Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday, October 24

Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday, October 24

DUNKEL INDEX

NFL

Carolina at Tampa Bay
The Panthers look to build on their 5-1 ATS record in their last 6 games versus a team with a losing record. Carolina is the pick (-6) according to Dunkel, which has the Panthers favored by 9. Dunkel Pick: Carolina (-6)

Game 103-104: Carolina at Tampa Bay (8:25 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Carolina 135.650; Tampa Bay 126.552
Dunkel Line: Carolina by 9; 37
Vegas Line: Carolina by 6; 40 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Carolina (-6); Under

NCAAF

Kentucky at Mississippi State
The Wildcats look to take advantage of a Mississippi State team that is 1-7 ATS in its last 8 Thursday games. Kentucky is the pick (+10 1/2) according to Dunkel, which has the Bulldogs favored by only 7. Dunkel Pick: Kentucky (+10 1/2)

Game 105-106: Kentucky at Mississippi State (7:30 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Kentucky 83.828; Mississippi State 90.723
Dunkel Line: Mississippi State by 7; 52
Vegas Line: Mississippi State by 10 1/2; 56
Dunkel Pick: Kentucky (+10 1/2); Under

Game 107-108: Marshall at Middle Tennessee State (7:30 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Marshall 83.989; Middle Tennessee State 73.364
Dunkel Line: Marshall by 10 1/2; 53
Vegas Line: Marshall by 8 1/2; 56 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Marshall (-8 1/2); Under

MLB

St. Louis at Boston
The Cardinals look to bounce back from last night's 8-1 loss in the opener and build on their 5-0 record in Michael Wacha's last 5 starts against a team with a winning record. St. Louis is the pick (+105) according to Dunkel, which has the Cardinals favored by 1. Dunkel Pick: St. Louis (+105)

Game 953-954: St. Louis at Boston (8:07 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: St. Louis (Wacha) 17.246; Boston (Lackey) 16.444
Dunkel Line: St. Louis by 1; 6
Vegas Line: Boston (-125); 7
Dunkel Pick: St. Louis (+105); Under

NHL

San Jose at Boston
The Sharks look to build on their 4-0 record in their last 4 games in Boston. San Jose is the pick (+100) according to Dunkel, which has the Sharks favored by 1. Dunkel Pick: San Jose (+100)

Game 51-52: San Jose at Boston (7:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: San Jose 12.932; Boston 12.121
Dunkel Line & Total: San Jose by 1; 6
Vegas Line & Total: Boston (-120); 5
Dunkel Pick: San Jose (+100); Over

Game 53-54: Vancouver at New Jersey (7:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Vancouver 12.089; New Jersey 10.413
Dunkel Line & Total: Vancouver by 1 1/2; 4
Vegas Line & Total: Vancouver (-125); 5
Dunkel Pick: Vancouver (-125); Under

Game 55-56: NY Rangers at Philadelphia (7:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: NY Rangers 11.440; Philadelphia 9.901
Dunkel Line & Total: NY Rangers by 1 1/2; 5
Vegas Line & Total: No Line
Dunkel Pick: N/A

Game 57-58: Anaheim at Montreal (7:30 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Anaheim 11.725; Montreal 11.149
Dunkel Line & Total: Anaheim by 1/2; 6
Vegas Line & Total: Montreal (-130); 5 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Montreal (+110); Over

Game 59-60: Chicago at Tampa Bay (7:30 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Chicago 12.447; Tampa Bay 10.863
Dunkel Line & Total: Chicago by 1 1/2; 5
Vegas Line & Total: Chicago (-135); 5 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Chicago (-135); Under

Game 61-62: Winnipeg at Nashville (8:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Winnipeg 11.697; Nashville 10.755
Dunkel Line & Total: Winnipeg by 1; 6
Vegas Line & Total: Nashville (-140); 5
Dunkel Pick: Winnipeg (+120); Over

Game 63-64: Carolina at Minnesota (8:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Carolina 12.313; Minnesota 11.265
Dunkel Line & Total: Carolina by 1; 6
Vegas Line & Total: Minnesota (-165); 5
Dunkel Pick: Carolina (+145); Over

