For this week's random person with newfound wealth via frivolous lawsuit or dumb luck, we go to northern China and a fellow by the name of Jian Feng. Until recently, Feng was married to the love of his life, an unnamed (in the article, at least) beauty who had also recently given birth to their daughter.
Only one problem -- Feng found their baby to be hideous. How hideous? Hideous enough to invoke paternity testing to see if the baby is actually his (It is.). Hideous enough for Feng to force his wife to admit she had over $100,000 worth of plastic surgery done before they met. Yes, before they met, married and conceived, Feng's wife was U-G-L-Y.
Unfortunately, plastic surgery is a "surface only" deal and Feng's wife's DNA remained in its unaltered, homely state and was passed onto their young daughter. So Feng claimed he married his wife under false pretense, that what he thought was a natural beauty was really nothing more than a "fixer upper."
Setting a legal precedent that may change the way single men use match.com (Is there a search filter for "Cosmetic Surgery: YES"?), Feng divorced, sued, and actually won $120,000 in damages from his ex-wife!
So, as always, I'm here to help Feng make that money grow and grow quickly with some of this weekend's best football bets. Let's go to the games!
Texas/KANSAS OVER 60 1/2 The weekly drama in Austin the last few days has centered around Mack Brown's very public complaints about the Longhorn Network, its intrusiveness, and the amount of time he is forced to spend helping generate content (six hours a week, which in his defense, is somewhat ridiculous). Oddly enough, no complaints from Mack on the intrusiveness of the exorbitant checks the school receives from ESPN for the network. Ultimately, Mack's lamenting the school's broadcast arm was done to distract all of us from the real issue -- Texas' porous defense, ranked 106th in the nation in points allowed per game. Good try, Mack!
Meanwhile, Charlie Weis' Kansas Jayhawks still haven't been able to break out that "last second field goal celebration" they've been working on so diligently in practice, and now it appears Weis has benched fifth year senior quarterback Dayne Crist, who has to be thrilled with his choice to follow Weis from Notre Dame to Kansas. Thrilled. Kansas' 95th ranked defense isn't much better than Texas', and the Jayhawks have at least had a pulse at home. I don't have the stomach to take Kansas and the points, I'll just go the safe route and bet that very little defense will be played.
Ohio State -1 over PENN STATE This one is the Probation Bowl, as both of these teams are ineligible for the postseason, and therefore, ineligible to win their division in the Big Ten. To the credit of both coaches, they've had their teams playing hard all season long, treating every game like it's a bowl game. In fact, I'd put Penn State head coach Bill O'Brien on my Bear Bryant Award ballot right now with how he's handled everything swirling around his team all year in the wake of the Jerry Sandusky scandal. (I'd do the same with Urban Meyer, except he doesn't ever want to come here for the Bryant Award banquet, so screw him.) This line moved around through the "zero" all week long before finally settling on Ohio State -1 with the news that quarterback Braxton Miller will play. Good enough for me!
Notre Dame +10 1/2 over OKLAHOMA This is the game of the week, and when it all plays out, could wind up being one of the most important games of the year, as it is a de facto elimination game for the BCS national title. If Notre Dame wins, then they're officially "back" (whatever that means), the BCS rankings probably have another shake up, and Oklahoma is left squarely on the bubble of not playing in a BCS bowl at all. If Oklahoma wins, they all of a sudden become (along with LSU) a "hot" one loss team who can get back in the BCS title race with some help. It's only Notre Dame's second true road game of the season (They've played two "neutral site" games.) which is probably a big reason why the spread is as big as it is. In the end this game will come down to turnovers -- Notre Dame forces them, and generally Landry jones is pretty generous in yielding them. If the Irish can win the turnover battle by two or more, they can win this game. Either way, I think ten points is too many. I think it will be close, and I think Notre Dame's experience in close games this season (four games decided by seven or less) gives them a great chance to pull off the upset.
PACKERS -16 over Jaguars How bad is Jags quarterback Blaine Gabbert? Well, the line on this game opened at 12.5 on Monday before we knew the medical outlook for Gabbert, who was knocked out of last Sunday's loss to the Raiders with a shoulder injury. Then comes news on Wednesday that Gabbert has been practicing and expects to play on Sunday. And the line moved from 12.5 to 16. How do you know you're a shitty quarterback? When news that you will start makes your team a bigger underdog...that's a pretty good indicator.
Panthers/BEARS UNDER 43 As the Panthers continue their downward spiral, Cam Newton's post game press conferences have become some of the most fascinating television content of the football weekend. On the heels of another close loss this past Sunday, how about this massive knife plunging into his offensive coordinator's back:
I can't stress enough, these press conferences are AWESOME. It's like watching a nine year old squirm while trying to explain straight D's to his parents. Whatever the case, Newton doesn't look remotely close to a guy who can pull his team out of this nosedive. The Bears defense are exactly what the doctor would NOT order for the Panthers. We'll play the under here.
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Saints/BRONCOS OVER 55 1/2 In all six Saints games this season, the lowest point output by the Saints or their opponents has been 24 points (once by the Saints, once by the Chargers). Think about that -- EVERY Saints game has gone over a 50 point total this season. Why would it stop this Sunday? With Peyton Manning hitting his stride, and the Saints desperate for a win, there will be some fireworks in Denver on Sunday night.
Listen to Sean Pendergast on 1560 The Game from 6 a.m. to 11 a.m. weekdays, and watch the simulcast on Comcast 129 from 6 a.m. to 8 a.m. Also, follow him on Twitter at http://twitter.com/SeanCablinasian.