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Corn Nation Loses Your Money: Frozen Illini Edition

In response to staff complaints, this week’s predictions are Iowa-free.

NFC Conference Championship - New Orleans Saints vs Chicago Bears - January 21, 2007
Lovie needs a beard to help keep him warm.
Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images

Mike: For those of you who thought that ‘Bama/LSU was going to be a good game last week, I have only one thing to say.

29-0. There’s a reason why I pick games with 10 point or less point spreads. “I fart in your general direction.”

Uglydog56: These predictions are getting tougher to be original in. But like remembering complaining about winter when you're thinking about complaining about the summer heat, I just remember I could be writing another county countdown series, and it gets easier.

Nate M: 26-22. I need a 5-0 week. I think maybe that might be this week.

Jill: I mostly thought Bama-LSU was more fun to write about than Minny-Illinois. Both turned out to be horrible, terrrible, no-good, very bad games. If all of that gets us Monty Python clips, I’m okay with it. 31-15. Now that Mike has avoided an Iowa game, what am I going to complain about? This lineup looks kind of fun.

Patrick G.: Hello

Ohio State (-3.5) at Michigan State

Uglydog56: This is a weird one. Sparty has been all over the map. Ohio State has been battling its own tendencies. I forecast a surprisingly unwatchable game with lots of classless jokes about domestic violence and sexual assault. I’m actually picking Sparty in this one.

Nate M: Michigan State’s strength is it’s rushing defense. Ohio State’s weakness is it’s rushing attack. So I don’t think Ohio State is going to be running the ball at all against Michigan State. However, Ohio State can sling the ball and that’s what it’ll do. I think Ohio State will win but it’ll be like 24-17.

Jill: The Buckeyes got booed by their own crowd at halftime last weekend. Fortunately, they aren’t at the Shoe this weekend. The Spartans are a difficult team to read. I think the Ohio State offense should be able to put up enough points for the win. Bucks by 4

Patrick G.: “I’m not so mean. I wouldn’t ever go out to hurt anybody deliberately - unless it was, you know, important, like a league game or something.” - Dick Butkus

Ohio State University 32 Michigan State University 17

Mike: Michigan State has been up and down all season...but they’ve been up the last two weeks. This wouldn’t be the ideal week to be down, but they are due. And Ohio State is probably due to silence their critics. Bucknuts 38, Sparty 23

Wisconsin (+9) at Penn State


Nate M: Well I think it is clear Uglydog56 is talking about Wisconsin’s coach here. Yep. I think that is it. Penn State is going to get their face smashed by Jonathan Taylor. Wisconsin by double digits.

Jill: Both teams may have their starting quarterbacks. Both teams might have the backups playing some of all of the game. Penn State’s offense is a mess but Wiscy’s defense isn’t as airtight as we’ve gotten used to. The quarterback uncertainty and weather for this one all but guarantees that the better rushing team will win. If true, give me the Badgers by 3.

Patrick G.: “If properly dried and trimmed, New York-style pizza could be used to make a box for Chicago-style pizza.” - Nick Offerman

Pennsylvania State University 17 University of Wisconsin 12

Mike: Mmmmm... deep dish Chicago-style pizza delivered in New York-style cardboard. Oh wait, we’re talking football. And frankly, “the wrong team is favored” as I’ve been unimpressed by Penn State all season. (Beat Appalachian State in overtime, trailed Illinois in the second half, etc.) Badgers 24, Nitts 20

Washington State (-4.5) at Colorado

Uglydog56: Mike Leach pitches another perfect game with zero yards rushing. He waxes rhapsodic about the majesty of the buffalo mascot. He also share a recipe in which buffalo meat is a key ingredient. That’s just at the halftime interview. I can’t imagine what the postgame press conference will entail. I can’t wait for a Northwestern-Wazzu Rose Bowl!

Nate M: Mike Leach is a national treasure. National Treasurers, like the Declaration of Independence, can only be stolen by Nicolas Cage. Nicolas Cage was in Ghost Rider. Ghost Rider rode a motorcycle. Motorcycles can be found in Colorado. It all makes sense now. Colorado loses.

Patrick G.: “The professional player is smarter than a college man. He uses his noodle. He knows what to do and when to do it. He rarely goes up in the air as is the case with most of our college players when they get in a tight place.” - Red Grange

Washington State University 98 University of Colorado 23

Jill: Without Shenault, the Buffs are not the same team that escaped from Lincoln early this season with a W. The Mike Leach press conference alone makes this one worth watching. #MikeLeachForPresident Wazzu by a touchdown.

Mike: Laviska Shenault says he’s playing this week. I’m not betting against that guy; all he does is make plays and win. Buffies 38, Cougs 36

Texas (-2) at Texas Tech

Uglydog56: This game will be light on defense and heavy on people wearing an unflattering shade of orange. With yellow base skin tone, earth tones never work for me, as well as many many unfortunate Texas fans. School colors being a complimentary color can actually be a factor in rooting interests for some people. Even with their much more flattering scarlet and black, it will be difficult for Texas Tech to pull this one out. I sure hope so, though. Whorns unfortunately do the thing.

Nate M: Texas Tech wins. Great analysis Nate, great analysis. Stop talking in the 3rd person. Fine.

Patrick G.: “Many people flounder about in life because they do not have a purpose, an objective toward which to work.” - George Halas

Texas Tech University 28 University of Texas 23

Jill: Tech may not have their quarterback and they have a crappy pass defense. Tejas has been on a bit of a roll lately. It pains me to type it, but I’ll take the Longhorns by a field goal.

Mike: The Bovines have been on a roll. Orange Cows 41, Kliffbars 30

Illinois (+17) at Nebraska

Uglydog56: This game will go the way everyone hopes it will. One of the three of Morgan, Speilman, or Ozigbo hit 1000 yards in this game. Illinois DT Calvin Avery asks for his scholarship release to go to Nebraska at halftime. AJ Bush cries real tears of pain and frustration because he left. Lovie Smith shaves his beard and fashions it into a hairshirt to wear as penance for the Illini performance. Delusional Husker fans overreact and predict a national championship next season.

Nate M: If Nebraska can stop the Illinois run then this game will be over by halftime. I think it can happen. Last week it “stopped” the Ohio State passing game. Just get a win. They better not be looking forward to Michigan State.

Patrick G.: “I have no clue what is going on right now, go Packers.” - May or may not have been Ron Zook

University of Nebraska 42 University of Illinois 17

Jill: Nebraska is commemorating the 100th anniversary of Armistice Day this weekend. If this game turns into trench warfare, ala WWI, the Illini have a puncher’s chance. Alas, I think the newly rejuvinated Blackshirts do enough to clog up the run game forcing Illinois to the air more than they’d like. JoJo Domann gets an INT. 2AM and the offense continue to rack up yards but not as many points as Husker fans hope. Special teams continues to do stupid things. Lovie Smith’s beard gets a standing ovation as the Illini exit the stadium. Huskers by 17

Mike: Nebraska is going to move the ball at will, but AJ Bush and Reggie Corbin are going to make the Huskers sweat a bit. Huskers 59, Illini 35