Weekly Staff Pick ’em – Round 5

Round 5 of the weekly staff pick 'em is here. We will be examining the top games of the week across the NCAA and NFL. This week's special guest picker is Jeffrey DeSpain. Here are the results from last week:

Micah: 8-2
Blake: 6-4
Fraze: 7-3

Micah: 25-15
Blake: 22-18
Guest: 23-17

We'll keep a running tally each week of the previous week's results as well as the overall numbers. Here are the picks for round 5:

Continue reading Weekly Staff Pick ’em – Round 5


#5 TCU Horned Frogs (9-1) at Texas Longhorns (6-5)
Micah's Pick: Horned Frogs 38 – 21
TCU is on the playoffs bubble. This is a bit of a trap game that looks like a cakewalk on paper, but the horns have been playing some decent ball lately. I think the Horned Frogs win it, but the Longhorns keep it close until late.

Blake's Pick: Horned Frogs 28 – 20
This sets up as a major trap game for TCU. Texas’ defense is really, really good, especially up front. The problem lies in Texas’ offense. They are inept through the air, and TCU has a capable defense. While Texas will try to control the game by ground and pound, TCU will be too explosive in the end. Lot closer game than most expect.

Jeffrey's Pick: Horned Frogs 21 – 17
The Lone Star state showdown between the Frog and the Horns will be all defenses. The Longhorn’s top 25 defense will give Trevone Boykin fits, but the Horned Frogs should be able to put up enough points to sneak by Texas in this one and have a legitimate shot at the 4 team playoff.


Stanford Cardinal (6-5) at #9 UCLA Bruins (9-2)
Micah's Pick: Bruins 31 – 17
UCLA has by and large flown a bit under the radar this season. They are a quality team who continues to win after a mid-season 2 game blip. Look for the Bruins to handle the struggling Cardinal.

Blake's Pick: Bruins 31 – 21
This has been a disappointing season for Stanford. People have come to expect BCS bowls or bust for the Cardinal. UCLA is pretty good. Not elite, to me, but really good. Brett Hundley is capable QB who will control this game when it matters most. 

Jeffrey's Pick: Bruins 28 – 14
The Bruins will win this in dominating fashion behind great quarterback play from Brett Hundley. The Bruins have too many playmakers for Stanford to keep up with. The Bruins coming off a Rose Bowl victory over USC, will pick up their fourth straight victory over the Cardinal.​


#13 Arizona State Sun Devils (9-2) at #15 Arizona Wildcats (9-2)
Micah's Pick: Wildcats 35 – 31
An in-state rivalry with lots of implications. Both teams have been a bit of a surprise this year at 9-2 a piece. I like the Wildcats to squeak it out.

Blake's Pick: Wildcats 38 – 35
The battle in the desert will be a fun, shootout. Both coaches are offensive geniuses. Todd Graham will throw the kitchen sink at the Cats, but the Cats are playing at home, and when all else fails, rely on the rowdy student section!

Jeffrey's Pick: Wildcats 35 – 31
What a great match up out in the desert. Arizona coming into today’s game with a ton of confidence beating Utah on the road last week in handily fashion. However, things will not be easy at home as the Arizona State Sun Devils are (4-1) against teams ranked in the top 25. It looks like a shootout in this one with the Wildcats outscoring the Sun Devils.​


#14 Auburn Tigers(8-3) at #1 Alabama Crimson Tide (10-1)
Micah's Pick: Crimson Tide 24 – 14
The Tigers pulled off the impossible last year when they took down the Crimson Tide on a last second field goal return. The Tide remembers and the Tide will roll.

Blake's Pick: Crimson Tide 33 – 24
Think Saban and company are half mad about last year? I do… I think this game is over half way through the contest, and Auburn scores a meaningless TD or two at the end. Alabama won’t get beat at home again by Auburn. If they do? Mass riots. 

Jeffrey's Pick: Crimson Tide 24 – 7
The Tide are simply "rolling" over every in their path. Auburn catches the Tide on a 6 game winning streak with wins over Arkansas, Texas A&M, LSU and what was number one Mississippi State. The Auburn Tigers started this year off hot and as of late have faded. Bama’s top 5 defense is just too good in this year’s Iron Bowl and should win this one easily over the Tigers.​


#4 Mississippi State Bulldogs (9-1) at #8 Ole Miss Rebels (8-3)
Micah's Pick: Bulldogs 30 – 17
Another big time in-state rivalry that is arguably a bigger surprise. Who predicted these two Mississippi schools to be ranked in the top 10 nearing December? The Rebels would love to play spoiler, but the Bulldogs survive.

