Before I get into the Best Bets for this weekend, a public service announcement for those of you traveling to Singapore any time soon.
They still cane people there.
Just ask former Florida State tight end Kamari Charlton. He is over in Singapore as you read this helping his wife receive medical attention for pregnancy complications. There's only one problem -- he's on day 169 of a 90-day visa, and unfortunately for Charlton, the punishment for this transgression includes three lashes with a Singapore cane across his naked hind quarters.
So if you're keeping score at home, here in the States, Charlton has been arrested for/accused of felony rape, simple assault, and battery. The worst punishment he ever ended up receiving for those arrests was community service. So he's about to get punished roughly a thousand times worse for a stupid, clerical oversight on his part.
The moral of the story -- don't mess with Texas, but REALLY don't mess with Singapore!
PSA complete. Onto the Weekend's Best Bets...
PACKERS -2.5 over Vikings
Deanna Favre went on Good Morning America and announced to the world that faith is what is sustaining her through this tough time. I'm not sure if she meant "faith" as in a noun or "Faith" as in a person, but I'll let Travis Rodgers (1560 The Game, 1-3 weekdays) have the last word on this one:
Steelers -3 over DOLPHINS
I suppose in the Week of the Concussion, we need to have one Best Bet that has a concussion slant to it. Channing Crowder is a linebacker for the Miami Dolphins, and not a particularly smart one. If you remember, it was Crowder who one time asked (legitimately, not rhetorically) what language people spoke in England. So, yeah. Not. A. Smart. Man.
Crowder's response to the concussion furor this week?
"If I get a chance to knock somebody out, I'm going to knock them out and take what they give me," Crowder said Wednesday. "They give me a helmet, I'm going to use it."
In terms of calling attention to yourself, this is the equivalent of a bank robber tweeting "Bout to go rob the B of A on Westheimer! Check it!" and putting up a uStream link so people can watch. The honesty is appreciated, Channing...by everyone except your coaches and teammates.
(Seriously, it's like the concussions sustained this Sunday in the NFL opened the floodgates for the topic to be debated/addressed, like Rachel Uchitel opening the floodgates for the light to finally be shined on all of Tiger Woods' pancake-house skanks. All of a sudden, Major League Baseball is looking at a concussion-only disabled list, ESPN's Mark Schlereth did everything but drive up to Roger Goodell's office and blast him in the face...hell, Gator followers even tried to pin Chris Rainey's death-threat texts on a possible concussion.)
FALCONS -3.5 over Bengals
Underrated subplot -- Cincinnati defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer's comments about Bobby Petrino, whom Zimmer worked for in Atlanta:
"He is a coward. Put that in quotes. He's a gutless bastard. Quote that. I don't give a s--. He came in and said he resigned, he would talk to us all at a later date, walked out of the office and no one has ever talked to him since. Not that anybody wanted to. ... He ruined a bunch of people's lives, a bunch of people's families, kids, because he didn't have enough nuts to stay there and finish the job. That's the truth."
Mike Zimmer is my new favorite coach. I'm surprised it's taken someone from his old staff this long to speak out on the scumbaggery that is Bobby Petrino. To refresh, Petrino let his Falcon players know that he was leaving the team with a note in each of their lockers. That's one step above the Falcons finding out on Facebook that "Bobby Petrino is now in a relationship with Arkansas."
Notre Dame -7 over Navy (at the Meadowlands)
One of the most discouraging trends in college football the last decade or so has been the evolution of the BCS system discouraging schools from embracing a "take on all comers" mentality. (Quick plug: Dan Wetzel talks about this and many other stomach-turning revelations in his recently released book Death to the BCS. Pick it up. Great read.) Notre Dame, once the poster school for "anytime, anywhere" had even dialed back their scheduling the last few years, but with the 2012 slate, that appears to have changed:
Sept. 1: Navy (Dublin, Ireland)
Sept. 8: PURDUE
Sept. 15: at Michigan State
Sept. 22: MICHIGAN
Sept. 29: Open
Oct. 6: MIAMI (Soldier Field, Chicago)
Oct. 13: STANFORD
Oct. 20: BYU
Oct. 27: at Oklahoma
Nov. 3: PITTSBURGH
Nov. 10: at Boston College
Nov. 17: WAKE FOREST
Nov. 24: at USC
How would you like to be Brian Kelly in a recruit's living room telling him that his freshman year, if he makes the travel squad, he'll be going to Dublin, Chicago, an on-campus visit to Oklahoma, Boston, and Los Angeles in the same season? Hell, with the Dublin trip being at the beginning of the year, the Chicago trip coming off a bye week (and allowing them to leave early for the trip), and the USC trip being over Thanksgiving, assuming Notre Dame goes to a bowl game in 2012, that's like four bowl or quasi-bowl trips in one season. Pretty cool.
TEXAS -20.5 over Iowa State
You read it here (maybe first, maybe not, but you did read it here) -- Texas is going 10-2 and getting a BCS at-large bid. There. I said it. Happy, Longhorn Fan?
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Michigan State -5 over NORTHWESTERN
Every Wednesday, my co-host John Harris and I go through the lines on our radio show (which you can stream, right here at www.1560thegame.com). Basically, John Harris doesn't look at the lines, so for each game I ask him what he thinks the line should be. Disclaimer here that Harris studies more college football than the rest of the hosts in the city combined, so if the line he estimates is significantly different than the Vegas line, then that's a sign to fire on that game (trusting Harris' instincts). Well, Harris had this one as Michigan State by almost two touchdowns. He thinks -5 for the Spartans is a gift from the gods. So I'm passing that gift on to all of you.
And if it doesn't pay off, then please accept this consolation prize -- a link to a slew of really uncomfortable Luke Perry photos...which frankly may even be better than winning a bet on Michigan State.
Listen to Sean Pendergast on 1560 The Game from 3-7 p.m. weekdays on the "Sean & John Show" and follow him on Twitter at http://twitter.com/SeanCablinasian.