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Week 14 CFB Picks

Hope you all had a happy Thanksgiving – we are back! I’m now 30-28-1 on the season which is the first time I’ve been over .500 all year. It’s better to get hot late than never get hot at all! Not the best slate this weekend but that’s ok because it’s being made up for having the game of the year in BYU @ Coastal Carolina. Let’s get into my Week 14 Card:

#5 Texas A&M (-7) at Auburn, o/u 49 – NOON on ESPN

I haven’t taken A&M seriously all year and for no real reason.  I think it’s probably because it’s the SEC so I think of Alabama, Auburn, LSU, Florida before them.  But they’re 6-1 on the year, #5 in the country and a real contender for the CFP.  They’ve covered every game where they’re less than 10 point favorites, Auburn is 0-2 as underdogs ATS.  Auburn has really struggled against the better teams in the SEC, 7 points is nothing here so it’s time I put some respek on The Aggies name.  Also, everything about this game screams under – Bo Nix, A&M’s defense, Auburn’s 1-7 o/u’s, low total, and that’s why I’m going to take the over.  

My picks: A&M -7 and OVER 49.  These are 3 out of 5 confidence ratings.

Syracuse (+34) at #2 Notre Dame, o/u 51.5 – 2:30PM on NBC

Syracuse lost earlier this season to Clemson by 26 and haven’t lost by over 34 yet.  Something about Syracuse football just screams spoiler to me and it 100% is because they beat Clemson in 2017.  Nearly every stat for both Syracuse and Notre Dame matches up.  PPG scored and PPG allowed, rushing and passing yards gained vs allowed are roughly the same.  So if this is an average game for both of these teams we should expect around a 37-17 game.  34 is a lot of points and I think Syracuse is a team where 34 makes you feel even better.

My Pick:  Syracuse +34, this is a 3 out of 5 confidence rating.

#13 BYU (-10) at #18 Coastal Carolina, o/u 61 – 5:30 PM on ESPNU

This is by far my most anticipated game of the week.  I was excited for Liberty at CC regardless, but BYU has been by far my favorite team to watch this season, with CC a close second.  Coastal Carolina just keeps winning.  I remember when they were ranked for the first time in program history early this year and everyone was expecting them to crumble under the pressure.  Fast forward to week 14 and they’re 9-0 and now hosting College Gameday for the first time.  Good teams win, great teams cover and CC is 7-1-1 ATS this year.  On the other side, BYU is 6-2-1 ATS.  I think that the difference maker in this game is going to be BYU’s defense and Tyler Allgeier being an absolute force in the running game.  Unfortunately I don’t see either of these teams having a CFP chance, but a win here is huge for either program.  I hate to do it, but I love to do it, I’m rolling with the Stormin’ Mormons.

My Pick:  BYU -10, this is a 4 out of 5 confidence rating.

Baylor at #11 Oklahoma (-22), o/u 62.5 – 8PM on FOX

I said a couple of weeks ago that Oklahoma wasn’t really back because they played a few terrible teams and then they waxed Oklahoma State.  So, hand up I was wrong and Oklahoma is definitely back.  I even see people coming up with scenarios where Oklahoma makes the CFP, but I dont see that happening.  They’re 6-2 ATS and Baylor is 2-4-1.  Baylor is a team that casual fans would be very disappointed in because they were one game away from being in the playoffs.  But they lost a ton of players and a lot of their coaching staff, which is showing to put it lightly.  They won their first game v Kansas, lost 5 straight, then just beat K. State.  So basically if you’re not a Kansas team you can chalk your matchup against Baylor as a win.  While they havent been getting blown out, I think they’re significantly worse than Oklahoma State who Oklahoma just beat 41-13.  Like I said, Oklahoma is back.

My Pick:  Oklahoma -22, this is my lock of the week.

Check out more week 14 picks on my Twitter and listen to more picks on the Podcast, new episodes every Friday!

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CFB Week 12 Picks

Back to back 4-1 weeks!  24-25-1 overall and I’m officially back in this thing.  Let’s get over the hump this week.  Also, my apologies for not writing an article last week, but if you are here from Reddit, you should have seen my picks there; you can also hear my picks on the Podcast.  Last week’s slate was the worst of the year and while this week looks better, I’m still not finding myself thrilled about any of these matchups.  Regardless, let’s get in to my week 12 card:

Appalachian State at #15 Coastal Carolina (-5.5), o/u 48 – NOON on ESPN2

I was pumped for the Coastal game last week against Troy and heartbroken when it got cancelled.  Coastal Carolina coming out of nowhere and making a ton of noise has made them one of my favorite teams to follow this season – right alongside BYU, for similar reasons (CC’s teal field is a nice touch as well).  So far this season, Coastal Carolina’s dominance on both sides of the ball is what has made them a legitimately good program; not a gimmicky one who just seems to win by scoring 80 points per game.  They’re 15th overall in Total Defense and 37th overall in Total Offense.