Blake's Pick: Bulldogs 40 – 21
I think Ole Miss is officially deflated. An embarrassing loss at Arkansas has took the wind out of its sails. They’ll come out fired up to play their cross state rivals, but too much Prescott and Mississippi State in the end. 

Jeffrey's Pick: Bulldogs 31 – 21
Just five weeks ago this matchup had the makings of a #1 vs #2 Egg Bowl showdown. Since then both teams have suffered loses, but Mississippi State still has a great chance of making to the 4 team playoff with a win over rival Ole Miss. The last time both teams were ranked coming into the game was 1999 when the Bulldogs won by 3. Quarterback play will be the difference in this in state rivalry as Dak Prescott will lead the Bulldogs with his ability to throw outside the pocket and scramble when needed. ​


Florida Gators (6-4) at #3 Florida State Seminoles (11-0)
Micah's Pick: Seminoles 28 – 27
I would love nothing more than to see the Gators pull off the upset and knock the Seminoles out of the playoffs race, but there's something unexplainable happening with FSU this year. They should've lost 3 or 4 times already, but yet keep pulling off comeback miracles somehow. I'm not betting against them anymore.

Blake's Pick: Seminoles 31 – 28
I’m done doubting the Seminoles. They have made me look like a fool 3 times this year. Florida will be playing for Muschamp. The players love him and they’ll do whatever it takes to beat their rivals for him. This FSU team is not as good as last year, but "all they do is win, win, win no matter what." It’s unbelievable.

Jeffrey's Pick: Seminoles 24 – 17
The Noles continue game in and game out to find ways to win late. Now in state rival Florida comes to Tallahassee to give FSU their last test of the season. It sounds like the Gators will be giving the start to the freshman QB Treon Harris who has been splitting reps with Driskel the latter part of the season. The freshman will have trouble in this one as the Noles defense will out man the Gators offense and the Heisman winner Jameis Winston will be able to put up enough points to come away with the victory.​


#18 Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (9-2) at #10 Georgia Bulldogs (9-2)
Micah's Pick: Bulldogs 31 – 20
Had Georgia not slipped up against a down Florida team, they would be in the drivers seat right now for a playoff spot. While the Yellow Jackets have had a great year, I see Georgia taking care of business. The Bulldogs will then need some help from Arkansas to find their way into an SEC conference championship game.

Blake's Pick: Bulldogs 30 – 28
This comes down to the wire, I think. People are sleeping on Georgia Tech. They’re a sound football team. They control the clock and nickel and dime you to death. Nick Chubb has made it look easy in Todd Gurley’s absence. Now with Gurley out for the year, this is Chubb’s team. Don’t be shocked if the Jackets pull off the upset!

Jeffrey's Pick: Bulldogs 45 – 28
Two schools separated by 70 mile will continue this Clean, Old-Fashioned Hate rivalry Saturday in Athens. The Bulldogs schedule this year was extremely favorable to make it to the 4 team playoff until a loss to the like of Florida a few weeks ago. Since then the Bulldogs have won three straight and will continue to run wild with the two headed back field of Todd Gurley and Nick Chubb.  The SEC is just too much for the ACC in this one.​


#25 Minnesota Golden Gophers (8-3) at #16 Wisconsin Badgers (9-2)
Micah's Pick: Badgers 38 – 21
Wisconsin downs the Minnesota en route to the Big 10 title game. Gordon is a legit Heisman candidate and will run all over the poor Golden Gophers.

Blake's Pick: Badgers 34 – 33
Minnesota is a nice team. They had Ohio State on the ropes, and really could have won that game. They went to Nebraska and came back from a 14-point deficit. However, Wisconsin has this guy named Melvin Gordon… He’s only got 2,000+ yards and my choice to win the Heisman. Those Wisconsin RBs are something else. 

Jeffrey's Pick: Badgers 28 – 17
The Paul Bunyan Axe is on the line in a rivalry that dates back in 1980. Wisconsin, who is led by Heisman candidate Melvin Gordon who has rushed for 2109 yards and 25 touchdowns, will have no problem controlling this game on the ground against the Gophers. Look for the Badgers to take this one by a couple of scores.​



Philadelphia Eagles (8-3) at Dallas Cowboys (8-3)
Micah's Pick: Eagles 35 – 28
I have a bad feeling about the Eagles coming to Jerry World on Thanksgiving. I would love to see the Cowboys dominate the Eagles and take hold of the NFC East, but my gut doesn't have that same feeling. Dirty Sanchez somehow out-duels Romo.

