Do you have any college football betting questions? Want to know the best value bets or teams to avoid? Over-under win totals, over-under points, or futures? Shoot us a tweet or leave the question in the comments and in the next week or two we will run a mailbag post on gambling questions to get ready for the season.
Big House BBQ Visitor List - Tremendous runs down the visitors for this summer's BBQ at the Big House and there should be a large amount of both committed and uncommitted talent on hand for one of the bigger recruiting events of the summer.
Nick Saban's keys on stopping Michigan's Denard Robinson - Nick Saban talks in bland soundbytes about how to stop Denard Robinson. Credit to the author of the article for the zinger at the end of the first section.
Michigan football over-under: Will the Wolverines post a winning record vs. Ohio State, Michigan State, Notre Dame? - You should have been following the Over-Under series at AnnArbor.com all this time, but if you haven't there is still time to go back. Read today's final edition and click through the last two weeks of coverage.
For my money, I'm going with the under on this. Only one of these games is a home game, and that is against the toughest team on the Big Ten schedule, Michigan State. Notre Dame just has to catch a break sooner or later, and Ohio State may not get a bowl game, but they get a season ender against Michigan that might as well be for the BCS title.
But I'm a pessimist.
With that said, if guys like Novak and Douglass have taught us anything, the 4-year college player is the most rewarding one to watch as a fan. They come in and aren't the most naturally talented or athletic, but they work hard and improve in subtle ways that a fan can spot and feel legitimately good about. Neither Novak nor Douglass were doing much at all on the bounce during their first three seasons in Ann Arbor. But, lo and behold, both improved their ball handling skills and flashed the ability to contribute offensively in ways other than the spot up three. Novak developed a little drive into a jump stop for a mid-range jumper, and Douglass showed a sneaky--and if we're using sports cliches here, "crafty"--ability to get to the rack and find ways to finish.
Certainly though, Penn State's football culture didn't devolve on its own. While the NCAA would like to hand out punishment and act like the grownup in the room for once, they and their member institutions are responsible for this current athletic culture. Likewise, the sports media will spend the next several days sanctimoniously nodding their heads in approval of the NCAA's sanctions while they (and ever more extreme fan bases) are just as responsible in creating, exploiting, and enabling the "win at all costs" football culture that Emmert denounced yesterday.
Awful Announcing takes the media and the NCAA to task for both's role in building the same "culture" that the Penn State sanctions were aimed at blowing up.
In doing so, Emmert opened up the NCAA to—very fair—criticism about the sheer hypocrisy of the above statement, and that criticism extends to the penalties themselves**. Slamming "hero worship" when the NCAA extravagantly profits from—to take one small example—NCAA Football video games that advertise "a deeper game for a deeper devotion," is remarkably tone-deaf. The NCAA doesn't make their money from "academic values", but from fanatics (it's called March Madness, for chrissakes) who sanctify figures like JoePa and Coach K and Woody and Bo and the athletes upon whose backs this empire is built. The NCAA asking us to suddenly find perspective is like TMZ chastising their readers for caring too much about the lives of people they don't actually know; it's a nice sentiment coming from precisely the wrong source.
What I find more remarkable, however, is that the NCAA had the proper basis to levy these sanctions sitting right in front of them, and instead they took the hypocrisy route. It's simple: Penn State gained a massive, long-term competitive advantage by keeping Sandusky's heinous crimes quiet.
Ace of mgoblog takes off the recruiting hat and puts on the editorial hat for this one and, as we all know he is capable of, knocks it out of the park. This is one of the best things I've read in reaction to the Penn State sanctions.