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College Football Week 7 Betting News and Notes

College Football Week 7 Betting News and Notes

Games to Watch - Week 7
By Christian Alexander

Oklahoma at Texas

The Red River Shootout (I refuse to call it the 'rivalry' based strictly on principle) which has been played in Dallas every year since 1929 has lost a little bit of its luster this year as both teams come in with one loss. However to these two fan bases that simply dislike the other, this is still just as big of a game. While West Virginia and Kansas St appear to be the teams to beat in the Big 12, other than Oklahoma State last year, one of these two teams had claimed the Big 12 crown seven straight years. Texas is coming in off a 48-45 track meet loss at home to West Virginia where their defense that was so highly touted to start the season was once again exposed giving up 207 rushing yards and 460 total yards. Offensively Texas has one of the most balanced attacks in the country behind surprise QB Davis Ash and a handful of talented running backs. Oklahoma has played well below their preseason expectations on both sides of the ball so far this season but does come in off a 41-20 victory against Texas Tech in Lubbock. This game will either come down to which team's fan base eats the most Fletcher's Corny Dogs in the fairgrounds outside or which team's defense is able to execute when it matters most. In either case with each team having one conference loss, the loser of this game is all but out of the Big 12 conference race. Texas leads the series 59-42-5, although Oklahoma has won the last two (including 55-17 last year). OU is a field goal favorite and this game could very easily come down to just that.

Stanford at Notre Dame

Apparently 1990 called and Notre Dame answered. No one in college football has been a bigger surprise this year than the Golden Domers. With the exception of the hideous uniforms and helmets the Irish wore on Saturday night they have been extremely impressive in all facets of the game through their first five games. The Irish are 5-0 for the first time since 2002 and their 587 yards of offense against the Hurricanes was a season high, including 376 yards rushing which was their most since Nov. 11, 2000. Yet the most impressive part of Notre Dame this year has been their defense which currently ranks second in the country allowing a mere 7.8 points per game. Needless to say the 'hot seat' that Brian Kelly entered the year on has cooled off in South Bend. This week The Irish host probably their toughest game yet. While they have looked great beating up on the Big 10 and ACC the Stanford Cardinal presents a real challenge for ND. Stanford QB Josh Nunes is coming off a career high 360 yard game and standout RB Stepfan Taylor rushed for 132 yards, however the Arizona defense is a far cry from what the Cardinal will face this week. These two teams have two of the best front seven defensively in the country and I expect this to be a very physical, very entertaining football game. Stanford has won three straight in the series, including 28-14 last year at home, but this doesn't appear to be the same Notre Dame team as a year ago. Notre Dame is a home touchdown favorite and if they can get by Stanford the rest of their schedule is…well…still really hard.

South Carolina at LSU

Congratulations South Carolina, you just manhandled the 5th ranked Georgia Bulldogs at home. Your reward…you get to take on LSU…in Death Valley…at night…coming off a loss. There are not many places in the country harder to play than Death Valley where LSU is riding a nation-leading 21-game home winning streak and having won 47 of its 53 home games under Coach Les Miles. (Especially when you give 95,000+ Cajuns all day to get liquored up) Throw in the fact that LSU has dominated the series (16-2-1) with four straight wins and that's why the odds makers have the 3rd ranked Gamecocks as a field goal underdog in this game. However, according to Gamecocks tailback Marcus Lattimore, "It's not the old South Carolina. We can play with y'all. We can play with anybody." Well, we are certainly about to find out. These two teams both rank in the top 10 defensively in the country allowing less than 13 points a game, however South Carolina has looked much better and more balanced on offense this season with Shaw and Lattimore than LSU with Mettenberger and a committee of running backs. The best part of this entire game however will be the match-up between "The Mad Hatter" and "The Ol' Ball Coach." Before the game, during the game and after the game we will all be treated to countless quotes, questionable decisions and countless facial expressions. No matter who wins this games we will all be entertained.

West Virginia at Texas Tech

UPSET ALERT. West Virginia is coming off a huge road win against Texas and has what appears to be the Big 12 game of the year next weekend at home against Kansas State. However sandwiched in-between they go to Lubbock this weekend which historically can be a very tough place to play for highly ranked teams. The odds makers only have West Virginia as a 4 point favorite; and if they have an emotional letdown or look ahead to next week's game against Kansas St they could very easily fall victim to Texas Tech. Then again, if they don't, this game has the potential to get very ugly for The Red Raiders.

Oregon State at BYU

Desmond Howard is all-in on the Beavers. I'm not, at least not yet. While they have beaten three teams that were preseason ranked (Wisconsin, UCLA , Arizona) none of those teams are ranked anymore and quite frankly aren't very good; and they won those games by a combined nine points. Throw in a win over a bad Washington State team last weekend and their four wins are simply not that impressive. BYU, while offensively challenged, does boast one of the best defenses in the country and will present a problem for an Oregon St offense that ranks 93rd in the NCAA in points scored. BYU opens as a field goal favorite and this game will simply come down to which team is able to muster up any resemblance of an offense.

Texas A&M at Louisiana Tech

Both of these teams are ranked in the top 25…seriously, I looked it up twice just to make sure. This is a make-up game from the opening weekend of the season when it was postponed due to Hurricane Isaac. Louisiana Tech has built a 5-0 resume by simply outscoring their competition. They are 3rd in the NCAA averaging 53.2 points a game; however they are 109th allowing 35.8 points per game. In other words, look for Aggie freshman QB Johnny Manziel and the Aggie offense to have a very big day. The question simply becomes can the La Tech offense keep up against an A&M defense that just surrendered 464 yards to Ole Miss last week in a dramatic come from behind win in Oxford. The Aggies are a touchdown favorite in what should be a back-and-forth shootout in Shreveport.

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Re: College Football Week 7 Betting News and Notes

Week 7 Early Line Moves Report
By Alf Musketa

Kent at Army
Army opened -1.5, Kent now -2 

Sure, with much parody in all sports these days we see more and more pointspreads fall in the 1-2 range, but this move is not a market play but a handicapper’s adaptation of what the line should be and which team they obviously favor. Army is giving up 6.1 yards per carry and Kent has a couple of solid running backs in Trayion Durham and Dri Archer. From a power ratings perspective I have Army at -3.5 and I disagree with the move, but do not necessarily want Army here. The Black Knights cannot stop anyone and I prefer not to invest in games where little or no defense is played.

Louisville at Pittsburgh
Louisville opened -1.5 now -3.5 

This is a significant move on the Cardinals and why not, they are 5-0, and Pitt has looked like the Keystone Cops at times this season. The spot favors Louisville coming off a bye with extra time to prepare while Pitt could only manage 13 points against a soft Syracuse defense. I agree with the move.
Florida at Vanderbilt
Florida opened -9 now -7.5 

There is not much difference between a pointspread of -7.5 and -9 points and rarely do pro handicappers tease college football games. The market players are not responsible for this move there is no scalp or middle to attack, at least not yet. We see this move as possibly another spot play, where Florida is coming off a big win at home versus LSU and now on the road laying points against a gutsy Vandy team. But here is also another handicapping factor to look at; the total is low, opened 41 and the first move was a bet down to 40.5. It doesn't make much sense to be laying a pile of points with a low total.
Alabama at Missouri
Alabama opened -17.5 now -21.5 

This game has moved fast due to two reasons. First, Alabama is by far the consensus best team in the nation and any time you can get the best of the number take it because it is only going to move in one direction. Second, Missouri suspended five players that were involved in a drug charge for their last game, they are questionable against Alabama, but the main player that is now listed as out is QB James Franklin. I'd say Franklin is worth 3-5 points and his replacement Corben Berkstresser must now face the best defense in the country. A tough task indeed.
Stanford at Notre Dame
Total opened 49, now 45.5 

Supporting the 5-0 Fighting Irish has been one fine (4-1 ATS). As has the UNDER (1-4 O/U) thanks to their 13th ranked defense. Notre Dame has only allowed one team (Purdue) to score more than 10 points. College football totals are coming out on Monday early afternoon and limit bets are moving them quickly 2-3 points at a time.
Utah at UCLA
UCLA opened -5.5, now -7.5 

Why would sharp handicappers want to back UCLA after looking abysmal in their game last week at Cal? Well you could look into the box score and notice that UCLA basically threw the game away with four interceptions and two lost fumbles and once the game was out of reach they decided to play second and third stringers. Plus, Utah at 2-3 has shown that it has no offense to match respectable Pac-12 opponents especially on the road. It's probably a case of a little of both and I also believe now that the line has crossed -7 to -7.5 there will be a few market players buying it back later in the week.

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Re: College Football Week 7 Betting News and Notes

CFB: Streaks, Tips, Notes

Stanford at Notre Dame

The Stanford Cardinals (4-1, 2-3 ATS) surviving a scare this past week requiring OT to defeat Arizona 54-48 will look to make it ten straight wins in the month of October and four straight victories over Fighting Irish. Both Cardinal streaks could topple, this is not the same Notre Dame team that Cardinals smacked 28-14 last year, 34-14 the previous year. This Notre Dame (5-0, 4-1 ATS) squad leaning on defense allowing a miniscule 7.8 points on 290.0 total yards/game is a far cry from what Josh Nunes and company have had to handle this season. Expect Cardinals to fall to 0-2 in road games and fall to 1-5-1 ATS on the road scoring =< 30 points.

