|Date||Match Up||Rating||Score||Result||Profit||Lead Time||Analysis|
|09-28-13||Iowa -1 v. Minnesota||23-7||Win||100||62 h 58 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Big Ten Line Mistake on Iowa -1
The Iowa Hawkeyes have looked very sharp to start 2013 en route to a 3-1 start. Their only loss came against Northern Illinois on a last-second field goal, which is the same NIU team that played in a BCS Bowl last year. This team came into 2013 underrated off a 4-8 season last year in which the Hawkeyes lost five games by a combined 16 points.
Iowa is coming off its best game of the season in a 59-3 romp of Western Michigan, which is the same team that played Michigan State to a 13-26 game on the road. It held the Broncos to 209 total yards, forced four turnovers, and scored on special teams and defense. It was the kind of effort the Hawkeyes really needed as they head into Big Ten play this week.
Minnesota has yet to be really tested in the early going. Its four opponents have been UNLV, New Mexico State, Western Illinois and San Jose State. It was favored in all four games, and a double-digit favorite in three of them. Minnesota relies heavily on its running game as it is gaining 282 yards per game on the ground, and only 105 per game through the air. Iowa has the perfect antidote as it ranks 12th in the country against the run, allowing just 91.5 rushing yards per game and 3.7 per carry.
They Golden Gophers really don
|09-28-13||Oklahoma v. Notre Dame +3.5||35-21||Loss||-105||62 h 60 m||Show|
15* Oklahoma/Notre Dame NBC No-Brainer on Notre Dame +3.5
The Fighting Irish have already played a much tougher schedule than Oklahoma. They have faced the likes of both Michigan and Purdue on the road as well as Michigan State at home. Oklahoma
|09-28-13||Florida State -21.5 v. Boston College||Top||48-34||Loss||-104||62 h 2 m||Show|
20* ACC GAME OF THE WEEK on Florida State -21.5
The Seminoles came into the 2013 season underrated due to losing several starters to the NFL draft. The fact of the matter is that Jimbo Fisher doesn
|09-28-13||Toledo v. Ball State -2||24-31||Win||100||62 h 34 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday No-Doubt Rout on Ball State -2
Ball State is a much-improved team in 2013 and a legitimate contender to win the MAC this season. It returned 13 starters, including seven on an offense that put up 33.6 points and 457 total yards per game a year ago en route to a 9-4 campaign. Quarterback Keith Wenning is back after completing 65.4 percent of his passes for 3,094 yards with 24 touchdowns and 10 interceptions a year ago.
Wenning has all of his top skill players back. Leading rusher Jahwan Edwards (1,410 yards, 14 TD) returns, as do each of the top five receivers from a year ago, including Willie Snead (89 receptions, 1,148 yards, 9 TD) and Jamill Smith (69, 706, 6 TD). Wenning and company have averaged 42.2 points and 474.7 total yards per game en route to a 3-1 start in 2013.
Wenning is completing 62.3 percent of his passes for 1,315 yards with nine touchdowns and two interceptions, while also rushing for two scores. Edwards has been held to 130 yards and four touchdowns, but Horactio Banks has picked up the slack, rushing for 300 yards and five touchdowns. Snead has 28 receptions for 480 yards and four touchdowns, while Smith has added 17 grabs for 298 yards and one touchdowns.
I like Ball State's chances of moving the ball and scoring points at will against a Toledo defense that returned just four starters from last year while losing four of its top five tacklers, including Dan Molls (166 tackles, and Robert Bell (100 tackles). I also don't believe Toledo's offense, which is averaging just 25.0 points and 385.0 total yards per game, has the firepower to keep up with the Cardinals in this one.
Both quarterbacks return from last year's 34-27 Ball State victory at Toledo. Wenning went 29 of 42 passing for 280 yards and three touchdowns in the win, while Terrance Owens was held to 14 of 27 passing for 215 yards and one touchdown in the loss. Ball State's only loss this season came at North Texas by a final of 27-34. Despite gaining 496 total yards, the Cardinals committed five turnovers, which did them in. Look for Wenning and company to take much better care of the football in a key game Saturday that could determine the West MAC Title.
The Cardinals are 6-1 at home over the last two seasons with their only loss coming last year to Northern Illinois (23-35), which went on to win the MAC and play in a BCS Bowl game. Ball State is 17-6 ATS in its last 23 games overall. The Cardinals are 21-7 ATS in their last 28 games after accumulating more than 280 yards passing in their previous game. Ball State is 5-1 ATS in its last six conference games. The Cardinals are 4-1 ATS in their last five home games. Ball State is 6-2 ATS in its last eight meetings with Toledo. Roll with Ball State Saturday.
|09-28-13||Oklahoma State -18 v. West Virginia||21-30||Loss||-108||58 h 29 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Early ANNIHILATOR on Oklahoma State -18
This is an Oklahoma State Cowboys team that returned 15 starters from last season
|09-27-13||Middle Tennessee State v. BYU UNDER 59.5||Top||10-37||Win||100||46 h 7 m||Show|
20* CFB Friday Night Total DOMINATOR on Middle Tennessee/BYU UNDER 59.5
I'm siding with the UNDER Friday night in this game between the Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders and BYU Cougars. I look for this to be a blowout as well, but mainly because BYU's defense shuts down Middle Tennessee, not because the Cougars pile on a ton of points. They have opened 1-2 this season and will be playing with a chip on their shoulder because of it.
BYU's defense has held its own against three very good offenses in Utah, Texas and Virginia. It is only allowing 20.0 points and 356.7 total yards per game against those teams, who combined to average 33.6 points and 452 total yards per game. That means they have held those three opponents to 13.6 points and nearly 100 total yards per game less than their season averages. This is a top-notch BYU defense that will shut down a Middle Tennessee team that hasn't faced a defense nearly as fierce as this one.
Another aspect that benefits the under is that BYU is primarily a running team and it will eat up clock as it puts together long, extended drives on the ground. The Cougars are rushing for 307 yards per game and only completing 34.8 percent of their passes on the season. You can bet they will be keeping it on the ground all game long in this one. Middle Tennessee also likes to run the football, averaging 196 rushing yards per game.
With both teams relying heavily on the run, it's imperative that each squad be good against the run. That has been the case for both teams in this season. In fact, Middle Tennessee is only yielding 3.7 yards per carry, while BYU is giving up just 3.2 yards per carry. This is strength versus strength ladies and gents, which clearly favors the UNDER.
BYU is 10-1 UNDER in home games when playing against a good team (Win Pct. 60% to 75%) since 1992. The Cougars are 22-5 UNDER vesus good rushing teams - averaging >=4.75 rushing yards/carry since 1992. BYU is 34-17 UNDER when the total is between 56.5 and 63 since 1992. Bronco Mendenhall is a perfect 8-0 UNDER in home games vs. good offensive teams - scoring 31 or more points/game as the coach of BYU. The UNDER is 10-1 in Cougars last 11 Friday games. The UNDER is 13-3 in Cougars last 16 vs. a team with a winning record. Bet the UNDER in this game Friday.
|09-26-13||Virginia Tech +7 v. Georgia Tech||Top||17-10||Win||100||31 h 8 m||Show|
20* VA Tech/GA Tech ACC on ESPN ANNIHILATOR on Virginia Tech +7
Rarely will you find Virginia Tech catching a touchdown or more against anyone. The fact of the matter is that this team has overcome some adversity to open 3-1 this season. It has played a much tougher schedule than Georgia Tech as Alabama, East Carolina and Marshall are all quality opponents. The best team Georgia Tech has faced is North Carolina, and it needed to erase a 20-7 deficit in that contest to win at home last week. Its other two opponents have been Elon and Duke.
Virginia Tech is coming into this game way undervalued due to the nature of its close victories the past two weeks against ECU and Marshall teams that are better than they get credit for. The Hokies are winning games with their defense, allowing just 17.2 points and 233.2 total yards per game. From what I
|09-21-13||Auburn +17 v. LSU||21-35||Win||100||43 h 26 m||Show|
15* Auburn/LSU ESPN Saturday Night BAILOUT on Auburn +17
This is a completely different Auburn team with the arrival of first-year head coach Gus Malzahn. The former offensive coordinator at Auburn for three years, including the 2010 season in which the Tigers went 14-0 and won the BCS Championship, Malzahn has brought a different mentality to this team. Remember, he took Arkansas State to a Sun Belt Title last season in his first year there, and he is making his mark on Auburn already.
The good news for Malzahn is that many of the players on this team were recruited to run his system before he bolted for Arkansas State. The offensive mastermind has this Auburn offense scoring 31.0 points and averaging 441.0 total yards per game en route to a 3-0 start. Those three victories came against the underrated trio of Washington State, Arkansas State and Mississippi State. I would certainly argue that Auburn has played a tougher schedule than LSU to this point.
This has been a very closely-contested series in recent years. In fact, seven of the last nine meetings have been decided by a touchdown or less. That includes a 12-10 road victory for LSU last season despite being an 18-point favorite in that contest. Now, as a 17.5-point favorite in the rematch in 2013, LSU is overvalued once again. This is an improved Auburn defense that has eight starters back from last season and is only allowing 17.7 points per game thus far, which is less than what LSU (19.0) is giving up.
Auburn is 4-0 against the spread in its last four games following an ATS loss. LSU is 5-17 against the number in its last 22 games as a home favorite of 14.5 to 21 points. LSU is 30-52 against the spread in home games against SEC opponents since 1992. Auburn is 6-0 against the number after a game where it forced no turnovers over the last three seasons. LSU is 14-28 against the spread in its last 28 home games vs. good team that is outscoring its opponents by 10 or more points per game. Roll with Auburn Saturday.
|09-21-13||SMU +29.5 v. Texas A&M||13-42||Win||100||43 h 40 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Undervalued Underdog on SMU +29.5
This is a huge letdown spot for Texas A&M. The Aggies just lost on ESPN
|09-21-13||Arizona State +6.5 v. Stanford||Top||28-42||Loss||-110||43 h 45 m||Show|
20* ASU/Stanford Pac-12 GAME OF THE MONTH on Arizona State +6.5
I believe that the Sun Devils are a legitimate Pac-12 Title contender. They are certainly the best team in the South and should play in the Title game come season
|09-21-13||Louisiana-Lafayette -5.5 v. Akron||35-30||Loss||-110||42 h 39 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Under the Radar BLOWOUT on Louisiana-Lafayette -5.5
Akron nearly upset Michigan last week in Ann Arbor. As a result, it is getting way too much respect from oddsmakers against a superior Louisiana-Lafayette team Saturday. I look for the Zips to suffer a hangover from that defeat to the Wolverines. They were stopped at the 1-yard line in the closing seconds, which is how close they came to pulling off the upset. Akron's players won't be able to recover in time to face the Rajin' Cajuns Saturday.
Louisiana-Lafayette is underrated right now due to opener the season 0-2 with road losses to Arkansas and Kansas State. It would rebound with a 70-7 victory over Nicholls State last week, and now I look for it to roll the rest of the season after getting its two toughest games of the year out of the way. Remember, this team went 9-4 last season and returned 13 starters and 56 lettermen from that squad. This is arguably the best team in the Sun Belt.
Akron, meanwhile, is just 2-13 over the past two seasons. Its only two wins have come against FCS opponents in Morgan State and James Madison. It barely beat James Madison (35-33) at home in Week 2 while getting outgained 498-356 for the game. It was blown out 7-38 in the opener by UCF, which is much more indicative of the talent on this team. Michigan simply just went through the motions last week off a big win over Notre Dame the previous week, and it nearly cost the Wolverines. They committed four turnovers against the Zips.
Lafayette is 6-0 against the spread vs. poor passing defenses - allowing 250 or more passing yards/game over the last 3 seasons. The Rajin' Cajuns are 8-0 against the number after a playing a game where 70 total points or more were scored over the last 3 seasons. The Zips are 0-5 against the spread in their last five home games. Akron is 0-6 against the number in its last six home games off one or more consecutive overs. These four trends combine for a 25-0 system backing Louisiana-Lafayette. Plus, the Rajin' Cajuns are 20-7 ATS in their last 27 road games. Roll with Louisiana-Lafayette Saturday.
|09-21-13||Michigan State +4.5 v. Notre Dame||Top||13-17||Win||100||39 h 16 m||Show|
20* MSU/Notre Dame Rivalry GAME OF THE MONTH on Michigan State +4.5
Admittedly, the Spartans did not look sharp offensively in beating Western Michigan by 13 and South Florida by 15 in their first two games to open the season. It was no secret that this offense was going to struggle in the early going after last year. However, it was also no secret that Michigan State was going to possess one of the best defenses in the entire country. That has proven to be the case thus far due to seven starters and seven of the top nine tacklers back on that side of the ball.
