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College Football Picks Week 14: No. 1 Alabama At No. 4 Auburn, Florida State At Florida, Ohio State At Michigan, Clemson At South Carolina, Notre Dame At Stanford, Texas A&M At Missouri, UCLA At USC, More

Alabama at Auburn plus 10 other preview and picks below
  By Brad Carroll  
This is easily the biggest non-championship Saturday of the college football season. Each of the 11 games we will preview and pick against the spread either have major national or conference title implications, feature two heated rivals or simply should get all fans excited for what are a number of big-time matchups.

It's no doubt the perfect end to the two-day feast of college football games, which was chock full of games all day Friday as well as Saturday. All three national title contenders, plus two more on the fringe of the race, will be in action Saturday and put to the test in varying degrees of difficulty.

The biggest game of them all is No. 1 Alabama traveling to play No. 4 Auburn Saturday afternoon. That game is obviously the biggest challenge of the season so far for the Crimson Tide, but likely won't be the last if they survive, as the SEC championship would follow. Ohio State and Florida State are big favorites in their games, but each is facing a hated rival. Ohio State has to play in the Big House against Michigan, while Florida State goes to The Swamp to play Florida. Both the Wolverines and Gators are down this season, but in college football, anything can happen, especially in a rivalry game.

GameDay Live Football Scoring:
Battle For The Bell
Bristol Central At Bristol Eastern

Bristol Eastern 21, Bristol Central 18
Battle for the Bell
Bristol Central                       6   0   6   6   -   18
Bristol Eastern                      7   0   7   7   -   21

: Bristol Central's Drew Lee scores on a 13-yard pass from Jarrett Michaels.

GameDay Live Football Scoring:
Apple Valley Classic
No. 10 Southington At Cheshire

No. 10 Southington 38, Cheshire 6
Apple Valley Classic
(10) Southington                    7   0   17    14   -   38
Cheshire                                0   0     6      0   -    6

: Southington's Alex Jamele scores on a 25-yard pass from Stephen Barmore.

GameDay Live Football Scoring:
Olde Canal Cup
No. 25 Farmington At Plainville

No. 25 Farmington 34, Plainville 0
Olde Canal Cup
(25) Farmington                    6   8   6   15   -   34
Plainville                               0   0   0     0   -    0

: Farmington's Colin Gratton scores on a 16-yard run.

College Football Picks Week 14: Iowa At Nebraska, Arkansas At LSU, Miami At Pittsburgh, Washington State At Washington, Oregon State At Oregon, South Florida At Central Florida

Arkansas at LSU plus five other picks against spread below.
  By Brad Carroll  
The best part of the Thanksgiving holiday is fans get an extra full day of college football games. Not only do we get to eat plenty of turkey, stuffing and pies on Thursday, but we get another round of appetizers Friday with six college football games before another main course Saturday with 10 more rivalry matchups.

Friday's schedule opens rivalry week in college football, making each game meaningful no matter the rankings. We preview and pick against the spread Iowa at Nebraska, Arkansas at LSU, Miami at Pittsburgh, Washington State at Washington, Oregon State at Oregon and South Florida at Central Florida.

This is Part I of our weekly column, as Part II will feature the 10 Saturday games. That column will be posted soon, so make sure to check back. 

GameDay Live Football Scoring:
The Wishbone Bowl
Berlin At New Britain

New Britain 32, Berlin 6
The Wishbone Bowl
Berlin                                     0   6     0   0   -    6
New Britain                          12   0   14   6   -   32

: New Britain's Amuel Blair scores on an 11-yard run.

GameDay Live Football Scoring: Newington At Wethersfield

Wethersfield 16, Newington 14
Thanksgiving Eve Rivalry Game
Newington                            0   6   0   8   -    14
Wethersfield                         0   8   0   8   -    16

: Newington's Isaiah Young scores on an 8-yard run.

Cowboys 24, Giants 21: NFC East Title Hopes Dealt A Near Death Blow As Giants Fall Two Games Back In Race, Handing Out Game Balls & Falls

Terrell Thomas and the Giants suffered a tough loss. (AP photo)
  By Brad Carroll  
The New York Giants had complete momentum after they went down field and scored a touchdown and converted the two-point conversion to tie the Dallas Cowboys at 21 with under five minutes to play in a huge NFC East matchup Sunday night. The Giants needed a victory to pull within one game of the division-leading Eagles and tie the Cowboys for second place with a 5-6 record.

