|Date||Match Up||Rating||Score||Result||Profit||Lead Time||Analysis|
|11-30-19||Rutgers +41 v. Penn State||6-27||Win||100||16 h 33 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Undervalued Underdog on Rutgers +41
This is the ultimate flat spot for the Penn State Nittany Lions. They just lost a grueling 17-28 game at Ohio State with the Big Ten East title on the line. After losing that game, the Nittany Lions could care less about beating Rutgers by any kind of margin this week. And unless they are giving 100%, they aren’t going to cover this massive 41-point spread.
Not to mention, Penn State QB Sean Clifford was knocked out of the Ohio State game with a leg injury and is questionable to play Saturday. Look for the Nittany Lions to pull their starters in the second half of this game and to just try and get out of here with a win rather than looking to run up the score.
Rutgers will be looking at this game like its Super Bowl. And the Scarlet Knights have been more competitive here down the stretch. They beat Liberty outright as 7.5-point dogs, they covered as 51.5-point dogs in a 21-56 loss to Ohio State, and they lost 27-0 to Michigan State last week. They haven’t quit, and they will be trying to give Penn State all they can handle Saturday.
Rutgers hasn’t lost by more than 39 to Penn State since joining the Big Ten in 2014. They only lost 20-7 last year as 28.5-point dogs. They covered as 31-point dogs in 2017 in a 35-6 loss. They lost 39-0 in 2016 and 28-3 in 2015. They covered as 3.5-point dogs in a 13-10 loss in 2014. Don’t expect the Scarlet Knights to lose by 41-plus points for the first time against Penn State this week.
Penn State has actually been outgained in six of its 11 games this season, so it is nowhere near as good as its 9-2 record would indicate. The Nittany Lions are 0-4 ATS in their last four home games. James Franklin is 3-15 ATS off a loss as the coach of Penn State. He hasn’t been good at getting his team to respond following a defeat. And he certainly has his hands full getting his players to show up this week after losing to Ohio State last week. Bet Rutgers Saturday.
|11-30-19||New Mexico State +14.5 v. Liberty||28-49||Loss||-105||14 h 3 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Non-Conference KNOCKOUT on New Mexico State +14.5
The New Mexico State Aggies lost their first nine games of the season against an absolutely brutal schedule. They schedule finally eased up, and they were able to pick up back-to-back wins over Incarnate Word 41-28 as 8-point favorites and UTEP 44-35 as 7-point favorites. They have shown some fight here down the stretch, and they’ll certainly show up here against Liberty.
This is quickly becoming a rivalry because these teams have played twice a year each of the last two years since they both don’t have a conference as Independents. Each of the three meetings over the last two seasons have been decided by 8 points or less. New Mexico State wants revenge from a 13-20 home loss to Liberty in a game they deserved to win, but lost the turnover battle 3-0. They outgained Liberty 396 to 337 in that contest.
Liberty has benefited from playing one of the easiest schedules in the country. They have played the 127th schedule compared to the 96th schedule for New Mexico State. And after finally facing some decent teams in BYU and Virginia, losing by 28 to Virginia last week, I just can’t see Liberty being all that motivated this week to beat NMSU for a second time. They are already bowl eligible at 6-5 this season.
Plays on road teams (New Mexico State) - after gaining 225 or more rushing yards in two straight games against an opponent that was outrushed by 125 or more yards last game are 55-25 (68.8%) ATS over the last five seasons. The Aggies are simply catching too many points here. Take New Mexico State Saturday.
|11-30-19||Ohio State v. Michigan +9.5||Top||56-27||Loss||-110||14 h 22 m||Show|
25* College Football GAME OF THE YEAR on Michigan +9.5
The Michigan Wolverines turned their season around in the second half against Penn State, coming back from a 21-0 deficit and coming a dropped pass away from sending that game to overtime. They really deserved to win that game as they outgunned the Nittany Lions by 124 yards. In fact, the Wolverines have outgained 10 of their 11 opponents this season. I think they’re every bit as good as Ohio State right now, and it will show on the field Saturday.
The Wolverines came back the next week after the Penn State loss and crushed a very good Notre Dame team 45-14 at home. They outgained the Fighting Irish by 257 yards in the win, so there was nothing fluky about it. They went on to beat Maryland 38-7 and Michigan State 44-10. And last week, I actually faded Michigan and took Indiana thinking it was a sandwich spot. It wasn’t, and the Wolverines remained focused and handled their business in a 39-14 win as 10-point favorites.
Ohio State has been grossly overvalued here down the stretch after a great start to the season against a soft schedule. The Buckeyes failed to cover as 52-point favorites in a 56-21 win at Rutgers. And last week they found themselves fighting Penn State tooth and nail at home, pulling out the eventual 28-17l win as 20-point favorites.
Ohio State QB Justin Fields suffered an ankle injury in that Penn State game that hampered him and will continue to slow him this week. That’s a huge advantage for this Michigan defense as he won’t be the dual-threat he usually would be. And stopping the run is the key to stopping Ohio State as Fields is suspect as a passer.
The Wolverines have the clear answer for Ohio State’s rushing attack. Michigan allows just 106 rushing yards per game and 2.8 per carry. They are holding opponents to 68 rushing yards per game and 1.7 per carry less than their season averages. They have one of the best run defenses in the country. And while Michigan is almost fully healthy with only two players on the injury report, Ohio State has a plethora of injuries with 13 players on the injury report and a ton with a questionable tag.
Michigan QB Shea Patterson has taken his game to the next level this season and is capable out out dueling Fields in this one. He is completing 59.5% of his passes for 2,523 yards with a 21-to-5 TD/INT ratio this season while averaging 8.4 yards per attempt. And Patterson has been really good during the current four-game winning streak with all four wins by 25 points or more and the offense averaging 41.5 points per game He has a 12-to-1 ratio in his last four games.
Michigan wants this game like blood. The Wolverines have lost seven straight in this series to Ohio State. Jim Harbaugh was brought in here to beat Ohio State, and it’s time in Year 4. I think this is the perfect spot to do so, and he finally has the team to get it done. The game doesn’t mean as much for the Buckeyes, who clinched the Big Ten East division last year. They could lose this game and still win the Big Ten title next week against Wisconsin or Minnesota and make the four-team playoff. A loss won’t keep them out. This is Michigan’s Super Bowl.
Plays on underdogs of 3.5 to 10 points (Michigan) - in a game involving two dominant teams who are outgaining their opponents by 1.2 or more yards per play, after gaining 450 or more total yards in two straight games are 38-13 (74.5%) ATS over the last five seasons.
Michigan is 6-0 ATS in home games vs. good offensive teams that score 31 or more points per game over the last three seasons. Jim Harbaugh is 10-1 ATS vs. excellent rushing defensive that allow 2.75 or fewer yards per carry in all games as a head coach. Harbaugh is 9-2 ATS vs. excellent rushing teams that average 5.25 or more yards per carry as the coach of Michigan. The Wolverines are 7-1 ATS in their last eight games overall. Bet Michigan Saturday.
|11-30-19||Florida International v. Marshall -7.5||27-30||Loss||-110||12 h 3 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday No-Doubt Rout on Marshall -7.5
The Marshall Thundering Herd are still playing to try and win C-USA’s East Division. They need a win and a Florida Atlantic loss to Southern Miss this week to get in. They have the tiebreaker over both FAU and Western Kentucky. And it’s Senior Day, so they’ll be max motivated.
The same cannot be said for Florida International. They just clinched their 6th win and bowl eligibility last week. They did so by beating big brother Miami outright as a 21-point underdog. I think they will be partying all week and won’t care at all about this game. It’s a massive letdown spot for the Golden Panthers.
FIU is 0-4 SU & 0-4 ATS in true road games this season and losing by 23 points per game. They lost by 28 at Tulane, by 12 at LA Tech, by 33 at Middle Tennessee and by 30 at Florida Atlantic. Marshall is 5-1 at home this season with their only loss coming to 10-2 Cincinnati.
The Golden Panthers are 0-4 ATS in their last four conference games. The Thundering Herd are 17-5-2 ATS in their last 24 home games vs. a team with a winning record. Roll with Marshall Saturday.
|11-29-19||Iowa v. Nebraska +6||Top||27-24||Win||100||28 h 36 m||Show|
20* Iowa/Nebraska Big Ten No-Brainer on Nebraska +6
The Nebraska Cornhuskers are the single-most underrated 5-6 or worse team in the country. The betting public wants nothing to do with them after they burned through their money betting on them; the Huskers are just 2-9 ATS this season. And I think we are ‘buying low’ on the Huskers, who were 7-point favorites over the Hawkeyes in this game entering the season. Now they are 6-point underdogs on game day.
Nebraska has actually seven of its last 10 opponents despite going 4-6 SU. The only exceptions were a home game against Ohio State, and road losses to Purdue and Minnesota. And Adrian Martinez hasn’t been healthy all season, but he is back to 100% now and playing well. I’ve been very impressed with what I’ve seen from Nebraska the last two weeks.
Indeed, the Huskers outgained Wisconsin by 11 yards but lost despite gaining 493 total yards on Wisconsin’s vaunted defense. Then they went into Maryland and won 54-7 last week and outgained them by 325 yards. The Huskers are getting their running game going, rushing for 273 yards on Wisconsin and 305 yards on Maryland.
The fact that Nebraska has been running the football well of late and on the season is important because they will need to run on Iowa because the weather report is calling for some rain. Nebraska is rushing for 207 yards per game and 4.7 per carry this season. Iowa has the worst rushing attack it has had in years. The Hawkeyes only average 132 rushing yards per game and 3.7 per carry on the season. And QB Nathan Stanley has taken a step back this year to really hurt his draft stock.
Iowa just played Wisconsin a few weeks ago and only lost 22-24. However, they had a huge comeback in the 4th quarter that made that game look closer than the final score. The Hawkeyes were outgained by 178 yards by the Badgers. Iowa went on to get lucky to beat Minnesota 23-19 the next week despite getting outgained by 141 yards by the Gophers. And last week the Hawkeyes only outgained a bad Illinois team by 51 yards in a 19-10 home win as 15-point favorites.
So, as you can see, Nebraska is the better team when you compare stats against common opponents. Nebraska outgained Wisconsin while Iowa was outgained by 178 yards by the Badgers. And Nebraska outgained Illinois by 391 yards while Iowa only outgained Illinois by 51 yards. Iowa has a putrid offense that is averaging just 19.4 points per game in Big Ten play. They can’t be trusted to lay this number on the road.
While Iowa will be motivated for this rivalry game, Nebraska will clearly be the more motivated team. Scott Frost wants to get his team to a bowl game in Year 2 and finish the season strong. The Huskers also want revenge from a 28-31 road loss at Iowa as 8.5-point dogs. Iowa won on a last-second field goal. I strongly believe the wrong team is favored in this matchup.
Nebraska is 30-13 ATS in its last 43 games after failing to cover the spread in four or five of its last six games coming in. The Huskers desperately want to end a four-game losing streak to the Hawkeyes in this series, and I think they get the job done at home this week. Take Nebraska Friday.
|11-29-19||Toledo v. Central Michigan -10||Top||7-49||Win||100||25 h 5 m||Show|
25* MAC GAME OF THE YEAR on Central Michigan -10
The Central Michigan Chippewas can clinch the MAC West title with a win Friday. Western Michigan lost to Northern Illinois on Tuesday to allow the Chippewas to have this opportunity, and I expect them to take full advantage with a blowout win over Toledo Friday.
Central Michigan has been underrated all season, and that’s evident with their 8-3 ATS record this year. They have been the most dominant team in the MAC. They are 5-2 SU & 5-2 ATS in MAC play this season, outgaining opponents by 150 yards per game and 1.8 yards per play. They are averaging 509.3 yards per game in MAC play and giving up 359.4 yards per game.
Not to mention, the Chippewas have two full weeks to get ready for Toledo after having a bye last week. Meanwhile, Toledo played last week against Buffalo, and while they will have a few extra days of rest than normal they are still at a disadvantage.
While I love the motivation for Central Michigan, I hate the motivational spot for Toledo. The Rockets have already clinched a bowl with a 6-5 record this season. And after losing at home to NIU 28-31, their hopes of winning the MAC West were crushed. They went on to lose 30-49 at Buffalo last week in a game that wasn’t even as close as that final score showed. Now it will be more of the same against Central Michigan.
Toledo has one of the worst defenses in the country. They are giving up 468.7 yards per game this season, including 464.9 yards per game in MAC play. The Rockets have been dreadful on the road, going 1-4 SU & 0-5 ATS while getting outscored by 15.6 points per game and outgained by 125 yards per game. They are giving up a whopping 524.8 yards per game on the road this season.
Conversely, Central Michigan is 5-0 SU & 5-0 ATS at home this season, outscoring opponents by 23.2 points per game and outgaining them by 251 yards per game. They are averaging 550 yards per game of offense at home and only giving up 298.6 yards per game. They beat Northern Illinois 48-10 in their last home game, the same NIU team that beat Toledo on the road and Western Michigan on the road each for he last two weeks.
And perhaps the most important part about this handicap is that Toledo could be without its top two quarterbacks. Mitchell Guadagni has missed the past five games and is unlikely to return. And backup Eli Peters was knocked out of the Buffalo game last week and is questionable to play. The good news is that even if one of them plays, I still love Central Michigan, and if they don’t play they have no chance of even being competitive.
Toledo is 0-7 ATS after going over the total in two straight games over the last two seasons. Central Michigan is 7-0 ATS in its last seven home games after scoring 42 points or more last game. The Rockets are 0-5 ATS in their last five road games. The Chippewas are 5-0 ATS in their last five home games. These four trends combine for a perfect 24-0 system backing the Chippewas. Bet Central Michigan Friday.
|11-29-19||Bowling Green v. Buffalo -28||7-49||Win||100||25 h 1 m||Show|
15* CFB Friday Early ANNIHILATOR on Buffalo -28
The Buffalo Bulls are the far superior team in this matchup with Bowling Green. So while I rarely lay this big of a number in any sport, I’m going to lay the number with the Bulls Friday. They should win by more than four touchdowns against a Bowling Green team that looks like they’ve quit.
Buffalo sits at 6-5 this season and playing some tremendous football down the stretch. The Bulls are 4-1 SU & 4-1 ATS in their last five games overall. They beat Akron 21-0 as 18-point road favorites, beat Central Michigan 43-20 as 2.5-point home favorites, won at Eastern Michigan 43-14 as 1.5-point favorites, and crushed Toledo 49-30 at home as 10-point favorites. Their lone loss came at Kent State after they blew a 27-6 lead in the 4th quarter in fluky fashion, giving up 24 points in the final eight minutes.
Bowling Green lost at Miami Ohio 3-44 two weeks ago and came back to lose 24-66 at home to Ohio last week. The Falcons sit at 3-8 on the season and have clearly quit. In fact, seven of those eight losses came by 28 points or more, so they are used to getting blown out by big margins. And their three wins have come against Morgan State, Akron and Toledo.
The key with Bowling Green is that they have been respectable at home, but atrocious on the road. The Falcons are 0-5 SU & 0-5 ATS in road games this season, getting outscored by a whopping 45.2 points per game. They are scoring just 6.6 points per game on 253.8 yards per game on the highway, and allowing 51.8 points per game and 568.6 yards per game.
Buffalo beat Bowling Green 44-14 on the road last season as 16-point favorites. They gained 483 yards and only allowed 205 yards, outgaining the Falcons by 278 yards. Expect more of the same at Buffalo this time around as the Bulls are 4-1 SU & 4-1 ATS at home this season with their only loss coming to Ohio by a single point.
The Falcons are 1-8 ATS in their last nine games as underdogs. Bowling Green is 2-10 ATS in their last 12 vs. a team with a winning record. Buffalo is 10-1 ATS in home games after the first month of the season over the last three seasons. Bowling Green is 1-9 ATS off a home game over the last two seasons. The Falcons are 0-6 ATS in their last six road games vs. a team with a winning home record. Roll with Buffalo Friday.
|11-28-19||Ole Miss +2.5 v. Mississippi State||Top||20-21||Win||100||28 h 6 m||Show|
20* Ole Miss/Mississippi State ESPN No-Brainer on Ole Miss +2.5
The Ole Miss Rebels somehow were able to get a bye week before playing their biggest game of the season in the Egg Bowl against Mississippi State. Meanwhile, the Bulldogs had to play Saturday against Abilene Christian and now will be on a short week. That edge in rest and preparation is a huge advantage for the Rebels this week.
Ole Miss has been grossly undervalued in the entire second half of the season. The Rebels are 6-1 ATS in their last seven games overall. They have exceeded expectations despite playing a brutal schedule. And ever since dual-threat QB John Rhys Plumlee took over, this Ole Miss offense has flourished. Plumlee has rushed for 989 yards and 11 touchdowns while averaging 7.3 per carry against mostly very good defenses.
The Rebels have had their best offensive performance last time out against a very good LSU defense. The managed 614 total yards and 37 points against LSU. They had 606 total yards against New Mexico State the game before and covered as 28-point favorites in a 41-3 win. They only lost 14-20 at Auburn as 17-point dogs. They deserved to beat Texas A&M but lost 17-24 at home despite outgaining them by 65 yards. They gave Missouri a battle in a 27-38 road loss. They crushed Vanderbilt 31-6 as 7-point home favorites. And they were only outgained by 98 yards at Alabama and put up 31 points and 476 total yards on their defense.
This is going to be Ole Miss’ Super Bowl. They won’t be going to a bowl game at 4-7 this season. But they have a chance to knock Mississippi State (5-6) out of a bowl game. The Bulldogs have been one of the most overrated teams in the country this season as they are just 4-7 ATS with their only covers coming in wins over Southern Miss, Kentucky, Arkansas and Abilene Christian. They really haven’t beaten anyone good.
These teams have five common opponents this season. Ole Miss is 1-4 SU & 4-1 ATS against them while only getting outscored by 9.6 points per game and outgained by 0.8 yards per play. Mississippi State is 1-4 SU & 1-4 ATS against those same five opponents, getting outscored by 15.2 points per game and outgained by 1.3 yards per play. These common opponent stats show Ole Miss is the better team, and we’re getting them as an underdog in a favorable rest spot off the bye.
Plays against home teams where the line is +3 to -3 (Mississippi State) - after outrushing opponent by 200 or more yards last game against opponent that gained 5.5 or more yards per attempt last game are 29-7 (80.6%) ATS over the last 10 seasons. Ole Miss is 6-1 ATS in its last seven conference games. Mississippi State is 1-5 SU & 1-5 ATS in its last six conference games. Take Ole Miss Thursday.
|11-26-19||Ohio v. Akron +28||52-3||Loss||-106||7 h 9 m||Show|
15* MAC PLAY OF THE DAY on Akron +28
The Akron Zips are 0-11 SU & 1-10 ATS this season. The betting public wants nothing to do with them, and we are getting them at a huge discount this week. We’re getting the Zips as four-touchdown home underdogs on Senior Night in a game I know they are going to be max motivated to get their first win of the year.
I cashed in Akron last week as 31.5-point underdogs at Miami (Ohio). They only lost that game 17-20 and had the ball with a chance to win late in the fourth quarter. That’s a Miami (Ohio) team that will be going to the MAC Championship.
Ohio has been overrated all season because they were a popular pick to win the MAC this year. The Bobcats are just 5-6 SU & 3-8 ATS this season. They have a good quarterback in Nathan Rourke, but the rest of their team has a lot of problems.
Akron actually has the better defense in this matchup. The Zips are giving up 396.7 yards per game and 5.5 yards per play on the season. Ohio is allowing 431.3 yards per game and 6.2 yards per play on the year. I don’t think the Bobcats should be favored by four touchdowns on the road with the worse defense.
Akron’s offense has not been good, obviously, but they have been better with QB Kato Nelson under center. He has 11 touchdowns against six interceptions and is a dual-threat who can escape pressure. This offense has been a lot more effective in the games he didn’t miss with injury.
Four of the last five meetings in this series have been decided by 6 points or less. The lone exception was last year with a very good Ohio team winning 49-28 at home against Akron as 24-point favorites. Now the Bobcats are favored by 28 on the road this time around and they aren’t nearly as good as they were last year.
Ohio is 1-7 ATS as a favorite this season. The Bobcats are 3-12 ATS in their last 15 games after scoring 50 points or more in their previous game. Frank Solich is 1-8 ATS in road games after a game where they forced four or more turnovers as the coach of Ohio. Their game against Bowling Green was much closer than the final score showed last week, so we’re getting extra line value here because of it. Take Akron Tuesday.
|11-23-19||Nevada +14 v. Fresno State||35-28||Win||100||47 h 33 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Late-Night BAILOUT on Nevada +14
We’ve made a lot of money fading Fresno State this year, and we’ll continue to do so tonight. The Bulldogs came into the season way overvalued due to being the best covering team in the nation the previous two years. But they only returned eight starters and it was a clear rebuilding year, yet the Bulldogs have been priced like the team they were the previous two seasons. And it continues to be the case week after week.
Fresno State is just 4-6 SU & 3-6-1 ATS this season. Three of their four wins came by 14 points or less, and yet they are laying 14 points here to a Nevada team that is better than all four teams they’ve beaten outside of Hawaii, which they only beat on a last-second field goal. Fresno has a win over Sacramento State by 14 as 24.5-point favorites, a win over New Mexico State by 13 as 21-point favorites and a win over UNLV as 16.5-point favorites.
Plus, Nevada is a 6-4 team that is coming off a bye week and will be fresh and ready to go. The Wolf Pack have done a good job of turning their season around by winning and covering against New Mexico at home and pulling the 17-13 upset at San Diego State as 17.5-point dogs in their last two games coming in. Now they carry that momentum into Fresno State this weekend.
Fresno State has been outgained in five of its last six games. The only exception was the 75 yards they outgained UNLV by in a very misleading 56-27 win. They were outgained by 153 yards in a 24-43 loss at Air Force, by 112 yards in a 31-41 home loss to Colorado State as 13.5-point favorites, by 41 yards in their 3-point win over Hawaii, by 106 yards in their 35-37 upset home loss to Utah State and by 219 yards in their 7-17 loss at San Diego State last week.
Fresno State had one of the best defenses in the country last year, but that has been far from the case this year. The Bulldogs are giving up 33.8 points and 473.3 yards per game in Mountain West play this season. This is a pretty bad conference, and they just gave up 425 yards to a bad San Diego State offense last week. They had allowed 500-plus yards in three straight games prior to that SDSU game as well. The back door will always be open for Nevada if needed, but I don’t think it will be needed. The road team is 7-1 ATS in the last eight meetings. Bet Nevada Saturday.
|11-23-19||California v. Stanford -1.5||24-20||Loss||-110||40 h 3 m||Show|
15* Pac-12 PLAY OF THE DAY on Stanford -1.5
Stanford sits at 4-6 on the season. The Cardinal need two more wins to get to a bowl game. That’s important to them because they have a 10-year bowl streak alive and haven’t missed a bowl since the 2008 season. And they certainly don’t want their season to come to an end at the hands of their biggest rival in Cal.
Stanford is 9-0 SU & 7-2 ATS in its last nine meetings with California. And now the Cardinal just have to win this game at home to cover as only 1.5-point favorites. I believe this is a gift from oddsmakers because despite having a down year, Stanford is still better than Cal this season.
Injuries have hurt the Cardinal this season, but they have found their QB moving forward in Davis Mills. He threw for a school-record 504 yards against Washington State last week. He is completing 65% of his passes for 1,394 yards with an 8-to-3 TD/INT ratio on the season and is averaging 8.7 per attempt. He has actually been better than starter KJ Costello, and certainly better than their third-stringer, who was forced into action earlier this season.
Mills led the 23-13 win over Washington, and he also led the win at Oregon State. He just made his first start last week since that win over Washington back on September 5th. I think the Cardinal’s record would be better if he started every game this year. Cal just gave up 406 passing yards last week in a 17-41 loss to USC a week after giving up 407 passing yards to Washington State. It’s clear you can throw on this Cal defense, and Mills will exploit it.
Cal starting QB Chase Garbers just hasn’t been able to stay healthy, either. He was knocked out of the loss to USC last week with a shoulder injury, and he’s questionable to play this week. Backup Devin Monster has been awful in his place, completing just 50.8% of his passes with a 5-to-5 TD/INT ratio and 5.8 per attempt. Garbers is at 57.6% with an 8-to-2 ratio and 7.9 per attempt, so it’s a big downgrade if Modster gets the start.
This is a Cal offense that is one of the worst in the country. The Bears only average 18.9 points and 304.0 yards per game on the season, including 13.7 points and 268.7 yards per game on the road. The Bears are 2-5 in conference play and scoring just 15.9 points per game while averaging 265.4 yards per game and 4.4 per play. That’s another reason they shouldn’t be getting this much respect from oddsmakers. Roll with Stanford Saturday.
|11-23-19||Nebraska -4.5 v. Maryland||54-7||Win||100||40 h 44 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday No-Doubt Rout on Nebraska -4.5
Despite having a disastrous season up to this point, the Nebraska Cornhuskers sit at 4-6 on the season and still within reach of a bowl game. You can bet Scott Frost doesn’t want the embarrassment of missing out on a bowl again, and he’ll have his players ready to go Saturday in Maryland.
Conversely, Maryland just suffered its seventh loss of the season and sits at 3-7 on the year. The Terrapins know they won’t be going to a bowl game, and I question their motivation. This team has rarely even been competitive in Big Ten play this season. The Terrapins are 1-6 SU & 2-5 ATS in Big Ten action, getting outscored by 26.0 points per game. They are a disaster right now, and head coach Mike Locksley is in trouble.
It’s time to ‘buy low’ on Nebraska, which is 1-9 ATS in its 10 games this season while burning the betting public week after week. They want nothing to do with this team now. But it’s pretty easy to see the Huskers are better than their 4-6 record as they have continually blown lead after lead and cover after cover in the second half of games this season. I don’t expect this game to even be close to give them a chance to blow it.
Nebraska has actually outgained six of its last nine opponents with the only exceptions being a home game against Ohio State, and road losses to Purdue and Minnesota. They actually outgained Wisconsin by 11 yards last week despite losing 21-37. Their offense racked up 493 total yards on Wisconsin’s vaunted defense with 273 rushing and 220 passing. Adrian Martinez is back to 100% healthy, and this offense should continue to flourish the final two weeks of the season.
Maryland’s offense has been held to just 17.3 points and 283.7 yards per game in conference play this season, including 10.3 points and 194.0 yards per game in their last three. I just don’t think they can be trusted to score at all and keep up with Nebraska’s high-powered offense. Not to mention, the Terrapins are giving up 43.3 points and 504.9 yards per game in Big Ten play. With those numbers, you can see we are getting Nebraska at a discount this week.