Michigan State is only allowing 12.0 points and 177.0 total yards per game en route to a 3-0 start. It has also forced eight turnovers to this point. There
|09-21-13||West Virginia v. Maryland -4.5||Top||0-37||Win||100||39 h 14 m||Show|
20* CFB Saturday No-Doubt Rout on Maryland -4.5
The Maryland Terrapins are one of the most improved teams in the country this season. They went just 4-8 last year due to injuries at the quarterback position. They were down to their 6th-string QB due to a fluke of injuries, including the starter out of the spring in C.J. Brown. Now, in 2013, they have opened 3-0 with double-digit victories over Florida International (43-10), Old Dominion (47-10) and Connecticut (32-21).
A big reason for that start has been Brown's play. The senior is completing 67.1 percent of his passes for 833 yards with six touchdowns and one interception, while also rushing for 257 yards and five scores. Stefon Diggs, arguably the most underrated receiver in the entire country, has 16 receptions for 387 yards and three touchdowns already. Maryland is one of only three teams in the nation that has compiled 500 or more yards of total offense in each of their first three games this season.
West Virginia went just 7-6 last season despite having a plethora of talent on offense in QB Geno Smith and WR's Tavon Austin and Stedman Bailey. All three players were taken within the first three rounds of the NFL draft. Now, with only 10 starters back, including three on offense, the Mountaineers are clearly in rebuilding mode. They are off to an ugly start to 2013 as well.
The Mountaineers opened with a 24-17 victory over William & Mary despite being a 31.5-point favorite. They managed just one touchdown in a loss to Oklahoma the next week in a game that was a bigger blowout than the final score would indicate. They also failed to cover against Georgia State last week, which is a team that has lost to Samford (21-31) and Chattanooga (14-42) at home. The score was only 20-7 WVU before the Mountaineers scored 21 points in the fourth quarter to make the game appear to be a bigger blowout than it really was.
Maryland actually had a pretty strong defense last year in allowing just 337 total yards per game despite being on the field a ton due to inept quarterback play. It has been even stronger in 2013, allowing just 13.7 points and 296.3 total yards per game. In their 31-21 loss at West Virginia last season, the Terrapins were playing with their fourth-string quarterback. They easily covered as a 26-point underdog and were only outgained 363-351 for the game. There's no question that the Terrapins are the superior team in 2013, and they'll get revenge in blowout fashion Saturday.
West Virginia is 5-15 against the spread in its last 20 road games vs. ACC opponents. The Mountaineers are 0-5 against the spread in their last five non-conference games. The Terrapins are 5-0 against the number in their last five games overall. West Virginia is 5-16 against the spread in its last 21 road games versus good defensive teams that allow 4.5 yards per play or less. Take Maryland Saturday.
|09-21-13||Tennessee +16.5 v. Florida||17-31||Win||100||39 h 9 m||Show|
15* Tennessee/Florida CBS Saturday No-Brainer on Tennessee +16.5
The Volunteers are clearly on the rise under new head coach Butch Jones, who spent three years at Central Michigan and three years at Cincinnati before coming here. Jones is a proven winner, leading the Chippewas and Bearcats to at least a share of the conference championship four out of those six years. He inherited a Tennessee team with a lot of talent and 13 returning starters.
Tennessee opened the season 2-0 with blowout victories over Austin Peay (45-0) and Western Kentucky (52-20). I
|09-21-13||North Texas +34 v. Georgia||21-45||Win||100||36 h 0 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Non-Conference KNOCKOUT on North Texas +34
The North Texas Mean Green are a much improved team in 2013. Dan McCarney has done a fine job at this program in exceeding expectations in his first two years on the job. Now, in his third season here, McCarney easily has his best team yet. North Texas returned a whopping 17 starters this season, and that experience has led the program to a solid 2-1 start.
North Texas has beaten Idaho (40-6) and Ball State (34-27) at home for its two wins. Its only loss came at Ohio (21-27) against a very underrated Bobcats
|09-21-13||San Jose State +4 v. Minnesota||24-43||Loss||-115||36 h 40 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Upset Special on San Jose State +4
The Minnesota Golden Gophers are way overrated right now due to playing a very easy schedule to this point. UNLV and New Mexico State are two of the worst teams in the FBS. Also, Western Illinois is an FCS opponent, and the Gophers did not look sharp against them despite being a 24-point favorite and winning 29-12. In fact, Minnesota is only outgaining those three opponents by an average of 40.3 yards per game thus far.
San Jose State continues to be a covering machine, opening 2-0 against the number with a win over Sacramento State (24-0) as a 20-point favorite, and a loss at Stanford (13-34) as a 24-point underdog. This team does have plenty of talent back from last year
|09-20-13||Boise State v. Fresno State -3||Top||40-41||Loss||-120||44 h 31 m||Show|
20* Boise/Fresno MWC GAME OF THE MONTH on Fresno State -3
The Fresno State Bulldogs got their first conference title since 1989 last season under first-year head coach Tim DeRuyter. Many believe this is a sleeper team to crash the BCS due to returning 16 starters, including quarterback Derek Carr. They were +171.5 yards per game in Mountain West play last year which was 52 yards per game better than Boise State.
Carr is coming off a season in which he completed 67.3 percent of his passes for 4,104 yards with 37 touchdowns and seven interceptions. He has guided the Bulldogs to a 2-0 start this season while completing 71.2 percent of his passes for 661 yards with eight touchdowns and one interception thus far. The offense has averaged 46.5 points and 460.5 total yards per game in wins over Rutgers and Cal Poly.
Boise State is in rebuilding mode this season and is nowhere near as strong as it has been over the past decade. It returns only nine starters and was embarrassed 6-38 at Washington in its opener. It followed that up with unimpressive victories over cupcakes in Tennessee-Martin and Air Force at home. The Broncos gave up a ridiculous 592 total yards in the loss to Washington, so Carr and company could certainly have their way with this suspect defense as they look to get revenge and put a halt to a 7-game losing streak in the series.
The Broncos are just 3-11 against the spread after scoring 37 or more points in their last game over the past three seasons. Boise State is 3-12 against the number in its last 15 conference games. The Bulldogs are 5-0 against the number in their last five conference games. Fresno State is 12-4 against the spread in its last 16 games overall. The favorite is a perfect 11-0 against the spread in the last 11 meetings in this series. Bet Fresno State Friday.
Note: I recommend buying Fresno State to -3 if you have to.
|09-19-13||Clemson -13.5 v. North Carolina State||26-14||Loss||-110||18 h 15 m||Show|
15* Clemson/NC State ACC ANNIHILATOR on Clemson -13.5
The Tigers are a legitimate national title contender in 2013. They opened the season with an impressive 38-35 victory over Georgia after closing out their 2012 campaign with a win against LSU. After beating two of the top teams in the SEC, there
|09-14-13||Wisconsin v. Arizona State -5||Top||30-32||Loss||-110||52 h 17 m||Show|
20* Wisconsin/ASU ESPN Saturday Night BAILOUT on Arizona State -5
I fully expect the Sun Devils to compete for a Pac-12 Title in 2013. That
|09-14-13||Ole Miss +3 v. Texas||44-23||Win||100||50 h 46 m||Show|
15* Ole Miss/Texas SEC vs. Big 12 No-Brainer on Ole Miss +3
Hugh Freeze has the Ole Miss football program on the rise. After guiding Arkansas State to 10 wins and a Sun Belt Title in his first year there in 2011, Freeze came to Ole Miss and got the Rebels to their first bowl game since 2009 last season. Now, with 19 returning starters and 59 lettermen, this team is clearly a sleeper in the SEC West Division.
The defense is loaded with 10 returning starters. The offense welcomes back QB Bo Wallace, who completed 63.9 percent of his passes for 2,994 yards with 22 touchdowns and 17 interceptions, while also rushing for 390 yards and eight scores last year. Also back is leading rusher Jeff Scott as well as the top three receivers from 2012. Ole Miss is off to a solid 2-0 start, which included an impressive 39-35 victory at Vanderbilt in its opener.
Texas is in a world of hurt right now. It just gave up 679 total yards, including a ridiculous 550 rushing in a 21-40 loss at BYU last week. It will be changing defensive coordinators, but Greg Robinson cannot go out and play the game for his team. The fact of the matter is that Texas simply lacks good players on the defensive side of the football. Also, QB David Ash suffered a head injury in the loss and is expected to sit this week. Texas will have a hard time stopping an Ole Miss offense that is averaging 35.0 points and 510.5 total yards per game through its first two contests.
Don't underestimate the power of revenge. Sure, Texas will be motivated off its loss to BYU, but the Rebels want this one more after suffering their worst loss of the season to the Longhorns last year by a final of 66-31. Ole Miss is 15-5 in its last 20 non-conference games. The Rebels are 5-1 against the number in their last six road games. The Longhorns are 2-8 against the spread in their last 10 home games vs. a team with a winning road record. Freeze is 21-6 against the spread in all games he has coached. Freeze is 10-2 against the number in road games as a head coach. Take Ole Miss Saturday.
|09-14-13||Maryland v. Connecticut +7||32-21||Loss||-115||49 h 15 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Night Line Mistake on Connecticut +7
This line is an overreaction from the results in the early going. Maryland has had two blowout wins, while Connecticut has had an ugly home loss to an FCS opponent. That provides some nice line value here with the home underdog, especially when you consider the Huskies have had two weeks to steam over their loss to Towson, and to prepare for Maryland. They last played on Thursday, August 29, so it has actually been over two weeks since they last played.
|09-14-13||Florida Atlantic +13 v. South Florida||Top||28-10||Win||100||49 h 47 m||Show|
20* CFB Saturday Upset Special on Florida Atlantic +13
Despite being a covering machine, Florida Atlantic continues getting disrespected from oddsmakers. I'm 2-0 backing FAU this season with covers against Miami and East Carolina on the road. I'll back them again in Week 3 as they should not be a 13-point underdog to the lowly South Florida Bulls. I actually believe the Owls will win this game outright, but I'll take the points for some insurance.
FAU returned 15 starters from a team that was much better than its 3-9 record would indicate last season. It played a brutal schedule that included Alabama and Georgia, and the schedule hasn't been any easier in the early going with road games at ECU and Miami. It has handled itself well, and now it is battle-tested heading into this showdown with South Florida, which is by far its easiest game yet.
Carl Pelini's Owls returned 15 starters and 54 lettermen from last year's team, so this is a very experienced bunch. Meanwhile, South Florida is in rebuilding mode with just 13 starters and 43 lettermen back, and a new head coach in Willie Taggart. He takes over a USF program that has gone 8-16 over the past two seasons, including a 3-9 campaign last year.
South Florida has looked terrible in its 0-2 start. In fact, it lost to McNeese State 21-53 in its opener despite being a 20.5-point home favorite. While it did keep last week's game against Michigan State close, it still lost 6-21 and managed a mere 155 total yards. The offense has been atrocious for the Bulls, averaging just 13.5 points and 248.5 total yards per game. USF quarterbacks are completing just 37.9 percent of their passes on the season.
Florida Atlantic is 10-2 ATS in its last 12 games overall. The Owls are 6-0 ATS off a road loss over the last two seasons. USF is 0-6 ATS as a favorite over the last two years. South Florida is 0-7 ATS in its last 7 games after scoring less than 20 points in its previous game. FAU is 8-0 ATS in its last 8 road games. The Bulls are 0-6-1 ATS in their last 7 home games vs. a team with a losing road record. USF is 0-5 ATS in its last 5 games following an ATS win. These last six trends combine for a perfect 38-0 system backing the Owls. Take Florida Atlantic Saturday.
|09-14-13||Kent State +37 v. LSU||13-45||Win||100||49 h 46 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Undervalued Underdog on Kent State +37
With their SEC opener on deck against Auburn, this could be a big look-ahead spot for the LSU Tigers. They are getting a ton of love after covering the spread in their first two games against TCU and UAB. Asking them to win by more than 37 points against Kent State is asking a little too much in this one. I could easily see them just going through the motions here.