After Eli Manning hit Louis Murphy for a four-yard score and Andre Brown ran the two-pointer in, the stage was set for a comeback to put the Giants right back in the division race. After starting 0-6, that was deemed impossible, but the Giants were a stop and score away from moving closer to pulling off the impossible.

The Giants defense forced the Cowboys into a third and seven play on the subsequent possession and would be one play away from getting the ball back. But that's when the game and season started to turn for the Giants. Romo hit Dez Bryant for 17 yards and a first down. Two plays later, Romo again hit Bryant on a third and five play for a first down. After an incompletion, Romo hit Miles Austin for 17 yards to set up the Cowboys in field goal range. Romo wasn't done, however, connecting with Cole Beasley for a 13-yard pass on third and 10 to make what would have been a 45-yard field goal into a 35-yarder.

Ravens 19, Jets 3: Handing Out Game Falls To Geno Smith, Ed Reed, Dee Milliner, Antonio Cromartie, Offensive Line Plus Some Game Balls

Geno Smith gets tagged with a Game Fall after loss. (AP photo)
  By Brad Carroll  
The New York Jets' loss to the Baltimore Ravens Sunday was one of the most depressing of the season. The Jets, despite never being down by more than two touchdowns, gave fans zero hope they could win the game. The offense was inept, unable to even threaten to score a touchdown. The defense was beat deep twice in the game, a common problem this season, even with the addition of safety Ed Reed, who was supposed to stop that. The Jets simply had no shot.

The Jets fell to 5-6 on the season after the 19-3 loss, but still remain tied in the hunt for the final wild card berth. With five games to go, the Jets need to turn things around in a hurry or they will be left out again when the postseason begins.

Ravens 19, Jets 3: Jets Get Dose Of Reality, As Geno Smith, Secondary Are To Blame For Loss In Baltimore

Torrey Smith beats Antonio Cromartie deep Sunday. (AP pphoto)
  By Brad Carroll  
The New York Jets were given a dose of reality in a loss to the Baltimore Ravens Sunday afternoon. Actually, they were given several doses, starting with the quarterback and going to the secondary and finally the team's playoff candidacy. The Jets are now 5-6 and will need a ton of help to move into the final wild card spot at the end of the season. But that's not even that important right now.

The fact the Jets don't have a quarterback is. Geno Smith proved again he's not going to be a franchise passer. The biggest mistake the Jets could make after this season is to give Smith another chance. He doesn't deserve one. The best player on the Jets who played quarterback Sunday was Josh Cribbs. That's pathetic.

Smith was 8-of-21 for 117 yards and two interceptions. He now has 23 total turnovers in 11 games this season. The Jets scored three points. But it's not about production or turnovers alone.

Cowboys At Giants Preview: If Giants Want Stay To NFC East Title Race, They Must Beat Dallas Sunday At Home, Here's How They Can Win

  By Brad Carroll  
The New York Giants have done what many thought they couldn't after starting the season 0-6 - becoming relevant in the NFC East title race. Winning four games in a row has put the Giants just 1.5 games back of the Eagles for first place and one game behind the Cowboys for second. If the Giants win Sunday, they will be just one game out of the division lead and a playoff berth.

But the Giants will be tested for the first time during their win streak Sunday against the Cowboys. In their four-game win streak the Giants have beaten the Vikings, Eagles, Raiders and Packers, when each team was missing a key player or starting a new quarterback. The Giants won't get any breaks against Dallas at home, as Tony Romo and company should be at full strength on offense. Even Miles Austin should play.

On defense, the Cowboys will be missing key linebacker Sean Lee, but the rest should be the typical Dallas lineup. While Lee is a huge loss, the Giants will prove themselves worthy of the divisional title race with a victory Sunday.

Jets At Ravens Preview: Geno Smith, Jets Seek Bounce-Back Performance In Baltimore In Game With Playoff Implications, Here's How They Win

  By Brad Carroll  
It's officially impossible to figure out exactly what kind of team the New York Jets are. One week they play well enough to look like contenders in the AFC. The next week they look like a team that might not win a game, let alone qualify for the postseason. It's been historically maddening, as the Jets are the only team in NFL history to alternate wins and losses through 10 games of a season.

