Broadsword calling Danny Boy: OK State vs Texas (-12 and the hook); Georgia vs Alabama (+160); The Moscow Fianchetto a la Gaza | Eastern North Carolina Now

ntil the early 20th century classical chess doctrine demanded centre squares be controlled and occupied by central pawns.

Spare a little candle
Save some light for me
Figures up ahead
Moving in the trees
White skin in linen
Perfume on my wrist
And the full moon that hangs over
These dreams in the mist

I search for the time
On a watch with no hands
I want to see you clearly
Come closer than this
But all I remember
Are the dreams in the mist

These dreams go on when I close my eyes
Every second of the night I live another life
These dreams that sleep when it's cold outside
Every moment I'm awake the further I'm away

Is it cloak 'n' dagger
Could it be spring or fall
I walk without a cut
Through a stained glass wall
Weaker in my eyesight
The candle in my grip
And words that have no form
Are falling from my lips
- Bernie Taupin

Becton Commandos storm the beaches of Myrtle, 1980: Above.     Click image to enlarge.

    Until the early 20th century classical chess doctrine demanded centre squares be controlled and occupied by central pawns. Those early struggles to control the center through proximity were the primary opening form until the bishop fianchetto, projecting long-range command, emerged. Ever the master chess player, Putin directed Russia to do the same in Ukraine -- as the Russian hyper-sonic fianchetto has left Kiev with 600,000 dead and begging for peace.


    In Gaza, Israel seeks a similar result. Costly ground attacks burn up time and lives, both of which Israel is in short supply. Thus Tel Aviv launches wave after wave of missile attacks into densely packed urban areas -- willing to sustain the feeble protests of the UN and other elements of the crumbling international order. Palestinians don't fund the UN and, in terms of collateral damage, are considered expendable by most of the Western world. However, in the north they don't play that game -- when it comes to the Golan, Hezbollah is the side with run-stopping defence.

    Like the Ukies and Hamas, we were on the wrong side of the run-stopping / missile equation this weekend. Boston College was a terrible call as we fall to 11-6 and up 14.15 units in this space. With the regular season concluded it is a good time to go back and review the campaign to date. Six losses are too many. Who were these teams, what was the spread, who made the call? How do we avoid such losing calls the distance? Let's check the tape.

    ** MISSISSIPPI STATE (+14 and the hook) vs Alabama (Westerby)

    ** CAL BEARS (+9 and the hook) vs Oregon State (Farnell)

    ** TENNESSEE (+270) at Alabama (Kurt)

    ** SOUTH CAROLINA (+235) at Missouri (Kurt)

    ** IOWA STATE (+260) vs Texas (Farnell)

    ** BOSTON COLLEGE (+9 and the hook) (Colvin)

    Boston College and Mississippi State were bad teams. We don't want to take bad teams unless they are getting at least two touchdowns. We opened a winner with a bad ECU team (plus 34 and the hook) against Michigan but would be hard pressed to do that again. South Carolina and Cal are average teams in tough conferences; South Carolina had no chance, Cal was in the game until late.


    Tennessee and Iowa State are good teams that were outmatched. The money line price was right but they got beat by better teams. We can live with that. The main thing we see is that two thirds of the losses came from guest pickers when Farnell had gone walk about; let's stick with the ENC scribe the remainder of college pigskin, Guv'nor, if you please.

    Someone please find Farnell. Sure, he can carry on a bit with the drivel, but It is Championship Week in the Colonies and we need winners, Man.


    "There is a difference in college post-season just as there is a difference in NFL post-season in terms of intensity and focus. However in college, much of that intensity flows toward the handicapping algo that shifts centralised price points; ergo, as the season lengthens we shift focus toward the chalk (favourites). Note that this resetting is for this weekend (end of 13 week cycle) and is not indicative of minor bowl game strategy as the bowls a completely different game cycle."

    "From this perspective, which of the favourites do we want? Michigan way too expensive and we already have Iowa (+1800) in the futures. Florida State looks wounded and Louisville likely the side there. We can't believe Oregon is nine over Washington. What we can believe is that Texas is the best team still out there and wishing we had gotten that Longhorns national champ futures ticket after the Oklahoma game instead of before it."

    "We love Texas in this game and feel laying anything less than 14 is the ticket here. The Longhorns enjoy one of the biggest run-stopping mismatches of the season and Oklahoma State is terrible on the road in terms of laying an egg. Cowboys can't stop the run; they are soft everywhere."

    "We had Oklahoma State against Texas last season in a monster position and only made it through a miracle; no way Texas does not recall that game and what happened -- we sure do. Texas in a style battle now for committee votes and playing the first game Saturday an advantage in terms of motivation in running up the score. If nine point underdog Washington beats Oregon Friday night, then the Longhorns will have already moved up one spot by game time. Texas has every incentive plus the talent and coaching to beat Mike Gundy at a neutral site game. Get it early as this game is likely to be 15 by the boot."


    Sounds as if Farnell really likes Texas because he sure doesn't like to lay points; the last time he chalked double-digits was Georgia against TCU. With that in mind our call here is TEXAS (-12 and the hook) for two units. We recall Farnell had the Tide in the SEC title game parlayed up with some Mahomes passing prop that made it, and also saw the unbelievable Iron Bowl ending. We will add ALABAMA (+160) for one unit to snap the Georgia twenty-nine game winning streak.

    The college numbers this week are razor sharp, unlike the bowl games which will be soft early and tight late. There are fewer games to select from now and the influx of casual action has not yet arrived as it will mid-December. Bowl games are about recognising from the git-go underdog value before the New Year's bonanza -- and then hoping the injury and transfer portal dynamics deliver a full and motivated squad on game day. Caution is the buzz word for this week.

TEXAS    36  •  OK STATE    12

ALABAMA    31  •  GEORGIA    24

    The November Rasputitsa eventually leads to the freeze of December as the ground in Ukraine becomes passable once more. Washington and London in a frantic battle to save face as Ukrainian resistance has crumbled after the much-vaunted Kiev counter-offensive burned through 150,000 lives and tens of billions of American taxpayer dollars. The focus now is on saving Israel's ass and Zelensky just another useful idiot to throw under the bus as middle-east genocide becomes all the rage.

    It is a rage that spills over into the streets of America, France and even Ireland now at an escalating pace. College campuses ruled with tyranny and fear today as any support for the Palestinians is quickly ostracised -- or worse. Stay silent on this issue or risk your future; that is the toxic reality of academia today.


    Twenty-five hundred Americans died storming the beaches at Normandy June 6, 1944; they didn't sacrifice themselves for this. Many of them did not have a high school education but they could still tell you about the constitution and the Bill of Rights better than most you see wandering the streets today. Those that survived came back home and made sure those rights were protected; they used the First and Second Amendments to see that the horrors of Europe never made it to America.

    Both the First and Second Amendments are now under a multi-spectral, multi-national siege as the peeps sleep though it all and Soylent Green becomes a reality. The ending .gov has planned for you is not the drone you are looking for.

    We are all Gazans now.
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