West Virginia at Texas Tech

West Virginia (5-0, 2-3 ATS) coming off a huge 48-45 road win at Texas as 7.5 point dogs now travel to Lubbock for a clash with Texas Tech (4-1, 4-1 ATS). West Virginia could be victims of a letdown in this spot. The Mountaineers are not only facing an angry Red Raider squad taken behind the woodshed spanked 41-20 by Oklahoma last week but also looking ahead to it's huge BIG-12 tilt vs. Kansas State next week. Red Raiders with one of the better defenses' in the league surrendering 16.8 PPG on 210.0 YPG could keep this within cover range. Then again, Mountaineers with it's dominant offense racking up 52.0 PPG on 570.8 total yards could just as easily turn this into another ugly game for Red Raiders currently on an 0-7 ATS home skid hosting a team with a winning road record, 2-5 ATS as pups of 4 or less points.

Alabama at Missouri

Dismantled 41-20 by Georgia in it's SEC debut, then whacked 31-10 by South Carolina followed by a 19-15 home loss to Vanderbilt the Missouri Tigers (3-3, 2-3 ATS) are finding the grind of SEC play tough. It won't get easier Saturday when Crimson Tide (5-0, 2-3 ATS) the #1 team in the nation with the best scoring defense (7.0 PPG) visits Faurot Field in Columbia also known as 'The ZOU'. Although Mizzou has proven very resilient in this spot winning it's past five SU/ATS and seven of eight SU/ATS following a defeat no likely upset in the making considering Tigers will be without starting QB James Franklin. But, Tigers' defense holding 12 of their last 17 visitors at 24 or less points sets the tone for a possible defensive battle which improves Mizzou's chances at the betting window. Consider taking the 21 point spot as Crimson Tide are currently ridding a 2-5 ATS skid laying 18 or more points and on a 3-6 ATS skid on the road scoring =< 30 points.

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Big Ten Report - Week 7

Wisconsin and Purdue match-up this week in the Big Ten's marquee game. Surprisingly this meeting between the Badgers and the Boilers could decide the Leaders division representative in the Big Ten title game. ASA has the full preview for that game, as well as every other match-up (includes Michigan State-Iowa & Minnesota-Northwestern). Get all the answers inside!

Purdue (-2.5) vs. Wisconsin

PU: Last week vs. Michigan: L 13-44
UW: Last week vs. Illinois: W 31-14

With Penn State and Ohio State ineligible for the postseason, and Illinois and Indiana not showing many signs of life, this game could decide the Leaders Division representative for the Big Ten championship. Motivation shouldn't be a factor here as both coaches know how big this game is. Wisconsin's win over Illinois looked to be a cakewalk by the look of the final score (31-14), but it definitely wasn't. It was 7-7 at halftime and Wisconsin put a couple of late touchdowns on the board to pull away. The defense put in another solid performance, holding the Illini to just 284 yards and 15 first downs. Offensively the Badgers still can't seem to find their rhythm as this unit ranks 107th in yards per game and 91st in points per game.

No Big Ten team disappointed more in week six than Danny Hope's Boilers. Purdue spotted Michigan a 25-point lead midway through the 2nd quarter and never really challenged the Wolverines. The Boilers managed just 213 yards on offense while turning the ball over four times. The defense has taken significant steps backward the past two weeks, allowing 41 points to Marshall and 44 points to Michigan in two home games. There's a bit of a quarterback controversy as Caleb TerBush has struggled recently. Robert Marve may be the better option, despite a torn ACL. Coach Hope stated that TerBush will remain the starter, but coaches will decide later in the week how to integrate Marve into the game.

Recent history: Wisconsin is 6-0 SU & ATS in the last six straight meetings, winning by an average of 23 points per game (average score of 35-12). Last year the Badgers piled on 605 yards and 62 points in a blowout at home. Montee Ball rushed for 223 yards and three scores.

Trends: The Badgers are 5-1 ATS in their last six games as an underdog. Purdue is 1-5 ATS in its last six Big Ten games.

Injury report: Purdue RB Ralph Bolden finally could return this week. After rushing for 935 yards and tallying 11 total touchdowns in 2009, Bolden didn't play in 2010, played sparingly in 2011 before another knee injury, and hasn't played at all this year yet.

Michigan State (-10) vs. Iowa

MSU: Last week at Indiana: W 31-27
UI: Last week: BYE

It's ridiculously early, but the Hawkeyes are tied for the Legends Division lead. A win here over the sporadic Spartans could further shake up the division race. Iowa had a week off to prepare for this road trip to East Lansing. The Hawks had a morale boosting win over rival Minnesota two weeks ago. Offensively the Hawks got another strong performance from walk-on RB Mark Weisman, who now has now rushed for 507 yards (7.0 YPC) and seven touchdowns the last three games. QB Vandenberg continues to struggle, however, as he's completing less than 59% of his passes with just two touchdowns and two interceptions (threw for 25 touchdowns and seven interceptions last season). This offense will face their stiffest test of the season against this Spartans defense that ranks 11th against the run and 25th against the pass.
Michigan State hasn't had a complete performance since a September 8th win over Central Michigan. Since then they scored three points in a loss to Notre Dame, struggled to beat a bad Eastern Michigan team, lost to Ohio State at home, and barely beat Indiana on the road last week. Sparty was down 14-27 at Indiana last week. The defense shut down the Hoosiers in the 2nd half and MSU survived a four-point victory. Offensively the Spartans rank 100th in points per game and things won't get any easier against this Hawkeye defense that seems to be improving every week.

Recent history: Iowa is 4-2 SU over the last six meetings and & 8-2 ATS in the last 10 meetings, including a win & cover the last time here in East Lansing. MSU took a 31-7 lead into halftime of last year's meeting at Iowa. The Spartans cruised to a 37-21 win.

Trends: Iowa is 1-9 ATS in its last 10 road games and 1-11 ATS in its last 12 following a straight up win. Michigan State is 9-17-1 ATS its last 27 Big Ten home games.

Injury report: Michigan State tight end Dion Sims will miss Saturday's game against Iowa, leaving the Spartans without their leading receiver (24 receptions, 313 yards). Iowa will have top cornerback Micah Hyde on the field at Michigan State. Hyde was arrested during the weekend for public intoxication and interfering with official acts. Because he's a first-time offender, Iowa's student-athlete conduct policy doesn't require him to miss a game.

Minnesota (+3.5) vs. Northwestern

UM: Last week: BYE
NU: Last week at Penn State: L 28-39

Another virtual division elimination game as the winner will stay alive in the Legends race, while the loser is probably done. Both squads are off of their first loss of the season; Northwestern at Penn State last week and Minnesota at Iowa two weeks ago. Minnesota QB Max Shortell struggled under center against the Hawkeyes, throwing for just 197 yards with two touchdowns and three interceptions. As coach Jerry Kill said, the Gophers really need top quarterback MarQueis Gray to get healthy. Also unsettling was the play of Minnesota's defense, which couldn't stop Iowa's rushing attack Weisman. Northwestern brings one of the top rushing offenses in the nation here, averaging 232 yards per game (17th nationally).

Despite a sluggish offensive day overall (247 total yards), Northwestern put itself in position for a win at Penn State last week. The Wildcats led 28-17 midway through the 4th quarter before allowing 22 unanswered points to the Nittany Lions. The Wildcats couldn't get any pressure on PSU QB McGloin and he threw for 282 yards and two touchdowns while they notched 161 rush yards. That's not promising considering that the PSU offense ranks in the bottom half of all major defensive categories. Minnesota ranks similar offensively to Penn State, so this will be an interesting matchup if Northwestern can bounce back.

Recent history: Northwestern has won four of the last five overall, but Minnesota has covered seven of the last nine overall. The Wildcats jumped out to a 21-7 first quarter lead last season and not much happened after that. Northwestern won 28-13 but failed to cover as the 16-point favorite.

Trends: Minnesota is 6-0 ATS in its last six home games and 8-2 ATS in its last 10 games overall. The Wildcats are 5-13 ATS in the last 18 conference games.

Injury report: Minnesota quarterback MarQueis Gray participated in Sunday's light practice and will be on the field this week when the team begins its prep for Northwestern. Coach Jerry Kill is "cautiously optimistic" Gray has a chance to play against the Wildcats.

Michigan (-23.5) vs. Illinois

UM: Last week at Purdue: W 44-13
UI: Last week at Wisconsin: L 14-31

Illinois is struggling in all facets. It ranks 102nd in yards per game and 104th in points per game. Their QB Scheelhaase has three touchdowns and five interceptions this season while their leading rusher has just 227 yards. Defensively the Illini are allowing more than 40 points per game against its past four FBS opponents. They have had particular trouble slowing down spread teams, which is evident in the 45 points allowed to Arizona State and the 52 allowed to Louisiana Tech. That could mean a big day for Denard Robinson and this Michigan offense that put up 44 points at Purdue a week ago.

Off it its bye week, Michigan got its best performance of the season against Purdue. The defense recorded four takeaways (returned one for a score) and allowed just 213 yards. QB Denard Robinson rebounded well after his disastrous game against Notre Dame. He tallied 235 rush yards and one passing touchdown and didn't throw any interceptions. Overall they ran for 304 yards and that allowed Michigan to hold the ball for +12.5 minutes time of possession. Michigan can't afford a letdown here by looking ahead to its home showdown against Michigan State next week.