At 5-5, however, the Jets still control their own destiny, which is amazing considering the last time the team was on the field they were getting routed, 37-14, by a Bills team that is hanging by a thread in the postseason race. If the Jets win out this season, obviously a big if, they will make the playoffs. Coming into Sunday's play, the Jets are tied with the Dolphins for the final playoff spot. The Jets still have two games remaining against Miami this season.

Yankees Sign Catcher Brian McCann For Five Years At $85M With Option For Sixth, A Great Deal For New York

The Yankees signed free agent catcher Brian McCann. (AP photo)
  By Brad Carroll  
The New York Yankees haven't wasted any time in filling one of their biggest needs this offseason, signing free agent catcher Brian McCann to a five-year, $85 million contract that will have an option for a sixth year that could bring the total amount of the deal to $100 million, multiple media outlets are reporting. The deal will have a full no-trade clause. It's pending a physical.

The deal comes as a surprise as most free agents in baseball take a long while in picking a future employer, unlike the NFL and NBA, where the free agency period is played at break-neck speed.

With McCann, the Yankees finally have a player who can man the catching position since Jorge Posada retired. Last year, Austin Romine and Chris Stewart were the main catching duo and did nothing offensively. Worse yet, their defense wasn't very good either.

Red Sox Offseason Shopping List: Big Decisions This Winter For World Champions, Here's What Boston Should Do With Jacoby Ellsbury, Starting Rotation, Infield And More

  By Matt Straub  

When the duckboats parked and the champagne dried, many Red Sox fans reveled in their victory for a few more days while those charged with building the roster which will defend the World Series trophy next year got right to work. Within a week qualifying offers had to be made and the Red Sox had to begin formulating their offseason plans.

Fortunately, after the initial buzz, a waiting game began. Every winter begins with excitement and then slows to a crawl in terms of player movement in baseball before the holidays. Well, Thanksgiving is nearly upon us and the Hot Stove is starting to get turned back on, as evidenced by the Prince Fielder-Ian Kinsler trade this week. Some other small moves have been made, but the sport’s silly season is just beginning.

Those decisions made in the days after the parade ended might play a huge role in shaping Boston’s shopping list. The details will take a couple of months to sort out, but Boston has to know the general direction it wants to take because of how many dominoes need to be knocked over.

College Football Picks Week 13: Baylor At Oklahoma State, Texas A&M At LSU, Oregon At Arizona, Missouri At Ole Miss, Arizona State At UCLA, Indiana At Ohio State, BCS, More

Oklahoma State vs.Baylor plus 11 other game picks below
  By Brad Carroll  
We're down to four teams vying for the right to play for the BCS national championship and each is undefeated as college football gets closer and closer to reaching its regular season conclusion. Having four unbeaten teams this late in the year during the BCS era would typically be filled with controversy and anger coming from fans everywhere. But this year has been different.

Nobody outside of Baylor and Ohio State supporters will complain if Alabama and Florida State are the only undefeated teams getting the chance to play for the national championship. The Crimson Tide and Seminoles have proven so far this year they are the two best teams in college football. Baylor has a better case than Ohio State does as who is third best, but overall, the competition level has destroyed both team's chances at this point.

There's no guarantee more than two undefeated teams will remain after conference championship week, however. Top-ranked Alabama plays at No. 6 Auburn next week and then in the SEC championship against, possibly, No. 8 Missouri. That is two huge challenges for the Crimson Tide.

Giants 27, Packers 13: Giants Beat Packers For Fourth Straight Win, Move Within 1.5 Games Of NFC East Lead, Handing Out Game Balls

Jon Beason celebrates after his interception. (AP photo)
  By Brad Carroll  
What should frighten every team in the NFC East right now is the left-for-dead New York Giants could be the best team in the division. It's hard to argue with that statement, especially after the Giants defeated the Packers 27-13 Sunday night. After losing their first six games of the season, the Giants have now won four straight and are just 1.5 games back of the Eagles for the division lead.

The real test of just how good these Giants are comes next week, when the Cowboys come into MetLife Stadium. The Cowboys are 5-5, a half-game back of the Eagles, who beat the Redskins Sunday to take over the NFC East lead at 6-5. Philadelphia is off next week. Washington is 3-7 and on life support.

