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Thread: A Sneak Peek At CFB 2018 News/Views/Highlights !

  1. #91
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    Handicapping Oklahoma (10)
    August 8, 2018


    The Oklahoma Sooners will have a new quarterback this season, as gone is Heisman Trophy winner Baker Mayfield. Taking over will be Kyler Murray who has a big arm and who is an explosive runner. A lot is expected from Oklahoma this season, as the Sooners are considered national title contenders. Oddsmakers set the win total for Oklahoma at 10 games for this season.

    Let’s look at Oklahoma’s schedule to see if they will go over or under that number.

    2018 Oklahoma Sooners Regular Season Win Total
    10 (over -125)
    10 (under -105)


    2018 Oklahoma Sooners Schedule Analysis

    Week 1 – Sept. 1 vs. Florida Atlantic

    The Sooners get an interesting test in their opening game against a Florida Atlantic team that has Lane Kiffin as their head coach. The Owls will definitely be able to score, but they don’t have the defense to stop the Sooners.

    Week 2 – Sept. 8 vs. UCLA

    The Sooners have to face another high-powered offense in Week 2, as Chip Kelly’s Bruins come to Norman. The best time to face the Bruins might be early before Kelly gets his system in place.

    Week 3 – Sept. 15 at Iowa State

    The only game that the Sooners lost last year in the regular season was to the Cyclones so this will be a revenge game. This one is on the road, but the Sooners should roll.

    Week 4 – Sept. 22 vs. Army

    This is an interesting home and home series that begins in 2018, but it should be very one-sided, as the Sooners are simply too strong for the Black Knights. The Sooners will travel to West Point in 2020.

    Week 5 – Sept. 29 vs. Baylor

    The Bears gave the Sooners a big scare last season before losing 49-41. The Sooners get to play this one in Norman and they should have enough to hold off the Bears.

    Week 6 – Oct. 6 vs. Texas (Cotton Bowl - Dallas)

    The Sooners held off the Longhorns last season but it wasn’t easy, as Texas rallied from a big deficit. The Longhorns are expected to be improved this season, but whether they are close enough to Oklahoma’s level if the question.

    Week 8 – Oct. 20 at TCU

    If you are looking at key games for Oklahoma this season this is definitely one of them. The Sooners have won the last four meetings against TCU, but this game is on the road and it could be Oklahoma’s first loss of the season.

    Week 9 – Oct. 27 vs. Kansas State

    The Wildcats nearly beat Oklahoma last season, but this game is in Norman. That should mean a win for the Sooners, but keep in mind that KSU has won two of the last three at Oklahoma.

    Week 10 – Nov. 3 at Texas Tech

    The Sooners are better on both sides of the ball than Texas Tech and it is hard to see a Kliff Kingsbury team winning a big game.

    Week 11 – Nov. 10 vs. Oklahoma State

    The Cowboys scored a lot of points last season against the Sooners in Stillwater and still lost. This time the game is in Norman and Oklahoma should play better defense and get the win.

    Week 12 – Nov. 17 vs. Kansas

    This will be a rout, as Kansas is considered one of the worst teams in the country. It is only a matter of the final margin of victory for the Sooners.

    Week 13 – Nov. 23 at West Virginia

    This game could actually be a huge one in the Big 12 if West Virginia lives up to their expectations. The Mountaineers have the best quarterback in the conference in Will Grier and they are capable of challenging the Sooners.

    2018 Oklahoma Sooners Regular Season Win Total Prediction

    The schedule for the Sooners in 2018 is really pretty favorable. The season probably comes down to the two road games at TCU and West Virginia. If the Sooners win all of their other games as expected that would get them to 10 wins. They would need to just win one of those other two contests to get to 11 wins and go over their win total. That seems the most likely scenario, so we’ll go over the win total for Oklahoma this season.
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  2. #92
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    Iowa suspends Jackson, Lattimore for opener
    August 8, 2018


    IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) Iowa tackle Alaric Jackson and defensive lineman Cedrick Lattimore will be suspended for the season opener against Northern Illinois for violating team rules.

    The Hawkeyes say the suspensions aren't for legal matters. But coach Kirk Ferentz says Jackson and Lattimore's issues surfaced in the late spring and both players were given guidelines to meet.

    Ferentz called their response ''excellent.'' However, it apparently wasn't strong enough to avoid missing the opener.

    The loss of Jackson means that Iowa will face the Huskies on Sept. 1 without either of their starting tackles. Tristan Wirfs, like Jackson a sophomore pressed into duty a year ago, is suspended for one game after being charged with drunk driving on July 29.
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    Ole Miss Breakdown
    August 8, 2018

    By Brian Edwards

    Ole Miss enters its second season under head coach Matt Luke looking to improve on last year’s 6-6 straight-up record and 5-7 against-the-spread mark. This will be last year of probation for the Rebels, who can’t go to the SEC Championship Game or a bowl for a third straight year.

    Therefore, many view Ole Miss as a non-factor for one more campaign. However, it says here that the Rebels have enough talent to play spoilers in the race to win both SEC divisions. They return eight starters on offense and seven on defense.

    Most of that talent is on offense. This unit has at least a pair of future first-round picks in offensive tackle Greg Little and wide receiver A.J. Brown. Mel Kiper Jr.’s first Big Board for the 2019 Draft had Brown listed as the No. 4 overall pick with Little at No. 6.

    Brown is the leader of a WR group that’s ranked No. 1 in the nation by most preseason publications, including Phil Steele’s. The junior was a second-team All-American as a true sophomore in 2017, hauling in 75 receptions for 1,252 yards and 11 touchdowns.

    There are two more elite wideouts in D.K. Metcalf and DaMarkus Lodge, who had 41 catches for 698 yards and seven TDs last year. Metcalf started all 12 games in 2017, making 39 receptions for 646 yards and seven TDs, including the game-winner in the final seconds of a 37-34 victory at Kentucky.

    Former QB Shea Patterson transferred to Michigan. The former five-star recruit from Texas went down with a torn ACL in a 40-24 home loss to LSU last October. Jordan Ta’amu started the last five games and distinguished himself extremely well. The senior who came to Oxford via the juco route completed 66.5 percent of his throws for 1,682 yards with an 11/4 touchdown-to-interception ratio.

    Luke also has found the QB of the future in 5-star recruit Matt Corral, a California native that arrived on campus in January and took part in spring practice. Corral was originally a Florida commit before Jim McElwain was fired and replaced by Dan Mullen.

    In Steele’s preseason mag, junior tight end Dawson Knox is listed as a third-team All-SEC pick. Knox had had 24 catches for 321 yards in ’17. Brown and Little are first-team All-SEC selections, while Metcalf is a second-teamer and OG Javon Patterson joins Knox as a third-teamer.

    Ole Miss averaged 32.8 points per game under first-year offensive coordinator Phil Longo, who was hired by former HC Hugh Freeze before his dismissal last summer. Longo had previously been OC in ’16 at Sam Houston State running an ‘Air Raid’ attack.

    Steele ranks the Rebels’ offensive line as the fourth-best in the SEC and the nation’s 17th-best. However, the RBs are 13th in the conference. Juco transfer RB Scottie Phillips was in for the spring and may end up as the starter. Jordan Wilkins has departed after rushing for 1,039 yards and nine TDs with a 6.5 yards-per-carry average.

    D’Vaughn Pennamon ran for 227 yards and four TDs with a 4.1 YPC average last year, while Eric Swinney ran for 209 yards and three TDs with a 4.8 YPC average. However, Pennamon is currently out indefinitely with a knee injury.

    As bullish as I am on the Ole Miss offense, I’m equally down on the defense, if not more so. This unit allowed 34.6 PPP in ’17. The Rebels lost their two leading tacklers and one of the SEC’s best pass rushers in Marquis Haynes, who had 7.5 sacks and five QB hurries last season. (Of course, Haynes is the stud that blindsided Alabama QB Jalen Hurts in Oxford two years ago with as perfect a hit on a QB as you’ll ever see, resulting in a scoop-and-score TD that gave Ole Miss a 24-3 lead. Alas, the Crimson Tide rallied for a 48-43 win to avoid a third straight loss to the Rebels.)

