We went a disappointing 4-5 last week with the picks, running our season record to 23-19. That’s what I get for trusting Greg Schiano. (The OutKick NFL six pack also went 2-4, running our season record there to 11-7. I tweet out my NFL picks every Sunday morning.)
But I’m not going to lie, I absolutely love the board this week.
And we’re going to be on fire, 13-0 style.
I’m headed to Clemson this weekend for the N.C. State game. The weather will be iffy, but I’m looking forward to my first trip there. After Clemson we will be at Texas A&M-Alabama in Tuscaloosa on October 8th and then we will be back in Knoxville for Alabama-Tennessee on October 15th. The rest of our Big Noon college football schedule will get fleshed out as we see who keeps winning.
Okay, let’s roll.
Washington -2.5 at UCLA
We’ve got Friday night Pac 12 action to launch us right into the weekend.
I have Washington in my top ten this season and they have been one of the most impressive teams in college football in the first third of the season. Meanwhile UCLA, while the Bruins are still undefeated, has been thoroughly unimpressive.
Toss in the fact that UCLA seems unable to get any fans to actually come to their games and this feels like it may be a default Washington Husky home game.
Which means the Huskies win by seven or more.
Michigan at Iowa +10.5 and the under 42.5
My inability to get Iowa right this season has singlehandedly added four losses to our gambling totals. I was wrong on the Iowa State and Rutgers lines and the totals in both those games.
Now we’ve got undefeated Michigan heading on the road and I can’t help but think this feels like one of those inexplicable Kirk Ferentz wins and Jim Harbaugh losses. How many times have we seen this over the years? A top Big Ten team rolls into Iowa City and gets whipped?
Plus, be honest, aren’t we way past due for an inexplicable Harbaugh loss, maybe in excruciating fashion, to drive Michigan fans bonkers?
I think so.
The Wolverines are overvalued right now given their weak opening schedule and Maryland showed us some vulnerabilities last weekend.
We know Iowa is going to play a low scoring, defensive game and this also feels like the game where the Hawkeyes get like four turnovers and find a way to win.
But we don’t need to win to cover a double digit line. Hop on Iowa and the under and enjoy this game which will end 20-17, meaning we get a double win.
Purdue at Minnesota -11.5
P.J. Fleck and his team are rowing harder than Gendry in Game of Thrones right now.
Minnesota is 4-0 and only has one top 25 team left on their schedule, Penn State. We’re talking about the Golden Gophers having a very real chance at 11-1 this season.
What’s more, Minnesota isn’t just winning, they’re dominating, winning every game by at least 27 points.
So what happens against Purdue?
Minnesota wins by twenty.
Keep rowing, baby.
Kentucky +6.5 at Ole Miss, and the under 54.5
This is a play based on a couple of things — neither team is that great offensively and Kentucky, with the return of Chris Rodriguez, is able to run the ball much better than they have so far this season. The result? Way less plays than anticipated and a Kentucky cover in a low scoring game.
Frankly, we still don’t know very much about either of these teams. Yes, they’re a combined 8-0, but six of those wins have come against non-power five conference competition in home games. The two power five wins are Georgia Tech, who is absolutely awful, and Florida, who is not up to the usual Gator standard.
As a result, I think both teams are probably a bit overvalued.
This line has surged by three points this week as money has poured in on Ole Miss and I now think all the value is on Kentucky.
So give me the Wildcats and the under and let’s get a nice double win out of the early kickoff in the Grove.
Oklahoma State +2.5 at Baylor
This is a bet on Mike Gundy and the Cowboys, who I think are the best team in the Big 12 this season.
The Cowboys have had two weeks to get ready for this game while Baylor is coming off a nice road win at Iowa State. The Bears feel overvalued to me as they’ve already lost to a BYU team that doesn’t appear likely to set the world on fire.
So what happens here?
The Cowboys win outright in a 15th year “I’m a man, I’m forty,” anniversary special.
But you get them plus a couple of points in a nice value play.
Alabama at Arkansas +17.5
The Razorbacks would be 4-0 if they’d made a kick they should have made.
Instead, the Hogs oinked off the upright and are now a monster home underdog against Alabama.
The Crimson Tide, outside of a bad game at Texas, has been totally and completely dominant against all other competition. So dominant in fact that the number continues to grow on the road in Fayetteville, with the Tide a 17.5 point favorite.
This just feels like an absolutely insane line to me.
The Tide may well be excellent, but to make them more than a three score favorite on the road in a stadium that you know is going to be completely raucous and out of control? Coming off, no less, a devastating loss that likely has the entire Arkansas team wanting to get back on the field immediately? And against a veteran quarterback and a defense that has shown the ability to get after the quarterback?
I think the Hogs keep this one close throughout and cover this big number with ease. The Tide wins, but only by ten, 38-28.
Wake Forest at Florida State, the over 64.5
All Wake Forest does is hit the over.
Just trust me on this one, we’ve got another shootout coming down in Tallahassee.
Florida State is undefeated with two solid wins outside of their home stadium, LSU in New Orleans and at Louisville. Remember when everyone wanted Mike Norvell fired? Well, over the next three weeks we will find out how good the Seminoles are with games against Wake, at N.C. State and Clemson.
We’ll start to get an early read this week against Wake.
But rather than worry about the number, let’s just watch the points rain down.
The over’s the play.
Texas A&M at Mississippi State -3.5
The Aggies benefited from a missed Arkansas kick and are now 3-1 headed to Starkville in between games against Arkansas and Alabama.
This is the ultimate trap game situation and I absolutely love the Bulldogs to come out and win by a touchdown or more on Saturday. Especially because the quarterback situation is a true mismatch, Will Rogers goes off on Saturday.
Mississippi State has played one bad half, really, all year. Yes, they fell apart a bit in Death Valley at night, but I still think the Bulldogs are a top 25 team and they’ll show it on Saturday with a big win over the Aggies.
Grab the cowbells and shake them loudly, we’re covering.
LSU at Auburn, the under 45.5
Last week I told you Auburn didn’t deserve to be favored by 7.5 points over any SEC team, even Mizzou, and we nailed that forecast. Mizzou, in fact, should have won that game.
Ultimately this is a bet that Auburn’s offense is just too bad to have much success against this LSU defense. But LSU is approaching a double digit road favorite and that seems really steep to me.
So I’m going to rely on Auburn to drag this game down into the mud.
Take the under and enjoy the win.
N.C. State +6.5 at Clemson
I know Vegas loves the Tigers, but it looks like it’s going to be really messy weather in Clemson on Saturday. And I feel like N.C. State perpetually gets no respect from either the media or the oddsmakers.
This is an opportunity for the Wolfpack to prove they belong on the national stage and if we’ve learned anything about N.C. State over the years it’s that they always step up when they have big games and all the nation is watching and, I’m sorry for even making this joke Wolfpack fans.
But this game is different!
Give me the Wolfpack to cover this number and have a chance to steal it late.
Georgia -28 at Missouri
Sometimes gambling is simple, Mizzou is the worst team in the SEC and Georgia is the best team in the SEC.
Worse than that, Georgia is coming off a mediocre performance against Kent State which probably got Kirby fired up in practice.
Meaning there is only one prediction for the Tigers: pain.
Stetson Bennett goes off and Georgia wins 56-14.
There you have it, boys and girls, we’re going 13-0.
See you in Clemson.