Recent history: Michigan is 8-2 SU the last 10 meetings, but Illinois is 4-2 ATS in the previous six meetings. Last season Michigan held Illinois to just 214 total yards, including 37 rush yards on 33 carries. It was an ugly game that featured six total turnovers and Michigan won and covered, 31-14.

Trends: Illinois is 1-4 ATS in its last five conference games and 1-4 ATS in its last five road games. The Illinis are also 8-3 ATS in their last 11 games as a 20+ point underdog (5-0 ATS run). Michigan is 8-24 ATS in its last 32 conference games.

Injury report: Illinois cornerback Terry Hawthorne, who left the field last Saturday at Wisconsin in an ambulance, has recovered well but still must pass a concussion test before playing again. Redshirt freshman Eaton Spence will start in Hawthorne's place if he can't play.

Indiana (+17) vs. Ohio State

UI: Last week vs. Michigan State: L 27-31
OSU: Last week vs. Nebraska: W 63-38

Ohio State has to avoid a letdown here on the road at Indiana after its big win against Nebraska last week. The Buckeyes saw what almost happened to MSU in Bloomington a week ago so they won't be taking the Hoosiers lightly. OSU put on a scoring clinic last week against the Huskers. The Bucks tallied 371 rush yards (7.7 YPC average) and six touchdowns, Braxton Miller threw for one touchdown, and they scored on an interception return and a punt return. Defensively the Bucks allowed a lot of yards and 38 points, but they forced four turnovers and were able to get constant pressure on the quarterback. Expect more big numbers for the offense this week against Indiana's 95th ranked defensive unit.

Indiana is much improved from a year ago, though its progress has merely translated into agonizing losses against Ball State, Northwestern and Michigan State. Still, it's a promising development that the Hoosiers are actually competitive this season. It looked as though they would record their first signature win of the Kevin Wilson era last week. They dominated the first half against Michigan State and sliced through the Big Ten's top defense with their up-tempo attack. They led 27-14 at halftime but didn't record another point. QB Coffman threw for 282 yards and three touchdowns, but he will likely split time with QB Sudfeld this week - according to coach Wilson.

Recent history: Ohio State has won 17 straight games over Indiana and they are 11-4-2 ATS over that span (average win margin of 22.2 points per game). The Hoosiers hung with the Buckeyes in Columbus last year, trailing 20-27 heading into the 4th quarter. OSU tallied 346 rush yards with three players recording over 100 yards each.

Trends: Ohio State is 20-6-1 ATS in its last 27 Big Ten road games. OSU is also 12-6 ATS its last 18 road games as a double-digit favorite.

Injury report: Indiana coach Kevin Wilson expects to play both of his top quarterbacks -- Cameron Coffman and Nate Sudfeld -- Saturday. Coffman made his third consecutive start last week against Michigan State and played brilliantly in the first half. Sudfeld has practiced a bit better than Coffman this week and both will see the field.

Nebraska - BYE

UN: Last week at Ohio State: L 38-63

After a strong first quarter against OSU, Nebraska's defense fell apart. The Huskers allowed six consecutive touchdown drives and 371 rush yards. They were killed by the big play as OSU scored six touchdowns of 16 yards or more. QB Taylor Martinez committed four turnovers, including an interception returned for a touchdown. Nebraska still has a shot at the division title, but it will need to fix a lot of problems this off week as it prepares for a key three game stretch against Northwestern, Michigan, and Michigan State.

Injury report: RB Rex Burkhead should be fine for the team's next game at Northwestern, coach Bo Pelini said. Burkhead injured his left knee in the third quarter against Ohio State and didn't return.

Penn State - BYE

PSU: Last week vs. Northwestern: W 39-28

Penn State has bounced back after an 0-2 start to win four straight games. The Lions rallied to beat Northwestern after an 11-point fourth quarter deficit. Quarterback Matt McGloin continues his strong play with two more touchdowns and no picks. He now has 12 touchdowns and just two interceptions this season. The defense has been very opportunistic and seems to get better and better every week. Last week they allowed just 247 yards to one of the better offenses in the Big Ten. They have a ton of momentum heading forward as they prepare for a road game at Iowa on October 20th.

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Re: College Football Week 7 Betting News and Notes

ACC Report - Week 7
By Joe Williams

North Carolina at Miami

The Tar Heels are coming off an impressive home win against Virginia Tech, squaring their ACC record at 1-1. As such, they need this game badly, as the Hurricanes are sitting pretty at 3-0 atop the Coastal Division despite an awful thumping at the hands of Notre Dame last weekend. The Tar Heels are just 1-5 ATS in their past six road games, and 1-6 ATS in their past seven road games against a team with a winning record. On the other side, while the Hurricanes have been absolutely thrashed, failing to come close to covering in two marquee non-conference games against K-State and ND, they are 5-1 ATS in their past six conference games, including a perfect 3-0 ATS mark against ACC foes this season. Remember, though, that the Tar Heels are 5-2-1 ATS in the past eight meetings, and the underdog is 6-1-1 ATS in the past eight battles between the sides. Basically, all of these line trends scream stay away. However, playing the total might make more sense. The over is 5-2 in UNC's past seven games overall, and 4-0 in their past four October contests (including last week). The over is 4-1 in Miami's past five games, and 8-3 in their past 11 conference battles. In addition, the over has cashed in four of the previous five meetings.

Duke at Virginia Tech

The Duke Blue Devils are starting to look for real, or they have just taken advantage of a semi-soft schedule. We'll definitely get a better feel for Duke this weekend against a damaged, yet still dangerous, Virginia Tech team at Lane Stadium in Blacksburg. Duke winning at Virginia Tech looked like a pipe dream earlier in the season, but they legitimately have a shot, especially if QB Sean Renfree (elbow) can get back to 100 percent. The Blue Devils are 4-0 ATS in their past four games since being thumped by Stanford on the road earlier this season. However, while at home Duke has been the play, they are just 1-4 ATS in their past five trips away from Wallace Wade Stadium. However, the Hokies are a dismal 1-4 ATS in their past five conference games, including a pasting at UNC last week. They are just 3-13 ATS in their past 16 games on grass, and 0-3-1 in their past four games against teams with a winning record. Could Duke really go to Virginia Tech and win? If so, they'd become bowl eligible for the first time since appearing in the 1994 Hall of Fame Bowl (now the Outback Bowl) against Wisconsin.

Boston College at Florida State

Poor Boston College. They will be walking into a hornet's nest in Tallahassee Saturday afternoon, facing a very angry Seminoles team that was neutered in Raleigh last Saturday night by N.C. State. The 'Noles blew a 16-0 lead, and fell 17-16 in one of the biggest upsets of this season, likely losing all hope of a national championship in the process. What looked like an almost impenetrable defense early in the season allowed the Wolfpack to march downfield for a late game-winning touchdown, leaving most garnet and gold supporters to wonder what might have been. As for BC, well...they just stink. They are 0-2 on the road this season, including a setback against Army last week. If they were to turn their season around, they needed to win at West Point last weekend. If they couldn't handle Army, one has to think they're going to have a whale of a time trying to stop FSU's skill players. The line is just 27.5, and that could easily be erased by halftime. While BC has a semi-respectable offense, led by QB Chase Rettig, their defense is just poor. FSU should mash them in their bounce-back week. If you're brave enough, BC is 9-4 ATS in their past 13 road games, while FSU is 1-4 ATS in their past five ACC battles. The road team is 6-1 ATS in the past seven battles, and the underdog is 5-1 ATS in the past six meetings. However, I am not touching Boston College with a 20-foot-pole, twice as long as the pole I usually use to avoid teams.

Maryland at Virginia

It's hard to believe Maryland is 3-2 overall on the season, as this team is just not good. But they find a way to win. Overall, though, they're a hard team to figure. They are 2-3 ATS this season, barely scraping by William & Mary, before pasting Temple on the road. They were dropped by UConn at home, then stayed with West Virginia in Morgantown, losing just 31-21. Then, last week, they beat Wake Forest, but failed to cover in a low-scoring affair. They have gone under in two straight, including a very rare under for West Virginia, after a pair of overs earlier. Virginia, on the other hand, isn't hard to figure at all. They're just bad. They have dropped four straight games, including a 42-17 pasting at Duke last week. The Cavaliers are 0-5-1 ATS this season, including five straight non-covers. The over has also connected in three of their past four games. However, the Terps are just 1-4 ATS in their past trips to Charlottesville, and the road team is 4-1 ATS in the past five battles. If you're considering Maryland, those numbers are confusing. It's best to stay away from this one, as it is tough to predict, other than it is almost a certainty bad football will be played. The under might be the play. The total has gone under in four of the past five meetings between these teams. For UVA, the under has connected in 14 of the past 20 games, and is 8-1 in Virginia's past nine home games. For Maryland, the under is 4-0 in their past four road games against teams with a losing record, and 13-6 in their past 19 October games.

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Re: College Football Week 7 Betting News and Notes

Road Warriors
By Marc Lawrence

Deep Six Angle

With the season approaching the mid way point, let’s take one final look at expanding our bankroll with college football teams in Game 6 situations.

Our well-oiled database reports a turning point for 3-2 or better teams that take to the road when playing off one-loss exact. They win and continue with the prospects of donning bowling shirts, or they lose and begin entertaining visions of staying home for the holidays. Thus these become pivotal games on each team’s schedule.
These Game Six travelers, playing off one-loss exact, respond with vigor in the Game Six scenarios going 89-59-2 ATS in all games since 1980.

