Last week: 6-8 ATS, 7-7 over/under
Season to date: 14-16 ATS, 15-14-1 over/under
What, you were expecting something other than mediocrity?
Bad Gambling Advice had a typical week, while I got creamed in the staff pick ‘em last week. The reason for the disparity was my going 4-1 on SEC-vs.-FCS games, correctly picking Auburn and Oklahoma to obliterate their FCS opponents, while also correctly understanding that LSU was not about to cover 39 points even against an FCS team. (We’ll note here that the lines on those games frequently aren’t released until the day of the game, and I edit the Bad Gambling Advice post to add those when they’re released.)
There is more of that this week. Will I get bailed out by those picks? We will see.
Nebraska at Oklahoma (11:00 AM CT, FOX)
The thing to know about this game is that Oklahoma still kind of hates Nebraska, and Oklahoma is a much better football team than Nebraska. The latter is why Oklahoma is capable of blowing Nebraska out; the former is why they won’t go easy on the Huskers.
Score Prediction: Oklahoma 49, Nebraska 21
Picks: Oklahoma -22, Over 62.5
New Mexico at Texas A&M (11:00 AM CT, SEC Network)
Texas A&M will be without starting QB Haynes King, apparently for a while, and Zach Calzada looked... rough against Colorado last week. What better way to get the backup a little confidence than to send him out there against a terrible New Mexico team, which is not going to score much against the Aggie defense.
Score Prediction: Texas A&M 34, New Mexico 0
Picks: Texas A&M -30, Under 50.5
Tennessee Tech at Tennessee (11:00 AM CT, SEC Network+)
Picks: Tennessee Tech +40, Over 52
Chattanooga at Kentucky (11:00 AM CT, SEC Network+)
Picks: Kentucky -32, Over 47.5
SE Missouri State at Missouri (11:00 AM CT, SEC Network+)
Picks: Missouri -34.5, Over 59
Alabama at Florida (2:30 PM CT, CBS)
Sometimes, I see a line and think “there’s no way the underdog actually wins this game, but they’ll make the favorite sweat a bit.” That’s this line. Florida being a 14-point underdog at home, even against Alabama, is something that it’s kind of hard to see them not covering.
Score Prediction: Alabama 38, Florida 28
Picks: Florida +14, Over 59.5
Georgia Southern at Arkansas (3:00 PM CT, SEC Network)
You might see the name “Georgia Southern” and think “that’s a quality G5 team, and they will give Arkansas a good game.” You would be wrong. In the Eagles’ two times out, they barely squeaked by FCS Gardner-Webb 30-25, and then they got obliterated by Willie Taggart-coached Florida Atlantic by a score of 38-6. I expect Arkansas to win by a similar margin.
Score Prediction: Arkansas 31, Georgia Southern 7
Picks: Arkansas -23.5, Under 52.5
Mississippi State at Memphis (3:00 PM CT, ESPN2)
Mississippi State is a surprising 2-0 after coming back to beat Louisiana Tech in Week 1, then beating NC State last week. Their defense might put up a fight against Memphis, but their offense, uh, still does not seem to be clicking on all cylinders.
Score Prediction: Memphis 28, Mississippi State 24
Picks: Memphis +3, Under 64
South Carolina at Georgia (6:00 PM CT, ESPN)
South Carolina is 2-0. This will be a heavy dose of reality.
Score Prediction: Georgia 49, South Carolina 7
Picks: Georgia -31, Over 47
Auburn at Penn State (6:30 PM CT, ABC)
Auburn has obliterated two bad opponents to date. Going to Penn State for a night game is a different animal. Also: James Franklin vs. Derek Mason!
Score Prediction: Penn State 24, Auburn 10
Picks: Penn State -5, Under 53
Central Michigan at LSU (6:30 PM CT, SEC Network)
I have seen nothing this season that leads me to believe that LSU will cover a 19-point spread against a decent MAC team.
Score Prediction: LSU 35, Central Michigan 21
Picks: Central Michigan +19, Under 61.5
Tulane at Ole Miss (7:00 PM CT, ESPN2)
I will simply leave you with this:
Lane Kiffin on Tulane: "This is an SEC team"— Jake Thompson (@JakeThompsonOE) September 13, 2021
Score Prediction: Ole Miss 45, Tulane 35
Picks: Tulane +14, Over 76
Stanford at Vanderbilt (7:00 PM CT, ESPNU)
Based on what we saw last week, Vanderbilt is capable of taking advantage of a team that’s shooting itself in the foot. That is probably not Stanford. Picking against Vanderbilt is not something I enjoy doing, but it’s an acknowledgement that this probably isn’t the greatest matchup for the Commodores.
Score Prediction: Stanford 30, Vanderbilt 14
Picks: Stanford -11, Under 48.5
Rice at Texas (7:00 PM CT, LHN)
One good thing about Texas joining the SEC is that the Longhorn Network will cease to exist. As far as this game goes, well, Texas is probably going to be mad about last week and take it out on Rice — who’s actually somewhat not terrible this year, but isn’t about to compete with Texas.
Score Prediction: Texas 42, Rice 14
Picks: Texas -26.5, Over 53.5