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Weekend Football Picks and Fantasy Football 2020 (February 8-17)

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Friday, 27 September 2019

College Football Week 5 Picks 2019 (September 27-28)

After a couple of difficult weeks I did look through Week 4 of the College Football season and decided I would not take any teams that I was not completely confident about.

It did end with a winning record for the week, but I am sure you can imagine my irritation that the Picks only ended 3-2 rather than 4-1.

The team that hurt the most? Washington State who blew a 32 point lead against the UCLA Bruins and somehow managed to not only fail to cover, but actually lose the game outright. Coupled with the Utah Utes going down in Los Angeles to the USC Trojans, the Pac-12 Conference looks set to miss out of representation in the College Football PlayOffs again.

At this moment Alabama and Clemson are still on course for a return to the PlayOffs and I would suggest Oklahoma and either Wisconsin or Ohio State will make up the foursome to decide the National Championship. However it won't take too much to believe the SEC will have two representatives with both LSU and Georgia looking good, and I am looking forward to seeing the next set of games to see if we get any further clarification on the positions of the leading teams.

I am hoping for better luck with the College Football Picks having seen the UCLA Bruins recover and make one of the biggest comebacks in the history of the sport. Washington State basically blew the game with the six turnovers when completely in control and there really isn't much you can say about that.

At least it was a winning week, but I expect better than what has been returned in the first four weeks of the season beginning with Week 5 selections.

Duke Blue Devils @ Virginia Tech Hokies Pick: After finishing with a losing record in 2018, there is some pressure on Justin Fuente as Head Coach of the Virginia Tech Hokies. He can't afford a second losing season in a row and the Hokies have bounced back from a surprise defeat to the Boston College Eagles to win back to back games against overmatched opponents.

Losing the only Conference game played so far this season is still going to be on the minds of the players and Virginia Tech have to be wary of facing the Duke Blue Devils who have only had one losing record in the last six seasons. David Cutcliffe has shown himself to be a very strong Head Coach with the way he has revitalised the Duke Football programme, and his team have opened up with a 2-1 record having also bounced back from a Week 1 defeat.

A defeat to the Alabama Crimson Tide can be forgiven and Duke have beaten two teams who they were favoured to get the better of. This is a different kind of test for the Duke Blue Devils, but this is a team who have played well coming out of a Bye Week and they have shown enough in the first three games of the 2019 season to believe they can secure an upset here.

Duke have not had a very good recent record against Virginia Tech, but they did win here in 2015 in Overtime.

A big test for the Head Coach was going to be tailoring the Offense to suit Quentin Harris instead of Daniel Jones who was Drafted to the New York Giants and who had a big first start in the NFL last Sunday. Harris is comfortable running and throwing the ball and he has been playing very well for the Blue Devils since a rough opener against the Crimson Tide.

That ability as a dual-threat Quarter Back has helped the Blue Devils move the ball on the ground along with Deon Jackson and the team should be able to establish the run in this one. They are facing a more experience Virginia Tech Defensive unit than the one that played in 2018, but the Hokies have given up 4.4 yards per carry on the Defensive Line to open the season and that is an area that the Blue Devils will look to exploit.

Keeping the team in third and manageable spots is the best chance for Harris to make some plays through the air against a Hokies Secondary that have looked good to open the season. Some of that may be down to teams being able to run the ball and not being forced to throw from tough positions, but I do think Virginia Tech will win if they are forcing Quentin Harris to play from third and long spots for much of the game.

The Hokies Defensive unit is going to have to step up if Ryan Willis continues to struggle from the Quarter Back as much as he has done. Willis played well in 2018 to think he was going to step up and show improvement in 2019, but he has already thrown four Interceptions compared with the nine throughout the whole of last season and the fans are getting on his back.

Virginia Tech have struggled to run the ball and I am not sure they are going to get a lot out of this Duke Defensive Line and that is going to put more pressure on Willis. I do think the Quarter Back is going to make some plays against the Duke Secondary, but he has not been protected by the Offensive Line as much as he would like and Willis is going to be facing a strong Blue Devils pass rush that might make the plays to give their team a chance to win.

It has not been a good match up for Duke in recent years, but the underdog is 5-1 against the spread in the last six in the series. Virginia Tech have been a strong home favourite under Justin Fuente, but they have failed to cover in that spot twice already this season and Duke are looking for revenge having lost to the Hokies last season.