That’s represents a rock solid 60% wining spread mark.

This week finds qualifying three teams taking to the road, namely Middle Tennessee State, TCU and Tennessee.

Middle Tennessee State at Florida International
TCU at Baylor
Tennessee at Georgia

Better yet, when priced as dogs in competitive situations (+10 or fewer points) they improve to 38-18-1 ATS (68%).

The best role occurs when these same visitors take on a foe sporting a winning record as they improve to 27-10-1 ATS (73%) in these spirited contests.

TCU (+8) and Tennessee (+3) look to be ‘devilish’ sides on this week’s card.

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SEC News and Notes Week 6
By Alatex Sports

South Carolina 35-7 blowout of Georgia may have been the most impressive win of the year in SEC play. The Gamecocks jumped out to a 21-0 lead in under ten minutes of action and the Bulldogs’ only tally came with 1:55 left in the game. Georgia had scored 41 points or more in all five of its games before running into a Gamecocks defense that held them to 224 total yards and seven points. The Bulldogs had also gained 1,127 yards their two previous tilts against Vandy and Tennessee. It was a complete domination by the Gamecocks, who now must go to LSU this week to take on the beaten down Tigers.

If LSU’s offensive performance in their 14-6 loss at Florida was indicative of what will happen this week, the Tigers may not cross the 50-yard line against USC. Florida trailed 6-0 at halftime, but used a solid running game to wear down the LSU defense in the second half. Florida ran the ball on 17 of 18 plays in its consecutive scoring drives bridging the 3rd and 4th quarters. Florida QB Jeff Driskel attempted just 12 passes, competing eight for only 61 yards. The Gator defense dominated the LSU offensive line, holding LSU to 42 yards rushing and 200 total yards on the game.

Another surprising performance came from the Ole Miss Rebels in a 30-27 loss to Texas A&M. Ole Miss looks vastly improved since letting Texas come to Oxford and run all over them for 66 points a few weeks ago. They were outgained just 481-464 by the Aggies and held a 10-point lead early in the 4th quarter. Texas A&M freshman QB Johnny Manziel continues to impress, leading the Aggies on two scoring drives in the 4th quarter to pull out the win. Manziel overcame six turnovers – four of his own – to lead the comeback effort.

Missouri is finding it much tougher than Texas A&M in the SEC, falling to 0-3 in conference play after losing at home to Vanderbilt. Quarterback James Franklin’s health has been a big reason for the Tigers’ struggles, and he left this game in the first quarter after spraining his knee. Freshman backup Corbin Berkstresser was just 9-of-30 in relief and he will be the starter for the next few weeks with Franklin out. The Tigers’ struggles will continue this week with top ranked Alabama coming to Columbia.

Arkansas got off the mat a little bit a 24-7 win over an anemic Auburn offense. Auburn managed just a single touchdown against an Arkansas defense that had been torched for 2,500 yards in its first five games. Arkansas has another good chance for a win this week against a weak Kentucky team, which will once again be without starting QB Maxwell Smith. Kentucky has played three other quarterbacks behind Smith, and none of them have shown any ability to throw the ball. The Cats have somehow scored 31 points in their last two losses to South Carolina and Mississippi State, but have averaged just 224 yards per game in their three games without Smith.

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College Football Betting Preview: USC at Washington
By Rob Veno

USC at Washington
Rob Veno's Recommendation: USC
Saturday, 4 pm PT - FOX
CRIS Opener: USC -13.5 O/U 54
CRIS Current: USC -12 O/U 55
Rob Veno's Power Rating: USC -12.5

Washington head coach Steve Sarkisian taking on USC is always an interesting sidebar. His Huskies upset USC in his first two seasons as double-digit underdogs but last year in that same role, they were clobbered 40-17. UW was outgained in total yardage 426-244 and more importantly they were physically dominated at the point of attack being outrushed 252-46. Even with now graduated star running back Chris Polk, the Huskies could not get anything going on the ground. This season’s ground attack has not proven to be anywhere near the level of last year’s averaging just 3.7 ypc and the same can be said for the passing game which is currently averaging 72 yards less per game than it did in 2011. With their offense exceeding 21 points only one time (52 vs. Portland State), it’s difficult to see them doing much damage against USC’s defense which is regarded as its weakness.

Without much in the way of offensive firepower, a majority of this week’s burden is thrust upon the Huskies defense. Fundamentally they are far better suited to face a pro style attack which USC operates from, but this isn’t a good matchup. Unlike their victory over Stanford where they could focus solely on stopping the run, Washington has to respect USC’s game-breaking type of balance. Last season they chose to emphasize containing USC’s receiver tandem of Robert Woods and Marquise Lee and they did a fantastic job limiting the pair to 79 combined receiving yards. However they paid the price on the ground as running back Curtis McNeal averaged 6.3 per carry en-route to the blowout. McNeal (concussion) is questionable this week but with Silas Redd now added to the backfield, Woods and Lee still out on the perimeter, and USC’s offensive line now back at full strength, I expect another strong performance.

Obviously Husky Stadium will provide a raucous environment and sure there’s always going to be added incentive for Sarkisian in this matchup but this is a pedestrian football team that’s been decimated across the offensive line. The defensive front has been no better, recording four sacks in their last four games (1 every 28.7 pass attempts) and allowing four of their five FBS opponents at least 4.5 yards per rush. The emotion figures to eventually wear off and the sizable talent gap will take control. USC was able to overcome early turnovers and a 14-0 deficit at Utah and I just can’t expect them to put themselves in that large of a hole again.

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16-0 ATS Super System                                                  
By Robbie Gainous

Last week our Cajun Sports Wire NCAA System of the Week recommended a play on the North Carolina Tar Heels minus the points over the Virginia Tech Hokies and the Tar Heels delivered winning and covering with a final score of 48 to 34.

With another week in the books and another college card to be broken down we wondered how teams do when they are on extended ATS win streaks. That led us in several different directions with some success along the way but one situation really stood out.

We made our Play ON team a road underdog of a touchdown or less coming off at least seven straight against the spread victories facing an opponent who was not coming off a conference home underdog straight up win their last time out.

SYSTEM: Play ON a road underdog of less than 7 points with 5+ days off 7 ATS wins vs. an opponent not off a conference home underdog SU win.

After putting those parameters to the test, the database produced a gem of a system that has been perfect since 1990 with twelve straight against the spread victories by an average of 13.1 points per game. These road underdogs have not only covered the spread but also won every game outright by nearly double-digits with an average win by 9.8 points per game.

The system was last active in 2006 before September 15 of this season when Western Kentucky qualified as the play on team plus the points versus Kentucky and won straight up 32 to 31 as a six and half point underdog. The system has been limited over the years with a low occurrence rate but when it qualifies a team, that team cashes both the straight up and against the spread ticket.

For the second time this season, we have a qualifying play and it comes from Saturday's college football action. With all the systems parameters met, Cajun Sports Wire NCAA Football System of the Week qualifies a play ON the Fresno State Bulldogs plus the points over the Boise State Broncos. Play ON Fresno State on Saturday.

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College Football Top 25 Betting Cheat Sheet: Week 7

If you're looking to get some action down but only have a few minutes to handicap, let our Top-25 cheat sheet help you out. We grabbed some quick-hitting betting info on each of the Top 25 matchups with odds available in Week 7 of the season:

(16) Louisville at Pittsburgh (3, 48.5)

Louisville (5-0) is off to its best start since 2006 as it opens Big East play at Pittsburgh. The Cardinals have scored on 22 of their 23 trips into the red zone, a major reason for their impressive start. The Panthers have relied heavily on a defense that has allowed an average of 13.7 points over their last three games and ranks 22nd in the nation in total defense. Louisville has failed to cover in each of its last five meetings with Pittsburgh.

Syracuse at (19) Rutgers (-7, 45)

Rutgers will try for its first 6-0 start since 2006 when it hosts Syracuse. Sophomore RB Jawan Jamison rushed for his sixth straight 100-yard game in a 19-3 victory over Connecticut last week. But the defense is the real story behind the school’s success so far. The Rutgers stop unit ranks 15th in total defense at 296.8 yards per contest, fifth in points allowed (10.8) and second in rushing yards allowed (60.6). The Scarlet Knights have won each of their games by at least nine points and have outscored the opposition 38-3 in the third quarter this season. The under is 4-1 in their last five meetings.

(15) Texas at (10) Oklahoma (-3.5, 60.5)

Texas QB David Ash has 11 touchdowns against only one pick and ranks third nationally in passer efficiency for an offense that has produced an average of 46.8 points per game. This will mark only the third game in five weeks for Oklahoma, which bounced back from its only loss with a strong performance in a 41-20 victory at previously undefeated Texas Tech last week. The under is 5-1 in the Sooners’ last six games overall and the Longhorns have lost seven consecutive games to ranked opponents.

(5) Kansas State at (25) Iowa State (6.5, 49)

The Wildcats are second in the conference and ninth in the nation in rushing offense at 264.8 yards, sparked by RB John Hubert and speedy QB Collin Klein. Iowa State (4-1) is off to its best start since 2002 and cracked the national rankings this week for the first time in 10 years. Defense has ignited the Cyclones’ early season rise. Senior linebacker Jake Knott leads the conference with 32 solo tackles and senior strong safety Durrell Givens has recovered three fumbles in five games. The underdog is 4-1 ATS in their last five meetings.

