October 17, 2015 (11:00 AM ET)
There are 3 college football plays today. They were all released a day in advance, on Friday afternoon.
1) Take Memphis at +10.5 spread against Mississippi for 3% of the bankroll.
Yes this is a matchup between a nationally ranked SEC team in the Ole Miss Rebels, taking on a 'lesser' AAC opponent in the Memphis Tiger’s, however the Rebels best not make the mistake of overlooking the Tigers in this contest. Memphis has somewhat flown under the radar but they are a quality team. Led by NFL 'sleeper' Paxton Lynch, Memphis quietly comes into this game undefeated on the season and on a 12 game winning streak dating back to last season. Only 2 teams are on longer winning streaks at the moment and that are the No 1 & No 2 ranked teams in the country, the Ohio State Buckeyes and TCU Horned Frogs.
There is no question that this is considered the 'Superbowl' for the Tigers so they will be motivated for this contest. As we had mentioned earlier, Paxton Lynch is having a tremendous season overall, completing 70.5 percent of his passes for 1,535 yards with 10 TDs and no interceptions thus far. He has four receivers with 200 or more yards receiving led by Anthony Miller, the speedster with 15 catches for 304 yards (averaging 20.3 yards per catch). The tigers are more than capable of keeping up with the Rebels offensively, especially considering the Ole Miss defense has been a little 'soft' as of late.
Ole Miss has struggled a bit on the defensive front as they’ve allowed an average of 134 yards per game and 204 yards per game in the air. Their pass defense was really exposed in their blowout loss to the Florida Gators as they surrendered 271 yards through the air against a team that was not exactly a huge threat through the air. The Memphis offense will surely put the Rebels to the test in this contest. It's worth mentioning that this is a revenge game for the Tigers as these two teams met last season in Oxford in a game that was 7-3 in the 4th quarter before the Rebels ultimately pulled away. This is also an incredibly dangerous spot for the Rebels as they have a big matchup with the Texas A&M Aggies on deck in their next contest, so it wouldn't be surprising to see these players somewhat dismissing their AAC opponents and start looking ahead to conference matchup.
This is an incredibly dangerous matchup for the Rebels in a game that no doubt means much more to the Tigers. Ole Miss is no doubt the better team from the better conference, but we don't believe they will run away with this game. Ole Miss will be lucky to escape Memphis with a win and the Tigers should do enough to keep this within a single score.
Other notable facts to consider:
- Memphis is 15-5 ATS in its last 21 non-conference games!
- Ole Miss has covered only one of its last 5 road games.
- Memphis is 9-3-1 ATS last 13 after allowing less than 20 points in their previous game.
2) Take Oklahoma at -4 spread against Kansas State for 3% of the bankroll.
Both of these teams are coming off somewhat stunning losses. The Oklahoma sooners were completely upended by the struggling Texas Longhorns in their annual Red River Rivalry. While that loss was somewhat unexpected, the loss that Kansas State experienced against the Number 2 ranked TCU Horned Frogs is the one that likely stung the most and will have the most effect on this matchup with Oklahoma this week.
The Kansas State Wildcats had their game completely in hand and was poised to deliver the knockout blow and give the Horned Frogs their first loss of the year. Up 11 with only a few minutes left in the 4th quarter, the Wildcats completely let the game get away from them, allowing Boykin to rush for an 85 yard touchdown and on the ensing drive left dynamic WR John Doctson completely wide open for the go ahead score. On the final drive of the game by Kansas State, the TCU pressure got to QB Joe Huebner and a sack fumble sealed the Wildcats fate. An overly emotional Huebner could be seen sobbing on the sidelines as he realized how they salted away what was a sure victory. That is a tough loss to bounce back from especially when they have what should be a pissed off Sooners squad coming to town.
The Sooners are not a team that loses many games, but when they do they become extremely dangerous in their follow up contest. Dating all the way back to 2003, the Sooners are an impressive 23-0 in games after a loss. Bob Stoops knows how to motivate his team and the players seem to respond well when playing with the motivation of a loss. Oklahoma has not lost back to back games since Bob Stoops 1st season back in 1999! This is also a revenge game for Oklahoma as Kansas State managed to upset the Sooners last season in Norman. There is no doubt the players remember that and would like to exact a little bit of revenge on their Big 12 rivals this afternoon.
