Mostly agree with your rankings; with the optimism bias from being a cardinals fan personally, I'd argue you could make a 1 star increase at each position, but their current rankings are also fair. I very much disagree with the 1 star ranking at special teams however, as we have a pro bowl gunner in Justin Bethel being joined by some high upside athletes in the kick coverage team and kick return game. Probably the best coverage unit in the game, which coupled with a punter who is below average (don't think he's as bad as stats show- his hangtime is rediculous, and it seems the staff went with him for this reason. I'd choose a distance leg with our coverage team, butI digress). In short, I'd say 3 stars is fair. A perfectly average special teams unit, whose only limitation really seems to be Drew Butler's distance and the uncertainty of a new long snapper (but both seem pretty reliable this far)
College Football Picks (Week 1, 2009): 3-2 (+$350) College Football Picks (Week 2, 2009): 2-3 (-$710)
College Football Picks (2009 Season): 5-5 (-$360) College Football Picks (2008 Season): 49-38 (+$3,020)
By the way, the third-annual Walter/Joker Annual Challenge is on, as I'll be competing with the Joker's College Picks. We each pick five games and see who does the best each week.
Colorado (0-1) at Toledo (0-1) Line: Colorado by 4. Friday, 9:00 ET
This almost fits one of my systems to a tee. Toledo is a weeknight live home underdog under the lights on national TV (try saying that 10 times fast.) About 80 percent of the money is on Colorado. The only thing that hasn't happened is line movement in Toledo's favor.
This spread opened at -3.5. It's -4 in some places, but Pinnacle Sports, the sharpest sportsbook on the Web, still has it at -3.5, which means that they want to entice bettors to take the road favorite.
Marshall (1-0) at Virginia Tech (0-1) Line: Marshall by 19.5. Saturday, 12:00 ET
Virginia Tech's national championship hopes came crumbling down Saturday when Alabama beat them on a neutral field.
The Hokies have to be on emotional low this week. What do they care about this game? They can still win the ACC, but this contest has no bearing on that.
There is precedent for a Virginia Tech failed cover. Last year, the Hokies battled two weak non-conference opponents, Western Kentucky and Furman. They beat those schools, 27-13 and 24-7, respectively. Both results feature margins less than 19.5 points.
Virginia Tech doesn't have the offense to be favored by this much. I'll take Marshall in a covered loss.
Prediction: Virginia Tech 23, Marshall 10 Marshall +19.5 (4 Units) -- Incorrect; -$440 Virginia Tech 52, Marshall 10
Purdue (1-0) at Oregon (0-1) Line: Oregon by 12. Saturday, 3:30 ET
Like Virginia Tech, Oregon had its national championship aspirations torn to shreds last weekend. On top of that, the Ducks have this whole LaGarrette Blount distraction to deal with.
I'll be shocked if we get the Ducks' best effort here. They really have nothing to play for. They can still win the Pac 10, but beating Purdue will accomplish nothing.
Purdue can put up points, so I like them to cover the number.
Louisiana Tech (0-1) at Navy (0-1) Line: Navy by 7.5. Saturday, 3:30 ET
Everyone saw Navy's great effort at Ohio State last weekend, which would explain why close to 90 percent of the money in Vegas is backing them.
However, I see things differently. Navy put everything it had into that contest. Had they actually called a smart play on the 2-point conversion, they would have gone to overtime and perhaps would have came away with a victory.
Now, Navy has to get up as a touchdown favorite over an inferior Lousiana Tech squad? I have all the respect in the world for the Naval Academy, but we're not going to get the players' best effort here because they are on an emotional low.
The Vegas trends back me up. Despite the fact that the public is pounding Navy, the line has moved from -7.5 to -7 in some places (including Pinnacle Sports).
Prediction: Louisiana Tech 20, Navy 17 Louisiana Tech +7.5 (5 Units) -- Incorrect; -$550 Navy 32, Louisiana Tech 14
USC (1-0) at Ohio State (1-0) Line: USC by 6.5. Saturday, 8:00 ET
The sharpest college football experts are torn on this game. USC is the better team, yet true freshman Matt Barkley is making his first road start at a venue which happens to be one of the most daunting in college football.
I'm not torn. Yes, Barkley is a true freshman, but USC has the better talent at the skill positions. They have the better offensive line. They have the better defense. And they have the better athletes.
I can't remember the last time the Big Ten has prevailed over the Pac 10 when there has been a matchup between two perceived even squads. The Pac 10 wins every time because the Big Ten is vastly inferior - and I'm saying this as a Big Ten fan.
Despite the true freshman quarterback, USC wins big over an overrated Big Ten team. Again.
Prediction: USC 27, Ohio State 10 USC -6.5 (2 Units) -- Incorrect; -$220 USC 18, Ohio State 15