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Some things should be left to the professionals.
Week Four was not the most successful week in the history of The College Football Report. We backed a loser - heavily - and even the Sports Seal took it on the nose, going 2-3 in his picks. This week, we're going to lick our wounds and give ourselves a bit of a break. We will ramp back up next week. For the moment, we will take some small comfort knowing that in the world of college football, we weren't the only ones who had an off week.
For an example, let's turn to our colleagues in television. In all fairness to the suits in the booth, there are a lot of games on TV every weekend. And calling games can't be easy. The interaction between the play-by-play and color commentator can't be taken for granted, even when the pair regularly work together. Throw in a virgin color commentator, and well, we think you see where this is going.
Let's pick up ESPNU's coverage of the Kentucky-Florida game 42 minutes into the broadcast last Saturday. From the booth, Clay Matvick will be joined by first-time color guy Mark Schlereth. Florida has just taken possession at their own 20 following a 42-yard Kentucky punt. As Florida takes the field, Matvick tees up Schlereth for this gem:
Matvick: A lot of people knew that John Brantley had big shoes to fill coming into this season, replacing arguably the best player in college football history, Tim Tebow . . .
Matvick: . . . you had a chance to talk to him this week.
Schlereth: I did, I talked to Tim Tebow about John Brantley. He told me some really interesting things about John Brantley. He said, "Hey listen, it's not about replacing me. You've been here. It's your time. You're good enough. You're a great quarterback," and essentially just released John Brantley and gave him the ability to go out there and be you. You're plenty good enough. You're a great player. Go out there and show the world.
[0:58 remaining in the first quarter, 1st and 10 at FLA 20, John Brantley pass complete to Andre Debose for 8 yards to the Fla 28.]
Matvick: . . . that's the fourth catch for Andre Debose. And I think there are a lot of people around college football that don't envy (Brantley).
Schlereth: Yeah, certainly not. I mean, it's tough to replace an icon. And I played in Denver with John Elway and to replace the shoes of John Elway, for a lot of quarterbacks, that's a tough thing to hear that comparison.
And John Brantley is coming into this situation trying to replace an icon in Tim Tebow. But as I said, Tim Tebow said, "This is your time, just go out there, have fun, enjoy it and make the most of this opportunity because you're a great football player."
And I love the way Tim Tebow and John Brantley talk to one another, I love the relationship that they have with one another, and I love the encouragement given by Tim Tebow to take the reins, John Brantley, because this is your offense.
To recap, that's five John Brantleys, six Tim Tebows, and two John Elways. Some or all of which may or may not have been talking about or to one another and/or Mark Schlereth. Mark, you can replace our shoes any time.
We will keep it brief this week as we try to dig back out of the hole. We learned our lesson last week: greed is only good if you pick the right side. So it's with some trepidation that we offer the following picks from the slate on Saturday:
#2 Ohio State (-17) @ Illinois, 11:00AM
#11 Wisconsin @ #24 Michigan State (+2), 2:30PM
Tennessee @ #12 Louisiana State (-17.5), 2:30PM
#25 Nevada (-20.5) @ UNLV, 9:00PM
And the Sports Seal likes these picks, and had a little gleam in his eye that leads us to believe a parlay might be in the works as well:
BYU @ Utah State (+4.5), Friday, 7:00PM
Washington State @ UCLA (-27), Saturday, 2:30PM
SMU (-12.5) @ Rice, Saturday, 6:00PM
That's it - keep the faith, true believers. We will talk to you next week. Just remember our rule: If the first two of your three-game parlay picks come in, hedge that third game.
Mike "Dr. Dude" Luce brings you The College Football Report in this space twice a week, sometimes once, sometimes on Tuesdays, sometimes Thursdays, sometimes Fridays, sometimes Saturdays, but he always brings it in time to make any important phone calls you may feel compelled to make. Hey, it's not our business what you do with our information. He welcome your comments.