The Blue Devils are 9-1 against the spread when playing on the road off a straight up win in a non-Conference game and playing with revenge behind them. David Cutcliffe's team have covered in their last four off a rest too and I am going to take the points on offer here in a game where the underdog should have an opportunity or two to perhaps earn the upset outright.

Penn State Nittany Lions @ Maryland Terrapins Pick: A new Head Coach at College Park is trying to help the Maryland Terrapins snap a run of four losing seasons in a row, and a 2-1 start to the season is a positive for Mike Locksley.

The defeat came two weeks ago against the Temple Owls and even getting to a Bowl Game will be a challenge for the Maryland Terrapins without a couple of upsets along the way. They will be looking for one of those on Friday when they host the Penn State Nittany Lions in what should be a special atmosphere at Maryland Stadium with the kids attending the school knowing classes are cancelled on Friday so they can get to the game nice and early.

Maryland are coming off a Bye Week to try and get the Offensive unit back on track after being restricted to 17 points last time out. The win over Syracuse might have raised expectations considering the Offensive output produced on the day, but the Terrapins will be well aware of the strength of the Nittany Lions who just about got to 3-0 two weeks ago when holding off rivals Pittsburgh at home.

The key on this side of the ball is whether Anthony McFarland Jr can find a way to help the Terrapins establish the run in the game. He has been huge for Maryland this season, but the Nittany Lions have held teams to 1.9 yards per carry so far in 2019 and Penn State have to be looking to test the mentality of Josh Jackson at Quarter Back who is coming in off a very poor outing against Temple.

Jackson might be encouraged by some of the numbers Penn State have allowed through the air. Two Defensive Backs were Drafted into the NFL and Penn State have not defended the pass as they would have liked in the early weeks of the season, but on the other hand the Nittany Lions have a pass rush that will be looking to feast on an Offensive Line that allowed four Sacks last time out.

I still expect Maryland to have some success moving the chains and they will feel good about their chances of earning an upset if they can rattle Sean Clifford who did not have the best outing two weeks ago against Pittsburgh. Losing a starting Quarter Back is always difficult for teams playing in the College ranks as you have to rebuild the experience at a key position, but Clifford should be able to have a good game as long as he gets a little bit of help from the skill players around him.

One element for success will be imposing the running game on the Maryland Defensive Line which has impressed in the early goings. They are surpassing expectations so far, but this is a big test for the Terrapins agains the strength of the Penn State team and the Offensive Line which has been able to open up big holes up front.

If they can do that here the Nittany Lions should have enough talent to get past this difficult team and I do think James Franklin would have been working on just getting a few kinks out of the Offensive unit over the last two weeks. He has been strong in bringing teams out of a Bye Week and Penn State had a big road win on a Friday night in Conference play in 2018 to show they can handle the tough occasions.

Penn State have won the last three between these Conference rivals very easily and Franklin's 11-6 record against the spread coming out of a rest with the Nittany Lions is impressive.

On the other hand Maryland are 3-10 against the spread in their last thirteen games out of a Bye Week and are also 6-15 against the spread in their last twenty-one when playing a team with a winning record. I think this might be close through three quarters, but I expect Penn State's talent to come to the fore and I will back the Nittany Lions to earn the win and the cover on the day.

Northern Illinois Huskies @ Vanderbilt Commodores Pick: It was always looking like a big task for the Vanderbilt Commodores to compete with the LSU Tigers in Week 4 and they are looking to bounce back from what has been a tough start to the 2019 season. Derek Mason is yet to have guided Vanderbilt to a winning record as he enters his sixth season as Head Coach and falling into a 0-3 start suggests that is a record that is unlikely to change.

To be fair to Mason no one would have expected much out of games against Georgia, Purdue and LSU with two of those teams chasing a spot in the College Football PlayOffs. Over the next four weeks Vanderbilt have much better looking games before the second Bye Week of the 2019 season and the Commodores will be looking to head into that break at 3-4 at the very least.

First up is this non-Conference game against the Northern Illinois Huskies who are coming out of a Bye Week having started the season with a 1-2 record. Two weeks ago the Huskies were blown out by the Nebraska Cornhuskers and they have also been beaten by the Utah Utes, but Thomas Hammock will point out to his players that Vanderbilt are not up to the same level as those Power 5 teams.

Getting the ground game working will be important for the Huskies who begin Conference play in Week 6 and there is a chance they can do that against the Commodores who have been struggling. While Northern Illinois have only picked up 2.5 yards per carry so far in 2019, Vanderbilt have been gashed by the powerful teams they have faced and they are going to have show considerable improvement to make sure they are not allowing Northern Illinois to dominate the clock and extend drives.

