USM vs. FIU: Someone has to win
They have lost 16 straight games, the nation’s longest losing streak. They have lost four this year by a combined score of 162-38. They gave 60 points last Saturday night.
These are not your daddy’s Southern Miss Golden Eagles.
And yet when Vegas oddsmakers put out the pointspreads on this week’s games, there was Southern Miss a 16.5-point favorite over Florida International.
USM hasn’t scored 16 points yet this season! The Golden Eagles haven’t won a game in more than 600 days.
Counter that with this: FIU, also 0-4, has been outscored by an average score of 47-6. The Golden Panthers rank dead last in Division I in points scored and points allowed. Bad combination.
First prediction of the day: The team that loses this one won’t win one this season.
Southern Miss 30, FIU 10 — Seriously, what has happened to USM since a Hawaii Bowl victory on Dec. 24, 2011, ranks as one of the most startling turn-arounds I have ever witnessed, not just in sports but in anything. From 12-2 and a field goal away from the Sugar Bowl, USM has dropped 16 straight. It has to end sometime. That time is Saturday. I think…
LSU 24, State 20 — The Bulldogs couldn’t catch the Tigers at a better time. State’s had an extra week to get ready. LSU is coming of a gut-wrenching, emotionally and physically draining loss at Georgia. State can win this game — and might.
Ole Miss 27, Auburn 24 — Crucial game for the Rebels who need a road victory in the worst way headed into a six-game home stretch. Get this: After Saturday’s game at Auburn, the Rebels don’t leave Mississippi again this regular season with only the Egg Bowl left to play on the road.
Jackson State 27, Arkansas-Pine Bluff 17 — UAPB, the alma mater of the great L.C. Greenwood, is 0-4 coming into this matchup at The Vet. The best bet is that JSU will recognize Greenwood, who died Monday, at some point during pre-game or halftime ceremonies.
Georgia 37, Tennessee 27 — Mark Richt’s Bulldogs look like the best team in the Eastern Division right now.
Florida 27, Arkansas 17 — Tyler Murphy makes his first start at quarterback for the Gators after an auspicious debut off the bench against Tennessee last week.
South Carolina 24, Kentucky 13 — Gamecocks will miss quarterback Conner Shaw for the next two weeks at least but could probably win this one with the ol’ ball coach at quarterback.
Vanderbilt 27, Missouri 20 — Good news Missouri fans: You are undefeated and averaging 45 points a game through four games. Bad news Missouri fans: You begin SEC play this week.
Oregon 52, Colorado 14 — I put this one here so I could say this: Sure looks like we could be headed toward an Oregon-Alabama national championship matchup, and that might be the most intriguing championship game yet.
Saints 27, Bears 24 — The oddsmakers make this a pick-it game, but I’ll take Drew Brees over Jay Cutler, even on the road, any day.
Last week predictions produced an 8-2 record. Nick Saban wouldn’t like it, but I’ll take it. For the season, I am 43-9 for 82.7 percent. Again, Saban wouldn’t be able to sleep at night. I can.