Game 65-66: Calgary at Dallas (8:30 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Calgary 10.328; Dallas 11.857
Dunkel Line & Total: Dallas by 1 1/2; 5
Vegas Line & Total: Dallas (-175); 5 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Dallas (-175); Under

Game 67-68: Washington at Edmonton (9:30 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Washington 12.648; Edmonton 11.382
Dunkel Line & Total: Washington by 1 1/2; 5
Vegas Line & Total: Washington (-125); 5 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Washington (-125); Under

Game 69-70: Phoenix at Los Angeles (10:30 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Phoenix 12.122; Los Angeles 11.338
Dunkel Line & Total: Phoenix by 1; 6
Vegas Line & Total: Los Angeles (-155); 5
Dunkel Pick: Phoenix (+135); Over

CFL

Winnipeg at Toronto
The Argonauts look to take advantage of a Winnipeg team that is 1-4 ATS in its last 5 road games. Toronto is the pick (-10 1/2) according to Dunkel, which has the Argonauts favored by 18. Dunkel Pick: Toronto (-10 1/2)

Game 291-292: Winnipeg at Toronto (7:30 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Winnipeg 98.064; Toronto 115.990
Dunkel Line: Toronto by 18; 50
Vegas Line: Toronto by 10 1/2; 53
Dunkel Pick: Toronto (-10 1/2); Under

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday, October 24

Jim Feist

Kentucky vs. Mississippi St
Play: Under 56

Kentucky is winless in the SEC because of a tough schedule and a struggling offense, scoring 13, 7, 28 and 7 points the last four games. They are 92nd in the nation in passing, 85th in rushing. Kentucky is on a 7-3 run under the total and they take on a fine Mississippi State defense allowing 23 ppg. The under is 26-10 in the Bulldogs last 36 vs. a team with a losing record. And when these teams met last year it was a 27-14 Mississippi State win as Kentucky had just 228 total yards. Play Kentucky/Mississippi State under the total.

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Daniel Curry Index

DCI Rankings

Conference USA
Marshall 33.5 at MIDDLE TENNESSEE 25.4, 7:30 pm ET

Southeastern Conference
Kentucky 18.0 at MISSISSIPPI STATE 30.6, 7:30 pm ET

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday, October 24

Jim Feist

Kentucky vs. Mississippi St
Play: Under 56

Kentucky is winless in the SEC because of a tough schedule and
a struggling offense, scoring 13, 7, 28 and 7 points the last
four games. They are 92nd in the nation in passing, 85th in
rushing. Kentucky is on a 7-3 run under the total and they take
on a fine Mississippi State defense allowing 23 ppg. The under
is 26-10 in the Bulldogs last 36 vs. a team with a losing record.
And when these teams met last year it was a 27-14 Mississippi
State win as Kentucky had just 228 total yards. Play
Kentucky/Mississippi State under the total.


=========================================


Game 105-106: Kentucky at Mississippi State (7:30 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Kentucky 83.828; Mississippi State 90.723
Dunkel Line: Mississippi State by 7; 52
Vegas Line: Mississippi State by 10 1/2; 56
Dunkel Pick: Kentucky (+10 1/2); Under


==========================================


Daniel Curry Index

DCI Rankings

Conference USA
Marshall 33.5 at MIDDLE TENNESSEE 25.4, 7:30 pm ET

Southeastern Conference
Kentucky 18.0 at MISSISSIPPI STATE 30.6, 7:30 pm ET

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday, October 24

Doug Upstone

San Jose Sharks vs. Boston Bruins    
Play: San Jose Sharks -104

San Jose is 8-1 on the year and scoring nearly 4.5 goals a game so far in the 2013 campaign. Boston is hurt a bit by having to play in Buffalo Wednesday night and might be not as sharp as the well rested Sharks. Play San Jose in Boston Thursday night. I like the over 5 goals if you are looking for a total.

