Saturday, November 28, 2009

NFL PICKS - Week 12

Week 11 NFL Results: 8-8
NFL Results Season to Date: 82-90-1

Week 11 College Football Results: 3-1
College Football Results Season to Date: 28-19

Week 11 This Is Why Results: 1-3
This is Why Results Season to Date: 25-21

Week 11 NFL Picks (winners in parentheses):

Thanksgiving Day Games

Green Bay -9 At Detroit (Green Bay)
At Dallas -11 Oakland (Oakland)
New York Giants -7 At Denver (Denver)

Indianapolis -3.5 At Houston (Indianapolis)
At Cincinnati -14 Cleveland (Cincinnati)
At Minnesota -10.5 Chicago (Minnesota)
At Philadelphia -9 Washington (Philadelphia)
Miami -3.5 At Buffalo (Miami)
At Tennessee -3 Arizona (Arizona)
Seattle -3 At St. Louis (Seattle)
At Atlanta -12 Tampa Bay (Tampa Bay)
At New York Jets -3 Carolina (Carolina)
At San Francisco -3.5 Jacksonville (San Francisco)
At San Diego -13.5 Kansas City (Kansas City)
Baltimore At Pittsburgh No Line (With Roethlisberger out, I'm taking Baltimore at any line of -7 or less)

Monday Night Football

At New Orleans -1.5 New England (New England)

College Picks

At Florida -24.5 Florida State (Florida)
At Georgia Tech -7.5 Georgia (Georgia Tech)
At LSU -3.5 Arkansas (LSU)
At Stanford -10 Notre Dame (Stanford)

This is Why

Here are the pro and college lines that I would put money on, and why:

STANFORD -10 over Notre Dame - Charlie Weiss is all but officially on lame duck status. He is also going against a Stanford team that is coached by his possible replacement in Jim Harbaugh. Stanford running back Toby Gerhart should run all over the Irish defense. "Notradamus" says Cardinal wins 34-13.

Kansas City +13.5 over SAN DIEGO - As much as I hate Kansas City's team this year, a 13.5 point line is too high for a San Diego team missing their two Pro-Bowl defensive tackles in Jamal Williams and Luis Castillo. Look for Kansas City to establish the run, slow this game down, and cover the spread.

MINNESOTA -10.5 over Chicago - Jay Cutler struggles on the road. He also struggles with pressure behind a disappointing offensive line. This week he travels to the Metrodome to face the best pass rush in football. I like the Vikings in a blow-out.

PHILADELPHIA -9 over Washington - I thought Washington had a chance to keep the score down and cover the spread until Albert Haynesworth was deactivated with an injury. Now Philly should have their choice of running or picking on Washington cornerback Carlos Rogers.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Talking Points

Here's the link to my first column for It's Just Sports on My weekly column will be called "Talking Points." Your comments on the Mlive website, both positive and negative, are greatly appreciated. I'd like to give a special thanks to Patrick Hayes and everyone at It's Just Sports for getting me started.

Friday, November 20, 2009

NFL PICKS - Week 11

Week 10 NFL Results: 9-6
NFL Results Season to Date: 74-82-1

Week 10 College Football Results: 4-1
College Football Results Season to Date: 25-18

Week 10 This Is Why Results: 3-1
This is Why Results Season to Date: 24-18

Week 11 NFL Picks (winners in parentheses):

At Carolina -3 Miami (Carolina)
At Detroit -3 Cleveland (Detroit)
At Jacksonville -8.5 Buffalo (Jacksonville)
Pittsburgh -10 At Kansas City (Pittsburgh)
At Baltimore -1 Indianapolis (Indianapolis)
At New York Giants -6.5 Atlanta (New York Giants)
At Green Bay -6.5 San Francisco (San Francisco)
At Minnesota -10.5 Seattle (Minnesota)
At Dallas -11 Washington (Washington)
New Orleans -11 At Tampa Bay (New Orleans)
Arizona -9 At St. Louis (Arizona)
At New England -10.5 New York Jets (New England)
Cincinnati -9 At Oakland (Cincinnati)
San Diego even At Denver (San Diego)
Philadelphia -3 At Chicago (Chicago)

Monday Night Football

At Houston -5 Tennessee (Tennessee)

College Picks

Central Michigan -16.5 At Ball State (Central Michigan)
Boise State -21.5 At Utah State (Boise State)
Ohio State -12 At Michigan (Ohio State)
At Ole Miss -3.5 LSU (LSU)

This is Why

Here are the pro and college lines that I would put money on, and why:

Pittsburgh -10 over KANSAS CITY - Kansas City finds a keeper in waiver wire pickup WR Chris Chambers, then promptly loses Dwayne Bowe to a suspension for taking a banned substance. Even with Troy Palamalu out for this game, I don't think Kansas City has the fire power to matchup with Pittsburgh's pass happy offense.