The Giants are certainly ascending this year, and not just in terms of victories. The running game, which was putting up numbers that were historically low early on, now is a legitimate threat. Andre Brown and Brandon Jacobs combined for 75 yards and a touchdown against the Packers Sunday. The week prior, against Oakland, Brown went for 115. The defense may have had the biggest turnaround, though, doing a complete 180 from the beginning of the year.

Bills 37, Jets 14: Handing Out Game Falls To Geno Smith, Offensive Line, Antonio Cromartie, Dee Milliner, Stephen Hill, Rex Ryan After Terrible Loss To Bills Drops Jets To 5-5

Santonio Holmes was one of the few who played well. (AP photo)
  By Brad Carroll  
The New York Jets made NFL history Sunday afternoon in a 37-14 loss to the Buffalo Bills, becoming the first team to alternate wins and losses each week through 10 games of a season. It's a piece of history the Jets don't want any part of, as it comes after a humiliating loss to the Bills that has epitomized this consistently inconsistent season.

The Jets are now 5-5 and are guaranteed to be at least tied for the final wild card spot in the AFC. The division is all but lost now and the future doesn't look as good as it did around 1 p.m. Sunday. Geno Smith have proven he's not the answer at quarterback with another terrible performance. Nothing went right in Buffalo and those that wrote the Jets were contenders (us included) look foolish.

Here's our in-depth look into the loss to the Bills, as we single out the good and bad from the road defeat with our Game Balls and Game Falls feature. We start, obviously, with the bad.

Geno Smith Proves He's Not Jets Answer At Quarterback With Another Horrible Performance In Loss To Bills

Geno Smith dives for a fumble Sunday in a loss. (AP photo)
  By Brad Carroll  
It's fitting CBS was promoting the Texas A&M-LSU college football game during the Buffalo Bills destruction of the New York Jets Sunday afternoon. Watching Jets quarterback Geno Smith play so bad, so terrible, so horrendous, fans could only dream of having someone like Heisman trophy winner Johnny Manziel running the Jets offense next year.

Nobody could have watched the Jets' 37-14 loss to Buffalo Sunday and still say Smith is a franchise quarterback. He's not. Yes, he's tricked everyone into believing he might be, by playing great when you least expect it. But the bad far outweighs the good, especially now.

Smith was 8-of-23 for 103 yards with three interceptions and a fumble lost. One of the interceptions was returned for a touchdown. The fumble gave the Bills the ball inside the five and was turned into a score. It was an embarrassing afternoon for Smith. The rookie now has 16 interceptions and has fumbled seven times this season. He has just eight touchdown passes.

Packers At Giants Preview: Giants Can Move Closer To NFC East Lead With Win Over Rodgers-Less Packers, We Break Down How Giants Can Win

  By Brad Carroll  
The breaks keep on coming for the New York Giants. The Green Bay Packers will be without quarterback Aaron Rodgers when they come into MetLife Stadium Sunday, having to start their third-string quarterback against the Giants. The difference is obvious, especially considering the Giants are solid favorites at home without him, but would be underdogs if Rodgers was playing.

The Giants may be getting the breaks, with the biggest being playing in a division where the leader is just 5-5 on the season, but the team still must win the games on the field. They have been doing that the last three games, rebounding to a 3-6 record after losing their first six of the season. If the Giants can win this game against Green Bay and the Redskins beat the Eagles, they will be just one game out of the NFC East race.

The Packers will turn to Scott Tolzien, who gets his first-ever start, against the Giants, and while his presence changes the game, it will be the running game on both side of the ball that determines the winner.

Jets At Bills Preview: If Jets Are Serious Playoff Contenders, They Must Beat Buffalo Sunday, We Break Down How The Jets Can Win

  By Brad Carroll  
With the signing of safety Ed Reed this week, the New York Jets made it clear they believe they are a playoff team. Forget about building for the future, at this moment the focus is on this season and getting into the postseason. At 5-4, the Jets currently hold sole possession of the final wild card spot in the AFC, so the team was certainly on their way already.

But now, the Jets go from a team with zero expectations, to one where they must make a run or this season will be considered a failure.

