Saturday Football Service Picks:
Re: Saturday Football Service Picks:
Larry Ness' 20* Conference GOY (PERFECT 4-0 in CFB '07 with 20* plays!)-Saturday
My 20* play is on Rutgers at 8:00 ET. Last year, with Rutgers ranked in the top-10 (No. 7) for the first time in school history and one of just four unbeatens remaining in CFB at 9-0, the Scarlet Knights lost at Cincinnati, 30-11! In fact, that win at Nippert Stadium was the start of Cincy's current eight-game winning streak! The Bearcats' convincing 52-23 win at San Diego St last Saturday, improved their record to 5-0 this year, marking their best start since beginning the 1954 campaign with eight wins. Meanwhile, Rutgers lost to Maryland last Saturday, 34-24 (as huge favorites!). Head coach Brian Kelly (via Div II Grand Valley State and Central Michigan) has brought a new wide-open attack to the offense, with both Ben Mauck (Wake transfer) and LY's starter Grutza, thriving. Mauck (70.0% / 9-2 ratio) is back in the starting role and Cincy's running game averages 193.0 YPG (4.6 per), giving the team excellent balance. The Cincy D allows just 10.6 PPG (4th) but the key has been the Bearcats' plus-14 turnover ratio (21 takeaways!). Rutgers has a very good D itself (276.0 YPG / 15.3 PPG) plus playmakers on offense led by Heisman Trophy candidate, RB Ray Rice (132.0 YPG / 5.6 YPC / 10 TDs). QB Mike Teel has made great strides TY, completing 62.4% with a 10-2 ratio (55.4% and a 12-13 ratio in '06), throwing to WRs Underwood (21.5 per / 4 TDs) and Britt (23.3 per / 3 TDs). Rutgers has two ways to go here. The team will either let LW's loss carry over or the Scarlet Knights will bounce back. I like what Greg Schiano has built here and I like that he stayed, when everyone expected him "to go," after LY's 11-2 season. Cincy is the perfect opponent to get Rutgers' season back on track. Revenge is a huge motivator and the Bearcats' 5-0 record has been built on a very weak schedule plus that ridiculous TO margin of plus-14. This year, Cincy has the target on its back, not Rutgers. While Rutgers was off on September 22 and lost at home to Maryland last week. the Bearcats are playing for the SIXTH straight week plus the Bearcats are coming back from their first visit to California in 49 years! Big East GOY 20* Rutgers.
Re: Saturday Football Service Picks:
(315) Wisconsin vs (316) Illinois
Take (315) Wisconsin
I 've been a big Illinois believer since before the season started. But now everyone's arrived at the party and it's time to go the other way. Illinois has lost the last two games on the stats but managed to win both. That's lost on the public as they are now flocking to this team, thus we're seeing them now favored at home against an unbeaten opponent. Wisconsin hasn't been dominating, but they do keep on winning. Illinois is now in a new scenario as they're suddenly expected to win, and they'll have to prove to me they're able to handle that pressure. I'm expecting a very tough game here and feel the value is clearly with Wisconsin and the points.
(389) UNLV vs (390) Air Force
Take (389) UNLV
Rebels are back on the road off the extremely disappointing loss at Reno. But they're 1-0 in MWC play so the letdown should not occur. It's a great physical matchup for UNLV. They have a big and improving OL that should shred the small Air Force defensive front. I expect UNLV RB Summers to have a monster day. The Falcons were as fraudulent a 3-0 squad as you'll ever see and the results the last two weeks have been far more realistic. They're also running the shotgun more frequently and UNLV sees that every day in practice. I see the Rebels as the better team and expect them to win this game.
(391) Tulsa vs (392) UTEP
Take (392) UTEP
This might be the highest scoring game of the day. The Tulsa no-huddle attack is rolling in a big way. But their defense is pretty awful and the Hurricane is running into a very excited UTEP squad fresh off a spectacular OT win at SMU. The Miners are running the ball very well and should continue to do so here. Big home field edge for UTEP and the Miners are perfect as HD's since Price arrived. Expect a wild contest with many ebbs and flows, and it should go to the wire. Grabbing a FG with the improving home team is the way I'm playing, and I feel UTEP has an excellent chance to win it outright.