    Steele’s SEC Unit Rankings reflect the challenges that second-year DC Wesley McGriff (co-DC at Auburn in ’16) faces. The defensive line is ranked 12th in the league, the LBs are 14th and the secondary is seventh.

    Three Ole Miss defenders are on Steele’s preseason All-SEC teams. Junior DT Benito Jones is a second-teamer, senior CB Ken Webster is a third-team selection and junior free safety Jaylon Jones is a fourth-teamer. Benito Jones has started 14 career games in his first two seasons, recording 68 tackles, 10 tackles for loss, two sacks, seven QB hurries and one forced fumble.

    Luke hit the juco trail with hopes of adding immediate help on this side of the ball. Two defensive linemen were added in Noah Jefferson and Hal Northern. Jefferson and juco LB Vernon Dasher arrived early for spring practice and Dasher is probably going to start right away.

    Sportsbook.ag currently has Ole Miss with a season win total of six (‘under’ -150, ‘over’ +120).

    Before looking at this year’s schedule, let’s rewind what went down in ’17. Remember, Luke replaced Freeze on an interim basis. Ole Miss started 2-0 with lopsided home victories over South Alabama (47-27) and UT-Martin (45-23), only to lose three straight road games by double-digit margins. The Rebels stopped the bleeding with a 57-35 home win over Vanderbilt to get back to .500.

    Then Patterson went down in the home loss to 24th-ranked LSU. From there, Ole Miss finished 3-2 in Ta’amu’s five starts, including a 31-28 win at Mississippi State as a 15-point underdog in the Egg Bowl. This victory convinced AD Ross Bjork to give Luke the HC gig on a permanent basis.

    Both defeats down the stretch were one-possession games, as the Rebels lost home games to Arkansas (38-37) and Texas A&M (31-24). They averaged 35.8 PPG with Ta’amu under center.

    Luke’s squad opens the year with a tone-setting showdown with Texas Tech in Houston. As of Aug. 8, most books had the Red Raiders installed as 1.5 or two-point favorites. The other non-conference games are at home vs. Southern Illinois, Kent State and ULM.

    Ole Miss draws South Carolina and Vanderbilt as its games against the SEC East. The Rebels will be in a favorable spot for a Nov. 3 home game vs. the Gamecocks, who will come to Oxford in a potential look-ahead situation (depending on the SEC East standings at the time, obviously) with a game at Florida on deck. Most important, Ole Miss has two weeks to prepare for Will Muschamp’s squad, which hosts Tennessee the prior weekend.

    The spoiler role I noted earlier in both divisions is clearly referencing South Carolina in how Ole Miss can impact the race in the East. Although we don’t give the Rebels a shot against Alabama, they could give Auburn and Mississippi State trouble, especially with both of those contests at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium.

    In its Games of the Year section, Sportsbook.ag has Ole Miss as a 10.5-point home underdog vs. Mississippi State. Some other shops have the Rebels as 22.5-point home underdogs vs. Alabama on Sept. 15.

    I’m going to pass on Ole Miss’s season win total due to my lack of faith in its defense. With that said, I do believe the Rebels will win at least six games. They might wreak havoc on South Carolina’s season in early November. If Luke’s squad can win the turnover battle in home games vs. Auburn and Mississippi State, it could pull upsets in those home outings as well.

    **B.E.’s Bonus Nuggets**

    -- Ole Miss is ranked 60th in Steele’s preseason Power Rankings.

    -- Ole Miss finished 2017 minus five in turnover margin. The Rebels were +34 on their 12 foes in total offense.

    -- Steele ranks the Rebels’ schedule as the 46th-toughest nationally, which is the SEC’s eighth-toughest slate.

    -- Ole Miss went 3-1 ATS as a road underdog on Luke’s watch last year and is 17-8 in 25 such spots dating back to 2008.

    -- Steele’s National Unit Rankings has the Rebels at No. 27 in the secondary.

    -- Not one team on Ole Miss’s schedule has an open date beforehand. The regular-season finale vs. MSU falls on Thanksgiving Day.

    -- Ole Miss returns 57 lettermen and lost 28.
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    Kentucky Breakdown
    August 10, 2018

    By Brian Edwards

    Going into the crucial sixth season of his tenure, Mark Stoops appears to have his best overall team at Kentucky. The Wildcats, who are off a 7-6 straight-up record and a 4-9 against-the-spread ledger in 2017, return seven starters on offense and eight on defense.

    UK won its first three games last season and was 5-1 going into a road assignment in Starkville. Truth be told, Stoops’s bunch should’ve been 6-0 at that point if not for gift-wrapping Florida a pair of TD passes when UK didn’t even line up a defender on a wide receiver split out wide.

    The first such play came on a fourth-and-short situation from midfield late in the first half. The second came on a third-and-goal play coming out of a timeout in the final minute of a 28-27 loss, UK’s 31st in a row against the Gators. This is the longest active losing streak in an FBS rivalry.

    After getting dusted 45-7 at Mississippi State, UK responded to win a 29-26 decision over Tennessee to clinch a postseason berth. However, the ‘Cats gave up a TD pass in the final five seconds of a 37-34 home loss to Ole Miss. They’d bounce back to throttle Vanderbilt by a 44-21 count as 2.5-point road underdogs to improve to 7-3.

    But Kentucky lost its last two regular-season games in blowout fashion at Georgia (42-13) and vs. Louisville (44-17). Then at the Music City Bowl, UK lost 24-23 to Northwestern after failing on a two-point conversion in the final minute. In other words, three gut-wrenching defeats by five combined points prevented the ‘Cats from winning 10 games.

    Kentucky’s roster has a slew of future NFL players, including junior RB Benny Snell, TE C.J. Conrad, OT Landon Young, OG Logan Stenberg, LB Josh Allen, LB Jordan Jones and safety Mike Edwards. Senior CBs Derrick Baity and Chris Westry are a solid duo that could play on Sundays in the future as well.

    The problem for this UK team – and for gamblers looking to form a preseason opinion or wager on its win total – is that there’s zero experience at the QB position. The battle to take the first snap in the opener vs. Central Michigan is two-man race between Terry Wilson and Gunnar Hoak. Neither player has taken a collegiate snap.

    Wilson signed with Oregon in the 2016 class before transferring after one year. He had a 26/11 touchdown-to-interception ratio at Garden City Community College in Kansas last season. 247Sports ranked Wilson as the No. 2 dual-threat QB and the No. 34 overall player in the 2018 juco class. He chose UK over offers from Baylor, Ole Miss and Indiana.

    Hoak, a third-year sophomore who enrolled early before the ’16 campaign, arrived at the same time as offensive coordinator Eddie Gran and QBs coach Darin Hinshaw. Therefore, the 3-star recruit out of Dublin (OH) High School has the advantage of being in the same system for three years now.

    Whoever is under center, he’ll be able to lean on one of the nation’s premier RBs in Snell, who ran for 1,333 yards and 19 touchdowns while averaging 5.1 yards per carry in ’17. Those numbers would’ve been better if not for his ejection from the Music City Bowl in the first quarter. This was one of the most utterly despicable rulings by a referee that I’ve seen in college football history. Snell garnered second-team All-SEC honors last year and is a first-team All-SEC pick in Phil Steele’s preseason magazine.

    Snell will work behind an offensive line that has 60 career starts between them. This group also adds E.J. Price, a former four-star recruit to USC in ’16 who transferred to Lexington and sat out last year.

    Stoops and his staff are optimistic that senior WR Dorian Baker can stay healthy. He went down with a season-ending injury in August of last year. Baker had 55 receptions for 608 yards and three TDs as a sophomore in 2015. He has 88 career catches for 1,015 yards and six TDs.

    Conrad, a preseason second-team All-SEC TE in Steele’s preseason mag, has 50 career grabs for 697 yards and nine TDs. Junior Tavin Richardson and sophomore Lynn Bowden are the likely starters at WR alongside Baker. Richardson had 27 receptions for 371 yards and one TD in ’17, while Bowden had 17 catches for 210 yards.

    Kentucky’s defense gave up 381, 346 and 333 rushing yards in its three defeats to close last year. This stop unit allowed an average of 28.2 points per game even though it produced the most sacks (30) since Stoops arrived.