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Joe Gavazzi

Mississippi St. -10

Kentucky making slow strides in the first year under HC Stoops. The offense has perked up a bit but the defense is still a disaster allowing 213/5.1 overland and 224 through the air. Two weeks ago, they were battered mercilessly by Alabama 48-7. Playing in the rugged SEC-West, 5th year Miss St. HC Mullen is fully aware that victories such as this must not slip through his fingers if there is any hope for the post season. With a 3-3 SU ATS mark, such is the case in this ESPN Thursday nighter. That statement is supported by the fact that Miss State is 9-3 ATS as home chalk of late and 4-0 SU ATS in this series including 28-16 in Lexington last year. QB Prescott and RB Perkins lead a 200 Club offense that should have their way with the porous Wildcat defense.

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Rob Vinciletti

Marshall vs. Middle Tenn St
Play: Marshall -8

Marshall has solid edges on both sides of the ball. They are 115 yards better on offense and 150+ yards better on defense where they are ranked 14th in the country compared to Middle Tennessee at 86th. Marshall has won and cover the last 3 off a bye week. Middle Tenn. is 1-6 ats as a home dog, 2-5 ats vs winning teams and has failed to cover 10 of the last 11 in week day games. They are 0-6 ats if they have lost 4 of their last 5. Coach Stockstill has a mediocre 4-15 spread record off a conference loss. Marshall has won 10 of the last 11 vs losing teams and suddenly this line starts to look alot more manageable. Make it Marshall tonight.

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Carlos Salazar

Tampa Bay vs. Carolina
Play: Tampa Bay

Carolina has been a very up and down team all season and Carlos sees them down tonight in Tampa. Even with the loss of Doug Martin Tampa should still be able to get the offense going. The Carolina Panthers have benefited from playing St. Louis and Minnesota and will get more of a challenge from the Buccaneers tonight.

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Dave Cokin

Anaheim at Montreal
Play: Anaheim  +105

Anaheim continues its road trip tonight with a stop in Montreal. The Ducks finally lost a game last time out, but they might not have to wait long to get right back into the win column.

Normally, I’m not thrilled about taking a team in its next game following the conclusion of a lengthy winning streak. But it looked to me like the Ducks went into a bit of coast mode in the game at Toronto after jumping out to a lead, and this was also a game where the bounces just seemed to be favoring the Maple Leafs. I like the rebound scenario here for what appears to be a pretty solid NHL team.

The Canadiens are not sharp right now. Since returning home from a successful Western Canada road swing, the Habs were fortunate to get past Columbus after blowing a big lead, and they’ve subsequently dropped two straight to Nashville and Edmonton. The blue line play for Montreal has been subpar, and injuries to Max Pacioretty and underrated Brandon Prust are also an issue.

Anything else written here is extraneous chatter. I think Anaheim has a good chance to win this hookup and grabbing even a small plus sign is enough to get me on the Ducks money line.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday, October 24

Matt Fargo

Winnipeg Jets vs. Nashville Predators    
Play: Nashville Predators -138

We played against Nashville in its last game and it lost in Minnesota 2-0 on Tuesday. The main reason for that was that the Predators had won their previous two games, both on the road, and it was also their fourth game in five nights and they clearly were not ready after getting shutout. Now Nashville heads back home where it has been dominant for years including a 3-1-1 record this season. The Predators had won three of four at home before losing in a shootout against the Kings in their most recent home game. I expect a bounceback tonight at a decent price on top of it. Winnipeg is riding a two-game losing skid and is coming off a six-game homestand where it went 2-3-1. The Jets opened the season with two straight wins but they have fallen back by going 2-5-1 over their last eight games and while they are 1-1 on the road, having not played on the highway in two weeks is a big disadvantage. Nashville put up only 16 shots in its last game against the Wild so that is going to improve and the defense has a solid edge here as well. Winnipeg is 0-14 on the power play over the last five games and ending that shutout string will not be easy against the Predators as they have not allowed a power play goal in six consecutive games, going 18-18 in those games. The Predators are 4-0 in their last four games after scoring two goals or less in their previous game while going 15-3 in their last 18 games after scoring one goal or less in their previous game.