Remember, Kent State went 11-3 last season and was an overtime loss to Northern Illinois away from likely playing in a BCS game. The cupboard isn
|09-14-13||Memphis v. Middle Tenn State OVER 52||15-17||Loss||-111||49 h 46 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Total DOMINATOR on Memphis/Middle Tennessee OVER 52
I fully expect a shootout Saturday between Memphis and Middle Tennessee State. This has been a high-scoring series of late is one of the reasons I'm backing the OVER. Another is that both defenses are atrocious, so the offenses should have their ways in this one.
Memphis gave up 30.3 points per game last season. The defense is off to a poor start after allowing 470 total yards to Duke in the opener. Middle Tennessee gave up 28.0 points per game last year. It is off to a poor start as well, giving up averages of 32.0 points and 441.0 total yards per game while opening 1-1 against Western Carolina and North Carolina.
Both offenses should be improved this season. Memphis returned eight starters from an offense that put up 28, 37, 46 and 42 points over its final four games last season. Middle Tennessee has nine starters back from an offense that put up 31-plus points in six different games last year. The Blue Raiders are off to a hot start offensively, averaging 32.5 points and 438.0 total yards per game through two contests.
The last two meetings in this series have been shootouts. Middle Tennessee beat Memphis 38-31 at home in 2011 for 69 combined points. The Blue Raiders were also victorious on the road in 2012 by a final of 48-30 for 78 combined points. Given those recent meetings, plus the poor defenses and improved offenses, these two teams should have no problem combining for more than 52 points in this one.
The OVER is 4-0 in Tigers last 4 games following a S.U. loss. The OVER is 5-1 in Tigers last 6 vs. CUSA opponents. The OVER 13-4-2 in Blue Raiders last 19 games after allowing more than 450 total yards in their previous game. The OVER is 8-3-1 in Blue Raiders last 12 games following a S.U. loss. The OVER is 9-4-1 in Middle Tennessee's last 14 games vs. a team with a losing record. Roll with the OVER in this game Saturday.
|09-14-13||Washington -9.5 v. Illinois||34-24||Win||100||48 h 45 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday No-Doubt Rout on Washington -9.5
The Huskies have put together identical 7-6 seasons in each of Steve Sarkisians last three years on the job. Now, Sarkisian finally has his best team yet with 18 starters and 58 lettermen returning in 2013. Washington is a real sleeper to win the Pac-12 this season, and it showed what it is capable of with a 38-6 season-opening victory over Boise State in Week 1.
Washington thoroughly dominated Boise State, outgaining it 592-346 for the game. To no surprise, this offense that returned 10 starters from last season was extremely explosive. Quarterback Keith Price completed 23 of 31 passes for 324 yards with two touchdowns and one interception. Bishop Sankey, who rushed for 1,439 yards and 16 touchdowns a year ago, picked up right where he left off. Sankey ran for 161 yards and two scores against Boise State.
The Huskies' offense put up those gaudy numbers against Boise State even without tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins. He was suspended due to an offseason DUI, but is expected to return this week against Illinois. That's a huge bonus considering Seferian-Jenkins caught 69 balls for 850 yards and seven touchdowns last year. He'll be a match-up nightmare for the Fighting Illini.
Illinois is coming off a 2-10 season in head coach Tim Bekman
|09-14-13||UCLA Bruins +4.5 v. Nebraska||41-21||Win||100||42 h 46 m||Show|
15* UCLA/Nebraska ABC Early ANNIHILATOR on UCLA +4.5
First and foremost, the Bruins are coming off a bye week following their 58-20 drubbing of Nevada in their opener. Getting two weeks to prepare for Nebraska is certainly a huge advantage heading into this one. UCLA pretty much dominated the Huskers in last year
|09-13-13||Air Force v. Boise State OVER 57||Top||20-42||Win||100||20 h 1 m||Show|
20* Air Force/Boise State ESPN Friday No-Brainer on OVER 57
From what I've seen from both defenses thus far, I have no doubt this is going to be a shootout tonight between Air Force and Boise State. These teams combined for 63 total points in a 37-26 Boise State victory in their most recent meeting in 2011, and I look for 63-plus in this one as well.
Air Force lost 20-52 at home to Utah State last week. It gave up 577 total yards in the defeat. I look for Boise State to approach 50 points against this soft Falcons' defense. The Broncos put up 63 points on Tennessee-Martin last week.
Boise State's opener showed how vulnerable its defense really is this year. The Broncos gave up 38 points and a ridiculous 592 total yards to Washington in Week 1. Boise State even allowed 357 total yards to Tennessee-Martin last week.
With the lack of experience each team has back on defense from last year, it's easy to see why both stop units are struggling in the early going. Boise State only returned four starters on defense and lost 10 of its top 16 tacklers from a year ago. Air Force only has six starters back on defense and loses each of its top three tacklers who had 128, 101 and 92 tackles, respectively.
Air Force is a running team that is averaging 285 rushing yards on 5.1/carry thus far. Boise State has been horrible against the run, giving up 207 rushing yards per game and 4.1 per carry. The Broncos gave up 268 rushing yards on 5.0/carry against Washington in Week 1.
The OVER is 6-1 in Falcons last 7 games in September. The OVER is 4-1 in Broncos last 5 games after accumulating more than 450 total yards in their previous game. Bet the OVER in this game Friday.
|09-12-13||Troy +7.5 v. Arkansas State||34-41||Win||100||54 h 54 m||Show|
15* Troy/Arkansas State Sun Belt ANNIHILATOR on Troy +7.5
The Trojans appear to have turned the corner in 2013. Remember, this is a team that has won or shared five straight Sun Belt Titles from 2006-
|09-12-13||Tulane +7.5 v. Louisiana Tech||Top||24-15||Win||100||54 h 39 m||Show|
20* Tulane/LA Tech Conference USA No-Brainer on Tulane +7.5
Louisiana Tech is clearly in rebuilding mode in head coach Skip Holtz
|09-07-13||Texas v. BYU +7||21-40||Win||100||53 h 57 m||Show|
15* Texas/BYU ESPN 2 No-Brainer on BYU +7
The BYU Cougars have been one of the most underrated teams in the country for years. They have won 10 or more games in five of the past seven seasons under current head coach, Bronco Mendenhall. That includes a 10-3 campaign back in 2011 in which one of those wins came at Texas by a final of 17-16 as a 7-point underdog. The last time the Cougars hosted the Longhorns, they won 47-6.
With eight returning starters on offense, the Cougars are in good shape heading into 2013. They will be highly motivated for a victory after giving their Week 1 game away to Virginia in a 16-19 road loss. In fact, BYU outgained Virginia 362-223 for the game. Quarterback Taisom Hill threw for 175 yards and a touchdown, while also rushing for 42 yards and a score. Jamaal Williams, the top returning rusher, ran for 144 yards on 33 carries in the loss.
Many expected Texas to be improved defensively, but that may not be the case after a poor performance against New Mexico State, which went 1-11 last season. The Longhorns allowed 346 total yards to the Aggies, which is certainly a bad showing. NMSU quarterback Andrew McDonald had a very good game, completing 32 of 46 passes for 242 yards with one touchdown and one interception. Texas will not be able to get enough stops against BYU to win by more than a touchdown Saturday.
Plays on home underdogs of 3.5 to 10 points (BYU)
|09-07-13||Notre Dame v. Michigan -3.5||30-41||Win||100||52 h 9 m||Show|
15* Notre Dame/Michigan ESPN Saturday Night BAILOUT on Michigan -3.5
Many believe that the Wolverines will make a run at a Big Ten Title in 2013. Brady Hoke finally has his system in place and doesn
|09-07-13||UAB +35 v. LSU||17-56||Loss||-115||52 h 47 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Non-Conference KNOCKOUT on UAB +35
Despite the 34-31 Week 1 loss to Troy as a 4.5-point underdog, I have no doubt that the Blazers are going to be much more competitive than they were a year ago. That
|09-07-13||Navy +13 v. Indiana||41-35||Win||100||50 h 12 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Undervalued Underdog on Navy +13
This will be the season opener for Navy as it comes off a solid 8-5 season. With 13 starters back, there is reason to believe that the Midshipmen are going to have another big year. That's especially the case with the return of sophomore quarterback, Keenan Reynolds.
He became the first freshman since 1991 to start for Navy after taking over the job five games into the 2012 seasons. Reynolds flourished, completing 56.5 percent of his passes for 898 yards with nine touchdowns and two interceptions, while also rushing for 649 yards and 10 scores. Not once did Navy lose the turnover battle with Reynolds as the starter, so he's smart beyond his years and knows how to take care of the football.
I believe this line is an overreaction from Indiana winning 73-35 against Indiana State last week. Sure, the Hoosiers have an explosive offense, but giving up 35 points to the Sycamores shows that their defense has a long ways to go. I look for Reynolds and company to control the tempo of this game with their tremendous running game and to score at will on this Indiana defense all game long.
Navy beat Indiana 31-30 last season, and I look for a similar, hard-fought game in the rematch that comes right down to the wire. The Midshipmen rushed for 257 yards as a team in the win. Reynolds went 8 of 13 passing for 96 yards and a score, while also rushing for 66 yards on 17 carries and a touchdown. The defense held Indiana QB Cameron Coffman to 25 of 37 passing for 244 yards with two interceptions.
The Midshipmen are a perfect 7-0 against the spread as a road underdog of 10.5 to 14 points since 1992. The Hoosiers are 5-25 ATS after outgaining opp by 125 or more total yards in their previous game since 1992. Bet Navy Saturday.
|09-07-13||Southern Mississippi +28 v. Nebraska||13-56||Loss||-105||50 h 12 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Afternoon Line Mistake on Southern Miss +28
The books have missed their mark badly on this game Saturday. I look for this contest to come right down to the wire, just as Nebraska's opener against Wyoming did. The Huskers only beat Wyoming 37-34 in their opener and they are one of the most overrated teams in the country in my opinion.
Nebraska will have a solid offense this year behind Taylor Martinez, but the defense is in shambles. Nebraska gave up 70 points to Wisconsin in the Big Ten Championship and 45 points to Georgia in the Capital One Bowl for a combined 115 points allowed in its final two games. The Huskers now part ways with each of their top five tacklers, and eight of their top ten tacklers overall from last year.
That inexperience and lack of talent showed in their 37-34 win over Wyoming last weekend. In fact, the Huskers allowed a ridiculous 602 total yards to the Cowboys last week and were outgained by 72 total yards for the game. Brett Smith threw for 383 yards and four touchdowns, and the Cowboys rushed for 219 yards while averaging 7.3 yards per carry.
Off an 0-12 season, Southern Miss comes into 2013 way underrated. This is a team that has a lot more talent than it gets credit for. They returned 13 starters this year, including nine on defense. This is a team that lost five games last year by 10 points or less and was much better than its record would indicate.
The Golden Eagles actually outgained Texas State 400-207 last week and obviously should have won, but gave the game away by committing six turnovers on a 15-22 defeat. Because of that loss, this line has been set much higher than it should be. Southern Miss lost four fumbles and won't be nearly as careless with the football this week against Nebraska. QB Allen Bridgford threw for 377 yards and a touchdown in the loss, and he's in line for a huge game against this Nebraska defense.
Plays on underdogs of 21.5 to 31 points (SOUTHERN MISS) - after allowing 225 or less total yards in their previous game are 28-7 (80%) ATS over the last 10 seasons. This defense is much improved, and the offense will put up points at will against this soft Nebraska defense. Don't be surprised if this one goes right down to the wire. Take Southern Miss Saturday.
|09-07-13||Duke v. Memphis +4.5||28-14||Loss||-110||49 h 42 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Upset Special on Memphis +4.5
Justin Fuente actually did a very good job of getting Memphis to four wins last year in his first season on the job. It was their most wins since 2008. After a 1-8 start, the Tigers would reel off three straight blowout victories over Tulane (37-23), UAB (46-9) and Southern Miss (42-24) to give them a ton of confidence heading into 2013. Now, they have had all offseason to prepare for Duke knowing that this would be their season opener in Week 2.
I really like this team considering it returns 16 starters and 46 lettermen. Eight starters return on offense, including quarterback Jacob Karam, who completed 64.2 percent of his passes for 1,895 yards with 14 touchdowns and three interceptions a year ago. Also back is leading rusher Brandon Hayes (576 yards, 6 TD), who made the final seven starts at running back last season and played very well down the stretch. The defense returns eight starters, including senior FS Lonnie Ballentine (66 tackles, 3 INT) and junior DE Martin Ifedi (46 tackles, 7.5 sacks).