Appalachian State is comparable in that sense (21st overall Total Defense, 31st overall Total Offense), but they’ve had a few bumps in the road.  While Coastal has never failed to show up, Appalachian State couldn’t beat a very good Marshall team and just squeaked out a 17-13 win last week against a Georgia State team that Coastal defeated 51-0. I see this Coastal Carolina team continuing their undefeated streak and I don’t think 5.5 is enough.

My Pick:  Coastal Carolina -5.5, this is a 4 out of 5 confidence rating.

#7 Cincinnati (-6) at UCF, o/u 64 – 3:30PM on ESPN

I was dead wrong last week picking ECU to cover against Cincinnati.  I like Cincinnati as a program, I just thought the ECU could hang around while Cincinnati might be getting in their own head about an undefeated season.  Clearly I was wrong and hopefully that won’t come back to bite me this week.

Cincy has been an absolute money-maker this year, going 5-2 ATS.  UCF at 2-5 ATS, is quite literally a money-shredder.  What worries me in this game is that UCF is an offensive powerhouse, averaging over 620 yards per game.  UCF nearly allows as many yards per game on defense (448) that Cincinnati averages on offense (470), yet they score enough to where it doesn’t even matter.  Don’t forget that UCF was also #11 in the country before they went on a bit of a skid following a tough loss to Tulsa (Football).

A perfect season and the CFP looming over Cincinnati’s head still worries me. However, Cincinnati’s defense is for real and they have shown no mercy to lesser opponents all year.  That’s the type of stuff you love to see, especially from a college program.  UCF’s powerhouse offense will be tamed by Cincinnati’s stingy defense and the Bearcats will not slow down no matter the score.

My Pick: Cincinnati -6, this is my week 12 lock.

#14 Oklahoma State at #18 Oklahoma (-7), o/u 59.5 – 7:30 on ABC

The Bedlam Series.  Oklahoma currently leads this series 89-17 all-time and is on a 5-game winning streak.  You might as well throw all of that out of the window this season with how good Oklahoma State has been.  If not for a tough OT loss to Texas, we would probably be talking about them as the likely #4 seed in the CFP.  Which, by the way, I don’t think any Big12 team has a chance at seeing now.

The breakdown of this matchup seems pretty simple:  Oklahoma has the edge offensively, while Oklahoma State has the edge defensively.  I thought I would just look at some common opponents to get a better understanding of what to expect.

Oklahoma State CowboysOklahoma Sooners
Kansas, W 47-7Kansas, W 69-3
Texas, L 34-41 OTTexas, W 53-45 4OT
Kansas State, W 20-18Kansas State, L 35-38
Iowa State, W 24-21Iowa State, L 30-37

Oklahoma has looked like themselves the last few weeks, but look at the opponents:  Kansas (0-7), Texas Tech (3-5) and TCU (3-4).  I am still a believer in the Cowboys even though they lost to Texas and we haven’t seen them in action in two weeks.

My Pick:  Oklahoma State +7, this is a 4 out of 5 confidence rating.

#20 USC (-3) at Utah, o/u 58 – 10:30PM on ESPN

Like I said earlier, this week really isn’t moving the needle for me.  I don’t like USC and Utah hasn’t even played their first game of the season (it’s week 12!).  Why am I even touching this game?  It’s probably the Oregon fan in me needing a PAC12 game on my card.  It’s also probably the Oregon fan in me that is going to take USC -3 in hopes that they can go undefeated to face Oregon in the PAC12 Championship and hopefully give the Ducks a playoff birth.

I wish I had more of an analysis for you here but the main element I’m looking at is simply 2 games to none.  USC has played 2 games and has 2 wins.  Utah has yet to see the field. Also, considering USC has the most returning production in the PAC12 while Utah has the least, laying only 3 feels like a bargain.  I’ll also take the over.  Because, PAC12.

My Picks:  USC -3 and OVER 58.  These are both 3 out of 5 confidence ratings.

Follow me on Twitter for more week 12 picks and let me hear it about what I got wrong. See you all next week!

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CFB Week 10 Picks

I went 2-3 last week after missing the Florida/Mizzou over by HALF of a point. You just hate to see that. You can hear my picks and analysis on last week’s episode of The Vig. Stay tuned for this week’s episode, dropping Friday, which will have some more week 10 picks as well as some NFL picks. Let’s get into my week 10 card:

Kansas at #19 Oklahoma -38, o/u 63 – 3:30PM on ESPN

Oklahoma is 4-2 ATS, Kansas is 0-6 ATS.  Kansas has yet to be competitive this year and Oklahoma is returning home, riding a 3-game winning streak.  I think this game is pretty self-explanatory, in that Kansas will continue to be abused by their fellow Big12 opponents and allow for Oklahoma’s backups to get a solid workout in.  

