According to various websites that I looked through while doing research for this final week of investments — not counting those that kept asking for a credit card number, age verification and automatically opened 27 new windows (Close! Close! Dang it, close!) while my wife screamed down to the basement, “Are you still looking at point spreads!?” — I came across some interesting statistics.
The chances of winning Wednesday night’s $579 million Powerball drawing were approximately 1 in 176 million. That was still far more likely than the odds of having a meteor land on my house: 1 in 182,138,880,000,000. Or about double that for the same meteor landing on the ACC championship game and hitting somebody.
Other odds I came across: 1 in 3 million chance of spotting a UFO; 1 in 11,500 of bowling 300 in a game; 1 in 649,740 of being dealt a royal flush; 1 in 20 million of being canonized; about even-money that one of those Christmas bell-ringers in front of Kroger will spot Bobby Petrino and punch him in the face, and 99 out of 100 that the aforementioned bell-ringer will be canonized.
Which leads me to Saturday’s SEC championship game between Alabama and Georgia. The odds are against Georgia winning. I know this because I keep hearing analysts break down the Alabama-Notre Dame game like Georgia is a hologram.
Yes, Alabama is good. The Tide have won two of the past three national titles. People are scared when they just look at a picture of Nick Saban, although in fairness you can’t tell from the picture that he’s only 4-foot-2.
Here’s what I see: Georgia’s defense is playing really well. Aaron Murray is throwing to the correct receivers (also the correct team). Todd Gurley — freshman going on Athens mayor. The Bulldogs were smacked at South Carolina, but Alabama lost at home to Texas A&M. The Aggies scored touchdowns on their first three possessions with that crazy no-huddle thing that Saban fears will doom civilization.
Georgia has a shot. A good shot. In fact — wait, did somebody just see a meteor? — I’m going upset. Take the 7½ points, but Dogs win the SEC and move on to the BCS.
(Programming note: We’ll be back in a few weeks with a special bowl edition of “Weekend Predictions,” as well as a new “Sack Schultz” bowl contest. Details to come.)
It’s Hawaii or Bust! You contest video update
(Look for expanded SEC and ACC game predictions in Saturday’s AJC.)
ACC: Georgia Tech vs. FSU: John Swofford dreamed the other night that he was eaten by 12,000 tarantulas. Unfortunately, he woke up to the real nightmare of his deteriorating conference title game: Tech is coming off a loss to Georgia. FSU is coming off a loss to Florida. Tech (6-6) is only because Miami and North Carolina are in NCAA timeout. Need a ticket? It’s $4. A section? Still $4. Seminoles win but take Tech and 14.
Pac-12: UCLA: vs. Stanford: Jim Mora denies he intentionally lost last week’s game to Stanford to avoid a match-up with Oregon. I believe him. Only brilliant coaches could pull off something that devious. Same story in the rematch: Cardinal covers 9.
Big Ten: Nebraska vs. Wisconsin: Wisconsin is the Big Ten’s highest ranking ethical team in the Leaders Division at 4-4 and therefore is a conference finalist. So I guess the term “Leaders” is all relative to the Big Ten, huh? Huskers covers 2½.
What the ACC needs is a good promotion
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Saints at Falcons: The Saints are 5-6. If the playoffs opened today, they’d be in the Poinsettia bowl. This also will be Jonathan Vilma’s last game before the NFL bounty hearings, so if y’all could bring some cookies or maybe write a nice card for him to read during incarceration, that would be nice. Meanwhile, the Falcons are pretty banged up. But at 10-1, pain is all relative. Falcons cover 3½.
NFL Fridge Pack
Seahawks at Bears: Forget Adderall suspensions. Chicago’s Brandon Marshall claims some players are seeking an edge with Viagra. Funny. I never looked at preseason games as foreplay before. Chicago covers 3½.
Texans at Titans: And then there’s the anti-Viagra: Ndamukong Suh’s foot somehow ended up in Matt Schaub’s groin. The good news: If Houston goes to the Super Bowl, Schaub can sing the national anthem. Houston wins but give me Tennessee and 6.
49ers at Rams: There are two sides to the debate on whether Jim Harbaugh should have benched Alex Smith. One side: It’s only Alex Smith. The other side: well, actually, there is no other side. Niners cover 7.
Panthers at Chiefs: If the Panthers (3-8) lose, it would make the home stretch stumble for the No. 1 pick interesting. Probably explains why the Chiefs (1-10) announced plans to wear Crocs. Carolina covers 3.
Eagles at Cowboys: Online headline: “Andy Reid to coach this week.” That would be a season first. Dallas covers 10.
The Eagles are dead. Like the parrot
TIME TO SETTLE UP
“If you ain’t just a little scared when you enter a casino, you are either very rich or you haven’t studied the games enough.” — VP Pappy
Last week: 10-1 straight up, 7-3-1 against the line.
Bottom dollars: 110-35 straight up, 85-58-2 against the line.
“Sack Schultz” update: This is it — the winner of the $5,000 Hawaii trip will be awarded this week. Our leader is “Wildone” of Kansas at 146 wins but 10 others are within five picks. I am not one of those 10.
Lilly Pick of the Week: Lilly (8-4) is on a five-game winning streak since her one-week furlough. This week, it was a choice between cheese-accessorized pictures of Uga and Nick Saban. Didn’t even look at Saban. Straight to Uga. Arf.
By Jeff Schultz
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