The Huskers are 7-3-1 ATS in their last 11 road games vs. a team with a losing home record. The Terrapins are 3-11 ATS in their last 14 games off a bye week. Maryland is 1-6 ATS in its last seven November games. I’m not concerned about Maryland coming off a bye because their season is over and they aren’t excited at all about this game. Nebraska just had a bye prior to Wisconsin and will still be fresh and ready to go. Take Nebraska Saturday.
|11-23-19||Western Kentucky v. Southern Miss -3.5||Top||28-10||Loss||-110||40 h 34 m||Show|
20* CFB BLOWOUT GAME OF THE MONTH on Southern Miss -3.5
I believe Southern Miss is a better team than Western Kentucky this year. But that’s only part of the handicap. A big part of the handicap is that Southern Miss is still alive for a Conference USA title, while Western Kentucky is not. And thus the Golden Eagles have the motivational advantage coming into this one.
Southern Miss is tied for first place in the C-USA West with LA Tech at 5-1 within the conference. But the Golden Eagles lost to LA Tech, so they don’t hold the tiebreaker. However, they got a huge break when LA Tech had its QB and Top WR suspended last week and this week. After losing to Marshall badly last week, LA Tech now travels to face UAB this week and is nearly a 7-point underdog. Chances are LA Tech loses that game, meaning a win for Southern Miss would put them in first place in the C-USA West.
Western Kentucky is 4-2 within the conference. They trail both Marshall (5-1) and Florida Atlantic (5-1). The problem is that WKU lost to both of those teams, thus they are essentially two games back in the division. They essentially have no chance of winning C-USA East now and thus don’t have much to play for. They are already bowl eligible, which is a nice accomplishment in itself after what this program has gone through the last few seasons.
Southern Miss is the real deal this season. It is 7-3 this year with its only losses all coming on the road to Alabama, Mississippi State and LA Tech. This despite facing a brutal schedule with only five home games this season compared to seven road games. The Eagles are 4-0 SU & 3-1 ATS at home this season, outscoring opponents by 24.7 points per game and outgaining them by 181 yards per game.
Western Kentucky is starting to get too much respect from oddsmakers after going 6-1 ATS in its last seven games overall and upsetting Arkansas last time out on the road. But against the two best teams they have faced in C-USA, they lost on the road to Marshall and at home to FAU by 11. All of their wins have come against suspect competition, and they also lost to Central Arkansas.
The Golden Eagles are 4-1 ATS in their last five conference games. Southern Miss is 7-1 ATS in its last eight November games. And these teams have one common opponent in UAB. WKU beat UAB 20-13 at home, while Southern Miss crushed UAB 37-2 at home. Roll with Southern Miss Saturday.
|11-23-19||Michigan v. Indiana +10||Top||39-14||Loss||-110||40 h 34 m||Show|
20* Big Ten GAME OF THE MONTH on Indiana +10
This is the ultimate sandwich spot for the Michigan Wolverines. They are coming off a huge win over their second-biggest rival in Michigan State. And next week they play their biggest rival in Ohio State. This is the game that they are likely to come out flat in as they won’t be up emotionally to face Indiana at all.
But the Hoosiers are no longer the easy pushovers they used to be. They are 7-3 this season with two of their losses coming on the road to Michigan State (by 9) and Penn State (by 7), covering the spread in both games as 14 and 15-point dogs, respectively. Their only blowout loss this season came to Ohio State, which is arguably the best team in the country.
Michigan is starting to get too much respect from oddsmakers after covering four straight and six of its last seven. The oddsmakers are over adjusting here for it by making them double-digit road favorites. If this was a normal game, this line would be high as it is. But the fact that it’s a sandwich spot for Michigan is not being factored into the line.
Indiana outgained Penn State by 91 yards on the road last week and probably deserved to win. QB Peyton Ramsey has been playing some tremendous football in place of the injured Michael Penix Jr. Ramsey is completing 72.7% of his passes for 1,673 yards with a 10-to-3 TD/INT ratio and averaging 8.4 yards per attempt. He will be able to move the football on this Michigan defense.
Indiana has played Michigan really tough the last few years. Indeed, the Hoosiers are 3-0-1 ATS in the last four meetings. And despite being 0-4 SU, all four losses came by 11 points or less, including two in overtime. You can bet the Hoosiers want to end their long losing streak to the Wolverines and will be highly motivated to do so. And I think they finally have the team capable of pulling off the upset as they are complete on both sides of the football this year and showing some tremendous fight against good competition. This is their Super Bowl on Senior Day.
Plays against any team (Michigan) - after beating the spread by 49 or more points total in their last five games, a top-level team winning at least 80% of their games playing a good team that wins 60% to 80% are 46-17 (73%) ATS over the last five seasons.
Michigan is 4-17 ATS in its last 21 games after scoring 31 points or more in three straight games. Indiana is 11-2 ATS in its last 13 games after having won four of its last five games. The Wolverines are 3-8 ATS in their last 11 road games. The Hoosiers are 6-1 ATS in their last seven vs. a team with a winning record. Indiana is 6-1 ATS in its last seven games overall. Take Indiana Saturday.
|11-23-19||Boston College +20.5 v. Notre Dame||Top||7-40||Loss||-107||55 h 44 m||Show|
20* CFB Non-Conference GAME OF THE MONTH on Boston College +20.5
Boston College needs one more win to get bowl eligible. They sit at 5-5 on the season and have two road games left at Notre Dame & Pitt. It won’t be easy as they’ll need to pull an upset to get bowl eligible for the 6th time in seven seasons under Steve Addazio.
The Eagles are in a great spot coming off their bye with two weeks to prepare for Notre Dame. They are better than their 5-5 record as they have gone 1-3 in games decided by 7 points or less. Their offense is really hitting on all cylinders right now. The Eagles have gained 500-plus yards in five of their last six games coming in.
Boston College is one of the best rushing teams in the country, averaging 282 rushing yards per game and 5.3 per carry. Notre Dame’s weakness has been stopping the run as they have given up 200-plus rushing yards four times this season and are allowing 169 rushing yards per game overall.
I had Notre Dame last week against Navy as I thought the 7-point spread was too short. And Notre Dame rolled to a 52-20 victory. But Navy rushed for 281 yards on them and gave the game away with four turnovers. And now Notre Dame will have to face a physical running team two weeks in a row.
Notre Dame is 4-11 ATS the week after facing Navy the last 15 years. It’s clear playing Navy takes a toll on them the next week. Boston College’s offensive line is better than Notre Dame’s defensive line, and that’s why the Eagles have a chance to keep this one close. That’s the key matchup in this game that is in Boston College’s favor.
Addazio is 15-5 ATS as a road underdog as the coach of Boston College. Notre Dame is 2-12 ATS in its last 14 games after leading its last two games by 14-plus points at halftime. The Eagles are 4-0 ATS in their last four games following a loss. Boston College is 20-8 ATS in its last 28 road games. The Eagles are 5-1 ATS in their last six trips to Notre Dame. Bet Boston College Saturday.
|11-23-19||Minnesota v. Northwestern +14||38-22||Loss||-110||36 h 3 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Early ANNIHILATOR on Northwestern +14
I love fading Minnesota in this spot. The Golden Gophers just had their dreams of making the four-team playoff crushed with their loss to Iowa last week and their unbeaten season is over. Teams usually struggle to rebound following such a devastating loss, and many times it’s the kind of loss that beats a team twice. We’re just asking Minnesota not to win by more than two touchdowns this week, though.
Another reason Minnesota has no incentive to show up this week is because the result of this game means nothing. They could lose this game and beat Wisconsin next week and get to the Big Ten Championship Game. They could beat Northwestern this week, but they’d still have to beat Wisconsin next week to get to the title game. Essentially, this game means nothing in the grand scheme of things.
I am fairly certain this game means more to Northwestern. It’s their Super Bowl getting to face a Top 25 team at home. And It’s Senior Day, so you know the Wildcats will want to send their seniors out a winner. Pat Fitzgerald is one of the best motivators in college football, and his teams show up almost every week as a result. They will give the Gophers more of a fight than they bargained for this weekend.
A big reason Northwestern’s record is so bad is because they have played the 24th-toughest schedule in the country. Minnesota has played the 60th-ranked schedule, which is 34 spots lower. And Northwestern has four losses this season by 10 points or less, so they haven’t fared well in close games. I think this one will go down to the wire as well given the terrible spot for the Gophers.
Minnesota star QB Tanner Morgan hasn’t been cleared from concussion protocol. He is worth a lot of points to the spread over a pair of freshmen backups who are battling to replace him in practice this week if need be. And this line has been bet from Minnesota -7 to Minnesota -14 throughout the week, indicating that Morgan will likely play. But if he doesn’t play, we have some tremendous value here. I think it’s a good bet whether he plays or not, and this line move is unwarranted.
Minnesota has only beaten Northwestern by more than 14 points one time in the last 12 meetings, making for an 11-1 system backing the Wildcats pertaining to this 14-point spread. The Wildcats are 25-6-1 ATS in their last 32 games after allowing less than 100 rushing yards in their previous game. The home team is 4-1 ATS in the last five meetings. Bet Northwestern Saturday.
|11-22-19||Colorado State +7 v. Wyoming||Top||7-17||Loss||-130||22 h 35 m||Show|
20* Colorado State/Wyoming ESPN 2 No-Brainer on Colorado State +7
The Colorado State Rams sit at 4-6 and in need of a win to keep their bowl hopes alive. That assures they’ll show up tonight at Wyoming, and I think they have a great chance to win this game outright.
The Rams have been grossly underrated after a slow start this season. They have gone 5-2 ATS in their last seven games overall and have outgained five of seven opponents despite going just 3-4 SU during this stretch. They have several misleading finals this season against some very good teams.
On September 21st, Colorado State lost 35-41 to Toledo despite outgaining them by 147 yards. They only lost 24-34 at Utah State their next game as 24-point dogs. They did lose 10-24 at home to San Diego State but were only outgained by 3 yards. They won 35-21 at New Mexico as 5-point favorites and outgained them by 206 yards. They pulled the 41-31 upset at Fresno as 13.5-point dogs and outgained them by 112 yards. They blew out UNLV 37-17 as 7.5-point home favorites.
Last week, Colorado State gave Air Force everything they wanted. And that’s an Air Force team that is arguably the best in the Mountain West. The Rams led 14-10 heading into the 4th quarter, but were outscored 28-7 in the final period. They were going in at the 1-yard line to make it a 3-point game in the final minutes, but threw a 99-yard INT returned for a TD. They wound up losing by 17 as 10.5-point dogs, which was one of the worst bad beats of the season. They outgained Air Force by 33 yards in the loss. I think that misleading final is creating extra line value for us on Colorado State this week.
Wyoming had a chance to win the Mountain West, but lost at Boise State two weeks ago. They also lost at Utah State last week and now have no chance to win the Mountain West. Sitting at 6-4 on the season, they are already bowl eligible and have little to play for. I certainly question their motivation tonight compared to that of Colorado State, which is still playing for a bowl.
Wyoming lost starting QB Sean Chambers a couple weeks ago to a season-ending knee injury. That was a huge blow because backup Tyler Vander Waal has been awful in his place. Vander Waal is completing just 52% of his passes with one touchdown and three interceptions while averaging only 5.7 yards per attempt. He also is not a runner, whereas Chambers was a dual-threat who had 567 yards and 10 touchdowns while averaging 6.3 per carry on the ground. Not having to defend that dual-threat makes Wyoming’s offense one of the worst in the country now with Vander Waal.
Colorado State boasts one of the best offenses that Wyoming will have faced this season. The Rams average 30.6 points and 460.5 yards per game on the season. Wyoming has faced one of the worst schedule of opposing offenses in the country as their opponents only average 22.9 points and 367 yards per game on the year. And Wyoming is probably the biggest fraud of any bowl eligible team in the country. The Cowboys have actually been outgained in eight of their 10 games this season despite their 6-4 record.
Plays against home favorites of 3.5 to 10 points (Wyoming) - after having lost two of their last three games, with a winning record on the season are 48-17 (73.8%) ATS over the last five seasons. Wyoming is 0-6 ATS after having lost two of its last three games over the last two seasons. Bet Colorado State Friday.
Note: Buy from +6.5 to +7 (-120)
|11-21-19||NC State +2 v. Georgia Tech||26-28||Push||0||11 h 44 m||Show|
15* NC State/Georgia Tech ESPN ANNIHILATOR on NC State +2
The NC State Wolfpack sit at 4-6 on the season. They have a lot more to play for tonight as they still have a chance to make a bowl game if they win out. And with a game on deck at home against rival UNC, they have a legitimate chance to win their final two games of the season. Wrong team favored here.
Yes, NC State is just 1-5 SU & 1-5 ATS in its last six games overall. But that’s why we are getting great value on the Wolfpack as underdogs to the worst team in the ACC in Georgia Tech tonight. And keep in mind those games were closer than the final scores. NC State outgained three of its six opponents during this 1-5 skid, including outgaining Louisville by 51 yards last week in a 20-34 loss.
Georgia Tech is every bit as bad as its 2-8 SU & 2-7-1 ATS record would indicate. The Yellow Jackets have been outgained in nine of their 10 games this season with the only exception being outgaining a bad Duke team by 6 yards. It’s a Georgia Tech team getting outgained by 121.7 yards per game on the season. To compare, NC State is still outgaining opponents by 6.3 yards per game on the season.
Plays on road underdogs (NC State) - after allowing 31 points or more in three straight games against an opponent that’s off a loss by 17 points or more are 64-27 (70.3%) ATS over the last 10 seasons. Georgia Tech is coming off a 45-0 home loss to Virginia Tech while getting held to just 134 total yards. Yet the Yellow Jackets are favored this week. Give me a break. Georgia Tech is 0-7 ATS in its last seven home games. The road team is 5-0-1 ATS in the last six meetings. Take NC State Thursday.
|11-20-19||Akron +32 v. Miami-OH||17-20||Win||100||8 h 28 m||Show|
15* MAC PLAY OF THE DAY on Akron +32
The Akron Zips are 0-10 SU & 0-10 ATS this season. The chances of them going 0-12 ATS for the entire season are slim to none. Oddsmakers are going to adjust knowing that the betting public wants to keep fading them because they haven’t covered yet. And I think they’ve adjusted too much tonight.
The Zips just recently got starting QB Kato Nelson back from injury. He threw for 288 yards and two touchdowns against Eastern Michigan last week while averaging 8.7 yards per attempt. That’s the same Eastern Michigan team that just rolled Northern Illinois 45-17 on the road last night.
I just don’t think Miami Ohio is going to be motivated enough to put away Akron by 31-plus points tonight. Miami Ohio already clinched the MAC East last week with their win over Bowling Green. They have the tiebreaker on their closest pursuers with head-to-head wins, and I think they will be flat tonight as a result. They would need to be fully invested to cover this big of a number as they only have one win all season that would cover 32 points.
Plays against favorites of 31.5 or more points (Miami Ohio) - off a home win, with a winning record on the season playing a losing team are 29-8 (78.4%) ATS over the last five seasons. The road team is 6-1 ATS in the last seven meetings. The Zips are 4-1 ATS in their last five trips to Miami Ohio. Take Akron Wednesday.
|11-19-19||Eastern Michigan v. Northern Illinois -5||Top||45-17||Loss||-105||10 h 31 m||Show|
20* MAC GAME OF THE WEEK on Northern Illinois -5
The Northern Illinois Huskies kept their bowl hopes alive last week with a huge 31-28 road win at Toledo to improve to 4-6 on the season. Now they have two home games to finish the season and have a legit chance of making a bowl. They need to handle their business here against Eastern Michigan to do so.
Eastern Michigan is 5-5 this season with a home game on deck next week against Kent State that they will be heavily favored in. They know they can afford to lose this game and still make a bowl. Sure, they want to beat Northern Illinois, but it’s not as urgent to win this game as it is for the Huskies.
I simply believe NIU is the better team despite having the worse record. The Huskies have played a brutal schedule this season with seven road games compared to three home games. And those seven road games featured non-conference games at Utah, Nebraska and Vanderbilt, as well as trips to four of the best teams in the MAC in Ohio, Miami, Central Michigan and Toledo. The Huskies are 2-1 SU & 2-1 ATS at home this season outscoring opponents by 18.7 points per game and holding foes to 12.3 points and 217.3 yards per game.
Common opponents are a great way to compare teams. These teams have faced the same four opponents. Eastern Michigan is 1-3 SU & 1-3 ATS against them, getting outscored by 1.7 points per game and outgained by 68.7 yards per game and 0.9 yards per play. Northern Illinois is 2-2 SU & 2-2 ATS against those four teams, outscoring them by 1.7 points per game and only getting outgained by 27.3 yards per game and 0.4 yards per play.
I like the matchup for NIU on both sides of the ball. Their weakness this season has been stopping the run, but EMU only averages 118 rushing yards per game and 3.7 per carry. NIU is great against the pass, giving up just 208 passing yards per game, and they’ll be able to slow down an EMU offense averaging 273 passing yards per game. NIU has topped 200 rushing yards in two of its last three games coming in and should be able to run the ball at will on an EMU defense that allows 194 rushing yards per game and 4.7 per carry. The Eagles have also been terrible against the pass, giving up 63.4% completions and 8.3 yards per attempt.
Northern Illinois is 11-0 SU & 7-3-1 ATS in its last 11 meetings with Eastern Michigan. The Huskies are 15-2 ATS in their last 17 games off an upset win as an underdog over a conference opponent. The Eagles are 2-14 ATS in their last 16 games off a win by more than 20 points. Eastern Michigan is 0-5 ATS in its last five games following an ATS win. Bet Northern Illinois Tuesday.
|11-16-19||UCLA +21.5 v. Utah||Top||3-49||Loss||-110||54 h 5 m||Show|
20* Pac-12 GAME OF THE WEEK on UCLA +21.5
The Utah Utes went into their bye week fat and happy after beating Washington on the road 33-28. Now they’ve had two weeks to get patted on the back after appearing in the Top 10 of the college football playoff rankings. I expect them to come out flat this week against UCLA.
And I just simply believe it’s time to ’sell high’ on the Utes after they have gone 5-0 SU & 5-0 ATS in their last five games overall. They are quickly becoming one of the most public teams in the country as the betting public keeps getting rewarded by backing them. I think that stops this weekend.
UCLA was left for dead after a 1-5 start this season. But we saw UCLA struggle in the first half of the season last year and play great in the 2nd half. The same thing has happened this year. UCLA has gone 3-0 SU & 3-0 ATS in their last three games to improve to 4-5 on the season.
They upset Stanford 34-16 as 4-point road dogs. They beat Arizona State 42-32 as 3.5-point road dogs in a game they led 42-10 going into the 4th quarter before pulling their starters and getting outscored 22-0 in the final period. And they dominated Colorado 31-14 as 6.5-point home favorites last time out.
Now the Bruins need to win two of their last three games to make a bowl game and will be ‘all in’ this week. Not to mention, a victory Saturday would move UCLA into a tie for first place in the Pac-12 South. The Bruins also come off their bye week, so this young team will only get better with the extra prep time.
Getting QB Dorian Thompson-Robinson back from injury has made all the difference for the Bruins. Being without him is the reason they lost to Arizona and Oregon State, or they’d have a better record than they do. And they have gotten power running back Joshua Kelley going. He has rushed for 466 yards and 7 touchdowns during their three-game winning streak.
In fact, the Bruins have rushed for at least 200 yards in five straight games for the first time since 1978. They are starting to play the way that Chip Kelly envisioned when he took over the program last year. Kelly is 14-1 ATS in road games after a game where his team committed one or fewer turnovers as a college football head coach. Bet UCLA Saturday.
|11-16-19||LSU v. Ole Miss +21.5||58-37||Win||100||34 h 55 m||Show|
15* LSU/Ole Miss ESPN No-Brainer on Ole Miss +21.5
This is an awful spot to back LSU. I’ve been backing LSU a lot this season, but I realize this is the worst spot they have been in all year. I’m going to fade them because of it and grab Ole Miss +21.5 at home to keep it within three touchdowns.
LSU is coming off a grueling, program-changing 46-41 win over Alabama last week on the road. They won’t have much left in the tank after that win, and they certainly won’t be fully focused for Ole Miss this week. They have been getting patted on the back all week with their No. 1 playoff ranking. It’s only human nature for these young players to have an emotional letdown off such a huge win. They probably think they just have to show up to win this week, but that won’t be the case.
Ole Miss made easy work of New Mexico State in a 41-3 victory as 28-point favorites last week. They got to rest their starters in the second half and save some energy for LSU this week, because they know they are going to need it. Sitting at 4-6 on the season, this is Ole Miss’ Super Bowl, a chance to knock off the No. 1 ranked team in the country. They will be more motivated in this game than any other game this season.
Ole Miss QB John Rhys Plumlee is one of the best-kept secrets in the country. The Ole Miss offense has been humming every since he took over at quarterback, and they can match LSU score for score with him at the helm. Plumlee has thrown for 66 yards with four touchdowns and two interceptions, while also rushing for 777 yards and seven scores on 6.8 per carry. His dual-threat ability gives the Rebels a chance to keep the chains and the clock moving and to keep that potent LSU offense on the sideline.
While the LSU offense is possibly the best in program history, the LSU defense isn’t as stout as it has been in years’ past. The Tigers are giving up 22.3 points and 340.4 yards per game, including 32.5 points and 446.2 yards per game in their four road games this season. Texas scored 38, Vanderbilt scored 38, Alabama scored 41 and Florida scored 28 on this LSU defense. It can be done, and the Rebels will pull out all the stops this week. That’s especially the case knowing they have a bye on deck next week to get ready for the Egg Bowl against Mississippi State.
LSU is 2-10 ATS in its last 12 games off an upset win as a road underdog. The Tigers are 1-4 ATS in their last five games vs. a team with a losing record. The Rebels are 5-1 ATS in their last six games overall. The home team is 5-1 ATS in the last six meetings.
Plays against road favorites of 10.5 to 21 points (LSU) - a dominant team outgaining their opponents by 125 or more yards per game, after gaining 525 or more total yards per game in their last two games are 52-23 (69.3%) ATS over the last 10 seasons. Bet Ole Miss Saturday.
|11-16-19||Texas +7 v. Iowa State||21-23||Win||100||30 h 25 m||Show|
15* Texas/Iowa State FS1 ANNIHILATOR on Texas +7
For starters, this is the first time that Texas has ever been an underdog to Iowa State dating back to at least 1980. And not only are they dogs, they are 7-point dogs here, which gives us room to spare even if Iowa State does win this game. The Cyclones simply aren’t 7 points better than Texas.
The Longhorns have a lot more to play for than Iowa State. If they win this game and win at Baylor next week, they could be going to the Big 12 title game. They would need Oklahoma to beat Baylor this week, but considering the Sooners are double-digits favorites, they chances of them winning that game are pretty good.
Texas put themselves in this position by erasing a 14-0 deficit to Kansas State last week and coming back to win 27-24. However, that game wasn’t as close as the final score would indicate. The Longhorns had a 477-304 yard edge over the Wildcats, outgaining them by 173 yards. The Wildcats got a kickoff return TD that made it interesting late, but the Longhorns were able to hold them off for the win. And now that puts them in this Big 12 title chase position they are in.
Iowa State has to be feeling snake-bitten. The Cyclones have four losses this season by a combined 11 points. I think the loss to Oklahoma last week was the last straw. They trailed by 21 points in the fourth quarter, came storming back to tie it, but decided to go for a 2-point conversion and the win and came up short. They have bounced back nicely from losses before, but I think they have taken all the close losses they can handle this season. I don’t expect them to be in a good mental state now that they are officially eliminated from Big 12 title contention.
Tom Herman is an animal as an underdog. Herman is 15-3 ATS as an underdog in his head-coaching career, which includes 11 outright upsets. Not to mention, dating back to his time as an offensive coordinator, he is 25-4 ATS as an underdog. Iowa State is just 3-6 ATS as a home favorite over the past two seasons.
Plays against home favorites of 3.5 to 10 points (Iowa State) - after having lost two of their last there games, with a winning record on the season are 47-16 (74.6%) ATS over the last fie seasons. Plays on road underdogs (Texas) - off a home conference win against an opponent that’s off a close loss by 7 points or less to a conference opponent are 39-13 (75%) ATS over the last five seasons. Roll with Texas Saturday.
|11-16-19||Navy v. Notre Dame -7||Top||20-52||Win||100||29 h 26 m||Show|
20* Navy/Notre Dame Non-Conference KNOCKOUT on Notre Dame -7
Notre Dame opened as a double-digit favorite where they should have been against Navy. This number has been bet all the way down to Notre Dame -7 now, and the price is right to pull the trigger on the Fighting Irish laying only a touchdown to the Midshipmen.
No team has improved more since last year than Navy, which went 3-10 and lost to Army again. Now the Midshipmen have opened 7-1 SU & 6-2 ATS this season and betting public has taken notice. Simply put, the time to back Navy was the first half of the season, not now that everyone has caught on. That’s why we’ll ’sell high’ on the Midshipmen this week as they are one of the most popular public underdogs on the board.
Navy has benefitted from playing the 97th-toughest schedule in the country, while Notre Dame has played the 31st-toughest. That’s 66 spots difference between these teams in strength of schedule. This will easily be Navy’s toughest test yet this season, and much tougher than their 23-35 loss at Memphis when they were 11-point dogs. Notre Dame is better than Memphis, yet it is only a 7-point favorite compared to 11 for Memphis. That fact alone shows you that there’s value with Notre Dame here.
The Fighting Irish really impressed me last week by going into Duke and handling their business 38-7 as 7-point favorites. They could have easily packed it in after suffering their second loss of the season at Michigan, but they did not. They suffered a hangover the next week against VA Tech and needed a late touchdown to win 21-20 as 17.5-point favorites. I was on VA Tech in that game and felt fortunate to get the cover as Notre Dame outgained the Hokies by 207 yards. Notre Dame went on to destroy Duke last week and outgain them by 272 yards. The hangover is gone, and it’s clear Notre Dame is still motivated to get the best bowl they can and another double-digit win season.
Notre Dame has been a double-digit favorite against Navy in seven of the last eight meetings. That’s how rare this single-digit line is. And when the line has been low, Notre Dame has been a bad football team. That’s not the case this year as the Fighting Irish are still one of the 15-20 best teams in the country. Notre Dame is 22-4 SU in the last 26 meetings while being favored by an average of 18.8 points per game. Notre Dame is 11-2 SU in the last 13 home meetings and has been favored by an average of 20.1 points per game. These numbers also show that this -7 price is cheap.
Plays against any team (Navy) - after beating the spread by 49 or more points in their last five games, a team that wins 80% or more of their games on the season while playing another team with a winning record are 73-35 (67.6%) ATS over the last five seasons.
Notre Dame is 16-0 SU in its last 16 home games with 12 of those wins coming by 7 points or more. Ken Niumatalolo is 5-15 ATS in road games off a bye week as the coach of Navy. Brian Kelly is 30-13 ATS when playing against a team with a winning percentage of greater than 75% in all games he has coached. The Fighting Irish are 7-1 ATS in their last eight home games vs. a team with a winning road record. Roll with Notre Dame Saturday.
|11-16-19||Indiana +14.5 v. Penn State||Top||27-34||Win||100||27 h 56 m||Show|
20* Big Ten GAME OF THE WEEK on Indiana +14.5
The Penn State Nittany Lions just had their bubble worst. After starting 8-0, they just lost to Minnesota on the road last week and likely won’t be going to the four-team playoff now. I said they were a fraud all along anyway, so it was about time they lost a close game after surviving several others. And if they win this game Saturday against Indiana, it won’t be by more than two touchdowns.
