College Football Picks - Free Weekly ATS Predictions
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It’s difficult determining if Maryland is as good as the team who at home in their opener beat a good Texas team 34-29 or are they more like the team that was never in it on the road against Michigan in a 42-21 shellacking? I think they’re closer to the first one. The Terrapins had an extra week to add to their overconfidence after a 42-13 crushing of the Gophers and came out flat against the Wolverines. Iowa has played well from the “get go” losing only to Wisconsin who were able to move the ball well on the ground against them racking up 210 yards on 44 carries for a 4.8 YPC. Maryland has a similar style offense to the Badgers but can be slowed down on the ground as shown against Temple and Michigan. On the other side of the ball, the Terps have had difficulty against teams with a balanced offense which the Hawkeyes do possess. However, Iowa comes into this game with a few things against them. They'll be without first-string fullback Brady Ross whose strength is opening holes for the running game and as an outlet receiver on 3rd downs. Iowa may also be limited in the passing game with weather reports forecasting winds in the mid 20’s. I foresee a tight defensive battle similar to the Hawkeyes game against the Cyclones earlier this season.
There is little doubt that FIU will probably win this game. However, covering by this quantity of points could be quite hard to come by. Both teams are due for a correction against the market. Often high point spreads such as these generate such a correction. With this being said, Rice offers tremendous value here as they have a favorable match-up from an offensive schematic perspective. Even if FIU gets up big, there is plenty of backdoor potential here. However, Rice won't have to resort to such measures they will keep this one closer than their line indicates. This is more likely to be a two-score game.
This game will be one that is physical and probably defensive-oriented which is more or a rarity for Pac 12 teams. However, the teams involved are more inclined to roll up their sleeves than dazzle spectators. Nevertheless, Southern California is the more battle-tested of the two outfits, and they will march into Salt Lake City and continue their winning ways.
The Cowboys have been in similar predicaments before when we saw the supremely undervalued in their own stead. For the upperclassmen on Wyoming, 2016's wins over Air Force and Boise State ring a bell and come to mind. Look for these results to be the material that Cowboys hone to take it to Utah State. An upset is not out of the question by any means. Take the points.
Florida Atlantic will implement a heavy dose of Devin Singletary, and the rest will be history. A coached up Owls will find itself in the position their best win of the year and emerge back on both the conference and perhaps New Year’s Six radar with a win here. Tremendous value here on a likely short-priced favorite.
When you play teams like Fresno State, and Miami in your out-of-conference schedule that makes wins against Temple and Rutgers look like a dime-a-dozen for the likes Buffalo. Toledo overall has a played a tougher schedule compared to Buffalo, and they also know how to win at this level, as they are reigning and defending champs of the conference. These intangibles will fuel Toledo to a much-needed home win in what will be a close game. However, the Rockets will still cover the low-hanging fruit in the process.
Both of these teams are part of a conference that has quickly established itself as the top Mid Major in the country with three teams currently ranked in the AP Top 25. A few early losses have worked against Temple when it comes to national recognition, but the fact that the Owls are favored in this matchup tells you just how good they really are.
Cincinnati is undefeated for a reason. I see this contest turning into a three-point game either way so I will take the 3.5 points and the Bearcats to cover.
The Spartans have struggled to run the ball this season ranking 110th in the nation. They come into this game without their starting left guard David Beedle and may be without their starting right guard Kevin Jarvis, so I don't look for that to change this week. Michigan State has had success passing the ball, but they were kept in check by Indiana 219 yards and Central Michigan 185 and will be without their No. 2 receiving option in WR Cody White. They face a pass D that is ranked high in both yards per game and sacks. In their last game, Penn State held Ohio State to 74 passing yards below their previous season low, and the lack of a running game can have their defense teeing up on Brian Lewerke. The Nittany Lions have had an extra week to prepare for the Spartans, and while this is a big line and a public play, I believe Penn State is the way to go here.
Hawaii is already eligible for a bowl game this year, so in that regard, they have met expectations and shattered them in the way they did it. Now it is time for the Rainbow Warriors to come back to orbit. BYU is the best team that Hawaii likely has faced all season and the Cougars will make it their business to make sure they know.
