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Last week we went 5-6 on these picks with three absolute brutal endings that caused us to push and lose two games. (Those brutal endings were the late Florida touchdown that turned the blood bank guarantee into a push for many of you unless you got the 50.5 when the picks went up on Wednesday here or on FoxBet thanks to the blood bank bet boost. But at least that was a push. We also lost the Alabama game on a bogus roughing the passer call on 4th down that extended the game to allow a touchdown pass with 11 seconds remaining and lost the under in the USC-BYU game because of overtime, thanks to USC’s kicker banging through a 52 yard field goal to put us into overtime.
I mean, really, just brutal triple end of game situations there.
Combining that with two weeks ago having the UCF-FAU game called with 4:30 left when we were set to hit the over and Tennessee choking away the push against BYU and that’s five straight coin flips that have gone us against us.)
But it’s a long season and I’m confident these breaks will even out.
Starting this week when we go 11-0!
In the meantime we are now 27-21 on the year after the picks went 6-7 last week. (5-6 on here and 1-1 in the William Hill contest on additional picks I made on Oklahoma State for a win and Mississippi State for a loss).
That’s a 56% win percentage on the year. (The blood bank guarantee, by the way, remains undefeated, either 4-0 if you got the 50.5 or 3-0 if you got the push.)
Not bad for a quarter of the way through the season, but we need to get these numbers up.
So here we go into the great gambling frontier with 11 winners this weekend.
This will be the third year we’ve had the picks up early on the Outkick VIP message board. If you love to ride with the Outkick picks — or hate me and want to fade everything that I do — I post my picks Monday afternoon on the VIP message board so you can get the earliest numbers possible. Then I’ll post the picks for free here on Wednesday afternoon. This year’s new VIP’s will receive an autographed copy of my new book, Republicans Buy Sneakers Too, access to our VIP events across the nation, a VIP message board, a VIP phone line for my radio show, and other cool experiences, potentially involving the TV show(s), which will be announced on the VIP message board. So make sure you sign up for Outkick VIP today.
Here we go with 11-0!
UCF -12 at Pitt, now UCF -12
UCF has been absolutely mauling everyone so far this year and I don’t see any reason why that’s going to stop with Pittsburgh this weekend. Especially since Pitt can’t score and Pat Narduzzi is still trying, and failing, to explain why he attempted a field goal down seven with under five minutes to play at Penn State last week.
These two teams played last year and UCF crushed Pitt 45-14 in a game that was never really close.
I think we get more of the same this week, UCF rolls by two touchdowns or more.
Michigan State-Northwestern the under 39, now 39
Put simply, Michigan State couldn’t score in a whorehouse right now. And Northwestern couldn’t either.
Not there’s anything wrong with that, but I don’t think they could score against each other either.
Fortunately both defenses are stout — Michigan State has given up 34 points in three games so far and Northwestern has only given up 31 in two games.
Basic math would suggest that means this game is going to turn out something like a 17-14 final.
And even that might be too high.
Easy solution: take the under and you don’t even have to watch this plodding awfulness or worry about how wins and you’ll still make money.
Michigan at Wisconsin -3, now Wisconsin -3.5
Jim Harbaugh’s Michigan Wolverines teams are 1-5 on the road against top 25 teams, 2-4 against the spread.
Meanwhile Wisconsin has yet to give up a point on the season.
In order to take Michigan here you’d have to convince me that quarterback Shea Patterson is suddenly going to have a light bulb moment in this offense. But we’ve been waiting on that for a couple of years now and it still hasn’t happened.
And I don’t think it happens this week either.
Meaning the Badgers are the play to win and cover at home.
Vols +14 at Florida and the under 51, now Vols +14 and the under 49
This is my favorite game of the week because I feel like I understand both teams pretty well.
And the truth is this: neither team is very good. Especially not on the offensive side of the ball.
I absolutely love the under here — tap the veins, kids, it’s my blood bank guarantee — but I also really like Tennessee to cover the 14, especially if you can get this number ticking up above 14 as it was earlier in the week.
It’s going to be a defensive struggle and this point spread is way too high because this game is going to essentially boil down to this question: which quarterback makes plays? If Tennessee wins this game will be a mirror image for what happened at Auburn last year — Jarrett Guarantano will throw up a couple of jump balls to his wide receivers and the Vols will make big plays there and win the game. If Guarantano plays poorly, Tennessee will lose by double digits.