New Orleans -10 over Tampa Bay - I'm always wrong when I pick with my gut instead of my brain. I noted in a comment on my Week 10 NFL Picks blog entry that Tampa Bay has been a different team with Josh Freeman behind center. I also noted that the New Orleans offense was slowing down (actually they are becoming more balanced and run orientated), causing New Orleans to fail to cover the large spreads that they have been generating after their early season point production. So with this game being played in Tampa Bay, I'm logically taking New Orleans and laying the 10 points. The only reason I'm doing so is this is the first week that I think Vegas has sufficiently adjusted the New Orleans point spread downward in order to reflect their more ball controlled offense and injuries on the defensive side of the ball.

Cincinnati -9 over OAKLAND - The Bengals are a really good team. In spite of missing Cedric Benson due to injury and traveling to the west coast, the Bengals should be able to move the ball against the Raiders defense. I'm betting that new starting QB Bruce Gradkowski will not move the Raiders offense any better than JeMarcus Russell would against a solid Bengals defense.

JACKSONVILLE -8.5 over Buffalo - Buffalo is turning their offense over to a quarterback in Ryan Fitzpatrick who can't throw the deep ball. He will also be playing behind an offensive line that is starting it's 6th different tackle tandem due to injuries, so you can forget about supporting him with an already non-existent running game. Adding to the chaos in Buffalo, the Bills fired head coach Dick Jauron this week. While changing coaches sometimes can provide an underachieving team a spark, I think the Bills' problem is a lack of talent, not effort or chemistry. I really like Jacksonville's running game against Buffalo's weak defensive line.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

My Thanks To Everyone!

I would like to express my gratitude to those of you who helped me set up "The Red Mieni," as well as to any of you who have even so much as clicked on my blogspot profile. For a blog that I have not made public knowledge to even some of my closest of friends, I am more than thrilled to have received almost 800 "Profile Views" to date.

I am very excited to announce that I have been selected to write a weekly column for "It's Just Sports." "It's Just Sports" is a featured sports blog on For those of you outside the Great Lake state, is the online arm of Booth Newspapers, and is known for its in-depth coverage of sports and breaking news in the state of Michigan. The website is said to receive approximately 1.7 million hits every month. Booth Newspapers owns The Ann Arbor News (now operating as, The Bay City Times, The Flint Journal, The Grand Rapids Press, The Jackson Citizen Patriot, The Kalamazoo Gazette, The Muskegon Chronicle, and The Saginaw News. Mlive's sister sites include,,,,, and

The weekly column that I have been asked to write for "It's Just Sports" is going to focus on a review of the local and national sports media. While no topic within that category will be off limits, I'm going to try to focus on critiquing comments from studio hosts and announcers touching on athletes and teams from the state of Michigan whenever possible (so long as it makes for entertaining reading). I'm also going to analyze the studio shows and broadcast booths of the major television networks for pro and college sports during their respective seasons. So if any of you out there are watching a game where an announcer says something that is either especially profound or that you couldn't disagree more with, please give me a shout....I can only Tivo and watch so many games a week.

While I'm going to focus on writing for "It's Just Sports" and, I'll be sure to post or link those weekly columns to "The Red Mieni." I will continue to post blog entries like my weekly football picks exclusively on this site. I also look forward to tackling columns that I intend to write annually on "The Red Mieni," such as "Oscar Predictions from a Hollywood Outsider" and my various "NFL Mock Drafts" in the upcoming months. I do hope that those of you who visit "The Red Mieni" from time to time will also check out my work on "It's Just Sports." This new link to a major newspaper conglomerate should only increase the traffic and my love for this site. Remember, the more people who comment on my columns for "It's Just Sports," the better. The links to Mlive and "It's Just Sports" are: and

Again, I would like to extend my most sincere thanks to everybody who has supported me to date. I definitely look forward to continuing on with "The Red Mieni," as well as with this new opportunity that I have been presented with at "It's Just Sports" and

Thanks again,

-The Red Mieni

Monday, November 16, 2009

NFL PICKS - Week 10

Week 9 NFL Results: 4-8
NFL Results Season to Date: 65-76-1

Week 9 College Football Results: 1-4
College Football Results Season to Date: 27-22

