Man vs. Woman vs. Machine is a feature that runs every Thursday afternoon. It's here where Tom Fornelli fights against the rising tide of female empowerment and technology to ensure that men everywhere can at least claim college football is still theirs. He does this by picking a set of games against the spread against his girlfriend, Lynn, and his Playstation 3.
If the first week of the season was any indication this year's Man vs Woman vs Machine is going to be a hell of a battle. As has been the case all too often in this feature, Woman currently has the lead, but all three of our competitors combined to go 22-8 last week.
So the real winner would have been you if you listened to our picks.
Hopefully we'll be able to carry that momentum through week two and the rest of the season. And by "we'll" I mean me. Hopefully I'll be able to keep this momentum the rest of the year. Woman and Machine can crash and burn for all I care.
Man -- I just need to point out that the fact we're actually picking this game this week shows you how thin the slate is overall. I mean, I have no idea, truly. Vegas doesn't either, which is why this game has a three-point spread. So I'm just going with the home team. Pick: Boston College
Woman -- Here's what I know about this game: absolutely nothing. But what I do know is that upon my death, I will bequeath to Wake Forest all my earthly possessions if they air this video as their institutional spot on Saturday (NSFW language). And to show I mean business, President Hatch, I'll start by giving you my pick. Pick: Wake Forest
Machine -- The Machine was just as bored simulating this game as you will be watching it. Wake Forest wins 17-10. Pick: Wake Forest
Florida (-3) at Miami -- Saturday, 12 p.m.
Man -- I was very impressed with Miami running back Duke Johnson last week, and the Canes offense in general, but it's a big step up in class from the FAU defense to the Florida defense. Plus, not to scare anybody, Florida's offense actually looked competent last week. Pick: Florida
Woman -- Miami looked fierce last week but, c'mon, they were playing Florida South Central Manatee or Atlantic All World Community College or whatever. Sorry, one week cannot wipe out memories of last year's cringeworthy Hurricane defense. Speaking of defense, Gator star cornerback Loucheiz Purifoy and three other suspended players are returning for this game. So I'm ignoring Miami's home history against the spread because what I hear is CHOMP CHOMP CHOMP. Pick: Florida
Machine -- The Machine has something in common with Vanilla Ice, as it sees the Canes pulling off a 27-20 upset. Pick: Miami
Man -- I'm incredibly wary of giving up this many points with a home underdog, and after seeing both of these teams perform last weekend, this just seems too obvious. But you know what? Some times things are too obvious for a reason. Pick: Cincinnati
Woman -- Ron Shelton wakes up in the middle of the night angry he didn't come up with the name Munchie Legaux. Pick: Cincinnati
Machine -- The Machine loves home dogs! It doesn't have the Illini pulling off the upset, but it has them hanging tight in a 31-28 Cincinnati win. Pick: Illinois
Man -- Virginia punted 13 times last week. Virginia averaged 3.0 yards per play last week. Virginia still somehow managed to beat BYU. Me thinks things will be a bit different this week. Pick: Oregon
Woman -- The Ducks gasped in awe as Chip Kelly waved his wand and a pair of magic shoes suddenly appeared. The Coach smiled. "Just click your cleats together three times and say, 'There's no place like the BCS Bowl, there's no place like the BCS Bowl...'" And like that, he disappeared into a cloud of smoke, never to be seen on Saturdays again. Pick: Oregon
Machine -- See, I told you The Machine likes home dogs. Though he doesn't like Virginia all that much, as the Cavs are saved by the hook. Oregon wins 41-20. Pick: Virginia
Man -- My biggest fear when it comes to picking games in the second week of the season is that we overreact to what we saw during the first week. But I have serious concerns about Georgia's offensive line at the moment, and South Carolina is not the team you want to be playing with potential problems on your offensive line. Pick: South Carolina
Woman -- This is, perhaps, the saddest and most accurate metaphor for the poor Bulldogs. Don't think they'll be getting out of the backseat this Saturday. Pick: South Carolina
