Pezgordo’s College Football Picks – YTD: 51-48 ATS
6-5 last week. I again went 5-5 on posted picks, but nailed the newsletter ML parlay pick, needing an absolute miracle finish out of Ohio State to preserve the win. I started Saturday out 5-0 and then faded hard with some questionable picks (Kansas & Southern Miss) and some bad luck (lost the UCF – Memphis total on 2 defensive TDs and a garbage TD w/ 39 seconds left in the game),
Last week I beat the closing line in 9 of 10 games and my overall closing line value for week # 8 was +1.05.
After 8 weeks I have beaten the closing line in 72 of 97 games (74.23%), I have matched the closing line in 13 other games and I have wagered on the wrong side of the closing number in 12 games for an overall closing line value of +1.25
Iowa – Northwestern U 49.5
Iowa’s offense isn’t very good, but they have a solid D (allowing 20.83 ppg to teams that avg 24.86 ppg). Neither team really has any playmakers on offense, Iowa averages 4.93 yards per play (11th in the B1G) & Northwestern is 6th at 5.19 ypp. Defensively Northwestern is allowing 25.29 ppg to teams that average 25.82 ppg, whereas Iowa is averaging 19.83 ppg on offense against teams that allow 23.25 ppg.
Kentucky – Missouri U 49 (1.5 units)
Two struggling offenses with QB issues. In 5 SEC games Kentucky is avg 12.60 ppg, in 4 SEC games Missouri is avg 13.75 ppg. Missouri is dead last in the SEC in pass efficiency and UK is 10th. Missouri is also dead last in the league in rushing yards per game and UK is 9th. Neither defense is in the top half of the league, but they have both played some of the best offenses in the SEC including Georgia, Alabama, Arkansas and Mississippi State.
I used this game as our weekly SEC video at SECPRESSPASS. We are 6-1 the last 7 weeks with the video.
Unles you are Alabama, this is too many points to give in an SEC road game. Auburn was in a position to beat Vandy last week but turned the ball over on downs in Vandy territory on their final possession. Johnny Football has some amazing stats, but the majority of them were accumulated against non-SEC schools and an Arkansas team that was discombobulated at the time. Against the other 3 SEC D’s A & M has faced, they are averaging 22 ppg and allowing 23.67 ppg. I am certainly not suggesting that Auburn’s D is anywhere near as good as Florida and LSU’s, but it is probably in the range of Mississippi’s, and Ole Miss held A & M to 23 offensive points.
The Arizona offense has put up a ton of yards and points against better defenses than what USC brings to Tucson on Saturday. With Oregon up next week, USC could also be considered in a “look ahead spot,” though I put very little value in that garbage.
Notre Dame – Oklahoma U 48.5
Two of the better defenses in college football and one team struggles to score on offense. Notre Dame has allowed 5 TDs all season and we are in week # 9 (Alabama has allowed 6). This is a good defense. By contrast the Notre Dame offense has put up 20, 20, 13, 20 (7 in OT) & 17 points vs the 5 best D’s they’ve faced all year, only two of which (BYU & Michigan State) have a better defensive ppg average than OU.
Nebraska’s D typically struggles against dual threat QBs. Now they face one of the best dual threat QBs in college football (well I don’t know how much of a dual threat Robinson is considering his passing deficiencies). Except for that Alabama game, the Michigan D has been solid. Revenge spot for Nebraska ….. Whatever!
Michigan State +7 (-115)
Bad spot for Sparty, they put everything into beating Michigan last week, that was their Super Bowl …. Blah, blah, blah. At 4-4 Michigan State cannot afford a let down, they need to start winning some football games. They’ve lost 3 B1G games by a total of 6 points. Wisky is back on track, they’ve won three in a row, their running game is finally performing like we thought it would … blah, blah, blah. They beat Illinois (the worst team in the league), Purdue (who’s D sucks) and Minny …. that’s not saying much. I’ll take the +7 in what should be a defensive battle.
In what has to be one of the most misleading box scores of the year, Florida scored 44 points on South Carolina last week while gaining 184 yards. You think the Gamecocks gift-wrapped that one? In their past three games Florida has passed for 94, 77 & 61 yards. This is still a one-dimensional offense being asked to cover a TD on a neutral field in a rivalry game.
Mississippi State – Alabama U 48
This will be the best defense that either team has seen all season long. A good Bulldog secondary should keep big plays in the passing game to a minimum. I believe the Miss State team total is 12.5, so no one, including myself is expecting them to score a lot of points in Tuscaloosa.
UCLA +7 (-120)
Alma mater be damned, I have looked at this game from every angle and can’t see why ASU is a TD favorite. Statistically these two teams are nearly dead even. Versus their competition level, I have ASU 2 points better on offense and on defense I surprisingly have UCLA +0.75. ASU is banged up on the DL and I am pretty sure that DT Will Sutton will not be playing tomorrow. You saw how important Sutton was last week against Oregon. On the first play of the game he blew up the Oregon zone read option causing a fumble. Unfortunately he was injured on that play and it was all downhill from there for the Devil D. UCLA has a good rushing attack and should have some success tomorrow against the ASU run D.