Plays on home underdogs of 3.5 to 10 points (MEMPHIS)
|09-07-13||Idaho +28 v. Wyoming||10-42||Loss||-103||48 h 11 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Public Overreaction Play on Idaho +28
This line is clearly an overreaction from the final scores of the games that both of these teams played last week. The public is all over Wyoming after a 37-34 loss at Nebraska. It is quick to fade Idaho after a 6-40 loss at North Texas. I'll take these extra points that public perception has created for us and back Idaho for an easy cash Saturday.
Wyoming's 37-34 loss at Nebraska says more about how overrated the Huskers are than how good the Cowboys are. Idaho's 6-40 loss at North Texas was more about how improved the Mean Green are than how bad the Vandals will be this season. This 28-point spread has clearly been inflated due to public perception.
Wyoming is in for a letdown here after coming so close to beating a ranked team last week. I look for the Cowboys to come out flat, which will allow the Vandals to keep the game close in the first half. That will lead to an easy cover as the Cowboys won't have enough firepower to win by four touchdowns in the second half.
Idaho showed some good signs offensively even in that loss to North Texas. It managed 369 total yards in the loss, which would usually equal anywhere in the neighborhood of 20-30 points. However, three lost fumbles really hurt the Vandals and put them behind the eight ball. Freshman quarterback Chad Chalich impressed in his debut, completing 19 of 27 passes for 230 yards and a touchdown. The ground game was effective as well, rushing for 139 yards on 36 carries.
Remember, Wyoming was just a 4-8 team last season with two of those victories coming in overtime. Its four wins came by 3, 5, 7 and 14 points. That 3-point win was a 40-37 (OT) triumph at Idaho. The Vandals actually outplayed the Cowboys in that contest, outgaining them 509-455 for the game. Once again, they gave the game away by losing three fumbles, just as they did against North Texas. So, Idaho will be out for revenge from that loss, too.
The Cowboys are 16-33 ATS in their last 49 games following a S.U. loss. Wyoming is 2-6 ATS in its last 8 home games. While the Cowboys have won three straight over Idaho, those three contests were decided by a combined 20 points. Roll with Idaho Saturday.
|09-07-13||Buffalo +27.5 v. Baylor||13-70||Loss||-110||48 h 41 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday ATS ANNIHILATOR on Buffalo +27.5
The Buffalo Bulls were one of the most underrated teams in the country entering the 2013 season. I was on them last week as a 33.5-point underdog at Ohio State, and they covered with ease in a 20-40 loss. Just as they were undervalued last week, I believe they are once against lacking respect from oddsmakers as a 27.5-point dog at Baylor.
Jeff Quinn has led the Bulls to three progressively better seasons over the last three years with a 2-10 finish in 2010, a 3-9 mark in 2011, and a 4-8 campaign in 2012. Now, with 16 starters and 54 lettermen returning in 2013, this is clearly Quinn's best team yet. I believe Buffalo will be bowl eligible by season's end, and it will compete with a middle-of-the-pack Big 12 team Saturday in Baylor.
The Bears are simply getting too much respect from oddsmakers due to their 69-3 victory over Wofford last week. This is a Baylor team that only returned 12 starters this year, losing three starters along the offensive line, quarterback Nick Florence (4,309 yards, 33 TD) and leading receiver Terrance Williams (97 receptions, 1,832 yards, 12 TD). After playing a cupcake in Wofford, the Bears won't be ready for the fight they are going to get from this underrated Buffalo squad.
BUffalo's offense returns nine starters and really played pretty well in scoring 20 points against a very good Ohio State team. Joe Licata was efficient, completing 19 of 32 passes for 185 yards with two touchdowns and one interception. Branden Oliver, who rushed for 1,395 yards back in 2011, is back and healthy which is huge for this offense. Oliver managed 73 yards on the ground against Ohio State. Alex Neutz, who had 1,015 receiving yards and 11 touchdowns last year, finished with nine receptions for 98 yards against the Buckeyes.
Defensively, the Bulls have a ton of talent returning among their seven starters that are back. In fact, they return eight of their top 10 tacklers. Leading the way is LB Khalil Mack (94 tackles, 21 for loss), DE COlby Way (58 tackles, 7 sacks), CB Najja Johnson (43 tackles, 5 INT) and CB COrtney Lester (39 tackles, 4 INT). This is a team that won three of its final four games last season and heads into 2013 with a lot of confidence because of it. The Bulls will not be afraid of Baylor. Bet Buffalo Saturday.
|09-07-13||Army v. Ball State -7.5||Top||14-40||Win||100||45 h 13 m||Show|
25* CFB Non-Conference GAME OF THE YEAR on Ball State -7.5
The Ball State Cardinals went 9-4 last season in head coach Pete Lembo
|09-07-13||Florida v. Miami (Florida) +3||Top||16-21||Win||100||44 h 12 m||Show|
20* Florida/Miami ESPN Early ANNIHILATOR on Miami +3
In terms of returning talent, the Hurricanes blow the Gators out of the water. Miami has 18 returning starters from a team that went 7-5 last season despite being banned from the postseason. This is clearly Golden
|09-06-13||Central Florida v. Florida International UNDER 53.5||38-0||Win||100||30 h 45 m||Show|
15* UCF/FIU CFB Friday Total DOMINATOR on UNDER 53.5
I'm backing the UNDER in this contest between the UCF Knights and the Florida International Panthers this Friday. I just don't believe Florida International is going to be able to score after what we've seen in the opener for both teams.
Central Florida played a great game defensively in a 38-7 win over Akron. This was a Zips team that has a very underrated offense, and the Knights managed to hold them to just 7 points and 250 total yards. It would be hard seeing the Panthers putting up more than a touchdown in this one after their performance against Maryland.
Florida International was held to just 10 points and 171 total yards in its 10-43 loss to the Terrapins last weekend. This is an FIU offense that returns a mere four starters, and its one that replaced all five starters along the offensive line. Look for UCF defenders to be in the FIU backfield and disrupting things all game long.
Sure, UCF is going to get its points, but it won't be enough to surpass this 53-point total. These teams have squared off each of the last two years with UCF winning 33-20 for 53 combined points last season, and FIU winning 17-10 in 2011 in a game that only saw 27 combined points. I look for something in between in this one in the neighborhood of a 35-7 victory for UCF and 42 combined points.
UCF is 22-7 to the UNDER in its last 29 September games. The Knights are 26-11 to the UNDER In their last 37 non-conference games. FIU is 7-0 to the UNDER as an underdog of 21.5 to 31 points since 1992. FIU is 11-1 UNDER in home games off a loss by 21 or more points since 1992. The Panthers are 7-0 UNDER in home games after being outgained by 225 or more total yds in their previous game since 1992. These last three trends combine for a 25-1 system backing the UNDER. Bet the UNDER in this game Friday.
|09-05-13||Florida Atlantic +20.5 v. East Carolina||Top||13-31||Win||100||32 h 58 m||Show|
20* FAU/East Carolina CFB Thursday No-Brainer on Florida Atlantic +20.5
The Florida Atlantic Owls have clearly been one of the most underrated teams in the country dating back to last season. After their cover as a 31-point underdog at Miami on Friday, the Owls are now 9-2 (82%) against the spread in their last 11 games overall. Carl Pelini
|09-02-13||Florida State -10 v. Pittsburgh||Top||41-13||Win||100||99 h 55 m||Show|
20* FSU/Pitt ESPN Monday ANNIHILATOR on Florida State -10
The Seminoles were actually very close to playing for a national title en route to a 12-2 campaign in 2012. In their two losses to NC State and Florida, they actually led in the second half of both of those contests. Jimbo Fisher has done an excellent job in his first three seasons here, getting FSU to an ACC Title and likely in contention for a national title for years to come. He can simply recruit with the best head coaches in the country.
Florida State only returns 11 starters, but this is still one of the most talented teams in the FBS. Redshirt freshman Jameis Winston could be the next Johnny Manziel at quarterback. He completed 13 of 15 passes for 205 yards and two touchdowns in the spring game. He
|09-01-13||Ohio +21 v. Louisville||Top||7-49||Loss||-110||70 h 25 m||Show|
20* Ohio/Louisville ESPN Sunday No-Brainer on Ohio +21
The Ohio Bobcats enter the 2013 season way undervalued. They quietly went 9-4 last year despite having huge injury problems down the stretch. They even had 10 starters out in a 6-28 closing loss to Kent State. Now healthy, and with 12 starters back, the Bobcats will be an improved team in 2013.
I love the offense with seven returning starters from a unit that put up 31.7 points and 445 total yards per game last year. Remember, this is the same Ohio team that went into Penn State and won 24-14 in its opener as a 6-point dog. QB Tyler Tettleton, who is already the school's career passing leader (6,274 yards), returns. Also back is running back Beu Blankenship, who rushed for 1,604 yards and 15 touchdowns last year. Tettleton has his top target back in receiver Donte Foster (59 receptions, 659 yards, 8 TD) as well.
Louisville enters 2013 way overvalued due to its 11-2 record last season that concluded with a 33-23 victory in the Sugar Bowl against an overrated Florida team. I was even on the Cardinals at +14 in that contest, but I'm fading them to start 2013. Louisville was a very lucky team last year as it won won a whopping eight games by 10 points or less, including six by 7 points or fewer. There's no question this is a quality team with 16 returning starters, but it is not 21 points better than Ohio at home.
The Bobcats have played a BCS team on the road each of the last five years, including the AP #2 and #3 teams at the time. While they are 0-5, they have only been outgained 373-332 and outscored 31-19 on average in those contests. Ohio is 5-1 ATS in its last 6 non-conference games. Louisville is 7-15 ATS in its last 22 home games. Bet Ohio Sunday.
|08-31-13||Boise State v. Washington Huskies -3.5||6-38||Win||100||53 h 13 m||Show|
15* Boise State/Washington Bowl Rematch BAILOUT on Washington -3.5
Off three straight seven-win seasons, Steve Sarkisian and company are ready to take that next step forward in 2013. This will easily be his best team yet as 18 starters and 58 lettermen return from a year ago. Folks in Seattle have to be very optimistic about this season despite drawing a brutal schedule overall, including Boise State in the opener.
All of these returning starters will be highly motivated to avenge their 26-28 Las Vegas Bowl loss to the Broncos. The offense is loaded with 10 returning starters. Senior QB Keith Price threw for 2,726 yards with 19 touchdowns and 13 interceptions last year. Leading rusher Bishop Sankey (1,439 yards, 16 TD) is back. All of Price
|08-31-13||LSU v. TCU +4.5||37-27||Loss||-110||52 h 13 m||Show|
15* LSU/TCU ESPN ANNIHILATOR on TCU +4.5
The TCU Horned Frogs had several things go wrong that contributed to to a poor first season (7-6) in the Big 12 last year. First, they were returning just nine starters last year and were an inexperienced team. Then, quarterback Casey Pachall got suspended and was out for the season after making just four starts. Despite their 4-5 record in the Big 12 last year, they still managed to outgain conference opponents by an average of 33.1 yards per game.
Now, with 16 returning starters, TCU has a great chance to get back to winning 10-plus games in 2013 like it has become accustomed to doing. Pachall will split time with Trevone Boykin, who gained valuable experience last year at quarterback. The defense returns nine starters from the best stop unit in the Big 12 a year ago. TCU only allowed 22.6 points and 324 total yards per game last season despite having just four returning starters. With nine back, this will be one of the best stop units in the country.
TCU has won nine of its last 13 against ranked opponents, and it is a solid 13-4 since 2005 against non-conference BCS schools. Gary Patterson is one of the most underrated head coaches in the entire country. He has past wins over the likes of Wisconsin, Boise State, Oregon State, Clemson, Stanford, BYU and Utah on his list of big victories in recent years.
I look for LSU to take a step back in 2013. That
|08-31-13||Alabama v. Virginia Tech +21.5||35-10||Loss||-110||49 h 43 m||Show|
15* Alabama/VA Tech ESPN No-Brainer on Virginia Tech +21.5
Off a down 7-6 season in 2012, the Virginia Tech Hokies enter the 2013 campaign undervalued. Remember, the Hokies had won at least 10 games for eight consecutive seasons from 2004 to 2011. You can
|08-31-13||Northern Illinois v. Iowa -3||Top||30-27||Loss||-107||47 h 45 m||Show|
20* CFB Saturday No-Doubt Rout on Iowa -3
The Iowa Hawkeyes are coming off a season in which they would like to forget. They failed to win six games for the first time since 2000, finishing 4-8. However, this team was much better than its record would indicate, losing a ridiculous six games by 6 points or less. In fact, five of its eight losses came by 3 points or fewer. It's safe to say that these players will be highly motivated heading into 2013.
