Sunday, September 25, 2011
Zultan's Fearless Big Ten Plus Football Predictions: Week Nine
Zultan abandoned his natural inscrutable psychic forces and went with science last weekend, to his detriment.
The bumps on his head should have led the all-seeing phrenologist to realize that the Huskers were shucked unable to stand against the full force of a Cyclone.
It should have revealed that a Horned Frog was more resilient against first-down evolution than a Cougar. Finally, Zultan should have sensed that the Nittany Lion was in command against the lowly Wolverine.
Once again the mighty Zultan was 7-for-10, or 70 percent—on the season, the magnificent one stands at 54-of-71, or 76 percent.
Zultan dismisses silly science for the board this week. It is the season of sunset for foolish football fanatics...
Last week, 13 rank amateurs conspired to make Zultan look bad by outguessing him. Tireless Zultan does all the work and these interlopers sap his well-earned glory. This week Zultan lives to make them all rue the day they dared to disagree with the mighty one.
Care to test your puny predicting powers against Zultan—Big Ten Seer for the Ages? Only the great one has mastered the movements of the football forecasting fool-proof Ouija board...beware of the Zultan...
(1) Indiana at No. 4 Iowa
Indiana got off to a whale of a start against Northwestern and led by as many as 25 points when they began to flounder. When the rudder finally came off the ship—the hapless Hoosiers sank in the last second, 29-28, to the Wildcats.
Now this weekend as punishment for letting go a golden opportunity, the Indiana team must travel to Iowa City to play the red hot Hawkeyes who are enjoying a dented-but-never-broken season. Expect Iowa to continue down their schedule with an undefeated view by defeating the Hoosiers at home in front of deliriously happy fans.
(2) Purdue at Wisconsin
This game, Zultan fears, is not as easy as it looks on paper. The Purdue Boilermakers have won their last two games just as the Wisconsin Badgers have lost their last two.
Yes, the level of competition was slightly different with Purdue defeating Ohio State at home and then Illinois on the road as Wisconsin lost to Ohio State on the road and then Iowa at home on back to back weekends. You think that any team that has defeated Ohio State should be discounted? Probably not.
But Zultan senses that the Badgers will be ready for Purdue at Camp Randall. The Wisconsin team had a week off to study and prepare. They will defeat the Boilers in Madison and get back on the winning path.
(3) New Mexico State at No. 17 Ohio State
New Mexico State is a stranger to the Big Ten. To date they are 3-5, 1-3 in the WAC Conference. The Aggies are traveling far outside their comfort zone to come calling on the inhospitable Buckeyes.
The weather alone will stop them dead in their tracks. Expect the Buckeyes to send their WAC guests home without a victory. Zultan needs no crystal ball to predict this one.
(4) Michigan at Illinois
The question is: What will be the attitude of the Michigan squad after the smackdown they received at the hands of the Penn State Nittany Lions, 35-10? As the Wolverines travel to Champaign and Memorial Stadium to face the Illinois squad, they need to be ready to meet a team whose back is to the wall.
The Illini are winless in the Big Ten and upsetting the favored Wolverines could salvage their season. Will they do it? Zultan says no. The Michigan Wolverines will do their part to continue this nightmare season for the Illinois squad.
(5) No. 12 Penn State at Northwestern
Mean Joe Paterno continues his dominating ways. Last week he made Rich Rodriquez and the Michigan team cry. This week the mighty Nittany Lions will tree the Wildcats in Evanston. Northwestern made a huge comeback to upend the Indiana Hoosiers last week.
But they had better not fall behind early to Penn State or the Nittany Lions will make them pay big. Mean Joe has willed his team into contention. They await Ohio State but will not overlook Northwestern. Penn State wins this one.
(6) Michigan State at Minnesota
After that thrilling game last weekend against Iowa in which Michigan State only blinked once on the last play losing 15-13, the Spartans must hit the road this week, traveling to Minnesota. Minnesota is reeling after back to back losses to Penn State and Ohio State, both on the road.
The question is, who will be more resilient? If Minnesota had trouble moving the ball against superior defenses, then their task will not get easier against the Michigan State squad. Even at home, Zultan feels the Spartans will bounce back from their near miss and defeat the swooning Badgers. It is that time of year you know when Gophers start hibernating.
(7) No. 3 Texas at No. 14 Oklahoma State
Can anybody stop Texas? The Longhorns are fixed on the finish line and they are not going to let anybody get in their way—especially after what happened to them last year. Their biggest rival in the Big 12 is Oklahoma State.
The Longhorns must play in Boone Pickens Stadium in a night contest under the lights with a hostile crowd as background in Stillwater. Texas is undefeated 7-0 and 4-0 in conference play. Oklahoma State is 6-1 and 3-0 in conference play. Zultan’s board says take the Longhorns and run. Texas wins a tough one on the road.
(8) No. 5 USC at No. 10 Oregon
When Zultan sits at the board on this contest, the pointer spins. Both teams are ranked in the nation’s top 10 and both sport 6-1 seasons. The winner of this game has the inside track for the Pac-10 conference championship and perhaps a BCS bowl game.
The Ducks have not lost since their opening game against Boise State. USC was upset by Washington, owning one loss in the conference. Odds-makers are giving the slight edge to the Trojans. But Zultan will take the home team with the big heart. Oregon wins this one at home and moves up in the BCS.
(9) Kansas State at Oklahoma
Both teams have ambitions to be in postseason play. Oklahoma (4-3, 2-1) lost any chance at a national championship after losing at the Red River shootout. Kansas State (5-3, 3-1) is in the driver’s seat to win the Big 12 North at this point in the season.
That only gets them the glory of playing in the Big 12 Championship game in December probably against Texas. The Big 12 North pales in contrast to their southern rivals. Expect the Oklahoma Sooners to win this one at home. Zultan says you can bet the farm on this pick.
(10) No. 11 Georgia Tech at Vanderbilt
Zultan favors Georgia Tech to win this contest. The Yellow Jackets stand 7-1 and are ranked No. 11 in the BCS poll. Their ambition is to win the ACC Conference title. Vanderbilt of the SEC is 2-6 on the season.
They are a well-coached team with nothing to lose and everything to win by knocking off the Yellow Jackets. So will Vandy manage an upset against Georgia Tech? No. Zultan senses nothing extraordinary as the board zeros in on the stinging Jackets.
Last week, 13 lucky football fans outguessed Zultan (7 for 10). Picking 9 for 10: Jake Humphrey—Iowa City, IA; Scott Allen—Destin, FL; David Eck—Cedar Falls. 8 for 10: Daniel Repp—Albuquerque, NM; Jason Brown—Hampshire, IL; Matt DeSmidt—Fort Collins, CO; Chris Miller—Brownwood, TX; Monte Klinkenborg—Placerville, CA; David Colvig—Des Moines, IA; Eric Ludwig—Des Moines, IA; Dale Collins—Landon, SC; Alex Goedken—Kansas City, KS; James Krejci—Stevensville, MI.
Soon Zultan will list only those whose picks are worse than his own! This list is far too long. This week seems deceptively easy, does it not, oh greedy ones? Your confidence has outstripped your sensibility.
You feel superior to the mighty seer and feel the need to “Top Zultan.”
Give it your best shot, if you dare.
Published by JA Allen at Bleacher Reports and at Sports Then & Now.