Week 9 This Is Why Results: 1-3
This is Why Results Season to Date: 21-17

Week 10 NFL Picks (winners in parentheses):

At San Francisco -3 Chicago (Chicago)
At New York Jets -7 Jacksonville (Jacksonville)
At Pittsburgh -7 At Cincinnati (Cincinnati)
At Tennessee -6.5 Buffalo (Tennessee)
At Minnesota -16.5 Detroit (Minnesota)
New Orleans -13.5 At St. Louis (New Orleans)
Atlanta -2 At Carolina (Atlanta)
At Miami -10 Tampa Bay (Tampa Bay)
At Oakland -2 Kansas City (Kansas City)
At Arizona -8 Seattle (Arizona)
At San Diego -1 Philadelphia (Philly)
Dallas -2.5 At Green Bay (Green Bay)
At Indianapolis -2.5 New England (Indy)

Monday Night Football

Baltimore -10.5 At Cleveland (Baltimore)

College Picks

At Wisconsin -8.5 Michigan (Wisconsin)
Western Michigan -12 At Eastern Michigan (Western Michigan)
At Ole Miss -4.5 Tennessee (Ole Miss)
Florida -15.5 At South Carolina (Florida)
Alabama -12 At Mississippi State (Alabama)

This is Why

Here are the pro and college lines that I would put money on, and why:

MINNESOTA -16.5 over Detroit - Brett Favre vs. Detroit's secondary, or Adrian Peterson against Detroit's run defense. Factor in Minnesota being able to shut down Detroit's running game and Detroit has little chance of staying close in this game.

New Orleans -13.5 over ST. LOUIS - Possibly the best team in the league, against one of the worst. Even at home St. Louis shouldn't be able to put enough points on the board to hang with Drew Brees and New Orlean's offense.

Cincinnati + 7 over PITTSBURGH - The Bengals have quietly become one of the better teams in the league. Their surprisingly good offensive line should allow Cedric Benson and company an chance to keep this game close in a defensive game.

Baltimore -10.5 over CLEVELAND - Whether it's Brady Quinn or Derrick Anderson behind center for the Browns, I don't like their chances against Baltimore's defense. Cleveland simply has no weapons on the offensive side of the ball, and Baltimore's offense has shown the ability to put points on the board for the first time in years.

Friday, November 6, 2009

NFL PICKS - Week 9

Week 8 NFL Results: 4-9
NFL Results Season to Date: 61-67-1

Week 8 College Football Results: 2-3
College Football Results Season to Date: 26-18

Week 8 This Is Why Results: 1-4
This is Why Results Season to Date: 20-14

Week 9 NFL Picks (winners in parentheses):

At Atlanta -10.5 Washington (Washington)
At Chicago -3 Arizona (Arizona)
Baltimore -3 At Cincinnati (Cincinnati)
At Indianapolis -8.5 Houston (Indy)
At Jacksonville -6.5 Kansas City (Jacksonville)
Green Bay -9.5 At Tampa Bay (Green Bay)
At New England -10.5 Miami (New England)
At New Orleans -14 Carolina (New Orleans)
At Seattle -10 Detroit (Detroit)
At New York Giants -5 San Diego (San Diego)
At San Francisco -4 Tennessee (San Francisco)
At Philadelphia -3 Dallas (Dallas)

Monday Night Football

Pittsburgh -3 At Denver (Denver)

College Picks

Boise State -21 At Louisiana Tech (Louisiana Tech)
Oregon -6.5 At Stanford (Oregon)
At California -7 Oregon State (California)
At Alabama -8 LSU (LSU)
At Notre Dame -11 Navy (Notre Dame)

This is Why

Here are the pro and college lines that I would put money on, and why:

LOUISIANA TECH -21 over Boise State - I don't think that I have ever picked against Boise State before. However, they have struggled in the past against Louisiana Tech, expecially when they have traveled to Ruston. A Friday night game on national TV serves to amp up the home crowd even further. I think Boise State wins, but fails to cover in a game that will be closer than most people think.

Oregon -6.5 over STANFORD - While my radar is going off for wanting to pick against Stanford in a late season Pac-Ten road team against a team rated in the Top Ten (the "Trees" are good for a random upset like this every few years), Oregon is quietly playing some of the best football in the country right now.

