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College Football Betting News and Notes Thursday, October 17

College Football Betting News and Notes Thursday, October 17

MIAMI (5 - 0) at N CAROLINA (1 - 4) - 10/17/2013, 7:30 PM

Top Trends for this game.
MIAMI is 13-4 ATS (+8.6 Units) in all games over the last 2 seasons.
MIAMI is 13-4 ATS (+8.6 Units) in all lined games over the last 2 seasons.
MIAMI is 9-0 ATS (+9.0 Units) against conference opponents over the last 2 seasons.
MIAMI is 11-3 ATS (+7.7 Units) after playing a conference game over the last 3 seasons.
MIAMI is 12-3 ATS (+8.7 Units) in games played on a grass field over the last 2 seasons.

Head-to-Head Series History
MIAMI is 2-0 against the spread versus N CAROLINA over the last 3 seasons
N CAROLINA is 1-1 straight up against MIAMI over the last 3 seasons
1 of 2 games in this series have gone OVER THE TOTAL over the last 3 seasons

The total has gone OVER in 4 of Miami's last 6 games
Miami is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games
North Carolina is 9-2 SU in its last 11 games at home
North Carolina is 1-4 SU in its last 5 games

Miami Florida at North Carolina
Miami Florida: 9-0 ATS against conference opponents
North Carolina: 1-8 ATS after allowing 75 or less rushing yards last game

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Re: College Football Betting News and Notes Thursday, October 17

Miami at North Carolina
By Joe Nelson

This week's Thursday night ESPN game features an intriguing ACC game between Miami and North Carolina, two teams that have had polar opposite starts to the season despite both teams being tied for the 2012 ACC Coastal Division title. Due to NCAA infractions, Miami and North Carolina conceded the ACC title game spot to Georgia Tech and it was expected to be a very competitive race again this season, although Virginia Tech has stormed out to a 3-0 start to lead in the early going. Take a look at tonight's key game that will have a big impact on the ACC picture.

Match-up: Miami Hurricanes at North Carolina Tar Heels
Venue: Kenan Memorial Stadium, Chapel Hill, North Carolina (grass)
Date: Thursday, October 17, 2013
Time/TV: 7:30 PM ET, ESPN
Line: Miami -8½, Over/Under 63½
Last Meeting: 2012 at Miami, North Carolina (-7½) 18-14

North Carolina opened the college football season on national television against South Carolina and the Tar Heels were a popular upset pick in that game. It did not work out, but after a solid win over Middle Tennessee State, season goals in the ACC season were still in place. The Tar Heels faced a tough set of three games surrounded by bye weeks that figured to define the season. While sweeping those three games would have been difficult, few expected North Carolina would emerge entering this week at 1-4 on the season with three straight losses, already featuring as many losses as all of last season.

This is the second season for the Tar Heels led by former Southern Mississippi head coach Larry Fedora and while it has been a discouraging start, the schedule the rest of the way is promising and if they can win at home against favored Miami, a 7-0 finish to the season would not be impossible as the Tar Heels will possibly be favored in every remaining game or at worst playing as just a small underdog in one or two games. At this point, that seems unlikely given that the North Carolina defense has allowed 436 yards per game this season and the offense has produced almost 100 fewer yards and more than 14 fewer points per game so far compared with last season's numbers.

Starting quarterback Bryn Renner is one of the more accomplished quarterbacks in the ACC, now in his third season as the starter after passing for over 3,000 yards each of the last two seasons. He was injured in the 55-31 loss to East Carolina and he sat out the most recent loss to Virginia Tech. His numbers are down this season with less than 60 percent completions, but for his career he has 60 touchdowns and just 23 interceptions. The schedule has not been easy with three strong major conference defenses and an East Carolina squad that has looked greatly improved defensively at this point in the season. North Carolina actually out-gained Virginia Tech in the 27-17 loss two weeks ago with back-up quarterback Marquise Williams and this offense still has the potential to be very productive.
While North Carolina has struggled, Miami is one of the few remaining undefeated teams. While the Florida State/Clemson game this week will get all the attention for the ACC, the Hurricanes have quietly climbed into the top 10 in the AP Poll and should be in the top 15 of the BCS rankings when they come out. Miami has home wins over Florida and Georgia Tech, but this will be just the second road game of the season and the schedule will stiffen significantly in November for the Hurricanes, including playing Florida State and Virginia Tech in back-to-back weeks. While the Hurricanes appear to have all the pieces to put together a great season, there are certainly some doubts for a program that has lost at least five games six of the last seven seasons.

Most suspicious on the resume is the biggest win, a 21-16 win at home over Florida. The Gators had a nearly 2:1 edge in total yardage in the game as Miami rushed for just 50 yards and had just 212 total yards for the game with only 10 first downs. Florida has an excellent defense, but it was not an inspiring performance as the defense also had issues containing a Florida offense that has struggled in most games. Miami only had one drive longer than 50 yards in the game and just three drives longer than four yards, punting nine times in the game and going backwards on five separate possessions. Miami also allowed over 400 yards against Georgia Tech, able to overcome an early deficit with a few big plays. Miami took the lead in the third quarter with a 69-yard pass play and sealed the game with an interception return touchdown as the final 45-30 margin was a bit misleading.