(14) Oregon State at BYU (-6, 37.5)

Oregon State got dealt a not-so-pleasant surprise when starting QB Sean Mannion discovered he will likely miss 2-to-4 weeks with torn cartilage in his knee despite not missing a snap in last Saturday’s 19-6 home victory over Washington State. Junior Cody Vaz will get his first start since high school Saturday at Brigham Young, which hasn’t surrendered an offensive touchdown in 13 consecutive quarters. The Cougars have played under the total in their last five home games.

(1) Alabama at Missouri (21, 43.5)

Alabama leads the nation in total defense (191.6 yards per game) and scoring defense (7.0 points per game) and will be an even greater challenge for Missouri without starting quarterback James Franklin (knee). Redshirt freshman Corbin Berkstresser will make his second career start in Franklin's place. The Crimson Tide is 6-1 ATS in its last seven road games.

Fresno State at (22) Boise State (-7, 57.5)

Fresno State has lost 10 of its last 11 matchups against Boise State while being outscored 108-7 over the past two games. Boise State hasn’t lost a game in October since 2001, winning 45 straight. The favorite is 11-1 ATS in their last 12 meetings.

(17) Stanford at (7) Notre Dame (-7.5, 44.5)

Notre Dame is 5-0 for the first time since 2002 and has already beaten ranked squads from Michigan State and Michigan this season. The Fighting Irish defense has gone three straight games without allowing a touchdown for the first time since 1980. Stanford senior QB Josh Nunes earned Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Week honors by passing for 360 yards and accounting for five touchdowns (two passing, three rushing) in the win over Arizona last week. Notre Dame has played under the total in its last four games.

(4) West Virginia at Texas Tech (3.5, 77.5)

West Virginia QB Geno Smith showed his mettle against Texas last week as he passed for 268 yards (a season-low) and four touchdowns while being harassed all night by a hostile Longhorns’ defense. The senior has 24 touchdowns and zero interceptions, including 12 TDs in the last two games, and leads the nation in passing efficiency (202.3). The Mountaineers have to outscore opponents because their defense, which switched to a mixture of 3-4 and 4-3 fronts, hasn't stopped anyone this season (allowing 460.0 yards per game).

Boston College at (11) FSU (-27.5, 55.5)

The Seminoles fell from No. 4 to No. 11 in the USA Today Coaches Poll - and saw their national championship aspirations take a serious hit - when they were outscored 17-0 in the second half en route to a stunning 17-16 loss at North Carolina State last week. Despite the loss, Florida State is the only team ranked in the top 10 in eight statistical categories - five on defense. The Seminoles are just 1-4 ATS in their last five conference games.

(6) Florida at Vanderbilt (8.5, 40.5)

No. 6 Florida seeks its 22nd consecutive victory over Vanderbilt when the teams square off in Nashville on Saturday. The Gators upended LSU 14-6 last Saturday and are the only team in the country that hasn’t allowed a single fourth-quarter point this season. Vanderbilt defeated Missouri last week for its first SEC win of the season, but has lost 15 consecutive games against ranked opponents. The road team is 4-0 ATS in their last four meetings.

(23) TCU at Baylor (-9, 68.5)

Suspended QB Casey Pachall will leave Texas Christian for an inpatient rehab facility and will not play again in 2012, coach Gary Patterson announced Tuesday. So redshirt freshman Trevone Boykin will get his second start against Baylor on Saturday. The Bears have won nine straight at home, including last year's 50-48 season-opening victory against TCU. Baylor has one of the nation's most prolific offenses, but is still licking its wounds a bit after allowing 807 yards and 70 points in a loss to West Virginia two weeks ago. The Horned Frogs are 4-1 ATS in their last five meetings.

(9) USC at Washington (12.5, 54.5)

After three straight games with less than 300 yards, Trojans QB Matt Barkley completed nearly 77 percent of his passes for 303 yards in a come-from-behind win at Utah last week. USC RB Curtis McNeal and WR Robert Woods appeared to suffer head injuries against Utah, but are expected to play Saturday. The Trojans are 2-5 ATS in their last seven meetings with Washington.

Fordham at (20) Cincinnati (-40.5)

Bearcats RB George Winn is averaging 111.5 yards per contest to help Cincinnati extend its winning streak to seven games overall. The Bearcats have outscored their opponents 44-6 in the first quarter this season and have won 23 straight non-conference games at home.

(3) South Carolina at (8) LSU (-2.5, 40.5)

The Gamecocks have moved into championship contention because of a vast improvement on the defensive side of the ball as they rank fourth in the nation in points against. The eighth-ranked Tigers have taken a dip due to an offense that has totaled 18 points in its first two conference games. Going up against the Tigers’ second-ranked pass defense, South Carolina will likely look to Heisman candidate Marcus Lattimore. The junior RB has at least one touchdown in every game this season and has rushed over 100 yards in each of the last two contests. The Gamecocks have covered the spread in each of their last five games.

Tennessee at (18) Mississippi State (-2.5, 57)

Tennessee brings its high-powered passing offense on the road to Mississippi State on Saturday night, looking to extend its winning streak against the No. 18 Bulldogs to seven games. The Bulldogs have scored at least 25 points in their first five games, something they’ve never accomplished in the program’s 113-year history. Tennessee has allowed five touchdown runs of more than 50 yards in the last three games. Head coach Derek Dooley will coach from the press box after undergoing hip surgery this week. The Volunteers are 4-0 ATS in their last four meetings.

(21) Texas A&M at (24) Louisiana Tech (7.5, 80.5)

This game, originally scheduled for Aug. 30 but postponed because of Hurricane Isaac, features two of the three teams in the FBS that rank in the top 30 nationally in rushing, passing, total and scoring offense. The Bulldogs, winners of 12 straight regular-season games, matched the 1975 team for the best start in school history with a 58-31 victory over UNLV last week while Texas A&M overcame six turnovers to win 30-27 at Mississippi. Texas A&M is 10-0 all-time against the Bulldogs, but only one of those games has been played in Shreveport. The Aggies are 4-0 ATS in their last four meetings.

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College Football Betting Preview: Tennessee at Mississippi State
By Alatex Sports

Tennessee at Mississippi State 
Brent Crow's Recommendation: Mississippi State
Saturday, 6 pm PT - ESPN2
CRIS Opener: Mississippi State -2.5 O/U 53
CRIS Current: Mississippi State -3 O/U 57
Rob Veno's Power Rating: Mississippi State -4

Through five games, unbeaten Mississippi State has yet to be challenged but gets its biggest test of the season against Tennessee. The Bulldogs have beaten up on some weak teams this year; Kentucky, Auburn, South Alabama, Troy and Jackson State – none of which hold a candle to Tennessee offensively. MSU has forced 15 turnovers while committing just four, but that should be expected given the competition. They have been good but not great on offense, averaging just over 400 ypg despite playing two Sun Belt squads and FCS Jackson State.

The good news for Mississippi State is that Tennessee if far from a defensive juggernaut. The Vols’ offense has done some good things on the year, averaging 37 ppg on 4.72 ypc rushing and 7.09 yards per pass play. However, their defense allows 6.73 ypc, and gave up 631 yards on 79 carries against Florida and Georgia. That does not bode well against the run-based MSU offense, which has also shown an improved passing game with Tyler Russell at quarterback.

I think we will find out a lot about Mississippi State this week. Their lack of quality opponents thus far keeps me from making a full play, but they should be able to get the win. Tennessee will make some plays on offense with the weapons it has, but in the end, its defense against the run should allow Mississippi State to come out on top.

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College Football Betting Preview: TCU at Baylor
By Andrew Lange

TCU at Baylor 
Andrew Lange's Recommendation: Baylor
Saturday, 4 pm - FSN
CRIS Opener: Baylor -6 O/U 66.5
CRIS Current: Baylor -7 O/U 68
Rob Veno's Power Rating: Baylor -4

Teddy Covers mentioned on today's Sportsmemo Podcast that TCU is prime fade material. I agree 100%. There's the suspension of quarterback Casey Pachall and an upcoming schedule that ranks among the toughest in the country (at Baylor, vs. Texas Tech, at Oklahoma State, at West Virginia, vs. Kansas State, at Texas, vs. Oklahoma). Even with Pachall, based on how the Horned Frogs have looked this season, two wins out of the group would be quite the accomplishment.

Some may point to last week's home loss to Iowa State as being a bit unlucky (TCU had five turnovers, and outgained the Cyclones by over 100 yards) but those types of mishaps are going to be more common with a rookie quarterback under center. I also think TCU's defense is overrated and faces a dramatic step up in class this week. If you go back to last year you'll notice that all of the talent lost to the NFL was starting to catch up with the Horned Frogs. They allowed 50 to Baylor, 40 to SMU and 35 to Boise State. Their numbers were based on holding mediocre offenses in check and that is exactly what they've done this season. SMU (this year's version), Kansas, Virginia and Iowa State can hardly be considered explosive. Baylor meanwhile has put up incredible offensive numbers and while TCU is the best defense they'll have faced this season, I expect them to move the football and put points on the board. Note that even with Pachall, TCU failed to top 27 points against Kansas, Virginia and SMU. They'll like need that and some to stay within striking distance of the home side.

