So, nobody wants Tom Herman anymore? Is that the deal?
The Tom Herman-to-Texas and Tom Herman-to-LSU and Tom Herman-to-Southern Cal has come to a screeching halt with Houston losing twice this year, first to Navy and then last week to SMU.
Here’s the thing, though, if any of those schools really wanted Herman coming into the season, they should still want him. Herman, who was a major figure in South Carolina’s search for a coach this past offseason, has done a wonderful job with the Cougars.
If there’s an athletics director who wanted Herman before the two losses, but doesn’t want him now, that’s proof positive that that athletics director knows nothing more than his team’s fan base about hiring football coaches.
Athletics directors should have reasons for hiring coaches beyond, “He’s the hot name,” but too often it seems they don’t. Herman looks like the latest example of this.
The reason I bring this up is Texas is about to lose its fifth game of the season. This time to Baylor, which is a 3.5-point favorite in Austin, Texas.
Against the spread: Baylor
Louisville (minus-32.5) at Virginia
Every coach in the country who has a chance of making the College Football Playoff this year is sending a thank you note to Clemson coach Dabo Swinney for knocking off the Cardinals earlier this year. Nobody wants to play Louisville with the season on the line.
Clemson (minus-4.5) at Florida State
The most impressive thing about Seminoles freshman quarterback Deondre Francois, and it’s a healthy list, is his toughness. The Tigers have been playing with fire this year, and can afford to lose this game and still win the ACC.
Straight: Florida State
ATS: Florida State
West Virginia (minus-3.5) at Oklahoma State
If West Virginia can finish off the Cowboys, Texas, Oklahoma and Baylor, they could be in the final four. It won’t, though. The Mountaineers are undefeated, but don’t have a great win yet. This would be a good one, and a good start for a tough second half.
Straight: West Virginia
Washington State (minus-14) at Oregon State
If you can stay up late enough to watch Washington State, do it because they’re a fun team. If you can’t, at least catch the replays of coach Mike Leach’s press conferences. They’re hilarious.
Straight: Washington State
ATS: Washington State
Nebraska at Wisconsin (minus-9)
I’m thiiiiiis close to saying the Big Ten is a better league than the SEC this year. This game barely misses being a top-10 matchup since Wisconsin is ranked No. 11. Nebraska is undefeated, but hasn’t seen a team as good as Wisconsin yet.
Georgia vs. Florida (minus-7.5)
First-year coach Kirby Smart came to Athens talking about bringing Georgia back, then he took a team that won 10 games last year and lost to Vanderbilt. All will be forgiven if he can beat the Gators, but he probably won’t.
Michigan (minus-24.5) at Michigan State
If I had told you two years ago that the Wolverines would be a 24.5-point favorite in this game AT Michigan State, you’d have thought I was drunk, but here we are.
ATS: Michigan State
Auburn (minus-4.5) vs. Ole Miss
I still think the four-loss Rebels are a pretty good football team. Not sure what I’m going to think about the five-loss Rebels.
ATS: Ole Miss
Kentucky at Missouri (minus-5.5)
Kentucky is in sole possession of second place in the SEC East. Really.
Last week: 7-3 straight, don’t ask against the spread (fine, it was 2-7-1)
Season: 60-22 straight, 35-45-2 against the spread