Last Week in Review By Dr. Senkbeil
Counting the other games not discussed, I was in the mid 60s for a percentage against the spread last week. That is still not great but not bad. Home teams dominated the big games and that home trend has continued. When in doubt, take the home team.
This week is a big letdown after last week. Not a lot of exciting games and many FCS opponents the week before a big game on the 25th. Some of those FCS lines are interesting though. With a huge game on the horizon, why run up the score on FCS U?
Weekend of 11/18/17 game lines as of Wednesday 11/11 1pm EST:
- Michigan at Wisconsin -7.5
Prediction: Wisconsin 27 Michigan 17
Sagarin: Wisconsin by 16
This is the game of the week. Wisconsin 3 (35,1) has the best defense in the nation after Bama has tumbled because of injuries. Michigan 16 (53,6) is similar to Wisconsin, so the Badgers will play another game without facing elite skill talent. You beat Wisconsin by having superior athletes and Michigan does not this year. Ohio State does, but Ohio State keeps tripping over itself and then suddenly flashing its enormous potential. Badgers beat Michigan, but beware if the focused Ohio State shows up in a few weeks.
- Rutgers +10.5 at Indiana
Prediction: Indiana 20 Rutgers 17
Sagarin: Indiana by 4
These 2 teams are almost the same. Rutgers (121,42) and Indiana (101,30) are defensive so the under of 49.5 might be a good play here, especially since Rutgers vs PSU last week totaled 41. Furthermore, I like the 10.5 Rutgers gets and they covered last week. Indiana wins but it is ugly and low scoring.
- UCF-14 at Temple
Prediction: UCF 42 Temple 17
Sagarin: UCF by 26
The Golden Knights 5 (2,65) covered for 8 straight weeks before recently beginning to apply the brakes. This team is really good and I wish they had the opportunity to prove it. Temple 85 (102, 53) is only a 14 point dog? I think that line will creep up. UCF!
- Virginia +19.5 at Miami
Prediction: Miami 31 Virginia 14
Sagarin: Miami by 33
Miami 9 (18,16) is 3rd in the playoff standings and now has to settle down after a huge win. They finally looked good after playing so many lackluster games against weaker competition. UVA 67 (88,44) has lost 3 of its last 4, and has not looked good in a month. Miami has a short week with a Friday road trip to Pitt. For that reason, I will pick them to win by 17, but this line is about right.
- UL Monroe +37 at Auburn
Prediction: Auburn 59 LA Monroe 28
Sagarin:Auburn by 45
Coin: UL Monroe
Auburn 6 (32,4) finally showed us the team it is capable of being. The Iron Bowl is next week, so why risk injuries against LA Monroe? First stringers out by halftime 42-7? La Monroe 94 (13,126) has enough offense for a backdoor cover in this one in the 4th quarter but Auburn can name its score if it wants.
- Mercer +47 at Bama
Prediction: Bama 52 Mercer 13
Sagarin: Bama by 51
See above. Mercer is a decent FCS team at 149 in Sagarin and ranked ahead of 8 FBS teams, including Kansas. They lost to Auburn 24-10 in September, but Auburn had 5 turnovers and was not yet a functional offense. They lost to Georgia Tech by 25. Bama 2 (19,3) is more injured than I can ever remember and they need to rest.
- Delaware State +53.5 at Florida State
Prediction: FSU 49 Delaware State 7
Sagarin: FSU by 51
That is a lot of points! WVU beat Delaware State 59 – 16 with a top 10 ranked OE. FSU 79 (112,45) has a bad offense so unless the defense score 3 times, how do they win by that many points?
- Iowa State -9 at Baylor
Prediction: Iowa State 28 Baylor 10
Sagarin: Iowa State by 25
Coin: Iowa state
Iowa State 41 (57,32) has lost 2 frustrating close games in a row. Baylor 109 (82,114) plays tougher at home but they lost last week to Texas Tech by 14. 9 points sounds really good.