Blake's Pick: Cowboys 35 – 34
What a game this will be. The winner of this one controls the NFC East and likely wins the division. Tony Romo is playing outstanding football. Mark Sanchez is not bad, but I don’t see him taking a game over, which is what will take. The Eagles will get theirs, but too much Romo, Dez, DeMarco and company.

Jeffrey's Pick: Cowboys 31 – 27
America's team pulled off a great win last week over the Giants. Now the Cowboys take on their divisional rivals in a battle of the top two teams in the NFC East. The Eagles behind play of backup QB Mark Sanchez will struggle on the road (2-3) and will not be able to run with the potent offense for the Cowboys.​


New England Patriots (9-2) at Green Bay Packers (8-3)
Micah's Pick: Patriots 42 – 34
Wow, what a match-up. Potentially the top two teams in the league squaring off in week 13. This is truly a toss-up game and while I'd prefer to Green Bay take down the Patriots, my gut once again says not to bet against Shady Brady.

Blake's Pick: Packers 40 – 31
Aaron Rodgers isn’t human. He’s got to be a robot of some sort. 30 TD and 3 INT. Are you kidding me? Meanwhile, Brady has his bunch rolling. Who knows who will get the carries in Lambeau, but whoever it is, I’m sure will kill it.  In the end, the robot wins. Discount DAHHHHHHBLE CHECK!

Jeffrey's Pick: Patriots 28 – 24
This one has the matchup to be a dandy. Tom Brady and the Pats are playing very well winning 7 in a row with wins over Denver, Indianapolis and Detroit. The Packers however are extremely hard to beat at Lambeau Field. This game should play out to be the best game week 13 has to offer. I give the nod to Brady and the Pats they are clicking from all cylinders right now.​

Weekly Staff Pick ’em – Round 4

Round 4 of the weekly staff pick 'em is underway. We will be examining the top games of the week across the NBA, NCAA, and NFL. This week's special guest picker is the one and only Fraze himself. Here are the results from last week:

Micah: 5-5
Blake: 5-5
Marcus: 4-6

Micah: 17-13
Blake: 16-14
Guest: 16-14

We'll keep a running tally each week of the previous week's results as well as the overall numbers. Here are the picks for round 4:

Continue reading Weekly Staff Pick ’em – Round 4


Oklahoma City Thunder (3-8) at Denver Nuggets (3-7)
Micah's Pick: Nuggets 97 – 90
The Thunder are the most depleted team in the league. It's a wonder they've even won 3 games with the lineup they're throwing out there right now. While this is a prime match-up to steal, the Nuggets just beat the Cavs on Monday night. Should be a walk in the park against the Thunder's D-League team.

Blake's Pick: Nuggets 93 – 88
The poor Thunder are so close to being like 10-1, even with all these injuries. This group needs figure out "how to win". I like Denver at home.

Fraze's Pick: Thunder 93 – 87
For a team that hands out Handicap parking passes to their players, the Thunder are still keeping themselves close in a lot of games. Rumble and his merry men stampede the Nugs.


Dallas Mavericks (8-3) at Washington Wizards (7-2)
Micah's Pick: Mavericks 112 – 98
The Mavs are actually a very solid bunch this year. They're getting the 2011 band back together and then some. Should be very interesting to see how they do in a loaded western conference this year, but I like them taking down this Wizards this week.

Blake's Pick: Wizards 101 – 99
This will be fun. The veteran bunch of Mavs vs the youth of the Wiz. Wall, Beal, Gortat, Pierce, Nene… Scary. I'll go Wiz.

Fraze's Pick: Mavericks 104 – 91
Both of these teams have surprised me a bit, the Wizards especially. However, I’ll take Dirty Dirk and the Fighting Cubans.



Kansas Jayhawks (3-7) at Oklahoma Sooners (7-3)
Micah's Pick: Sooners 34 – 13
The Jayhawks are coming off of their best performance of the season vs TCU. A game they maybe should have won, but let slip away late. The Sooners struggled against Tech last week until establishing the run game in the second half. What should be another easy match-up I'm sure will turn into a struggle again until late. 

