Beginning this week, our chumps will also include an N.F.L. game every week because there’s nothing like chasing that dollar with some bets on Sunday. Check in to The Alabama Take every Friday afternoon to see what our bettors think are the sure bets in college football. It’s a comedy of errors or a joy of winning. Either way, it’s not to be missed.
2022 ATS Record
Blaine Duncan: 2-1 (Week One: 2-1)
TD Wood: 0-3 (Week One: 0-3)
Some classic betting strategies worked well last week, so I’ve got to apply a couple of them again.
Tennessee at Pitt (+6) — Tennessee has the better talent, but I don’t know that the Vols will get a road win against Pittsburgh, who are both underdogs at home and also reigning ACC Coastal Champions. That’s a good combo.
Houston at Texas Tech (-4) — I like the Red Raiders at home, as Houston let UTSA score too many for my liking last week. Tech may not be getting respect because they’re starting a back-up quarterback, but that QB passed for four TDs last week off the bench.
USC at Stanford (UNDER: 67.5) — The Trojans should be explosive under Lincoln Riley, and Stanford rarely scores in high figures. Even if USC wins by sixty, the Cardinal could be held to a lone touchdown.
N.F.L. Game of the Week: Browns at Panthers (Even) — This was the game I had in mind, but I honestly couldn’t determine which way I leaned. The Browns like to start decently and then let their fans down, but the Panthers are at home and Christian McCaffrey could have a decent enough game. It goes back to the rule: if it’s even in the N.F.L., bet the home team. I dread this ‘un.
I am nothing if not on brand. I knew Illinois could be a risky pick, but SDSU and Louisville genuinely surprised me with how inept their performances were. Maybe adding the NFL game will be my good luck charm, I did finish in the top 1% overall in the world last season on ESPN, after all.
USC (-8) at Stanford — Greg mentioned on Takin’ on Sports last week that he thinks the Trojans are gonna roll the Cardinal in Lincoln Riley’s first PAC-12 game, and I tend to agree. Stanford has fallen off a bit in recent years, and USC’s talent level is well above theirs. I think the Trojans make a statement this weekend.
Kentucky (+6.5) at Florida — I think Billy Napier is gonna have the Gators going faster than most expect, but a touchdown favorite over a solid, steady program like Kentucky might be a bit to ask. Teams like to be inconsistent under new coaches, and the Gators will be no different. I still think they win, but would not at all be shocked if Kentucky stole one in The Swamp.
Mississippi State (-10.5) at Arizona — Taking yet another road team, Mike Leach’s Bulldogs looked good last week in their blowout win over Memphis. Arizona looked a lot better than the team of the previous two seasons, but State has a lot more talent that San Diego State, and the late night slot gives the Bulldogs a chance to impress on a national stage. I think it might be close through the first half until State’s superior talent takes over and pulls away.
N.F.L. Game of the Week: Ravens (-6.5) at Jets — Generally, I have a rule to avoid betting on my favorite teams. Bad juju. But, given this ain’t real money, I’m comfortable picking the Ravens over what could turn out to be a pretty bad Jets team. Baltimore was the #1 seed last year before Lamar went down, and that was without the entire starting RB room and both starting corners. They’re not quite 100% healthy yet, but Lamar is poised for a revenge tour season where he reminds everyone why he’s a former MVP and a generational talent.
Note: All games are Against the Spread. Odds are taken from the Caesar’s Sportsbook.
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