The Jayhawks are losing on average by 30 points and even lost by 44 to BAYLOR.  You’d have to be insane to take Kansas in this game and I wouldn’t be surprised to see Oklahoma cover this spread in the first half alone.  Lastly, these teams are a combined 9-2-1 when it comes to Over/Unders.  This is a pure numbers game and the numbers tell you to fade Kansas and to take the over.

My Pick:  Oklahoma -38 and over 63, this is a 3 out of 5 confidence rating.

Rutgers +38 at #3 Ohio State, o/u 65 – 7:30PM on BTN

This game is going to make me hate myself.  Why am I taking two 38-point spreads?  More importantly, why am I taking Rutgers!?  They beat a Michigan State team that went on to beat a Michigan team that most people had high hopes for.  They followed that up with an absolutely heartbreaking called back touchdown off of some crazy laterals, which cost them the ATS win.  Gregg Schiano has this team playing well above their talent level and I expect them to come into this game fired up.  Rutgers defense has done great at holding opponents on third-down and their offense is somehow managing to put points on the board.  They’ll only be able to hang with Ohio State for a quarter or two, but at +38, I think that’s all it’ll take. 

My Pick:  Rutgers +38, this is my lock of the week.

Stanford at #12 Oregon -10.5, o/u 51 – 7:30PM on ABC

If I was smart I’d stay away from the PAC12 for a couple of weeks just to get somewhat of an idea on how things will pan out.  However, it’s week 10 and I’m an Oregon fan, so I’m just gonna dive right in.  Oregon finished the season 12-2 last year and Stanford finished 4-8.  Obviously the Ducks are without Justin Herbert and have had quite a few opt outs.  Stanford has suffered a fairly significant loss of personnel as well. 

People still imagine Chip Kelly’s Oregon team of a high powered offense and while they still do have the ability to run the score up, their defense might be the bread and butter of this team.  They were the ninth ranked defense last year and I expect them to kick it up a notch this year.  I don’t see Stanford’s offense doing enough damage and I think Oregon starts the season off strong at home.

My Pick:  Oregon -10.5, this is a 4 out of 5 confidence rating.

#1 Clemson -5.5 at #4 Notre Dame, o/u 51.5 – 7:30PM on NBC

We’ve now seen back-to-back tough showings from Clemson.  They’ve allowed Syracuse to stay in the game for 3 quarters and nearly blew their season last week against Boston College.  Obviously, Trevor Lawrence was out last week.  Unfortunately for them, he’s out this week as well.  I was wondering if Notre Dame may even be favored this week, which they clearly are not.  I expect for all of the money to come in on Notre Dame and I think Vegas wants all of the money to come in on ND.  For that exact reason, I’ll be taking Clemson.  On top of that, Notre Dame just hasn’t impressed me so far this season.  I truly do not know what Notre Dame team we’ll see this weekend and they’ve stumbled against far lesser teams than Clemson.  Clemson will win this game and laying 5.5 isn’t enough to make me feel uncomfortable.

My Pick:  Clemson -5.5, this is a 4 out of 5 confidence rating.

P.S. – look out for Syracuse (+14) to cover, if not beat BC this week.

P.P.S. – check out my Twitter for some live tweeting and other week 10 picks throughout the day.

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Thrive Fantasy TNF Lineup (ATLvsCAR)

If you didn’t know I am a lifelong Carolina Panthers fan, so I’m pumped to have this Thursday Night Thrive Fantasy Lineup going. 

Thrive Fantasy is where Prop Bets meet Daily Fantasy Sports.  Basically, you pick the “over” or “under” in 10 out of 20 possible player props. Then, points are awarded based on correct picks.  In my contest this week, 1st-13th place takes home some cash and there’s a maximum of only 56 participants.

Use promo code “VIG” when signing up and Thrive will match your deposit up to $50 ($20 minimum).

Here’s my lineup for tonight!  #KeepPounding

Thrive Fantasy NFL TNF Rush

Matt RyanUnder 27.5 Completions = 90 PTS
Todd Gurley IIOver 67.5 Rush Yards = 100 PTS
Todd Gurley IIOver 0.5 Rush TDs = 110 PTS
Julio JonesOver 4.5 Receptions = 80 PTS
Calvin RidleyOver 0.5 Receiving TDs = 115 PTS
Teddy BridgewaterUnder 2.5 Pass TDs + INTs = 85 PTS
Mike DavisOver 0.5 Rush TDs + Rec. TDs = 100 PTS
Robby AndersonOver 71.5 Receiving Yards = 85 PTS
Robby AndersonOver 6.5 Receptions = 110 PTS
Joey SlyeOver 7.5 Points = 100 PTS

Yes, I know. EIGHT overs. Life is too short to take the under and of course I’m going to root for the Panthers to have themselves a night.

Check out my Twitter and the Podcast for mine and J‘s picks and send me your lineups!