On the flip side, what can Kyle Trask do when a defense has an entire week to prepare for him? He’s not the mobile threat that Feliepe Franks was and he doesn’t have as big of an arm either, but he’s probably more consistent than Franks was.
That means the Gator ceiling is lower, but the floor probably is higher too.
So I see this as a game where both teams struggle to score and there’s a lot of punts.
That’s made even more the case when you consider this will be a noon kickoff game and it’s likely the crowd — particularly the students — aren’t there early firing up the home team.
Ultimately I love the under here as my blood bank guarantee and also like Tennessee to cover the two touchdowns.
LSU -23 at Vanderbilt, now LSU -23.5
My prediction? A bloodbath if LSU shows up ready to play, which I think they will.
Last week LSU had a hangover after their win against Texas in Austin. This week I think LSU will do what Georgia did at Vanderbilt to begin the season — take over the football stadium and make it a default LSU home game.
Nashville has become such a fun city that visiting fans pour into the city when their teams play here. That’s not good for Vanderbilt, which has struggled to support Derek Mason’s team even when they’ve won.
In front of a home crowd this game won’t be remotely close — LSU rolls and Joe Burrow continues to pad his Heisman stats.
The Bayou Bengals by thirty.
Kentucky +7.5 at Mississippi State, now Kentucky +6
I don’t think either of these teams are very good, but I was stunned to see Mississippi State open over a touchdown favorite here.
Yes, Mississippi State has won eight of the last ten in this series, but I think Kentucky is pretty decent on the offensive and defensive lines and keeps this game close throughout.
My one worry, honestly, is that Kentucky might suffer a hangover after they gave away a game against Florida, but I just don’t see that happening here because Mississippi State is coming off their own difficult loss at home to Kansas State and I simply don’t see there being much difference between these two teams.
I’m not necessarily saying Kentucky wins outright, but I think it’s a three point game.
Take the points and enjoy your win.
South Carolina at Mizzou -8.5 and the over 63.5, now Mizzou -9.5 and 63.5
Mizzou lost in week one at Wyoming and many wrote them off.
But then the Tigers bounced back and trounced West Virginia 38-7 and Southeast Missouri 50-0. (That West Virginia win, in particular, looks pretty good after what the Mountaineers did to N.C. State).
Last year South Carolina stole a late win over the Tigers after a deluge of a rainfall zapped early momentum and I think this year the tables are turned with Mizzou taking control of this one early and covering with ease.
I do think, however, that lots of points will be scored here.
Call it Mizzou 42 South Carolina 24.
Boom, you get the cover and the over.
Oregon -10 at Stanford, now Oregon -10.5
In the past two weeks Stanford has lost 45-20 to USC and 45-27 to UCF.
What did both of those defeats have in common?
Stanford was exploited by faster, more athletic teams.
Now Oregon’s rolling into town as the faster and more athletic team and fresh off last year’s embarrassing home collapse. If you don’t remember that game, Oregon was up 24-7 late in the third quarter and driving to end the game when disaster struck. The Ducks fumbled the ball and Stanford returned it 80 yards for a touchdown.
Then came overtime and Stanford found a way to steal a road win.
Not this year.
This year Oregon is putting this game away early; the Ducks win by two touchdowns or more.
Notre Dame at Georgia -13.5, now Georgia -14
It’s being billed as the game of the week, but I’m not sure I buy that at all.
Because I believe Georgia will come out and totally dominate against Notre Dame.
In fact, I think after this game many will be asking this question — is Georgia the best team in college football?
Right now I already believe the answer is yes, but I think I’ll have a lot of company in this opinion come late Saturday night.
Georgia’s complete on offense and defense in a way I don’t think anyone else in the country is right now and I love the steady leadership of Jake Fromm at quarterback.
So far this year Georgia has outscored opponents 148-23 and never really been tested by any opponent.
The Bulldogs are the class of the SEC East and I’m not sure there’s even a close second to them right now.
While I’m no longer of the belief that Notre Dame is the most overrated team in all of college football — Michigan has claimed that title — I do believe the Fighting Irish aren’t an elite team.
And you’d have to be an elite team to travel to Athens and win this year.
Give me the Bulldogs here by twenty or more points here.
There you have it, boys and girls, 11-0 right there in the pipeline.
#respectthepicks and let’s get rich, kids.