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Jimmy Boyd

Panthers/Bucs Over 40

The Panthers offense appears to be back on track after scoring 30 or more points in each of their last two games. The defense is extremely overrated, and they have not played well on the road this season. In road games they are allowing over 100 rushing yards per game, and the secondary has given up a 70.3% completion percentage to opposing quarterbacks.

The Buccaneers offense should get a bit of a confidence boost tonight. They have played back-to-back games scoring 20 points or more. The defense has allowed 22 points per game overall this season. The way these teams matchup indicates this game should be a shootout. Tampa Bay has struggled to complete passes, but they face a very soft secondary. The over is 5-0 in Carolina's last five games against NFC South opponents, and it is 4-1 in the last five head-to-head meetings between these teams.

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Bill Biles

Mississippi State -10

Kentucky has lost 13 in a row on the road in SEC match ups. If Mississippi St wants a 4th straight bowl game this game is a must win. The home crowd should give them a boost and get the victory.

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Steve Janus

St Louis Cardinals +110

I'm taking the 22-year-old rookie from St. Louis to get the Cardinals back in the series with a win in Game 2. Michael Wacha has been nearly unhittable of late, he flirted with a no-hitter in back-to-back starts and is 3-0 with a 0.43 ERA and 0.571 WHIP in his 3 playoff appearances. The only run he's allowed in the postseason is a solo home run to Pedro Alvarez. The pressure simply doesn't get to this kid.

I'll take my chances on the youngster against John Lackey, who has been hit or miss in his two playoff starts. Lackey three 6 and 2/3 shutout innings in his last start at Detroit, but at home against the Rays he allowed 4 runs on 7 hits and 3 walks in 5 and 1/3 innings of work. St Louis had 7 fewer runs in Game 1, but they finished with just one fewer hit. I look for the Cardinals offense to come to life against Lackey. St Louis went 82-44 against right-handed starters with a .272 average and 5.1 runs/game.

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SPORTS WAGERS

Kentucky +10½ over MISSISSIPPI ST

Kentucky can’t win a football game and seemingly get blown out every week. The Wildcats now stand at 1-5 on the year and most of their offensive and defensive rankings are not very pretty. However, a close look reveals that Mark Stoop’s Wildcats have played the toughest schedule in all of Division I football over the past month with games against #7 Louisville, #20 Florida, #13 South Carolina and most recently against #1 Alabama. Alabama games are always televised nationally and the Tide’s 48-7 win over Kentucky resonates loudly with a lot of Kentucky faders this week. But after three successive games against three nationally ranked opponents, what chance did the Wildcats have of staying close to ‘Bama? Kentucky has now had 12 days rest after a slew of tough games. The Wildcats poor stats have been largely skewed due to their difficult schedule. Kentucky played Louisville tough, they played the Gamecocks tough and outside of about a 12-minute span against the Gators, they played nose-to-nose with that school as well. Kentucky is not among the SEC elite and they still have a long way to go under Stoops but they’ve made big progress, they are getting better every week and they are surely not taking a step down in class when facing Mississippi State.

The Bulldogs are not exactly setting the world on fire with a 3-3 record and that includes a 59-26 loss to LSU. How a power-conference school allows LSU to hang a 59 on them is troubling. MSU also lost to Auburn by four points, 24-20 and to Oklahoma State 21-3. We’re still not impressed. The Bulldogs do get some healthy bodies back this week but this squad has been too erratic and too inconsistent the entire season to get our endorsement in this big-time rivalry game on ESPN’s Thursday Night game of the week. The points are generous enough and they provide us with plenty of room for both an easy cover and a backdoor cover. Overlay.     