    Edwards was a first-team All-SEC choice in ’17, recording a team-best 97 tackles to go with four interceptions, three tackles for loss, one sack, one QB hurry and seven passes broken up. Steele has him as a preseason second-team All-American, while Allen is a fourth-team All-American.

    Allen earned third-team All-SEC honors last year when he recorded 65 tackles, seven sacks, 3.5 TFL’s, four QB hurries, three PBU, two forced fumbles and one interception. Jones was a second-team All-SEC selection in 2016, but he missed four games and wasn’t 100 percent healthy for a few others in ’17.

    During that ’16 campaign, I realized that I loved Jones as a player. His team was taking its 30th consecutive defeat to UF at The Swamp. If you’ve never been to Gainesville in mid-September, I can assure you that a sunny day makes it feel like the temperature is at least 100 degrees and even hotter sometimes. Kentucky was down 45-0 early in the fourth quarter, but the same LB kept darting into the backfield to make tackles. That UK team clearly quit on that day, but Jones didn’t take a play off. Look for this hard-nosed gamer to bounce back from an injury-riddled year in ’18.

    Steele’s SEC Unit Rankings have the ‘Cats at No. 14 at the QB position, No. 6 at RB, No. 13 at WR, No. 11 on the o-line, No. 13 on the d-line, No. 8 at LB, No. 8 in the secondary, No. 12 on special teams and No. 6 in chemistry.

    Sportsbook.ag has UK’s win total at 5.5 (‘under’ -120, ‘over’ -110). The Wildcats, who have never made the SEC Championship Game, have 300/1 odds to win in Atlanta this year. Those same longshot odds are shared with Arkansas, and only Vanderbilt (500/1) has longer odds. 5Dimes.eu has UK with 45/1 odds to win the SEC East.

    Kentucky’s non-conference schedule has three home games vs. Central Michigan, Murray St. and Middle Tennessee. The lone road assignment is the regular-season finale at U of L, where UK won 41-38 as a 27-point underdog in ’16.

    UK’s draw from the SEC West is a home game vs. Mississippi State and a trip to College Station to face Texas A&M on Oct. 6. The Wildcats get their open date on Oct. 13 ahead of a home game vs. Vandy. They get four of their first five games at home.

    Stoops joins LSU’s Ed Orgeron and Vandy’s Derek Mason as the SEC coaches most likely to be on the hot seat if things don’t go their way in ’18. He is 26-36 overall, 12-28 in league play and 0-2 in bowl games over five seasons at UK. A third straight postseason invite is a must and depending on how it goes down (blowout losses and/or unimpressive wins?), a 6-6 regular-season record might have Big Blue Nation calling for change.

    I think Stoops needs to go 7-5 to feel comfortable about being retained. To get to seven wins, UK must sweep its three non-conference home games, beat Vanderbilt at Commonwealth Stadium and win in Knoxville. Where are the two other victories going to come from? Well, the ‘Cats will be home underdogs at least three times – vs. Mississippi State, vs. South Carolina and vs. Georgia.

    As you’ll see below, Stoops hasn’t exactly thrived in home ‘dog spots. The four other road games are at Florida, at Texas A&M, at Missouri and at U of L.

    Unless Wilson wins the job and has a breakout year, I have a hard time seeing UK winning more than six games. The win total of 5.5 is a good number and it’s a PASS for me.

    **B.E.’s Bonus Nuggets**

    -- Stoops is an atrocious 3-11-2 ATS in 16 games as a home underdog at UK.

    -- 5Dimes has Snell with 300/1 odds to win the Heisman Trophy. The same offshore shop has him with 27/1 odds to get invited to the Heisman Trophy presentation.

    -- Steele’s position rankings of players eligible for the 2019 NFL Draft has Snell listed as the No. 3 RB. Conrad is the No. 7 TE, Young is the No. 20 OT, Stenberg is the No. 16 OG, Allen is the No. 3 OLB, Jones is the No. 23 OLB and Edwards is the No. 11 strong safety.

    -- Kentucky is ranked No. 75 in Steele’s Preseason Power Rankings.

    -- UK hasn’t won at Neyland Stadium since 1984. The ‘Cats will have a great chance to do so on Nov. 10.

    -- According to Steele’s rankings, Kentucky has the SEC’s sixth-toughest schedule and the country’s 39th-toughest slate.

    -- UK took a hit when DE Denzil Ware decided to transfer to Jacksonville St. late this past spring. Ware had 47 tackles, 6.5 sacks, 2.5 TFL’s, two QB hurries, one interception and one PBU in '17.

    -- In its Games of the Year section, Sportsbook has Kentucky as a 9.5-point road underdog at Louisville.
    Remember the 3 G's Gambling, Golf, Girls not in any particular order.....

  5. #95
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    2018 SEC Preview
    August 12, 2018

    By Marc Lawrence

    SEC2018 SEC PREVIEW

    Gimme 5

    The SEC features 5 first-year new head coaches for the 2018 season. In fact that number actually reaches 6 if you include Ole Miss mentor Matt Luke, who is back after taking the reins on an interim basis last season following the Hugh Freeze fiasco. Jimbo Fisher (Texas A&M) leads the run with a $75 million dollar contract. In addition, Joe Moorhead (Mississippi State), Chad Morris (Arkansas), Dan Mullen (Florida) and Jeremy Pruitt (Tennessee) complete the cast.

    Fast Facts

    Alabama has scored more touchdowns than any team in the SEC only once under Nick Saban’s tenure ... The Crimson Tide is the only FBS school to make it to all four College Football playoffs ... Despite an average drop of 1,409 fans in 2017, the SEC has led the FBS in average attendance every year since 1998. It was the largest drop since 1983 ... Only one time since 2007 has Alabama or Auburn failed to win the SEC West division (LSU in 2011).

    12th Man Tradition

    In case you didn’t know, the 12th Man Tradition at Texas A&M started in 1922 when a person in the stands (a basketball player who had played some football) was called down to the bench and asked to suit up on the sideline because of the toll injuries had taken on the tea, From that time on, A&M students stand to show loyalty and a readiness to help the team if needed. And know you know the rest of the story.

    Note: The numbers following each team name represents the amount of returning starters on offense and defense, along with the number of returning linemen, with an asterisk (*) designating a returning quarterback.

    ALABAMA (Offense - *7/4, Defense - 3/2, 52 Lettermen)

    TEAM THEME: ALABAMA SHAKES

    Oh oh. This could get downright ugly. Tide QB Jalen Hurts won the SEC Offensive Player of the Year award as a freshman in 2016, and then threw for 2,081 yards, 17 touchdowns and one interception before he was benched in favor of freshman QB Tua Tagovailoa in the second half of the national championship game against Georgia. Tagovailoa led the Tide to a come-from-behind win and the rest is history. Suddenly, Nick Saban has a two-headed QB situation – and that’s generally not a good thing. And then there’s the fact that the Tide was the 3rd hardest-hit team in the offseason with 5 NFL defections, 14 returning starters and 16 players from the 2-deep gone, with the wide receiving corps hurt the most. Then again, Bama’s 24.4 scoring differential last season was second-best in the nation to Penn State (24.6).

    STAT YOU WILL LIKE: Nick Saban is an incredible 125-14 at Alabama since 2008, including 70-10 in SEC games.

    PLAY AGAINST: as a favorite at LSU (11/3)

    ARKANSAS (Offense - 9/4, Defense - 8/2, 59 Lettermen)


    TEAM THEME:
    NEW-LOOK PIGS

    After losing more games than they won (29-34) behind Bret Bielema, Arkansas decided a new look was needed. One of only two Power 5 schools (out of 13 openings) to hire a Group of 5 head coach in the offseason, the Hogs welcome new head coach Chad Morris, former boss at SMU and top assistant with Clemson. He brings a new playbook with his modified spread offense, along with John Chavis, former LSU defensive coordinator, who will implement the third different defensive scheme for the Hogs in as many years. The offense returns 4 starting linemen who allowed 35 sacks last season. They will be expected to improve while adapting to Morris’ new offense. The jury is still out.

    STAT YOU WILL LIKE: The Hogs have played UNDER their season win total in four of the last five seasons.