Iowa returns 13 starters from last year's squad. While it will be breaking in a new quarterback, it's impossible to get much worse play than what it received from James Vandernberg, who threw just seven touchdown passes last year. Mark Weisman (815 yards, 8 TD, 5.1/carry) is back to carry the load offensively. Also back are three starters along the offensive line, as well as leading receiver Kevonte Martin-Manley and TE CJ Fiedorowicz, who is one of the top tight ends in the country.
Northern Illinois is coming off a 12-2 season last year, which clearly has it overvalued. It has lost head coach Dave Doeren, who has bolted for NC State this offseason. That's a huge blow to the program as Doeren led the Huskies to back-to-back MAC Titles. New head coach Rod Carey will be working with only 12 returning starters, though talented QB Jordan Lynch is back. I look for the Huskies to take a huge step back defensively with only four starters back on that side of the ball. They lose seven of their top 10 tacklers, including Tyrone Clark (86 tackles, 10 for loss, 7 passes defended), Alan Baxter (60 tackles, 9.5 sacks), Rashaan Melvin (55 tackles, 18 passes defended) and Sean Progar (59 tackles, 8.5 sacks).
Iowa will have one of the most improved defenses in the country with seven starters back from a unit that gave up 22.9 points per game. To stop Lynch, a defense must have good linebackers who can pursue the quarterback and make tackles. The Hawkeyes have just that as each of their top three tacklers from last season are back in senior WLB Anthony Hitchens (124 tackles, 5.5 for loss), senior MLB James Morris (113 tackles, 9 for loss) and senior OLB Christian Kirksey (95 tackles, 2 INT).
Iowa is 8-0 all-time versus Northern Illinois with an average margin of victory of 27 points per game. The Hawkeyes have won 12 straight season openers. This play falls into a system that is 34-9 (79.1%) ATS over the last 10 seasons. It tells us to bet against all teams where the line is +3 to -3 (N ILLINOIS) - team that had a winning record last season playing a team that had a losing season, in non-conference games. Take Iowa Saturday.
|08-31-13||Rice +27 v. Texas A&M||31-52||Win||100||44 h 14 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Undervalued Underdog on Rice +27
The Rice Owls will be one of the most improved teams in the country in 2013 after a 7-6 campaign a year ago. I believe they are the best team in Conference USA with 19 starters and 54 lettermen coming back. David Bailiff will have his best team yet, and one that is capable of giving Texas A&M a run for its money. This is a Rice team that has pulled off two upsets (Purdue, Kansas) against BCS opponents over the past two years.
The offense is loaded with nine starters back from a unit that put up 31.8 points and 427 total yards per game. Leading the way will be senior QB Taylor McHargue, who threw for 2,209 yards with 12 touchdowns and five interceptions last year, while also rushing for 667 yards and 11 scores. The defense welcomes back a whopping 10 starters from a unit that will be much-improved after yielding 30.0 points per game last year. In fact, each of the top eight tacklers are back on the stop unit.
Texas A&M starting QB Johnny Manziel, starting CB Deshazor Everett, and starting FS Floyd Raven will all be suspended for the first half of Saturday
|08-31-13||Buffalo +35 v. Ohio State||Top||20-40||Win||100||43 h 14 m||Show|
25* College Football Season Opening GAME OF THE YEAR on Buffalo +35
I fully expect the Buffalo Bulls to be one of the most improved teams in the country under fourth-year head coach, Jeff Quinn. They went just 4-8 last season, but only one of their eight losses came by more than 22 points. That 22-point setback came in their opener at then-No. 6 Georgia as a 38-point underdog. Just as they hung tough against the Bulldogs, they will do so in their opener against Ohio State in 2013.
That's especially likely considering that Buffalo returns 16 starters and 54 lettermen from last year's squad. This is clearly Quinn's best team in his four years here. The offense boasts nine returning starters, including senior RB Branden Oliver, who rushed for 1,395 yards in 2011 before being held to 821 yards in 2012 while playing in only seven games due to injury. Also back is senior receiver Alex Neutz, who caught 65 balls for 1,015 yards and 11 touchdowns last year.
The defense held its own last season, allowing 28.5 points and 364 total yards per game. With seven starters back, including eight of the top 10 tacklers, this stop unit is going to be even better in 2013. Leading the way is two-time, first-team All-MAC LB Khalil Mack (94 tackles, 21 for loss), senior LB Lee Skinner (89 tackles, 8.5 for loss), second-team All-MAC DE Colby Way (58 tackles, 7 sacks) and second-team All-MAC CB Najja Johnson (43 tackles, 5 INT). This is one of the most underrated stop units in the country.
Ohio State enters 2013 as one of the most overrated teams in the FBS. It is getting way too much respect for its perfect 12-0 regular season last year. There was a ton of luck involved to get to those 12 wins. In fact, the Buckeyes won a ridiculous six games by 7 points or less, including two overtime triumphs. The offense will be solid with nine returning starters, but the defense is in a world of hurt with only four starters coming back. Ohio State loses eight of its top 12 tacklers. Plus, it will be without RB Carlos Hyde (suspension) for the opener, who rushed for 970 yards and 16 touchdowns last year. The Bulls will hang tough and get us an easy cover in this one. Bet Buffalo Saturday.
|08-31-13||Purdue +10.5 v. Cincinnati||7-42||Loss||-106||43 h 14 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Upset Special on Purdue +10.5
The Purdue Boilermakers have new life heading into 2013 with a new head coach. Despite making a bowl game the past two seasons, Danny Hope has been fired. I really like the hiring of Darrell Hazell, who led Kent State to a school-record 11 wins last season. This guy is one of the best up and coming head coaches in the country.
There is still plenty of talent left in the cupboard for Hazell considering 13 starters and 48 lettermen return. While the offense only has five starters back, it does have the experienced Rob Henry starting at quarterback. The defense can carry the load early as eight starters and six of the top seven tacklers are back on this side of the ball. That includes junior SS Landon Feichter (80 tackles, 4 INT), senior LB Will Lucas (66 tackles, 6.5 for loss), sophomore CB Frankie Williams (45 tackles, 11 passes defended) and junior DE Ryan Russell (37 tackles, 8.5 for loss).
The Cincinnati Bearcats also suffer some huge losses offensively, so it
|08-30-13||Florida Atlantic +32 v. Miami (Florida)||Top||6-34||Win||100||46 h 8 m||Show|
20* FAU/Miami ESPNU ANNIHILATOR on Florida Atlantic +32
Carl Pelini did a tremendous job in his first year at Florida Atlantic in 2012. This team was much more competitive than its 3-9 record would indicate. Seven of Florida Atlantic
|08-30-13||Western Michigan +28 v. Michigan State||13-26||Win||100||46 h 8 m||Show|
15* WMU/Michigan State Non-Conference KNOCKOUT on Western Michigan +28
The Spartans simply lack the explosiveness to cover such a big number. This is an offense that put up just 20.0 points per game last season. Now, Michigan State loses its most productive player in running back Le
|08-29-13||Ole Miss -3 v. Vanderbilt||Top||39-35||Win||100||74 h 30 m||Show|
20* Ole Miss/Vanderbilt ESPN Thursday No-Brainer on Ole Miss -3
The Rebels are the most experienced team in the SEC with 19 returning starters from last year
|08-29-13||UNLV +14 v. Minnesota||23-51||Loss||-115||23 h 53 m||Show|
15* CFB Thursday Night Line Mistake on UNLV +14
Sure, the Rebels have only won six games over the past three years, but there
|08-29-13||Akron +22.5 v. Central Florida||7-38||Loss||-106||23 h 52 m||Show|
15* CFB Thursday Undervalued Underdog on Akron +22.5
Terry Bowden had very little to work in his first season at Akron last year as the Zips returned only 10 starters. This team was much better than its 1-11 record would indicate, only getting outscored by an average of 9.6 points per game on the year. Now, with 14 starters and 45 lettermen returning, I look for this team to be much-improved in 2013.
The offense welcomes back seven starters, including leading rusher Jawon Chisholm (953 yards, 5 TD). Every receiver returns other than Marquelo Powell, and Kyle Pohl is ready to step in at quarterback after completing 65.5 percent of his passes for 366 yards with five touchdowns and two interceptions a year ago. The defense has seven starters and five of its top seven tacklers back.
Only two of Akron
|08-29-13||North Carolina +13 v. South Carolina||10-27||Loss||-115||22 h 7 m||Show|
15* UNC/South Carolina ESPN Season Opener on North Carolina +13
Larry Fedora did a tremendous job last season in keeping his team focused and getting the Tar Heels to eight wins despite being ineligible for the postseason. Now, eligible for postseason play, UNC is going to be very hungry heading into 2013. It returns 13 starters in all from a team that outscored opponents by a whopping 14.9 points per game on average a year ago.
While the offense loses all-purpose back Giovani Bernard to the NFL, it still possesses one of the best quarterbacks in the country in Bryn Renner, who completed 65.4 percent of his passes for 3,356 yards with 28 touchdowns and seven interceptions last year. Renner is back to lead an offense that put up 40.6 points and 486 total yards per game last season.
UNC also possesses first-team All-ACC LT James Hurst, a senior who will be charged with handling South Carolina DE Jadeveon Clowney for most of the game. I believe the Tar Heels will be able to move the ball and score points against an overrated South Carolina defense in this one. While the Gamecocks bring back Clowney, the fact of the matter is that they lose defensive six starters, including each of their top four tacklers from a year ago. South Carolina will be breaking in three new linebackers, two new starters along the defensive line, and must replace FS DJ Swearinger, who was taken in the second round of the 2013 NFL Draft by the Houston Texans.
With their biggest game of the season on deck against SEC East rival Georgia, the Gamecocks could be overlooking North Carolina enough to fail to cover this double-digit spread. It
|01-07-13||Alabama v. Notre Dame +10||Top||42-14||Loss||-108||124 h 14 m||Show|
20* Alabama/Notre Dame BCS Championship BEST BET on Notre Dame +10
The Fighting Irish have been getting disrespected all season. Many people don
|01-06-13||Arkansas State -3.5 v. Kent State||17-13||Win||100||101 h 44 m||Show|
15* Arkansas State/Kent State GoDaddy Bowl No-Brainer on Arkansas State -3.5
The Arkansas State Red Wolves won the Sun Belt conference for a second straight year thanks to a finish that leaves them as one of the hottest teams in the country heading into their bowl game. They have gone 7-0 straight up and 6-1 against the spread in their last seven games overall. All seven victories came by a touchdown or more.
Kent State comes in deflated following its loss to Northern Illinois in the MAC title game. There
|01-05-13||Pittsburgh v. Ole Miss -3||Top||17-38||Win||100||69 h 44 m||Show|
20* Pitt/Ole Miss Compass Bowl No-Doubt Rout on Ole Miss -3
The Ole Miss Rebels were one of the most improved teams in the country this season. First-year head coach Hugh Freeze did an excellent job with this program by returning it to relevance. They even had three losses all by 6 points or less to Texas A&M, Vanderbilt and LSU, which are three of the better teams in the conference.
Ole Miss comes in with momentum after beating Mississippi State 41-24 in its finale just to become bowl eligible. It was their most dominant performance of the season as the Rebels outgained the Bulldogs 527-333 for the game. Now, they face a Pittsburgh team that doesn
|01-04-13||Texas A&M -3 v. Oklahoma||Top||41-13||Win||100||52 h 44 m||Show|
20* Texas A&M/Oklahoma Cotton Bowl ANNIHILATOR on Texas A&M -3
The Texas A&M Aggies were very close to winning the SEC West with a chance to play for the national title in Kevin Sumlin
|01-03-13||Kansas State v. Oregon -8||Top||17-35||Win||100||28 h 15 m||Show|
20* K-State/Oregon Fiesta Bowl No-Brainer on Oregon -8
|01-02-13||Louisville +14 v. Florida||Top||33-23||Win||100||123 h 43 m||Show|
25* BCS Bowl GAME OF THE YEAR on Louisville +14
The Florida Gators aren
|01-01-13||Wisconsin +7 v. Stanford||14-20||Win||100||95 h 13 m||Show|
15* Wisconsin/Stanford Rose Bowl ANNIHILATOR on Wisconsin +7
The Badgers will at least have a familiar face guiding the program in in former head coach Barry Alvarez. With his credentials, he certainly demands respect from his players. He
|01-01-13||Michigan v. South Carolina -5||28-33||Push||0||91 h 13 m||Show|
15* Michigan/South Carolina Outback Bowl No-Brainer on South Carolina -5
The Gamecocks were just one loss away from playing for the SEC Championship and a shot at a national title. They beat SEC East champ Georgia 35-7, but followed that up with back-to-back road losses to LSU and Florida for their only setbacks of the season. They only lost 21-23 at LSU, and they gave up just 183 total yards to Florida in a game that was much closer than the final score would indicate.