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SPORTS WAGERS

PHILADELPHIA -½ over N.Y. Rangers

Regulation only. The line on this game is not out yet but we’re on the Flyers and will post the number as soon as it comes out. Philadelphia has been sitting around for six days in a rather foul mood after winning just one of its first eight games. They have not played since last Thursday when they went toe-to-toe with the Penguins in a 4-1 loss. Philly’s last four games have come against Pittsburgh, Vancouver, Detroit and Phoenix. They also played Carolina, Montreal and Toronto earlier in the year. All of those teams are above .500 and the Flyers could have easily won many of them with a couple of bounces. This is a team that’s loaded with talent that is not going to keep losing at this ridiculous pace. They are also not going to be held to such low scoring numbers much longer because of all that talent up front that includes rookie Tye McGinn, who has a real touch around the net. The Flyers have been sticking with Steve Mason in net as oppose to switching back and forth and that’s another thing we like about Craig Berube. He’s likely told Mason that he’s the #1 goaltender and Mason really is looking better each game. The Flyers are high on our radar. They are the league’s most undervalued team right now because of their one win in eight games but we’re suggesting that this is a playoff caliber team that is going to return great profits over the next little while.

The Rangers also have one win but the difference is that New York is getting blown away on most nights and were even whacked in New Jersey by the previously winless Devils. The Rangers will also play their ninth straight road game to open the year and they have to feeling exhausted. Lastly, New York is going with rookie Cameron Talbot in net over Henrik Lundqvist, who joins numerous other key players on the shelf. The Rangers are a mess right now and could not hav picked a worse time to face the hungry Flyers.


Carolina +148 over MINNESOTA

If we’re playing value on a daily basis then the Hurricanes are an automatic play here. Minnesota has scored two goals or less in seven of its past eight games and that’s because they have one line that can produce consistently. This is a Wild team that might possess the NHL’s best group of d-Men and that makes them tough to score upon but that type of team offers up much more value as a dog than a favorite. The Wild have not hosted a game against Carolina since 2010. They have played them once in Carolina since then. Minnesota has back-to-back games on deck against Chicago, making this a vulnerable spot for them.

The ‘Canes continue to quietly roll along with two wins in a row and picking up points in five of their last six games. On the road, the ‘Canes have won three of four with only loss occurring at Pittsburgh. Carolina is creating tons of scoring chances and continues to be beasts to play against. As a pooch of this size in a good spot on the road, Carolina is once again underpriced.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday, October 24

Jeff Scott Sports

3 UNIT PLAY

MISSISSIPPI STATE -10 over Kentucky: The Kentucky Wildcats are the worst team in the SEC and just won't stay in this game for too long. The Cats started the year losing by 9 points to WKU and then blew out Miami-oh 41-7, but since then they have gone 0-4 and have lost each game by 13+ points. The offense has been horrid in SEC play, averaging just 214.7 ypg and 14 ppg vs their SEC brethren. That just won't be nearly enough points vs a Bulldog squad that has averaged 499.3 ypg and 40 ppg, while allowing just 324 ypg and 23.3 ppg on their home field this year. on Defense the Cats have allowed 507.7 ypg and 35.7 ppg in SEC plays, while also allowing 470 ypg and 35 ppg on the road this year. The Bulldogs are 4-0 the last 4 in the series and have won the last 2 vs Kentucky by 12 an 13 points, plus we note that the SU winner has covered the last 11 in this series. I say MSU by at least 17 in this one.

2 UNIT PLAY

Marshall/ MTSU Under 57: I know that MTSU has a bad defense and that Marshall can score allot, but really that's were the bulk of the points will come from. The Thundering Herd come in with a top tot 10 defense, both overall and vs the pass, while they have allowed just 18.3 ppg, which is 14th nationally. Just one team here has a chance to put up any real points in this game and that is Marshall, but still it won't be enough to put this game over the total. Marshall 28-20.

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Mid-Major Matt

Kentucky vs Mississippi St
Pick: Under

SEC football takes centerstage on Thursday night as Mississippi State hosts Kentucky. The Bulldogs are 3-4 on the season and are wrapping up a four game homestand. This is an offense that has failed to put up 20 points or more just once this season although they have not faced too many stout defenses. This is a run first team who averages 214 yards per game which is good for fourth in the SEC. Kentucky's numbers against the run aren't very good, but they can stack the box against it since MSU's passing game isn't anything to write home about. Their two best aerial performances came against Troy and Alcorn State who aren't exactly stout. On the opposite side you've got a UK offense that has scored just 55 points in their last four games and it's coincidentally coming when the competition is ramping up. Louisville, Florida, South Carolina and Alabama held the Wildcats passing attack down. These two have played seven unders in their last 12 meetings. Last year MSU won 27-14 in Kentucky going under the 48.5 point total. Miss State has South Carolina, Texas A&M and Alabama up next so they will want to get a nice lead and then coast to victory. We'll take the under in Thursday night SEC football.