Snyder Stadium is no doubt an incredibly tough place to play, which is why we backed the Wildcats last weekend against TCU, however this is a completely different matchup. The Oklahoma Sooners revamped Air-Raid offense is similar to that of the Horned Frogs. They have quick strike ability and QB Baker Mayfield has been doing a great job leading the offense. Mayfield has a stellar 14 passing touchdowns to just three interceptions through five games this season. He has completed 108 of 163 attempts (66.3 percent) for 1,593 yards. Even in the setback against Texas the junior completed 71.4 percent of his passes and did not throw an interception. Meanwhile, Joe Huebner has been great at the helm for the Wildcats, his skill set is somewhat limited. His strength has been more with his legs and running with the football as he's struggle through the air, completing a mere 47.7 percent of his passes this season.
The Oklahoma coaching staff has made it a point and even stated in interviews this past week that a part of the Sooners' struggles in game has been their inability to get off to fast starts. They struggled against both Tennessee and Texas before making late game rallies in both. They would like to see Mayfield and the offense play like that straight out of the gate and that is what we expect to see from the Sooners this afternoon. They will no doubt ramp up the defensive pressure to contain Huebner on the ground and force him to beat them through the air. Oklahoma has a much better defense than the Horned Frogs and we expect to see that on display in this contest. Kansas State has allowed 33 or more points in each of their last 3 contests and we expect something similar today. Oklahoma has covered the number in 5 of their last 6 trips to Manhanttan and when Kansas State has been unranked nationally, they are 0-35 against teams from Oklahoma. This matchup lines up perfectly for a Sooners bouncback perfromance and they respond with a big time win and cover this afternoon.
3) Take Florida at +7.5 spread against LSU for 3% of the bankroll.
There is no question that LSU's Leonard Fournette is a beast. Many experts have already declared that he is the frontrunner for the Heisman trophy and for good reason. Fournette is no doubt the best player in college football and Florida will have their hands full trying to contain him, but if there is one team in the country who has the defense to do that; it's the Gators. The question then will be what else does LSU have in their arsenal to win this game?
Fournette accounts for 45.4% of LSU's total yards from scrimmage which leads all Power 5 players. What that means is that half of LSU's offense revolves around Fournette's ability to run. All players at some time or another have 'off' games or less than impressive outings and we have yet to see that from Fournette. Last week against the Gamecocks, the South Carolina defense did a remarkable job of containing Fournette for 3 quarters, holding him to just 70 yards on the ground, before a back-braking 80+ yard TD run completely changed the landscape of the game. That pushed Fournette's total above 150 yards and gave him once again another impressive performance. Florida is a much better defensive team than SC and if they follow a similar blueprint, they can have success in at least slowing down Fournette's production and force QB Brandon Harris to make plays through the air.
Harris is no a polished product and the responsibility of the offense and to put points on the board has not been put on his shoulders at all this season. We have not seen too much from Harris at this point so it will be interesting to see if he cracks under the pressure, if the Gators are able to take away the ground game. Against these ball hawking Gator DBs, Harris will need to be very careful and decisive with the football. We have seen him at times just throw the ball up there for his receivers this season; against Florida, that type of play will likely result in turnovers.
A lot of people are also talking about the loss of Florida QB Will Grier. While Grier is a loss to the team, he is not the catalyst of this team. Let's also not forget, that Grier was named the starter after a QB competition between himself and Treon Harris in the offseason. Harris is a former Gator starter and actually starter the first game of the season which was a rout of New Mexico State. Harris is not as polished a pocket passer as Grier is, however he is a dual threat QB and adds another dimension to this offense. LSU has been known to overcommit on the defensive end at times and have struggled containing the mobile type quarterbacks (Dak Prescott, Johnny Manziel, Cam Newton) and Harris can hurt the Tigers by either tucking the ball and running or scrambling around the pocket looking to extend plays. He is a completely different player to game plan for than Grier is.
This is the type of game that has an incredibly low scoring feel. We don't believe there will be a lot of offensive points scored in this contest and it will likely be hard for either team to create separation on the scoreboard. This game will likely be won in the trenches and with solid defensive play. Heading into Death Valley at night is no easy place to play however we do feel it is worth mentioning that the last 5 times the Florida Gators have been listed as underdogs, they are 5-0 ATS and they even managed to win 4 of those 5 games outright. Their loss came in the 2014 season as 7.5 point underdogs at Florida State and the Gators did manage to keep that game close ultimately losing by 5. Now we don't actually need the Gators to pick up the outright win, but we do believe their defense will keep them in the game and the offense puts enough points on the board to stay within this generous number.
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