Ross Bowers has made a very good start to the season for Northern Illinois at Quarter Back and he is facing an opponent who have issues in the Secondary. A lot of the better players from 2018 have moved on and Vanderbilt have allowed 361 passing yards per game so expect to see Bowers having some strong numbers even behind an Offensive Line that have struggled again having done the same in 2018.

Establishing the run has also been a problem for the Vanderbilt Commodores and it is an area that Mason wants to see improving if his team is going to get anywhere near the 6 wins they managed last season. There have been flashes of success, but nothing as consistent as the Head Coach would want, but Vanderbilt can get on track in Week 5 against a Huskies Defensive Line allowing almost 5 yards per carry on the year.

Running the ball with some consistency will be a big help for the Quarter Back Riley Neal who has only produced three Touchdowns through the air for Vanderbilt since transferring from the Ball State Cardinals. He will be hoping his new team and the superior talent can help him get the better of the Huskies having played in the same Conference as them during this time with the Cardinals, but Neal also has to be a little better himself if he is going to produce better numbers than he has so far.

The accuracy has been a bit of a problem, but this week he is not facing a Power 5 Conference Secondary, but the Huskies one that has allowed 230 passing yards per game and who have had little pass rush pressure to speak of. As long as there is some support on the ground, I think Neal will have a very good day too and he can lead the Commodores to a first win of the season as they try and get their season back on track.

Northern Illinois are 4-10 against the spread as the road underdog in their last fourteen in that spot. There are plenty of ugly trends involving the Vanderbilt Commodores, but they have covered in their last four home games as the favourite of less than 16 points and when coming off back to back losses.

Vanderbilt have also covered in their last six as the home favourite of less than 14 points when playing a non-Conference opponent. They are also 5-1 against the spread as a favourite of a straight up loss and I think the Commodores will show they are better than their opening three games by winning this one and covering the spread.

Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders @ Iowa Hawkeyes Pick: There will be a belief in Iowa City that the Iowa Hawkeyes can challenge for a spot in the College Football PlayOffs and perhaps even the National Championship. Winning the Big Ten Conference with an unbeaten record will put the Hawkeyes in the conversation to take part in the final four, and Iowa have opened 2019 with a 3-0 record and have already won their first Conference games.

A narrow win over rivals Iowa State two weeks have kept Iowa unbeaten and the only real concern I would have for the Hawkeyes in this game is that they are overlooking the Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders and instead focused on the big games with Michigan and Penn State which arrive in Week 6 and Week 7 respectively.

Coming out of the Bye Week should mean the players are a little more focused and this game is not the meat in an Iowa State-Michigan sandwich. That break can see the players put the Iowa State rivalry to the back of the mind now and Iowa should be considerably stronger than the 1-2 Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders who are also out of a Bye Week, but who are not a Power 5 Conference team.

Losses to the Michigan Wolverines and Duke Blue Devils by 19 and 23 points respectively highlight the difference in level between the Blue Raiders and the Hawkeyes and I do think that will show up on the scoreboard in this one.

The Bye Week was a chance for the Blue Raiders to try and strengthen a Defensive unit that has not really played to a level they would have liked, but we might not seen any of the improvement until they enter Conference play. Slowing down the run will be important for the Blue Raiders Defensive Line, but I am not sure they are going to have much joy doing that and especially not when they will also been keen on stopping Nate Stanley at Quarter Back from throwing all over the field.

Stanley has had a good opening to the season and he has been well protected by the Offensive Line which bodes well for him and good result in his best game of the 2019 season. He will be aided by Iowa being able to establish the run and I think the Hawkeyes will be able to move the chains up and down the field at will throughout the sixty minutes to be played in Week 5.

While the Blue Raiders can have some successes of their own, we have seen their Offensive output struggle when facing the two Power 5 Conference teams they have played. Middle Tennessee will use Chaton Mobley and Asher O'Hara to try and get the run established against a tough Iowa Defensive Line, but one that is not expected to be as good as the 2018 version.

Asher O'Hara in particular has shown off some talent that was perhaps not expected from him as far as being a passer is concerned, but the Quarter Back is a dual-threat. He didn't thrown an Interception in the loss to Duke two weeks ago and I think O'Hara is going to at least play a clean enough game to give Middle Tennessee a chance to stay with Iowa for a little while.

Ultimately it is a big test for the Blue Raiders on both sides of the ball and they could easily begin to think about the big game with Marshall in Week 6 which is a big game in the CUSA-East Division. If the Hawkeyes begin to pull away that is a concern for the road team and I do like Iowa to cover what looks a very big number on paper.