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Big Kat Sports

Carolina Hurricanes  vs Minnesota Wild
Pick: Carolina Hurricanes +140

We're taking a shot with a pretty nicely priced underdog with our Free Play tonight as the Carolina Hurricanes travel to take on the Minnesota Wild tonight at the Xcel Energy Center in Minneapolis. The Canes have won their last three games on the road and now will enter their "Western" part of their 4 game road swing after wins over the Islanders and Leafs to start the trip. They have yet to beat a team from the Western Conference this season but they have been competitive, losing once in OT and twice in a shoot-out so far this year. The Wild have been excellent at home, posting a 3-0-2 record and come into the game off a 2-0 win over Nashville on Tuesday night. Cam Ward, who has played better than his 2-2-3 record would lead you to believe is expected to get the start in goal tonight while the Wild are still undecided as to who will be between the pipes. Josh Harding has filled in for an injured Niklas Backstrom, who has been out since 10/5 with a knee injury but Backstrom has returned to full practices and could be back in goal as soon as tonight. Either way it doesn't matter all that much as he posted a 0-0-2 record with a 3.40 GAA in his 2 starts before getting injured and while he has played well in a fill-in role this season, Harding is a career back-up. Pair that with the fact that the Hurricanes have taken 4 straight head to head meetings between these two teams and we'll tab them at the plus price to get the win as our Thursday Free Play.

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Alex Smith Sports

Chicago Blackhawks vs Tampa Bay Lightning
Pick: Tampa Bay Lightning

Tampa Bay Lighting host The Chicago Blackhawks on Thursday Night. TB beat the Hawks earlier this year in a shootout on October 5th. Chicago hasn't won in Tampa since 2009, and with the Bolts on a 5-2 clip and the Blackhawks losing leads lately, I'll side with the short 'dog in this contest.

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Jack Jones

Mississippi State -10½

The Mississippi State Bulldogs have certainly been the better team in 2013. Their three losses have come against the likes of LSU, Auburn and Oklahoma State, which are three of the better teams in the country. They were right there with LSU early in the fourth quarter before a 26-31 deficit turned into a 26-59 blowout as they simply unraveled in the final period. They’ll certainly be hungry for their first conference win Thursday with lowly Kentucky coming to town.

The Wildcats have rarely been competitive this season en route to a 1-5 start. All five of their losses have come by seven points or more, including three by 14 or more. They were just embarrassed last time out in a 7-48 home loss to Alabama, getting outgained 170-668 for the game. Kentucky ranks 100th in the country in total offense at 352.3 yards per game, and 91st in total defense at 437.3 yards per game.

Mississippi State has been solid on both sides of the football. It ranks 35th in total offense at 457.5 yards per game, and 34th in total defense at 364.5 yards per game. The 1-2 punch of Dak Prescott and Tyler Russell at quarterback has been impressive. Prescott has thrown for 890 yards and three touchdowns to three interceptions, while also rushing for a team-high 457 yards and eight scores. Russell is completing 70.1 percent of his passes for 381 yards with two touchdowns and one pick.

The Bulldogs should be able to run all over a Kentucky stop unit that ranks 102nd in the country against the run, giving up 213.3 yards per game and 5.1 per carry on the ground. Mississippi State ranks 23rd in rushing offense at 214.3 yards per game and 5.1 per carry. Kentucky is 12-26 against the spread in its last 38 games versus good rushing teams that average 4.75 or more yards per carry. The Wildcats are 2-11 against the spread in their last 13 games as an underdog. The Wildcats are 3-13 against the number in their last 16 road games. The Bulldogs are 11-5 against the spread in their last 16 home games. Bet Mississippi State Thursday.

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