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College Football Gambling Preview: Texas vs. Oklahoma
By Ian Cameron

Texas vs. Oklahoma
Ian Cameron's Recommendation: Texas
Saturday, 9 am PT - ABC
CRIS Opener: Oklahoma -3.5 O/U 63
CRIS Current: Oklahoma -3.5 O/U 58.5
Rob Veno's Power Rating: Oklahoma -2.5

The Red River Rivalry gets renewed on Saturday and this time around, Texas has a good chance to snap their two-game losing streak. Two injuries for Texas you will want to keep an eye on are RB Malcolm Brown and LB Jordan Hicks.  Both are listed as questionable at this time. Brown has 245 rushing yards on 40 carries this season and Hicks is the leading tackler on this Longhorns defense.

Texas comes into this game a little bit undervalued after last week’s home loss to West Virginia. The Longhorns have been forced to deal with two potent offenses the last two weeks with Oklahoma State and WVU and are certainly battle tested. Keep in mind the Sooners’ offensive line is still a concern. They’ve had problems at times blocking up front and while last week was an improvement, I consider Texas’ defense to be a step up in class despite the numbers they’ve allowed of late. Prior to facing Texas Tech, Oklahoma had played just one decent opponent and it resulted in a 24-19 home loss to Kansas State.

Oklahoma’s defense has been strong as they rank in the top 20 nationally in three defensive categories but Texas is capable of having success moving the football here. Quarterback David Ash has played very well, completing 77% of his passes and a terrific 11-1 TD-INT ratio. If Brown plays, he’ll provide some much needed balance for Texas.

Texas comes into this game with revenge on its mind after losing to Oklahoma 55-17 in 2011. And even though OU looked strong in last week’s win over Texas Tech, I still feel like this team is overvalued and overrated in the betting markets – especially when asked to face better competition.

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Stanford at Notre Dame: What Bettors Need to Know

Stanford at Notre Dame (-7, 43.5)

Notre Dame’s success is prompting talk of wedging into the national championship picture and the No. 7 Fighting Irish have a chance to take another step in that direction when they host No. 17 Stanford on Saturday. Notre Dame is 5-0 for the first time since 2002, has already beaten ranked squads from Michigan State and Michigan and is coming off a thorough 41-3 flattening of Miami. The Fighting Irish defense has gone three straight games without allowing a touchdown for the first time since 1980. Stanford bounced back from a loss to Washington to notch an overtime victory over Arizona last week. The Cardinal are sixth nationally in defending the run (77.2 yards per game) and physically dominated Notre Dame last season.

LINE: Notre Dame -7, O/U 43.5.

WEATHER: Forecasts are calling for temperatures in the low-60s with a 70 percent chance of thunderstorms at Notre Dame Stadium. Winds will blow out of the south at 13 mph.

ABOUT STANFORD (4-1): Senior quarterback Josh Nunes has shaken off the Andrew Luck comparisons and has thrown for 1,145 yards, eight touchdowns and four interceptions. He earned Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Week honors by passing for 360 yards and accounting for five touchdowns (two passing, three rushing) in the win over Arizona. Senior running back Stepfan Taylor (555 yards) is en route to a third straight 1,000-yard season. Taylor had 142 yards against Arizona for his 16th career 100-yard outing, four shy of the school record held by Toby Gerhart (2006-09). Sophomore receiver Ty Montgomery (18 receptions, 26.6 kickoff return average) will likely miss the contest with a lower body injury. Junior free safety Ed Reynolds has three of Stanford’s eight interceptions.

ABOUT NOTRE DAME (5-0): The Fighting Irish have been superb on defense and have held four of their five opponents to 10 or fewer points. Notre Dame has allowed three touchdowns – fewest nationally – and ranks second in scoring defense (7.8) and 13th in total defense (290.0 yards per game). Senior inside linebacker Manti Te’o has a team-best 48 tackles and five takeaways on three interceptions and two fumble recoveries. Junior cornerback Bennett Jackson also has three interceptions and sophomore defensive end Stephon Tuitt has a team-high six sacks. Sophomore quarterback Everett Golson has passed for 827 yards, three touchdowns and three interceptions.


* Under is 5-1 in the last six meetings at Notre Dame Stadium.
* Stanford is 12-3-1 ATS in its last 16 road games.
* Notre Dame is 4-1 ATS in its last five games overall.
* Notre Dame has played under the total in its last four games overall.


1. Notre Dame leads the series 17-9, but the Cardinal have emerged victorious in each of the last three seasons.

2. Stanford had lost seven straight games at Notre Dame Stadium before posting a 37-10 win in 2010.

3. The Fighting Irish have won 10 straight games when rushing for 200 or more yards.

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South Carolina at LSU: What Bettors Need to Know

South Carolina at LSU (-2.5, 39.5)

South Carolina was as impressive as any team last week, thoroughly dominating Georgia to move into the driver’s seat in the SEC East. The least-impressive team in the SEC may have been LSU, which made sure that coach Steve Spurrier and the third-ranked Gamecocks would not be alone as an undefeated team in the East by getting rolled over at Florida. That loss left South Carolina as the No. 2 team in the SEC, behind reigning national champion Alabama. The Gamecocks have moved into championship contention because of a vast improvement on the defensive side of the ball as they rank fourth in the nation in points against. The eighth-ranked Tigers have taken a dip due to an offense that has totaled 18 points in its first two conference games. LSU tries to bounce back when it hosts South Carolina on Saturday night.

LINE: LSU -2.5, O/U 39.5.

WEATHER: Forecasts are calling for pleasant temperatures in the mid-70s under partly cloudy skies. Winds will be light out of the south.

ABOUT SOUTH CAROLINA (6-0, 4-0 SEC): The Gamecocks are in the middle of the toughest stretch of their schedule, with No. 6 Florida coming up after LSU. South Carolina achieved its lofty ranking by blasting then-No. 5 Georgia 35-7 last Saturday. Spurrier and his staff have built a defense that can compete with the likes of Alabama and LSU, combined with an offense that can control possession. The Gamecocks ran 51 running plays against the Bulldogs and entrusted Connor Shaw with only 10 passes. Going up against the Tigers’ second-ranked pass defense, South Carolina could again lean heavily on Heisman candidate Marcus Lattimore. The junior running back has at least one touchdown in every game this season and has gone over 100 yards in each of the last two contests.

ABOUT LOUISIANA STATE (5-1, 1-1 SEC): Last week’s visit to Florida began a stretch of five straight games against ranked opponents for the Tigers, who do not have a non-conference game left on the schedule. The pre-season hype around Zach Mettenberger and an offense that would open things up in the passing game has cooled considerably over the last few weeks. Mettenberger threw for 158 yards and an interception against Florida, and LSU now sits an even 100th in the nation in average passing yardage with 195.7. The running game had picked up some of the slack in the first five games for the Tigers but managed only 42 yards against the Gators and will be facing a South Carolina rushing defense that ranks 10th in the country. The defense, led by linebacker Kevin Minter, has kept LSU in the top-10. Minter and defensive ends Sam Montgomery and Lavar Edwards have combined for 21 tackles for loss.


* Gamecocks are 7-0 ATS in their last seven games following a win.
* Tigers are 2-5 ATS in their last seven games overall.
* Under is 5-1 in Gamecocks' last six vs. a team with a winning record.
* Under is 5-2 in Tigers’ last seven vs. a team with a winning record.


1. The Gamecocks have won a school-record 10 straight games - the longest current streak in the nation.

2. LSU has dominated the series, going 16-2-1 all-time. The Tigers have won each of the last four meetings and are 10-1 against South Carolina in Baton Rouge.

3. South Carolina has not started 7-0 since 1984, which was the only time the school ever achieved a ranking higher than its current mark.

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South Carolina at LSU
By Brian Edwards

South Carolina announced itself as a legitimate national-title contender last weekend. As for LSU, it lost for the first time and is now in desperation mode as the Gamecocks come to Baton Rouge to face the Tigers on Saturday night.

As of Friday afternoon, most books had LSU (5-1 straight up, 2-4 against the spread) installed as a 2½-point favorite with a total of 39½ for ‘over/under’ wagers. Gamblers can take the Gamecocks to win outright for a plus-125 return (risk $100 to win $125).

South Carolina took Georgia behind the woodshed last Saturday night in Columbia, cruising to a 35-7 win as a one-point home favorite. The 42 combined points stayed ‘under’ the 54½-point total.

Steve Spurrier’s squad raced out to a 21-0 lead midway through the first quarter thanks to a pair of Connor Shaw touchdown passes and a 70-yard punt return for a score by Ace Sanders.

Shaw completed 6-of-10 throws for 162 yards and two TDs without an interception. The junior signal caller also scored on a seven-yard run. Marcus Lattimore posted the third 100-yard game of his career against Georgia, rushing 24 times for 109 yards and one TD.

For the season, Shaw is connecting on 75.7 percent of his passes for 733 yards with a 7/2 touchdown-to-interception ratio. Shaw is first in the SEC in passing efficiency (184.7). He has also rushed for 281 yards, averaging 4.4 yards per carry.

Lattimore has rushed for 549 yards and nine TDs, averaging 4.7 YPC.

South Carolina leads the SEC in sacks with 25. Sophomore defensive end Jadeveon Clowney is second in the SEC in sacks (6 ½) and tackles for losses (11 ½). With Clowney, senior DE Devin Taylor, sophomore DT Kelcy Quarles and junior DE Chaz Sutton, the Gamecocks have one of the nation’s premier defensive lines.

That’s not good news for LSU, which has issues on its offensive line. Starting OT Chris Faulk went down with a season-ending injury a few weeks ago, and now two other starters could be out. Junior OG Josh Williford sustained a concussion last week and is ‘doubtful,’ while OT Alex Hurst left the team earlier this week for personal reasons and is considered ‘questionable.’

