Take the Points in Troy vs. South Alabama: NCAAF Picks

Jeff Grant

Tuesday, October 21, 2014 12:24 PM GMT

Tuesday, Oct. 21, 2014 12:24 PM GMT

Troy has absolutely nothing to play for the rest of the way, but the college football oddsmakers have placed too high a price on backing South Alabama Friday.

End of an Era

Troy head coach Larry Blakeney has 176 career victories in his 24 seasons  on campus, which is important to consider when making your Week 9 college football picks, but the team is 1-6 SU and 3-4 ATS through seven games of his final year.

 

Blakeney was visibly upset in his most recent press conference after last week’s 53-14 blowout loss to Appalachian State as 7.5-point home favorites, as the squad was out-gained by 243 yards in the process.

 

Since the start of the 2012 campaign, the program is 5-11 SU and 8-7 ATS on the road, with the OVER going 10-6 in that situation.

 

Big Injury

South Alabama welcomed back nine offensive starters from a year ago, but it’ll likely play the rest of the season without leading rusher Jay Jones due to a left knee injury, which can’t be ignored when looking over SBR's NCAA football odds page.

 

Jaguars sixth-year head coach Joey Jones seems confident that a trio of players will be able to fill his role, with Kendall Houston being the biggest benefactor of the loss, as he’s rushed for 209 yards on 48 carries.

 

Offensively, the team has been remarkably balanced—averaging 197.8 rushing and 209.8 passing yards per contest.

 

Where’s the Defense?

Blakeney is certainly ready to retire after watching his defense allow an average of 469.3 yards per game to this point, but the group has managed to force 10 turnovers.

 

Troy has racked up eight sacks in its first three Sun Belt Conference affairs, but the stop unit will have a difficult time getting after the signal-caller in this affair due to South Alabama’s balanced approach.

 

Revenge-Minded

One of the most important factors for college football handicappers to measure is revenge, and the Jaguars will be motivated to make amends for last year’s 34-33 loss to the Trojans as 3.5-point road underdogs.

 

South Alabama gained a remarkable 630 total yards in that matchup, with a pair of quarterbacks throwing for 235-plus yards, while not turning the ball over.

 

Prediction

I’m going to recommend that readers back the Trojans as one of their against-the-spread picks, as they’ve covered the number in six of their last seven games as underdogs of 10.5 to 21 points.

 

Free College Football Pick:  Troy Trojans +14.5 at CRIS

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