Blake's Pick: Sooners 45 – 17
I know the Jayhawks are much improved. Kudos to them and their new coach. However, too much size and athleticism from OU. 

Fraze's Pick: Sooners 40 – 14
If it’s any surprise, the Jayhawks have been BETTER since firing Weis, including a dominate victory over ISU and a near upset of a very good TCU team. Fortunately for Big Jay, basketball season is tipping off so they won’t feel the hurt of this loss too badly. 


Kansas State Wildcats (7-2) at West Virginia Mountaineers (6-4)
Micah's Pick: Mountaineers 42 – 28
West Virginia is better than their 6-4 record shows. They have hung with or defeated every opponent on their schedule. Now they've lost two in a row and the last loss to Texas was a bad one, but I see a bounce back here for Holgorsen and crew.

Blake's Pick: Wildcats 33 – 27
This is a contrast of styles. KState will be sound and fundamental. WVU will be aggressive and flying around. Bill Snyder is the difference.

Fraze's Pick: Mountaineers 42 – 39
This is one of the tougher picks of the week for me. KSU has been good, but WVU has been really good in Morgantown.  Mountaineers make Wildcat–skin caps out of Snyder’s kittens but it’s a near death experience in a close one.


USC Trojans (7-3) at UCLA Bruins (8-2)
Micah's Pick: Bruins 31 – 28
Both teams have had good but not great years. Lots of talent on both sides of the ball, this should be a very close game that could easily go either way. I like the Bruins to win it in a close one.

Blake's Pick: Trojans 27 – 24
I don't know, and I really don't care…..

Fraze's Pick: Bruins 24 – 21
This is a game that will help decide the PAC 12 south and both of these teams are chomping at the bit for a shot against Oregon and their fancy uniforms. Bruins will win this on home field advantage.


Louisville Cardinals (7-3) at Notre Dame Fighting Irish (7-3)
Micah's Pick: Cardinals 31 – 21
While it's hard to imagine the Irish losing a third straight, I just think the Cardinals are playing really well right now. This should be another close one, but Louisville goes into South Bend and gets the W.

Blake's Pick: Fighting Irish 34 – 31
What has happened to ND? Did the effects of losing that game to FSU end their season? Whatever the case, losing at home to Northwestern is crazy.

Fraze's Pick: Fighting Irish 28 – 24
I would love to say the Irish lose a 3rd straight, but Petrino still has some work to do to get the Cards in shape to win a big one like this. ND rolls, but Louisville keeps it close and Bobby P takes a scooter ride with an intern to relieve the sting of defeat.



Dallas Cowboys (7-3) at New York Giants (3-7)
Micah's Pick: Cowboys 35 – 17
This is a big game for the Cowboys. They need the division wins right now and the Giants are just playing spoiler at this point. Murray rushes for 100 yards and Eli throws a handful of picks.

Blake's Pick: Cowboys 28 – 17
Sounds crazy, but I think Dallas HAS to have this one. I think the bye was advantageous and Romo will be a lot better.

Fraze's Pick: Cowboys 28 – 7
Not sure anyone has ever had a bye week as successful as the Cowboys last week. Romo is a little more rehabbed and Eli seemed to be a tad color blind this past week.


Detroit Lions (7-3) at New England Patriots (8-2)
Micah's Pick: Patriots 37 – 28
Brady and the Patriots have been on a terror. The Lions have won a bunch of close games, but this one could get ugly if Stafford doesn't show up early.

Blake's Pick: Patriots 37 – 17
Lions are so grease lucky. They'll get their world handed to them vs New England.

Fraze's Pick: Patriots 45 – 20
Tom Brady has definitely shut the haters up from the first part of the season and Megatron has been more of a Mediocretron. Lions can’t do it in Foxboro.


Arizona Cardinals (9-1) at Seattle Seahawks (6-4)
Micah's Pick: Cardinals 27 – 21
I'm sure that as soon as I pick against the Seahawks they will finally win (jerks). The Seahawks are back at home where they've still been very dominant and this is probably as good of a time as any for the Cardinals to let one slip, but I'm rolling the dice. Arizona in another close one.

Blake's Pick: Seahawks 28 – 20
If Carson Palmer is healthy, I ride the Cards…. I just can't. I don't trust Stanton, especially on the road….especially in the hawks den.

Fraze's Pick: Seahawks 31 – 14
Zona didn’t miss a beat in their first week without Carson Palmer, but the second week wont be as good for them. The 11th man will have something to say about this in the battle of the bird teams. Seahawks make a meal of their smaller avian foe.


