October 15, 2016
One NFL pick has been released for tomorrow so far.
In addition, a total of 4 college football picks were posted earlier for Saturday!
#1: Take NC State +17.5 spread against Clemson for 3% of the bankroll.
The NC State Wolfpack have been one of the more underrated teams this season. Despite sitting at 4-1 both SU and ATS, this is a team that could potentially be a dark horse in the ACC Title picture should they continue their winning ways. They have a chance to gain national attention as they head to Death Valley for a matchup with the No 3 Clemson Tigers. This is unquestionably the Pack's toughest test to date and we believe they realize that.
What has made the Pack so dangerous this season has been the fact that they are one of the more balanced clubs in the country. They rank in the Top 10 in both offensive and defensive scoring, averaging 35 points per game while holding their opponents to just 17. Their offense is led by Boise St transfer Ryan Finely. Finley has been excellent under center this season, completing 70% of his passes. What has been most impressive has been his ability to protect the football as he has yet to thrown an interception. While Finley has been terrific through the air, he has a genuine threat on the ground in Matthew Dayes. Days has eclipsed the 100-yard mark in every game this season and will pose a big threat to what has been a rather stout Clemson defense.
This is a dangerous game for the Tigers, despite being at home. After this contest they have a date with the Florida State Seminoles, a team that is expected to challenge for the ACC title this season as well and arguably the last team that stand in the way of the Tigers making the College Football Playoff once again this season. Even though the Tigers have a bye week next week, we wouldn't be surprised if at least some of their focus was spent on looking ahead to their matchup with FSU and somewhat disregarding this Wolfpack team that stands right in front of them.
Despite Clemson receiving all of the national attention, these teams are similar in many ways. Both have dynamic quarterbacks under center and both sport better than average defenses. Both have been extremely efficient on third down, which is key in extending drives and ensuring points get put on the board. While Clemson certainly has the more well-known skilled players, we believe NC State has the ability to keep things competitive and make this game much closer than anticipated. Last season the Wolfpack actually led the Tigers 20-19 in the first half before Clemson flexed their muscle in the second to come away with a 15-point victory.
This is a much better Wolfpack team than last season and we expect they will use last year’s meeting as motivation to show Clemson that they are capable of hanging with the big boys in the conference. Even though they will likely fall short of pulling off the outright upset, we believe the Wolfpack will gain the respect of many as they put a scare in the Tigers and manage to stay within this generous number. Even if Clemson pulls out to a big lead, there is always a chance that they let up on the gas and call off the dogs. If that is indeed the case, we wouldn't be surprised to see Finley lead his team on one final scoring drive which will put points on the board and find its way to a backdoor cover.
#2: Take Wisconsin +10.5 spread against Ohio State for 3% of the bankroll.
There is certainly no question that the Ohio State Buckeyes, led by Urban Meyer, are one of the best teams in the country. That being said, there are a number of angles that point to this matchup being less than ideal for the Buckeyes.
While Ohio State has one of the very best offenses in the country, they have been fortunate to have faced some of the very worst defenses in the country. Other than Indiana, whom the Buckeyes faced last week, they have faced defenses that have ranked outside of the Top 100 this season. Wisconsin is a legitimate top 3 defense in the country and will be the very best that the Buckeyes have faced all season long. Wisconsin has been dominant in the trenches and has a vaunted run defense that has held the opposition to just 90 yards per game on average. Their defensive front is legit and has already shown their ability to contain high powered offenses as they held the Michigan Wolverines, who are statistically the best scoring offense in the country to just 14 total points in Ann Arbor. They will be the first true test of the number 2 team in the country in this matchup.
This is also a revenge game for the Badgers. If you recall, just two seasons ago it was the Ohio State Buckeyes who put an absolute beating on Wisconsin enroute to their national championship season. Not only were the Badgers favored in that contest (and for good reason) but Meyer's team put on an absolute clinic, coming away with a blowout, 59-0 victory behind freshman Cardale Jones. The tables may be turned in this contest as the Badgers are a much better team than two years ago and while the Buckeyes may have talent, they are full of a lot of young, raw players who may not be accustomed to seeing a pro-level defense such as they type Wisconsin has.
If there has been one weakness that has been exploited on this Buckeyes' team, it has been their ability to hit the deep ball. JT Barrett is undoubtedly athletic and has been able to find the open receivers in the middle of the field and in front of the line, but his accuracy downfield has come into question. If the Wisconsin defenders can lock things up on the short crossing route and keep the ball in front of them, it will force Ohio State to look downfield and that is where the Wisconsin D can potentially capitalize on poorly thrown balls.