Penn State is in a ‘hangover’ spot from that loss to Minnesota. It’s also a ’sandwich’ spot because they have a huge game at Ohio State on deck. Look for the Nittany Lions to come out flat today against Indiana. I love the fact that this is an early 12:00 EST start time because the fans won’t be nearly as rowdy as they would be for a ‘white out’. Also, fans won’t be as excited now that the Nittany Lions aren’t undefeated any more.
The reason I’ve said Penn State is a fraud this year is because they were outgained in four of their first eight games this season despite being 8-0. They were outgained by both Buffalo and Pitt at home, were outgained by 62 yards in a fortunate 17-12 win at Iowa, and were outgained by 124 yards in a fortunate 28-21 home win over Michigan. They have been outgained in three of their five home games this season.
Indiana is one of the most improved teams in the country at 7-2 this season. And the Hoosiers have been flying under the radar all year as they have gone 5-1 ATS in their last six games overall. They have three wins by 31-plus points during this stretch, and road wins over Maryland and Nebraska. Their only loss during this stretch came on the road at Michigan State by 9 back before Sparty had a ton of players get injured and were playing well. Now Indiana has two full weeks to prepare for Penn State after having a bye following its 34-3 dismantling of Northwestern two weekends ago.
Jameis Franklin has been awful as a head coach of Penn State following any kind of loss. Indeed, Franklin is 3-14 ATS off one or more consecutive losses as the coach of Penn State. Franklin is 0-6 ATS off an upset loss as a favorite as the coach of the Nittany Lions having never covered in this spot. He clearly just doesn’t get through to his players when they are coming off a defeat.
Adding to Indiana’s motivation this week is the fact that it lost 28-33 at home to Penn State last year as 14-point dogs in a game they felt like they should have won. The Hoosiers had a 32-20 edge in first downs and a 554-417 yard edge, outgaining the Nittany Lions by 137 yards. They haven’t forgotten about that defeat and will want to exact some revenge here.
Plays on road underdogs (Indiana) - an excellent offensive team averaging 440 or more yards per game against an average offensive team (390-440 YPG), after outgaining its last opponent by 225 or more total yards are 34-10 (77.3%) ATS over the last 10 seasons. Take Indiana Saturday.
|11-16-19||Michigan State v. Michigan -13.5||10-44||Win||100||27 h 55 m||Show|
15* Michigan State/Michigan FOX Early ANNIHILATOR on Michigan -13.5
Mark Dantonio just seems to have lost his magic at Michigan State. The Spartans went 3-9 in 2016 and just 7-6 in 2018. They will be fortunate to even make a bowl game this year. I just don’t like the mental state of the Spartans right now off four straight losses while going 0-5 ATS in their last five games overall.
After getting blasted by three of the best teams in the Big Ten in Ohio State by 24, Wisconsin by 38 and Penn State by 21, the Spartans returned from their bye last week and seemed primed for a good performance. Instead, they blew a 28-3 lead and lost to lowly Illinois 34-37 as 16-point favorites. I don’t see how you come back from that kind of a defeat as they gave up 27 points in the 4th quarter.
Few teams have been hit harder by injuries than Michigan State. They lost leading receiver Darrell Stewart a few weeks ago to a leg injury. They lost leading tackler Joe Bachie for the season recently, who is the heart and soul of their defense. Meanwhile, Michigan is almost fully healthy with only three players listed on the injury report compared to 15 for Michigan State. And the Wolverines come in rested and ready to go off their bye week and ready to finish the season strong.
It’s like the Wolverines flipped the switch after falling behind 21-0 against Penn State. They came back and nearly won in a 21-28 loss in a ‘white out’ game at night at Penn State. They outgained the Nittany Lions by 124 yards and probably should have won. They responded with one of the most impressive wins by any team this season, a 45-14 home win over Notre Dame while outgaining the Fighting Irish by 257 yards. And last time out they avoided a letdown and rolled Maryland 38-7 as 21.5-point road favorites.
This Michigan offense has come to life in the second half of the season. The Wolverines are averaging 36.5 points per game in their last four games despite facing some elite defenses in Notre Dame and Penn State. I just don’t see how Michigan State can keep up with their putrid offense, which averages just 23.1 points and 366 yards per game this season. Michigan is 5-0 at home this season and allowing just 11.8 points and 227 yards per game at the Big House.
Michigan State has been a thorn in Michigan’s side, especially before Jim Harbaugh took over. But the Wolverines have won two of the last three meetings, including a 21-7 win last year on the road. This is their chance to kick ‘little brother’ while he is down, and you know the Wolverines are going to want to take full advantage. I see no way the Spartans stay within two touchdowns.
Michigan is 6-0 ATS in home games after having won two of their last three games over the last three seasons. The Wolverines are 8-1 ATS in home games after a game where they forced one or fewer turnovers over the last two seasons. The Spartans are 0-6 ATS in their last six vs. a team with a winning record. The Wolverines are 5-1 ATS in their last six games overall. Take Michigan Saturday.
|11-16-19||Kansas +17.5 v. Oklahoma State||13-31||Loss||-110||27 h 55 m||Show|
15* Big 12 PLAY OF THE DAY on Kansas +17.5
The Kansas Jayhawks are certainly improved in their first season under Les Miles. They played Oklahoma (20-45), Texas (48-50) and Texas Tech (37-34) tougher than the books expected while going 3-0 ATS. And after they finally got their Big 12 win over Texas Tech, they suffered a letdown the next week and were blown out by Kansas State.
Now it’s time to ‘buy low’ on the Jayhawks after everyone has forgotten about them following that loss to Kansas State, which simply owns them. The Jayhawks have had two full weeks to stew over that loss and get ready for Oklahoma State. I think the bye week came at a perfect time for them.
Oklahoma State is also off a bye week, but it’s bad timing for them. The Cowboys are coming off two straight wins over Iowa State as 11-point road dogs and TCU as 1-point home favorites. They had some momentum built up by catching both Iowa State and TCU off guard. Now they are back in the role of the favorite, which hasn’t gone too well for them.
The Cowboys were previously upset by Texas Tech as 9.5-point road favorites in a 35-45 loss. They were also upset at home as 6-point favorites against Baylor in a 27-45 defeat. I just don’t think the Cowboys can be trusted to lay this big of a number in conference play because they turn the ball over too much, and their three conference wins have come by 7, 7 and 13 points.
Kansas stud QB Carter Stanley is back healthy now after getting knocked out of that loss to Kansas State with an injury. Stanley is completing 63.6% of his passes for 2,015 yards with 19 touchdowns and only seven interceptions while averaging a solid 7.6 yards per attempt. Pooka Williams has been productive since coming back from suspension, rushing for 765 yards and three touchdowns on 5.1 per carry.
This is one of the most improved offenses in the country and they’re fully capable of matching Oklahoma State score for score. The Jayhawks showed it in their 48-50 loss at Texas and their 37-34 win over Texas Tech, which are two teams that have beaten Oklahoma State this season. The Cowboys are giving up 32.2 points and 463.7 yards per game in Big 12 play, and they can’t be laying 17 points with that putrid defense.
The Jayhawks are 8-1 ATS in their last nine games following a loss. Kansas is 4-0 ATS in its last four road games vs. a team with a winning home record. Bet Kansas Saturday.
|11-15-19||Louisiana Tech v. Marshall -4.5||Top||10-31||Win||100||28 h 16 m||Show|
25* C-USA GAME OF THE YEAR on Marshall -4.5
Motivation will be on Marshall’s side this week. The Thundering Herd are 0.5 games behind the FAU Owls for first place in the C-USA East. They have the head-to-head tiebreaker over the Owls after winning on the road as 4-point dogs, so they control their own destiny.
Conversely, Louisiana Tech will have a hard time getting motivated this week because they have the inside track to win the much weaker C-USA West. They are 5-0 in the conference and a loss to Marshall will not hurt them because they hold the tiebreaker over 4-1 Southern Miss after winning head-to-head. So they essentially have a two-game lead in the division.
The spot is also a good one for Marshall, which comes off a bye week and has had two full weeks to get ready for LA Tech. Conversely, LA Tech will be on a short week after playing this past Saturday against North Texas. It’s crazy how the schedule makers have given Marshall such a huge rest advantage coming into this weeknight game.
Louisiana Tech has played one of the easiest schedules in the entire country. Indeed, the Bulldogs have played the 145th-ranked schedule. That means some FCS teams have even played harder schedules than they have. Their eight wins have come against Grambling, Bowling Green, FIU, Rice, UMass, Southern Miss, UTEP and North Texas. And they barely beat Grambling (20-14) and Rice (23-20).
There are rumors surrounding the Louisiana Tech program that several key players could be suspended for this game, including QB J’mar Smith, who has thrown for 2,483 yards with a 14-to-4 TD/INT ratio this season, while also rushing for 226 yards and two scores. If the news comes out soon, this line will jump even more than it already has. The good news is I like Marshall at this line regardless if anyone for LA Tech is suspended. It would just be an added bonus if they were suspended.
Plays against any team (LA Tech) - after beating the spread by 49 or more points total in their last five games, a team that wins more than 80% of their games on the season against a team with a winning record are 73-35 (67.6%) ATS over the last five seasons. The Thundering Herd are 16-5-2 ATS in their last 23 home games vs. a team with a winning road record. Marshall is 4-1 at home this season with its only loss to Cincinnati. Bet Marshall Friday.
|11-14-19||Buffalo v. Kent State +6||27-30||Win||100||8 h 4 m||Show|
15* Buffalo/Kent State MAC No-Brainer on Kent State +6
The Kent State Golden Flashes have been one of the more improved teams in the country this season. They are only 3-6, but they have been much more competitive this year than last year. Each of their last three losses have come by 7 points or fewer. And while they are 2-3 in conference play, they are actually outscoring opponents by 9.8 points per game in MAC action.
I think the Golden Flashes will give a big effort here at home Thursday night in this standalone MAC game. This is their final stand if they want to stay alive for a bowl game since they have six losses on the season. They played both Ohio (38-45) and Toledo (33-35) tough on the road, and Miami Ohio (16-23) at home. Those are three of the best teams in the MAC. If they can hang with them, they can certainly hang with Buffalo tonight.
The Bulls come in overvalued on a three-game winning streak while also covering four in a row. Their wins over bottom feeders Akron and Eastern Michigan weren’t impressive at all. And their win over Central Michigan was very fluky because the Chippewas gave the game away with five turnovers.
Kent State isn’t a team that beats itself with turnovers as the Golden Flashes haven’t committed more than two in any game this season, and they’ve only committed nine in nine games on the season. Buffalo has been relying on turnovers during its 4-0 ATS streak, forcing a total of 12 turnovers in its last four games overall. I don’t trust teams that rely on forcing turnovers to win games.
Kent State is 11-2 ATS in its last 13 home games after covering the spread in three of its last four coming in. Plays on underdogs of 3.5 to 10 points (Kent State) - off a road cover where they lost as an underdogs, with 6-plus more total starters returning than their opponent are 25-5 (83.3%) ATS since 1992. Roll with Kent State Thursday.
|11-13-19||Northern Illinois v. Toledo -2||Top||31-28||Loss||-110||9 h 45 m||Show|
20* NIU/Toledo MAC GAME OF THE WEEK on Toledo -2
The Toledo Rockets sit at 6-3 and are in control of their own destiny in winning the MAC West. They have the head-to-head tiebreaker with Western Michigan after beating the Broncos at home. The position they are in assures they will show up week in and week out to try and win the MAC West.
Now the Rockets host a poor Northern Illinois team that is just 3-6 this season and clearly in rebuilding mode. The Huskies are coming off an ugly 10-48 road loss to Central Michigan in which they gave up 615 total yards and committed four turnovers. I don’t understand why they are getting so much respect from oddsmakers. Their name carries some weight, but this has been a rebuilding project all year after losing their head coach in the offseason.
Toledo is 5-0 SU & 4-1 ATS at home this season, outscoring opponents by 12.8 points per game. Their offense has lit up the scoreboard with 35.2 points and 489.6 yards per game at home this year. Northern Illinois is 1-5 on the road, getting outscored by 16.4 points per game. Their offense has only managed 19.3 points per game on the highway this season, and I just don’t see how they are going to keep up with Toledo on the scoreboard in this one.
The Rockets also have the matchup advantage. They rush for 250 yards per game and 5.4 per carry on the season. Well, Northern Illinois gives up 175 rushing yards per game and 4.8 per carry. They give up 0.8 yards per carry more than their opponents rush for on average. The Rockets should be able to run the football at will on them.
Northern Illinois is 1-8 ATS off a game where it forced zero turnovers over the last three seasons. The Huskies are 2-8 ATS int heir last 10 games after allowing more than 40 points in their previous game. The Rockets are 5-1 ATS in their last six games following an ATS loss. Bet Toledo Wednesday.
|11-12-19||Eastern Michigan v. Akron UNDER 46.5||42-14||Loss||-103||7 h 37 m||Show|
15* MAC PLAY OF THE DAY on Eastern Michigan/Akron UNDER 46.5
There has been snow and rain in Akron all day Tuesday. There is a chance of precipitation all day today. The temperature will be around 23 degrees by game time and it will be windy. These are perfect conditions for a bet on the UNDER tonight.
Akron is challenging UMass for the worst team in football. The Zips are 0-9 SU & 0-9 ATS. Their biggest problem has been their putrid offense, which averages just 10.2 points and 255.6 yards per game on the season. The Zips have scored a total of 9 points in their last four games, an average of just 2.3 points per game.
It’s not like Eastern Michigan has been lighting up the scoreboard since getting into MAC play, either. The Eagles are scoring just 24.2 points per game in their five MAC games this season. And the Zips have at least been respectable defensively this season in giving up 390 yards per game and 5.4 per play.
These teams met last year with Eastern Michigan winning 27-7 for 34 combined points. I think we see a similar output from both teams tonight as this game stays well UNDER the total.
Akron is 10-1 UNDER vs. teams that allow 200 or more rushing yards per game over the last three seasons. The Zips are 8-1 UNDER vs. teams who allow 31 or more points per game over the last two years. The UNDER is 4-0 in Eagles last four games following a double-digit home loss. The UNDER is 6-1 in Zips last seven Tuesday games. The UNDER is 43-18 in Zips last 61 conference games. The UNDER is 35-17 in Zips last 52 home games. Roll with the UNDER in this game Tuesday.
|11-09-19||Missouri v. Georgia -16||0-27||Win||100||53 h 48 m||Show|
15* Missouri/Georgia ESPN No-Brainer on Georgia -16
It’s like everyone wrote off Georgia after a fluky loss to South Carolina in which they outgained the Gamecocks by 171 yards and should have won. This is still one of the best teams in the country. And after opening ranked 6th in the initial playoff rankings, they can certainly use some style points here down the stretch. That’s part of the reason why I’m laying the 16 points here with the Bulldogs.
Georgia was dominant last week in its 24-17 win over Florida in which the Bulldogs outgained the Gators by 120 yards. Jake Fromm proved there was nothing wrong with him, throwing for 279 yards and two touchdowns without an interception against a very good Florida defense. The Bulldogs held the Gators to a season-low 278 yards, including 21 rushing on 19 carries.
Georgia has outgained all eight of its opponents this season and six of those by 120 yards or more. The Bulldogs are outgaining opponents by over 194 yards per game and outscoring them by 23.1 points per game on the season. They have an elite defense that allows 11.4 points and 268.1 yards per game.
Missouri is 5-0 at home this season against a soft schedule, but the Tigers are 0-3 SU & 0-3 ATS on the road. They are scoring just 17.3 points per game on the highway and getting outscored by 11.7 points per game. This despite the fact that they have had a soft road schedule and have been double-digit favorites in all three road games. They lost 31-37 as 15.5-point favorites at Wyoming, lost 14-21 as 21.5-point favorites at Vanderbilt, and lost 7-29 as 10-point favorites at Kentucky. They have failed to cover the spread by a combined 82 points in their three road games.
Now, the Tigers face their stiffest test of the season on the road at Georgia this week. They are getting too much respect from oddsmakers as only 16-point dogs given what we’ve seen from them on the highway thus far this season. Part of the reason the line is low is because Missouri is off a bye, but QB Kelly Bryant came up limp with a hamstring injury last game and won’t be fully healthy even with the bye. And Georgia had a bye before Florida, so the Bulldogs will still be fresh this week. And like I said the Bulldogs need style points so they will be plenty motivated this week.
The Bulldogs are 6-1 ATS in their last seven November games. Georgia is 7-2 ATS in its last nine conference games. Georgia is 12-5 ATS in its last 17 vs. a team with a winning record. The Tigers are 0-4 ATS in their last four road games. I like the fact that this is a night game and the fans will be rowdy in a great atmosphere in Athens. Bet Georgia Saturday.
|11-09-19||LSU +6.5 v. Alabama||46-41||Win||100||56 h 41 m||Show|
15* LSU/Alabama CBS No-Brainer on LSU +6.5
The LSU Tigers finally have the team to beat Alabama. The Les Miles era is over, and there’s a new sheriff in town in Ed Orgeron. Orgeron has proven himself quickly at LSU by going 7-1 SU against Top 10 teams in his last eight matchups against them. I really believe LSU is neck and neck with Ohio State as the best team in the country this year.
The reason LSU has a chance to beat Alabama finally is because they have their best offense in program history. The Tigers have gone to a more up-tempo passing game to take advantage of all their athletes. The result has been an average of 46.7 points and 535.9 yards per game this season. Joe Burrow is a Heisman favorite while completing 78.8% of his passes for 2,805 yards with a 30-to-4 TD/INT ratio while averaging 10.8 yards per attempt.
LSU has proven its meddle against a much tougher schedule than that of Alabama. LSU has played the 34th-toughest schedule, while Alabama has played the 59th. LSU has already played and disposed of two top 10 teams in Florida and Auburn. And I think the fact that they only beat Auburn 23-20 last time out actually has them undervalued here.
That was a hugely misleading final as LSU outgained Auburn by 221 yards and racked up 508 total yards on what is a very good Auburn defense. They also had 42 points and 511 total yards against Florida’s vaunted defense. You would be hard-pressed finding two better defenses in the country. Now the Tigers get to go up against what is a weak Alabama defense by their standards. Alabama has allowed 23 points to South Carolina, 31 points to Ole Miss and 28 points to Texas A&M this season. None of those offenses compare to the one LSU is going to throw at them.
No question Alabama also has an explosive offense. But QB Tua Tagovailoa won’t be 100% after having knee surgery at the end of October. And there’s an outside shot he doesn’t play. Either way, this will be the best defense that Alabama has faced this season, and it’s not even close. LSU gives up just 20.0 points and 315.4 yards per game on the year. The Tigers still have the same type of dominant defense they always have, except this year they have an offense that can compliment it.
LSU is 13-3 ATS in its last 16 road games vs. a team with a winning home record. The Tigers are 5-0 ATS in their last five road games overall. The Crimson Tide are 0-5 ATS in their last five games following an ATS win. Alabama is 0-5 ATS in its last five home games vs. a team with a winning road record. The road team is 4-1 ATS in the last five meetings. Orgeron is 11-1 ATS vs. good passing teams averaging 8 or more yards per attempt as the coach of LSU. Bet LSU Saturday.
|11-09-19||USC v. Arizona State -1.5||Top||31-26||Loss||-107||49 h 24 m||Show|
25* Pac-12 GAME OF THE YEAR on Arizona State -1.5
I love the spot for for the Arizona State Sun Devils here. They opened 5-1, but back-to-back road losses to Utah and UCLA have dropped them to 5-3 on the season. Now they have had two weeks to stew over those losses and get ready for USC coming to town this week. They’ll be rested and ready to go and highly motivated for a victory in Tempe Saturday.
The Clay Helton rumors are swirling at USC after an ugly 24-56 home loss to USC last week. He is squarely on the hot seat and may be losing his team. Of course, it doesn’t help that the Trojans are more banged up than most teams in the country. They are missing key players all over the field on both sides of the ball, which hasn’t helped their cause.
USC is 1-3 SU & 1-3 ATS on the road this season. They lost to BYU, Washington and Notre Dame and were extremely fortunate to beat Colorado 35-31 as 10.5-point favorites, needing to come back from a 10-point deficit in the final six minutes to escape with victory from the jaws of defeat. They’ll fall to 1-4 on the highway with yet another loss Saturday.
Arizona State has one of the best defenses in the country, and that is going to be the difference in this game. The Sun Devils allow 21.1 points, 358 yards per game and 5.1 yards per play this season. USC allows 28.3 points, 426.7 yards per game and 5.9 per play this season.
I think the bye week is huge for freshman QB Jayden Daniels and his growth. Daniels has an 11-to-2 TD/INT ratio this season, is averaging 8.5 yards per attempt, and has added 273 rushing yards and three scores. Daniels should be able to find plenty of success against this soft, banged-up USC defense that just gave up 56 points to Oregon last week.
Arizona State is a tremendous 13-1 ATS in its last 14 home games when playing with two or more weeks’ rest. The Sun Devils are 10-2 ATS in their last 12 home games off a road game where both teams scored 31 points or more. Clay Helton is 0-8 ATS as a road dog of 7 points or less as the coach of USC. The Trojans are losing by 17.0 points per game in this spot. The Trojans are 7-18-1 ATS in their last 26 road games. Bet Arizona State Saturday.
|11-09-19||Illinois +14.5 v. Michigan State||37-34||Win||100||49 h 18 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Undervalued Underdog on Illinois +14.5
The Illinois Fighting Illini sit at 5-4 and on the verge of making their first bowl game since 2014. It is Year 3 in the Lovie Smith era, and he is finally putting his stamp on this program. I look for the Fighting Illini to continue the momentum they have built over the last 3-4 weeks and to give Michigan State a run for its money Saturday.
Illinois is 3-1 SU & 4-0 ATS in its last four games overall. The run actually started when they trailed 28-0 against Michigan and fought back to make it 28-25 before eventually coming up short. The Fighting Illini pulled the upset of the season the next week in a 24-23 win as 29-point home dogs to Wisconsin. And they’ve gone on to prove that loss wasn’t a fluke and to avoid a letdown by beating Purdue 24-6 on the road and Rutgers 38-10 at home.
Michigan State went just 3-9 a few years ago, and it is having another disastrous season in 2019. The Spartans sit at 4-4 and are coming off three straight ugly losses to Ohio State (10-34), Wisconsin (0-38) and Penn State (7-28). Those were three games they had circled coming into they season, and they lost all three in blowout fashion. I can’t see them getting back up off the mat in time to want to put Illinois away by more than two touchdowns, which is what it’s going to take to cover this inflated 14.5-point spread. And it’s a sandwich spot with rival Michigan on deck next week.
As has been the case throughout the years, it’s just tough to lay big numbers with Michigan State because of their offense. The Spartans only average 21.7 points per game this season and have been a dumpster fire on that side of the ball once again. And I know Michigan State is coming off a bye, but how excited could they have been on that bye week off three straight losses and their season ruined? I think Illinois is ‘all in’ this week knowing it has a bye on deck next week.
Mark Dantonio is 1-9 ATS in home games after scoring 3 points or less in the first half last game as the coach of Michigan State. Dantonio is 1-8 ATS off a loss by 21 or more points as the coach of the Spartans. Illinois is 14-4 ATS in its last 18 road games off a game where it committed zero turnovers. The Spartans are 2-10 ATS in all home games over the last two seasons. Michigan State is 0-5 ATS in its last five vs. a team with a winning record.
Plays against home favorites (Michigan State) - after scoring 17 points or less in two straight games against an opponent that scored 37 or more points last game are 24-4 (85.7%) ATS over the last 10 seasons. Roll with Illinois Saturday.
|11-09-19||Stanford -3 v. Colorado||13-16||Loss||-110||49 h 58 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday No-Doubt Rout on Stanford -3
The Stanford Cardinal have done a great job of keeping it together following a tough start to the season. They have had to start three different quarterbacks due to injuries, and they’ve had some injuries along the offensive line that have forced several freshmen into action. The bye week came at a great time here as the Cardinal have had two weeks to get healthy and get ready for Colorado this weekend.
Now, the Cardinal are as healthy as they have been at any point this season. They sit at 4-4 and have their sights set on a bowl game when it didn’t seem possible when they were sitting at 1-3. They have gone 3-1 since and got starting QB K.J. Costello back from injury last time out in a 41-31 home win over Arizona. He makes all the difference for this team as he decided to forego the NFL and come back for his senior season. Their only loss during this stretch came when they had to start their 3rd-string QB against UCLA.
Colorado basically has nothing to play for at this point sitting at 3-6 on the season. The Buffaloes won’t be winning their final three games to make a bowl because they still have to play Washington and Utah. They have lost five straight coming in going 0-5 SU & 1-4 ATS. They are just 1-5 in Pac-12 play and getting outscored by 16.0 points per game. I think we are getting Stanford very cheap here as only 3-point favorites.
The Cardinal are 4-1 SU & 4-1 ATS in the last five meetings. The Buffaloes are 0-8-1 ATS in their last nine November games. Colorado is 2-8 ATS in its last 10 games following a loss. The Buffaloes are 7-18-1 ATS in their last 26 conference games. Stanford is 30-13 ATS in its last 43 November road games. The Buffaloes are 0-12 ATS after failing to cover the spread in two of their last three games over the past three seasons. Take Stanford Saturday.
|11-09-19||Florida State v. Boston College -2||Top||38-31||Loss||-109||52 h 1 m||Show|
20* ACC GAME OF THE WEEK on Boston College -2
Florida State had their 36-year bowl streak snapped last season with a 5-7 record. It was the longest streak in college football. They have no motivation to keep that streak alive now that it was snapped last season. I have no doubt players are just ready to be done with this disastrous season.
Willie Taggart was fired over the weekend after an ugly 10-27 home loss to rival Miami. The Seminoles managed just 203 total yards against Miami and were outgained by 150 yards. Odell Haggins takes over as interim coach. And while he’s trying to say all the right things, I just have no doubt players won’t respond. I expect them to lose this game at Boston College and the regular season finale at Florida to miss out on a bowl again.
Boston College is really showing some life here down the stretch. Few teams have been more undervalued than the Eagles. They are 5-1 ATS in their last six games overall with their only losses coming at Clemson, to Wake Forest by 3 and at Louisville by 2.
They beat NC State by 21 and won at Syracuse by 31 in two of their last three games that surrounded the blowout loss at Clemson. Their offense racked up 532 yards on NC State including 429 rushing. They added 691 yards against Syracuse and rushed for 496. Look for their offensive line to dominate Florida State’s defensive line, and winning the battle in the trenches is going to be their key to getting a win here.
The Eagles know this is their best chance to clinch a bowl game as they sit at 5-4 on the year. They still have road games coming up against Notre Dame and Pitt to close the season, ending a stretch of four of their final five games away from home. That makes this Senior Day for them and their final home game, only adding too their motivation.