Miami is gaining 7.8 yards per play on offense this season, the seventh-best mark in college football and the Hurricanes are 12th best in yards per play on defense at 4.5 yards per play as the statistics are attractive for Miami in the 5-0 start. Dominant wins over Florida Atlantic, Savannah State, and South Florida skew those numbers however as they had yardage edges of more than 250 yards in each of those wins. This is a showcase opportunity for a couple of deep Heisman Trophy sleepers as quarterback Stephen Morris and running back Duke Johnson have had productive starts and if Miami keeps winning they will get more attention. The Miami defense will start to face more significant tests and after the defense allowed 31 points and 486 yards per game last season, it is not clear that the unit has shown as much improvement as the early season numbers suggest.

As the spread on tonight's game suggests these teams are much closer than the records suggest and the last two meetings have been decided by a total of just 10 points combined. Miami is just 6-6 S/U on the road under Al Golden in two plus seasons, but this is a big opportunity to elevate the program further heading into big national games in the coming weeks. For North Carolina, this is an opportunity to turn the season around with a marquee win and with a favorable late-season schedule, making a run to a bowl spot is certainly still a possibility for a Tar Heels program that just can't seem to get over the hump, stuck in the upper-middle of the ACC.

Last Meeting: Led by two touchdowns from Giovani Bernard, the Tar Heels took a 15-7 lead into halftime last season at Miami in the middle of the season. Miami struck first in the third quarter to get within one and the Tar Heels hit a long field goal to go up 18-14 late in the third quarter. Miami moved into North Carolina territory three times in the fourth quarter, but they opted to punt in the first instance, pinning North Carolina on the one-yard line. Miami failed on two fourth down attempts late in the game as the North Carolina defense held on with a scoreless final quarter.

Series History: These teams have played each of the last nine years with North Carolina holding a 5-4 edge both S/U and ATS, although Miami has covered in three in a row. North Carolina is 3-1 ATS at home in the series and 5-2 ATS as an underdog in the series.

Line Movement: The line opened at -8 and has climbed to -8½ at most outlets. The total has climbed from 63 to 63½.

Miami Historical Trends: The Hurricanes are 9-2 ATS in road games in the past two-plus seasons under Golden, including going 3-0 as a road favorite and 7-2 overall the last nine games as a road favorite. Miami is just 23-44 ATS as a favorite of seven or more since 2002, including just 4-6 ATS since Golden took over.

North Carolina Historical Trends: The Tar Heels have covered in five of the last six instances as a home underdog going back to late in the 2006 season and going 12-5-1 ATS in that role going back to 2003. North Carolina has not been a home underdog since the 2010 season however. Under Fedora, North Carolina is 5-3-1 ATS at home with just two S/U losses.

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Re: College Football Betting News and Notes Thursday, October 17

Miami at North Carolina: What Bettors Need to Know

Miami Hurricanes at North Carolina Tar Heels (+9.5, 64.5)

Miami takes its No. 11 ranking and seven-game winning streak to North Carolina for a prime-time ACC matchup with the Tar Heels on Thursday night. North Carolina will have Bryn Renner back under center after he sat out a 27-17 loss at No. 20 Virginia Tech with a foot injury, but the Tar Heels will be hard-pressed to get the air game going against Miami's stiff pass defense. The Tar Heels haven't beaten a ranked team since knocking off No. 24 Florida State in 2010.

The Hurricanes are facing their first big road test and expect a hostile environment under the lights, regardless of North Carolina's early struggles. "We're going to be facing a great challenge and an excellent team on Thursday night," Miami coach Al Golden told reporters. "Records really don't matter. Records are talking about the past. We know what type of team we're going to see." The Tar Heels have won four of the past six meetings, including an 18-14 victory last year in Miami.

LINE: Miami opened as an 8-point favorite and has been bet up to -9.5. The total opened at 63.5 and moved to 64.5.

WEATHER: Temperatures in the mid 60s with a 24 percent chances of rain and winds blow WSW at 4 mph.

ABOUT MIAMI (5-0, 1-0 ACC Coastal, 4-1 ATS): The Hurricanes boast one of the best pass defenses in the nation as they have allowed only two passing touchdowns - the fewest in the country - and have recorded 18 sacks. The offense has been equally impressive recently as Miami has put up 40 or more points in three straight games and looks to make it four straight for the first time since 1987. The Hurricanes have been balanced with Stephen Morris (950 pass yards, nine touchdowns, four interceptions) and Duke Johnson (572 rushing yards, four TDs) leading the way.

ABOUT NORTH CAROLINA (1-4, 0-2, 1-4 ATS): The Tar Heels have struggled on both sides of the ball in coach Larry Fedora's second season, dropping three straight since a 40-20 victory over Middle Tennessee. North Carolina has gained at least 400 total yards in 14 of 17 games under Fedora but only two of five games this season. The offense is still loaded with potential, though, with tight end Eric Ebron (23 catches, 333 yards, two touchdowns) and receiver Quinshad Davis (19 catches, 298 yards, four TDs) giving Renner a pair of terrific targets.


