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By Marc Lawrence, PlaybookSports.com — Here are this weekend’s college matchups… Beep, beep, here come the Roadrunners to get things started…
UTSA over TEXAS by 3
The Crimson Tide looked more like pan-seared steak to the Longhorns when they took a 19-17 lead with under 1:30 remaining last week, only to let the Tide slip off the spit when Bama kicked a 33-yard fi eld goal with 10 seconds remaining in the game. Adding misery to the moment, the Horns lost star QB Quinn Ewers with a shoulder injury at the half and he could be out for 2 to 3 games, although Steve Sarkisian was coy about who would start on Saturday. Sarkisian is 0-2 ATS at home when coming off a home loss. Meanwhile, you just know UTSA head coach Jeff Traylor has had this game in his sights ever since signing on with the Roadrunners three years ago. The legendary, multiple-winning Texas High School Coach Of the Year can write his own ticket with a win today, and it couldn’t happen under better circumstances. UTSA is 20-8 SU under Traylor, with only two losses by more than 14 points. He is also 18-5 SU in games in which his team has an equal or better overall record than the opponent, including 6-2 ATS as a dog. Lots of good numbers but we saved the best for last with THE CLINCHER: See this week’s TRIVIA TEASER on page 2.
LSU over Mississippi St by 6
You must have noticed the SMART BOX loves it some LSU, or perhaps more accurately, fades on the Bulldogs. Yes, Mike Leach has the StarkVegas crowd into a 2-0 SUATS frenzy, but they aren’t reliable winners when gunning for a third straight, going 6-10 ATS as a favorite. LSU and Bayou Brian Kelly hit the win column with a classic cupcake comeback over Southern last week and the Tigers are 4-0 ATS as a dog when coming off a non- SEC game. Kelly is 38-22-2 ATS when taking the points. As Kelly might say himself “y’all take the Tigahs, ya heah?
AUBURN over Penn St by 11
Instead of waiting ‘til the end for the big finish, let’s flop things around (we despise the term “flip the script”) and be aggressive early. You may rightfully ask how we got here. Auburn may have found a pulse under embattled Coach Bryan Harsin after a rocky first season which left many War Eagle faithful screaming for his head, and his job, too. Harsin is 27-7 in his first four games of the season and Bo Jackson U is 10-2 ATS as home dogs against undefeated foes. Add to that Brunswick Stew, Nittany Lions leader James Franklin is 3-10-1 ATS away vs a team coming off BTB wins. PSU being 2-7 ATS vs. the SEC is another reason we’re flying with the Tigers. That about clinches it, wouldn’t you say?
NEW ORLEANS over Tampa Bay by 10
Now that Tom Brady has finally dipped his toe into game action this season, it’s time for a bad case of athlete’s foot to rear its head. It’s what’s happened to him regularly throughout his legendary NFL career when taking to the road as a favorite when coming off a road win after beating the spread by double-digits in his last game. That’s confirmed by his less-than-human 2-7 ATS career mark in this role, including six straight losing tickets in his last six tries. In the other huddle, Saint QB Jameis Winston was incredible in closing out New Orleans’ 27-26 win over Atlanta, going 13-of-16 for 212 yards and two touchdowns in the final quarter, including a 40-yard bomb to Jarvis Landry on the final offensive drive. Thanks to Winston’s heroics, New Orleans scored the final 17 points in regulation. Yes, we realize the Saints took the Bucs out twice last season, but Tampa’s tepid 1-6 ATS record away in games with double revenge squelches that thought. With New Orleans 7-1 ATS the last eight games in this series, we turn it over to THE CLINCHER: The Saints are 8-1 SU and 9-0 ATS as conference home dogs versus .800 or greater opponents.
Thanks for posting these. I like using these picks
Glad to hear that Doc. Whether betting or not, it enhances my enjoyment of the games.
But, yeah, Marc can tout me with his comprehensive technical coverage. Depends on how you weigh the factors most important to you as a handicapper.