alone.
This could be 38-0 at the end of the first quarter. But Hlastradamus is so unaccustomed to seeing this kind of a number in a Big Ten conference game that he immediately bit on it.
It’s the swallowing that’s the difficult part.
Nebraska -21 vs. Illinois
The seer sees an Illinois team that got trampled at home by North Carolina and Western Michigan. He sees a Nebraska team that is playing good ball.
He sees trees of green, red roses too. He sees them bloom for me and you. And he thinks to himself ... what a wonderful world.