Early Saturday Value Plays: Is South Florida This Year’s Western Michigan?

quinton flowers usf

Willie Bee

Friday, September 29, 2017 1:06 PM GMT

Friday, Sep. 29, 2017 1:06 PM GMT

Three Top 25 teams are in action to open the Saturday brunch schedule, and our handicapper has found enough value to make five free college football picks for those three contests.

NCAAF Season Record: 12-11-1 (+0.15)

How about we enjoy a little cheese with our Bloody Mary to start Saturday? And Wisconsin cheese at that as the Badgers host the Northwestern Wildcats in an early tilt, ABC providing the pictures from Camp Randall Stadium in Madison. No. 10 Wisconsin is laying 15 at Bookmaker, other shops listing 14½ for the spread, and a total available in the 48-49 point range.

Following an uninspired win over Florida Atlantic in Week 2, the Badgers went to Provo to put an impressive 40-6 beatdown on BYU. They were laying two touchdowns in that game as well and used a suffocating defense to set up a well-balanced offense that ranks 13th in scoring (43.3 ppg) and 11th in total offense (511 ypg). Northwestern bounced back from disappointment in a resounding loss at Duke as short road chalk by annihilating Bowling Green in one of the Wildcats’ best offensive performances in recent memory.

Except for the inaugural 1890 clash and a brief time the Wildcats ruled in the 1930s and '40s, Wisconsin has controlled this rivalry. That is, until the Big Ten split to two divisions and the schools quit playing each other every year. The home team was the way to bet it before visitors covered the past two seasons, and I believe the value is back with the home side again.

 

USF Double-Digit Chalk For 5th Straight Game

Is South Florida a threat to run the table in the AAC and bully its way into the College Football Playoff? A perfect record might not be enough in the end to get the Bulls to that point, but there’s no questioning their current form as they travel to meet the East Carolina Pirates. CBS Sports Network will carry this one that finds USF -21½ with a lofty 75-76 for the total.

The Bulls have seen their schedule interrupted and modified by Hurricane Irma, but they’ve responded with impressive wins the last two weeks over Illinois and Temple. South Florida has a super ground attack led by tailbacks Darius Tice and D’Ernest Johnson plus quarterback Quinton Flowers, that trio combining for nearly 1,000 yards in the first four games. East Carolina ranks as one of the worst teams defending the run, so it should be a pretty easy decision, right? I’m making this one a Daily Double free college football pick on the Bulls and the ‘under.’

 

Gators, Commodores Playing To Lowest Total In Week 5

Johnny Law caught up with several key players in Gainesville, but that hasn’t affected the NCAA football odds for this week’s collision between the Florida Gators and Vanderbilt Commodores. The Gators went out as low as 7½-point home chalk, that spread now up to 9 at most outlets. ESPN has the noon broadcast with a low 41-41½ for the total.

Florida has won 24 of the last 25 and leads the rivalry 38-10-2. Vandy’s only win in the last quarter century came in 2013, a 34-17 final as a 12-point road ‘dog. The road team has covered eight of nine, ‘over’ bettors cashing 9 of 12. The Commodores just got destroyed by ‘Bama, and the Gators haven’t covered a game yet. I’m going to follow both of the trends the last decade or so with a play on Vanderbilt and the ‘over.’

NCAAF Free Picks: Wisconsin -14½; USF -21½ & Under 76; Vandy +9 & Over 41Best Lines Offered: BetOnline & Bookmaker
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