Michigan already played one SEC team this season, and it was not pretty. It lost to Alabama 14-41 on a neutral field on September 1st in a game that was even more of a blowout than the final score would indicate. The Wolverines found themselves down 31-7 at halftime, and they rushed for just 69 yards on 2.4 per carry as a team.
|01-01-13||Northwestern v. Mississippi State +1.5||Top||34-20||Loss||-110||90 h 13 m||Show|
25* College Bowl GAME OF THE YEAR on Mississippi State +1.5
This is the most talented team the Bulldogs have had in the Dan Mullen era. There
|12-31-12||Clemson v. LSU UNDER 59.5||Top||25-24||Win||100||75 h 16 m||Show|
25* College Bowl TOTAL OF THE YEAR on Clemson/LSU UNDER 59.5
The UNDER in the Chick-Fil-A Bowl between Clemson and LSU represents my strongest college football total for the entire 2012-13 bowl season. I believe oddsmakers have inflated this number by more than two touchdowns.
LSU has one of the best defenses in the country, and it is more than capable of shutting down this Clemson offense Monday. The Tigers are only allowing 16.9 points/game this season while ranking 8th in the country in total defense at 296.2 yards/game.
While LSU has been dominant defensively, its has been sub-par on the other side of the ball. It is only scoring 15.5 points/game on the road this season while ranking 74th in the country in total offense at 387.2 yards/game.
Clemson played a defense in its season finale similar to the one that it will face in the Chick Fil A Bowl. It lost to South Carolina 17-27 for 44 combined points in a game that had a total set of 60.5. It was held to just 328 total yards in the loss. I look for a similar combined score in this contest against LSU.
Clemson is 8-0 to the UNDER in all dome games since 1992. We're seeing an average combined score of 34.9 points/game in this spot. LSU is 8-0 to the UNDER in road games vs. poor passing defenses - allowing 250 or more passing yards/game since 1992. We're seeing an average combined score of 40.1 points/game in this situation. These two trends combine for a 16-0 system backing the UNDER over since 1992. Bet the UNDER in the Chick-fil-A Bowl Monday.
|12-31-12||Georgia Tech v. USC UNDER 64||21-7||Win||100||70 h 46 m||Show|
15* Georgia Tech/USC Sun Bowl No-Brainer on UNDER 64
The books have set the bar too high in this Sun Bowl showdown between Georgia Tech and USC. I'll take advantage by backing the UNDER in a game that I foresee neither team scoring more than 31 points.
USC faced some very good rushing teams this season as their opponents averaged 180 yards and 4.4/carry on the ground in 2012. The Trojans clearly have an above-average run D considering they held their opponents to 156 yards/game and 4.0/carry. That's huge considering Georgia Tech runs the triple-option and almost exclusive relies on the run.
USC had a solid offense this season under the guidance of quarterback Matt Barkley. However, Barkley will miss this game due to a shoulder injury, meaning that Max Wittek will get a second straight start in his place.
Things did not go well for Wittek in his first career start as he went just 14 of 23 passing for 186 yards with one touchdown and two interceptions in a 13-22 home loss to Notre Dame in USC's season finale.
Georgia Tech came up with arguably its best defensive performance of the season in the ACC Championship. It held Florida State to just 21 points and 328 total yards while forcing three turnovers in a 15-21 loss. I look for it to build off of that performance and to keep Wittek in company in check.
Georgia Tech is 8-1 to the UNDER after 2 or more consecutive losses against the spread over the last 3 seasons. The UNDER is 6-0 in Trojans last 6 December games. The UNDER is 6-0 in Trojans last 6 games after scoring less than 20 points in their previous game. These three trends combine for a 20-1 (95%) system backing the UNDER. Take the UNDER in the Sun Bowl Monday.
|12-29-12||TCU -2.5 v. Michigan State||16-17||Loss||-110||52 h 49 m||Show|
15* TCU/Michigan State Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl BAILOUT on TCU -2.5
The Horned Frogs have the better offense in this one. They put up 29.3 points per game this season while ranking 61st in the country in total offense at 397.0 yards per game. Michigan State is scoring just 20.2 points per game while ranking 87th in total offense at 370.3 yards per game.
The Spartans lost their three offensive stars from last season in Kirk Cousins, B.J. Cunningham and Keshawn Martin.
|12-29-12||Oregon State -3 v. Texas||27-31||Loss||-115||48 h 9 m||Show|
15* Oregon State/Texas Alamo Bowl ANNIHILATOR on Oregon State -3
The Oregon State Beavers have been one of the most underrated teams in the country all season. That is evident by the fact that they are an impressive 8-4 against the spread in all games, making backers a lot of money at the pay window this year. Their only three losses came on the road against Washington and Stanford by a combined 7 points, and at home against Oregon.
Texas is not playing well coming into this game having dropped two straight against TCU and Kansas State. It managed a combined 37 total points in the losses while committing seven turnovers. It continues to struggle at the quarterback position as head coach Mack Brown keeps going back and forth between David Ash and Case McCoy.
Oregon State is a sound football team on both sides of the ball. It is scoring 33.0 points per game while ranking 34th in the country in total offense at 442.7 yards per game. It is allowing just 19.7 points per game while ranking 33rd in the land in total defense at 353.7 yards per game.
The biggest strength on the Beavers
|12-29-12||West Virginia v. Syracuse +4||Top||14-38||Win||100||45 h 39 m||Show|
20* WVU/Syracuse Pinstripe Bowl No-Brainer on Syracuse +4
The Syracuse Orange have been one of the most underrated teams in the country all season. They gave away some games early, but really came on strong late. They won three straight games to close out the season with a blowout 45-26 home victory over Louisville, followed by impressive road wins at Missouri and Temple. Louisville won the Big East and will be playing in a BCS bowl.
A closer look at the numbers indicates that the Orange are one of the better teams in the country. They rank 21st in the land in total offense at 473.4 yards per game and a respectable 51st in total defense at 385.1 yards per game. They have a huge edge on defense considering West Virginia ranks just 110th in total yards allowed at 469.6.
Syracuse has a mental edge over former Big East rivalry West Virginia having won each of the last two meetings over the past two seasons. It won 19-14 on the road as a 13.5-point underdog in 2010, then came back with an even more impressive 49-23 home victory as a 14-point dog in 2011. Ryan Nassib threw for 229 yards and four touchdowns in the win, and he
|12-28-12||Rutgers v. Virginia Tech -2||Top||10-13||Win||100||48 h 8 m||Show|
20* Rutgers/VA Tech Russell Athletic Bowl No-Brainer on Virginia Tech -2
The Hokies simply underachieved this season after coming into the season with lofty expectations. They did manage to rebound down the stretch, winning their final two games against Boston College and Virginia to become bowl eligible. It would have been three in a row if not for a last-second loss to Florida State by a final of 22-28, which was a game that showed what this team is capable of.
Rutgers is deflated following two straight losses to close out the season. It played Louisville for all the marbles in its season finale on November 29th, but blew a double-digit lead to fall 17-20. That loss cost the Scarlet Knights a trip to the Sugar Bowl against Florida. These players will have hard time getting motivated to play in the Russell Athletic Bowl after letting such a big opportunity slip by.
|12-28-12||Ohio +7 v. Louisiana Monroe||45-14||Win||100||45 h 37 m||Show|
15* Ohio/ULM Independence Bowl Early ANNIHILATOR on Ohio +7
Following three straight losses, there
|12-27-12||Baylor +3 v. UCLA Bruins||49-26||Win||100||29 h 38 m||Show|
15* Baylor/UCLA Holiday Bowl BAILOUT on Baylor +3
The Bears are playing the better football coming into this game. They were absolutely sensational to finish out the season, winning four of their final five games while going a perfect 5-0 against the spread in the process. Their only loss during this stretch came at Oklahoma 34-42 as a 21-point underdog. They beat Kansas 41-14, then-No. 1 Kansas State 52-24, Texas Tech 52-45, and Oklahoma State 41-34, so it
|12-27-12||Cincinnati v. Duke +8||Top||48-34||Loss||-110||25 h 8 m||Show|
20* Bowl GAME OF THE WEEK on Duke +8
The Blue Devils are ecstatic to be playing in a bowl game this season. This is their first trip to a bowl game since 1994. Head coach David Cutcliffe has his best team in five years with the program, and that really showed this season. These players want to be here more than the Cincinnati Bearcats.
Cincinnati had high hopes coming into the season of winning the Big East to play in a BCS bowl game. That didn
|12-26-12||Central Michigan v. Western Kentucky OVER 57||Top||24-21||Loss||-110||68 h 7 m||Show|
20* CMU/WKU Pizza Bowl Total ANNIHILATOR on OVER 57
I look for a shootout in the Little Caesar's Pizza Bowl between Central Michigan and Western Kentucky Wednesday. This game will be played inside a dome at Ford Field in Detroit, MI. That means the scoring conditions will be optimal for these two solid offenses.
Central Michigan really picked up the pace at the end of the season offensively, scoring 30 or more points in six straight games to close out the year. QB Ryan Radcliff is completing 59.0 percent of his passes for 2,895 yards with 20 touchdowns and nine interceptions. RB Zurlon Tipton has rushed for 1,391 yards and 19 scores.
Western Kentucky put up an average of 28.7 points/game this season. RB Antonio Andrews will get plenty of touches as he makes a bid to set a single-season NCAA record for all-purpose yards. Andrews, who rushed for 1,609 yards and 11 touchdowns, also has 957 return yards and 2,977 overall. The junior needs 274 yards to surpass Barry Sanders' mark of 3,250 from his 1988 Heisman Trophy-winning season.
While the Hilltoppers did have a solid defense with three players earning all-conference honors. However, the anchor of that unit - Sun Belt defensive player of the year and defensive end Quanterus Smith - is out due to a knee injury suffered Nov. 17 against Louisiana-Lafayette. He had an FBS-leading 1.25 sacks per game and 12 1/2 overall in 10 games.
Western Kentucky gave up an average of 31.5 points/game over their last four games heading into the Little Caesar's Pizza Bowl. Central Michigan gave up 33.3 points/game this season while ranking 93rd in the country in total defense (441.2 yards/game).
Central Michigan is 7-0 to the OVER in road games after a playing a game where 60 total points or more were scored over the last 3 seasons. The Chippewas are 6-0 to the OVER in road games after a game where they committed 1 or less turnovers over the last 2 seasons. CMU is 6-0 to the OVER in road games vs. excellent ball control teams, 32 or more possession minutes/game over the last 3 seasons. These three trends combine for a 19-0 system backing the OVER. Bet the OVER in the Little Caesar's Pizza Bowl Wednesday.
|12-24-12||SMU v. Fresno State -11.5||Top||43-10||Loss||-101||21 h 52 m||Show|
20* Fresno/SMU Hawaii Bowl No-Brainer on Fresno State -11.5
The Bulldogs have been the best team in the country at the pay window this season. Not only did they go 9-3 and while clinching a share of the Mountain West title, they also went an incredible 11-1 against the spread in the process. This team has certainly been going under the radar all season.
They are outscoring opponents by an average of 18.0 points per game, so they
|12-22-12||Washington +6 v. Boise State||Top||26-28||Win||100||67 h 36 m||Show|
20* Washington/Boise State Las Vegas Bowl No-Brainer on Washington +6
The Washington Huskies played a much tougher schedule than the Broncos did this season, and they are more battle-tested heading into this contest because of it. This will arguably be Boise State
|12-21-12||Ball State +7 v. Central Florida||Top||17-38||Loss||-100||212 h 20 m||Show|
25* Pre-New Year's Bowl GAME OF THE YEAR on Ball State +7
The Ball State Cardinals have been one of the most underrated teams in the country all season. They won nine games with their only losses coming against current Top 25 opponents in Clemson, Northern Illinois and Kent State. They fell to both the Huskies and Golden Flashes by a combined 14 points, and both of those teams went on to play in the MAC title game. In fact, Northern Illinois will be playing in a BCS bowl.
