Happy week 3 of College football! Texas is good again (probably), OU has already lost, and the Aggies are already butthurt about all the attention Texas is getting and seem primed for disappointing loss against Auburn this week. So life is good for the moment. As an introduction my picks will be based on 4 different mathematical prediction models which I mooch off of a friend. I will sometimes interject my own personal opinion when I write up the picks but I try to stay as objective as possible and let the prediction algorithms do their job. It also means I may not be picking marquee games (such as FSU/Louisville this week) unless the data suggests it. The models I use with explanations for how they report their picks are explained below:
TeamRankings (TR): Picks reported as confidence odds and reported as a percentage. This is what it sounds like – the percentage chance a bet will be correct at a stated line per their model. They are conservative and generally anything above 52-53% is a strong pick from them.
Numbersfire (NF): Picks reported as % return on investment or ROI. This number estimates expected returns for a given amount bet. For instance, betting 1 unit with a ROI of 10%, your expected return would be 1.1 unit. In general, a 0-10% ROI is a mild recommendation, 10-20% is moderate, and anything above 20% they favor heavily.
Sportsline (SL): Picks reported as value which is scaled from 0-100. 0-60 is a C grade pick, 60-80 is a B, and 80-100 is an A value pick. Obviously the higher the stated value, the better they consider the pick.
Lines will be per Bovada. I will recommend bet amounts as a “unit” which basically is a standard amount of money you bet on each game (i.e. 1 unit=$25). How much a unit is worth is up to each individual better and is determined by the size of your bank roll, how much of a gambling problem you have, and the size of your balls.
With that in mind, on to this week’s picks:
Middle Tennessee State @ Bowling Green: Bowling Green +6.5
TR: BG + 6.5 – 53.5% odds
NF: BG +6.5 – 45.5 %ROI
SL: BG +6.5 – 72 value, B grade pick
All three models like Bowling Green here getting nearly a touchdown at home. Numbersfire is particularly boned up to take the Falcons this week with a predicted 45.5% ROI. The line opened at +3.5 but money has steadily come in on Middle Tennessee. I doubt this line goes much higher so now may be the time to pounce.
Bet: 1 unit
Temple @ Penn State: Under 51
TR: Under 51 – 52.8 % odds
NF: Under 51 – 52.3% ROI
SL: Under 51 – 79 value, B grade pick
Another pick heavily favored by Numbersfire and moderately liked by the other two models. The line opened at 48 but the public loves to bet overs and it has steadily climbed to 51 as of now. Temple’s QB comes into the game completing only 47% of his passes and despite a high scoring game against Pitt, none of the models predict Penn State to continue to light up the scoreboard.
Bet: 1 unit
Florida Atlantic University vs. Kansas State: Over 49
TR: Over 49 – 52.6% odds
NF: Over 49 – 15.6% ROI
SL: 91 value, A grade pick
Another totals bet which I have found to be pretty profitable when betting college football. Kansas state is at home and looking for it’s first win so I expect them to be trying to put up points. Florida Atlantic made some plays against Miami previously and may be able to move the ball in this game. All 3 models predict a higher then expected scoring game.
Bet: 2 units
New Mexico State @ Kentucky: Under 66.5
TR: Under 66.5 – 52.1 % odds
NF: Under 66.5 – 39.8% ROI
SL: Under 66.5 – 74 value, B grade pick
Do you like betting unders? I like betting unders. Especially in games I don’t intend to watch. Kentucky is coached by Bob Stoops dumber brother Mark which says all you need to know about their 0-2 start. Kentucky probably gets their first win here but the numbers like the game to stay under.
Bet: 1 unit
UCLA @ BYU: BYU +3
TR: BYU +3 – 53.1% odds
NF: BYU +3 – 27.8% ROI
SL: BYU +3 – 88 value, A grade pick
Bet: 2 units
Never underestimate a bunch of 28-30 year old post mission Mormons in Provo. After spending 2 years getting doors slammed in your face and getting cursed out by foreigners, football seems easy. Did you know UCLA QB Josh Rosen’s dad was a competitive ice dancer? That coupled with the fact that he looks like a 19 year old version of Uncle Rico from Napolean Dynamite is enough for me to bet against UCLA. It helps that all of the models moderately to heavily favor BYU here.
Last Weeks Picks: FAU @ Miami Under (Win), Navy -5 vs. Uconn (Loss), GSU @ Air Force over (win)
Last Week’s Record: 2-1
Overall Record: 2-1