College Football Picks: Big Betting Value Found on Auburn +14.5 vs. Alabama

Joe Gavazzi

Thursday, November 26, 2015 7:04 PM UTC

Thursday, Nov. 26, 2015 7:04 PM UTC

In this article we preview the annual Iron Bowl game between the Alabama Crimson Tide and the Auburn Tigers and provide our Lone Ranger Game of the Week college football pick.

Alabama (-14.5) vs. Auburn 3:30 ET CBS
The Alabama Crimson Tide play the annual Iron Bowl against the arch-rival Auburn Tigers in this 3:30 ET kick as televised on CBS.  As you will see from the analysis below, this is arguably the most contrary play on the board this week.  For, Alabama is playing better than any other team in the nation, while rival Auburn enters today on a downer for consecutive seasons. 

Though Alabama took advantage of their rival for a (55-44) victory last year in Tuscaloosa, it will forever live in the minds and hearts of all who bleed Crimson that it was 2 years ago this weekend that Alabama suffered the pain of the “kick 6,” as relived numerous times on national TV replays.  That occurred when Auburn, on the final play of the game, returned a missed FG the length of the field for a (34-28) victory which launched them into the SEC Championship game and a date with Florida St. for the Championship.

The Tigers used that momentum for a 6-1 SU start to last season, but a (41-38) loss on this field to A&M, as 24 point home favorite, spun the Tigers’ season into a 1-4 SU, 0-5 ATS finish from which they have never recovered this season.  Though they qualified for Bowl eligibility last week with a (56-34) win vs. Idaho, they remain just 7-10 SU since that Texas A&M loss LY on a 2-14 ATS slide.  There has been slippage on both sides of the ball, as Auburn allows 181/4.5 overland (death against the Alabama ground game), a total of 27 PPG and a total of 418 YPG.  Of a greater concern is an Auburn offense that has performed well below the expectations under offensive guru HC Malzahn.  After averaging 37 PPG and nearly 500 YPG with Malzahn at the helm in the first 2 seasons, Auburn is averaging just 28/377 this year.

As noted above, Alabama is playing as well as any team in the nation right now.  On September 19th, as 7 point home favorite, the Tide lost (43-37) to Ole Miss.  Since that time, they have reeled off 8 consecutive victories, including defining wins of 13 or more points vs. Georgia, Arkansas, Texas A&M, LSU and Mississippi St.  Since Clemson remains No. 1 in the polls, however, there is ample motivation for Saban and his minions to post a season-defining victory.

With those facts well-known to all, it is a short leap for the public to back what they figure to be a minor impost to the fortunes of the Crimson Tide.  That, in turn, leaves the betting window wide open for you, me and the Lone Ranger in the week’s biggest contrary play on the CFB card.  As a result, I invite you to put the college football odds in your favor and join me with my college football pick on the Auburn Tigers as my CFB Lone Ranger Game of the Week.

College Football Picks: Auburn +14.5 at Pinnacle

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