The Seminoles are 1-8-3 ATS in their last 12 road games vs. a team with a winning home record. The Eagles are 7-2 ATS in their last nine vs. a team with a losing record. Boston College is 10-1 ATS vs. poor passing defenses allowing 58% completions or worse over the last three seasons. Florida State is 1-9 ATS after playing a hoe game over the last two seasons. The Seminoles are 0-10 ATS off two consecutive games where they forced one or fewer turnovers over the last three years. The Eagles are 18-7-1 ATS in their last 26 conference games. Take Boston College Saturday.
|11-09-19||Penn State v. Minnesota +7||Top||26-31||Win||100||52 h 0 m||Show|
20* Penn State/Minnesota ABC Early ANNIHILATOR on Minnesota +7
The Minnesota Golden Gophers will be playing the disrespected card this week leading up to this huge showdown with Penn State. I guarantee you PJ Fleck has told his players that nobody believes in them after they came out ranked No. 17 in the initial college football playoff rankings. I think they will be ‘all in’ and that ranking actually takes the pressure off of them from being unbeaten and puts more of the pressure on Penn State in this game as the road favorite.
Fleck is quickly proving himself as one of the best head coaches in the country. He went 5-7 in his first season, took them to a bowl and a 7-6 record in his second season, and now has them 8-0 and in the playoff conversation in his third year. I realize it has come against a soft schedule, but you can only play the teams that are in front of you, and what impresses me is how much this veteran team that returned 16 starters is improving as the season goes on.
Indeed, the Gophers are 5-0 ATS in Big Ten play this season. They went on the road and beat Purdue as underdogs 38-31. They blew out Illinois 40-17 as 14-point home favorites, the same Illinois team that is on a three-game winning streak with a win over Wisconsin. They crushed Nebraska 34-7 as 7.5-point favorites. They handled their business at Rutgers 42-7 as 28-point favorites. And they crushed Maryland 52-10 as 14-point favorites. It’s not like they are squeaking by teams, outscoring their five Big Ten opponents by 26.8 points per game and outgunning them by 201.2 yards per game.
Penn State is the team that is the fraud coming in. The Nittany Lions are 8-0, but they have been outgained in four of their eight games. They were outgained by Buffalo, Pitt, Iowa and Michigan and fortunate to win all four of those games. To compare, Minnesota has only been outgained once in its eight games this season. No team that gets outgained in half of their games should be 8-0.
Plays on underdogs of 3.5 to 10 points (Minnesota) - after scoring 42 points in two straight games are 45-15 (75%) ATS over the last five seasons. Penn State is 4-14 ATS in its last 18 road games vs. excellent defensive teams that allow 285 or fewer yards per game. The Nittany Lions are 7-23 ATS in their last 30 road games after allowing 9 points or less last game. Penn State is 1-7 ATS in its last eight games off an ATS win. The Golden Gophers are 6-0 ATS in their last six conference games. Roll with Minnesota Saturday.
|11-08-19||Washington v. Oregon State +10.5||19-7||Loss||-112||39 h 46 m||Show|
15* Washington/Oregon State Pac-12 Late-Night BAILOUT on Oregon State +10.5
After losing three of their last four games to Stanford, Oregon and Utah, the Washington Huskies have nothing to play for now. They had dreams of winning the Pac-12, but those dreams are crushed now. They best they can do is go to a bowl game at 5-4. I think they suffer a hangover from their tough 28-33 home loss to Utah last week.
Oregon State has life and momentum right now. The Beavers have won three of their last four to improve to 4-4 on the season. They now have a legitimate shot of going to a bowl game. It’s a team that has been grossly underrated all season, especially since they got into Pac-12 play. The Beavers are 6-1 ATS in their last seven games overall.
Most impressively, Oregon State’s last three wins have all come on the road in upset fashion. The Bears upset UCLA 48-31 as 4.5-point road dogs. After losing at home to Utah, they went back on the road and topped California 21-17 as 10.5-point dogs. And last week they went on the road and topped Arizona 56-38 as 4.5-point dogs. They have covered the spread by a combined 58.5 points in those three games to show just how undervalued they’ve been.
Now, the Beavers are catching double-digits at home against a deflated Washington team. The home crowd will be a huge advantage for them here on this standalone Friday night game as fans are finally excited about this program with a chance to get to a bowl. Head coach Jonathan Smith is doing a fantastic job. He is a former player here, so fans are even more excited for him and this team.
Oregon State boasts the best offense it has had in years. The Beavers are scoring 33.6 points per game and averaging 431.1 yards per game behind a balanced attack that averages 177 rushing yards per game and 5.0 per carry, as well as 254 passing yards per game. And Washington’s defense isn’t nearly as dominant as it once was, giving up 25.3 points and 392.2 yards per game in conference play. It shouldn’t be too surprising considering the Huskies only returned two starts on D this year.
Plays on underdogs of 3.5 to 10.5 points (Oregon State) - a good offensive team (5.6 to 6.2 YPPG) against a team with an average defense (4.8 to 5.6 YPP), after gaining 6.75 or more yards per play in their previous game are 44-14 (75.9%) ATS over the last 10 seasons. The Beavers are 31-11 ATS in their last 42 games after covering the spread in four of their last five games coming in. The Huskies are 4-11 ATS in their last 15 conference games. Take Oregon State Friday.
|11-07-19||Temple v. South Florida +2.5||17-7||Loss||-112||12 h 1 m||Show|
15* Temple/USF ESPN No-Brainer on South Florida +2.5
Charlie Strong deserves a lot of credit for turning around USF’s season following a 1-3 start. The Bulls have gone 3-1 since with an upset home win over BYU and blowout road wins over UConn by 26 and ECU by 25 to improve to 4-4 on the season. Their only loss during this stretch came on the road against a powerhouse Navy team.
Now, the Bulls sit at 4-4 and with a legitimate chance to make a bowl game. If they are going to go bowling, this is a must-win situation for them because they have some very tough games coming up next against Cincinnati, Memphis and UCF. Look for the Bulls to handle their business and pull off the upset at home tonight.
Temple is coming off arguably its three biggest games of the season upsetting Memphis at home, but getting blown out by SMU by 24 on the road and by UCF by 42 at home. And that was a fluky win over Memphis as the Tigers committed four turnovers to give the game away.
South Florida has been able to run the ball at will on opponents, averaging 180 rushing yards per game and 5.0 per carry this season. And during this run they are averaging 263.3 rushing yards per game 6.5 per carry in their last four games overall. Now they face a Temple team that has allowed an average of 291.5 rushing yards per game in their last two games against SMU and UCF. Look for the Bulls to be able to run at will on this Temple defense.
The home team is 5-0 SU & 4-1 ATS in the last five meetings. South Florida has won by 36 and 21 in its two home meetings with Temple during this stretch. And the Bulls were the only team to cover on the road in this series as they only lost 17-27 as 14-point dogs at Temple last year. The Bulls want some revenge from that defeat adding to their motivation. The Owls are 0-4 ATS in their last four road games.
Plays on all teams where the line is +3 to -3 (USF) - after outrushing its last opponent by 150 or more yards against a team that was outrushed by 125 or more yards in their previous game are 27-6 (81.8%) ATS over the last five seasons. Take South Florida Thursday.
|11-06-19||Miami-OH +7 v. Ohio||24-21||Win||100||9 h 24 m||Show|
15* Miami (OH)/Ohio ESPN 2 No-Brainer on Miami Ohio +7
The Ohio Bobcats have been overvalued all season because they were the popular pick to win the MAC this year. They have disappointed, going 4-4 SU & 2-6 ATS despite playing the 103rd-ranked schedule in the country. Their inexperience has shown as they returned just 10 starters this year. The Bobcats continue to be overvalued here as 7-point favorites against Miami Ohio.
The Redhawks have also gone 4-4 this season, but it has come against the 60th-ranked schedule in the country. That’s 43 spots tougher than the slate Ohio has faced. They have had to play road games against Iowa, Cincinnati and Ohio State, which have resulted in three of their four losses.
That tough schedule has helped Miami Ohio get ready for MAC play. They have dominated in MAC action, going 3-1 SU & 3-1 ATS with upset home wins over Buffalo and Northern Illinois, as well as an upset road win at Kent State. The fact that they were dogs in all three of those games just goes to show how disrespected this team is and how undervalued they have been after that tough start against that schedule.
Yes, Miami Ohio lost 16-38 at Western Michigan, but that was one of the most misleading finals in the MAC this season. The Redhawks outgained the Broncos by 55 yards and held their explosive offense to just 310 total yards. But they lost the turnover battle 3-1. They only trailed 16-21 in the 4th quarter but the Broncos tacked on 17 points in the final 7:22 to make the final margin look worse than it really was.
Ohio has been outgained in five of its eight games this season and is getting outgained by 35 yards per game on the season. The Bobcats have a leaky defense that allows 446.4 yards per game and 6.4 yards per play against teams that average 398 yards per game and 5.7 per play. They have given up 39 points to Northern Illinois and 38 points to Kent State in two of their last three games, which are two of the worst offenses in the MAC.
Miami Ohio is 9-1 ATS after playing a conference game over the last two seasons. The Redhawks are 10-2 ATS against conference opponents over the last two seasons. The Bobcats are 0-4 ATS in their last four home games. Ohio is 1-5 ATS in its last six games following a bye week. Take Miami Ohio Wednesday.
|11-05-19||Kent State v. Toledo -6.5||Top||33-35||Loss||-117||8 h 59 m||Show|
20* MAC GAME OF THE WEEK on Toledo -6.5
The Toledo Rockets are undervalued right now because they lost two straight road games to Bowling Green and Ball State in ugly fashion. But as usual, the Rockets have a tremendous home-field advantage, and that will be the case again here in a standalone MAC Tuesday night home game. The Rockets are 4-0 SU & 4-0 ATS at home this season winning by 15.5 points per game.
Kent State is certainly improved this season, but let’s be honest, they haven’t beaten anyone. The Golden Flashes are 3-5 this season with their three wins coming against Kennesaw State (by 3), Bowling Green and Akron. They are 0-5 against everyone else with all five losses by 7 points or more and by an average of 24.8 points per game.
Toledo will have a massive advantage on the ground in this game. The Rockets are rushing for 245 yards per game and 5.4 per carry this season. Kent State gives up a whopping 251 rushing yards per game and 5.1 per carry. I just don’t see how the Golden Flashes are going to get off the field with their run defense. Toledo should be able to score at will.
Toledo is 4-0 SU & 3-1 ATS in its last four meetings with Kent State with all four wins coming by double-digits and by an average of 19 points per game. The home team is 5-1 ATS in the last six meetings. The Golden Flashes are 1-4 ATS in their last five vs. a team with a. Winning record. The Rockets are 4-0 ATS in their last four home games. Toledo is 14-6 ATS in its last 20 vs. a team with a losing record. The Rockets are 4-1 ATS in their last five Tuesday games. Bet Toledo Tuesday.
|11-03-19||Fresno State v. Hawaii -1.5||41-38||Loss||-115||71 h 35 m||Show|
15* Fresno State/Hawaii MWC Late-Night BAILOUT on Hawaii -1.5
No team covered more spreads than Fresno State and Jeff Tedford for two seasons running in 2017 and 2018. As a result, the Bulldogs came into 2019 way overvalued, and bettors just seem to be stuck on the past. The fact of the matter is this is a rebuilding year for the Bulldogs as they returned only nine starters, including three on offense. They simply aren’t as good as they were in 2017 and 2018.
Indeed, Fresno State is just 3-4 SU & 2-4-1 ATS through its first seven games of the season. Their three wins have come against Sacramento State by 14 as 24.5-point favorites, New Mexico State by 13 as 21-point favorites, and UNLV by 29 as 16.5-point favorites. Those are two of the worst FBS teams in the country and an FCS team.
When Fresno State has stepped up in class, they have lost. They lost their first two games of the season to USC and Minnesota. Then in conference play they lost 24-43 at Air Force as 3-point dogs and were thoroughly outplayed. And last week they were upset 31-41 by Colorado State at home as 13.5-point favorites. They gave up 500 total yards to Colorado State. Their defense has suffered the biggest drop off as they have allowed 31 or more points four times this year.
Hawaii is one of the most improved teams in the country. The Rainbow Warriors are 5-3 this season with their only losses coming to Washington and Boise State on the road, as well as Air Force at home. They have impressive wins over Arizona and Oregon State in the Pac-12, a dominant 54-3 win at Nevada, and a solid 45-31 win at New Mexico last week.
I think a big reason we are getting Hawaii as less than a field goal favorite was due to that 45-31 win at New Mexico last week. That final score was a lot closer than the game really was. In fact, Hawaii led New Mexico 45-10 with just under eight minutes left in the game. They pulled their starters, and New Mexico tacked on three touchdowns in the final eight minutes. It was certainly a misleading final.
Fresno State’s soft defense that is allowing 31.0 points per game this season will now get a huge test up against an explosive Hawaii offense that is putting up 36.6 points and 488.1 yards per game this season. Head coach Nick Rolovich has implemented the run-and-shoot offense, and his players are executing it to perfection now. It’s a veteran Hawaii team that returned 18 starters this year and is in Year 2 of the season.
Fresno State is 3-12 ATS in its last 15 games off an upset loss a home favorite. The Bulldogs are 5-17 ATS in their last 22 road games off a home loss. Hawaii is 24-10 ATS in its last 34 games after gaining 575 or more total yards in its previous game. Jeff Tedford is 0-8 ATS when he total is 63.5 to 70 in all games he has coached having never covered the spread in this situation. Tedford is also 12-26 ATS when the line is +3 to -3 in all games he has coached. Take Hawaii Saturday.
|11-02-19||Colorado v. UCLA -6.5||14-31||Win||100||68 h 35 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday No-Doubt Rout on UCLA -6.5
The UCLA Bruins have the same feel of last year. They started terribly last year and finished strong. And this year they are doing the same thing. They played as tough a schedule as anyone in the early going and opened 1-5. But they have since pulled outright upsets over Stanford and Arizona State each of the last two weeks in dominant fashion.
Now, at 3-5 the Bruins feel like they can make a run at a bowl game. They still have home games against Colorado and California left which are two games they should win. And I’m taking them this week against Colorado in a game they only have to win by a touchdown or more to cover this 6.5-point spread.
Two weeks ago, UCLA got Dorian Thompson-Robinson back at QB from injury after he had miss the previous two games in losses to Oregon State and Arizona. It made all the difference. UCLA blitzed Stanford 34-16 on the road and outgained the Cardinal by 257 yards while racking up 455 total yards.
Last week, I was on UCLA as 4-point home dogs to Arizona State. They stormed out to a 42-10 lead by the end of the third quarter before pulling their starters. Arizona State actually outscored UCLA 22-0 in the fourth quarter to make it a misleading 42-32 final. I think that works in our favor here. If UCLA had won 42-10 like they should have, the Bruins would be more than 6.5-point favorites here.
I also think Colorado is getting too much respect for its close 31-35 home loss to USC last week. Well, that was a USC team in a sandwich spot off a big game against Notre Dame the previous week, and with a game on deck against Oregon. The Trojans came out flat and it nearly cost them. But they rallied from a 10-point deficit in the final six minutes to win. Now, Colorado has to be deflated from that defeat because it was their chance to beat USC for the first time in school history. I think the Buffaloes now suffer a hangover from that loss.
It’s not like the Buffaloes were even competitive before that loss to USC, either. They had gone 0-3 SU & 0-3 ATS in their previous three games with an upset home loss to Arizona, and blowout road losses to Oregon (3-45) as 23-point dogs and at Washington State (10-41) as 13.5-point dogs. Simply put, this Colorado team just isn’t very good, going 1-4 in conference play and getting outscored by 15.8 points per game. UCLA is 3-2 SU & 4-1 ATS in conference play, outscoring opponents by 2.4 points per game.
Colorado is 0-11 ATS after failing to cover the spread in two of their last three games over the last three seasons. The Buffaloes are 1-12 ATS after playing a game where 60 or more points per scored over the last three years. The Buffaloes are 0-7-1 ATS in their last eight November games. The Bruins are 5-1-2 ATS in their last eight conference games. Colorado is 2-8 ATS in its last 10 conference games. Bet UCLA Saturday.
|11-02-19||Ole Miss +20 v. Auburn||Top||14-20||Win||100||66 h 36 m||Show|
25* SEC GAME OF THE YEAR on Ole Miss +20
This is a great spot to fade the Auburn Tigers. Auburn just suffered its dream-crushing loss to LSU last week. That was the 2nd SEC loss for the Tigers, who certainly won’t be winning the SEC West now. I think they suffer a hangover from that 20-23 defeat to LSU.
Not to mention, it was one of the most misleading finals of the season. LSU outgained Auburn by 221 yards. They moved the ball up and down the field on Auburn’s defense with 508 total yards. But they just couldn’t convert in the red zone, which was the only reason it was even close. Bo Nix had another terrible game completing just 15 of his 35 pass attempts for 157 yards. Now Auburn has to try and get back up off the mat and put away Ole Miss by three touchdowns or more. That’s a lot to ask
Ole Miss is coming off a bye week and will be rested and ready to go. It’s an Ole Miss team that is 3-1 ATS in its last four games overall and improving. Ole Miss lost 17-24 to Texas A&M last time out. But they were covering almost the entire way in that game as 6-point dogs.
Texas A&M got a 62-yard fumble recovery TD that gave them their first lead of the game, and they scored another TD with only 2:34 left. Ole Miss outgained Texas A&M by 65 yards and held them to 340 total yards. I’ve been very impressed with the improvement of this Ole Miss defense this season under new coordinator Mike MacIntyre. And the offense is coming around under Rich Rodriquez. They scored 31 points on Alabama and another 27 at Missouri in their two most recent road games.
I think the Rebels can go into Auburn and give the Tigers a run for their money this weekend given the favorable spot for the them off the bye week. And I know I’m going to get max effort out of this Ole Miss team because they sit at 3-5 and are desperate to make a bowl game after missing out on a bowl game by one win with a 5-7 record. This is kind of their ‘all in’ game this week.
Ole Miss has only lost one of its last eight meetings with Auburn by more than 18 points. And that was a 21-point loss a couple years ago. The Rebels haven’t lost by more than 21 points in any of the last 13 meetings in this series as well. As you can see, they have pretty much been competitive in every game with Auburn over the last 13 years, especially when factoring in this point-spread range as a level of competitiveness.
Plays against any team (Auburn) a good offensive team (34 PPG or more) against an average defensive team (21-28 PPG) after 7-plus games, after a loss by 3 points or less are 40-14 (74.1%) ATS since 1992. Bet Ole Miss Saturday.
|11-02-19||Pittsburgh v. Georgia Tech +7.5||20-10||Loss||-109||63 h 34 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Undervalued Underdog on Georgia Tech +7.5
The Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets are just 2-5 SU & 1-6 ATS this season. The betting public wants nothing to do with them. It’s a good time to ‘buy low’ on them, just as I did in their last game in their upset win at Miami as 18-point underdogs. And now they are coming off a bye week, so they will be rested and ready to go while taking away a ton of confidence from that Miami victory.
Georgia Tech has been more competitive than a 2-5 team. They were only outgained by more than 49 yards twice, which came against Clemson and North Carolina. They were only outgained by Temple by 18 yards in a misleading 2-24 road loss. They actually outgained Duke by 6 yards in a misleading 23-41 road loss. And they were only outgained by 12 yards by Miami, so there was nothing fluky about that 28-21 (OT) upset road win over the Hurricanes. It’s safe to say first-year head coach Geoff Collins is doing a great job, and teams with first-year head coaches benefit from bye weeks more than most.
No question the Pittsburgh Steelers have been impressive this season with a 5-3 record. But they aren’t the type of team you want to be laying big points with. In fact, each of Pitt’s last six games have all been decided by 7 points or less. They only have one win by more than 7 points this year, and that was a lackluster 20-10 home win over Ohio. What makes it tough to lay points with Pittsburgh is their weak offense, which is averaging just 21.0 points per game this season.
Pitt and Georgia Tech have met six times since the Panthers joined the ACC. The series is tied 3-3, but Pitt’s three wins have all come by 5 points or less. That’s why getting 7.5 points here with the Yellow Jackets at home is such a tremendous value, especially since they are off a bye week and Pitt is coming off a physical, taxing 12-16 home loss to Miami.
Pittsburgh is 15-30 ATS in its last 45 road games off a home loss. The Panthers are 13-29 ATS in their last 42 road games off a game where they committed three or more turnovers. Georgia Tech is 18-6 ATS in its last 24 games off an upset win as a road underdog. The Yellow Jackets are 19-7-1 ATS in their last 27 games following an ATS win. The underdog is 5-1 ATS in the last six meetings. Roll with Georgia Tech Saturday.
|11-02-19||Virginia Tech +17.5 v. Notre Dame||Top||20-21||Win||100||61 h 5 m||Show|
20* CFB Non-Conference GAME OF THE MONTH on Virginia Tech +17.5
The is a great spot to fade the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. This is a team that went 12-0 in the regular season last year and made the four-team playoff. They expected to get back. Now, after suffering their second loss of the season in a ugly 31-point loss at Michigan last week, their dreams of making the playoff have been crushed. I think they suffer a hangover effect this week as a result.
The Fighting Irish catch a Virginia Tech team coming off a bye and coming in with momentum. Everyone left the Hokies for dead after a 35-point loss to Duke to fall to 2-2. Since then, they’ve gone 3-0 with an upset road win over Miami and an upset home win over North Carolina. I think it puts to rest any of the doubts that people had about head coach Justin Fuente.
A big reason for the Hokies’ turnaround this season has been inserting QB Hendon Hooker into the lineup for that Miami game. He has run away with the QB job ever since and has led the Hokies to an average of 39.7 points per game in his three starts. Hooker has a 7-to-0 TD/INT ratio and is averaging 9.5 yards per attempt in those three wins and adds a running element, rushing for 156 yards and a score on 48 carries. He has everyone on the team believing in him, which is key.
Notre Dame just hasn’t been that impressive this season. They were either outgained or only outgained five of their seven opponents by 47 or fewer yards. The only exceptions were against terrible Bowling Green and New Mexico teams. They only outgained USC by 47 and Virginia by 5 yards at home. They only outgained Louisville by 31 yards on the road. They were outgained at Georgia and outgained by 257 yards at Michigan.
Plays against home teams (Notre Dame) - a good offensive team scoring 35 or more points per game, off a loss by 21 points or more are 68-32 (68%) ATS over the last 10 seasons. Justin Fuente is 10-2 ATS coming off a bye week in all games he has coached. Take Virginia Tech Saturday.
|11-01-19||Navy v. Connecticut +27.5||Top||56-10||Loss||-109||43 h 37 m||Show|
20* Navy/UConn ESPN 2 Friday No-Brainer on UConn +27.5
Navy is coming off a massive 41-38 home win over Tulane last week to move to 6-1 and put themselves in a great position to play for an AAC title. I think this is a big letdown spot for the Midshipmen, who will have a hard time getting up for UConn enough to win this game by four touchdowns or more, which is what it will take to cover this massive 27.5-point spread.
Connecticut is vastly improved this season under Randy Edsall. They were the youngest team in the country last year, and while still young, Randy Edsall has done a great job of developing his players and getting them to be much more competitive this year. They are 2-6 SU but have covered each of their last two games in impressive fashion.
Two weeks ago, UConn outgained Houston by 152 yards but lost 17-24 as 21-point home dogs. It was one of the most misleading finals of the season as the Huskies should have won that game outright. And last week they went on the road and blitzed UMass 56-35 as 9.5-point favorites and racked up 539 total yards in the win.
Navy isn’t the type of team to rub the opponent’s noses in the dirt. If they get up in this game, they aren’t going to keep trying to pour it on. Plus, their triple-option offense isn’t built for covering big spreads like this. They are built for long, extended drives on the ground that keep the clock moving. This is the biggest favorite role the Midshipmen have been in all season. They were 21.5-point favorites against Holy Cross in their opener to compare. I think the Midshipmen are being overvalued now due to their 6-1 record.
UConn is 20-8 ATS in its last 28 November home games. The Huskies are 12-2 ATS in their last 12 games after three consecutive games where they committed one or fewer turnovers. Navy is 1-5 ATS in its last six road games vs. a team with a losing home record. The Huskies will be highly motivated for this nationally televised home game and a chance to pull a huge upset against a 6-1 Navy team. We’ll get their best effort tonight. Bet UConn Friday.
|10-31-19||Georgia Southern v. Appalachian State UNDER 44.5||24-21||Loss||-105||19 h 37 m||Show|
15* CFB Thursday Total DOMINATOR on Georgia Southern/App State UNDER 44.5
Two teams who love to run the football and who both have good defenses square off Thursday in this Sun Belt showdown between Georgia Southern and Appalachian State. The clock will be running constantly due to both teams running the football. This game has all the makings of a low-scoring, defensive battle, especially since it will be windy (17 MPH-plus) with a good chance of rain during game time.
Georgia Southern runs the triple-option. The Eagles average 53 rushing attempts for 261 yards per game and 5.0 per carry. They only average 10 pass attempts per game. They’ll be up against a very good Appalachian State defense that is allowing 19 points, 326.6 yards per game and 5.0 yards per play. The Mountaineers are only giving up 13.5 points, 249.7 yards per game and 4.2 yards per play in their four conference games. They also only give up 140 rushing yards per game and 3.9 per carry on the season.
Appalachian State has a decent offense, there’s no question about that. They are good at running the football and also run it a lot, averaging 44 attempts for 249 yards per game and 5.7 per carry. But they have feasted on some bad run defenses this season. Georgia Southern has a good defense, giving up 342 yards per game and 5.2 per play, holding opponents to 80 yards per game and 0.9 per play less than their season averages. The Eagles have been very good against the run, giving up 134 rushing yards per game and 3.5 per carry.
The UNDER is 4-1 in the last five meetings in this series. They have combined for 48 or fewer points in all five meetings, and 44 or less in three of them. Georgia Southern has averaged just 15.8 points and 234.3 yards per game in their last four meetings with Appalachian State. The Eagles did hold the Mountaineers to just 288 total yards last year and forced five turnovers in an upset victory.
Georgia Southern is 9-0 UNDER In its last nine games after allowing 125 or less passing yards in its last game. The UNDER is 14-3 in Eagles last 17 games off a win by more than 20 points. The UNDER is 8-2 in Eagles last 10 Thursday games. The UNDER is 5-1 in Mountaineers last six conference games.
Plays on the UNDER on all teams where the total is between 42.5 to 49 (Appalachian State) - after allowing 14 points or less in two straight games against an opponent after allowing 7 points or les sin the first half of two straight games are 25-4 (86.2%) over the last five seasons. Take the UNDER in this game Thursday.
|10-26-19||Washington State +14.5 v. Oregon||Top||35-37||Win||100||51 h 15 m||Show|
20* Washington State/Oregon ESPN Late-Night BAILOUT on Washington State +14.5
The Oregon Ducks are coming off a massive comeback road win over Washington last week. The Ducks trailed that game by double-digits most the way before coming on strong in the second half to escape with a victory from the jaws of defeat. I think they are now being overvalued off that huge win here laying more than two touchdowns to a good Washington State team. It’s also a sandwich spot with a road game at USC on deck.