Miami Dolphins (6-4) at Denver Broncos (7-3)
Micah's Pick: Broncos 45 – 17
The Broncos somehow lost to the Rams last week and I sense Peyton coming out firing this week. Miami has a very solid defense, but when you make Peyton mad, bad things happen.

Blake's Pick: Dolphins 31 – 30
The Rams beat the Broncos? How? I don't understand that at all. I want to call this upset, so bad…You know what? I will. FINS NATION 31-30!!! (I don't feel good about this at all)

Fraze's Pick: Broncos 34 – 20
I would call this an upset if those pesky Rams wouldn’t have gotten Peyton so angry last week. Fins down in Mile High this week, Broncos buck em 34-20. Sorry, Mayor!!

Weekly Staff Pick ’em – Round 3

This is round 3 of the weekly staff pick 'em where the Crimson Slate staff along with a guest picker examine the top games of the week across the NBA, NCAA, and NFL. This week's special guest picker is our good friend Marcus Kent. Here are the results from last week:

Micah: 4-6
Blake: 6-4
Shawn: 6-4

Micah: 12-8
Blake: 11-9
Guest: 12-8

We'll keep a running tally each week of the previous week's results as well as the overall numbers. Here are the picks for round 3:

Continue reading Weekly Staff Pick ’em – Round 3


Chicago Bulls (6-2) at Toronto Raptors (6-1)
Micah's Pick: Bulls 92  85
Seeing as how my NBA picks were so spot on last week (not), I'm gonna take another stab at it this week and hope for the best. Admittedly I have not watched a ton of NBA games yet this season, but I like the core of the Bulls this season.

Blake's Pick: Raptors 101 – 94
A healthy Rose is good for Chicago. Championship good. The Raptors have it rolling in Toronto. They could very well be the 2 seed in the East behind these Bulls. The Raptors are at home and that’s a big thing in the NBA.

Marcus' Pick: Raptors 105 – 92
That team up north keeps on winning and keeps on getting no love from the national media despite having the best record in the East. I expect a statement win regardless of how well Rose plays.


San Antonio Spurs (3-3) at Golden State Warriors (5-1)
Micah's Pick: Warriors 111 – 103
Popovich is already resting his senior players just a few games into the season. We all know the Spurs don't take the regular season serious for some reason and they especially don't care about these games in the first month or two. The Warriors burned me last week, I won't doubt them this week.

Blake's Pick: Warriors 104 – 99
As my cohort in crime mentioned earlier… Pop is already resting the Big 3. The Spurs are 2-3 and I don’t think they even care. Pop may want to be the greatest 8 seed of all time. The Warriors are legit good. They may have the best 1-2 guards in the game on the same team.

Marcus' Pick: Warriors 102 – 99
Steve Kerr is proving why he was such a hot coaching commodity last summer as he has the Warriors looking in mid-season form.



Mississippi State Bulldogs (9-0) at Alabama Crimson Tide (8-1)
Micah's Pick: Crimson Tide 20 – 13
Bama always seems to find a way to win and I see them squeaking out yet another one at home. Miss St has impressed everyone this year, but an undefeated season, especially in the SEC, is just almost impossible these days.

Blake's Pick: Crimson Tide 28 – 20
This one is HUGE. I think whoever wins this game will have their spot stamped in the playoff. The SEC West will again dominate the east in the SEC title game, sending the West champ to the playoffs. Alabama is starting to click. Mississippi State is the darling. I go with the home crowd.

Marcus' Pick: Bulldogs 42 – 38
Mississippi St continues its run as they go deep into the Lion’s den and win a tough physical fight.


Florida State Seminoles (9-0) at Miami Hurricanes (6-3)
Micah's Pick: Hurricanes 31 – 30
Florida State has been flirting with disaster all year long. They have nearly been upset too many times and I'm thinking this is finally the week it happens. As I mentioned in the previous prediction, it is very hard to go undefeated in the current landscape of college football. Doing it back to back years? I just don't see it happening.

Blake's Pick: Hurricanes 30 – 27
The Canes are going to be AMPED about this one. Duke Johnson and crew will get some big yards. I’ve picked against Florida State twice, and I’ll do it again. UPSET CITY IN SOUTH FLORIDA!

Marcus' Pick: Seminoles 42 – 31
Florida State will struggle early as they always do, but rally in the 2nd half to win the game.


