Week Two: 3-3
The LSU Tigers are dominant OTR in Starkvegas. More troubling than the trends is a Bully secondary which was repeatedly torched vertically by ‘Zona, and a passing game that seems underused.
Sort of proving up both of these points: Jayden Daniels had more attempts than Will Rogers, three times the yards, and 10.6 yards per attempt.
What on Earth?
Well, the Bulldogs can finally wake up and start the season. Numbers say they will. Long day for Rattler, even worse for very soft USC DL and OL lines.
Where have those South Carolina lines been all season? Either they resurrected the 2011 team or UGA is finally showing some chinks in the armor.
I suspect we’ll see a lot of people on the 2-deep who want a starting spot, hence a lot of effort. I really like this game, and I don’t say that much about Tide contests.
Yeah...about that. I’m not betting on any team coached by any member of this offensive staff, ever again.
The Tide defense would be well within their rights to host a blanket party….
Welcome to Week Four of 2023’s Giving Away Money.
We use data-based algorithmic predictions for all of our picks, combined with deep knowledge, and some good ole’ fashioned eyeballs. And, after just two weeks of data — about half against FCS body bags — the latter are going to be far more necessary than usual.
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For current odds, check those out here.
Half a dozen games to go through today, and you know the drill: One we like, one we love, an underdog to consider, one to steer clear of, a ginormous spread worth your time, and a mortal lock.
Vegas has your money; let’s go get it.
Not with a 10’ Pole and Stolen Money:
FSU -2.5 at Clemson — How lucky do you feel? This one is real close, but likes the matchup of FSU’s wideouts on Clemmy’s corners, and then CU turning it over a few times. Biggest ACC game in, god, forever? FSU -3.98
I hate to be really Machiavellian about this, but we’ve seen hella’ sketch officiating over the years from ACC officials putting their thumbs on the scales. Do Wofford and Crew value a resurgent national brand like FSU more than the regional and very divisive Swamp Barners?
I’m not saying it’s explicitly said “go make sure Clemson wins”, but you’d hard-pressed to find more implicit biases given more free reign on a weekly basis than in a big ACC game involving one of their favorites.
And I’m not trusting my money to an ACC official, y’all.
One We Like:
Ohio State -3 at Notre Dame — I regret to inform you that, for all of their warts and wrinkles, Ohio State did not actually go anywhere. And depending on which model you use, this one could actually be a laugher. The culprit is a ND defense that has regressed, and an OSU defense that has improved. Hartman’s got his work cut out for him.
Composite gives us a healthy, safe cover here for the Buckeyes -7.09
One We Love:
KSU -4 vs. UCF — If you thought Ole Miss/Alabama was going to be decided on the ground (and it will be), then I give you this sexy beast of a game. This is going to be arousing as hell for manball aficionados. Sooooo much power running and veer option attack...and mucho grinding in the trenches. If UCF had more Power 5-level talent, it’d be a tossup. But they don’t, so two old school guys butt heads as we get to watch the Wildcats bang their way to a TD win. My mancrush on Chris Klieman is both legendary and well-earned.
I miss 1984 football, y’all
Kansas State -7.15
An Underdog With Bite:
USC -35 at Arizona State
Yes, ASU is second-worst team in the country in turnover margin at -9....But 8 of those were in one game. The Trojan secondary is far more forgiving than Fresno. And as we all know, Lincoln Riley just isn’t terribly worked up about defense — especially when given a big lead, and especially in the second half. We’ll trust the ASU defense to try and stand on their head (they have most of the year), and the Sun Devils passing game to cause just enough trouble here. Take ASU...oh, sure, it’ll still be a beating. Just probably not six scores-worth.
Historically, across many coaches, the Trojans have tended to be sluggish in Tempe. Ask Lane Kiffin. (Okay, that was cheap.)
Ginormous Spread Worth Your Time:
There aren’t actually a whole lot of games with large spreads this week. About 90% of the country begins or has already begun their conference slate. There is, however, this interesting game.
Rutgers +24 at Michigan — The Scarlet Knights are undefeated...but this is another realm they’re entering Saturday...and finally on the road too. Harbaugh has tormented RU in general. I would expect no exception to that rule this week. And, he’s also finally back from his suspension for cheating!
I’d expect the Wolverines to look a little rusty as they finally play a team somewhat with a pulse. But Rutgers has generally been awful OTR under Schiano, and the Big House is gonna’ be rocking’ for the return of the Dad Pants Messiah. I just don’t see where RU is going to get their points here. And win the dam finally bursts, and it will, UM will pour it on (for them, I mean).
Meat Chicken. -28.12, something like 34-6
Florida -28 vs. Charlotte
Huge home win aside last week, the Gators aren’t settled enough on offense to take their foot off the gas against anyone. There’s potential here, to be sure, with the Gators. And Billy has gone from hot seat to potential savior in just six days.
Still, UF needs to polish it up before the Cocktail Party. And, with UGA lookin’ a little worse, and UF a lot better than we thought, every snap for the next few weeks is being played with that in mind: Beat the ‘Dawgs.
They’ll tune up on Biff and the 49ers first, as Graham Mertz gains even more confidence against this putrescent secondary...and Trevor Etienne is gonna feed, y’all.
It all points to a Gata romp.
Are we going to see ACC officiating bail out one of these contenders with a game-deciding, transparently-awful call?
This poll is closed
Yup. And Clemson will get the benefit of the doubt too.
Yup. The ACC really needs their national brands to be relevant, FSU is going to get a lot of calls.
Nope. It won’t be necessary. One team is going to dominate.
Nope. ACC officials are going to call a clean, above-board game and let the outcome be decided on the field. (LOL).
Want some more of these? I crank the data for (almost) every single game, every single week over at my companion site: (Almost) Giving Away Money. Check it out, and prosper.
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