A Full Board to Pick Winners
Week 2 Review: 2-3. Winners: Wisconsin -26 and Michigan -7. Losers: NC State -1, Utah -7 and Georgia St +26.
- Georgia St is the only real regret. BYU surprised virtually everybody and NC State was another consensus pick who just didn’t bring it on the road.
On to Week 3! The sport is continuing to wean itself off of non-conference games with the SEC putting its top two teams into conference play for the first time. This Saturday has more intriguing P5 non-conference matchups than I can recall in any Week 3 in memory, a weekend typically filled with a last soft tune-up before conference play begins.
Bet 1: Cincinnati -3.5 at Indiana (11am CT, ESPN; all odds via PointsBet)
It isn’t often an AAC team is favored on the road against a B1G foe, especially one who had as good a season as IU had in 2020, but it’s for good reason here. Indiana’s offense has been slow out of the gate, with Michael Penix Jr. not rediscovering his pre-injury 2020 magic through two games. Marcus Freeman may be gone, but this CU defense is still going to cause havoc. Getting a legitimate top 10 team at this price against a team that will take some time to get back into their rhythm isn’t something we can pass up. In the last 7 years this is just the 25th time a G5 team has been favored on the road vs a P5 team. The G5 favorite is 17-7 SU so far. Win 18 tomorrow.
Bet 2: Auburn at Penn St under 52 (6:30pm, ABC)
The public has been strong on both Auburn and the under in this game, betting the total down 4 points from 56 and the spread from PSU -7 to -5. I like the low scoring outcome more than Auburn playing the game closer than a touchdown, though both is a strong possibility. Auburn’s last 4 marquee September non-cons from 2016-19 (Clemson, Clemson, Washington, Oregon) all went under 50 points, all but the last one significantly. Penn St’s offense isn’t what it was in the McSorely-Barkley days where they could quickly reel off 45 themselves with Beaver Stadium behind them.
Bet 3: Stanford -12.5 at Vanderbilt (7:05pm, ESPNU)
Despite beating the somehow-employed Steve Addazio, Vanderbilt is by no means back. David Shaws group might not run a high octane spread that covers 2 TD’s without blinking an eye, but 2 TD’s might be all they need over the course of 60 minutes to cover this spread given Vandy’s chances on offense. Don’t overthink this game that has 31-3 written all over it.
Bet 4: Moneyline Parlay – Michigan St +200 at Miami (11am, ABC) WITH Purdue +235 at Notre Dame (1:30pm, NBC) = +905 Total
Worth the risk to try and leverage the last gasp of Miami and ND’s preseason perception. Neither program has done anything to justify their preseason ranking through 2 games, yet both remain in the top 25 with a weak market expectation to beat an undefeated B1G visitor. Both home favorites meeting reality is not as slim a possibility as +905 would suggest.
Best Bet: Florida +14.5 vs Alabama (2:30pm, CBS)
I’ll get it right out of the way, I think Florida is going to win straight up. This will be chapter 3 in the book of new starting QB’s not handling their first major test at Clemson, Ohio State, and now Alabama. Bryce Young has been virtually flawless so far, but when you’re on the road for the first time and it’s against the #11 team with 80,000+ screaming for your failure, life comes at you fast. It’s going to take Florida’s best game, much the way Oregon continually executed in Columbus, but once everyone in the Swamp senses blood in the water and how serious the possibility of upset is, they aren’t going to let the opportunity slip, but you have 14.5 points just in case.
Good luck to all! (3-4 ATS on the season)