    PLAY AGAINST: vs. Mississippi (10/13) - *KEY if favored

    AUBURN (Offense - *6/1, Defense - 7/3, 58 Lettermen)

    TEAM THEME: AIRING IT OUT, PART 2

    When QB Jarrett Stidham transferred in as a former 5-star recruit from Texas A&M, the Tigers would have been ecstatic knowing he would throw for 3,158 yards and 18 TDs, while defeating Alabama and winning the SEC West division title. Safe to say they were euphoric after checking both boxes last year. So what do they do for an encore? For openers, ‘Air’ Stidham is back but he’ll be operating without RBs Kerryon Johnson and Kamryn Pettway. In addition, four senior starting OL have departed. Thus, replicating last year’s success will be difficult. But before bailing out entirely on the new-look Tigers, keep this in mind: Over the last two regular season campaigns, the SU stats winner is 25-1 in Tigers’ games. Keep in mind, though, that the Tigers have suffered at least four losses each of the last four years.

    STAT YOU WILL LIKE: The Tigers are 33-1 SU at home in non-conference games since 2007.

    PASS

    FLORIDA (Offense - *10/5, Defense - 9/3, 53 Lettermen)


    TEAM THEME: MISSION BBQ

    New head coach Dan Mullen has handed the keys to the UF offense over to quarterbacks coach Brian Johnson, who is commissioned with igniting an offense that has been MIA since Tim Tebow’s days. The Gators’ offense has not been ranked inside the Top 10 in the SEC since 2009 when Tebow was behind center. Florida finished 13th out of 14 SEC teams last season, using three different QBs. Johnson insists redshirt sophomore QB Feleipe Franks’ offseason maturation has gone from the “class to the grass” and is ready for a breakout campaign. He’s being pressed by QB Kyle Trask. After last season’s red-faced 4-win effort, the Gators are a certified ‘mission team’ in 2018. And in payback mode against no less than five foes, expect Mullen to turn up the flames.

    STAT YOU WILL LIKE: Florida’s 10 assistant coaches will earn $4.74 million this season, and $5.4 million in 2019.

    PLAY ON: at Florida State (11/24)

    GEORGIA (Offense - *8/4, Defense - 5/2, 53 Lettermen)

    TEAM THEME: SMART-SIZED

    After winning the SEC championship and then suffering a heartbreaking loss in the College Football Playoff title game, the Bulldogs are a team on everyone’s radar this season. Before the schedule starts, however, Kirby Smart will be tasked with replacing 17 scholarship seniors, including seven senior starters on defense and two juniors that left early for the NFL draft (read: Roquan Smith, the SEC Defensive Player of the Year). In fact, only three other FBS teams suffered a deeper degree of player losses than the Dawgs, with a total of 14 returning starters and 16 players from the 2-deep gone. The good news is QB Jake Fromm’s 24 TDs and 160.1 ranking was tops among FBS freshmen last year.

    STAT YOU WILL LIKE: A total of 50 freshmen have played for the Bulldogs over the past three seasons.

    PLAY AGAINST: vs. Florida (10/27)

    KENTUCKY (Offense - 8/4, Defense - 10/3, 47 Lettermen)

    TEAM THEME: TOP CATS

    The Mark Stoops effect is taking hold. In 2016 and ’17, UK posted consecutive 7-win seasons, along with 4-4 records in the SEC. It’s the first time the Wildcats have won seven games and finished at least .500 in the league in consecutive seasons in 40 years. Inside those numbers is an 8-4 record in games decided by 7 points or less. The key to the success has been a recruiting effort that has landed Kentucky in the Top 50 each year under Stoops. And with it all, the Wildcats are now playing in a $120 million renovated field in front of throngs of rabid fans. It’s like they say around these parts these days – on game day, Kroger Field often becomes the third-largest city in Kentucky. With the Wildcats starting a first-year quarterback in 2018, look for RB Benny Snell – who owns consecutive 1,000-yard rushing seasons, to challenge for the league’s rushing title.

    STAT YOU WILL LIKE: Kentucky is 0-8 ATS in games following an ATS win of 20 or more points under Stoops.

    PLAY AGAINST: at Tennessee (11/10)

    LSU (Offense - 5/3, Defense - 5/1, 47 Lettermen)

    TEAM THEME:
    ORGER GONE

    Now we’re going to find out what Ed Orgeron is all about as a head coach. According to Fansided.com, from the Big Hit List of player defections, LSU’s number one cheerleader ranks #1 overall, losing 14 returning starters and 18 players from the 2-deep gone, including 6 NFL defections. In fact, only Colorado State (15) must replace more total starters than the Tigers, and only Navy (21) and UTSA (20) lost more seniors from their two-deep depth charts. After ranking 105th last year and dead last in 2016 in 4th down conversion percentage, and operating behind his third new OC is as many years, we’re guessing the Big O finds himself back in the hot seat next season. He’ll need a big year from new QB Joe Burrow, an Ohio State transfer.

    STAT YOU WILL LIKE: Ed Orgeron is 5-20 SU as a head coach against winning SEC foes in his career.

    PASS

    MISSISSIPPI (Offense - 8/4, Defense - 7/2, 56 Lettermen)


    TEAM THEME: BORN A REBEL

    Matt Luke has ties to the Ole Miss program spanning three generations. A 4-year starting center with the Rebels, Luke was thrown into the fray at the start of the season last year following the Hugh Freeze scandal. And had the Rebs not been on probation, they would have earned a bowl bid, thanks to wins in 3 of their final four games of the season. The problem this year, though, is Ole Miss must replace the most players from last year’s 2-deep roster than any team in the nation, including star QB Shea Patterson, who transferred out to Michigan. Fortunately, Luke recruited a Top 25 class in February, and over 38% of all starts last were by underclassmen.

    STAT YOU WILL LIKE: Ole Miss is 25-2 SU and 21-6 ATS as a favorite in lined games against non-conference foes.

    PLAY AGAINST: vs. Mississippi State (11/22) - *KEY as a favorite

    MISSISSIPPI STATE (Offense - *9/4, Defense -8/4, 49 Lettermen)

    TEAM THEME: WE WANT MO

    The Dan Mullen era at MSU ends, and the start of the Joe Moorhead era begins. A former head coach at Fordham where he inherited a 1-10 program – and proceeded to go 38-13 during his tenure the next four years – Joe Mo was the OC at Penn State the past two seasons and is one of the best offensive minds in the country. Before Moorhead, PSU averaged 342 yards and 22 points per game the previous two seasons. The Lions improved to 446.5 yards and 39.5 points per game when he left. Returning star dual-threat QB Nick Fitzgerald has tossed for 4,205 yards and 36 TDs the last two seasons. WRs A.J. Brown and DK Metcalf are the league’s top receiving tandem and should surpass 20 TDs this season (Brown is the SEC’s top returning wideout). Despite a schedule filled with landmines, watch those numbers blow up this season.

    STAT YOU WILL LIKE: The Bulldog defense improved 11 points and 153 YPG last season.

    PLAY AGAINST: vs. Louisiana Tech (11/3)

    MISSOURI (Offense - *9/5, Defense - 7/1, 51 Lettermen)

    TEAM THEME: TIGER BY THE TAIL

    In two short seasons under head coach Barry Odom the Tigers have flexed their muscle, averaging over 30 points and 500-plus yards both years. This from a squad he inherited that owned a powder-puff offense that averaged 14 points and 281 yards. After a miserable 1-5 start to the season last year, the Tigers closed with six straight wins while scoring an average 51.3 points per games, vaulting them to their first bowl game in four years. It should be noted, though, that Mizzou went 7-0 against teams with losing records or opponents from the FCS and 0-6 against bowl teams. New OC Derek Dooley welcomes back senior QB Drew Lock, who led the FBS with 44 TD passes last season and is projected as possibly the first quarterback to be selected in this year’s NFL draft. If the defense improves at the same pace this year as last, this team could challenge for the top spot in the SEC East – provided, of course, that they can take down bowl-caliber opposition.

    STAT YOU WILL LIKE: The Tigers are 33-8 SU and 26-11 ATS the last five years in games they manage to outgain their opponent.