Ball State features a dynamic offense, and it is certainly the superior team on this side of the ball. It is averaging 35.0 points per game while ranking 22nd in the country in total offense at 471.3 yards per game. It is averaging 214.3 yards on the ground and 257.1 through the air. UCF is 58th in total offense at 400.7 yards per game.
Starting quarterback Keith Wenning is expected to return after missing their season finale against Miami (Ohio) with a strained Achilles tendon. He is currently listed as probable, and he
|12-20-12||BYU -2.5 v. San Diego State||Top||23-6||Win||100||189 h 50 m||Show|
20* BYU/San Diego State Poinsettia Bowl ANNIHILATOR on BYU -2.5
The BYU Cougars come in playing well having won three of their last four games overall. All three wins came by 24 or more points, including a 41-17 victory at Georgia Tech. Their lone loss during this stretch came on the road against an underrated San Jose State team by a final of 14-20.
San Diego State has a solid offense, but BYU has the antidote with one of the best defenses in the FBS. It is allowing just 14.7 points per game while ranking 3rd in the country in total defense at 266.3 yards per game.
The Cougars aren
|12-15-12||Toledo v. Utah State OVER 58.5||Top||15-41||Loss||-107||65 h 24 m||Show|
20* Toledo/Utah State Potato Bowl No-Brainer on OVER 58.5
The Famous Idaho Potato Bowl features a match-up between two of the best offenses in the country. I look for a high-scoring affair in this contest between Utah State and Toledo with 60-plus combined points scored by game's end.
Utah State is scoring 34.4 points per game while ranking 26th in the country in total offense at 460.7 yards/game. What makes this offense so difficult to stop is its balance. The Aggies average 193 yards on the ground and 268 through the air.
The Aggies should have their way with a Toledo stop unit that ranks 107th in the country in total defense. They give up a whopping 463.2 yards/game, including 168 on the ground and 295 through the air.
Toledo is putting up 32.9 points/game while ranking 28th in the country in total offense at 456.1 yards/game. It also has tremendous balance as it averages 197 yards on the ground and 259 through the air.
Utah State does have a good defense, but it hasn't faced many offenses nearly as potent as the one it will be facing in this bowl game. Two offenses they've faced that have been comparable are San Jose State and Louisiana Tech. They gave up 27 points in a 49-27 victory over San Jose State on September 13th, and 41 points in a 48-41 victory over Louisiana Tech on November 17th.
Toledo is 6-0 to the OVER after allowing 75 or less rushing yards last game over the last 3 seasons. We're seeing an average of 78.8 combined points on average in this situation. The Rockets are 11-1 to the OVER off a win by 10 points or more over a conference rival over the last 3 seasons. We're seeing an average of 76.0 combined points in this spot. Bet the OVER in this game Saturday.
|12-08-12||Navy -7 v. Army||Top||17-13||Loss||-104||109 h 15 m||Show|
20* Army/Navy Rivalry GAME OF THE MONTH on Navy -7
This is a big mismatch once again in 2012 just as it has been over the past decade in this series. I look for the Navy Midshipmen (7-4) to roll by more than a touchdown over the Army Black Knights (2-9) Saturday in one of the biggest rivalries in the country.
Navy is 10-0 in its last 10 meetings with Army. Most of these games haven't even been close as nine of the ten wins came by 12 points or more. Navy did only win 27-21 last season, but its football program was way down last year. It is back to being dominant once again in 2012, especially of late.
The Midshipmen have won six of their last seven games overall. This amazing run to end the season coincided with a change at quarterback. Freshman Keenan Reynolds led Navy to a comeback win over Air Force on October 6th and he has ran away with the job ever since.
Reynolds gives Navy a dual-threat quarterback with his ability to hit open receivers, which has made all the difference. Reynolds has completed 57.5 percent of his passes for 754 yards with eight touchdowns and one interception. He has also rushed for 585 yards and nine scores.
Navy's ability to pass the ball is going to be one of the biggest reasons they win and cover in this game. Unlike Army, they hardly have to worry about defending the pass. Army quarterback Trent Steelman is completing just 45.9 percent of his passes for 619 yards with one touchdown and two interceptions.
Not only do the Midshipmen have the edge through the air, but they also have the edge defending the run. Navy gives up 161 rushing yards/game and 4.3/carry, while Army yields 238 rushing yards/game and 5.7/carry. Simply put, the Midshipmen have the advantage in every phase of this game and should be a bigger favorite because of it.
Navy is 18-3 ATS in road games when playing against a terrible team (Win Pct. <=25%) since 1992. Army is 0-7 ATS in road games after gaining 275 or more rushing yards in 2 straight games over the last 2 seasons. The Midshipmen are 68-32 ATS in their last 100 road games. The Black Knights are 8-20-1 ATS in their last 29 vs. a team with a winning record. Bet Navy Saturday.
|12-01-12||Nebraska v. Wisconsin +3||31-70||Win||100||51 h 7 m||Show|
15* Nebraska/Wisconsin Big Ten Championship BAILOUT on Wisconsin +3
The Wisconsin Badgers want revenge from a 27-30 loss at Nebraska earlier this season on September 29th as an 11-point underdog. They blew a 27-10 second-half lead in that contest, allowing the Corhuskers to score 20 unanswered points to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat.
Nebraska has been getting away with murder all season, but that's not going to happen again Saturday. The Huskers have escaped with so many close victories over the final minutes of games that you would almost think it's magical.
The Huskers have five wins by 9 points or less, and every one of those games came right down to the wire with the opposing team blowing it in the end. Nebraska is nowhere near as good as its 10-2 record would indicate, and it is not even the better team in this contest.
Beating a team twice in the same season is extremely difficult, especially after the nature of the way the Huskers came back to win by 3 points in their first meeting at home. On a neutral field this time around, I have no doubt that the Badgers have their revenge and earn a trip to the Rose Bowl with a victory.
Wisconsin has an edge in the running game, which is going to be the difference in this game. Both teams rely heavily on the run, and the Badgers stop it better. They rank 13th in the country in rushing defense (111.3 yards/game), allowing just 3.4 yards/carry. Nebraska ranks 72nd against the run (166.2 yards/game), yielding 4.2 yards/carry.
Nebraska is 10-22 ATS in road games versus good rushing teams - averaging >=200 rushing yards/game since 1992. Wisconsin is 21-8 ATS versus excellent offensive teams - averaging >=450 yards/game since 1992. The Badgers are 21-9 ATS after 2 or more consecutive straight up losses since 1992. After closing out the season with back-to-back overtime losses to Ohio State and Penn State, the Badgers are battle-tested heading into this one. Roll with Wisconsin Saturday.
|12-01-12||Florida State v. Georgia Tech +14||Top||21-15||Win||100||51 h 53 m||Show|
20* FSU/Georgia Tech ACC GAME OF THE MONTH on Georgia Tech +14
The Yellow Jackets
|12-01-12||Alabama v. Georgia +8||32-28||Win||100||47 h 53 m||Show|
15* Alabama/Georgia SEC Championship No-Brainer on Georgia +8
The Bulldogs have certainly saved their best football for last. After a shaky start to the season due to suspensions to key players, they have rebounded nicely to win the SEC East for a second straight season. They certainly have a ton of momentum heading into the SEC Championship because of it.
Georgia has won six straight games while going 4-1 ATS in its last five contests dating back to a 17-9 win over Florida, its biggest win of the season. It has outscored each of its last four opponents all by 27 points or more, including a 42-10 victory over Georgia Tech last week.
The biggest difference in this team is that it has finally started to play up to its potential defensively. It has allowed 14 points or less in five straight games, giving up an average of just 8.6 points per game in the process. This was one of the best stop units in the country last season, and it
|11-30-12||UCLA Bruins +8.5 v. Stanford||Top||24-27||Win||100||31 h 18 m||Show|
25* Pac-12 GAME OF THE YEAR on UCLA +8.5
UCLA simply suffered a letdown last week against Stanford. It was coming off its biggest win of the season with a victory over USC the previous week that assured it a spot in the Pac-12 Championship Game. Essentially, the Bruins really had nothing to play for against the Cardinal last week.
|11-30-12||Northern Illinois v. Kent State +7.5||44-37||Win||100||26 h 48 m||Show|
15* NIU/Kent State MAC Championship No-Brainer on Kent State +7.5
The Northern Illinois Huskies are way overvalued heading into this MAC Championship. Kent State has been underrated all season and should not be catching a touchdown in a game I believe they can win outright. I'll take the points for some insurance.
Northern Illinois has not been playing all that sharp of football lately. They beat Toledo 31-24 at home as a 10-point favorite on November 14th, then went on the road to beat Eastern Michigan 14-7 as a 20.5-point favorite on November 23rd. This will be their toughest test of the season thus far.
Kent State is 11-1 this season while dominating along the way. Ten of its 11 wins have come by 7 points or more. The fact that this team is 10-2 ATS on the season shows how undervalued they have been all year. They'll continue making backers money at the pay window tonight.
The biggest reason I like Kent State in this contest is its ability to stop the run. It ranks 27th in the country against the run (129.3 yards/game) while allowing 3.7 yards/carry. That's impressive considering the 12 opponents it has faced average 169 rushing yards and 4.4/carry on the season. Northern Illinois rushes for 245.0 yards/game, so stopping the run is extremely important in this one.
Kent State is 7-0 ATS after playing a conference game this season. The Golden Flashes are 6-0 ATS after covering the spread in 3 out of their last 4 games over the last 2 seasons. Kent State is 7-0 ATS off a win by 10 points or more over a conference rival over the last 2 seasons. The Golden Flashes are 6-0 ATS in their last 6 games after allowing less than 20 points in their previous game. Kent State is 4-0 ATS in its last 4 vs. a team with a winning record. These five trends combine for a perfect 30-0 system backing the Golden Flashes. Take Kent State Friday.
|11-29-12||Louisville v. Rutgers UNDER 44||20-17||Win||100||8 h 12 m||Show|
15* Louisville/Rutgers ESPN Total ANNIHILATOR on UNDER 44
This game between Louisville and Rutgers is for all the marbles with the Big East Championship on the line. Both teams features below-average offenses and great defenses, and I look for a defensive battle tonight because of it.
Rutgers is giving up just 13.7 points/game overall, including 12.0 points/game at home. It ranks 14th in the country in total defense at 317.4 yards/game allowed. Louisville is yielding 24.2 points/game while ranking 26th in the country in total defense at 345.5 yards/game.
Rutgers has really struggled offensively this season as it ranks 100th in the country in total offense at 341.4 yards/game. Louisville has been decent offensively at 44th in the land with 431.3 yards/game, but it has yet to face a defense as dominant as the one it will see tonight.
I look for this contest to result in a similar final score to last year's 16-14 home victory by Louisville. The Cardinals managed just 309 total yards while limiting the Scarlet Knights to 298 total yards. I don't foresee either team topping 20 points in this one, either.
Rutgers is 7-0 to the UNDER when the line is +3 to -3 over the last 2 seasons. The Scarlet Knights are 7-0 to the UNDER after covering the spread in 2 out of their last 3 games over the last 2 seasons. The UNDER is 4-0 in Scarlet Knights last 4 games following a ATS loss. These three trends combine for a perfect 18-0 system backing the UNDER. Take the UNDER in this game Thursday.
|11-24-12||Stanford -1.5 v. UCLA||35-17||Win||100||93 h 52 m||Show|
15* Stanford/UCLA Pac-12 GAME OF THE WEEK on Stanford -1.5
The UCLA Bruins are in a huge letdown spot here. They picked up their biggest win in years with a 38-28 home victory over USC last Saturday, which won them the Pac-12 South title and a trip to the conference championship game.
Stanford is coming off a huge win over Oregon as well, but it still has some work to do to win the Pac-12 North. It would clinch the division title with a win over UCLA Saturday.
I'm not saying UCLA is going to let Stanford win, but it would much rather face the Cardinal in the Pac-12 Championship than Oregon. Either way, when you look at the scenario, there's no question that Stanford is going to be the more motivated team heading into this one.
A great way to compare teams is to look at common opponents. Stanford and UCLA have played the same six opponents this season. The Cardinal are 6-0 against those six teams, outscoring them by 15.0 points/game. The Bruins are 4-2 against those six teams, outscoring them by 11.5 points/game.
The Cardinal have by far the better defense in this one. They are giving up just 16.9 points/game overall, including 10.8 points/game on the road, while ranking 18th in the country in total defense (328.4 yards/game). UCLA is giving up 25.0 points/game while ranking 80th in total defense (420.4 yards/game).