Green Bay - 9.5 over TAMPA BAY - Green Bay has managed to post a 4-3 record in spite of putting one of the worst offensive lines on the field this year due to injuries and a lack of depth. This week starting tackles Chad Clifton and Mark Tauscher return to the starting lineup. Aaron Rogers has been ridiculously good this year even while running for his life. If he is given any time to throw deep, look out. I'm not saying that Rogers is the NFL league MVP this year, but nobody has been more valuable to his team than he has. Green Bay's defense has been hit or miss this season, and they rely heavily on forcing turn-overs in their new 3-4 scheme. Tampa Bay is starting their third different quarterback on the season in rookie Josh Freeman, who in my opinion is nowhere near being ready to play in the NFL in terms of maturity or his grasp in reading defenses. I look for Green Bay to win in a blow-out.

SAN FRANCISCO -4 over Tennessee - I'm reluctantly taking Alex Smith in what I'm going to refer to as the Bust Bowl. These teams are actually very similar on paper. Both offenses look to establish the run. Both defenses are good at stopping the run. Both teams have turned their offenses over to a quarterback who was a former top three draft pick that has widely been regarded as a "bust" to date. When it comes down to it, I think San Francisco's defense is better as a whole in stopping both the run and pass. Furthermore, Maurice Jones-Drew and the Jacksonville Jaguars may have exposed some holes in the Tennessee run defense last week that Frank Gore may be able to exploit.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009


"You can criticize our calls. You can criticize our judgment. You can even criticize our intelligence.....but you cannot criticize our integrity." - SEC Coordinator of Officials, Rogers Redding.

Well Roger, I do question the integrity of your officials. And by the way, don't ever tell the rest of the country what we can't do in light of the shady shit going on below the Mason-Dixon Line when it comes to college football.

I know that SEC football fans don't want to hear thoughts on their conference from an acknowledged Big Ten guy, but how many Georgia, Arkansas, Mississippi State, and Tennessee fans felt slighted after their teams lost games to SEC front-runners jockeying for BCS positioning due to questionable/blown calls by conference referees?

One of the first things I noticed in terms of the socio-political climate upon moving down south was the corruption in local government, and in particular, county elections. At first I wondered why somebody would risk committing a crime in rigging an election simply to run a small community government in return for a salary that really wasn't worth the risk that was involved. Then somebody explained to me that the reward was not the salary of the elected position itself, but in the power that comes with the ability to appoint one's family members and friends to county positions. In essence, by virtue of taking office you gain the ability to provide for your own (not to mention the bribes that come with that power). What does any of this have to do with a football blog entry? Well each team appearing in a BCS Bowl game in 2009 earned their respective conference $17.5 million dollars (to be equally divided amongst the conference's teams). Taking after the political spoil system down south, it is my belief that SEC officials went out of their way to look after the conference's East and West division front-runners in order to ensure that as many teams as possible remained in contention for BCS Bowl bids. Unfortunately, they did so at the expense of the conference's middle of the road teams that were on the verge of pulling huge upsets this season. My take is that by bringing two undefeated teams to the SEC Championship Game at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta on December 5th, the conference will essentially ensure that two SEC teams make BCS Bowl games, and thereby bring that conference a minimum of $35 million dollars in revenue to be shared (in addition to the revenue that they receive from lesser bowl bids). Under this theory of protectionism, even a third SEC team like LSU could wind up with a major bowl bid, thereby bringing the conference payout even higher. In the event that an East or West division champion were to arrive at the SEC Championship Game with one loss, and then suffered their second defeat in that game, there would be no guarantee that the conference would receive a second at-large BCS Bowl bid, thereby COSTING the conference $17.5 million. Now, let's take an in-depth look at some facts and accusations that have transpired in the SEC this season in regards to conference officiating:

10/3/09 - LSU defeats Georgia in order to go 5-0. That game is decided in part due to an excessive celebration penalty that the SEC later acknowledges was an erroneous call by the officiating crew. Georgia previously had one loss (in their season opener at Oklahoma State), and falls to 3-2 in an obvious rebuilding year in which the Bulldogs had little or no chance to compete for a BCS Bowl bid. LSU remains undefeated and in contention for the SEC West title pending their upcoming matchups with Florida and Alabama.

10/17/09 - Undefeated and #1 ranked Florida narrowly avoids being upset in a 23-20 victory over Arkansas. Their victory is aided by three questionable calls late in the game by the same officiating crew that was reprimanded after the LSU-Georgia game two weeks earlier. Specifically, Arkansas is called for questionable pass interference and personal foul calls on back to back plays in the 4th quarter that aided a game-tying touchdown drive by the Gators. Later, the officials did not call Florida WR Riley Cooper for an apparent offensive pass interference penalty, helping set up Florida's game winning field goal. The officials working the Florida - Arkansas game becomes the first crew in SEC history to be suspended after the conference determines that some of the questionable penalties that they called were not supported by video evidence.