Turnovers have been something that the Badgers have thrived on this season, having forced 10 turnovers in 5 games this season. Ohio State isn't a team that turns the ball over often, so we have yet to see how mistakes will affect this young team. As we have said, this will be the best defense OSU has faced this season and we expect them to make some mistakes in this high profile road contest. Wisconsin has already knocked off the likes of LSU and Michigan State this season and a victory over the Buckeyes could potentially throw the Badgers in the playoff conversation come the end of the season.
This is a difficult matchup for Urban Meyer and his young team and even if they are able to somehow come out of Madison with a victory, we highly doubt that it will be by double digits. Wisconsin certainly has the ability to pull the upset and we expect that their defense will lead the way and at the very least keep their offense within striking distance which should be enough to cover this spread. Ohio State may get the win, but the points will likely come into play in this one.
#3: Take Arkansas +7.5 spread against Mississippi for 3% of the bankroll.
Recent perception of these two teams have no doubt played a factor in the odds for this contest. Ole Miss is coming off a couple of impressive wins and most recently have had the week off to prepare for this contest, while the Razorbacks have been in grueling contests over the last few weeks with the likes of Texas A&M and number 1 ranked Alabama. While the Hogs lost both of those, they have shown their ability to fight and is a team that has shown a ton of heart. Looking past those recent events we will see that despite the Rebels having covers in four straight SEC matchups, they are just 1-4 ATS in their last five road games. Meanwhile Arkansas is 14-6 ATS in their last 20 home games vs. a team with a winning road record and 9-4 ATS in their last 13 following a straight-up loss. We expect Arkansas to have a much better showing tonight at home in front of their home crowd.
These two teams were involved in an overtime thriller last season as the Razorbacks managed to come away with a 53-52 victory on the road in Oxford. That result wasn't actually too surprising as the Hogs have had the Rebels number in recent years. Back in 2014 in this stadium, back before much was actually "expected" of Arkansas, the Hogs managed to come away with a convincing 28-0 victory over Ole Miss. The Hogs own a 14-10 advantage over the Rebs dating back almost 30 years and are 8-4 (9-3 ATS) at home in Arkansas.
Both these teams have the ability to put points on the board and while Chad Kelly is the more proven QB at the moment, it should be mentioned that Austin Allen is coming off a pretty good performance against the Crimson Tide which saw him pass for over 400 yards on the number rated defense in the country. Ole Miss's defense has been shaky at best this season and if Allen can continue to have success through the air, he should be able to keep his team in striking distance. Arkansas has the better ground game and arguably the better passing game. While Ole Miss is the more experienced team, they better not sleep on the Hogs in this contest.
Arkansas will be seeking their first conference victory in this contest and that has been something that has plagued them in recent years. Their two losses this season have come to teams that are both undefeated and have legitimate shots at making the College Football playoffs this season. Ole Miss has had a couple of shaky performances this season where they have squandered leads and we wouldn't be surprised to see that happen in this contest. Arkansas made a bunch of mistakes in their losses to both Texas A&M and Alabama and we expect coach Bileima to recognize those mistakes and make corrections for this contest. This is a matchup that could honestly go either way, however the home team getting more than a touchdown cushion is simply too good to pass up in this situation.
#4: Take Tulsa +21.5 spread against Houston for 3% of the bankroll.
The Houston Cougars now find themselves in a somewhat interesting position having suffered their first loss of the season last week against the Navy Midshipmen. The Cougars has hoped to break the mold and make their way into the College Football playoff this season and were well on their way having already picked up a key victory over the Oklahoma Sooners. Despite their early success their season is all but over as with their loss to the Midshipmen, Houston no longer has a shot at making the playoffs this season. That has to be a crushing reality for a team who had such high hopes entering the season. That being said, it will certainly be interesting to see how the Cougars respond knowing that the AAC title and potential BCS berth is likely all they will achieve this season.
It could be reasonably expected that the Cougars come into this contest a bit demotivated and this is a dangerous opponent to face if Houston finds themselves in a flat spot. The Tulsa Golden Hurricane, while not national contenders have an extremely potent offense that is capable of putting points on the board in a hurry. The Golden Hurricane come in ranked 30th in total yards and 25th in scoring averaging 39.4 points per game. They are also extremely proficient passing the ball behind the arm of Dane Evans where they rank 57th in the nation.
The last two meetings between these teams have been decided by 14 points or less and this is a much better Tulsa team than years past. While it is certainly possible that the Houston Cougars come into this matchup motivated after their first loss, it’s important to remember that these are still kids; kids who just recently had their hopes and dreams crushed by a loss. While Houston is certainly a good team, we do expect them to come into this contest just a bit flat in the early going. That should be all the opportunity that Tulsa needs to put points on the board and keep this game close. Houston will eventually find their rhythm and get back into the game, however to expect them to win this contest by more than 3 touchdowns might be just too tall a task. Houston will likely get the win, but Tulsa will keep things close enough to get the cover.
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