Nebraska Cornhuskers (8-1) at Wisconsin Badgers (7-2)
Micah's Pick: Cornhuskers 35 – 24
Nebraska is 8-1? Who knew. Big 10 football isn't the most entertaining thing to watch in the world, but give me the Cornhuskers to make a push for a conference title.

Blake's Pick: Cornhuskers 27 – 21
Major Big 10 title hopes come alive after the Spartans go down last week. Nebraska is quietly 8-1 with their sole coming in the hands of Michigan St, in East Lansing, by 5 points. Wisconsin seems to be rolling as well. I like Bo Pelini and Abdullah to win this one.

Marcus' Pick: Cornhuskers 24 – 21
Two of the top running backs in the country square off in what could be classic. I think whoever as the ball last will win the game and Nebraska will keep its playoffs hope alive as Ameer Abdullah carries Nebraska home.


Oklahoma Sooners (6-3) at Texas Tech Red Raiders (3-6)
Micah's Pick: Sooners 47 – 20
If the Sooners don't come out and absolutely obliterate the Red Raiders, well the season is nearing catastrophe levels already, let's just assume they take care of business the rest of the way out for all of our sanity.

Blake's Pick: Sooners 38 – 24
OU is out of the relevant goals this year. No chance at a National Title or Big 12 title. The only thing they have to look forward to is pride. Can they muster some mojo to finish they year. Tech is in shambles at the QB position. Their best two now play at Virginia Tech and waiting on the bench at OU. 

Marcus' Pick: Sooners 35 – 21
If the Oklahoma team and coaching staff that was in Norman last week travel to Lubbock and make Kliff Kingsbury look like Bill Belichick, expect a head coaching vacancy to open up on their way back. That won’t happen as the Sooners cruise past the Red Raiders.



Philadelphia Eagles (6-2) at Green Bay Packers (6-3)
Micah's Pick: Packers 41 – 28
Since starting off the season a bit sluggish, the Packers have been red hot behind Aaron Rodgers. You're telling me this high profile match-up is Rodgers vs Sanchez? Ha, give me the discount double check in a landslide.

Blake's Pick: Packers 31 – 20
The Eagles must resort to Mark Sanchez for a few weeks to guide the troops. The Packers are nearly unstoppable at the time. All I can think about is Sanchez’s butt fumble…

Marcus' Pick: Packers 35 – 27
I’m picking the Packers to win this game for two reasons: They are rolling since Aaron Rodgers said “Relax” and they are playing at home where they’re nearly unbeatable.


Detroit Lions (7-2) at Arizona Cardinals (8-1)
Micah's Pick: Lions 27 – 17
While the Cardinals have been on a terror and feature the league's best record, losing Carson Palmer will hurt. The Lions just got Megatron and Reggie Bush back from injuries, look for them to knock off the Cardinals.

Blake's Pick: Cardinals 24 – 20
The Cardinals took a MAJOR blow by losing Palmer for the year, again. They’re really sound on defense and I still think they’re okay with Stanton. The Lions are pretty good, but they’re not LEGIT.

Marcus' Pick: Lions 28 – 24
This game should be a barn burner as the two best teams nobody likes to talk about battle it out. Drew Stanton will look well, but the Lions will beat the Cardinals.


New England Patriots (7-2) at Indianapolis Colts (6-3)
Micah's Pick: Patriots 42 – 31
Speaking of red hot, the Patriots have been dismantling every team in their way recently. Tom Brady is on a mission to prove he is still elite and capable of carrying his team. Luck will get his, but Brady wins this battle.

Blake's Pick: Patriots 31 – 27
Tom Brady is on another magical run. The Colts are "fair" on defense. I like Brady in just about every matchup, but Luck will get his, too. In the end, it’s all about experience.

Marcus' Pick: Colts 31 – 27
I’m picking the Colts to win this game as they’re coming off their bye week.


Seattle Seahawks (6-3) at Kansas City Chiefs (6-3)
Micah's Pick: Seahawks 24 – 13
The Seahawks have not been very impressive this season. After dominating the super bowl last year, they came out a bit flat this go round. I don't feel great about this pick, but it's more of an indictment against the Chiefs than an endorsement for the Seahawks.

Blake's Pick: Seahawks 23 – 17
The Chiefs just seem to "find a way." The Seahawks are sorta wobbling. I think this is the Seahawks' last run, as my prediction of Beast Mode Era will end after this season. Little too much L.O.B. for Alex Smith

Marcus' Pick: Chiefs 21 – 17
Seattle’s new found run game will hit a brick wall as they get a taste of their medicine and experience just how loud it can get in Kansas City. Expect the Chiefs to win this grind out game.