Sunday's game in Buffalo is huge for a number of reasons, the biggest obviously being the team needs a victory to keep their grip on the final wild card spot in the AFC and possibly gain a game in the divisional race as well. But the Jets will have to prove they can win after a bye week, something the team has had trouble with under Rex Ryan. The Jets will have to prove they can put together a winning streak, something they haven't done this entire season.

GameDay Live Football Scoring: Bristol Eastern At E.O. Smith

 Bristol Eastern 55, E.O. Smith 12
Bristol Eastern                        7   14   27   7   -   55
E.O. Smith                               6     6    0   0   -   12

: Bristol Eastern's Cyrus Tyler scores on a 22-yard run.

GameDay Live Football Scoring:
Holy Cross At St. Paul

 Holy Cross 49, St. Paul 46
Holy Cross                            14    14   14     7   -   49
St. Paul                                 12    14     6   14   -   46

: St. Paul's Brendan Carroll scores on a 20-yard pass from Logan Marchi.

College Football Week 12 Picks: Stanford At Southern Cal, Alabama At Mississippi State, Georgia At Auburn, Syracuse At Florida State, Oklahoma State At Texas, BCS Breakdown, More

Stanford at USC plus 11 other game previews and picks below
  By Brad Carroll  
Shockingly enough, the college football season is quickly approaching its final chapter. It's already Week 12 and we're down to just five teams with a realistic shot to play for the BCS national championship. Two teams have established themselves as the best so far, Alabama and Florida State, while three more, Ohio State, Baylor and Stanford, can still play their way in, with a lot of help, of course.

The BCS title game picture cleared up a bit after last week, but the overall view is still muddied with four true candidates plus one in between that could make for some very angry teams and fans when the final bowl lineup is set. Florida State and Ohio State should have little to no trouble finishing the regular season undefeated. Baylor has a tough finish, with a huge showdown against Oklahoma State next week. Stanford already has a loss on its resume, to Utah, but would be the top one-loss team if all others failed.

GameDay Live Football Scoring:
New Britain At Newington

 Newington 21, New Britain 6
New Britain                           0   0   0   6   -    6
Newington                            7   0   7   7   -   21

: New Britain's Marcus Torres scores on a 64-yard pass from Toby Taradeina.

GameDay Live Football Scoring:
South Windsor At No. 11 Southington

 (11) Southington 45, South Windsor 0
South Windsor                         0     0   0   0   -    0
(11) Southington                     28   14   3   0   -   45

: Southington's Kyle Smick kicks a 37-yard field goal.

GameDay Live Football Scoring:
East Catholic At Berlin

 Berlin 48, East Catholic 12
East Catholic                             6     0    0    6   -   12
Berlin                                       21   14   15   0   -   48

: East Catholic's Khalid Thompson scores on a 20-yard run.

GameDay Live Football Scoring: Fermi At Bristol Central

 Bristol Central 46, Fermi 7
Fermi                                       0    0   0   7   -     7
Bristol Central                       20   14   6   6   -   46

: Bristol Central's Barry McPhail scores on a 62-yard run.

Jets Signing Of Ed Reed Proves They Are Ready To Contend This Season

Ed Reed has signed with the Jets. (AP photo)
  By Brad Carroll  
Jets head coach Rex Ryan got what he wanted Thursday, as general manager John Idzik went out of his comfort zone and overall plan for the team by signing safety Ed Reed. The former Raven was released by the Texans earlier this week. Ryan coached Reed in Baltimore, so he knows exactly what he's getting.

The signing is great for the Jets on the field, as they needed a solid safety to play in Ryan's system. The entire secondary has been weak this season, the one thing stopping the Jets from having the best defense in the league. Reed's presence changes that. He not only is a ball-hawk, but he can help the younger players around him, including Antonio Allen, who is sure to lose his job, get better.

Reed might be nowhere near the player he was during his prime in Baltimore, but he's better than what the Jets currently have at the position. Plus, Reed has made his career at creating turnovers, something the Jets desperately need. The Jets' safeties have one interception this season.

GameDay Live Soccer Scoring:
No. 1 Suffield vs No. 12 Plainville
Class M State Semifinals

 (1) Suffield 4, (12) Plainville 1
Class M Boys Soccer State Semifinals
(12) Plainville                           0    1    -    1
(1) Suffield                               1    3    -    4

: Plainville's Nick D'Amico scores in the second half.

