Tough week last week. I went 0-3 against the spread in my column but 27-16 ATS on the season ain’t too shabby.
Just a reminder that I tackle the biggest TV games here because I know those are the ones that get the most betting interest. For my personal picks and more game breakdowns, join me on Periscope @JonnyOddsShark every Saturday at 9:30 a.m. ET where I go over my personal picks for the week. I’m 48-33 ATS with those.
On to this week...
Penn State at Michigan State +9.5, 48 - noon ET, FOX
I’m a little surprised there was so much love here for Sparty but the early money can’t resist a double-digit home dog. For Michigan State to cover, it needs to find a way to score some points because Penn State’s offense can do it all. The good news is that Sparty’s strength is stopping the run, where they rank fourth in the country. The hangover could be real for Penn State also after an upsetting loss to Ohio State last week and rain is expected in the forecast in East Lansing.
Oklahoma at Oklahoma State -3, 76 – 4 p.m. ET, FS1
OU has won in 14 of the last 15 meetings when both teams have been ranked. So there’s a major hex kinda thing hanging over this game if you believe in that sorta thing. I don’t but it will be interesting to see if Oklahoma State starts squeezing a little too tight if this game comes down to the wire. I just think the defense is much better for OK State, in particular the front 7. That’s clear in how they stop the run – they give up about 17 fewer yards per game than the Sooners on the ground.
Virginia Tech at Miami +3, 50 – 8 p.m. ET, ABC
Huge game here that could decide the ACC Coastal and the early money was all over Miami, including mine. Miami owns the longest winning streak in the nation with 12 games but this team still gets flak for not blowing teams out. We’ve got two outstanding defenses smashing heads here – Va Tech ranks second in the nation in scoring D while Miami is 20th – so I expect a low-scoring battle. For me the edge goes to Miami at QB with Malik Rosier coming off his best game but he also banged up his shoulder so I’ll be watching this one a little nervously.
LSU at Alabama -21, 48.5 – 8 p.m. ET, CBS
This is the highest number of points LSU has ever been set as an underdog. Crazy. I think anyone who reads that will instantly think about jumping on LSU and you might be right. But Bama has won six straight meetings and covered seven of the last 10 versus LSU. I just don’t think LSU has the QB to keep up with Bama and the Tide own the best rushing defense in the nation. I’m not sure how many points we’ll see the Tigers put on the board.