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CFB Week 9 Picks

Welcome to the Winners’ Circle ladies and gentlemen.  Going 3-2 last week, with how my year has gone thus far, feels like I had the weekend of a lifetime.  I cannot wait to be brought back down to earth with this horrible Week 9 slate.  Given how many early games I have on my card, be sure to check out my Twitter for more picks throughout the day on Saturday.

Next week, I’ll have my overall records per confidence rating.  What’s the point in even having them if I can’t provide data on each one?  So stay tuned.  Let’s get into my Week 9 Card:

East Carolina at Tulsa -17, o/u 61 – 9PM on ESPN2

Friday night lights, meet Tulsa Football.  I’m clearly a big Tulsa guy and at 3-0 ATS this season I’d be a fool to turn away now.  I’m more of a “ride streak” guy than I am a “due to lose” guy.  Last week I mentioned how well-balanced this Tulsa team is and they showed exactly that in their contest at USF.  The Golden Hurricane’s running attack scored four touchdowns while their defense held USF to 2 for 15 on third downs.  

As far as common opponents, East Carolina lost their first contest of the season 51-28 to UCF, a team that Tulsa beat 34-26 in early October.  East Carolina is probably the worst defense in this conference and are ranked outside of the top 100 for schedule difficulty while Tulsa is top 35.  Clearly, Tulsa is the superior team here and I expect them to win by three touchdowns.

My Pick:  Tulsa -17, this is a 4 out of 5 confidence rating.

Boston College +31 at #1 Clemson, o/u 61 – NOON on ABC

Does Clemson run it up on Boston College after last week’s performance against Syracuse?  Will Clemson be looking ahead to next week’s showdown at #4 Notre Dame?  Both are very possible, with very different outcomes on the game.  Boston College is a respectable 4-2, holding teams to only 25 ppg.  Phil Jurkovec and BC’s passing attack have had themselves a great year which I expect to keep them in this game.  When I say keep them in this game I mean they’ll probably lose by 28 points.  Who cares, that’s a win.

My Pick:  Boston College +31, this is a 3 out of 5 confidence rating.

Memphis at #7 Cincinnati -7, o/u 55.5 – NOON on ESPN

UCF, SMU and Memphis all seem like the same team to me, in that there isn’t much defense and none of those teams play smash mouth football.  Cincinnati has only allowed 12.5 ppg in 4 game this season and score 37 ppg.  It’s shocking to me that the #7 team in the country is only a 7 point favorite here, especially when they play such a physical style of football against a team that shouldn’t be able to handle it.  I’d expect this week to look like Cincinnati’s first four games.  Holding Memphis to 20 or less while putting up over 30.

My Pick:  Cincinnati -7, this is my week 9 lock.

Michigan State at #13 Michigan -24.5, o/u 52.5 – NOON on FOX

Rutgers got its first conference win since 2017 last week against MSU.  That’s how bad Michigan State is.  Now, to defend MSU’s defense, the offense did turn the ball over 7 times, so holding Rutgers to only 38 is almost impressive. Michigan smoked Minnesota last week, but overall it was a weirdly sloppy game.  I was still impressed by their performance but the overall sloppiness left a bit to be desired, especially if they want to give Ohio State a run for its money.  With that being said, I expect Michigan’s defense to have an even more dominant game this week than they had at Minnesota (5 sacks, 8 TFL).  Joe Milton was also impressive for someone I wasn’t very high on.  I know I just tried to compliment MSU’s defensive performance last week, but at the end of the day they gave up 38 points to RUTGERS.  Michigan should have their way with this MSU team for the third straight year (65-17 combined in their last two matchups).

My Pick:  Michigan -24.5 this is a 3 out of 5 confidence rating.

Missouri at #10 Florida -13.5, o/u 61.5 – 7:30 on SECN

I’ll keep this one short and sweet.  The Florida Gators’ offense is spectacular, their defense is the furthest thing from spectacular.  Their games this year have totaled: 86, 62 and 79.  We may very well see over 1,000 yards of offense from this game as both Missouri and Florida average over 400 yards per game.  Until shown otherwise, I’m going to assume Florida overs to be automatic.

My Pick:  OVER 61.5, this is a 4 out of 5 confidence rating.

New Podcast episodes every Friday for CFB, NFL and more gambling picks! Week 9 CFB and Week 8 NFL this week.

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CFB Week 8 Picks

Sorry for the late post! Usually like to get these out Wednesday night or Thursday around noon at the latest. I went 2-2 last week, which for me felt like a positive week compared to how the past few weeks had been going. Let’s get into my week 8 picks:

Tulsa -10 at USF, o/u 51 – Friday, 7:30PM on ESPN

Friday night lights! Tulsa is playing just their third game of the season this weekend after having their contest last week against Cincinnati cancelled due to coronavirus issues.  The Golden Hurricanes are 2-0 ATS this season and 7-0 ATS in their last 7 road games.  So far this year we’ve seen a very well-balanced and competitive Tulsa team; they very well could have beat Oklahoma State week 1 and they knocked UCF out of the top-25 in their second game of the season.  I expect this team to be fired up for this week after preparing for the Cincinnati game and then having it cancelled on them.