The strength of schedule is a big factor in determining the actual quality of two teams. On paper, CC looks better, but they played a far easier program to get where they are. That difference will be instrumental in determining the victor here. For Monroe, this contest is a step back, and they will take full advantage. The Warhawks outright get the call.
Pittsburgh could be an exciting test for Notre Dame coming off a pair of lopsided victories against ranked teams, but I am not sure that the Panthers have the talent on both sides of the ball to keep things close if the Irish bring their "A Game".
Notre Dame has failed to cover in the two games it closed as a double-digit favorite, but its offense continues to get stronger and stronger with each passing week. My lean is towards the Irish covering the three touchdowns at home, but my ‘best bet’ play in this one is the OVER on the 56-point total line.
The Buffaloes bread and butter is their offense. While they have exceptional talent scattered across the ranks, they have yet to go up against a defense as good as USC’s. The Buffaloes have been giving the punches all year long, now they will be getting a few tossed back at them. Given the fact, we don’t know what kind of jaw this team has, the more seasoned of the two will prevail. Swallow the points.
For those that wish to back Middle Tennessee State after what it had achieved, you can find yourself caught in a zig-zag. This is a terrible spot to be in. There is a reason why the Blue Raiders are dogs here yet again for the third week in a row against a team that is inferior in quality to both Marshall and Florida Atlantic. MTSU will likely come in flat here against a weaker opponent, and it will cost them against a team primed to be a live dog looking for a statement win this season.
The Cyclones will get out swinging early against the Mountaineers and look to make this a four-quarter game. If they do so, the home field advantage can ultimately influence the outcome of this contest, and the Cyclones will put themselves on the national radar with an exclamation point.
South Florida is off to a strong start behind an offense that knows how to score early and often. Tulsa has played well against the tougher competition it has faced, but it does not have the playmakers on offense to run with the Bulls in this conference clash.
I went against the Golden Hurricane last week against Houston, and it cost me, but even with this game in their own backyard, the spread is going to be tough to cover. Lay the points on Friday night and take South Florida SU and ATS.
Rivalry games produce the unexpected, and you can rest assured that the Eagles will be looking to end Western Michigan's recent spate of supremacy in this series. This perhaps is one of their better chances to do so, and they will cash in. Eagles get the call outright.
This is a game that has upset written all over it. San Jose State is hungry for a win. Colorado State is looking to re-group. When you combine these narratives with home field against the Rams, you can keep the points we will take the Spartans outright on the Money Line.
We will go ahead and give away the field goal-plus points and play this one as an outright upset. Had Wyoming put up any form of a fight against Boise State last week, the narrative would have been far contrasting this week. The bottom line also is that Hawaii seems lucky against cupcakes more than they are any good. This is a team that after all owns wins over two overrated teams in Colorado State and Navy while beating up Rice and Duquesne to round off their victories. Hawaii gets exposed this weekend.
Each of these teams has exceeded expectations with their fast starts out of the gate to add even more importance to getting a win in this matchup. There has to be some genuine concern with AJ Dillon's playing status for this game. My lean with still be towards NC State playing at home as the better all-around team.
Even if Dillon can go, he will most likely be limited to take away a big chunk of BC's running game. This sets the stage for an NC State win at home both SU and ATS.
Look this line opened at Iowa -3 and was quickly bet up to -6, and in this case, I think the steam may be correct. The Hawkeyes racked up 404 yards against the Badgers which was nearly 100 yards greater than they had allowed in a game this season. They rushed for 148 yards against Wisconsin surpassing the 100 yard mark for the fourth time this season. I don’t expect Iowa to have a problem running this week against a Minnesota team that was ripped for 315 yards on the ground last week by Maryland. The Gopher’s ability to run the ball will decide this game. Minnesota did have three consecutive games with over 100 yards rushing before last week’s 94, but what is a concern is the yards per carry. Excluding their opener against NMSU, they have been held to 2.9 yards or less per carry and now face Iowa’s top stop unit that did allow 210 to Wisconsin but held it’s first three to 126 yards on 82 attempts!