Iowa also have the big game in Michigan on deck which could just take away some of the focus, and Middle Tennessee would have covered this number in the losses to Michigan and Duke. However I think Iowa will have a little too much on both sides of the ball and the Hawkeyes should control the clock on the way to the cover.

Iowa State Cyclones @ Baylor Bears Pick: The Big 12 has long been a Conference that has perhaps not helped itself as much as the schools competing in it would have liked when it comes to putting themselves in a position to make the College Football PlayOffs. In recent years a Championship Game has been put in place to help, but not being divided into a couple of Divisions does mean the schedules can be very tough to deal with.

It has not prevented the Oklahoma Sooners from making the PlayOffs but a competitive Conference means every game is a big one in the Big 12 and this week we have the Baylor Bears and the Iowa State Cyclones facing off.

The Bears are 3-0 after narrowly holding off the Rice Owls in Week 4, while the Cyclones have bounced back from the heartbreaking one point loss to rivals Iowa Hawkeyes and head into the weekend at 2-1. Iowa State crushed ULM Warhawks in Week 4, and I do think both of these teams will be thinking about the momentum they can pick up by winning this game.

Matt Campbell has led the Cyclones to back to back 8-5 seasons, but the turnaround Matt Rhule produced with Baylor in 2018 was more impressive. After finishing 1-11 in his first season as Head Coach here, Rhule took Baylor to a Bowl Game in 2018 and the 3-0 start means the Bears have to be looking to try and reach the most wins in a single season since 2015.

Both teams have significant number of starters returning from 2018 and that would have meant big ambitions going into the season. The battle in the trenches is going to be very important on both sides of the ball with the strengths of the teams going against each other and the weaknesses doing the same.

The Bears will be looking to continue to use a committee at Running Back to put the Offensive unit in a strong position and the 6.8 yards per carry will be something the Offensive Line prides itself on. Running the ball against the Cyclones Defensive Line is going to be a challenge with many thinking this could be the best Line in the Big 12 and it will be important to try and set up Charlie Brewer to be in a position to make the plays needed from Quarter Back.

Brewer has made a very good start to 2019 and has produced 7 Touchdown passes with zero Interceptions blighting the numbers. He will be able to have some joy throwing against the Iowa State Secondary, but much of the success of the Offense will be down to the Bears at least keeping the Quarter Back in third and manageable spots where he is not being asked to force things. I do think Charlie Brewer will have time behind the Offensive Line as long as Baylor are not stuck in third and long spots and I like the Bears moving the ball in this one.

I do think Iowa State will have their own efficient drives and in the early part of the season they look to have found a way to replace David Montgomery who now plays in the NFL with the Chicago Bears. Having a dual-threat Quarter Back in Brock Purdy is a big plus for the Cyclones and Baylor have to make sure they have someone spying him if they are going to find a way to maintain their Defensive Line's 3.4 yards per carry being given up.

Purdy has really impressed throwing the ball too, but he is going to be throwing into an improving Baylor Secondary who have held teams to under 150 passing yards per game despite forcing opponents into having to throw to keep up with them. The Iowa State Quarter Back has opened the season in good form though so I expect this to be the biggest test for the Bears.

Both teams will feel pretty good about their chances in this game, but I am surprised we are getting as many points with the Bears as the home underdog. Baylor are 7-0 against the spread when playing a Conference opponent off a non-Conference game.

The Bears are also 7-1 against the spread when set as the underdog off a straight up win and Baylor are playing with double revenge. The underdog is 3-1-1 against the spread in the last five in the series between these two teams on the football field too and I am going to take the points on offer in what should be a close and competitive game.

Ohio State Buckeyes @ Nebraska Cornhuskers Pick: When Urban Meyer retired and left Ryan Day as the new Head Coach of the Ohio State Buckeyes there was a feeling of change in the air in the Big Ten. The Buckeyes had won the last two Conference Championships, but Dwayne Haskins also left for the NFL having been Drafted by the Washington Redskins and the team were coming back with 4 starters on the Offensive side of the ball.

It led to many tipping a new Big Ten East Division winner, but the Michigan Wolverines have looked very disappointing to open 2019 and it is Ohio State who are the only team in the Conference at 4-0 so far. The Buckeyes play a couple more games before they head into the first Bye Week of 2019 and they will be looking to put a second Conference road win on the board.