USF is on a 4 game skid, with their only win of the season coming in their week 1 matchup against Citadel.  USF, like Tulsa, has faced two top-25 ranked programs.  However, USF has lost those two contests by a combined score of 80-7 (52-0 v. ND, 28-7 v. Cincy).  With USF losing on average by 14 and Tulsa’s offense finding their groove in the UCF contest, I don’t mind laying 10.

My Pick:  Tulsa -10, this is a 4 out of 5 confidence rating.

Nebraska at #5 Ohio State -26.5, o/u 67.5 – NOON on FOX

Finally, the B1G is back, although it’s already week 8.  We haven’t even seen Ohio State play this year, but it’s pretty obvious that this season comes down to Clemson, Alabama and the Buckeyes.  With only 8 regular season games this year, I expect Ohio State to have the pedal to the floor the entire way.  They’re not going to have to “wow” us every week to earn their spot (clearly, they’re #5 in the country without playing a game), but I would imagine they’ll want everyone to know just how much of a force they really are.

Ohio State has defeated Nebraska by 40+ points in 3 out of their last 4 matchups.  Nebraska is hoping their offense looks better this year with some more experience under their belt after a disappointing 2019.  However, I still expect the Buckeye D-Line to have their way against Nebraska and Adrian Martinez.  I’d lay a million points here.

My Pick:  Ohio State -26.5, this is a 4 out of 5 confidence rating.

Georgia Southern at #25 Coastal Carolina -5.5, o/u 51.5 – NOON on ESPNU

The line on this game has bounced around between 7 and 6 all week and so has my pick on this game.  With the line now sitting at -5.5 I jumped on Coastal Carolina.  Georgia Southern has a great defense ranked 32nd against the pass and 27th against the run.  I think their defense paired with their run first offense is going to make this an incredibly tough game for Coastal Carolina; every possession will matter.  The Chanticleers have a tough task this week especially now being ranked for the first time in school history and trying to keep their perfect record alive.  Their 11th ranked offense should be able to handle Georgia Southern’s defense, but with how shaky college kicking has been, -5.5 feels drastically safer than -6.

My Pick:  Coastal Carolina -5.5, this is a 3 out of 5 confidence rating.

Hawaii at Fresno State o/u 66 – 7:30PM

Death, taxes and Hawaii overs.  The fact that Hawaii overs were only 9-6 last season blows my mind; I swear I bet them every week and lost maybe once. I remember taking alternate lines on however high I could go because it was pretty much free money.  

Last season, Hawaii lost to Fresno State 41-38 and we have a rematch this weekend for week 8.  I literally know nothing about either of these teams and that’s how I want it to remain.  I see Hawaii – I take the over.  It’s that simple.

My Pick:  OVER 66, this is my lock of the week.

Texas State at #12 BYU -29, o/u 60.5 – 10:15PM on ESPN

I might just be a little salty here, but last time I saw a big spread from BYU, I took it and I lost.  BYU is coming off of a 43-26 victory over Houston, but that game was much closer than the score makes you believe.  I might be wrong, but in my opinion BYU just hasn’t looked the same since their route of La Tech.  They’re still one of my favorite teams in the country right now, but I don’t think they’re the team they looked like they were in the first 3 weeks.

BYU will absolutely win this game and most likely in blowout fashion, but over four touchdowns is too much for me to lay.  Texas State stinks but them putting up 48 against a UTSA team that BYU failed to even put up 30 on gives me some hope they can stay within 30 here.

My Pick: Texas State +29, this is a 3 out of 5 confidence rating.

Follow me on Twitter for more week 8 picks and subscribe to the Podcast for more gambling talk!

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CFB Week 7 Picks

After a season’s worst 1-4 last week, I move to 9-16-1 overall. So congratulations to all of you who are 16-9-1! Like I said before, I’m still losing money here so I’m trying my best to get back in the black. Locks are 2-3 this season and will be 3-3 next week. Let’s get into my Week 7 card:

#14 BYU -5 at Houston, o/u 62.5 – Friday, 9:30PM on ESPN

Friday night lights! I’m still big on BYU, even though they failed to put up as many points as they laid last weekend.  It was unrealistic to expect them to keep blowing teams out of the water and last week’s failure to cover has brought me back to earth.  Now, Houston has only played one game.  They turned the ball over 5 times to Tulane, had zero takeaways and still won by 18.  I think that game was more telling about Tulane than it was against Houston, but it was impressive nonetheless.  With Houston only having one matchup under their belt, it’s really hard to try to evaluate them properly.  One thing I do know, is that either team could win this game and both teams have incredibly talented offenses.  I would expect both the Cougars and the…Cougars…to put up 30+ points.  The over is the play.

My Pick:  OVER 62.5, this a 4 out of 5 confidence rating.

