Lots of bets posted since I’m writing this later in the week. There might not even be a part 2 to this week…this might be final:
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Virginia -21 vs Kent State – Great deal. Unadjusted line is 21, but we all know how quick UVA’s stock is rising. As if their defense wasn’t already good, their offense somehow put up 500+ yards on BYU. They upset Louisville during their last home game. Now they’re at home against a Kent State team that’s still missing Dri Archer, and is just an all-around untalented team.
Clemson -10 vs North Carolina – Come on guys, it’s Clemson! This line should have been 14 or so, and looks like it has moved there now. I’m highly surprised that the line wasn’t slanted the other direction after UNC got demolished by ECU, and Clemson played a very strong game and effectively gave one away in Tallahassee.
Wisconsin -32.5 vs South Florida – This should be a low scoring affair for USF. On the other side, the Bulls’ defense has been questionable (NC State scored 49, but UConn scored 17). But the NC State game is a better case study as they ran the ball 53 tiems
Penn State -9 vs Northwestern – Accurate line based on the math but talk about two teams heading in opposite directions. Good luck stopping Hackenberg in Happy Valley this week.
Nebraska -19 vs Illinois – Again a fair line. Congrats to Illinois for eeking out wins over Western Kentucky and Texas State to make themselves look semi-relevant. But barely keeping your head above water vs Sun Belt teams of past and present isn’t the same as being able to stop Abdullah the Butcher. The Illini have given up 400+ total yards per game. The loss to Washington is a good model game for what’s to come against Nebraska: 10 yards per rush, 25 first downs allowed, 450+ total yards allowed.
Bowling Green -4.5 at Massachusetts – This is a perplexing, scary line. I expected the line to be -14, and it came out at -12. Then I watched the line fall down to -7, before finally plummeting to -4.5 yesterday. BGSU’s 51 point loss was no worse than UMass’s 41 point loss, so I don’t know what bettors looking at here. Regardless, the line based on raw power ratings is about 13.5 to 15.5. UMass has shown improvement since last year, but Bowling Green has managed quite well without Matt Johnson and was able to upset Indiana. Down to -4.5 just seems like a great deal and I have to take BGSU to cover.
Boise State -13.5 at Air Force – This is a matchup play and a power rating play. I have the line handicapped at 18.5, but there’s a more important reason for this bet. Air Force’s big strength is its run game (surprise, it’s a service academy). Air Force is averaging 58.5 rushes per game, which ranks #1 in FBS behind Army and Navy. Enter Boise State defense, who is tied for #1 in FBS in rushing defense. This is a similar matchup to Week 3’s TCU vs Minnesota, where Minnesota, who usually relied on the rushing game, was stuffed by a stout TCU rushing defense. The Smurfs must have stolen the Frogs’ defensive playbook, because they’re only allowing 1.8 yards per rush so far this season.
Nevada -2 at San Jose State – Soon after placing this bet the line moved to -5. That’s more like it. Nevada and Air Force are polar opposites in terms of where they stand in the MWC, and I have the line at something more like -10.
Purdue +14.5 vs Iowa – This was a good deal but I hesitated and the line moved down quickly. Now it’s at +9.5 or something.
TCU -32 at SMU – I’m biased, so I just can’t! But my gosh, SMU is starting their
freshman QB backup QB third string QB FOURTH STRING WALK ON QB against a Top 10 defense. But I can think of reasons TCU doesn’t cover too like
1) TCU shows mercy on the poor soul June Jones left to coach Eric Dickersons’ favorite team
2) TCU’s defense allows zero points, but TCU fumbles / Joeckel throws a pick-6 and TCU scores fewer than 40 points out of courtesy.
While I find these possibilities only slightly more likely than Craig James confessing to his crimes, I acknowledge my bias as a Horned Frog.
Remember the Five.