Washington State put an end to a tough three-game losing streak with an emphatic 41-10 home win over Colorado last week. They blew late leads against both UCLA and Arizona State or they’d be 6-1 this season. I think the fact that they are only 4-3 has them undervalued this week.
Overlooking Washington State has been a regular occurrence every year for Oregon. It’s clear that the Cougars get up for this game more than the Ducks do, and Mike Leach has them figured out. Washington State is a perfect 9-0 ATS in the last nine meetings, covering the spread by a whopping 152 combined points in those nine meetings. That’s an average cover of 16.9 points per game. The Cougars have gone 4-0 SU & 4-0 ATS in their last four meetings with the Ducks and haven’t lost to them by more than 7 points in any of the last five meetings.
Washington State is 9-0 ATS vs. good passing teams that average 250 or more yards per game over the last three seasons. The Cougars are 7-0 ATS when the total is 63.5 to 70 over the last three years. Throw in the 9-0 ATS in the last nine meetings, and we have a combined 25-0 system backing the Cougars here. Roll with Washington State Saturday.
|10-26-19||Arizona State v. UCLA +4||32-42||Win||100||48 h 14 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday UPSET SHOCKER on UCLA +4
We saw last season the UCLA Bruins improve greatly as the season went on in Year 1 under Chip Kelly. And I think we will see the same thing in the second half this season as the Bruins try and chase down a bowl game after a slow start.
The biggest reason for UCLA’s slow start is the schedule. Their schedule ranks as the 6th-toughest in the country thus far. A big reason for that is a brutal non-conference schedule that featured Cincinnati, San Diego State and Oklahoma. They got off to a 1-5 start this season and had their stud QB in in Dorian Thompson-Robinson getting hurt.
Thompson-Robinson missed part of the Arizona loss and the entire Oregon State loss, which explains that defeat. But he returned against Stanford last week and led the Bruins to an impressive 34-16 road victory as 4-point dogs to the Cardinal. Now, UCLA has two winnable home games in a row coming up against ASU and Colorado, and if they can win those two games they’d get to 4-5 and in great shape for a bowl game. That is clearly the goal here.
I think Arizona State is one of the most overrated teams in the country. The Sun Devils are ranked No. 24 in the country and off to a 5-2 start this season. But they had a fluky win at Michigan State where they were outgained by 188 yards, they were upset by Colorado at home, they needed a last-second TD to beat Washington State at home, and they only beat Cal by 7 and Sacramento State by 12 as 35.5-point favorites. They are fortunate to be 5-2 to say the least.
Arizona State’s true colors showed last week in a 3-21 road loss to Utah where they managed just 136 yards of total offense. And it’s that dreadful offense that makes it hard for ASU to be laying points on the road here to UCLA, which has the better offense in this matchup, especially with a healthy DTR at QB. Arizona Stae is averaging just 22.1 points and 365 yards per game this season, including 12.3 points and 239 yards per game in their three road games.
The Sun Devils are 4-14 ATS in their last 18 road games after having won five or six of their last seven games coming in. The Bruins are 4-1-2 ATS in their last seven conference games. UCLA is 11-5 ATS in the last 16 meetings, including 6-2 ATS in the last eight home meetings. Take UCLA Saturday.
|10-26-19||Missouri v. Kentucky +10.5||7-29||Win||100||48 h 13 m||Show|
15* SEC PLAY OF THE DAY on Kentucky +10.5
The Missouri Tigers are notorious for beating up on bad teams and losing when they step up in class. But they even lost to a bad team last week, falling 14-21 as 21.5-point favorites at Vanderbilt. And there’s no way they should be laying double-digits on the road here against Kentucky.
I was very impressed with how well Kentucky played last week in a 21-0 loss at Georgia. They were only outgained by 99 yards by the Bulldogs. Three of Kentucky’s four losses have come on the road this season. They are 3-1 at home and should be 4-0 as they missed a chip shot field goal that would have likely given them the upset win over Florida. Instead, the Gators scored on the next play from scrimmage to win 29-21. If they can play Florida that tough at home, they certainly will have a chance to pull off the upset here against Missouri.
The weather is going to help the Wildcats, too. There is a 100% chance of precipitation. Kentucky wants to run the ball anyway with WR turned QB Lynn Bowden Jr. He rushed for 196 yards and two touchdowns against Arkansas two weeks ago. And last week he rushed for 99 yards on 17 carries against Georgia’s vaunted defense.
Missouri has faced the 77th-toughest schedule in the country this season. Kentucky has faced the 20th-toughest schedule according to Sagarin, a difference of 57 spots. So I think the Tigers are overrated and that showed last week in their upset loss at Vanderbilt. And Kentucky is underrated due to the difficulty of their schedule thus far.
Kentucky has Missouri’s number. The Wildcats are 3-1 SU & 4-0 ATS in the last four meetings. They pulled two outright upsets as more than a touchdown underdogs. I’m not so sure Missouri should even be favored in this game, let alone a double-digit favorite. The Tigers are 0-5 ATS in their last five road games vs. a team with a losing home record. The Wildcats are 4-0 ATS in their last four home games. Roll with Kentucky Saturday.
|10-26-19||Missouri v. Kentucky UNDER 45||7-29||Win||100||48 h 13 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Total DOMINATOR on Missouri/Kentucky UNDER 45
Forecasts are calling for 100% chance of precipitation in Lexington for this game between Kentucky and Missouri. As a result, I’ll back the UNDER in what will be a low-scoring game due to the poor weather, and the resulting game plans by both teams to almost exclusively run the football.
Kentucky wants to run the ball anyway with WR turned QB Lynn Bowden Jr. He rushed for 196 yards and two touchdowns against Arkansas two weeks ago. And last week he rushed for 99 yards on 17 carries against Georgia’s vaunted defense. Since Bowden Jr. took over at QB, the Wildcats have only passed the ball 28 times in two games, or an average of 14 attempts per game.
Missouri likes to run the football anyway, too. They average 44 rushing attempts per game compared to 32 passing attempts per game. Since both teams are going to be keeping the ball on the ground probably 75% to 80% of the time in this game due to weather, that’s going to keep the clock moving and benefit this UNDER greatly.
The UNDER is 4-0 in Kentucky’s last four games overall with combined scores of 41, 31, 44 and 21 points. The UNDER is 5-1 in Missouri’s last six games overall as they have a worse offense and a better defense than most were expecting coming into the season. These teams combined for just 29 points in their meeting last season, and a similar result can be expected here due to the weather.
Kentucky is 7-0 UNDER in weeks 5 through 9 over the last two seasons. The UNDER is 9-2 in Kentucky’s last 11 conference games. The UNDER is 7-2 in Tigers last nine conference games. The UNDER is 4-1 in the last five meetings. Bet the UNDER in this game Saturday.
|10-26-19||Penn State v. Michigan State +6.5||Top||28-7||Loss||-105||98 h 52 m||Show|
20* Big Ten GAME OF THE WEEK on Michigan State +6.5
This is a great spot to fade the Penn State Nittany Lions. We cashed with Michigan +9 over Penn State last week. And we’re fading them again this week for many of the season reasons. I believe the Nittany Lions are one of the most overrated teams in the country. They are undefeated and ranked No. 6 in the country and you’re paying a heavy price to back them now, so it’s time to ’sell high’.
It’s a tough spot for the Nittany Lions. They are coming off two huge night game victories on the road at Iowa and at home over Michigan. I question how much they have left in the tank. Now they face a rested, hungry Michigan State team that is coming off its bye week.
Everyone has left the Spartans for dead after back-to-back blowout road losses at Ohio State and at Wisconsin, and now it’s time to ‘buy low’ on them. They lost by 24 at Ohio State and 38-0 at Wisconsin. It was a 17-0 game at Wisconsin entering the 4th quarter, and they simply ran out of gas and gave up 21 points in the final period.
But now the Spartans are refreshed with two weeks off and back home. The Spartans are 3-1 at home this season with their only loss a fluky 7-10 loss to Arizona State. They outgained ASU by 188 yards in that game. They are outscoring opponents by 15.3 points and outgaining them by 182 yards per game at home this year.
Michigan State has outgained five of its seven opponents this season. Penn State has actually been outgained by 4 of their 7 opponents, which isn’t the sign of a 7-0 team. They were outgained by Pitt, Buffalo & Michigan at home, and they were also outgained at Iowa. They have only had to play two true road games all season, and one of those was at Maryland, which was essentially a home game for them.
Michigan State owns Penn State, going 5-1 SU & 5-1 ATS in its last six meetings with the Nittany Lions. The Spartans won outright as 13.5 & 9.5-point underdogs the last two years. And I fully expect them to win this game outright and hand the fraudulent Nittany Lions their first loss of the season. Make sure to sprinkle some on the money line, but we’ll take the +6.5 points for some insurance.
Plays on underdogs of 3.5 to 10 points (Michigan State) - off two consecutive losses by 10 points or more to conference opponents, in weeks 5 through 9 are 34-9 (79.1%) ATS over the last five seasons. Bet Michigan State Saturday.
|10-26-19||Auburn v. LSU UNDER 59.5||20-23||Win||100||44 h 15 m||Show|
15* Auburn/LSU CBS No-Brainer on UNDER 59.5
LSU has the best offense in school history this season. There’s no denying that. But they will finally get some resistance against the best defense they have faced all season. And as a result, I think this total of 59.5 between Auburn and LSU has been inflated here Saturday too much due to LSU’s offensive numbers up to this point.
Auburn’s defense gives up 17.1 points, 319 yards per game and 4.7 yards per play this season. They are holding opponents to 12.9 points, 93 yards per game and 1.3 yards per play less than their season averages. This is an elite Auburn defense that might have the best defensive line in the country.
LSU’s defense isn’t too shabby, either. The Tigers give up 20.0 points, 319 yards per game and 4.7 yards per play which is very similar to Auburn’s numbers. And the key here is that Auburn isn’t going to be able to match LSU score for score because freshman QB Bo Nix hasn’t played well on the big stage.
In Auburn’s three games against Oregon, Texas A&M & Florida, Nix has gone a combined 37-of-80 (46.2%) passing for 428 yards for an average of just 142.7 passing yards per game. Auburn’s only hope of keeping this game close is to run the ball and control the clock, which I think they will try and do, and that is going to favor the UNDER.
This has been an UNDER series. In fact, 52 of the last 53 meetings in this series have seen 59 or fewer combined points. That makes for a 52-1 system backing the UNDER pertaining to this 59.5-point total. Take the UNDER in this game Saturday.
|10-26-19||Tulane v. Navy UNDER 57.5||38-41||Loss||-105||44 h 14 m||Show|
15* AAC PLAY OF THE DAY on Tulane/Navy UNDER 57.5
Two familiar foes who love to run the football meet in a key AAC showdown when Navy hosts Tulane Saturday. I expect this to be a low-scoring game, and this total of 57.5 is simply too high. The clock will be moving constantly and both of these defenses are good enough to keep this game UNDER the number.
Navy is obviously a triple-option team still that runs the ball an average of 60 times per game. Tulane throws more than last year, but not that much more as they average 45 rushes per game. Navy averages 34 possession minutes per game as its key is to control the clock, and it has worked out well as the Midshipmen are greatly improved at 5-1 this season.
The biggest reason for Navy’s improvement has been their defense. They are only giving up 16.2 points per game, 282 yards per game and 4.6 yards per play, holding opponents to 8.6 points, 81 yards per game and 0.7 yards per play less than their season averages. They have been great at stopping the run, giving up just 97 rushing yards per game and 3.0 per carry and holding opponents to 64 rushing yards per game and 1.0 per carry less than their season averages.
Tulane boasts arguably the best defensive line in the AAC. That gives them a great chance of stopping Navy here. The Green Wave give up 23.1 points, 347 yards per game and 5.2 yards per play this season. They are giving up 142 rushing yards per game and 4.0 per carry, holding opponents to 41 rushing yards per game and 0.6 per carry less than their season averages.
Both of these teams are familiar with one another as this will be the 5th meeting in five years between these teams. That familiarity will help both in stopping the opposing offenses, which clearly favors the defenses. And all four previous meetings have seen 57 or fewer combined points and an average of just 45.3 combined points per game, which is roughly 12 points less than this 57.5-point total. Roll with the UNDER in this game Saturday.
|10-26-19||Virginia -3 v. Louisville||21-28||Loss||-110||44 h 14 m||Show|
15* ACC PLAY OF THE DAY on Virginia -3
Yes, I’m on Virginia again this week. And yes, it’s for many of the same reason. I really believe this is one of the better teams in the country and they should be 7-0, but since they are not they are still undervalued. I cashed in with them with ease over Duke in a 48-14 win as 3-point favorites last week. And I expect them to cover a similar spread this week against Louisville.
The reason I believe Virginia should be 7-0 is because they lost two games they should have won and are 5-2 instead. One was a 20-35 loss at Notre Dame as a 10.5-point dog. They led at halftime but committed five turnovers and gave the game away in the second half. They were only outgained by 5 yards by Notre Dame. The other was their 9-17 loss at Miami. They had six trips inside the Miami 25-yard line and came away with just three field goals, failing to score a single touchdown. So they basically gave both those games away.
This is a bad spot for Louisville. The Cardinals are coming off a 10-45 home loss to Clemson, and I think they could suffer a hangover from that defeat. They are pretty fortunate to be 4-3 this season because two of their wins came by a combined five points with their 41-39 win over Boston College and 62-59 win over Wake Forest. Their three losses all came by double-digits, including an 18-point home loss to Notre Dame to give them a common opponent.
The Cardinals didn’t play Notre Dame nearly as tough as Virginia did, and Virginia was on the road while Louisville was at home. Another common opponent is Florida State. Virginia beat Florida State 31-24 at home and outgained them by 86 yards, while Louisville lost 24-35 at Florida State and was outgained by 112 yards.
Virginia has the much superior defense in this matchup, and that’s another big reason I trust them more. The Cavaliers are only giving up 19.7 points, 270.3 yards per game and 4.3 yards per play. They are holding opponents to 5.7 points, 86 yards per game and 0.9 yards per play less than their season averages. Louisville gives up 33.4 points, 455.3 yards per game and 6.1 yards per play. Opponents are averaging 4.6 points, 42 yards per game and 0.3 yards per play more than their season averages on Louisville’s defense.
Louisville is 1-9 ATS vs. good offensive teams that score 31 or more points per game over the last two seasons. The Cavaliers are 8-1-2 ATS in their last 11 games after scoring more than 40 points in their previous game. The Cardinals are 1-9 ATS in their last 10 conference games. The Cavaliers are 4-1 ATS in the last five meetings. Bet Virginia Saturday.
|10-26-19||Nevada +14 v. Wyoming||Top||3-31||Loss||-106||43 h 45 m||Show|
20* Mountain West GAME OF THE WEEK on Nevada +14
The Wyoming Cowboys are one of the most fraudulent teams in college football. They are 5-2 this season but could easily be 2-5. Four of their five wins have come by 13 points or less with the only exception being a blowout win over a bad UNLV team. They beat Idaho by 5 as 27.5-point favorites and New Mexico by 13 as 17-point favorites. They should not be laying 14 points to Nevada here.
The numbers show that Wyoming is a fraud. The Cowboys have been outgained in six of their seven games this season, including by Texas State, Idaho, Tulsa and New Mexico, which are four bad teams. They are getting outgained by 47 yards per game on the season.
Nevada is one of the better teams in the Mountain West. They are 4-3 this season with their only losses coming to Oregon, Hawaii and Utah State. I know they have been going through a QB carousel, but I’m not too concerned about it because Wyoming has an awful offense that won’t be able to put away Nevada no matter who is under center.
Plays on road underdogs of 10.5 to 21 points (Nevada) - off one or more consecutive unders, an average offensive team (21 to 28 PPG) against a good offensive team (28-34 PPG) are 27-6 (81.8%) ATS over the last five seasons. The Cowboys are 1-6 ATS in their last seven vs. a team with a winning record. Take Nevada Saturday.
|10-26-19||Ohio v. Ball State -2.5||34-21||Loss||-109||43 h 44 m||Show|
15* MAC PLAY OF THE DAY on Ball State -2.5
Bettors just haven’t caught on with how good Ball State is this year because expectations were so low on them coming into the season. And bettors continue to give Ohio too much respect because the Bobcats were picked by many to win the MAC this year as expectations were high. Getting Ball State as only a 2.5-point home favorite over Ohio Saturday is a gift from oddsmakers.
It’s Ball State that is the team capable of winning the MAC this year. They have gone 4-3 SU & 5-2 ATS, including 3-0 SU & 3-0 ATS in MAC play. There were signs early in the season that this team was going to be good before we even got into conference play. They only lost by 10 at Indiana as 17.5-point dogs, and lost by 11 at NC State as 19-point dogs.
The Cardinals then opened MAC play with two straight outright road wins as underdogs over Northern Illinois and Eastern Michigan. Then they blew the doors off another MAC favorite in Toledo 52-14 at home last week. They put up 580 total yards on Toledo and held the Rockets to just 309 total yards, so it wasn’t a fluke.
Ohio is just 3-4 SU & 1-6 ATS this season, yet they continue to get respect from the books. Their three wins have come over Rhode Island, Buffalo (by 1) and Kent State (by 7). They lost on the road to Pitt and Marshall, were blasted by 25 at home by Lafayette in an upset, and were also upset by Northern Illinois at home. They gave up 39 points and 510 total yards to a bad NIU offense, while Ball State held NIU to 20 points and 388 yards to give them a common opponent.
The home team is 5-1 ATS in the last six meetings. It’s time for the Cardinals to exact some revenge on Ohio after getting blown out by them the last two seasons. Take Ball State Saturday.
|10-26-19||Iowa v. Northwestern +10.5||20-0||Loss||-115||41 h 44 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Early ANNIHILATOR on Northwestern +10.5
Everyone has left Northwestern for dead with their 1-5 start this season. This is exactly the time to ‘buy low’ on the Wildcats and head coach Pat Fitzgerald, who thrive in this underdog role with their backs against the wall.
The biggest reason for Northwestern’s struggles this season has been the schedule. In fact, Northwestern has faced the No. 1 toughest schedule in the entire country according to Sagarin. They have played Stanford, Wisconsin and Nebraska on the road, and Ohio State and Michigan State at home. That is simply murderer’s row.
The Wildcats have had an extra day to recover and regroup from their 3-52 home loss to Ohio State last Friday. Now, they face an Iowa Hawkeyes team that is more on their level. And it’s a Hawkeyes team that they own, going 3-0 SU & 3-0 ATS in the last three meetings with two outright wins as double-digit underdogs.
The Hawkeyes feasted on an early easy schedule of Miami Ohio, Rutgers, Iowa State and Middle Tennessee en route to a 4-0 start, and they were fortunate to beat Iowa State. But reality has set in since they got into Big Ten play, going 1-2 SU & 0-3 ATS with their only win coming against Purdue 26-20 as 17.5-point favorites.
Iowa’s offensive line is a mess right now due to injury and poor performance. They are averaging just 57.7 rushing yards per game and 1.9 yards per carry in Big Ten play. Their inability to run the ball is putting too much pressure on QB Nate Stanley, who is also without his favorite receiver in Brandon Smith (33 receptions, 407 yards, 4 TD) due to injury. You just can’t trust this Iowa offense to be laying double-digits on the road.
Northwestern is 21-7 ATS in its last 28 games following a double-digit home loss. The Wildcats are 12-3 ATS in their last 15 games after scoring less than 20 points in their previous game. Northwestern is 6-0 ATS when playing against a team that wins 60% to 75% of their games over the last two years. The Hawkeyes are 1-4 ATS in their last five road games. Bet Northwestern Saturday.
|10-24-19||SMU -13 v. Houston||Top||34-31||Loss||-110||58 h 57 m||Show|
20* SMU/Houston ESPN Thursday No-Brainer on SMU -13
The SMU Mustangs are one of the best teams in the country that nobody is talking about. They are 7-0 SU & 6-1 ATS this season while covering the spread by a combined 81 points. They are covering by an average of 11.6 points per game, which really shows how underrated this team has been.
Now, SMU is laying less than two touchdowns to a Houston team that is in rebuilding mode. We’ll gladly back the Mustangs in what will be yet another blowout victory in their favor tonight. This is their chance to show the world how good they are with a standalone week night ESPN game, so I’m not worried at all about them having a letdown.
Houston pretty much sealed its fate when all-everything QB D’Eriq King and his favorite WR in Keith Corbin decided to redshirt after four games this season. Houston has gone 2-1 since, but just 1-2 ATS and their two wins were against North Texas and UConn. They lost by 15 at home to Cincinnati and will suffer a similar fate here against SMU.
Last week, Houston barely beat UConn 24-17 as 21.5-point favorites. That’s a UConn team that is one of the worst in all of college football. And Houston really should have lost that game as they were dominated in the box score. The Cougars managed just 286 total yards and gave up 438 yards to the Huskies, getting outgained by a whopping 152 yards.
SMU boasts a high-powered offense led by Texas transfer Shane Buechele at quarterback. They re putting up 44.3 pints and 521.1 yards per game this season. I expect them to match or exceed their season average considering they will be up against a soft Houston defense that allows 30.7 points and 473.9 yards per game this season. SMU has scored at least 41 points in six straight games, including against some good defenses in TCU, Temple and Tulsa.
I have been impressed with the improvement of SMU’s defense as much as anything this season, especially under an offensive-minded head coach like Sonny Dykes. They hold opponents to 370 yards per game and 5.0 yards per play, limiting them to 27 yards per game and 0.4 yards per play less than their season averages. So, this is an above-average defense coupled with one of the best offenses in the country. I don’t see any way Houston gets to 30 points in this one, which is at least what it will take to cover this spread.
The Cougars are 1-6 ATS in their last seven vs. a team with a winning record. Houston is 0-4 ATS in its last four conference games. Bet SMU Thursday.
|10-19-19||Nevada +21 v. Utah State||10-36||Loss||-109||65 h 45 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Late-Night BAILOUT on Nevada +21
The Utah State Aggies are getting treated like the team they were last year and not like the team they are this year by oddsmakers. They had one of their best seasons in program history last year and lost head coach Matt Wells to Texas Tech as a result. Former Utah State head coach Gary Anderson has returned to the program, and the cupboard was left bare as the Aggies returned only nine starters this year.
Utah State is off to a 3-2 start this season, but it only has one win by more than 10 points, and that came against FCS opponent Stony Brook. In no way should the Aggies be favored by three touchdowns over Nevada here. They only beat a bad Colorado State team 34-24 as 23.5-point favorites in their last home game, and they lost 6-42 at LSU last time out. They simply aren’t nearly as good as they were last year.
Nevada returned from its bye with a solid 41-38 home win against an improved San Jose State team last week. Nevada was up 24-3 before taking its foot off the gas, so that game was a bigger blowout than the final score showed. And it was the first start from former Florida State transfer Malik Henry at quarterback, and he was brilliant in leading the Wolf Pack to 41 points.
Henry was the #2 dual-threat QB in the country coming out of high school, but he had some depression issues at FSU that held him back. He has found a home here in Nevada now, and things are looking up for him after a great start last week. Henry threw for 352 yards and a touchdown against SJSU last week. Look for him to try and match Utah State QB Jordan Love score for score in this one.
Nevada has had Utah State’s number in recent years. Nevada is 8-3 SU in the last 11 meetings with its three losses coming by 4, 4 and 2 points. As you can see, Utah State hasn’t beaten Nevada by more than 4 points in any of the last 11 meetings, making for a perfect 11-0 system backing the Wolf Pack pertaining to this 21-point spread. The underdog is 5-0 ATS in the last five meetings. Bet Nevada Saturday.
|10-19-19||Florida State v. Wake Forest -1.5||20-22||Win||100||62 h 0 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday No-Doubt Rout on Wake Forest -1.5
I believe the Wake Forest Demon Deacons got the humbling they needed last week against Louisville. They opened 5-0 before losing to the Cardinals 59-62 at home last week. It was a game they deserved to win as they outgained the Cardinals by 148 yards. But because they lost that game and they aren’t 6-0 now, we are getting the Demon Deacons at only -1.5 when they would probably be more than 3-point favorites had they won that game.
Florida State’s biggest rival is Clemson, and they lost to the Tigers 14-45 last week. I think the Seminoles suffer a hangover effect from that defeat and won’t be up for Wake Forest this week as a result. Clemson outgained the Seminoles by 299 yards and held them to just 253 yards while forcing four turnovers in the win.
I realize Wake Forest QB Jamie Newman was knocked out of the Louisville game with a shoulder injury. However, I don’t think there’s any difference between Newman and backup Sam Hartman, who gained starting experience for the Demon Deacons last year and is ready to go if called upon. Hartman went 9-of-15 for 172 yards and two touchdowns while also rushing for a score in place of an injured Newman last week and nearly led the comeback against Louisville.
The Seminoles will have their hands full against an explosive Wake Forest offense that puts up 39.7 points, 540 yards per game and 6.3 yards per play this season. They have a balanced attack with 209 rushing yards and 331 passing yards per game. They are very tough to tame, which is bad news for a FSU defense that allows 32.2 points and 464 yards per game.
Florida State is 1-8 ATS after playing three straight conference games over the last three seasons. The Seminoles are 0-7 ATS vs. excellent passing teams with a completion percentage of 62% or better over the last three years. Florida State is 0-3-1 ATS in its last four road games. The Demon Deacons are 4-1 ATS in their last five games following a loss. The home team is 6-2-1 ATS in the last nine meetings. Bet Wake Forest Saturday.
|10-19-19||Michigan +9.5 v. Penn State||Top||21-28||Win||100||62 h 59 m||Show|
20* Michigan/Penn State ABC No-Brainer on Michigan +9.5
I’m back to fading Penn State again this week. I must really love misery. But in all seriousness, this line has gotten out of hand. It’s up to +9.5 now after opening around +7. I would consider my loss on Iowa +3.5 last week a bad beat, and the Nittany Lions are getting too much respect for that win.
The Hawkeyes outgained the Nittany Lions by 62 yards. But they missed a field goal and came up short on a 2-point conversion to lose by 5. They also fumbled a handoff inside their own 20 to gift wrap Penn State a touchdown. And Iowa also failed to score a touchdown from first and goal from the 3-yard line. Iowa was the right side in that game.
Penn State is 6-0, but they have been outgained in three of their six games. Not only were they outgained by Iowa, but they were also outgained at home by both Buffalo and Pitt. I really think this is one of the most overrated teams in the country. You’re going to hear a lot about Penn State playing at night and in a white out this week. And it seems like everyone is on the Nittany Lions because of it. I just think this is a great time to go contrarian.
Michigan can still achieve all of its goals if it wins out. I think we’re getting extra value on the Wolverines after their 42-25 win over Illinois last week. The Wolverines were up 28-0 before taking their foot off the gas. It’s like they were just ready to get to the Penn State game at halftime and forgot to play the second half.
Penn State’s offense just doesn’t have the firepower to put Michigan away by double-digits. Pitt held them to 17 points and Iowa held them to 17 points this season. And Michigan has as good or better defense than both of those teams. The Wolverines only allow 17.5 points, 283 yards per game this season and 4.2 yards per play this season. I expect this to be an ugly, low-scoring Big Ten game. So getting 9.5 points is a tremendous value.