#17 SMU -6.5 at Tulane, o/u 64.5 – Friday, 6PM on ESPN

I didn’t list this game as my first pick because this is a live-bet-only game.  Tulane is a team that can only play one half.  Which half will it be this weekend? I do not know.  But first, let’s look deeper into this:

Week 1:  Tulane puts up 6 points in the first-half, 21 points in the second-half.

Week 2:  Tulane puts up 24 points in the first-half, 0 points in the second-half.

Week 3:  Tulane puts up 31 points in the first-half, 35 points in the second-half.

Week 4:  Tulane puts up 24 points in the first-half, 7 points in the second-half.

So, this week against SMU, if Tulane can put up 20+ points in the first half:  HAMMER SMU second-half, and I mean HAMMER – put your father’s 401k on it.  If Tulane flops in the first-half, sprinkle a little bit on them to win the second-half. Overall, Tulane is not a good football team, hence the “sprinkle” on them to win the second-half. If Tulane puts up 14-20 points in the first half, we may be in no-mans-land and you’ll have to use your best judgement. I’ll probably stay away if that’s the case.

My Pick:  The opposite of what Tulane shows us first-half.

UCF -3 at Memphis, o/u 73.5 – 3:30PM on ABC

UCF has won their last 13 matchups against Memphis, of which the margin of victory has been less than 3 only twice. They’re coming off of a terrible loss against Tulsa where they blew an 18-point lead and snapped a 21-game winning streak at home.  That loss resulted in them going from #11 in the country to unranked.   Memphis is 1-1 in a very strange season.  They beat Arkansas State in the beginning of September, then had a month off, then lost to SMU which led to another week off and now they face the Golden Knights.  Although they have 6th year senior (6th year!?!?) Brady White under center, I think that the inconsistency of their season combined with an angry UCF team will be too much to handle. UCF’s offense will put up points and as long as their defense can put it together for a few drives they should win by at least a touchdown.

My Pick:  UCF -3, this is my lock of the week.

#3 Georgia at #2 Alabama -6, o/u 56.5 – 8PM on CBS

Alabama is 3-5 SU and 1-7 ATS in their last 8 games with a sub 7-point spread.  That includes bowl games, so maybe a more relevant stat would be that they are 3-3 ATS in their last 6 home games when favored by 7 or fewer.  Georgia has really struggled to get going early in games this season, especially week 1 against Arkansas; their up-tempo approach leaves them vulnerable to going down big early against the Crimson Tide.  Alabama’s defense hasn’t looked quite like we’re used to; however, I think that there’s been an overreaction to what we saw them give up to Ole Miss last weekend.  I’m taking Alabama and the under.  56.5 for Georgia/Alabama just feels huge.  This is a pride game, they want to beat each other up, the SEC this year has really looked more like the Big 12 as far as game totals look and I expect these SEC defenses to shine in this game. I just saw that Saban has tested positive for the coronavirus, so this game probably won’t even happen. Time to add one more play to the card!

My Pick:  Alabama -6 and UNDER 56.5, both are a 3 out of 5 confidence rating.

The Self-Quarantine Parlay

Games starting at noon and ending around 11PM. The perfect parlay to sit on the couch and watch Week 7 CFB all day. (Only playing if Bama gets cancelled):

Temple, UAB, UCF, UNC +155

South Florida at Temple (NOON), Western Kentucky at UAB (1:30), UCF at Memphis (3:30), UNC at FSU (7:30)

Check out my Twitter for more week 7 picks and new episodes of the Podcast every Friday!

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CFB Week 6 Picks

My “make or break” week last week was much more “break” than it was “make”. I went 3-5-1 which puts me at 8-12-1 on the 2020 CFB season heading into Week 6. This is like a 12 car pileup – it’s so bad that you can’t look away. As always, fade at your own risk. Here are my week 6 picks:

Louisville -4.5 at Georgia Tech, o/u 64 – 7PM, Friday on ESPN

Georgia Tech is a team that just squeaked by FSU in their first game of the year and followed that up with back-to-back losses including a 37-20 loss against Syracuse.  Giving up 37 points to Syracuse is a bad look for anybody.  The Yellow Jackets have a freshman QB in Jeff Simms who has thrown for 2 TDs and 6 INTs in their last two games.  On the bright side, he leads the team in rushing yards and their running back duo of Gibbs and Griffin have been running the ball great as well.  

Louisville is also coming off of back-to-back losses but after having a bye last week, I think they show up with a little more fire under their belly than Georgia Tech.  Malik Cunningham is a ton of fun to watch and can turn any average play into a highlight reel.  With the Yellow Jackets allowing over 440 yards of offense, I think that Cunningham and the rest of Louisville’s offense will run away with this one.  Only having to lay 4.5 here almost feels wrong.

My Pick:  Louisville -4.5, this is a 3 out of 5 confidence rating.