Weekly Staff Pick ’em – Round 2

Welcome back to round two of the new weekly staff pick 'em where the Crimson Slate staff along with a guest picker examine the top games of the week across the NBA, NCAA, and NFL. This is the second round out of ten projected rounds. This week's special guest picker is our good friend Shawn Clynch. Let's check in with the results from last week:

Micah: 8-2
Blake: 5-5
David: 6-4

We'll keep a running tally each week of the previous week's results as well as the overall numbers. Without further ado, here are the picks for round two:

Continue reading Weekly Staff Pick ’em – Round 2


Houston Rockets (4-0) at Miami Heat (3-0)
Micah's Pick: Heat 102 – 100
Both teams are off to a great start. While the Heat suddenly find themselves in a world without King James, they seem to be adjusting rather well thus far with Bosh taking over as the #1 option.

Blake's Pick: Heat 101 – 96
So far, the Heat haven’t missed a beat in the “Post-James Era”. Adding a Luol Deng is a pretty high consolation prize. The Rockets are lethal offensively and hard to stop once they get going with Harden, Howard and co. I’ll take the home team in a toss up.

Shawn's Pick: Rockets 102  94
How about this for a an early indication of what the NBA Finals may be? This will not be the match up we will see in June, but it's an excellent early season showdown. The Beard for the Rockets will never forget Miami. It was the Heat who shut him down in the Finals a few seasons ago as a member of The Thunder. Harden will redeem himself.


Los Angeles Clippers (3-1) at Golden State Warriors (3-0)
Micah's Pick: Clippers 121 114
Two high powered offenses in the western conference. Curry and Thompson have been very impressive thus far for Golden State, but I see the Clippers edging them out here.

Blake's Pick: Warriors 107 – 100
The Warriors are set up to win for a long time with the “Splash Brothers”. As long as CP3 and Blake are healthy, the Clips match up well with anyone. Again, I see this being a toss up and I’ll go home team.

Shawn's Pick: Clippers 106  102
Intriguing matchup in the west. I'm feeling Blake and Chris Paul to slow down their Nor Cal rivals. Stephen Curry will drain his share as expected and reach his average of 25.3 ppt, but the Clippers will win.



Baylor Bears (7-1) at Oklahoma Sooners (6-2)
Micah's Pick: Sooners 38 – 31
Oklahoma is 21-2 all time vs Baylor. However, those two losses have come in the last three years. Both Baylor wins have come in Waco though and the Bears have never beaten the Sooners in Norman. Look for the Sooners to continue the streak on Saturday.

Blake's Pick: Sooners 42 – 37
OU played their best at Iowa State. Knight looked unstoppable. Baylor IS unstoppable. Petty and company will score theirs, but I think OU gets the home win and keep their high bowl hopes alive.

Shawn's Pick: Sooners 37  28
The Sooners won 21-straight vs the Bears, but have lost 2 of the past 3 against Baylor. The home field advantage will play a major role in this one. No way, Bryce Petty and the Bears leave Norman with a win. OU appears to have repaired whatever was ailing them.


Oregon Ducks (8-1) at Utah Utes (6-2)
Micah's Pick: Ducks 42 – 24
Oregon is in the drivers seat for a playoff berth. All signs point to another Ducks victory.

Blake's Pick: Ducks 44 – 31
Oregon should win this one convincingly. Utah has been really good this year, and will have a rowdy crowd ready to welcome the Ducks, but too much Mariota.

Shawn's Pick: Utes 34 – 31
Salt Lake City is not exactly known as an intimidating college football venue, but it is underrated. I'm placing the Ducks on an upset alert.


Alabama Crimson Tide (7-1) at LSU Tigers (6-2)
Micah's Pick: Crimson Tide 13 – 10
While the selection committee would probably be just fine showcasing these two SEC West teams in a playoff match-up, it will have to do for a regular season showdown. Whoever gets into the endzone twice wins.

Blake's Pick: Tigers 21 – 17
Doesn’t get much better than a showdown of the Titans in Death Valley. A 7 PM game time bodes well for LSU as Les and his crew are nearly unbeatable under the lights in Baton Rouge.. Here’s my “upset” of the week.