    PLAY ON: vs. Kentucky (10/27)

    SOUTH CAROLINA (Offense - *8/3, Defense - 6/4, 55 Lettermen)

    TEAM THEME: ALL GAS, NO BRAKES

    On the heels of a 9-win season in Will Muschamp’s second year at the helm, the mantra in 2018 is “All Gas, No Brakes”. Buoyed by a relatively small graduation class, the Gamecocks welcome a 109-man roster – 18 more than last season. The offense is cocked-and-loaded, returning 100% of its passing yards, 98% of its rushing yards, and 80% of its receiving yards. Plus, electric senior WR Deebo Samuels returns after scoring 6 TDs in just 3 games before suffering a season-ending injury. The defense allowed just 20.7 PPG last year, its best effort since 2012. It’s worth noting that 11 players started every game last season. Five of them are back in 2018. Yes, the ‘Cocks are fueled up and ready to roll.

    STAT YOU WILL LIKE: Seventy-percent of USC’s roster was composed of underclassmen last season.

    PLAY ON: at Kentucky (9/29)

    TENNESSEE (Offense - *6/2, Defense - 7/3, 47 Lettermen)

    TEAM THEME: ROCKY FLOP

    Behind the nation’s No. 118 red zone defense, and the first 8-loss and winless SEC season in school history, Butch Jones’ fate was all but sealed. Enter new head coach Jeremy Pruitt, former defensive coordinator at Alabama, Georgia and Florida State, who has coached 41 NFL draft picks. Best of all 4 seniors with lots of playing experience anchor the defensive line. And after last year’s goose egg at home in SEC play, we’re certain Pruitt is reminded of Rocky Top’s 463-128-17 all-time mark at Neyland Stadium. Oh yeah: since 1913 the Vols have endured 10 seasons in which they failed to win 5 games. They went 63-24-10 in follow up seasons, with nary a losing year. Expect Pruitt’s debut to be a smashing success.

    STAT YOU WILL LIKE: The Vols are 7-0 SU on neutral fields since 2012. They have not played a game in North Carolina in 57 years, since 1961.

    PLAY ON: as a dog vs. Florida (9/22)

    TEXAS A&M (Offense - *8/4, Defense - 8/2, 52 Lettermen)

    TEAM THEME: NEW MATH

    Hmm. After a 7-6 season, former A&M head coach Kevin Sumlin was dropkicked in favor of Jimbo Fisher, who enters off an identical 7-6 campaign at Florida State. Nonetheless, Fisher assumes the reins in College Station after a celebrated 8-year tenure with the Seminoles in which he won a BSC Championship, 3 ACC conference championships and 4 AP Poll Top 10 finishes. Through it all he brings an 83-23-career ledger – as opposed to Sumlin’s 87-43-career log. In addition, new OC Darrell Dickey comes over from Memphis (No. 4 offense last season). Meanwhile, it’s worth noting that Aggie freshmen made 20.6% of all starts last season for A&M. Only four teams started more. No matter how you add it up, this looks to be a lateral move.

    STAT YOU WILL LIKE: The Aggies are 1-10-1 ATS as home in games following an ATS loss.

    PASS

    VANDERBILT (Offense - *7/5, Defense - 4/1, 47 Lettermen)


    TEAM THEME: MASON JARRED

    Knowing that Vanderbilt owns 23 losing seasons the last 26 years, it’s safe to say that head coach Derek Mason is officially on the hot seat at Vanderbilt. Averaging just 4.5 wins in four seasons on the sidelines, without a winning record in any campaign, Mason went on the offensive in the offseason when he hired four new coaches. Also looking to save Mason’s hide is senior QB Kyle Shurmer, who broke Vandy’s single-season record with 26 TD passes, and needs 3,163 passing yards and 20 touchdown passes to move ahead of Jay Cutler as the school’s all-time passing leader in each category. The departure of all-time leading rusher Ralph Webb is not good news – not when you’re facing 9 bowl teams.

    STAT YOU WILL LIKE: The Commodores are 0-17 SU and 2-15 ATS in Game Six of the season the last 17 years.

    PLAY AGAINST: vs. South Carolina (9/22)
    Remember the 3 G's Gambling, Golf, Girls not in any particular order.....

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    Handicapping Oklahoma State (8)
    August 13, 2018


    The Oklahoma State Cowboys have to replace some key players on both sides of the ball for the 2018 season, but head coach Mike Gundy has turned Oklahoma State into a perennial contender and the Cowboys could be a threat in the Big 12 again this season. The schedule for the Cowboys is favorable, so Oklahoma State is not without a chance to make some noise in the conference this season. Let’s look at their win total and make a prediction.

    2018 Oklahoma State Cowboys Regular Season Win Total
    8 (over -111)
    8 (under -109)


    2018 Oklahoma State Cowboys Schedule Analysis

    Week 1 – Sept. 1 vs. Missouri State


    The opener should be a cakewalk for the Cowboys, as the Bears are an FCS team. This should be a big one for Oklahoma State to start the season.

    Week 2 – Sept. 8 vs. South Alabama

    The competition doesn’t get much tougher in Week 2, as the Cowboys routed the Jaguars last season by a score of 44-7. It may not be much different this time around.

    Week 3 – Sept. 15 vs. Boise State

    The first test of the season for Oklahoma State comes in Week 3. The Broncos finished 11-3 last season and they are very capable of going into Stillwater and getting this win.

    Week 4 – Sept. 22 vs. Texas Tech

    The Cowboys have dominated this series recently, winning each of the last nine meetings. The winning streak should be at ten after this one is over.

    Week 5 – Sept. 29 at Kansas

    The Jayhawks are a bad team and even though this game is on the road the Cowboys should win it easily.

    Week 6 – Oct. 6 vs. Iowa State

    The Cowboys have won six straight in this series, but it was close last year in Ames, as Oklahoma State won 49-42. It probably won’t be that close this time.

    Week 7 – Oct. 13 at Kansas State

    This is one of those tricky games that will decide the season for the Cowboys. The Wildcats have won two of the last three in Manhattan against OSU.

    Week 9 – Oct. 27 vs. Texas

    The Cowboys have done really well against Texas lately, winning six of the last eight meetings. The Longhorns are expected to be improved, but this game is in Stillwater.

    Week 10 – Nov. 3 at Baylor

    This is a huge letdown spot for the Cowboys, as they are coming off the game against Texas and have Oklahoma next week. This is the proverbial trap game.

    Week 11 – Nov. 10 at Oklahoma

    The last time these teams met they combined to score 114 points. It probably won’t be as high scoring this time around. The Cowboys have not won a game in this series since 2014.

    Week 12 – Nov. 17 vs. West Virginia

    This one won’t be easy, as the Mountaineers have an excellent quarterback in Will Grier. This one could be huge for both teams in the Big 12 title race.

    Week 13 – Nov. 24 at TCU

    The late season schedule for OSU is very difficult, as they finish on the road in Fort Worth. The Horned Frogs are normally very tough at home and they should get this win.

    2018 Oklahoma State Cowboys Win Total Prediction

    The schedule for the Cowboys is almost like two separate seasons. The early part is very easy, while the second half is brutal. The Cowboys should be 5-1 or 6-0 when they head into Manhattan to face Kansas State. There is a chance they could be 7- when they face Texas. The problem for Oklahoma State is that two of their last three games look like definitely losses and they might lose all three. If the Cowboys don’t dominate their early season schedule and go at least 6-1 they are not likely to win eight games.

    Oddsmakers definitely know what they are doing with the Oklahoma State total, as the most likely scenario has the Cowboys going 8-4 and finishing with exactly eight wins. We’ll lean slightly to the under simply because the games against Kansas State and Texas look like toss-ups and OSU will probably have to win both to get to nine wins.
    Remember the 3 G's Gambling, Golf, Girls not in any particular order.....

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    COLLEGE FOOTBALL '18: 6 players starring for losing teams
    August 14, 2018


    Football being, in many ways, the ultimate team game can make it difficult for good players to shine when the players around them are ... not so good.

    Stars toiling on losing teams rarely get much recognition. They almost never win the big awards or get selected to the All-America teams. Time to give some love to those overlooked players whose teams did not reach the postseason last year and might have a hard time climbing back into it in 2018.

    Marquise Copeland, DT, Cincinnati

    The Bearcats are in the second year of a rebuild under coach Luke Fickell, who brought in the top-ranked recruiting class in the American Athletic Conference this year. Copeland was one of the few real keepers Fickell inherited and probably the team's best player last year. The senior had 63 tackles and 3.5 sacks in 2017. Undersized at 6-foot-2 and 282 pounds, Copeland could develop into an NFL draft pick.