- Illinois at Ohio State -41
Prediction: Ohio State 56 Illinois 10
Sagarin: Ohio State by 41
Coin: Ohio state
Who is Ohio State? You get destroyed at Iowa and then come back home and absolutely embarrass Michigan State. How about some consistency? The Buckeyes are once again the most statistically explosive team in the country 1 (4,14). I think they see the light and can smell that with a Big10 title they will probably get into the playoff. That means they have to be consistent and keep impressing voters. That means big wins. Illinois 112 (122,69) suffers in this one…OR the unfocused Buckeyes showup and only win by 14
- Mississippi State -11.5 at Arkansas
Prediction: MSU 37 Arkansas 17
Sagarin: MSU by 18
We shall not talk about last week. Arkansas 99 (52,110) continues to stink and be a popular team to pick against each week. State 18 (54,15) is good enough to comfortably win this game if they are not too dejected after last week.
- Texas A&M +2.5 at Ole Miss
Prediction: Texas A&M 45 Ole Miss 41
Sagarin: Texas A&M by 7
Coin: Ole Miss
aTm 57 (64, 68) got their qb Starkel back from a week 1 injury. They are a different team with Starkel. The Ole Miss 51 (6, 117) offense has been on fire the last 3 games and they will score at home, but how do they keep aTm from scoring? The over is 68 and that sounds easily doable. Rumors about Sumlin’s job security will either fuel this team or sink it, and that is an uncertainty. I say they rally around Sunlin and finish the season strong.
- Missouri -8.5 at Vanderbilt
Prediction: Missouri 48 Vanderbilt 14
Sagarin: Missouri by 4
Missouri 34 (9,97) has turned their season around and their early season schedule was pretty rough. From 1-5 to 5-5 and still hot, they are blowing out bad teams. Vanderbilt 81 (80,66) is also bad lately and 0-6 in the SEC so why just 8.5 points? Missouri’s average margin of victory in their 4 game win streak has been 38 points.
- SJSU at Colorado State – 33
Prediction: Colorado State 55 SJSU 14
Sagarin: Colorado State by 33
Copied from last week since it worked well: At this point, take whomever is playing SJSU 128 (127,120) to cover. Colorado State 50 (17, 105) should do it with room to spare
- Oklahoma at Kansas -36.5
Prediction: OU 56 Kansas 28
Sagarin: OU by 52
I picked against Kansas 122 (125,101) last week and they covered at Texas. The Oklahoma 10 (1,116) offense is the most efficient in the history of college football and they are most likely headed to the playoffs. Their defense must play better if they want to win the national title. OU has WVU at home next week and then the Big 12 championship but 36.5 against Kansas seems reachable even with Mayfield subbing out at the half. Kansas has covered 2 of their last 3 so I will pick Kansas to score enough late in the game and backdoor cover.
- UAB +10.5 at Florida
Prediction: Florida 27 UAB 24
Sagarin: Florida by 9
UAB 56 (69,47) is still flying high with 7 wins and now heads to reeling Florida 100 (105,80) in search of win 8. Why not? That half point might help. UF needs to avoid another Georgia Southern meltdown from several years ago or this might be just as embarrassing.
- Kentucky +21.5 at Georgia
Prediction: Georgia 42 Kentucky 21
Sagarin: Georgia by 29
Georgia 7 (25,8) finally ran into a good defensive team that could stop their running game. They are not out of the playoff yet since they get the SEC west winner and a chance to punch their ticket. They need to impress the committee, but more importantly also not get banged up for Georgia Tech the week after and then either Auburn or Bama. Better take this one easy. Kentucky is 7-3 and 76 (65,88) so they are not awful but have played a weak schedule. UGA wins but I like that half point.
Other lines not discussed:
Northwestern -7.5 UMASS +4 Southern Miss -17
South Alabama -5 Arkansas State -26.5 UNC -21.5
Arizona State -7.5 West Virginia -3.5 TCU -7
Be sure to keep your eye out for our weekly blog with Dr. Senkbeil’s picks every Thursday. Challenge your college buddies and coworkers on your Alma Mater’s game and raise money for charity in the process! Don’t have the GoodBookey app? Download it below. Talk some smack and give back!