Well, in the world of sports betting there are good weeks and bad weeks. Last week was a bad week, a very bad week going 1-6 with these college picks. That’s just how it goes sometimes. You’ll go on winning streaks and losing streaks no matter how good or bad you are at sports betting. The bottom line is are you 55 percent when all is said and done? We’re at 59 percent since I started putting picks out on this site and at 27-20-2 in college picks, good for 57 percent. I’m always trying to improve my processes, gain as much information about these teams as possible and make bets when I see value. Overall, it’s been working out so far. As for last week, I’ll try to learn from it and move on to some winners in week 9.
West Virginia -13.5 hosting Baylor – Thursday 7 ET on ESPN – We’ll start with a quick gut handicap here. West Virginia is ranked 7th in the country in offensive efficiency and Baylor is ranked 97th in the country in defensive efficiency. On the other side of the coin, Baylor is ranked 23rd in offensive efficiency compared to WVU at 77th. I think WVU will be able to get at least a few stops on defense, while their offense should be scoring at will. This just feels like a game that may be back and forth for a while, but eventually West Virginia will pull away by at least two TD’s. – WIN
Texas A&M +2 at Mississippi State – By Football Outsiders team efficiency metric F+ Mississippi State is the slightly better team. By their other team efficiency metric, Bill Connely’s S&P+ Texas A&M is superior. Texas A&M also has the better coach, better QB and the better resume so far this season. Any time Miss State has gone up a level in competition they’ve lost outright, at home to Florida, at Kentucky and at LSU. Their one decent victory came at home against a vastly overrated Auburn team. Give me the better team with the points in Texas A&M.
TCU -13.5 at Kansas – TCU has been a major disappointment this year and it’s been just as bad off the field as it has on, as star receiver Kevontae Turprin was recently dismissed from the team after being arrested for assault on a family member. This game is a turning point in the season for TCU. Any hope of a Big 12 title or a marquee bowl game is gone, but a winning season and a trip to a bowl game are still in the picture. With a top 10 head coach in Gary Patterson, I expect the Horned Frogs to rally in this spot rather than continue to crumble. Kansas is ranked #107 in the country in S&P+ and #97 in F+. We’re getting a lot of line value on TCU here compared to what this line would have been in the preseason and I expect them to win by three touchdowns.
Purdue +1.5 at Michigan State – Better team getting the points in a flat spot for Michigan State coming off a huge letdown in their biggest game of the season last week against Michigan. Michigan State has lost to a pretty lousy Northwestern team who just went to OT with Nebraska and won 18-15 to Rutgers (to be fair, Purdue also lost to NW but it was the first game of the season and Purdue should have won that game). Purdue just showed what they could do beating Ohio State outright and I see them in a class above MSU so I’ll take the points.
Washington State +3 at Stanford – Better team getting too many points again here. Here’s how these two teams stack up in the advanced efficiency metrics. In S&P+ Stanford ranks #43 in the country compared to Wash State at #24. In F+ Stanford ranks #38 in the country to Wash State at #21. Stanford’s offense is not good enough to keep up with Washington State’s offense, and Stanford’s defense isn’t good enough to make up for it. Give me the points, but I don’t think we’ll need them.
Iowa +6.5 at Penn State – Better team getting points? Maybe not quite but according to F+ these two teams are basically equal. I’ll happily take the 6 points or 6.5 if available with the better defense. This line is just too high. This should be a low tempo game, Iowa will run the ball, play good defense and bleed the clock. Give me all those points.