    Eric Dungey, QB, Syracuse

    Dungey has been starting for the Orange since his freshman season. The problem is he has not been finishing the seasons healthy. When healthy, Dungey is a two-way threat with athleticism and size (6-4, 228) that could draw NFL attention. He enters 2018 as the only active quarterback in FBS with at least 6,000 yards passing and 1,000 yards rushing. The Orange have not been bowl-eligible since 2013. A full season for Dungey is a must for Syracuse to have any chance to get back, but just in case, best catch him in the regular season.

    Joe Dineen, LB, Kansas

    The fifth-year senior has played on teams that have won six games in four seasons. He also lost most of his 2016 season, when he was poised for a breakout as team captain, to hamstring injury. That big breakout came last season when Dineen led the nation in solo tackles per game (7.6) and set a school record with 25 tackles for loss. Yes, the Jayhawks' defense spends a lot of time on the field and that inflates some stats. But Dineen had almost twice as many tackles as any other Kansas defender. Also, deserving of a shoutout on Kansas is defensive tackle Daniel Wise (16 tackles for loss and seven sacks), who is probably an even better pro prospect than Dineen.

    Denzel Mims, WR, Baylor

    The Bears managed just one victory in 2017, but Mims was a problem for opponents. He caught 61 passes for 1,087 yards and eight touchdowns. His three-touchdown performance against Oklahoma gave the Sooners a legitimate scare. Mims was by far Baylor's best receiver last season, but this year the Bears hope the return of senior Chris Platt from injury and the addition of Tennessee transfer Jalen Hurd, the running back-turned-receiver, gives them one of the best sets of pass-catchers in the Big 12.

    Stanley Morgan Jr., WR, Nebraska

    Cornhuskers fans are looking toward a hopeful future with new coach Scott Frost after going 4-8 last season under Mike Riley. There is much rebuilding to do, and Nebraska has a difficult schedule in 2018 with road games at Michigan, Ohio State and Wisconsin. A major turnaround would take a minor miracle by Frost. Morgan, though, should be one of the best receivers in the Big Ten as a senior. He caught 61 passes for 986 yards and 10 touchdowns last year.

    Trey Smith, OT, Tennessee

    Smith stepped into the Volunteers' starting lineup last season as a freshman and played like a veteran. He started games at guard and tackle, and during an ugly year in Knoxville, Smith's performance was a thing of beauty. The offseason provided a scare. He was treated for blood clots in his lungs. Cleared to play, Smith is a 6-foot-6, 320-pound building block for new coach Jeremy Pruitt.

    ---

    EXTRA POINT

    Six more players to watch on teams that had losing records last season:

    Trevon Brown, WR, East Carolina

    Trevor Morris, LB, Rutgers

    Steven Montez, QB, Colorado

    Kyle Shurmur, QB, Vanderbilt

    Lexington Thomas, RB, UNLV

    Oshane Ximines, DE, Old Dominion
    Remember the 3 G's Gambling, Golf, Girls not in any particular order.....

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    QB Starting Props
    August 13, 2018

    By Bookmaker

    The college football season is right around the corner, and some high-profile quarterback battles will soon find a resolution. These coaching decisions can often make or break a season, and even with spring and fall practices to evaluate, many of the choices can cause a lot of sleepless nights.

    The most high-profile battle is the one going on at powerhouse Alabama. Jalen Hurts led the Crimson Tide to the national championship game a year ago, but after the team fell behind, Tua Tagovailoa came in and rallied the team to victory for the title. Both quarterbacks have returned and are competing for the starting spot, with Tagovailoa the heavy favorite to win the job.

    There is a close battle at Florida State, in which Deondre Francois is aiming to hold off James Blackman. Florida has a quarterback battle in which Feleipe Franks is the favorite but is no given to be the starter.

    Arkansas, LSU, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Texas A&M, UCLA and USC are among the other high-profile programs that are looking to replace their quarterbacks are are looking for a quarterback to seize the starting reins.

    College football coaches have to make a lot of big decisions but anointing the correct starting signal-caller is among the biggest. Most of the starters should start coming into clear focus in the next couple of weeks in college football gambling.

    College Football Starting Quarterback Odds - per BookMaker.eu


    Alabama
    Jalen Hurts +400
    Tua Tagovailoa -650

    Arkansas
    Ty Storey +250
    Cole Kelley -350

    Florida
    Emory Jones +878
    Kyle Trask +281
    Feleipe Franks -267

    Florida State
    Bailey Hockman +1100
    James Blackman +155
    Deondre Francois -160

    LSU
    Justin McMillan +1500
    Lowell Narcisse +900
    Myles Brennan +500
    Joe Burrow -350

    Notre Dame
    Ian Book +900
    Brandon Wimbush -3500

    Ohio State
    Tate Martell +850
    Dwayne Haskins -2500

    Oklahoma
    Austin Kendall +700
    Kyler Murray -1500

    Oklahoma State
    Dru Brown +1600
    Spencer Sanders +650
    Taylor Cornelius -750

    Texas A&M
    Kellen Mond +280
    Nick Starkel -400

    UCLA
    Devon Modster +125
    Wilton Speight +150
    Dorian Thompson-Robinson +300

    USC
    Jack Sears +1100
    Matt Fink +190
    J.T. Daniels -200

    Odds Analysis


    There are a lot of big-time programs looking for their next quarterback. Alabama has the quarterback battle that has gotten national attention. Hurts spoke out in frustration recently, and while coach Nick Saban said that won’t have any effect on the competition, it seems to point toward Tagovailoa behind ahead in the battle.

    UCLA has an interesting competition going on. Josh Rosen was drafted in the first round and his replacement would love to have similar success. Wilton Speight transferred from Michigan and has the most experience among the signal-callers, but doesn’t exactly fit the mold of a Chip Kelly dual threat quarterback. With that in mind, last year’s backup, Devon Modster, is the right pick and at good odds since there is no clear favorite.

    Kyler Murray is in an interesting position at Oklahoma. He was drafted by the Oakland Athletics and given a big signing bonus but was allowed to return to the Sooners to play one more football season. Murray is the favorite to take over for Heisman Trophy winner Baker Mayfield. Murray looked good in his chance to see the field in 2017 and should win the job as he is an ultra-talented player.

    There could be a possible upset brewing at Florida State. Deondre Francois was the starter last season but suffered a serious injury to his patellar tendon which sidelined him for the year. He has talent but if the injury is an issue it could allow for James Blackman to grab the starting spot.

    There is no reason to waste time making wagers on some of the competitions which have clear favorites. Brandon Wimbush is clearly the front-runner for the Notre Dame job but at -3500 he has tremendous odds and it doesn’t pay off anything to be correct.

    Morsels of information about all of these competitions should trickle out daily at this point so keep up to date on the latest news when making the wagers in college football betting.
    Remember the 3 G's Gambling, Golf, Girls not in any particular order.....

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    Handicapping TCU (7.5)
    August 15, 2018


    The TCU Horned Frogs could take a step back this season after playing in the Big 12 Championship Game last season. The Horned Frogs lost a number of key players and oddsmakers don’t think TCU is going to be as good this season, as they set the win total for the Horned Frogs at 7.5.

    Let’s look at the TCU schedule to see if they will go over or under that number.

    2018 TCU Horned Frogs Regular Season Win Total
    7.5 (over -120)
    7.5 (under -100)


    2018 TCU Horned Frogs Schedule Analysis

    Week 1 – Sept. 1 vs. Southern

    The opener is a cakewalk for TCU, as Southern is no threat. They are an FCS team and an FCS team isn’t going into Fort Worth and coming out with a win. The last time Southern played a marquee team they were routed 48-6 by Georgia in 2015.

    Week 2 – Sept. 8 at SMU (Dallas)

    This game will be closer than the opener, but SMU doesn’t have the defense to contain the Horned Frogs. It could be a high scoring game, as SMU has a new head coach in Sonny Dykes who is known for offense.

    Week 3 – Sept. 15 vs. Ohio State (AT&T Stadium - Arlington, Texas)

    This will be a huge game for TCU as they take on the Buckeyes in Arlington. The Buckeyes are considered national title contenders, but who knows what the Urban Meyer mess is going to do to the Buckeyes.