Machine -- The Machine believes Georgia fans have nothing to cry about, as the Dawgs get their revenge for last season, winning 27-7. Pick: Georgia
Man -- I was very impressed with the way the Wildcats were able to overcome injuries -- the real one, not the pretend ones -- to Kain Colter and Venric Mark on the road last week. I full expect to be impressed again this week, though Northwestern's tendency to play close games does worry me a little. Pick: Northwestern
Woman -- Remember that heart-stopper the Orange played against Northwestern last year? Me either, not after watching that Penn State stinker last week. The Wildcats are on the move up and the Syracuse newbies will be just another notch in this season's belt. Pick: Northwestern
Machine -- Maybe The Machine just likes underdogs? We're now six games deep and this is the fifth underdog Machine has taken, though Northwestern wins 31-24. Pick: Syracuse
Man -- As we mentioned a bit in an earlier game, BYU's defense played just fine last week against Virginia. I don't know if the Cougars will have enough on offense to knock off the Longhorns, but if you're giving me the BYU defense and points in Provo, there's only one way I can go. Pick: BYU
Woman -- Mack Brown is touting a new, improved Texas team and they did play reasonably well in their opener. But I'm obsessing over Provo's thin air, the joyful chaos at LaVell Edwards, a stout Cougar defense and, my biggest concern, the danger that the Longhorns are more focused on Ole Miss next week than BYU this week. Yeah, this one has "trap game" written all over it. Pick: BYU
Machine -- So much for the home dog theory. Texas wins in a blowout, 42-13. Pick: Texas
Man -- Again, I worry that I'm overreacting a bit here, but Oklahoma's defense looked mighty impressive last week, didn't it? And West Virginia looked like, well, it looked like the West Virginia of second half of the 2012 season. This spread seems dangerous, but I'm confident all the same. Pick: Oklahoma
Woman -- This pick isn't about who's winning, it's by whether it will be by three touchdowns. God, I hate huge spreads, they make you old before your time. So, when do they open the buffet? Pick: Oklahoma
Machine -- We all agree for the first time this week. Boomer Sooner 45-17. Pick: Oklahoma
Man -- I've gone back and forth on this game about forty different times since originally picking Michigan, but at the end of the day I figured I just need to stick with my gut. Ann Arbor will give the Wolverines the edge in what should be a pretty good game. Pick: Michigan
Woman -- I remember how, if it wasn't for a couple mistakes, Michigan could have brought down the Irish last year. More important, Brady Hoke remembers. Big House. Big Lights. Big Home Crowd. Big Win. Pick: Michigan
Machine -- The Machine agrees with Man that this will be a close game, but it disagrees on the cover. Michigan wins 20-17. Pick: Notre Dame
Man -- Listen, you can keep waiting for the USC offense to finally get its act together under Lane Kiffin. While you're doing that I'll be over here knowing what part of that last sentence will keep it from ever happening. Plus, while it wasn't a great performance, the Washington State offense looked pretty good on the road in a very tough environment last week. Pick: Washington State
Woman -- When you dislike someone as much as I dislike Lane Kiffin, it's very hard to make a rational pick, but I'll do my best. Let's start with that Trojan offense against Hawaii last week, you know, the one where they trailed 5-3 for nearly a half hour before someone finally told them Game Day didn't mean a wild boar luau. Then we have USC's celebrated Two Quarterback Monte - round and round she goes, which quarterback plays, nobody knows... Wait, I just read this. I take it back. I can't be rational. Pick: Washington State
Machine -- The Machine is not nearly as confident in Washington State as Man and Woman. The Trojans roll 52-20.
|Man vs. Woman vs. Machine|
|Wake Forest at Boston College (-3)|
|Florida (-3) at Miami|
|Cincinnati (-7.5) at Illinois|
|Oregon (-21.5) at Virginia|
|South Carolina at Georgia (-3)|
|Syracuse at Northwestern (-12)|
|Texas (-7) at BYU|
|West Virginia at Oklahoma (-20.5)|
|Notre Dame at Michigan (-3.5)|
|Washington State at USC (-15)|