Stanford is 3-0 SU & 3-0 ATS in its last three meetings with UCLA, outscoring the Bruins a combined 114-35. The favorite is 5-1 ATS in the last 6 meetings. The Cardinal are 10-4 ATS in the last 14 meetings.
The Cardinal are 37-16-1 ATS in their last 54 games overall. Stanford is 9-1 ATS vs. poor passing defenses - allowing a comp. pct. of 58% or worse over the last 2 seasons. The Cardinal are 8-1 ATS in all road games over the last 2 seasons. Bet Stanford Saturday.
|11-24-12||Wisconsin v. Penn State -2.5||Top||21-24||Win||100||93 h 49 m||Show|
25* College Football BLOWOUT GAME OF THE YEAR on Penn State -2.5
The Nittany Lions have been undervalued all season due to their problems off the field with the Sandusky scandal. On the field, this has been one of the best teams in the Big Ten. They have gone 7-4 overall, including 8-2-1 ATS to prove that they have been undervalued by oddsmakers all year.
This is Senior Day for Penn State, and since they are serving a postseason ban, they won
|11-24-12||Texas Tech +3 v. Baylor||45-52||Loss||-120||89 h 52 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Undervalued Underdog on Texas Tech +3
This is a huge letdown spot for Baylor after such a big win over Kansas State. It
|11-24-12||Michigan v. Ohio State -3.5||21-26||Win||100||86 h 23 m||Show|
15* Michigan/Ohio State ABC Saturday No-Brainer on Ohio State -3.5
The Ohio State Buckeyes have incredibly managed to stay focused throughout the season despite knowing they have to serve a postseason ban. First-year head coach Urban Meyer has done an excellent job with these players, and there
|11-24-12||Rutgers v. Pittsburgh -2||6-27||Win||100||86 h 22 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday No-Doubt Rout on Pittsburgh -2
The Rutgers Scarlet Knights have absolutely nothing to play for Saturday. They are in a two-way battle with Louisville for 1st place in the Big East. Well, they could lose this game against Pitt and beat Louisville next week to win the conference.
Even if Rutgers wins this game against Pitt, it would still need to beat Louisville next week to win the Big East provided the Cardinals beat UConn this week, which is almost a foregone conclusion. There's no question that these Rutgers players know that this is a meaningless game against Pitt.
Meanwhile, the Panthers still need to win their final two games to become bowl eligible, so it certainly means something to them. Plus, it would make their season to knock off the top team in the Big East this Saturday.
Pittsburgh will come in more prepared mentally and physically to win Saturday. Aside from the fact that Rutgers has nothing to play for, Pitt will be coming off its bye week. That means it will have two full weeks to rest and prepare for the Scarlet Knights.
This is Senior Day for the Panthers, and these players would love nothing more than to send senior quarterback Tino Sunseri out with a victory. Sunseri has completed 67.3 percent of his passes this season and has thrown only two interceptions - none in 202 attempts over his last seven games.
Pittsburgh is a perfect 8-0 ATS vs. mistake prone teams - 60+ penalty yards per game over the last 3 seasons. It is winning in this spot by an average of 13.8 points/game. The Panthers are 11-2 ATS after having lost 2 out of their last 3 games over the last 3 seasons. Pitt is 6-1 ATS in its last 7 home games vs. a team with a winning road record. The Panthers are 16-5 ATS in their last 21 games following a S.U. loss. Take Pittsburgh Saturday.
|11-23-12||LSU v. Arkansas +12.5||20-13||Win||100||65 h 53 m||Show|
15* LSU/Arkansas CBS Friday No-Brainer on Arkansas +12.5
The LSU Tigers don
|11-23-12||Nebraska v. Iowa +15||Top||13-7||Win||100||62 h 23 m||Show|
20* CFB Friday Undervalued Underdog on Iowa +15
The Iowa Hawkeyes should not be more than a two touchdown underdog at home to the Nebraska Cornhuskers Friday. Kinnick Stadium is one of the toughest places to play in the country, and the Huskers aren't about to walk into it and crush the Hawkeyes.
Since Iowa is 4-7 on the season, it will not be going to a bowl game. On Senior Day, and with the motivation of trying to spoil Nebraska's season, the Hawkeyes are sure to give it everything they have. They will treat this contest like their bowl game since it will be the final time they take the field this season.
Nebraska is one of the most overrated teams in the entire country. It is nowhere near as good as its 9-2 record would indicate. The Huskers have gotten away with murder several times this season, squeaking out wins in the closing seconds in victories over Wisconsin (30-27), Northwestern (29-28), Michigan State (28-24) and Penn State (32-23). This team has simply caught all the breaks this season.
Iowa is 16-3 ATS versus excellent rushing teams - averaging >=230 rushing yards/game since 1992. It is winning in this spot by an average of 5.5 points per game. The Hawkeyes are 19-3 ATS versus excellent rushing teams - averaging >=5.25 rushing yards/carry since 1992. It is winning in this spot by 10.5 points per game.
The Hawkeyes are 10-1 ATS in home games off 2 or more consecutive overs since 1992. Iowa is 5-0 ATS in its last 5 games after allowing more than 40 points in their previous game. The Hawkeyes are 35-17-1 ATS in their last 53 games following a S.U. loss. The Cornhuskers are 1-5-1 ATS in their last 7 road games. Nebraska is 25-51-2 ATS in its last 78 games following a SU win of more than 20 points. Bet Iowa Friday.
|11-22-12||TCU +7 v. Texas||20-13||Win||100||50 h 60 m||Show|
15* TCU/Texas ESPN Thursday Night BAILOUT on TCU +7
The Horned Frogs clearly have the better defense in this one, which gives them a chance to keep it close. They are giving up 24.0 points per game this season while ranking 16th in the country in total defense at 326.3 yards per game. It is giving up a solid 374.3 yards per game in conference play, which is saying something in a league comprised of the best offenses in the country.
Texas is yielding 29.1 points per game this season while ranking 85th in the country in total defense at 429.6 yards per game. It has been horrible on this side of the ball in Big 12 play, giving up 34.7 points and 473.0 total yards per game. TCU is averaging 29.7 points and 427.1 total yards per game in conference play, so it should be able to move the ball and score points without a problem Thursday
TCU has played its best football on the road this season. It is 4-1 away from home this year while outscoring opponents 29.2 to 23.4, or by an average of 5.8 points per game. It has road wins over Baylor, West Virginia, Kansas and SMU with its only loss coming at Oklahoma State.
The Horned Frogs are 10-2 ATS in road games after having lost 4 or 5 out of their last 6 games since 1992. TCU is 9-1 ATS in its last 10 games following a S.U. loss. The Horned Frogs are 6-0 ATS in their last 6 games following a bye week. The Longhorns are 2-7 ATS in their last 9 home games vs. a team with a winning road record. Roll with TCU Thursday.
|11-20-12||Akron +19.5 v. Toledo||23-35||Win||100||8 h 0 m||Show|
15* Akron/Toledo MAC Tuesday No-Brainer on Akron +19.5
The Toledo Rockets likely won't even show up tonight. They were eliminated from the MAC title race with a 24-31 loss at Northern Illinois last Wednesday. With nothing to play for tonight, they won't bring the kind of effort it's going to take to cover this huge number against Akron.
The Zips want to end their season on a positive note since they will not be going to a bowl game. They have played some very good teams tough this season. They lost at Tennessee 26-47 as a 32-point underdog. They also lost at Ohio 28-34 as an 18-point dog, and at Kent State 24-35 as an 18.5-point dog.
Under first-year head coach Terry Bowden, the Zips have implemented a high-octane passing attack. They rank 14th in the country in passing offense (317.1 yards/game) and should be able to move the ball at will through the air against a Toledo defense that ranks 116th against the pass (298.8 yards/game).
Akron comes in the more rested team as it last played on November 10th against UMass. Toledo comes in on just five days' rest after playing on Wednesday, November 14th against Northern Illinois. That extra rest and preparation should make a big difference in this one.
Toledo is 13-27 ATS vs. excellent passing teams with a completion pct. of 62% or better since 1992. The Zips are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 road games. The Rockets are 0-5 ATS in their last 5 Tuesday games. Take Akron Tuesday.
|11-17-12||Utah State -3 v. Louisiana Tech||Top||48-41||Win||100||65 h 23 m||Show|
25* WAC GAME OF THE YEAR on Utah State -3
The Utah State Aggies are one of the best teams in the country that not too many people know about. As a result, they continue going under the radar and killing the books at the pay window for people who are willing to back them. I am one of those people, and I will do so again Saturday.
Utah State is 8-2 this season with its only losses coming on the road at Wisconsin and BYU by a combined 5 points. It missed a last second-field goal at Wisconsin, and it lost by only a field goal at BYU. This team has won by 7 points or more in all eight of its victories, including six wins by 22 points or more.
Louisiana Tech is obviously a quality team at 9-1, but it has played a much softer schedule than Utah State. Its lone loss came to Texas A&M at home, and its nine wins have come against Houston (4-6), Rice (4-6), Illinois (2-8), Virginia (4-7), UNLV (2-9), Idaho (1-9), New Mexico State (1-9), UTSA (6-4) and Texas State (3-6).
As you can see, only one of their nine wins have come against a team with a winning record, and those teams have combined for a 27-66 record. I would have to say that the Bulldogs are nowhere near as good as their record, and that will show on the field Saturday.
Utah State is a complete team. It ranks 25th in the country in total offense (463.2 yards/game), including 40th in rushing (187.1 yards/game) and 33rd in passing (275.9 yards/game). It ranks 12th in total defense (303.3 yards/game), including 5th against the run (94.6 yards/game) and 37th against the pass (208.7 yards/game).
Unlike the Aggies, the Bulldogs have some weaknesses, especially on the defensive side of the ball, which will be the difference in this game. Louisiana Tech ranks 121st in total defense (505.7 yards/game), including 117th against the pass (337.8 yards/game). Utah State will get more stops than Louisiana Tech in this one.
Utah State is 9-0 ATS in all games this season. Once again, it is not getting the respect it deserves from oddsmakers as only a 3-point favorite against a much inferior Louisiana Tech team. Bet Utah State Saturday.
|11-17-12||North Carolina State +17 v. Clemson||48-62||Win||100||65 h 52 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Undervalued Underdog on NC State +17
First and foremost, the NC State Wolfpack have the talent to stay with Clemson Saturday aside from any outside motivational factors. They proved that last season while knocking Clemson out of the Top 10 with a 37-13 victory over the Tigers.
Aside from the fact that NC State has the talent to hang with Clemson, a big reason I'm taking the Wolfpack is because this is a huge letdown spot for the Tigers. Florida State, a 31-point favorite over Maryland Saturday, would win the ACC Atlantic division with a win. A loss would send Clemson to the ACC title game if the Tigers beat the Wolfpack.
That FSU/Maryland game kicks off at 12:00 EST, and it's basically a foregone conclusion that the Seminoles are going to win against a Terrapins team playing with their 5th string QB. The Clemson/NC State game kicks off at 3:30 EST, and these Tigers players will surely get wind of the fact that FSU beat Maryland before kickoff.
With the realization that they won't be playing in the ACC Championship Game, the Tigers will have a hard time focusing on the task at hand with little to play for. Remember, this is an NC State team that handed Florida State its only loss of the season, so it has proven it can win big games.
Mike Glennon threw for 253 yards and three touchdowns against Clemson in last season's 37-13 win. Glennon is having another solid season, completing 57.3 percent of his passes for 2,910 yards with 22 touchdowns and 13 interceptions. He will be able to keep the Wolfpack in this game with his ability to move the ball through the air.
NC State is 6-0 ATS after having lost 2 out of their last 3 games over the last 3 seasons. It is winning in this spot by an average of 16.0 points/game. The Wolfpack are 6-1 ATS in their last 7 meetings in Clemson. The road team is 6-1 ATS in the last 7 meetings. Bet NC State Saturday.
|11-17-12||Wake Forest +24 v. Notre Dame||0-38||Loss||-110||65 h 52 m||Show|
15* Wake Forest/Notre Dame NBC No-Brainer on Wake Forest +24
While the Fighting Irish are 10-0 this season, they haven
|11-17-12||USC -3 v. UCLA||28-38||Loss||-115||64 h 22 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday No-Doubt Rout on USC -3
The Trojans are the most talented three-loss team in the entire country. They gave Oregon by far their toughest game so far with a 62-51 home loss to the Ducks. Their other two losses came to Stanford and Arizona on the road by a combined 10 points.