10/24/09 - Florida defeats Mississippi State 29-19. Video evidence appears to show Mississippi State's Brandon McCrae stripping Florida's Dustin Doe of the ball just before he crosses the goal line on a 4th quarter interception return for a touchdown. The call on the field is NOT reviewed by the replay booth, and the decision not to review that play effectively kills Mississippi State's chances of winning that game.

10/24/09 - Tennessee loses to Alabama on a blocked field goal by Terrence Cody as time expires. Before the play is over Cody removes his helmet, causing Tennessee coach Lane Kiffin to question the motives of the SEC officiating crew for not calling a penalty. While this is a petty argument from coach Kiffin given that even if a penalty had been called possession of the ball would have already changed over to Alabama, he is the first conference coach to formally insinuate a formal bias by SEC officials in favor of conference front-runners, Florida and Alabama.

10/30/09 - The SEC announces that any further comments from coaches criticizing officials will result in suspension/fine.

"The problem is there is greater scrutiny than ever because more SEC games are on national television now than ever because of the television contracts. We've made a couple of mistakes, but I think overall the officiating has been terrific — given the scruitiny. And I know our officials know they are under greater scrutiny, and because of that they are better." - SEC Coordinator of Officials, Rogers Redding (referring to missed calls by conference referees and the SEC's new contract with ESPN this season instead of local provider Jefferson-Pilot).

And to that Mr. Redding, may I say EXACTLY! In their quest to become the nation's power conference, the SEC now has heightened scrutiny on some of the good old boy shenanigans that have been taking place behind "closed doors" (relatively speaking in terms of the national media) over the last past 15 years. Now that the rest of America IS watching on national television, THE REST OF THE NATION NOT ONLY HAS THE RIGHT, BUT ALSO THE ABILITY TO QUESTION YOUR INTEGRITY....especially since the BCS is being manipulated into a political moneymaker instead of a mechanism to reward the country's best and most qualified college football teams. Look, I'm not a big C-O-N-spiracy theorist, but I first brought up how I was starting to notice a pattern of officiating errors in SEC games that clearly went in favor of the conference's front-runners when I was speaking with my "Old Racist Neighbor" after the Florida - Arkansas game on October 17th. If the SEC wants to stop the negative perception that their league is attempting to propel their expected front-runners to the top of their respective divisions, then they may want to reconsider suspending their coaches for criticizing officials for bad calls and make sure that their games are played on an level playing field. Otherwise, this "gag order" just makes it look like they are trying to cover something up. Needless to say, I don't expect LSU to get any calls if their game at Alabama this weekend is even remotely close.

Speaking of Lane Kiffin, is there a bigger idiot in the game of football right now? First he comes to Tennessee and publicly accuses Florida coach Urban Meyer of a recruiting infraction for contact with a recruit that was actually within NCAA rules. Then, after failing to live up to the victory that he predicted against Florida, Kiffin accused coach Meyer of downplaying the Gator's margin of victory due to an outbreak of the flu. After being reprimanded by the SEC for his verbal sparring with Meyer, Kiffin went on to accuse league officials of holding a bias in favor of certain teams (perhaps rightfully so) following the Vols loss to Alabama, which in part lead to the league implementing it's policy to suspend/fine any coach who publicly critizes conference referees. Before I say anything else, I will go on record as saying that I truly hated former Tennessee coach Phil Fulmer. I thought he was one the biggest sleaze bags in all of sports, and I really was counting down the days until he got fired and a more likeable replacement was named as head coach for the Vols. I also will go on record in saying that I initially thought that Lane Kiffin got a raw deal when he was fired by Al Davis and the Oakland Raiders. As insane as Al Davis might be, after seeing the way Lane Kiffin has acted at Tennessee I just might be in Al's corner. His infamous letter ( ripping coach Kiffin's integrity might not be that far off base after all. And as for Urban Meyer....while I've always respected him as a disciplinarian coach, his decision to suspend LB Brandon Spikes for only the first half of Florida's next game after he committed a blatant eye gouge of Georgia RB Washaun Ealey ( clearly shows that he is more interested in winning than all else. Sometimes teaching a player a valuable life lesson to help them improve as a person is more important than chasing a National Championship.