Michigan beat Penn State 42-7 last year and held them to just 186 total yards. They outgained the Nittany Lions by 217 yards in the win. The Wolverines are now 4-1 SU & 4-1 ATS in the last 5 meetings. Penn State may ultimately win this game, but they have to beat us by double-digits to get the cover, and I just don’t think they can.
Plays against home favorites of 3.5 to 10 points (Penn State) - after scoring and allowing 17 points or less in their last game are 29-6 (82.9%) ATS over the last five seasons. Jim Harbaugh is 9-1 ATS vs. good rush defenses that allow 2.75 or fewer yards per carry in all games he has coached. The Nittany Lions are 1-6 ATS in their last seven games following an ATS win. Roll with Michigan Saturday.
|10-19-19||Kansas +21.5 v. Texas||48-50||Win||100||62 h 30 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Undervalued Underdog on Kansas +21.5
The Texas Longhorns are in a hangover spot here from their 27-34 loss to rival Oklahoma last week. Their dreams of playing in the four-team playoff have been crushed now with losses to Oklahoma and LSU, and it’s tough to get back up off the mat after such a crushing defeat. I look for them to go through the motions this week and fail to cover this massive 21.5-point spread against Kansas.
I’ve been saying Texas is overrated since before the season, and it has proven to be true. The Longhorns were fortunate to only lose 27-34 to Oklahoma. They were outgained by 201 yards by the Sooners and outgained by 3.5 yards per play in that game. Oklahoma averaged 7.7 yards per play while Texas only averaged 4.2 yards per play and was sacked nine times. But Oklahoma had two turnovers deep in Texas territory which kept the game closer than the final score.
Now Kansas and Texas have a common opponent in Oklahoma. Kansas only lost 20-45 at home to Oklahoma and was only outgained by 191 yards in that game, covering the 32-point spread. And now the Jayhawks have had two weeks to get ready for Texas after having their bye last week. I think we get a big effort out of the Jayhawks because of it.
Kansas has been a big thorn in Texas’ side in recent years. The Jayhawks are 3-0 ATS in the last three meetings, pulling the 24-21 upset as 23.5-point dogs in 2016, only losing 27-42 as 32-point road favorites in 2017, and only losing 17-24 as 15.5-point home dogs last year. The Jayhawks just seem to get up for Texas, while the Longhorns consistently overlook them.
Texas is 0-6 ATS in home games with a total of 56.5 to 63 over the last three seasons. Kansas is 6-1 ATS in its last seven games following a loss. The Jayhawks are 4-0 ATS in their last four road games vs. a team with a winning record. Roll with Kansas Saturday.
|10-19-19||Baylor v. Oklahoma State -3||Top||45-27||Loss||-110||113 h 30 m||Show|
25* Big 12 GAME OF THE YEAR on Oklahoma State -3
Of all the Power 5 teams that are still undefeated, both Baylor and Minnesota are clearly the two most overrated. They are overrated because both have feasted on easy schedules, and both are very fortunate to be 6-0. The Bears should have lost to both Iowa State and Texas Tech, winning those two games by a combined 5 points. And their other four wins have come against Stephen F. Austin, Rice, UTSA and Kansas State.
Baylor has played the 96th-toughest schedule this season according to the Sagarin ratings. Oklahoma State has played the 36th-toughest schedule. That’s a 60-spot difference in strength of schedule. He actually has Oklahoma State rated higher than Baylor despite being 4-2, and I agree with him. I think we are getting the Cowboys at a massive discount as only 3-point home favorites over the Bears here.
Oklahoma State’s two losses have both come on the road to Texas (30-36) and Texas Tech (35-45). That was not a bad loss to Texas, and the loss at Texas Tech was very fluky considering the Cowboys lost the turnover battle 5-0. And I loved how QB Spencer Sanders took all the blame in the loss, saying he was solely responsible for the five turnovers and has to be better. Keep in mind Baylor needed overtime to beat Texas Tech at home.
Now, the Cowboys are in a great spot here coming off their bye week and returning home. They have only played two home games compared to four road games this year, while Baylor has played four home games compared to only two road games. And the Cowboys will be highly motivated to stay in Big 12 title contention in this must-win situation for them.
There’s on injury for Baylor that is flying under the radar and not getting priced into the line. LB Clay Johnson suffered a season-ending knee injury against Texas Tech last week. Johnson leads the team with 58 tackles, and second place on the team has 30 tackles. He is the heart and soul of the defense. Now the Bears have to try and stop a Oklahoma State rushing attack that averages 279 rushing yards per game and 5.6 per carry without Johnson. Expect Chuba Hubbard (1,094 yards, 13 TD, 6.8/carry) to have a massive day on the ground against this Baylor defense Saturday.
Over the last 10 years, when Oklahoma State has been unranked and favored at home against a ranked team, they have gone a perfect 3-0 SU & 3-0 ATS with all three wins coming by double-digits. The Cowboys are favored for good reason despite being unranked, but they aren’t favored by as much as they should be. Baylor is 1-9 ATS in its last 10 trips to Oklahoma State.
The Cowboys are 9-0 ATS in their last nine home games after a game where they committed five or more turnovers. The Cowboys are 7-0 ATS in their last seven vs. a team with a winning record. The Cowboys are 5-0 ATS in their last five home games. These three trends combine for a perfect 21-0 system backing the Cowboys. Bet Oklahoma State Saturday.
|10-19-19||Duke v. Virginia -3||Top||14-48||Win||100||58 h 59 m||Show|
20* ACC GAME OF THE MONTH on Virginia -3
I really like the spot for Virginia here. They are coming off back-to-back road losses to Notre Dame and Miami in games they felt like they should have won. I had Virginia in both of those games and felt like I deserved to win them both as well. Now the Cavaliers are back home here and still believe they can win the Coastal, but they certainly need to beat Duke if they are going to accomplish that goal.
The Cavaliers were getting +10.5 at Notre Dame and lost by 15. They were winning outright at halftime, and they were only outgained by 5 yards in that game, but they lost by 15 because they committed five turnovers. Then last week they were getting +3 at Miami. They outgained the Hurricanes by 61 yards and shut down the Miami offense. But Virginia left a ton of points in the board. The Cavaliers had six trips inside the Miami 25-yards line and managed just 9 points in a 9-17 loss. They failed to score a single touchdown.
Now, it’s a great time to buy low on the Cavaliers after those two losses where they probably deserved to win both and should be 6-0. And it’s time to sell high on Duke, which is coming off a misleading 41-23 home win over Georgia Tech, which is the worst team in the ACC. The Blue Devils won by 18 and covered the 17.5-point spread despite getting outgained by the Yellow Jackets.
This will easily be Duke’s toughest test since their 42-3 loss to Alabama in the opener. Their last five games since have come against NC A&T, Middle Tennessee, VA Tech, Pitt and Georgia Tech. And it’s worth noting that Duke lost at home to Pitt 30-33, while Virginia won 30-14 at Pitt to give these teams a common opponent.
Virginia owns Duke, going 4-0 SU & 4-0 ATS in the last four meetings while winning all four games by 7 points or more. And those were some pretty poor Virginia teams, while this 2019 version is the best team they have had in years. Duke is a team that likes to run the ball, averaging 183 yards per game on the ground. They’ll get plenty of resistance from a Virginia defense that gives up just 90 rushing yards per game and 2.7 per carry. That makes this a great matchup for the Cavaliers. Take Virginia Saturday.
|10-19-19||Georgia Tech +18.5 v. Miami-FL||28-21||Win||100||55 h 31 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Early ANNIHILATOR on Georgia Tech +18.5
The betting public wants nothing to do with the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets right now. They are 1-5 SU & 0-6 ATS this season, failing to cover a spread yet. It was easy to see this was going to be a rebuilding year for the Yellow Jackets this season as they made the transition from Paul Johnson’s triple-option to Geoff Collins’ pro-style offense.
After a slow start, I have seen some real signs of progress by the Yellow Jackets, and I think it’s time to ‘buy low’ on them now. Two of their last three losses have been very misleading. They lost 2-24 at Temple but were only outgained by 18 yards. And last week they lost 23-41 at Duke, but actually outgained the Blue Devils by 6 yards. If they can finish equal in stats against those two teams, they certainly can hang with Miami this week.
I think it’s a great time to ’sell high’ on Miami off its misleading 17-9 home win over Virginia last week. The Hurricanes deserved to lose that game as they were outgained by 62 yards by Virginia. The Cavaliers had six trips inside the Miami 25-yard line, but only managed 9 points and didn’t score a single touchdown. I think the Hurricanes are now in a big letdown spot off that primetime win on National TV.
And there were some real concerns about Miami coming into that Virginia game. They had lost 35-42 at home to a Virginia Tech team that looked like they quit the previous week. And before that, they only beat Central Michigan 17-12 at home as 30.5-point favorites. This still isn’t a very good Miami team, and certainly not the type of team that should be laying a huge number to Georgia Tech here.
Georgia Tech hasn’t lost by more than 17 points to Miami in any of the last eight meetings in this series, making for a perfect 8-0 system backing the Yellow Jackets pertaining to this 18.5-point spread. The Hurricanes are 2-9 ATS in their last 11 games after scoring less than 20 points in their previous game.
Plays on any team (Georgia Tech) - after five or more consecutive losses against the spread against an opponent that is off one or more consecutive ATS wins are 41-13 (75.9%) ATS over the last five seasons. This system just shows how profitable it is to back a team on a long ATS losing streak against a team on a winning ATS streak. Take Georgia Tech Saturday.
|10-18-19||UNLV +16 v. Fresno State||Top||27-56||Loss||-105||56 h 17 m||Show|
20* UNLV/Fresno State MWC Late-Night BAILOUT on UNLV +16
The Fresno State Bulldogs are one of the most overrated teams in the country this season. That’s because they covered a combined 20 spread over the previous two seasons. But that was a veteran team, and the Bulldogs are a young, inexperienced team now that returned only nine starters this year. This is clearly a rebuilding season, but they keep getting priced like they are one of the best teams in the Mountain West.
The Bulldogs are 2-3 SU & 1-3-1 ATS this season. Their only two wins both came against worse teams than UNLV and both by 14 points or less. They beat Sacramento State 34-20 as 24.5-point home favorites and New Mexico State 30-17 as 21-point road favorites. This game will be decided by 14 points or less as well.
UNLV has really impressed me in its last two games. The Rebels hung tough with Boise State for four quarters. They were only down 18 with two minutes left but missed an extra point. Then Boise State returned the onside kick inside the 10 and punched it in for a TD late to win by 25 and cover the 24.5-point spread.
Last week, UNLV’s 34-10 win at Vanderbilt as 16-point underdogs was no fluke. The Rebels outgained the Commodores 388 to 306 and were only +1 in turnovers. That victory certainly gives this team a lot of confidence heading into this showdown with Fresno State.
UNLV is a good rushing team that averages 180 rushing yards per game. The Rebels ran for 206 yards on Vanderbilt last week, and they should find plenty of success on the ground against a Fresno State defense that is allowing 156 rushing yards per game. They gave up 175 rushing yards to USC, 146 to Minnesota and 340 to Air Force last week in their 24-43 loss to the Falcons.
In their last trip to Fresno State, UNLV won outright 26-16 as 21.5-point underdogs in 2017. Plays on road underdogs of 10.5 to 21 points (UNLV) - off one or more consecutive unders, an average offensive team (21 to 28 PPG) against a good offensive team (28 to 34 PPG) are 26-5 (83.9%) ATS over the last five seasons. Tony Sanchez is 16-7 ATS as a road underdog as the coach of UNLV. The Rebels are 11-5 ATS in their last 16 road games. Bet UNLV Friday.
|10-18-19||Ohio State v. Northwestern UNDER 49.5||52-3||Loss||-105||55 h 53 m||Show|
15* Ohio State/Northwestern Big Ten Total DOMINATOR on UNDER 49.5
The Northwestern Wildcats grow the grass on their home field in Evanston as long as possible. They do this to slow down the opposition, and it will come into play here against Ohio State. The Buckeyes won’t be as fast as they usually are on this grass field. It will give the Wildcats a chance to hang with them as their defense holds the Buckeyes to their lowest point total of the season Friday.
The Wildcats have one of the worst offenses in the country. They are scoring just 14.4 points per game, averaging 293 yards per game and their 3.9 yards per play ranks dead last in the entire country. I would be surprised if they score more than 10 points in this game, which would mean that Ohio State would need more than 38 points to beat us, and I don’t think they will get there.
Northwestern has always been a great defensive team under Pat Fitzgerald. That has been the case against this year as the Wildcats are only giving up 19.8 points per game, 319 yards per game and 4.8 yards per play. They are holding opponents to 7.8 points per game and 67 yards per game less than their season averages. In their last two games, they held Nebraska to 13 points and held Wisconsin’s offense to only 10 points. The Badgers got two defensive touchdowns in their 24-15 victory over the Wildcats.
Ohio State’s defense has been lights out this season, which is why I can’t see Northwestern scoring more than 10 points. The Buckeyes only give up 8.8 points per game, 234 yards per game and 3.7 yards per play. This is the best defense the Wildcats have faced this season, and they could easily get shut out. Both teams love to run the football as the Buckeyes average 46 rush attempts per game while the Wildcats average 42, which should keep the clock moving.
Ohio State is 7-0 UNDER after gaining 475 or more total yards in three straight games over the last two seasons. Northwestern is 10-1 UNDER after playing a road game over the last three seasons. The UNDER is 6-1 in Buckeyes last seven games on grass. The UNDER is 42-14-1 in Wildcats last 57 home games. Take the UNDER in this game Friday.
|10-17-19||UCLA v. Stanford -6.5||Top||34-16||Loss||-116||31 h 17 m||Show|
20* Pac-12 GAME OF THE WEEK on Stanford -6.5
The Stanford Cardinal have turned their season around. After opening 1-3 against a brutal schedule with losses at USC, at UCF and at home to Oregon, they have bounced back nicely in their last two games. They won 31-28 at Oregon State followed by a 23-13 home win over Washington as 12.5-point underdogs. Now they’ve had two weeks off to get ready for UCLA tonight.
I realize Stanford is down to its third-string quarterback, but that is factored into the line. And these injuries have brought the team closer together. I think the Cardinal are way undervalued as a result of these QB injuries and some other injuries along the offensive line. The quotes coming from the players and coaches right now make me want to get behind them.
A sophomore from Alabama, QB Jack West took all the reps in practice Monday after playing the final 10 minutes against Washington after backup Davis Mills went out. West took a lot of reps as the primary backup in spring ball than he normally would because of the situation with starter KJ Costello. He has continued to get additional reps the past few weeks, too.
“I had a great conversation with Jack at the end of training camp,” head coach David Shaw said. “I said I have no issues with him playing. If he plays, I know we can run anything in the playbook. It was a compliment to how hard he has worked. If he goes out to play, we’ll be able to run the whole playbook.”
Stanford also has some injuries on the offensive line as they finished the game playing three true freshmen. The 11-day break could mean that some of those injuries heal, but in a strange way, the injuries have brought Stanford’s players closer together.
“It hasn’t helped up but it has rallied us,” running back Cameron Scarlett said. “Seeing a guy go down, you want to do all you can to make sure you make a play for him. It’s definitely rallied us. We knew adversity was going to strike at some point this season. Didn’t think it would strike this hard, this fast, but we just have to respond and keep it moving.”
Scarlett has been a big reason why the Cardinal have overcome some of the injury issues. He rushed for 97 yards in the loss to Oregon, 92 yards in the win over Oregon State, and then piled up a career-best 157 yards on 33 carries against a good Washington defense.
UCLA is quickly making a case to be the worst team in the Pac-12. They came into the season overrated, and they have really disappointed by going 1-5 SU & 1-4-1 ATS. Their only win came when they trailed by 32 points at Washington State, so they easily could be 0-6. Their 31-48 home loss to Oregon State last time out really showed that this team is pretty much quitting on head coach Chip Kelly.
Stanford owns UCLA, going 11-0 SU & 9-1-1 ATS in the last 11 meetings with 10 of those wins coming by 7 points or more. The Cardinal are 18-6-2 ATS in their last 26 games vs. a team with a losing record. Bet Stanford Thursday.
Note: Stanford is down to -3 as of 2:00 EST Thursday afternoon. It's still a 20* play at that number.
|10-16-19||South Alabama v. Troy UNDER 57.5||Top||13-37||Win||100||8 h 22 m||Show|
20* South Alabama/Troy ESPN 2 Total DOMINATOR on UNDER 57.5
In-state rivals Troy and South Alabama meet tonight in Sun Belt action. I expect this to be a low-scoring affair and stay UNDER the posted total of 57.5. Both teams come in on extra rest and preparation time, which favors the defenses. South Alabama hasn’t played in 13 days, while Troy hasn’t played in 11 days.
The UNDER is 3-1-1in five meetings over the last five seasons. But all five meetings have seen 55 or fewer combined points, so the OVER would be 5-0 on this 57.5-point total. They have averaged just 42.2 combined points per game in those five meetings, which is roughly 15 points less than this posted total. The last two meetings in Troy have seen 27 and 42 combined points.
South Alabama is a bad offensive football team. The Jaguars average just 16.8 points and 319 yards per game this season. I just don’t see them scoring too many points here to contribute to the over. They are 0-3 on the road and scoring 13.7 points per game and averaging 294 yards per game. However, they do have an improved defense this year, giving up 29.3 points and 400 yards per game.
Troy’s numbers are skewed to the over due to two games against good offensive teams in Southern Miss and Arkansas State. They combined for 89 points with Southern Miss and 93 points with Arkansas State. However, their other three games have all seen 57 or fewer combined points. They combined for 57 with Campbell, 42 with Akron and 52 with Missouri. And this South Alabama offense is one of the worst they’ve been up against this season, comparable to Akron and Campbell.
The UNDER is 5-1 in South Alabama’s six games this season with combined scores of 56 or fewer in all six games. South Alabama is 10-2 UNDER in its last 12 games after scoring 7 points or less in two straight games. The UNDER is 4-1 in Jaguars last five road games. The UNDER is 9-2 in Trojans last 11 games after gaining less than 100 rushing yards in their previous game. Bet the UNDER in this game Wednesday.
|10-12-19||Penn State v. Iowa +3.5||Top||17-12||Loss||-108||72 h 10 m||Show|
25* Big Ten GAME OF THE YEAR on Iowa +3.5
The Iowa Hawkeyes finally got the humbling they needed last week on the road at Michigan. They lost that game 10-3 as their offense gave the game away. They committed 4 turnovers, including 3 interceptions from senior QB Nathan Stanley. Stanley is the kind of QB I trust to bounce back from such a bad performance. He still has a 60-to-19 TD/INT ratio for his career.
Now the Hawkeyes return home where they are 3-0 and winning by 33.0 PPG. This will be a night game for the Hawkeyes at Kinnick Stadium, which is one of the best atmospheres in the entire country. They have knocked off Michigan and Ohio State in recent years outright as home underdogs. In fact, Iowa has covered 70% of the time as a home underdog since 2000 in 22 attempts.
And Iowa wants revenge from a pair of tough losses to Penn State over the last two years. They lost 19-21 at home to Penn State as 12.5-point dogs in 2017. And last year they lost 24-30 at Penn State as 5-point dogs in a game they dominated everywhere but the scoreboard. And those were better Penn State teams than this 2019 version.
Yes, the Nittany Lions are 5-0, but they are a fraudulent 5-0. They have played four home games and just one road game at Maryland, which is essentially a home game for them as they had a ton of fans there. They have played the 86th-toughest schedule in the country. And that easy schedule is a big reason why I’m fading them this week.
The Nittany Lions were outgained by 72 yards at home by Buffalo in a very misleading final. They were also outgained at home by Pittsburgh in a lackluster 17-10 win. Pittsburgh is a poor man’s Iowa. This will be by far their toughest test of the season. Iowa has already played two very difficult games on the road against Iowa State and Michigan, so they are battle-tested.
Iowa has one of the best defenses in the country giving up just 8.8 points and 254 yards per game. The Nittany Lions are 0-17 ATS in their last 17 games vs. teams who give up 12 or fewer points per game. Penn State is 6-23 ATS in its last 29 road games after allowing 9 points or less last game. Iowa is 20-6 ATS in its last 26 vs. good offensive teams that score 37 or more points per game.
Plays against any team (Penn State) - after beating the spread by 40 or more points total in their last five games, a top-level team winning 80% or more of their games when playing a good team that wins 60% to 80% of their games are 42-13 (76.4%) ATS over the last five seasons. Bet Iowa Saturday.
|10-12-19||Nebraska +7.5 v. Minnesota||7-34||Loss||-109||72 h 8 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Undervalued Underdog on Nebraska +7.5
The Minnesota Golden Gophers are probably the most fraudulent 5-0 team in the country. Four of their five wins have come by 7 points or less, and the lone exception was a 23-point home win over Illinois last week in which the Fighting Illini were decimated by injuries. So, getting 7.5 points here with Nebraska is a tremendous value considering this is easily the toughest team they have faced yet.
Minnesota’s five wins have come against South Dakota State, Fresno State, Georgia Southern, Purdue and Illinois. They could easily be 2-3 instead of 5-0, too. They have played the 84th-toughest schedule in the country. I think they get a reality check here Saturday against the Cornhuskers, who are in must-win mode if they want to win the Big Ten West.
Nebraska is 4-2, but should be 5-1. They blew a 17-0 lead at Colorado and lost 31-34. Their other loss came to Ohio State, who may be the best team in the country. It’s a Nebraska team that has put up good numbers averaging 5.9 yards per play on offense and giving up only 5.1 yards per play on defense. And they’ve played the much tougher schedule having already played Ohio State.
I realize QB Adrian Martinez is questionable, but that is factored into the line. And it’s not like Martinez has been a world beater. Nebraska has a nice safety blanked in backup QB Noah Vedral, who spent time with Scott Frost at UCF and really knows the playbook. Vedral led the game-winning drive against Northwestern last week after Martinez left with injury. Not to mention another backup in Luke McCaffrey, Christian’s brother, is one of the top athletes on the team. The Huskers will be just fine if Martinez cannot go.
Minnesota had 239 more yards than Illinois last week, a banged up Illinois team. Well, Nebraska had 391 more yards than Illinois when they played them on the road earlier this season, which shows they are probably the better of these two teams, yet they are catching more than a touchdown. I simply believe Nebraska is undervalued right now after starting 1-5 ATS on the season, and they had a big second half of the season last year, which is something they can fall back on this year too.
Nebraska is 30-10 ATS in its last 40 games after failing to cover four or five of its last six games coming in. The Huskers are 6-0 ATS off three straight conference games over the last two seasons. Nebraska is 21-10-1 ATS in its last 32 road games. The Golden Gophers are 5-11-1 ATS in their last 17 games following an ATS win. Roll with Nebraska Saturday.
|10-12-19||San Jose State v. Nevada -2||38-41||Win||100||69 h 37 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday No-Doubt Rout on Nevada -2
I love the spot for the Nevada Wolf Pack in this game. They are coming off a bye week following an embarrassing home loss to Hawaii. Now everyone has written them off, and I have no doubt they were extra focused these last two weeks to correct their mistakes. They are primed for their best effort of the season at home against San Jose State this weekend now.
That’s saying a lot considering they already beat Purdue 34-31 at home, and that was back when Purdue was healthy and good. Their two losses have come to Oregon and Hawaii, who are both two very quality teams. Now they take a step back in class here against San Jose State, a team they should be able to handle.
San Jose State is getting a lot of respect from oddsmakers due to beating Arkansas 31-24 on the road. The other two wins came at home over Northern Colorado and New Mexico as favorites, which weren’t impressive. They also lost at home by 18 against a mediocre Tulsa team, and were blown out on the road 24-41 at Air Force. That was a 10-41 game against Air Force before they tacked on two garbage touchdowns late.
The bye week was the perfect time to name Malik Henry their new starting quarterback. Henry was the No. 3 ranked QB coming out of high school and has transferred to Nevada from Florida State. It’s a surprise he didn’t win the job from the start, and he will be playing with a chip on his shoulder. Having two weeks to get accustomed to the offense due to the bye week will be a huge advantage for him.
Nevada is 8-0 SU & 7-1 ATS in its last eight home meetings with San Jose State. It is winning these games by an average of 22.6 points per game. Getting the Wolf Pack as only 2-point favorites here is an absolute gift from oddsmakers. Nevada is 13-3 ATS in its last 16 home games after scoring 14 points or less last game. The Wolf Pack are 7-2 ATS in their last nine games following a bye week.
Plays against all teams where the line is +3 to -3 (San Jose State) - off a home win over a conference rival, winning between 51% and 60% of their games on the season are 30-6 (83.3%) ATS over the last five seasons. Bet Nevada Saturday.
|10-12-19||Alabama v. Texas A&M +17||47-28||Loss||-110||68 h 17 m||Show|
15* Alabama/Texas A&M CBS No-Brainer on Texas A&M +17
The Texas A&M Aggies are treating this game as their Super Bowl. They already have two losses on the season, so for them to really call this a successful year, they need to upset Alabama. Look for them to put forth their biggest effort of the season at home here Saturday with the 12th man behind them at Kyle Field.
Yes, Texas A&M has two losses, but they were competitive in both. They lost to Clemson 10-24 and to Auburn 20-28. Both teams are ranked in the Top 12 in the country. If they can play with both of those teams, they should be able to stay within 17 points of Alabama at home here Saturday.
Obviously, the Aggies have played a tough schedule having already had to play Clemson and Auburn. Alabama has played the much easier schedule as the toughest team they have faced is South Carolina, which is ranked 38th in the Sagarin ratings. Their other four wins have come against Duke, New Mexico State, Southern Miss and Ole Miss.
This Alabama defense has shown vulnerability due to injuries. They gave up 23 points and 459 total yards to South Carolina and 31 points and 476 total yards to Ole Miss. It’s safe to say they don’t have the same lockdown defense they have had in years’ past. Kellen Mond and company should be able to score with Alabama and take advantage of their soft defense.
Texas A&M has been able to play Alabama tougher than most teams in recent years. Indeed, six of the last seven meetings have been decided by 22 points or fewer. Jimbo Fisher will have his players ready for the fight of their lives this weekend to try and turn their season around. Plus, defensively the Aggies are elite, giving up just 17.8 points per game, 299.8 yards per game and 4.7 yards per play this season. I would argue they have the better defense this year.
Texas A&M is 8-1 ATS vs. good passing teams with a completion percentage of 62% or better over the last three seasons. Nick Saban is 9-18 ATS when the total is 56.5 to 63 as the coach of Alabama. The Crimson Tide are 1-6 ATS in their last seven games following a win. The Aggies are 11-3 ATS in their last 14 home games. Take Texas A&M Saturday.
|10-12-19||Michigan State +11 v. Wisconsin||Top||0-38||Loss||-115||68 h 9 m||Show|
20* Michigan State/Wisconsin Big Ten No-Brainer on Michigan State +11
The Michigan State Spartans are way undervalued right now. They are coming off a 10-34 loss at Ohio State, and everyone seems to have given up on this team now. This is exactly the type of game I like backing the Spartans in as head coach Mark Dantonio always seems to get his team to respond. It’s a great time to ‘buy low’ on the Spartans this week.