Also on the injury front, LSU will most likely be without LB Kwon Alexander, who is ‘doubtful’ with a sprained ankle.

Les Miles’s team had won 18 consecutive regular-season games until Florida won a 14-6 decision over the Tigers as a three-point home underdog. LSU led 6-0 at intermission and it was clear that points were going to be at a premium in the second half.

Florida finally got going offensively behind the between-the-tackles running of senior RB Mike Gillislee, who scored a pair of touchdowns for the Gators. LSU’s offense couldn’t get anything going whatsoever and when it did make a big play, Odell Beckham fumbled inside the red zone when he was stripped by UF safety Matt Elam.

Despite the defeat, everything remains on the table for LSU. In other words, as long as the Tigers take care of their business, they can still win the SEC and probably get into the BCS Championship Game. With that said, another loss most likely eliminates all of the aforementioned goals.

In his first season as a starter, LSU junior QB Zach Mettenberger is completing 61.8 percent of his passes for 1,174 yards with a 6/3 TD-INT ratio.

LSU is led in rushing by sophomore RB Kenny Hilliard, who has 382 yards and six TDs on 58 carries for a 6.6 YPC average. The Tigers are deep in the backfield with Spencer Ware (4.6 YPC) and Michael Ford (5.7 YPC).

During Les Miles’s eight-year tenure, LSU has limped to an 18-28-1 spread record as a home favorite. Meanwhile, the Gamecocks are 12-8-1 against the spread as road underdogs on Steve Spurrier’s watch.

South Carolina hasn’t played in Baton Rouge since 2007 when LSU won a 28-16 decision as a 17 ½-point underdog. In the last head-to-head meeting in 2008, LSU overcame a halftime deficit to capture a 24-17 victory as a 1½-point road ‘chalk.’

The ‘under’ is 3-2 overall for LSU, but the ‘over’ is 2-1 in its three home games that had a total. Totals have been a wash for South Carolina both overall (3-3) and in its road assignments (1-1)

Kickoff is scheduled for 8:00 p.m. Eastern on ESPN.

B.E.’s Bonus Nuggets

Toledo junior QB Terrance Owens is enjoying a sensational year to date. The southpaw has thrown for 1,503 yards with a 9/1 TD-INT ratio. Owens has also rushed for 164 yards and three touchdowns. He’s been the catalyst behind the Rockets’ 5-1 start. They are 15-point favorites Saturday at Eastern Michigan.

La. Tech QB Colby Cameron has 13 TD passes without being intercepted. The Bulldogs take on Texas A&M in Shreveport on Saturday night.

Dating back to 1998, Boise St. owns a 10-1-1 spread record in 12 games as a single-digit home favorite. The Broncos host Fresno St. on Saturday as seven-point favorites.

Nevada QB Cody Fajardo has been downgraded to ‘doubtful’ Saturday at UNLV. Fajardo suffered a lower back injury in last week’s 35-28 home win over Wyoming. He has passed for 1,465 yards and rushed for 521. Fajardo has a 9/3 TD-INT ratio and seven rushing scores.

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Re: College Football Week 7 Betting News and Notes

Pac-12 Report - Week 7
By Joe Williams

Stanford at Notre Dame

The Cardinal and the Irish hook up in South Bend in one of the more anticipated games of the weekend. The brutal schedule for Notre Dame continues, but at least they play at home. That's fine with Stanford, though, as they are 12-3-1 ATS in their past 16 road games, and 9-4 ATS in their past 13 games against teams with a road record. Digging deeper, however, we find Stanford is just 4-9 ATS in their past 13 games aginst Independents. Hmm. Meanwhile, Notre Dame is an impressive 4-1 ATS in their past five games, including a 41-3 blasting of Miami last weekend in Chicago. If you had heard the Notre Dame defense was pretty good, they were right. But we learned that the Irish have a little something going on offensively, too. In this series, there are no skewed trends in favor of one team or another, but the under has cashed in five of the past six meetings. The under is also 17-5 in Notre Dame's past 22 home games, and 5-2 in Stanford's past seven road games.

Southern California at Washington

The Trojans haven't exactly been cover kings this season, hitting the number just once in five games this season. However, they are 5-2 ATS in their past seven against Pac-12 opponents, and 5-2 ATS in their past seven games against teams with a winning record. The Huskies pulled off a signature win at home against Stanford a few weeks ago, but they were unable to carry that momentum to Eugene, losing 52-21 last week. Still, Washington is 2-1 ATS in their past three games, and those two covers came at home. Remember this, the Trojans are 2-5 ATS in their past seven meetings with U-Dub, and 2-5 ATS in their past seven trips to Seattle. The underdog, presumably, without looking, Washington every time, is 5-2 ATS in the past seven battles between these sides.

Oregon State at Brigham Young

This game had the look of a marquee game until last week. The Beavers ended up losing QB Sean Mannion (knee) for at least two to four weeks due to torn cartilage in his knee, meaning QB Cody Vaz will make his first collegiate start. Going up against the vaunted BYU defense, which has allowed 10 total points over their past three games, it is a tall order for Vaz. It's also reason why there is a rare college total under 40 (currently at 37). The Cougs have problems of their own under center, as they lost versatile QB Taysom Hill (knee) to a knee injury last Friday. He is done for the season, and will be replaced, most likely, by former starter QB Riley Nelson. This game has the look of a slog, but under 37 is still a risky proposition. The Beavers are 4-1-1 ATS in their past six games, and the public apparently likes that. However, you have to remember Mannion is out, and this will look like a completely different offense against a stout D. The Cougs are 6-2 ATS in their past eight home games.

Utah at UCLA

The Bruins are a difficult team to figure. They come into this game with a still impressive 4-2 record, but they were punished in Berkeley last week, 43-17. Really, they never win at Cal, but the Bears are not good this year, and the Bruins have looked better. Guess not. Suddenly, UCLA is just 1-2 ATS in their past three games, and they need to get untracked. Utah would seem like the perfect team to pick it up against, but they were spanked by the Utes 31-6 in the last meeting. Utah is 0-2 this season away from Rice-Eccles Stadium, however, so it will be an uphill climb. Utah is just 1-4 ATS in their past five road games against a team with a winning home record, and the Bruins are 5-1 ATS in their past six home games. If you don't have a sour taste in your mouth from past UCLA failures, and can look at this objectively, UCLA looks like the clear-cut play. However, keep in mind UCLA is just 7-16 ATS in their past 23 Pac-12 games, and 3-13 ATS in their past 16 games in the month of October.

California at Washington State

California was a struggling 1-4 club, but they got well last week and whaled on UCLA 43-17. All of a sudden, things are looking up for head coach Jeff Tedford's bunch. This team can run the football with authority, and they could keep things going in the right direction with a win on the Palouse. The Bears are just 3-9 ATS in their past 12 road games, however, although they are an impressive 5-2 ATS in their past seven Pac-12 games. WaZu is 11-3 ATS in their past 14 games in the month of October. They are also 8-3 ATS in their past 11 meetings with Cal. However, the road team is 6-2 ATS in the past eight meetings, so be careful with the line. The over has cashed in five straight home games for Washington State, but the under is 11-4 in Cal's past 15 games. This game is a good idea to stay far away from.

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Re: College Football Week 7 Betting News and Notes

NCAAF Week 7

Have to wonder about quality of Texas’ defense, allowing 31-36-48 points in last three games, with 31 points allowed to Ole Miss the most alarming number; Longhorns lost last two years to Oklahoma (55-17/28-20); 11 of last 14 series games were decided by 10+ points. Sooners have already had two bye weeks- their game in Lubbock last week was fairly easy win, while Texas is playing third tough foe (Okla State/WVa) in a row. Longhorns are 15-17 vs spread as favorites since ’09. Texas covered just twice in last six games as a dog; since ’08, they’re 5-7 vs spread in game following a loss.

Wisconsin won its last six games with Purdue, covering by average of 13 points (average score last four years, 38-9); Badgers bamboozled Purdue 62-17 LY, running ball for 364 yards, passing for 241. Wisconsin is a bully team though, and they’re 0-2 on road this year, losing at both Oregon State/Nebraska by a FG, gaining under 300 TY in both games- they’re 9-15-1 vs spread in last 25 road games. Purdue was held to 17-13 points in its two losses (ND/Michigan); they scored 54-51 in two I-A wins, both vs stiffs- they’re 10-13-1 vs spread at home under Hope. Big Dozen home teams are 6-4 vs spread in league play.

Northwestern won four of last five games with Minnesota, winning 29-28/24-17 in last two visits here; underdogs covered last four series games, four of last five played here. Wildcats were 5-0 until blowing 28-17 4th quarter lead at Penn State last week; have to worry about defense that gave up 41 to Syracuse, 29 to Indiana- they wore down late last week. Northwestern is 2-7-1 in last ten games as a road favorite. Gophers had last week off- they’re 15-19 vs spread in last 34 home games (since ’06, 9-9 as home underdogs), but 2-0 this year- all three of their I-A wins are by 7 or less points (UNLV/WMich/Syracuse).

