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
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