Michigan State should be 5-1 this season with its only loss on the road at Ohio State. And Ohio State is making everyone look bad and may be the best team in the country. I say they should be 5-1 because they have outgained five of six opponents this year by an average of 160.4 yards per game. Their 7-10 loss to Arizona State was a fluke because they outgained the Sun Devils by 188 yards.
Wisconsin is overvalued due to being 5-0 SU & 4-1 ATS this season. Now they are laying too many points this week against a Michigan State team that I believe is close to their equal. It’s exactly the type of matchup that these teams love, and so do teams like Iowa and Northwestern in the Big Ten West. Games that are expected to be physical, low scoring games are what these teams live for.
Favorites of more than 7 points with a total of 43 or less are covering just 43% of the time over the last 17 seasons, a sample size of more than 400 games. Favorites have a hard time covering when it’s expected to be a low-scoring game.
Plus, these teams now have a common opponent in Northwestern. Wisconsin beat Northwestern only 24-15 at home despite getting two defensive touchdowns. Michigan State beat Northwestern 31-10 on the road. Those results against a common opponent give me a lot of confidence that the Spartans can give the Badgers a run for their money, possibly pulling off the upset.
That 24-point loss to Ohio State also sets Michigan State up for a great situation. Michigan State is 10-1 SU in its last 11 games off a double-digit loss with its only loss coming by a field goal. We saw how well the Spartans bounced back off that fluke loss to Arizona State with their 21-point win at Northwestern. And the Spartans will be looking to salvage their season with an upset victory here Saturday.
Michigan State is 5-4 SU & 6-3 ATS in its last nine meetings with Wisconsin. The Badgers have only beaten the Spartans by double-digits once in the last nine meetings. Wisconsin is 0-6 ATS after gaining 300 or more rushing yards last game over the past two seasons. Dantonio is 9-1 ATS in road games with a total of 42 or less as the coach of Michigan State.
Plays against any team (Wisconsin) - after beating the spread by 40 or more points total in their last five games, a top level team winning at least 80% of their games playing a good team that wins 60% to 80% of their games are 42-13 (76.4%) ATS over the last five seasons. Roll with Michigan State Saturday.
|10-12-19||Oklahoma v. Texas +11||34-27||Win||100||65 h 43 m||Show|
15* Oklahoma/Texas FOX Early ANNIHILATOR on Texas +11
The Oklahoma Sooners are overvalued after a 5-0 start against a very soft schedule. They haven’t played a team ranked higher than 43rd in the Sagarin ratings. The best team they have played thus far is Texas Tech, and two of their other premier games were against Houston and UCLA. The other two wins have come against South Dakota and Kansas.
Conversely, Texas has played the 16-toughest schedule in the country. Their 38-45 loss to LSU is looking better and better by the week. They have also beaten Oklahoma State, West Virginia, LA Tech and Rice thus far. I think the fact that the Longhorns are battle-tested is a huge advantage for them heading into this Red River Rivalry.
Texas always seems to play Oklahoma tough. Texas is 6-1 ATS in the last seven meetings with only one loss coming by double-digits, and that was a 12-point defeat. The Longhorns have covered those games by an average of 11.5 points per game. And we all know that Tom Herman loves playing the role of underdog. In fact, Herman is 13-3 ATS as an underdog as the coach of Texas.
Jalen Hurts has been up against a schedule of very soft defenses, and he’ll finally get some resistance here against Texas. His accuracy as a passer will finally get tested here. And the Longhorns have been good at stopping the run, holding opponents to just 117 rushing yards per game and 3.5 per carry. They will make Hurts try and beat them with his arm, and I’m doubting he’ll be able to do it.
Texas is 6-0 ATS in road games after playing a game where 60 or more total points were scored over the last three seasons. Herman is 11-2 ATS vs. good rushing teams that average 5.25 or more yards per carry in all games he has coached. The Longhorns are 7-2 ATS in their last nine neutral site games, while the Sooners are just 4-9 ATS in their last 13 neutral site games. Bet Texas Saturday.
|10-12-19||South Carolina +25 v. Georgia||Top||20-17||Win||100||65 h 39 m||Show|
20* SEC GAME OF THE MONTH on South Carolina +25
For starters, I love the fact that South Carolina is coming off a bye week. This has given them extra time to get healthy, and nobody needed it more than their two best offensive players in QB Ryan Hilinski and RB Rico Dowdle. Both are now probably and expected to play in this game against rival Georgia.
The Gamecocks bounced back nicely going into the bye with a 24-7 home win over Kentucky. They dominated that game by outgaining the Wildcats by 175 yards in the win. Hilinski has been impressive competing 61% for 912 yards with five touchdowns and three interceptions. Dowdle has rushed for 370 yards and four scores while averaging 6.6 per carry.
Georgia is coming off a misleading 43-14 win at Tennessee last week. This was a 15-point game with only eight minutes to go against a very bad Tennessee team that might be the worst in the SEC. But Georgia tacked on two touchdowns in the final minutes to cover, including a 69-yard fumble recovery for a score. It was such a bad beat for Tennessee backers that it ended up on SVP bad beats. I think Georgia is overvalued because they covered that game.
South Carolina always seems to play Georgia tough. In fact, the Gamecock’s have only lost once by more than 24 points to the Bulldogs in the last 42 meetings. That’s a 41-1 system backing South Carolina pertaining to this 25-point spread. Enough said. Take South Carolina Saturday.
|10-11-19||Virginia +2.5 v. Miami-FL||Top||9-17||Loss||-109||48 h 19 m||Show|
20* Virginia/Miami ESPN No-Brainer on Virginia +2.5
Wrong team favored here. The Virginia Cavaliers are a legit ACC title contender this season and have been the best team in the Coastal to this point. They will prove they are the class of the Coastal with a road win at hapless Miami Friday night.
The Cavaliers are 4-1 this season with wins over Florida State and Pittsburgh. Their only loss came on the road at Notre Dame in a game they led at halftime, but five turnovers did them in in a misleading 20-35 loss. The Cavaliers were only outgained by 5 yards by the Fighting Irish in the loss.
Miami is already regretting hiring the inexperienced Manny Diaz. The Hurricanes are off to a 2-3 start this season with their only wins coming at home over Bethune-Cookman and Central Michigan. And even that win against Central Michigan was ugly as they won 17-12 as 30.5-point favorites while getting held to just 301 yards of total offense.
The three losses have come against the best three teams they played. They lost to Florida on a neutral, to UNC on the road and to Virginia Tech at home. That 35-42 home loss to the Hokies last year was real poor when you consider VA Tech was coming off a 10-45 home loss to Duke. It was a Hokies team that many feel quit on their head coach, but they jumped out to a 28-0 lead and never really looked back.
There’s going to be a lot of people backing Miami in this game that say the Hurricanes dominated the box score in that game. While that’s true, you have to factor in that VA Tech got up 28-0, and the Hurricanes were in the hurry up the rest of the way. Of course they are going to put up big numbers against the Hokies’ prevent defense. There’s a reason N’Kosi Perry was beat out by Jarren Williams at quarterback in the offseason. And I don’t think Perry is going to have much success against this vaunted Virginia defense.
This is a Virginia defense that is only allowing 21.4 points, 275 yards per game and 4.3 yards per play. They are holding opponents to 78 yards per game and 0.9 yards per play less than their season averages. Virginia also had the better QB in Bryce Perkins, a dual-threat who have accounted for 10 total touchdowns this year while completing 67% of his passes.
Miami is 3-15 ATS in its last 18 off an upset loss to a conference rival as a favorite of 6 points or more. The Hurricanes are 1-8 ATS when playing against a team with a winning record over the last two seasons. Miami is 1-11 ATS in its last 12 October games. The underdog is 13-2 ATS in the last 15 meetings. Virginia is 4-0 ATS in its last four trips to Miami. Bet Virginia Friday.
|10-09-19||Appalachian State v. UL-Lafayette -108||Top||17-7||Loss||-108||9 h 12 m||Show|
25* Sun Belt GAME OF THE YEAR on Louisiana-Lafayette PK
I absolutely love the situation for the Louisiana-Lafayette Rajin’ Cajuns tonight. They lost both meetings with Appalachian State last year, losing 27-17 in the regular season and 19-30 in the Sun Belt Championship Game. They were only outgained by 44 yards in the first meeting and actually outgained the Mountaineers by one yard in the title game.
It’s safe to say the Rajin’ Cajuns want some revenge tonight. Both of those meetings were on the road at Appalachian State. Now, the Rajin’ Cajuns get them at home this time around. It will be a rowdy atmosphere at Cajun Field for this week night game that has huge Sun Belt title implications.
Appalachian State isn’t as strong as last year, especially after losing head coach Scott Satterfield to Louisville. They have played the 143rd-toughest schedule in the country, which is a big reason why they are off to a 4-0 start. Three of their four wins have come at home, and their lone road win came at UNC 34-31 against a Tar Heels team that was in a clear flat spot.
Lafayette is the real deal this season. It is off to a 4-1 SU & 5-0 ATS start as oddsmakers have failed to realize how good this team really is. They have covered the spread by a combined 73 points during their 5-0 ATS start, or by an average of 14.6 points per game. Their only loss came on the road at Mississippi State 28-38 as 18.5-point dogs. They should be favored in this game Wednesday night.
Lafayette is putting up elite numbers this year, too, to prove that this start is no fluke. They are averaging 44.4 points, 540.2 yards per game and 7.6 yards per play on offense. They are only giving up 21.4 points, 345.2 yards per game and 5.1 yards per play on defense. They are outscoring opponents by 23.0 points per game, and they are outgaining them by 195.0 yards per game and 2.5 yards per play.
Looking at the yardage totals for Appalachian State, it’s easy to see that their 4-0 start is very fraudulent, especially when you consider how easy their schedule has been. The Mountaineers are gaining 429.2 yards per game on offense and giving up 420.0 yards per game on defense. They are only outgaining opponents by 9.2 yards per game on the season.
Lafayette is 17-3 ATS in its last 20 games after gaining 475 or more total yards per game in their last three games coming in. The Rajin’ Cajuns are 13-3 ATS in their last 16 games overall. Lafayette is 5-0 ATS in its last five games following a win. Bet Louisiana-Lafayette Wednesday.
|10-05-19||Liberty v. New Mexico State +5||20-13||Loss||-109||77 h 48 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday UPSET SHOCKER on New Mexico State +5
You would be hard-pressed to find a team that has played a tougher schedule than New Mexico State has to this point. The Aggies have played the 15th-toughest schedule in the country according to Sagarin, and that’s a big reason why they are 0-5 this season. They have been a 17-plus point underdog in four of their five games, and a dog in all five.
They opened the season with road losses to Washington State and Alabama. They have played two of the best teams in the Mountain West in San Diego State and Fresno State at home. And their most winnable game was as 4-point dogs at New Mexico in a 52-55 loss in a huge rivalry game. They have managed to go 3-2 ATS, so they have exceeded expectations in terms of the spread. And they were competitive in every game as they were only outgained by 68 yards by SDSU, 109 yards by New Mexico and 71 yards by Fresno.
Now, New Mexico State is looking at this home game against Liberty as their best chance to get a victory. They don’t want to let this opportunity slip by, and they are hungry for their first win. They have a three-game road trip coming up at Central Michigan, at Georgia Southern and at Ole Miss after this. No question they have this game circled.
Plus, Liberty and New Mexico State are becoming rivals quickly. They played each other twice last year with the home team winning both meetings. New Mexico State won 49-41 at home as 3-point dogs and racked up 573 total yards in the victory. Liberty won 28-21 at home as 6-point favorites despite getting outgained 396 to 295. New Mexico State outgained Liberty by a total of 158 yards in the two meetings.
I think Liberty comes in overvalued off due to its three-game winning streak. They opened the season with a 24-0 home loss to Syracuse and a 14-35 road loss at Louisiana-Lafayette. But they have reeled off three straight home wins since against a soft schedule in Buffalo, Hampton and New Mexico. They only beat New Mexico 17-10 as 7.5-point home favorites last week.
So, Liberty has played four home games compared to just one road game. They have played the 121st-toughest schedule in the country compared to the 15th-toughest for NMSU. That difference in strength of schedule is the biggest reason I’m on New Mexico State this week. Plus, it’s a must-win game for the Aggies with the brutal schedule they still have ahead with three straight road games next. Bet New Mexico State Saturday.
|10-05-19||California v. Oregon -17.5||Top||7-17||Loss||-110||77 h 47 m||Show|
20* Pac-12 GAME OF THE WEEK on Oregon -17.5
The Oregon Ducks are undervalued due to losing to Auburn in their opener. They had that game in hand but allowed a big comeback late and lost 21-27 as 4-point dogs. Well, Auburn has gone 5-0 SU & 5-0 ATS this season and is clearly one of the best teams in the country, so that loss doesn’t feel too bad now. And the Ducks know they still have a chance to win the Pac-12 and make the four-team playoff. They have been and will be motivated for style points the rest of the way.
Oregon has gone on to dominate in their three games since that loss. They beat Nevada 77-6 as 24-point home favorites, cruised past Montana 35-3, and topped Stanford 21-6 on the road as 10.5-point favorites. They haven’t allow a single touchdown in any of their last three games as this may be the best defense in program history. They are giving up just 10.5 points, 263 yards per game and 3.9 yards per play this season.
Justin Herbert returned this season for one reason and one reason only, and that’s to win the Pac-12. He has been a tremendous leader for this team and is having another monster season this year. Herbert is completing 74.4% of his passes for 1,127 yards with a 14-to-0 TD/INT ratio while averaging 8.7 yards per attempt.
California got off to a fraudulent 4-0 start and was and still is getting too much respect from oddsmakers because of it. This vaunted Cal defense gave up over 500 total yards to Ole Miss two weeks ago and were fortunate to win 28-20. They only beat North Texas 23-17 as 14-point home favorites, the same North Texas team that was just blasted by Houston last week despite the Cougars redshirting their top QB and WR before the game. And last week they were upset 17-24 at home by Arizona State while getting outgained by 120 yards.
Of course, it hurt that Cal QB Chase Garbers had to leave the game with a shoulder injury. Backup QB Devon Modster was forced into action and was terrible, completing 5-of-14 passes for 23 yards with an interception. Now Modster will have to start for them moving forward, and I just don’t see how Cal can score enough points to hang with Oregon. It’s a Cal offense that is only scoring 23.0 points per game this season after averaging just 21.5 points per game last year, and that was with a solid Garbers at QB.
Oregon beat Cal 42-24 on the road last year. Oregon is now 9-1 in the last 10 meetings with eight of those nine wins coming by 16 points or more. Oregon is 11-1 SU & 10-2 ATS in its last 12 home meetings with Cal, winning by an average of 18 points per game. The Ducks are 43-13 ATS in their last 56 games after allowing 3 points or less in the first half last game. Finally, the Ducks have had two full weeks to prepare for Cal, and they are 20-8 ATS in their last 28 games off a bye week. Roll with Oregon Saturday.
|10-05-19||Northwestern v. Nebraska -7||10-13||Loss||-117||73 h 54 m||Show|
15* Northwestern/Nebraska FOX No-Brainer on Nebraska -7
The Nebraska Cornhuskers have every reason to be more motivated for this game than any game yet at this point in the season. They were just embarrassed on National TV by Ohio State, which is looking more and more like the best team in the country. And now they want revenge on Northwestern after blowing a big lead to the Wildcats last year.
In fact, the Cornhuskers have now lost in overtime to Northwestern each of the last two seasons. They led 31-21 at Northwestern with under three minutes to play. Northwestern scored 10 points in the final 2:27, including a TD with 12 seconds left to force OT. Then they won it on a field goal in the extra session. It was a heartbreaking loss for the Huskers, and one that certainly have not forgotten.
The Huskers should be 4-1 this season. They blew a 17-0 lead at Colorado in Week 2 for their other loss outside Ohio State. They are clearly improved. Scott Frost is trying to build something big here, which is why I’m not worried about how they’ll come back off that loss to Ohio State. Frost is a prideful guy who has rubbed off on his players and I have no doubt they’ll give a big effort this week.
While the Huskers are improved, Northwestern clearly isn’t the same team that won the Big Ten West last year. The Wildcats are just 1-3 SU & 1-3 ATS this season with their only win coming 30-14 at home against a UNLV team that has looked atrocious this season. They also lost to a bad Stanford team 7-17 on the road, were blown out at home by Michigan State 10-31, and lost last week to Wisconsin 15-24.
I was on Northwestern last week as 24-point dogs at Wisconsin. It was a clear flat spot for the Badgers off their huge win over Michigan the previous week. And the Badgers were as flat as a pancake as expected. It was also a good matchup for Northwestern. Pat Fitzgerald’s teams always do better in games that are expected to be physical, low-scoring games. They don’t do as well against teams like Nebraska that can spread you out and use their speed.
This is a dynamic Huskers offense that is putting up 31.8 points, 438 yards per game and 6.1 yards per play. Adrian Martinez has remained healthy this season and is playing well, completing 59.5% of his passes for 1,099 yards with a 7-to-5 TD/INT ratio and 8.7 yards per attempt. Martinez has also rushed for 315 yards and three scores already. The Wildcats will struggle to contain his speed just as they did last year with the Huskers scored 31 points on them.
Northwestern has a putrid offense that won’t be able to keep up with Nebraska. The Wildcats are averaging just 15.5 points, 293 yards per game and 3.9 yards per play this season. QB Hunter Johnson has been a huge disappointment after transferring from Clemson. He also got hurt last week against Wisconsin, and though he’s probable this week, he won’t be 100%.
Nebraska is 16-3 ATS in its last 19 games vs. poor passing teams with a completion percentage of 48% or worse. The Huskers are 7-0 ATS after playing two straight conference games over the last two seasons. Nebraska is 13-3 ATS in its lsat 16 games after failing to cover the spread in four of its last five games coming in. The Huskers are 4-0-1 ATS in their last five games off a loss. A lot of bettors have given up on the Huskers after their no-show against Ohio State last week, and this is the perfect time to ‘buy low’ on them. Roll with Nebraska Saturday.
|10-05-19||Baylor v. Kansas State -2||Top||31-12||Loss||-107||92 h 58 m||Show|
20* Big 12 GAME OF THE WEEK on Kansas State -2
I think this is a good opportunity to buy low on Kansas State and sell high on Baylor after their performances last week. Kansas State lost by 13 to Oklahoma State and failed to cover the 4-point spread. That was a hungry Cowboys team as they didn’t want to open 0-2 in Big 12 play after a tough loss at Texas. And it’s always tough to win in Stillwater.
Baylor beat Iowa State 23-21 at home outright as 2.5-point dogs last week. A lot of people were on Iowa State in that game, so it’s a result that is giving Baylor a lot of respect. But now this will be just Baylor’s 2nd road game of the season. Their only other road game this year was a lackluster 21-13 win at Rice as 27-point favorites.
Kansas State is coming off a tough two-game road trip at Mississippi State and Oklahoma State. They were certainly happy to get a split there as they upset Mississippi State before losing to the Cowboys. But in their two home games this season, Kansas State has outscored its two opponents 101-14. Fans will be excited for the Big 12 home opener this week with Baylor coming to town.
It’s a good matchup for Kansas State. They have been soft against the run, but Baylor is a team that likes to put the ball in the air. And Kansas State is only giving up 127 passing yards per game, 51.1% completions and 5.4 yards per attempt. I really just think that Baylor is overvalued after starting 4-0 against such a soft schedule. Kansas State is way more battle-tested having already faced Mississippi State and Oklahoma State.
The Wildcats are 6-1 ATS in their last seven home games. Kansas State is 6-1 ATS in its last seven games off a loss. The Wildcats are 19-7-1 ATS in their last 27 games after failing to cover the spread in their previous game. The Bears are 2-7 ATS in their last 9 games after covering the spread in their previous game. Kansas State is 4-1 ATS in its last five home meetings with Baylor. The Wildcats are 14-3 ATS in their last 17 games after being out-rushed by 200 or more yards in their previous game. Bet Kansas State Saturday.
|10-05-19||Illinois +14 v. Minnesota||Top||17-40||Loss||-109||72 h 19 m||Show|
20* Big Ten GAME OF THE WEEK on Illinois +14
This is easily the best team that Lovie Smith has had at Illinois. The Fighting Illini returned 17 starters this year. They opened 2-0 with conformable wins over Akron and Connecticut. But they have lost back-to-back heartbreakers to Eastern Michigan by 3 and Nebraska by 4. They are coming off a bye week, which helps them refocus off those two tough losses. And they should put forth a great effort here against Minnesota as a result this week.
Minnesota is a fraudulent 4-0 this season, and that’s why it’s time to sell high on them. All four wins have come by 7 points or less against an easy schedule of South Dakota State, Fresno State, Georgia Southern and Purdue. I expect this one goes down to the wire as well.
Illinois has been terrible the last two seasons, but yet they’ve had Minnesota’s number. They only lost by 7 as 14.5-point road dogs in 2017. And last year they pulled the upset in blowout fashion as 9.5-point home dogs 55-31. The Fighting Illini racked up 646 total yards against Minnesota last year, including 430 rushing.
This will easily be the best rushing attack the Golden Gophers have faced this year. Illinois averages 181 rushing yards per game and 4.6 per carry this season. Minnesota just can’t run the football. They average 116 rushing yards per game and 2.6 per carry despite the soft schedule. They are a one-dimensional passing team, which is why I don’t trust them.
The underdog is 7-3 ATS in the last 10 meetings. The Golden Gophers are 1-4 ATS in their last five games off an ATS win. It’s time to sell high on fraudulent, unbeaten Minnesota this week. And they could easily be looking ahead to their showdown with Nebraska next week. The Fighting Illini will give them more of a fight than they bargained for this weekend. Take Illinois Saturday.
|10-05-19||Eastern Michigan v. Central Michigan +6.5||16-42||Win||100||72 h 47 m||Show|
15* MAC PLAY OF THE DAY on Central Michigan +6.5
The Central Michigan Chippewas are improving rapidly under former Florida head coach Jim McElwain. He was one of the better hires of the offseason, and probably the best hire in the MAC. He is trying to turn the Chippewas into relevance again as this has been one of the better MAC programs throughout the years.
The Chippewas are 2-3 on the season, and all three losses have come on the road against some very good teams in Wisconsin, Miami and Western Michigan. After no-showing at Wisconsin, I was impressed with their last two road performances. They only lost 12-17 at Miami as 30.5-point dogs and held the Hurricanes to just 301 total yards in the defeat. And last week they lost 15-31 at Western Michigan as 16-point dogs in a very misleading final. They actually outgained Western Michigan by 5 yards in the defeat.
Since David Moore took over at quarterback after the loss to Wisconsin, this Chippewas offense has taken off. Moore has thrown for 854 yards with three touchdowns and three interceptions in three starts since taking over. Plus, Central Michigan has dominated in its two home games this season, beating Albany 38-21 as 13.5-point favorites and topping Akron 45-24 as 2.5-point favorites.
Eastern Michigan has played a very soft schedule, and all of their wins have been close. Yes, they are 3-1, but they only beat Coastal Carolina by 7, Illinois by 3 and Central Connecticut State by 5. They also lost by 21 at Kentucky. That 5-point win over Central Connecticut State only came after they blocked a punt and returned it for a touchdown in the final seconds. They were 33-point favorites in that game, so it was an awful effort and one that shows they are extremely vulnerable. They have no business being nearly touchdown road favorites here.
Central Michigan is 5-2 SU & 5-2 ATS in its last seven meetings with Eastern Michigan. The home team has won four straight meetings in this series. Eastern Michigan is 10-23 ATS in its last 33 road games off a home win. Chris Creighton is 2-9 ATS off two or more consecutive overs as the coach of Eastern Michigan. The Eagles are 12-27 ATS in their last 39 games following a win. The Chippewas are 9-4 ATS in their last 13 after scoring less than 20 points in their previous game. Take Central Michigan Saturday.
|10-05-19||TCU v. Iowa State -3||24-49||Win||100||90 h 22 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Early ANNIHILATOR on Iowa State -3
The Iowa State Cyclones feel like they should be 4-0. They blew late leads against both Iowa at home and Baylor on the road in the closing minutes. They lost those two games by a combined 3 points. Now, this is a must-win game for them at home Saturday when they host the TCU Horned Frogs as they don’t want to fall to 0-2 in the Big 12. All goals are still in front of this team with a big finish. They started slow last year at 1-3, but rebounded for an 8-5 season. They brought 16 starters back from that team as well.
When you look at the numbers, it’s easy to see Iowa State has been much more dominant than is 2-2 record would indicate. The Cyclones are averaging 500.0 yards per game and 7.1 yards per play on offense, and only giving up 352.7 yards per game and 4.6 yards per play on defense. They are outgaining their opponents by 147.3 yards per game and 2.5 yards per play on the year. This is still one of the better teams in the country, but since they are just 2-2 they are getting overlooked now.
TCU has played such a soft schedule and is just 3-1 this season despite playing three home games. They lost at home to SMU 38-41. That’s a good SMU team, but it’s still a bad loss. Their three wins have come against Arkansas-Pine Bluff, Purdue and Kansas. And that win over Purdue comes with an asterisk. The Boilermakers were banged up and it was their first game without QB Elijah Sindelar. Plus, TCU was off a bye week, so it was a great spot for the Horned Frogs.
Once again, TCU is a one-dimensional running team, which isn’t going to bode well for them here against Iowa State. The Horned Frogs average 275 rushing yards per game, but they are completing just 52.3% of their passes for 213 passing yards per game despite the easy schedule. Well, Iowa State has been stout against the run, giving up just 119 rushing yards per game and 3.3 yards per carry. They held a really good Iowa rushing attack to just 112 yards on 37 carries, an average of 3.0 yards per carry.
The home team has won three straight and four of the last five meetings in this series. TCU is 0-6 ATS off two consecutive games where they forced one or fewer turnovers over the last two seasons. Iowa State is 7-0 ATS in October games over the last three years. The Cyclones are 6-0 ATS after having lost two of their last three games over the last three seasons. These three trends combine for a perfect 19-0 system backing the Cyclones. Take Iowa State Saturday.
|10-05-19||Purdue +28.5 v. Penn State||7-35||Win||100||69 h 48 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Undervalued Underdog on Purdue +28.5
The Penn State Nittany Lions come into this game way overvalued. They are 4-0 and coming off a 59-0 beat down as only 6-point favorites at Maryland, covering the spread by 53 points. Now the betting public is quick to jump on them after that performance, and quick to forget that they were in dog fights with Buffalo and Pittsburgh in their two previous games at home.
Indeed, in Week 3 Penn State actually trailed Buffalo at halftime as 31.5-point favorites. They were outgained by 72 yards by the Bulls in a very misleading final. Then in Week 3, Penn State only beat Pitt 17-10 as 17-point home favorites. The Nittany Lions were also outgained by 7 yards by the Panthers. That’s a Pitt team that lost by 16 at home to Virginia and barely beat Delaware 17-14 at home.