That is not going to be straight-forward when they face the Nebraska Cornhuskers who are expected to bounce back from consecutive 4-8 seasons. Scott Frost's team held off the Illinois Fighting Illini in Week 4, but they are still surprisingly only 3-1 having lost to the Colorado Buffaloes for a second season in a row.

Nebraska have looked better the last two weeks and they are 1-0 in the Conference, while the chance to host this game is going to pump up the fans. This is certainly a team on course for a return to a Bowl Game, but Nebraska fans will be heading to Memorial Stadium looking for the biggest win since beating Oregon in the early weeks of the 2016 season.

Adrian Martinez will have something to prove at Quarter Back for the Cornhuskers with new headlines coming out this week that Ohio State were not convinced enough to want to recruit him despite thinking about it. This is a dual-threat Quarter Back, but Martinez and the Cornhuskers are not going to find it easy to establish the run against the Ohio State Defensive Line that is holding teams to 1.7 yards per carry.

Last season the Buckeyes Defensive Line struggled to stop the run, but the feeling was that they were going to be much improved in 2019 and that strength up front is going to be key to force Martinez to try and beat them through the air. Adrian Martinez has shown enough passing skills to believe he can have success throwing the ball, but being in third and long will mean facing an intense Ohio State pass rush and behind an Offensive Line that has struggled to protect him.

With 9 returning starters on the Defensive side of the ball, Ohio State look like they could be amongst the very best in the College Football ranks. They will certainly believe their Defense can at least limit the drives that the Cornhuskers are able to put together and Ohio State have shown they can turn the ball over too which may be a key to overcoming what looks a very big spread.

The feeling was that the Ohio State Defensive unit would be fine this season with a year of experience under the belt for many of the starters. Offensively was a different question, but so far the Buckeyes have shown they are going to be strong on that side of the ball too.

JK Dobbins had over 1000 yards on the ground in 2018 and he has almost 500 yards already in 2019 despite not even reaching the halfway mark of the season. It looks like the Offensive Line is going to be stronger in 2019 too to aid Dobbins and I do think they can challenge this Nebraska Defensive Line far more than the other four opponents the Cornhuskers have faced.

A part of the problem for Nebraska is their Secondary has not really played to the level they would have wanted and trying to slow Justin Fields at Quarter Back is going to be difficult enough. It might mean they can't focus on clamping down on the run and I do think Ohio State are going to strike the balance that will see them in a position to move the chains with some consistency throughout the game.

It should be the kind of consistency that helps the Buckeyes produce an eye-catching win in Week 5 and only improve their standings in the votes for the top teams in the nation. Justin Fields can make enough plays to open things up for Dobbins on the ground and I do think the Defense can make enough plays to force Nebraska drives to stall.

You would think Nebraska would be a powerful home underdog to back, but that is not the case in recent seasons and two years ago they were crushed by Ohio State here as a 24 point underdog. Ohio State are now 4-1 against the spread in the last five in the series between these teams and Nebraska are just 4-12 against the spread in their last sixteen home games.

Ohio State have some very strong trends that favour them and I just think they are going to be the more balanced Offensively which can see them sustain drives and eventually pull clear for a very good looking win.

Kentucky Wildcats @ South Carolina Gamecocks Pick: With the Florida Gators and the Georgia Bulldogs sitting in the SEC East it is no surprise that the Kentucky Wildcats and South Carolina Gamecocks don't have bigger ambitions than earning a Bowl bid in the 2019 season. Neither was picked as contenders in the SEC East in pre-season and both the Gamecocks and Wildcats have already dropped two Conference games in the first four weeks of the season.

That means South Carolina head into Week 5 with a 1-3 record and the Kentucky Wildcats are at 2-2 as they both try and move a little closer to the six wins needed to become Bowl eligible. Both schools are on three year runs of making the Bowl season, but this game could be an important one for the two teams in determining whether they can extend that run later this year.

It feels like a much bigger game for South Carolina who were upset by North Carolina in Week 1 of the season and have a difficult schedule remaining. Looking through it I already struggle to see where four more wins are coming from assuming they are able to win this game, and that might mean Will Muschamp is under some pressure as Head Coach if ending with a worse record for the third season in a row.

Mark Stoops has done a fantastic job with the Kentucky Wildcats, a school that are much more renowned for the Basketball team rather than the Football one. With two wins on the board, I think the Wildcats are going to be good enough to reach the six wins they need even if they drop this one, but Kentucky won't come into Week 5 with little belief considering they have had the better of the South Carolina Gamecocks five years in a row.