Duke -2 at Syracuse, o/u 51.5 – 12:30PM on ESPN3

The Blue Devils are off to their worst start in 14 years going 0-4 so far this season.  Syracuse is coming off of a bye week and had their first win of the season against Georgia Tech the week prior.  All-in-all this will be a terribly ugly game and the only reason I’m even touching it is because I don’t think Duke should ever be the favorite, no matter who they play.  Syracuse’s offensive line seemed to be somewhat capable against Georgia Tech which allowed Tommy DeVito to have a decent game (194 yards, 2 TDs, 1 INT).  Duke’s pass rush is nothing special so hopefully Syracuse can keep DeVito protected again to help Syracuse win this thing outright. The one (yes, only one) good stat-line I could find between these two bottom-tier teams is that Syracuse has come up with 10 takeaways in 3 games; that could be the difference maker this week for them.  Syracuse ML is only +105, so I’m not going to risk a 1 point loss for the potential to win an extra 0.05 units.

My Pick:  Syracuse +2, this is a 3 out of 5 confidence rating.

UTSA at #15 BYU -34.5, o/u 63 – 3:30PM on ESPN2

There is no team in the nation right now that has been playing better than the BYU Cougars.  This spread is huge, but BYU has won each of their first three games by at least 31 points.  They’re second in the nation in scoring and ypg.  Their defense is ranked fourth allowing only 8 ppg and has given up a nation’s best 214.3 total yards per game.  BYU can and has done it all this season; you could fill a Book [of Mormon] with what they’re doing right and it’s only been three games.

UTSA is having a great season as well.  After becoming the first 3-0 team in the nation, they fell to UAB last week 21-13.  They struggled to stop the run against UAB and that could spell major trouble for them in week 6.  However, they’re 3rd in the nation in takeaways and we all know how quickly turnovers can change a game. They’ll need their defensive line, which has been dominant, to pressure Zach Wilson to hopefully force a few turnovers.  But who am I kidding?  That will not happen.  BYU is an absolute force and will continue to climb the rankings.  34.5 is a ton of points but you have to lay them here.  I can live with BYU not covering; I can’t live backing a Conference USA team versus the hottest team in the nation.

My Pick:  BYU -34.5, this is a 4 out of 5 confidence rating.

#7 Miami at #1 Clemson -14, o/u 62.5 – 7:30PM on ABC

Easily the game of the week and potentially the game of the year with the Miami Hurricane’s clashing with the Clemson Tigers on Saturday night.  The only thing that could spoil all of the fun is some weather from Tropical Storm Delta.  Rain always spoils the fun but more importantly it spoils the over.  Pair the rain with a matchup between two top 20 defenses and we have entered Under City.  It hurts me to say that since betting the under sucks and we have two of the Heisman favorites facing off, but I can’t bet with my heart here. 

D’Eriq King and Trevor Lawrence combine for 14 TDs and 0 INTs.  Cam’Ron Harris is averaging over 5 yards per carry for Miami while Travis Etienne is averaging over 6 yards per carry for Clemson.  Just an incredible matchup no matter what way you look at it. Clemson is the better team here, but winning by more than two touchdowns against a Miami team that looks like a legit contender seems like a high order.  I’ll watch the line or buy half a point to make the spread +14.5 here for Miami.

My Pick:  Miami +14.5 and UNDER 62.5, the under is my lock of the week.

Check out my Twitter for more week 6 picks throughout the day and check out the Podcast for more picks!

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CFB Week 5 Picks

2-2 last week makes me 5-7 on the year.  Obviously, I’d prefer to be 7-5 but you know who is 7-5? YOU!  Because you are now fading me every single week.  The only thing worse than going 5-7 would be going 6-6.  I’m giving you what not to take; which, in a roundabout way, means I’m giving you what to take.  Now, I’m still losing money here.  I’m not about to spend the next 5 weeks trying to get back to even so we have a do or die Week 5.  Nine plays and I can feel a heater coming on.

I’m going to give my usual analysis of my favorite games for week 5 and then just some quick picks at the end for the record books.  Fade at your own risk:

Louisiana Tech at #22 BYU -24, o/u 59 – Friday, 9PM on ESPN2

CFB Week 5 - La Tech at BYU

Friday Night Lights.  This is a matchup between a pair of 2-0 programs.  BYU is off to a historic start beating Navy 55-3 and following that up with a 48-7 victory over Troy.  La Tech smoked an FCS team (Boooo!) and squeezed out a 1-point victory against Southern Mississippi.  Stay with me here.  Southern Mississippi lost to Tulane 66-24, who lost to Navy 27-24, who lost to BYU 55-3!  So, if Team A > Team B > Team C > Team D ≈ Team E, is Team A > or < Team E?