* Over is 4-0 in the last four meetings in North Carolina.
* Underdog is 7-1-1 ATS in their last nine meetings.
* Hurricanes are 19-7 ATS in their last 26 games overall.
* Tar Heels are 1-5 ATS in their last six games overall.


1. Miami is 15-3 all-time in Thursday night games on ESPN while North Carolina is 6-5, including a 27-10 season-opening loss at South Carolina this year.

2. North Carolina has made 189 consecutive extra-point attempts - the second-longest active streak in the nation (Texas Tech, 239) - over a span of 55 games.

3. Morris needs 184 yards to become the sixth 6,000-yard passer in school history and 243 yards to pass Vinny Testaverde (6,058) for fourth on Miami's all-time list.

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Re: College Football Betting News and Notes Thursday, October 17

NCAAF Week 8

Underdogs covered seven of the last nine Miami-North Carolina games; Miami's 30-24 win at North Carolina in 2011 was first win in last four visits to Chapel Hill. Tar Heels are 1-4 with a senior QB; not good; they allowed 37.5 ppg in losing last three games, allowing 603 yards in 55-31 loss to East Carolina in their last home game. Only team they've beaten was 3-4 Middle Tennessee. Miami is one of 14 unbeaten teams left in country; they won only road game 49-21 at South Florida, and gave up 335 rushing yards to Georgia Tech's option game, but they pulled away late for 45-30 win. Miami is 5-4 in its last nine ACC road games, with no wins by more than nine points- last time they won a conference road game by double digits was 28-13 (-18) at Duke in 2010.

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Re: College Football Betting News and Notes Thursday, October 17

UNC looks for ACC upset

MIAMI (FL) HURRICANES (5-0) at NORTH CAROLINA TAR HEELS (1-4) Line & Total: Miami -10 & 64
Opening Line & Total: Hurricanes -9 & 65

ACC teams heading in opposite directions after successful 2012 campaigns will clash on Thursday night when improving Miami visits slumping North Carolina.

The Hurricanes were 7-5 during last year’s campaign, and already have five wins in their first five contests of 2013. They will be traveling to Chapel Hill where they will face a 1-4 Tar Heels team. On the season, the Hurricanes have defeated their opponents by an average of 29.2 points per game and have only been held under 30 points once (Florida) in their past nine games. In each of the past three matchups against North Carolina, Miami has covered and gone 2-1 SU with the loss coming last season in an 18-14 UNC win at Miami.

Tar Heels QB Bryn Renner is expected to return to the team after a foot injury kept him from last week’s 27-17 loss against Virginia Tech. He will be an important factor in this game as North Carolina’s rushing attack ranks 114th in the nation (100.0 YPG). Miami is currently on a seven-game SU winning streak dating back to last season and has covered in 10 of its past 11 games. North Carolina, on the other hand, has failed to cover in five of its past six games, but is an impressive 9-2 SU in its past 11 home games. 

Miami has been firing on all cylinders this season and ranks in the FBS top-10 in both scoring offense (45.2 PPG) and scoring defense (16.0 PPG allowed). The Hurricanes have the ability to rely on either the passing game or running game based on who they are playing since their offense is so balanced with 274.8 passing YPG and 213.8 rushing YPG. QB Stephen Morris had his best game of the season in last week's 45-30 victory over Georgia Tech last week, completing 17-of-22 passes for 324 yards (77.3%) with three touchdowns (but also 2 INT). This brings his season totals to 950 passing yards, nine touchdowns and four interceptions. Morris’ favorite target has been WR Allen Hurns who has an impressive 383 yards on just 20 receptions (19.2 avg.), and had more than 100 receiving yards for the second time this year in last week’s win.

HB Duke Johnson has been the main back for the Hurricanes this year with 84 carries and 572 yards (6.8 YPC) on the season. Johnson has also added four touchdowns, but has not been the main back getting into the end zone. The goal-line carries have gone to HB Dallas Crawford, who despite having only 25 carries on the season, has 7 TD including two in each of his past three games. The Hurricanes' defense has been solid this year, but gave up a season-high 30 points to Georgia Tech last week and 21 points to a horrible South Florida offense the week before.

North Carolina has been very disappointing this season and has only managed one victory, which came against a Middle Tennessee team that is ranked near the bottom of FBS in most major categories. For Thursday, the Heels are lucky to have QB Bryn Renner back after missing last week’s game. Renner has 1,117 passing yards with seven touchdowns and only three interceptions this year, throwing for over 300 yards in two of his four games played. Even though Renner has played well this season, he has been getting no support from his running game.

On the year, the rushing attack has gained only 2.9 YPC as a team and has five touchdowns. Instead of depending on his suspect running game to suddenly explode, Renner will look to the top-ranked NFL tight end prospect in the nation, Eric Ebron, who leads the team in both receptions (23) and receiving yards (333). Even though the Tar Heels have given up an enormous 435.8 total YPG as a defense, they have some very solid players in DE Kareem Martin (34 tackles, 1.5 sacks) and SS Tre Boston (22 tackles, 2 interceptions) who will try to keep the explosive Miami offense in check.

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