    Week 4 – Sept. 22 at Texas

    The conference opener will be interesting, as Texas is expected to be improved this season. This will be a good litmus test for both teams. TCU has not lost to Texas since 2013.

    Week 5 – Sept. 29 vs. Iowa State

    The Horned Frogs will be home favorites in this game, but Iowa State won eight games last season and is no pushover. The Horned Frogs will be looking for revenge, as they lost in Ames last season.

    Week 7 – Oct. 11 vs. Texas Tech

    The Horned Frogs won 27-3 at Texas Tech last season and there is no reason to think things will be any different this season, especially with this game taking place in Fort Worth.

    Week 8 – Oct. 20 vs. Oklahoma

    This is a rematch of the Big 12 title game. The Sooners won both games against TCU last seasons, but this time TCU is at home and the Sooners will have a new quarterback.

    Week 9 – Oct. 27 at Kansas

    The Horned Frogs rolled 43-0 at home last season. They did struggle two years ago at Lawrence, but this is still a game TCU should win easily.

    Week 10 – Nov. 3 vs. Kansas State

    If the Horned Frogs are going to win eight games this season this is a game they need to win. The Wildcats are not nearly as good on the road as they are at home.

    Week 11 – Nov. 10 at West Virginia

    This will be interesting, as the TCU defense will try and slow down Will Grier and the West Virginia offense. The last three meetings in this series have been decided by a touchdown or less.

    Week 12 – Nov. 17 at Baylor

    The Horned Frogs pulled away last season to win 45-22. This is a dangerous game for TCU, as they are coming off the game vs. West Virginia and have OSU next week.

    Week 13 – Nov. 24 vs. Oklahoma State

    The regular season finale might decide which team goes to a major bowl game and which team gets stuck playing in mid-December. The Horned Frogs are at home and they should get this win.

    2018 TCU Horned Frogs Regular Season Win Total Prediction

    The schedule for TCU is really favorable, as the Horned Frogs have a lot of winnable games. TCU should beat Southern, SMU, Iowa State, Texas Tech, Kansas, Baylor and Oklahoma State. That gets them to seven wins and they would need to win just one other game to get to eight wins. Almost all of their remaining games are winnable, so the total for the Horned Frogs may be listed too low for this season. We’ll go over the total for TCU this season.
    Remember the 3 G's Gambling, Golf, Girls not in any particular order.....

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    ACC - Best Bets
    August 15, 2018

    By Bookmaker

    The Clemson Tigers have been one of the most dominant football programs in the country the past few years and more success is expected in 2018. Clemson has been tabbed the favorite to come away with the Atlantic Coast Conference title, although there are some worthy foes attempting to knock the Tigers off.

    The Miami Hurricanes had an impressive year in 2017 and have the type of talent to be nationally ranked this season. The Florida State Seminoles are hoping quarterback Deondre Francois can get back up to speed after a serious injury shortened last season. The Seminoles have talent across the board and could be one of the top challengers.

    The Virginia Tech Hokies are more of a longshot because they lost a lot of talent from last year’s team, but they have a solid program and there are some good players waiting in the wings. Most of the other teams are extreme longshots to win the ACC. The Louisville Cardinals were players the last couple of years but lost superstar quarterback Lamar Jackson to the NFL. His absence will send the team back to the middle of the pack as Louisville was often a one-man wrecking crew with only decent talent around him.

    It would be a very notable development if teams such as the North Carolina State Wolfpack, the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets or the Boston College Eagles were in contention. In the end, Clemson will clearly be the team to beat in college football gambling.

    Odds To Win The ACC - per BookMaker.eu
    Clemson -205
    Miami +508
    Florida State +562
    Virginia Tech +951
    Georgia Tech +3676
    North Carolina State +3676
    Louisville +4000
    Boston College +5000
    Duke +5700
    Wake Forest +5700
    Pittsburgh Panthers +6300
    Syracuse +8500
    North Carolina +12000
    Virginia +23000

    Odds Analysis

    Clemson is going to be a very good team this year no matter what, but stellar quarterback play could lift it into the national championship conversation. Five-star freshman recruit Trevor Lawrence is vying to be the starting quarterback, although it won’t be easy to win that job against senior Kelly Bryant who obviously has much more experience. If either quarterback can consistently move the offense this season, the Tigers could be eyeing a national title. Even at these odds, they are a good bet because it is hard to figure out a way another team surpasses them in the ACC unless Clemson has unforeseen struggles or is hit hard by injuries.

    Miami had a good season a year ago and expectations will be high with many key players back. However, the Hurricanes have some question marks at quarterback, and that is never a good thing. Nothing can torpedo a talented team faster than an erratic passing game, and because of that, Miami should not be the choice to win the division at these odds.

    Florida State is the best choice among the second tier of options as it has a possible star quarterback and plenty of talent on both sides of the ball. North Carolina State is a worthwhile longshot gamble at these odds. They have a star quarterback in Ryan Finley and while the overall talent doesn’t match up to teams at the top, there are times a golden arm can lead a team to some upset wins.

    It would be a surprise if Clemson doesn’t win this conference again because it has a fantastic defense and weapons offensively. The Tigers are so deep across the board that they must be the pick even at odds that won’t result in a huge payout. When it comes to the ACC Championship, it is best to play it safe with one of the most talented teams in the country in college football betting.

    ACC Championship Odds Pick: Clemson Tigers

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    Conference Title Futures
    August 14, 2018

    By Tony Mejia

    College football is creeping up quickly, opening on Aug. 25 with a doubleheader involving three Mountain West schools and new Independent New Mexico State. The Aggies host a Wyoming team looking to replace Top-10 pick Josh Allen, but a half-hour prior, Hawai’I visits Colorado State to get the season started with some high-stakes league play.

    Northwestern-Purdue, UCF-UConn and Virginia Tech-Florida State also fall into the category of playing a conference game in their first action of the season, which ramps up the stakes for coaches to have their teams prepared to avoid the double whammy of falling behind immediately.

    To get in the spirit of Rams-Rainbow Warriors and the other Week 1 league games, here's a look at conference championship futures.

    The Westgate SuperBook has odds up to select the championship game winner in all 10 leagues, so if you’re looking to get in early, here’s who I like to emerge with conference titles.

    American
    Favorite: Central Florida (5/4)
    Other top options: Houston (5/2), Memphis (3/1), South Florida (7/1), Navy (8/1)
    Longshots: Temple (25/1), Cincinnati (30/1), Tulane (40/1), SMU (50/1), Tulsa (100/1), UConn (300/1), East Carolina (500/1)

    Analysis: UCF isn’t likely to finish undefeated again, but it’s not impossible. If they hit the ground running, there’s a good chance to they’ll be favored in every game this season until their Nov. 23 rivalry game against South Florida down in Tampa. With QB McKenzie Milton powering new head coach Josh Heupel’s high-octane offense, the Knights are going to be formidable and are a deserving favorite. Houston is UCF’s most likely opponent as the West Division favorite, so since the championship game is hosted by the team with the top conference record, the Cougs having the tougher schedule hurts their chances. Although DT Ed Oliver is perhaps the best player in the country, I wouldn’t back UH here. Ride the Knights or take a shot at the that hosts both division favorites, Memphis. The Tigers are well-coached but looking for a quarterback to follow in the prolific footsteps of Riley Ferguson and Paxton Lynch.

    ACC
    Favorite: Clemson (1/2)
    Other top options: Miami, FL (3/1), Florida State (6/1), Virginia Tech (12/1)
    Longshots: Georgia Tech (25/1), NC State (30/1), Louisville (30/1), Duke (40/1), Boston College (50/1), Wake Forest (60/1), Syracuse (60/1), Pitt (60/1), UNC (80/1), Virginia (300/1)

    Analysis: Give Dabo Swinney a ton of credit. Despite being surrounded by programs that pull out all the stops for football to dispel the notion that this is still a basketball conference, the Tigers have attained juggernaut status. Kelly Bryant effectively replaced Deshaun Watson and will now have some healthy competition to push him with highly touted freshman Trevor Lawrence on board. The defensive line figures to be the best in the country, so look for Brett Venables to continue getting results. If you insist on fading favored Clemson, go crazy and take a shot with Virginia Tech. The Hokies must replace talent on defense but have exceptional coordinator Bud Foster to lean on in addition to talented QB Josh Jackson, who is likely to make significant in Year 2 under head coach Justin Fuente.