The Nittany Lions clearly got a boost from their bye week in Week 4 and came back and played their best game of the season. They won’t play a better game than they did against Maryland. But now this is a sandwich spot off the National TV win over Maryland, and with the meat of their Big Ten schedule on deck. Penn State could easily be overlooking Purdue and looking ahead to games against Iowa, Michigan and Michigan State the next three weeks. They’d be more than happy to get out with a win against Purdue, but they won’t be concerned with covering this massive 28.5-point spread.
Purdue comes in undervalued after opening the season 1-3 SU & 1-3 ATS. Two of their losses came by 7 points or less to Nevada and Minnesota. They also beat Vanderbilt by 18 as 7-point home favorites in their lone cover. And their lone blowout loss came 13-34 at home to TCU in their first game without QB Elijah Sindelar. Plus, TCU was coming off a bye week. It was just a bad spot for them.
I was impressed with the way Purdue was able to hang against Minnesota last week without Sindelar. They only lost 31-38 and racked up 414 total yards on a solid Minnesota defense. Jack Plummer took over for an injured Sindelar early in that one and threw for 245 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions. Now that he has some experience under his belt, he should only continue to get more comfortable in Jeff Brohm’s explosive offense.
I know WR Rondale Moore is also out after getting injured last game, but he left that game early and only had two receptions for 18 yards. So Plummer is used to playing without him. Certainly these injuries to Sindelar and Moore hurt Purdue, but this line would probably be somewhere in the neighborhood of 14 if both were healthy. Oddsmakers have over-adjusted for these injuries, and the betting public has bet this number up way too high now. It’s time to ‘buy low’ on the Boilermakers, and ’sell high’ on the Nittany Lions.
Penn State is 7-19 ATS in its last 26 home games after covering the spread in three of its last four games coming in. Jeff Brohm is 10-2 ATS vs. good teams that outscore their opponents by 10-plus points per game in his career as a head coach. Brohm is 20-6 ATS vs. good passing teams with a completion percentage of 58% or better in all games as a head coach.
Plays against home favorites (Penn State) - after beating the spread by 35 or more points in their last three games, who are undefeated on the season are 40-14 (74.1%) ATS over the last five seasons. The Boilermakers are 15-6 ATS in their last 21 games following an ATS loss. The Nittany Lions are 1-5 ATS in their last six games following an ATS win. Bet Purdue Saturday.
|10-05-19||Iowa v. Michigan -3.5||3-10||Win||100||51 h 0 m||Show|
15* Iowa/Michigan FOX No-Brainer on Michigan -3.5
The Michigan Wolverines were 12-point favorites over Iowa when this line came out in the offseason. It has moved nearly 10 points in Iowa’s favor. In my opinion, it’s time to ‘buy low’ on the Wolverines now that everyone has basically given up on them following their loss at Wisconsin two weeks ago. That loss to Wisconsin doesn’t look so bad now with the Badgers blasting everyone they have played to this point.
I know it was Rutgers, but I was impressed with how Michigan came back last week and handled their business following that loss to Wisconsin. They could have easily suffered a hangover after that loss to the Badgers. They didn’t. They beat Rutgers 52-0 and covered as 27-point favorites with ease. Keep in mind Iowa only beat Rutgers 30-0 as 17.5-point home favorites.
And that’s my issue with Iowa is the ease of their schedule to this point. They have played the 110th-toughest schedule in the country. They made easy work of Miami Ohio, Rutgers and Middle Tennessee State at home. In their lone real test, they won 18-17 at Iowa State and were fortunate to win that game. Iowa State outgained Iowa by 105 yards and deserved to win. Michigan is better than Iowa State.
The home team is 6-1 SU in the last seven meetings in this series. Iowa is 0-7 ATS in its last seven games as an underdog of 7 points or fewer. The Hawkeyes are 2-6 ATS in their last eight road games vs. a team with a winning record. Kirk Ferentz is 13-23 ATS in road games off a win by 21 points or more as the coach of Iowa. Roll with Michigan Saturday.
|10-04-19||Central Florida v. Cincinnati +4.5||Top||24-27||Win||100||53 h 41 m||Show|
20* UCF/Cincinnati AAC ANNIHILATOR on Cincinnati +4.5
The Cincinnati Bearcats are ready to win the AAC this season. The conference goes through UCF, which has won it each of the last two years. But their run comes to an end this year, and it starts with losing at Cincinnati here Friday night in front of what will be a raucous home crowd at Nippert Stadium.
The loss at Ohio State for Cincinnati doesn’t look too bad now. Ohio State is blasting everyone. And the Bearcats have handled their business in impressive fashion in their other three games, going 3-0 SU & 3-0 ATS. They beat UCLA 24-14 at home as 2.5-point favorites, covered as 17.5-point home favorites in a 35-13 win over Miami Ohio, and blasted a good Marshall team 52-14 as 4-point road favorites.
It’s very impressive how well the Bearcats have responded following that loss to Ohio State with back-to-back blowout wins over Miami Ohio and Marshall. Their defense is borderline elite, allowing just 20.7 points per game, 297 yards per game and 4.7 yards per play. Their defense is holding opposing offenses to 11.3 points per game, 89 yards per game and 1.1 yards per play less than their season averages. This will easily be the best defense UCF has faced to date.
UCF has become a huge public team because they’ve been so good against the spread over the past three seasons. And they opened up this season covering their first three games in wins over Florida A&M, Florida Atlantic and Stanford. But they have failed to cover the last two weeks as their lines have been inflated. They lost outright to Pittsburgh 34-35 on the road as 10-point favorites. And they failed to cover as 42.5-point favorites in a 35-point win over lowly UConn.
Without question, Cincinnati has played the much more difficult schedule this year. The Bearcats have played the 33rd-toughest schedule in the country. The Knights have played the 96th-toughest schedule based on the Sagarin ratings. Their one loss came to Pittsburgh, which was blasted at home by Virginia by 16 and also barely beat Delaware at home 17-14 last week.
It’s also worth noting that UCF had that dream crusher loss to Pittsburgh. This is a team that lost just one game over the previous two seasons combined and were at least in the playoff discussion. But now with that loss at Pitt they have no shot to make the playoff. I question how motivated they are going to be the rest of the way because of it. The Bearcats are 8-0 SU in their eight home games over the past two seasons, winning by an average of 26.5 points per game. Bet Cincinnati Friday.
|09-28-19||Colorado State +24.5 v. Utah State||24-34||Win||100||73 h 15 m||Show|
15* MWC PLAY OF THE DAY on Colorado State +24.5
The Utah State Aggies are coming off a historic season in which they went 11-2 SU and 9-3-1 ATS. But they only brought back nine starters from that team, including two on offense. The betting public has continued to back this team and they’ve been rewarded as the Aggies have opened 2-1 SU & 3-0 ATS.
Clearly, I believe Utah State is overvalued now. It’s time to ‘sell high’ on the Aggies, who barely covered in a 3-point loss to Wake Forest as 4.5-point underdogs. They also barely covered in a 6-point win over San Diego State as 4-point favorites. Now they are being asked to lay a whopping 24.5 points to a Colorado State team that is undervalued after opening 1-3.
The Rams have shown me enough against a tough schedule to believe they can stay within 24.5 points here. Their three losses have come to Colorado, Arkansas and Toledo all by 21 points or less. I’ve really been impressed with their offense, which is averaging 34.5 points, 552.2 yards per game and 7.2 yards per play. This offense can travel anywhere. Colorado State is now outgaining opponents by 113 yards per game on the season, so they are clearly better than their record would indicate.
Last week, Colorado State only lost 35-41 at home to Toledo as 7-point dogs. They racked up 694 total yards and and found their QB of the future in Patrick O’Brien, who started in place of the injured Colin Hill. O’Brien threw for 405 yards with one touchdown and one interception, while also rushing for 27 yards and a score.
Colorado State just has Utah State’s number. The Rams are 2-1 SU & 3-0 ATS in the last three meetings. They won 27-14 on the road as 9.5-point favorites in 2017, and 31-24 at home as 6-point underdogs in 2016. But last year’s performance was the most impressive despite losing 24-29 on the road. The Rams were whopping 30.5-point underdogs in that game and actually outgained the Aggies by 196 total yards and should have won that game outright.
Plays on road underdogs (Colorado State) - in a game involving two dominant teams who are outgaining opponents by 100-plus yards per game, after gaining 575 or more total yards in their previous game are 51-18 (73.9%) ATS over the last 10 seasons. The Rams are 4-0 ATS in their last four games following a loss. Bet Colorado State Saturday.
|09-28-19||Ohio State v. Nebraska +18||Top||48-7||Loss||-110||80 h 57 m||Show|
20* Ohio State/Nebraska ABC No-Brainer on Nebraska +18
This line was Ohio State -10 when it came out in the offseason at the Golden Nugget. Oddsmakers have adjusted 7.5 points. I think the value is on Nebraska in this game.
Ohio State is overvalued off its 4-0 SU & 3-1 ATS start this season against one of the easiest schedules in the country. They are coming off a 76-5 win over Miami Ohio last week.
Meanwhile, Nebraska is 3-1 SU but 1-3 ATS and undervalued now because of it. The Huskers should be 4-0 but they blew a 17-0 halftime lead at Colorado. And last week’s 42-38 win at Illinois was one of the most misleading finals of the week. Plus it was a lookahead spot to this Ohio State game, and the Huskers didn’t show up with their full focus.
Nebraska had a 32-14 edge in first downs over Illinois They had a 671-299 yard edge, outgaining the Fighting Illini by 372 total yards. But they were -3 in turnovers, which is the only reason it was close. Adrian Martinez was awesome, throwing for 327 yards and 3 scores, while also rushing for 118 yards. He is the reason they have a chance here against Ohio State.
Remember last year, Nebraska only lost by 5 at Ohio State as 17-point dogs. Now they are catching more than 17 at home this time around. It will be a raucous atmosphere in Lincoln Saturday night as fans and players alike have had this game circled all offseason.
Ohio State has been able to run all over the bad defenses they’ve faced, averaging 262 rushing yards per game and 5.9 per carry. Well, they won’t be able to run all over Nebraska. The Huskers have held opponents to just 117 rushing yards per game and 3.1 per carry this season. Their defense is vastly improved, and they have one of the most explosive offenses in the country at 38.0 points per game, 490 yards per game and 6.5 yards per play.
Nebraska is 28-11 ATS in its last 39 after failing to cover 3 of their last 4 games coming in. The Huskers are 6-1-1 ATS in their last 8 conference games. Ohio State is 2-10 ATS in its last 12 games after gaining 450 or more total yards in four consecutive games. Nebraska is 11-2 ATS in its last 13 home games vs. good defensive teams that give up 14 or fewer points per game.
Plays on home underdogs of 14.5 or more points (Nebraska) - after two or more consecutive straight up wins, with a winning record on the season playing another winning team are 41-12 (77.4%) ATS since 1992. Bet Nebraska Saturday.
|09-28-19||Kansas State +5 v. Oklahoma State||13-26||Loss||-110||72 h 20 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday UPSET SHOCKER on Kansas State +5
The Kansas State Wildcats are one of the most underrated teams in all of college football. Chris Klieman was one of the best hires of the offseason coming over from North Dakota State where he won four FCS titles in five years. The guy knows how to coach, and the cupboard wasn’t bare at Kansas State with 14 returning starters.
I backed Kansas State in Week 3 as they went on the road and upset Mississippi State 31-24 as 7.5-point underdogs. Now they’ve had a bye week since, which means they get two full weeks to prepare for Oklahoma State. It’s a Cowboys team they have had a lot of success against, going 4-3 SU & 6-1 ATS in the last seven meetings.
Oklahoma State is in a clear flat spot here. They are coming off a deflating 30-36 loss at Texas last week. They scored a late touchdown to get in the back door and cover, but for the most part Texas controlled that game the entire way. QB Spencer Sanders was only 19-of-32 passing with zero touchdowns and two interceptions against a bad Texas defense.
Kansas State has one of the best defenses in the country. The Wildcats are holding opponents to just 12.7 points per game, 256 yards per game and 4.9 yards per play. They are holding opponents to 8.7 points, 92 yards per game and 0.8 yards per play less than their season averages. It’s a defense that returned eight starters from last year and will be one of the best in the Big 12 this season.
Kansas State’s offense has averaged 44 points per game and rushed for 280 yards per game and 5.6 yards per carry thus far. I have no doubt Klieman knows his best chance to win is to control the time of possession, and they’ll do that with their running game. The Cowboys have not been great against the run as they are giving up 176 rushing yards per game this season. It’s a great matchup for the Wildcats.
Klieman will take a page from Bill Snyder for sure in this one. The Wildcats have been able to run wild on the Cowboys in recent years during their 4-3 SU & 6-1 ATS stretch. Starting with last season, the Wildcats have rushed for 291, 217, and 345 yards in their last there meetings with the Cowboys. Based on what we’ve seen thus far, the Wildcats will have their way on the ground against the Cowboys once again.
Kansas State is 6-1 ATS in its last seven vs. a team with a winning record. The Wildcats are 22-9-1 ATS in their last 32 road games vs. a team with a winning home record. Kansas State is 5-0 ATS in its last five games overall. The Wildcats are 7-1 ATS in the last eight meetings. The Wildcats are 5-0 ATS in their last five trips to Oklahoma State. Take Kansas State Saturday.
|09-28-19||Iowa State -2.5 v. Baylor||Top||21-23||Loss||-115||94 h 29 m||Show|
20* Big 12 GAME OF THE MONTH on Iowa State -2.5
The Iowa State Cyclones lost a game 18-17 to the Iowa Hawkeyes that they should have won. They outgained the Hawkeyes by 105 yards in that game, but were -2 in turnovers and led the whole way until the 4th quarter. But because they lost that game, the Cyclones are undervalued heading into conference play.
It just goes to show how good of a coach Matt Campbell is with the way his team responded last week. They could have easily been flat off that loss to their in-state rivals, but they came out and dominated with one of their best performances in program history. Indeed, the Cyclones beat Louisiana-Monroe 72-20, which was their most points scored in a game since 1906 when the forward pass was introduced. They racked up 714 total yards, including six total touchdowns from QB Brock Purdy.
The numbers really show just how dominant the Cyclones have been despite being just 2-1 and having a couple close games against both Iowa and Northern Iowa. Iowa State is averaging 39.3 points, 532 yards per game and 7.7 yards per play. They are averaging 12.2 points, 110 yards per game and 1.8 yards per play more than their opponents allow on average. Defensively, they are giving up 21.3 points, 333 yards per game and 4.4 yards per play. They are holding opponents to 7.5 points, 49 yards and 0.7 yards per play less than their season averages.
Baylor comes into Big 12 play overrated due to playing such a soft schedule. The Bears are 3-0, but just 1-2 ATS this season. Their three games have come against Stephen F. Austin, UTSA and Rice. Their performance against Rice last week shows they are vulnerable. They only beat the Owls 21-13 as 27-point favorites. That’s a bad Rice team that is 0-4 and has basically been blown out every game.
Campbell is 9-1 ATS when playing against a team that has greater than a 75% winning percentage as the coach of Iowa State. Campbell is 6-0 ATS vs. teams that outscore opponents by 17-plus points per game as the coach of the Cyclones. The Cyclones are 9-3-1 ATS in their last 13 road games. The Bears are 3-8 ATS in their last 11 home games. Take Iowa State Saturday.
|09-28-19||Virginia +12.5 v. Notre Dame||20-35||Loss||-103||69 h 45 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Non-Conference KNOCKOUT on Virginia +12.5
I love the spot for Virginia here. They come in undervalued after nearly losing to Old Dominion in a 28-17 win as 27-point favorites where they needed a second-half comeback. It was a clear flat spot and a lookahead spot off their win over Florida State and with Notre Dame on deck. Now, with a bye on deck next week, Virginia will be ‘all in’ this week.
Notre Dame went 12-0 in the regular season last year and made the four-team playoff. After losing to Georgia 17-23 last week, Notre Dame now has almost no shot at making the playoff again. I think they’ll still be deflated from that defeat, and they won’t bring 100% focus into this game against Virginia. I also think the Fighting Irish are getting too much respect now after playing Georgia closer than oddsmakers thought. Everyone was on Georgia in that game it seemed like as they failed to cover as 14.5-point favorites.
Virginia has a legit defense that is holding opponents to 18.0 points, 264 yards per game and 4.1 yards per play. They are holding opponents to 76 yards per game and 0.9 yards per play less than their season averages. And the Cavaliers are led at QB by Bryce Perkins, who is completing 65.3% of his passes while also rushing for 193 yards and two scores. He is one of the better quarterbacks in the ACC.
Virginia’s 30-14 win at Pitt in the opener looks even better now. Pitt nearly upset Penn State on the road as a 17-point dogs, and they came back last week and upset UCF as a double-digit dog last week. That was the Cavaliers’ only road game this season, and it was their best performance of the year. Bronco Mendenhall will have them ready for a physical came against Notre Dame on the road here, which is just the way they like it.
I actually think Virginia is the more physical team up front on both sides of the ball. Notre Dame is giving up 204 rushing yards per game and 4.9 per carry this season. Virginia is only allowing 75 rushing yards per game and 2.2 per carry. The team that stops the run best usually wins, and there’s no question Virginia is better equipped to stop the run in this game based on what we’ve seen thus far.
Notre Dame is 8-24 ATS in its last 32 games vs. excellent defensive teams that allow 285 or fewer yards per game. Mendenhall is 11-1 ATS off a non-conference game as the coach of Virginia. The Cavaliers are 13-3 ATS in their last 16 vs. a team with a winning record. Virginia is 5-1 ATS in its last six vs. Independent schools. The Fighting Irish are 2-10-1 ATS in their last 13 after accumulating less than 100 yards rushing in their previous game. Bet Virginia Saturday.
|09-28-19||Wake Forest v. Boston College +7||27-24||Win||100||69 h 44 m||Show|
15* ACC PLAY OF THE DAY on Boston College +7
The Wake Forest Demon Deacons are getting way too much respect here from oddsmakers. They are off to a 4-0 start this season and overvalued as a result. They won three home games against Utah State, UNC and Elon, as well as a road win at Rice in their only game away from home thus far. They haven’t done anything impressive as they barely beat both UNC and Utah State and home. Utah State lost almost everyone from last year, and UNC was on a short week and coming off a huge win against Miami, putting them in a letdown spot.
Conversely, Boston College is undervalued because everyone remembers their shocking 24-48 home loss to Kansas. They clearly went through the motions in that game and didn’t even show up. Their other three games have been impressive, and more of a sign of the team they are than that Kansas game. They beat VA Tech 35-28 as 4-point home dogs in the opener, crushed Richmond 45-13 at home, and went on the road and beat Rutgers 30-16 as 7.5-point favorites. I like the way they responded from that Kansas loss with the win at Rutgers.
Now Boston College has been humbled and refocused after that Kansas loss. They still have everything in front of them as they are 1-0 in ACC play and can get to 2-0 here. I really like what I’ve seen from this Boston College offense as they have averaged 33.5 points, 457 yards per game and 251 rushing yards per game. The problem with their defense is that they have lost the time of possession, averaging just over 26 minutes per game on offense while their defense has been on the field for 34 minutes per game. That should change moving forward with how well they’ve been able to run the football.
This will be the best offense that Wake Forest has faced this season. The Demon Deacons have good defensive numbers, but that’s more due to the ease of the schedule of opposing offenses. They did give up 35 points and 596 yards to Utah State, and they will be hard-pressed to slow down AJ Dillon and Antony Brown in this one. Brown has a 6-to-0 TD/INT ratio and is averaging 7.8 yards per attempt, while also rushing for two scores this year. Dillon has rushed for 468 yards and accounted for seven total touchdowns.
Plays on any team (Boston College) - an excellent rushing team that average 4.8 or more yards per carry against a good rushing team (4.3 to 4.8 YPC), after allowing 100 or fewer rushing yards last game are 76-34 (69.1%) ATS over the last five seasons. Steve Addazio is 8-1 ATS vs. teams who commit one or fewer turnovers per game as the coach of Boston College. The Eagles are 12-3-1 ATS int heir last 16 conference games. Roll with Boston College Saturday.
|09-28-19||Northwestern +25 v. Wisconsin||15-24||Win||100||65 h 16 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Early ANNIHILATOR on Northwestern +25
Northwestern definitely came into the season overvalued after winning the Big Ten West in one of the best seasons in program history. And now they’re off to a 1-2 SU & 0-3 ATS start this season, failing to meet expectations. I believe this is the perfect time to ‘buy low’ on Northwestern now that everyone has counted them out.
It’s the perfect storm too because it’s the perfect time to ’sell high’ on Wisconsin. The Badgers are 3-0 SU & 3-0 ATS this season with wins over South Florida, Central Michigan and then Michigan last week. Clearly, Michigan was overrated as they needed overtime to beat Army in their previous game. The Badgers will have a hard time getting up for Northwestern after their win over Michigan last week.
This is the role Northwestern has played their best under Pat Fitzgerald. Indeed, Northwestern has actually gone 10-8 STRAIGHT UP as a double-digit underdog over the last 10 years. Not only are they covering, they are winning outright in these spots more time than not.
Northwestern has been an underdog to Wisconsin each of the last five years. They have gone 3-2 SU & 4-1 ATS in those five games with both of their losses coming by 14 points or less. Northwestern loves a good Big Ten street fight where it’s a battle of the trenches. They are one of the few teams that can hold up against a team like Wisconsin with one of the best front seven’s defensively in the Big Ten.
The 10-31 home loss to Michigan State last week was closer than the final score showed. The Wildcats were only outgained by 74 yards, but they committed three turnovers, which proved to be the difference. I would argue Michigan State may have the best defense in the country, and Northwestern was able to run for 140 yards on them.
Fitzgerald is 8-0 ATS after gaining 3.75 or fewer yards per play in its previous game as the coach of Northwestern. Paul Chryst is 5-15 ATS after gaining 6.25 or more yards per play in their previous game as the coach of Wisconsin. The Wildcats are 10-2 ATS in their last 12 games after scoring less than 20 points in their previous game. Northwestern is 19-7 ATS in its last 26 road games. The Wildcats are 20-7 ATS in their last 27 games off a double-digit home loss. The Badgers are 2-8 ATS in their last 10 games off a win. Roll with Northwestern Saturday.
|09-27-19||Duke v. Virginia Tech -2.5||Top||45-10||Loss||-110||49 h 33 m||Show|
20* Duke/VA Tech ESPN No-Brainer on Virginia Tech -2.5
The Virginia Tech Hokies had big expectations coming into the season due to returning 16 starters, including 10 on defense. But after getting upset by Boston College on the road in their opener, and failing to cover in wins over Old Dominion and Furman, I believe this is a great time to ‘buy low’ on the Hokies.
The Hokies have actually outgained all three of their opponents this season. The only reason they lost to Boston College was because they turned the ball over five times. In fact, they already have 9 turnovers this season through three games. That’s not going to continue.
Now Justin Fuente has had two full weeks to correct the mistakes with his team. I expect the Hokies to come through with their best performance of the season Friday night. They still have everything in front of them as they control their own destiny in the ACC and can still win the Coastal Division. If they are going to, this is a must-win against Duke.
I’m surprised at all the Duke love in this game. They lost by 39 to Alabama in the opener, and have played a few cupcakes since in NC A&T and Middle Tennessee. This is a Duke team that only returned 12 starters, including 4 on offense and lost their QB Daniel Jones as the 6th pick in the 1st round of the NFL Draft.
Virginia Tech owns Duke, going 13-2 SU in the last 15 meetings. They won by 17 on the road last year as 6.5-point dogs, and by 21 at home in 2017 as 17-point favorites. And it’s clear the Hokies are improved defensively this season with all they brought back.
They are holding opponents to 23.0 points, 329 yards per game and 4.8 yards per play. They are holding opponents to 50 yards per game and 0.6 yards per play less than their season averages. This inexperienced Duke offense will have a problem trying to move the football on this Bud Foster defense, which is back to the standards we expect from him and the Hokies after a down year last season. Duke is averaging 27 yards per game less than their opponents give up on average.
The Hokies are 8-2 ATS in their last 10 home games vs. a team with a winning road record. Virginia Tech is 5-0 ATS in its last five Friday games. The Hokies still have one of the best home-field advantages in the country, especially during these weeknight games. The Blue Devils are 1-4 ATS in their last five games following an ATS win. Bet Virginia Tech Friday.
|09-26-19||Navy v. Memphis -10.5||23-35||Win||100||26 h 33 m||Show|
15* Navy/Memphis ESPN ANNIHILATOR on Memphis -10.5
I always like fading triple-option teams like Navy when their opponent has extra time to prepare. And that’s the case this week as Memphis has nearly two full weeks to get ready for this game after last playing on September 14th. Plus, they’ve played Navy each of the last two years, so they know what to expect.
Memphis is legitimately one of the best Group of 5 teams in the country. And they’re off to a flying start this season, going 3-0 SU & 2-1 ATS. They beat Ole Miss 15-10 at home and outgained them by 191 yards in what was a bigger blowout than the final score showed. They beat Southern 55-24 and outgained them by 317 yards. And last time out they won 42-6 as 20.5-point favorites at South Alabama and outgained them by 282 yards.
The Tigers have been one of the most dominant teams in all of college football thus far. They always have an explosive offense every year, but the difference with this team is the improvement on defense. They returned eight starters on defense this season. They are holding opponents to 13.3 points per game, 226 yards per game and 3.9 yards per play. They are holding opponents to 8.7 points, 104 yards per game and 1.1 yards per play less than their season averages. Stopping the run will be key in this game, and Memphis is giving up just 116 rushing yards per game and 3.1 per carry thus far.
Navy isn’t the juggernaut it used to be. The Midshipmen are coming off a 3-10 season and a second consecutive loss to Army. They only returned four starters this season and are inexperienced. Sure, they are 2-0, but those two wins have come against Holy Cross and East Carolina. Holy Cross is one of the worst teams in FCS, and ECU is one of the worst teams in FBS. This is a huge step up in class for them.
I realize one of Navy’s three wins last year came against Memphis, but I think that works in our favor here. Navy won 22-21 and held the ball for nearly 43 minutes. Memphis moved the ball on them with ease, averaging 7.7 yards per play, but they committed four turnovers to give the game away. That places the Tigers in revenge mode, and with two weeks to prepare, they will be ready for this challenge. It will be a raucous atmosphere in Memphis for a Thursday night home game as well with the Tigers having one of the best home-field advantages in the country.
Memphis is 25-11 ATS in its last 36 games as a favorite of 10.5 to 21 points. Current head coach Mike Norvell is 9-2 ATS as a favorite of 10.5 to 21 points as the coach of Memphis. Ken Niumatalolo is 5-14 ATS in road games off a bye week as the coach of Navy. The Tigers are 6-1 ATS in their last seven conference games. Memphis is 19-7 ATS in its last 26 games off a bye week. The Tigers are 18-8-1 ATS in their last 27 home games vs. a team with a winning record.
Finally, Memphis is 7-0 ATS under Mike Norvell off a bye week. They have covered their last five in this spot while covering the spread by a total of 56 points. This one has blowout written all over it. Take Memphis Thursday.