Louisville is 5-0, but its last three wins are by 5-7-4 points, so not like they’re worldbeaters, having trailed winless Southern Miss at half and being tied at FIU at half; they had last week off, while Pitt was losing Friday night game 14-13 at Syracuse. Cardinals are 10-3 vs spread on road under Strong, 0-2 this year, but both non-covers were as double digit favorites. Panthers are 2-3 with loss to a I-AA team; they won their last four games vs Louisville by average score of 29-9-- favorites covered five of last seven series games. Pitt covered six of last seven tries as a home underdog. Nationwide, home dogs are 22-25 vs spread in league play.

Huge trap/sandwich game for Florida, which has beaten Vanderbilt 21 straight times, but is off huge LSU win, with South Carolina on deck; Gators won last 10 visits here by average of 20 points (55-14/42-14 last two visits), but are 4-6 vs spread in last 10 series games overall. Florida covered 10 of last 14 games as an SEC favorite. Vandy covered last four tries as a home underdog; they upset dysfunctional SEC newbie Missouri last week, but have scored just 12 ppg vs I-A opponents. In its three toughest games, A&M/Tennessee/LSU, Florida outscored them 51-6 in second half, a huge number. SEC home dogs are 4-3 against spread.

Kansas State is 5-0 with win at Oklahoma and 52-13 win over Miami; since ’04, Wildcats are just 3-11 vs spread as road favorites, so interesting trap game for them here, on Iowa state campus where K-State lost last visit as 15-point road favorites five years ago. Wildcats beat ISU last four years since then, but 38-30 was widest margin of victory. Cyclones are 11-9 in last 20 games as home underdogs; they’ve got wins at Iowa/TCU, but took advantage of Frogs’ QB’s suspension last week. Iowa State was outgained by 105 yards in LW’s win, gained just 189 TY in home loss to Texas Tech game before that. Big X home teams are 2-8 vs spread in conference play this year, 1-3 if underdogs.

Auburn is 0-3 in SEC play for first time in 30+ years, running ball for just 72.3 yards/game in conference games; they lost 24-7 at home to a horrible Arkansas team last week, so major problems for Tiger squad that covered only once in last seven away games- they’re 3-10 vs spread in last 13 tries as a road underdog. Auburn won 10 of last 12 games vs Ole Miss, winning last three by average score of 42-25; favorites are 7-4 vs spread in last 11 series games. Rebels allowed 43 ppg in last three games vs BCS-level foes, but went toe-to-toe with A&M last week before losing 30-27. Ole Miss is 11-7 in last 18 games as a home favorite. SEC home favorites are 6-5 against spread.

Favorites covered last ten Fresno-Boise games, with Boise winning last six by average score of 50-18; Bulldogs lost last five visits here (0-5 vs spread) by average score of 51-14, but gap seems to have narrowed little this year, with Fresno revitalized under new coach DeRuyter; they’ve covered six in row as road underdog since last visit here in ’10. Hard to tell lot about Boise since teams they’ve beaten are poor; they led 25-0 at half at improved New Mexico, but had to hang on for 32-29 win. Broncos are 1-7 in last eight games as home favorite, after covering 26 of previous 40. Home teams covered four of first five MWC league games this season.

Bad schedule spot for Stanford here, off wild OT win over league rival Arizona last week (gave up 491 passing yards), with arch-rival Cal on deck (first time in decades game hasn’t been in November). Cardinal won last three games vs Notre Dame, scoring 36.7 ppg, but this Irish team is playing stellar defense, allowing total of 12 points in last three games (Michigan/Mich St/Miami). Since ’03, ND is 16-29-2 vs spread as a home favorite. Stanford, which lost 17-13 at Washington in only previous road game, is 3-7 vs spread in last 10 games as road underdog. Pac-12 road teams are 3-7 vs spread in non-league games, 2-3 if road underdogs.

Tennessee coach Dooley had operation for broken hip earlier this week, will coach from press box; his 3-2 Vols had last week off- they allowed 336-282 rushing yards in losses to Florida (37-20)/Georgia (51-44)- they’re 3-4 as road underdogs under Dooley. Vols won last five games vs Miss State by average score of 37-16, covering four of five (favored in all five), winning 33-21/35-17 here. Bulldogs are 6-4 vs spread in last 10 games as home favorite; they’re 5-0 this year but haven’t played good team yet (Auburn/Troy best two). SEC home favorites are 6-5 vs spread. Big game for Dooley here, with Bama/South Carolina games on deck.

South Carolina pummeled Georgia 35-7 LW, after lackluster effort at Kentucky (down 17-7 at half, won 38-17) week before; Gamecocks lost last four games with LSU by average score of 31-14, but teams haven’t met since 2008. Carolina is allowing just 10.5 ppg; they’re 12-8-1 as road underdogs under Spurrier but have bigger divisional game with Florida (Spurrier’s alma mater) up next. LSU got blanked in second half of 14-6 loss at Florida last week; they haven’t scored TD in last two SEC games (won 12-10 at Auburn, with shaky 36-22 win over I-AA Towson in between). Tigers are 18-27-1 as home favorites under Miles.

West Virginia (+6.5) won 48-45 in Austin LW, despite allowing defensive TD and converting only 3 of 12 on 3rd down; Holgorson returns to one of his old stomping grounds here, with WVa squad that is scoring 54.5 ppg vs I-A opponents. Problem is, they allowed 545 yards to Marshall, 700 to Baylor, so Texas Tech (4-1 after 41-20 home loss to Oklahoma LW) is live home dog (covered six of last eight as home underdog). WVa is 5-7-1 vs spread as road favorite since RichRod left town; this is second consecutive long trip for them, downside of new league. Big X favorites are 6-4 so far this year, 1-1 on road. Last two weeks, WVa was 35-35/27-28 at halftime, so they’re fun to watch.

5-0 Louisiana Tech has covered nine of last 11 games as home underdog; they already have wins at Illinois (52-24), Virginia (44-28), Houston (56-49), now go for home win over BCS squad, in game that was ppd Sept 8, because of hurricane; Bulldogs lost last five games with A&M, losing 48-16 (+19) on road in last meeting in ’10- they’re scoring 53.2 ppg, gaining 598+ TY in three of five games. Aggies came from behind LW to win 30-27 (-13) at Ole Miss, despite turning ball over six times- they ran ball for 290 yards. Since ’08, A&M is 5-6 as road favorite. SEC non-conference favorites are 10-15 vs spread, 4-2 on road. WAC underdogs are 8-6, 2-1 at home.

Other Notes

-- Iowa covered eight of its last ten games with Michigan State.
-- Miami Hurricanes covered only four of last 12 home games.
-- Road team covered seven of last eight Bowling Green-Miami games.
-- UCF is 21-10-1 vs spread in its last 32 home games.

-- Favorite covered seven of last eight Oklahoma State-Kansas games.
-- Army covered six of its last seven home games.
-- Virginia covered five of its last six games with Maryland.
-- Rutgers covered five of its last seven games with Syracuse.

-- Florida is 4-11 vs spread as an ACC home favorite.
-- East Carolina covered its last ten games with Memphis.
-- Road team covered 10 of last 14 Air Force-Wyoming games.
-- Oregon State QB Mannion (knee) isn’t expected to play this week.
-- Alabama covered 12 of its last 17 games as an SEC road favorite.

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Re: College Football Week 7 Betting News and Notes

College Football Value Plays
By: The Linemakers

Each week we look at the biggest differentials between what The Linemakers College Football Power Ratings say a point spread should be and what the actual market price is. A lot of the differences lay within the proper rating of a home-field advantage, but sometimes we have a number that is way off the charts relative to the actual point spread. It doesn’t mean ours is necessarily the right number, but we’re usually closer to being right than wrong.

As sports book directors, we used these ratings to help shade the numbers in our books. We'd be crazy to post our exact thoughts against the market line, but we would shade the numbers to ensure we at least got our first few bets on the desired team. If we thought Michigan State should be -15, but the betting market everywhere else had -8.5, we may open the game -10 or -10.5. We'd eventually get pushed to the market price, but at least we had bets on the side we hoped for.

We simplify this process for you by calculating the biggest differentials each week and relaying to you which teams present the best value. It saves you the work, and gives you a nice tool as you’re finalizing your betting strategies for Saturday.

On the left is the bet number and team that offers the best value relative to the current Vegas line.

114 Michigan State (-8.5) vs. Iowa: We show the game being closer to -15.

116 Miami-Fla (-8) vs. North Carolina: UNC should be favored by only -3.

118 Bowling Green (-7.5) vs. Miami-Ohio: The line should be -12.

126 Virginia (-1) vs. Maryland: We have UVA -6.5.

128 Virginia Tech (-10) vs. Duke: The Hokies should be -16.

134 Rutgers (-7.5) vs. Syracuse: We like Rutgers by 15.

138 Connecticut (-5) vs. Temple: UConn -10.5 is closer to being correct.

142 East Carolina (-17) vs. Memphis: We have ECU -24.5.

150 Northern Illinois (-14) vs. Buffalo: NIU -18.5 is the better number.

155 Auburn (+6) at Mississippi: We have Ole Miss only a half-point better.

162 Boise State (-7.5) vs. Fresno State: We made the line Broncos -13.

164 Washington (+13) vs. USC: The Trojans should be only -8.

168 Missouri (+21) vs. Alabama: Alabama -13.5 is the more accurate spread.

186 Central Florida (-17) vs. Southern Miss: We made the game -21.

194 Rice (-2.5) vs. Texas-San Antonio: The Owls should be -9

197 Colorado Sate (+22.5) at San Diego State: Aztecs by only 17.5.

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