    Big Ten
    Favorite: Ohio State (5/4)
    Other top options: Wisconsin (5/2), Michigan (3/1), Penn State (5/1), Michigan State (10/1)
    Longshots: Nebraska (30/1), Iowa (30/1), Northwestern (40/1), Purdue (100/1), Minnesota (100/1), Indiana (500/1), Maryland (1000/1), Illinois (2000/1), Rutgers (2000/1)

    Analysis: Urban Meyer’s future at Ohio State hasn’t kept the Buckeyes from being favored to win the league since their defense will be fierce and RB J.K. Dobbins will be a force. There are question marks since the Meyer situation and a potential QB carousel loom as potential season-long distractions, so taking a shot at making some money is advisable here. Wisconsin is loaded up front and returns top RB Jonathan Taylor, who ran for 1,977 yards last season, while Penn State brings back the league’s top passer in Trace McSorley. The Nittany Lions lose Saquon Barkley, but do have both Ohio State and Wisconsin coming into Happy Valley this Fall. If you're looking for a lottery ticket, taking a shot with Scott Frost getting immediate results out of the 'Huskers is as solid a Hail Mary as there is in any league. If Nebraska gets solid play at QB, it can surprise.

    Big 12
    Favorite: Oklahoma (10/11)
    Other top options: Texas (5/2), TCU (5/1), West Virginia (5/1), Oklahoma State (8/1)
    Longshots: Iowa State (30/1), Kansas State (35/1), Texas Tech (60/1), Baylor (60/1), Kansas (1000/1)

    Analysis: Oklahoma is the heavy favorite despite losing NFL No. 1 pick Baker Mayfield, but there is plenty back to merit the nod, starting with running back Rodney Anderson. QB Kyler Murray has a chance to follow in Mayfield’s Heisman footsteps since he’s got playmakers Marquis Brown and CeeDee Lamb to throw to. If there’s a team capable of taking down the Sooners, West Virginia is the likeliest candidate. Oklahoma has to visit Morgantown on Nov. 23 and may have to deal with snow, potentially slowing them down. A loss still wouldn’t necessarily dismiss OU’s chances to win the title on Dec. 1 at AT&T Stadium, where the Sooners handled TCU easily in ’17.

    Conference USA
    Favorite: Florida Atlantic (10/11)
    Other top options: Marshall (4/1), Middle Tennessee (6/1), North Texas (6/1), UAB (8/1), Louisiana Tech (10/1)
    Longshots: FIU (25/1), Old Dominion (40/1), Southern Miss (40/1), TX-San Antonio (40/1), Western Kentucky (100/1), Charlotte (500/1), Rice (500/1), UTEP (500/1)

    Analysis: Lane Kiffin runs this league. In his first season, he won every single conference clash and dominated the Championship game 41-17 against one of the better North Texas teams in school history. This season should see the Owls again run the table in C-USA play. They’ll have a chance to make national noise in September since they play at Oklahoma and UCF in high-profile games. Back Florida Atlantic to win this league. If you’re interested in hedging or insist on not backing ‘chalk’ here, Middle Tennessee could be interesting since it welcomes FAU into Murfreesboro the week after the duel in Orlando. Perhaps Kiffin’s team runs out of gas wrapping up a taxing month.

    MAC
    Favorite: Northern Illinois (2/1)
    Other top options: Ohio U. (7/2), Toledo (7/2), Miami, OH (6/1), Buffalo (7/1), Western Michigan (8/1), Eastern Michigan (15/1)
    Longshots: Akron (25/1), Central Michigan (25/1), Bowling Green (40/1), Ball State (100/1), Kent State (100/1)

    Analysis: Life after Nebraska has treated Frank Solich well since he’s had great success at Ohio University. The Bobcats aren’t the favorite here due to Northern Illinois but should return to the conference championship game by holding off Buffalo and reigning East champ Akron. NIU has reigning champ Toledo, improving Eastern Michigan and always dangerous Western Michigan to worry about out West, so Ohio will have the easier road behind Canadian QB Nathan Rourke and impressive RB A.J. Ouellette.

    Mountain West
    Favorite: Boise State (4/7)
    Other top options: San Diego State (7/2), Fresno State (5/1), Utah State (8/1), Wyoming (15/1)
    Longshots: Nevada (25/1), UNLV (25/1), Colorado State (30/1), Air Force (50/1), New Mexico (200/1), Hawai'i (300/1), San Jose State (500/1)

    Analysis: This league lost a lot of talent with Wyoming’s Allen (Bills), San Diego State RB Rashaad Penny, who went 27th to the Seahawks after 2,248 rushing yards and 25 touchdowns, and Colorado State WR Michael Gallup (Cowboys) moving on to the pros. That should make it even easier for Boise State and Fresno State to again reach the Mountain West Championship game. The Broncos have great talent back on both sides of the ball but I’d ride the Bulldogs to pull off an upset given their current odds since top WR KeeSean Johnson is capable of teaming with QB Marcus Maryion to steal any game over the course of four quarters.

    Pac-12
    Favorite: Washington (5/9)
    Other top options: Stanford (9/2), USC (9/2), Oregon (8/1), Arizona (12/1), Utah (15/1)
    Longshots: UCLA (30/1), Cal (60/1), Colorado (80/1), Arizona State (100/1), Washington State (100/1), Oregon State (1000/1)

    Analysis: With Chip Kelly, Kevin Sumlin, Herm Edwards and Mario Cristobal on board, this conference has a lot of new blood to get excited about. We’re at least a year away from those guys having a significant impact in leading their schools to a championship game appearance at Levi’s Stadium. For the third time in four years, look for USC and Stanford to meet for the title. That means we’re fading favored Washington, which hosts the Cardinal on Nov. 3 but should struggle to contain Bryce Love as he looks to follow up finishing second for the Heisman with another huge season. I’m backing Stanford to get it done in its backyard after falling 31-28 last December.

    SEC

    Favorite: Alabama (5/9)
    Other top options: Georgia (9/4), Auburn (7/1), Mississippi State (12/1), Florida (20/1)
    Longshots: LSU (25/1), Missouri (30/1), South Carolina (40/1), Texas A&M (40/1), Tennessee (100/1), Arkansas (300/1), Kentucky (300/1), Vanderbilt (500/1)

    Analysis: Alabama lost starters on both sides of the ball from last year’s championship team but have its top two quarterbacks in the mix. We’ll see if everyone can co-exist nicely or whether things go wrong in Tuscaloosa, but I’d stay far away from the 5-to-9 odds currently available. The Crimson Tide have to replace coordinators on both sides of the ball, so while Nick Saban owns a 41-3 record and three title game appearances in as many seasons, this as vulnerable as this group has been. Hosting the Iron Bowl against Auburn should give them the edge in the West Division, but with likely East champ Georgia likely to win the East, the ‘Dawgs appear to be the better option here. Although two talented RBs and eight defensive starters are gone, there’s a ton of talent back for Kirby Smart, including polished QB Jake Fromm back with a year’s experience under his belt. Versatile playmaker D’Andre Swift is electric.

    Sun Belt
    Favorite: Arkansas State (5/4)
    Other top options: Troy (9/5), Appalachian State (5/2), Georgia Southern (12/1), UL-Monroe (12/1)
    Longshots: Georgia State (30/1), UL-Lafayette (30/1), South Alabama (50/1), Coastal Carolina (100/1), Texas State (100/1)

    Analysis: The quirkiest conference in all the land, the Fun Belt, has a clear favorite in Arkansas State and another clear option in Troy. The Red Wolves are led by QB Justice Hansen, whose 37 TD throws and nearly 4,000 yards passing have expectations through the roof. The Trojans went 11-2 last season and won their last seven contests, but must replace a four-year starter at QB in Brandon Silvers. While Neal Brown has a fairly full cupboard, my recommendation is to ride Appalachian State, which returns a stout defense in addition to the conference ‘s top offensive player, RB Jalin Moore. The Mountaineers will likely control their destiny in the regular season’s final two games, hosting Georgia State and Troy.
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