Four of those wins have come as the underdog so this situation won't bother Kentucky who are looking to bounce back from consecutive Conference losses as their hosts are. The more competitive losses have been the Kentucky ones so this is a team that may feel they are closer to turning a corner, but Muschamp has the more experienced team.

One element that does raise some doubts about which may this game is going to go is the fact that both teams are starting back up Quarter Backs now. Losing Jake Bentley was a blow for the South Carolina Gamecocks considering he threw for over 3000 yards in 2018, but Ryan Hilinski has come into the team and the Offensive output has not suffered as much as you may have expected.

Hilinski is inexperienced so you can't be too down on him for throwing 3 Interceptions, but he has 5 Touchdown passes and this is perhaps one of the easier SEC match ups he could be facing. The Kentucky Wildcats Defensive unit returned in 2019 with just 4 starters from last season and some of the better players moving to the NFL was always going to have an impact on them.

There has been an inability from the Defensive Line to slow down the run in the early part of the 2019 season and I do think South Carolina will have plenty of success running the ball straight at the Wildcats. That is important for their young Quarter Back as he can be placed in third and manageable spots and it will slow down the pass rush which has had an impact on the South Carolina Offensive Line.

With short yardage situations in front of him, Hilinski should be able to get the ball out of his hands quick enough to attack a Secondary that has allowed almost 250 passing yards per game in the first four weeks of 2019. That should give the Gamecocks a chance to move the chains at will throughout this SEC game and it will put pressure on the Kentucky Offense to try and keep up with them.

Terry Wilson might have offered big problems for the Gamecocks, but the dual-threat Quarter Back has been lost for the season. That means Sawyer Smith has been given the keys to the Offense for the Wildcats and he showed enough with the Troy Trojans in 2018 to believe he could prevent Kentucky from slipping too much.

The Wildcats have lost both games Smith has started at Quarter Back, and the 4 Touchdown passes along with 4 Interceptions is a bit of a concern. If the Gamecocks Defensive Line can get things right this week, the pressure may be on Smith to move the chains with South Carolina only allowing 3.7 yards per carry despite having Alabama and Missouri already in the books on the schedule.

It will be important for South Carolina to remain stout up front and while I expect them to be challenged by the Kentucky Offensive Line, I also think they can clamp down just enough to force Smith to beat them through the air. The Quarter Back might have success doing that considering the South Carolina Secondary has allowed 290 passing yards per game, but being in third and long spots will be the time for the Gamecocks to get after Smith and try and get the better of an Offensive Line that has been better in run blocking than pass protection.

Sawyer Smith will also have to be aware of turnovers, like Ryan Hilinski, and I do feel that is the 'x factor' that is going to decide the outcome of the game. Whichever team creates the turnovers out of the back up Quarter Backs is going to win the game, but that is where the South Carolina rushing Offense may just be putting Hilinski in the slightly stronger position.

Kentucky have seemingly matched up well with South Carolina in recent years, but this looks a very good chance for the Gamecocks to snap their run of losses.

The Wildcats are 0-10 against the spread when facing a Conference opponent who are coming in off a double digit loss like the South Carolina Gamecocks. Kentucky are also 8-21 against the spread in their last twenty-nine game off a straight up loss, while South Carolina are 7-3 against the spread in their last 10 in the same situation.

It will be a close and competitive game, but I will look for the Gamecocks to edge this and cover the spread in the process too.

MY PICKS: Duke Blue Devils + 2.5 Points @ 1.91 Bet Victor (1 Unit)
Penn State Nittany Lions - 6.5 Points @ 1.91 William Hill (1 Unit)
Vanderbilt Commodores - 6.5 Points @ 1.91 Bet365 (1 Unit)
Iowa Hawkeyes - 23.5 Points @ 1.91 Bet Victor (1 Unit)
Baylor Bears + 3 Points @ 1.86 Bet365 (1 Unit)
Ohio State Buckeyes - 16.5 Points @ 1.86 Bet Fred (1 Unit)
South Carolina Gamecocks - 3 Points @ 1.95 Bet Victor (1 Unit)

Week 4: 3-2, + 0.73 Units (5 Units Staked, + 14.60% Yield)
Week 33-5, - 2.18 Units (8 Units Staked, - 27.25% Yield)
Week 25-7, - 2.57 Units (12 Units Staked, - 21.42% Yield)
Week 13-2, + 0.67 Units (5 Units Staked, + 13.40% Yield)

Season 201914-16, - 3.35 Units (30 Units Staked, - 11.17% Yield)

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