Sorry, that’s completely pointless since BYU is already favored by 24 points; I’m just a sucker for a good old transitive property scenario.  On a serious note, BYU looks incredible.  Quarterback Zach Wilson is completing nearly 80% of his passes and the defense is allowing only 5 ppg.  Louisiana Tech has shown that they can put up points, but against an FCS team in Houston Baptist, that doesn’t hold much weight.  Troy also put up 47 the week prior to being held to only 7 by BYU.  I’ll ride with the Mormon’s till I die, but much like them, I can’t only have 1.

My Picks:  BYU -24 and OVER 59, this is a 5 out of 5 confidence rating.

UTSA at UAB -20.5, o/u 54.5 – 12:30

I really like UAB every year and Conference USA is one of those weird, fun gambling conferences.  The UTSA Roadrunners are coming off a 37-35 win over Middle Tennessee to become the first 3-0 team in the country, which is great for them.  However, they were a two-point conversion away from going to overtime with an 0-2 Middle Tennessee team that scored 14 points total in their first two games.  UTSA’s offense is solid but their defense is lacking.  At the end of the day, they are 3-0 and they’re 6-3 ATS in their last 9 (1-2 this season).  

UAB is 2-1 including a tough loss to a good Miami team.  This will be their first in-conference game and they’re undefeated at home since the programs resurgence in 2017 – that’s 19 straight wins at home.  They’re also 8-0 ATS in their last 8 games in October.  This line did open at 18.5 and most of the money is coming in on UTSA, I’m not a big “fade the public” guy, but I feel better being in this position.  With that being said, I won’t touch -21 or higher.

My Pick:  UAB -20.5 this is a 2 out of 5 confidence rating.

#17 Oklahoma State -21.5 at Kansas, o/u 54 – 3:30PM on ESPN

I’m 2-0 in Oklahoma State games and Kansas STINKS.  I was unsure last week with Spencer Sanders being out, but Oklahoma State’s offense seemed to click pretty well with Shane Illingworth under center and the run game looked how everyone expected it to look this season.  They did only score 27 last week so we’re not seeing the offensive firepower that they’re known for and a 3-score spread feels daunting.  However, Kansas’ defense is giving up over 40 ppg in this young season and I think this could be OSU’s breakout game.  Regardless, the deciding factor in this game will be Oklahoma State’s defense.  Everyone overlooks it because they want to see the high powered offense, but the defense quietly racked up 5 sacks last week and is only allowing 10 ppg. Oklahoma State will put up more than 40 points in this game.

My Pick:  Oklahoma State -21.5, this is a 4 out of 5 confidence rating.

Tulsa at #11 UCF -21.5, o/u 72 – 7:30PM on ESPN2

A golden matchup.  Last season, UCF went 9-3.  In those 3 losses, they lost by a combined 7 points.  If the wind blew a different direction last year, we could very easily be talking about UCF going for their 4th consecutive undefeated regular season right now.  With how strange of a year this is, the self-declared National Champions of UCF have as good a shot as ever to make a run for the CFP.  Dillon Gabriel is coming off back-to-back 400 yard, 4 TD games and UCF has put up a combined 100 points in their first 2 games of the season.

Tulsa football is just that:  Tulsa Football. They are 5-2 ATS in their last 7 and 6-2 in their last 8 against the Golden Knights.  Unfortunately for the Golden Hurricanes, they have the honor of playing the #11 ranked team in the country in back-to-back games.  They’re coming off of a 16-7 loss to then #11 Oklahoma State where their defense looked stout, but their offense left a lot to be desired.  On the bright side, they did defeat the Golden Knights last season 34-31 and have had two weeks to prepare due to last week’s postponement.  Can they defeat UCF again this week?  I don’t think so.  Can they cover 3 scores? Probably.  What I’m really looking at here is a powerful UCF offense versus a decent Tulsa offense; who I believe, played an underrated Oklahoma State defense in their first contest.  I expect a high-scoring affair.

My Pick:  Tulsa +21.5 and OVER 72.  The over is my lock of the week.

Final Week 5 Picks:

  • Baylor -3 at West Virginia
  • #25 Memphis at SMU, OVER 74
  • #18 Oklahoma -7 at Iowa State

Follow me on Twitter for added picks and check out the Podcast every week!

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MLB Playoffs Betting Picks (9/29)

With the MLB playoffs finally starting up today, here are my two picks of the day.

Yankees ML (-115) over the Indians:

The question mark remains with this Yankees is which team will show up? The most inconsistent team in baseball has the potential to be a World Series Contender on their best day, but on their worst day struggle brutally with RISP and pitching mistakes. I predict today will be one of those games where the Yankees are able to break out of their slump and win over a very good Bieber and Indians roster.

LOCK : Rays -1.5 (+105) over Blue Jays

I feel as if Vegas is not factoring in enough how good Blake Snell has been this year posting a 3.24 ERA with 63 strikeouts. Whereas Toronto is starting Matt Shoemaker, who has been brutally bad for Toronto this year with a 4.71 ERA and not even having a W under his belt. Rays by a billion, hammer the spread and thank me later.