Giants 24, Raiders 20: Andre Brown Runs For 115 Yards In Return, Terrell Thomas Has Big Interception And Giants Stay Alive In NFC East Race, Game Balls & Game Falls After Win

Mathias Kiwanuka forces a fumble on Terrell Pryor. (AP photo)
  By Brad Carroll  
It might not have been overly impressive, but the New York Giants did what they had to do Sunday afternoon against the Raiders - win. As long as the Giants keep on winning, they will be in the hunt for the NFC East title as the season draws closer to its end. The Giants are now 3-6 on the year, tied with the Redskins for third place in the division. The Eagles beat the Packers to improve to 5-5 and the Cowboys lost to the Saints Sunday night to drop to 5-5.

While the Giants' victory over the Raiders wasn't a perfect showing, it was an example of what can happen when the team plays their brand of old-school football. Giants football.

The Giants used an attacking and opportunistic defense and a smash-mouth running game to remain in the divisional race, beating the Raiders 24-20. The Giants had four sacks and a huge interception that changed the course of the game in the third quarter. Andre Brown had 30 carries for 115 yards and a touchdown for an offense that rushed for 133 yards overall.

Raiders At Giants Preview: Giants Can Continue Unlikely Climb Back Into NFC East Race With Victory Over Oakland, Here's How They Can Do It

  By Brad Carroll  
The bye week couldn't have come at a worst time for the New York Giants. After winning two straight games to work their way back into the NFC East title picture, the Giants had to watch every other team in the division win games last week, further distancing themselves from the race for first place.

The Giants went from two games back of the first-place Cowboys to 2.5. But this week could get the team right back on track, especially after the Redskins lost Thursday night to the Vikings. A victory at home against the 3-5 Raiders would move the Giants into a tie with Washington at 3-6. They would still trail the Eagles and Cowboys, but momentum would clearly be on the Giants' side with a win.

Plus, it could turn out to be a winning week on all levels. The Giants are big favorites against Oakland, the Eagles are slight favorites against an Aaron Rodgers-less Packers on the road, and the Cowboys are big underdogs at New Orleans. If things break right, the once-dead Giants will have full life.

College Football Picks Week 11: LSU At Alabama, Florida State At Wake Forest, Auburn At Tennessee, Notre Dame At Pittsburgh, Virginia Tech At Miami, Nebraska At Michigan, More

LSU at Alabama plus 11 other game previews and picks against spread.
  By Brad Carroll  
The biggest cheer didn't come from Stanford supporters when the Cardinal held on for a 26-20 victory over No. 3 Oregon Thursday night. It came from the Florida State and Ohio State followers. The Ducks' loss to Stanford smashed the door open for the Seminoles and Buckeyes to solidify the second and third spots in the BCS standings, with Florida State holding the edge on Ohio State.

Oregon's loss eliminated it from the national championship picture, as it suffered its first loss of the season. Stanford keeps its slim title hopes alive as well with the win. If a one-loss team somehow is good enough to move into the top 2 in the BCS, the Cardinal should be the team that gets the national title call.

But make no mistake, the biggest winners Thursday night, besides Baylor, was undefeated Florida State and Ohio State. Those Bears had a huge win as well, routing Oklahoma 41-12 for the biggest victory in the history of the program. Baylor should jump Stanford in the standings, even with the Cardinal's victory.

GameDay Live Football Scoring:
No. 6 Glastonbury At New Britain

 (6) Glastonbury 34, New Britain 6
(6) Glastonbury                       0   7   20   7   -   34
New Britain                             0   0     0   6   -    6

: New Britain's Kyshawn Gunn scores on a 77-yard run.

GameDay Live Football Scoring:
No. 25 Bristol Eastern
At No. 20 Farmington

 (20) Farmington 20, (25) Eastern 15
(25) Bristol Eastern               6     3   0   6   -   15
(20) Farmington                     0   13   7   0   -   20

: Bristol Eastern's Gerry Ouellette scores on a 6-yard run.

GameDay Live Football Scoring:
East Hartford At No. 13 Southington

 (13) Southington 55, East Hartford 20
East Hartford                           0    7    0   13   -   20
(13) Southington                    14   34   7    0    -   55

: East Hartford's Kendrick Cruz scores on a 10-yard pass from Griffin Michalek.