Shawn's Pick: Crimson Tide 24 – 20
"Calling Baton Rouge".. Garth Brooks was calling Baton Rouge for a lady friend in that song, but Nick Saban will be calling for bodyguards. The Tiger nation remembers him leaving LSU like it was yesterday. I'm not sure Saban's boys will be treated with southern hospitality, but I do believe the Crimson Tide will play well enough to escape with a win on the bayou.


Kansas State Wildcats (7-1) at TCU Horned Frogs (7-1)
Micah's Pick: Horned Frogs 42 – 28
This match-up has not only heavy conference title implications, but also national playoff implications. Whichever team wins will be primed to win the conference and potentially earn a shot to compete vs the SEC in the playoffs. Big game, lots riding on the line for both programs.

Blake's Pick: Horned Frogs 38 – 34
Here’s your Big 12 Championship game, nearly. Whoever wins this one will have the driver’s seat, so long as OU beats Baylor. Kansas St is really sound, but TCU just finds a way. (Got screwed at Baylor). At home, I think TCU comes out ahead in the end, barely.

Shawn's Pick: Horned Frogs 30 – 24
I'm torn on this one. We'll see if the Horny Frogs are legit or not against a true defense. The winner has the inside track to the Big 12 Championship with a few weeks remaining to play. Ole Cowtown doesn't exactly instill fear, but I do believe Gary Patterson shocks the world by scoring some points.


Ohio State Buckeyes (7-1) at Michigan State Spartans (7-1)
Micah's Pick: Spartans 24 – 14
While the Big 10 is clearly down this year, Michigan State is a legit program and should take down the Buckeyes with relative ease.

Blake's Pick: Spartans 30 – 21
I, for one, think Michigan State is the far superior team in this matchup. Ohio St lost at home to VT and should have gotten beat in Happy Valley at State College 2 weeks ago. Michigan State boasts a tremendous defense that I think will keep OSU in check.

Shawn's Pick: Spartans 27 – 21
Yawwwnnnn!! Big 10 football does absolutely nothing for me, but the Spartans do impress me. 


Notre Dame Fighting Irish (7-1) at Arizona State Sun Devils (7-1)
Micah's Pick: Fighting Irish 27 – 24
Notre Dame should likely be 8-0 heading into this contest, but suffered a tough defeat in Tallahassee a couple of weeks ago. Look for another close game here with the Irish squeaking one out and clamoring for a playoff spot.

Blake's Pick: Sun Devils 37 – 24
Todd Graham is a heck of an offensive mind. Brian Kelly is a heck of a preparer. This may be a great game. If so, ND wins a close one, if it’s lopsided, Arizona State is clicking. I’ll go with the home team.

Shawn's Pick: Fighting Irish 24 – 17
The Fighting Irish never shy away from a  challenging schedule. WOW!! On the road again for a national game in Tempe. Todd Graham has a solid Sun Devils team, but Notre Dame gets the win.



Miami Dolphins (5-3) at Detroit Lions (6-2)
Micah's Pick: Lions 28 – 17
While Dolphins have been on a terror of late, the Lions are finally getting healthy with the return of Megatron and Bush. Will the Dolphins defense be able to contain Megatron in his return? I'm not betting on it.

Blake's Pick: Lions 24 – 20
My beloved Miami Dolphins are playing meaningful football in November. This is a huge game for both teams. Detroit boasts the best overall defense in the NFL, but Miami has laid the wood in previous weeks. I hate to do it, but I think a healthy Megatron and the Detroit passing game is the difference.

Shawn's Pick: Lions 27 – 24
Miami is favored by  a field goal in this matchup of unpredictable quarterbacks. Stafford can light it up and he and his Lions are at home. Hmmm… I'm torn though, but Motown takes it.


Kansas City Chiefs (5-3) at Buffalo Bills (5-3)
Micah's Pick: Bills 21 – 14
When in doubt, roll with the home team. Kyle Orton to Sammy Watkins for the win.

Blake's Pick: Chiefs 23 – 21
The Bills, under the leadership of Kyle Orton have played good football. The Chiefs started slow, but are coming around as expected. A healthy Jamaal Charles is key, here. I expect a close one, with a tight finish.

Shawn's Pick: Chiefs 24 – 20
Stingy defenses go at it, but this in Buffalo where weather may be a factor. However, KC has Jamaal Charles. He is probable. But, my decisive factor is Kyle Orton at qb for Buffalo. I don't mean that in a positive way.