College Football Picks: With Weather Looming, Go 'Under' 44.5 In Army-Penn State

Matthew Jordan

Saturday, October 3, 2015 1:03 AM UTC

Saturday, Oct. 3, 2015 1:03 AM UTC

It's likely going to be a very sloppy weather day in State College, Pa., on Saturday afternoon when Penn State steps back out of Big Ten play and faces Army in its final non-conference matchup. PSU is -26.5 on BetOnline's college football odds with a total of 47.

Run, Army, Run!
Just like the other two service academies, Air Force and Navy, Army is pretty much an all-run, no-pass offense. The Black Knights embarrassingly lost to little Fordham 37-35 to open the season, fell at Connecticut 22-17 in Week 2 and lost to Wake Forest 17-14 in Week 3. So as you can see, Army easily could have started 3-0. The Cadets got win No. 1 last Saturday against maybe the worst FBS program in the country, Eastern Michigan. Army took that one 58-36 in Ypsilanti to end a string of 21 straight losses away from home. Army had 654 yards of offense, 556 of those coming via the ground and that triple-option. It marked the most total yards that Army has ever had against a team currently competing in the Football Bowl Subdivision. The 556 rushing yards were third all-time for the Black Knights

The Cadets rushed the ball 71 times -- six players had at least 60 yards, led by Aaron Kemper's 140 on 12 carries -- and passed it only nine times. There was even a school record in that game as kicker Daniel Grochowski set the mark for career PATs. The senior is now 108 of 113 in his career.

Army is now ninth in the country in rushing yards with 294.5 per contest but 125th out of 127 teams in passing yards (Air Force is No. 124 and Navy 127). Quarterback Ahmad Bradshaw leads the team with 341 rushing yards and four touchdowns while completing 11-for-22 passes for 194 yards and another three scores. Bradshaw has only thrown eight passes in the last three games after recording 14 attempts in the loss to Fordham. When Army does pass, big things usually happen. The Black Knights are second in the nation only to Air Force in averaging 21.76 yards per completion.

Army is 3-1 against the spread on college football odds this season and 2-2 'over/under.'


PSU Looking For 4th Straight Win
Penn State was stunned in its season opener at Temple, 27-10, but that loss doesn't look so bad now as the Owls are pretty good. The Nittany Lions haven't been challenged much since then, beating Buffalo 27-14, Rutgers 28-3, and last week San Diego State 37-21.

QB Christian Hackenberg, the potential No. 1 overall pick in next year's draft assuming he declares, had easily his best game of the year, completing 21-for-35 for a season-high 296 yards (previous high was only 141) and three touchdowns. He had been quite disappointing in the previous three games and is hitting only 52.8 percent of his passes. Hackenberg already, though, is second all-time in school passing yards. During the first three weeks, the Nittany Lion passing attack had accounted for two plays of more than 35 yards. Against SDSU, the Lions tallied three plays of 35 yards or more. They also had 21 points off San Diego State turnovers.

Two Penn State running backs were injured against the Aztecs. Saquon Barkley and Akeel Lynch were both hurt in the second quarter. They are both questionable for this game. Barkley leads the team with 373 yards rushing and three scores, while Lynch has 262 yards and two scores.

Penn State ranks 14th nationally against the run, allowing 90.5 yards per game. Senior defensive end Carl Nassib is having an All-American type of season. He entered this year with 2.0 career sacks and 5.5 career tackles for loss. Through four games, Nassib has 7.0 sacks and 9.0 tackles for loss. He is leading the nation in sacks with (1.75 per game) and third in the nation in tackles for loss (2.3 per game).

The Nittany Lions have won nine straight in the series but the schools haven't played since 1979. Army's last win at Beaver Stadium was in 1963, 10-7.

Penn State is 2-2 ATS on college football picks this season and 1-3 O/U.

College Football Picks: The weather is part of Hurricane Joaquin. It's going to rain, it's just a matter of how much. And temperatures will only be in the 40s. Thus I love 'under' 44.5 at BetOnline. I would take the points.

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