by Joe Fortenbaugh
December 04, 02013
It’s been a hell of a run this college football season and I greatly appreciate those of you who have read this column and reached out via twitter. Some excellent conversations have come as a result, with many of you throwing some real tasty winners my way.
Today marks the final edition of the college football betting primer for 2013, but we’ll be back in a few weeks to break down bowl season.
Good luck this weekend and thanks for reading.
Last week: 3-2
Season: 47-30-1 (.610)
CLICK HERE to check out all of the current lines.
Bowling Green Falcons (9-3, 4-2 road) at #14 Northern Illinois Huskies (12-0, 5-0 home)
*Note: This game will be played at Ford Field in Detroit.
When: Friday, 8:00pm ET
Open: Northern Illinois -3
Current: Northern Illinois -3
Bowling Green in 2013: 9-3 ATS, 9-3 to the UNDER
Northern Illinois in 2013: 8-4 ATS, 7-5 to the OVER
Lynch concludes his illustrious MAC career on Friday night.
Analysis: After appearing in 48 games over the last four years, we’re down to the final eight collegiate quarters for Northern Illinois star quarterback Jordan Lynch. The 23-year-old dual-threat stud and his undefeated teammates enter this MAC Championship showdown just one win shy of appearing in their second consecutive BCS bowl game. NIU is 33-16-3 ATS over their last 52 games overall, is +14 in turnover differential this season and has outscored the opposition by an average of 19.25 points per game. Bowling Green—winners of four straight—is a hell of a football team. But we’re salivating at the chance to get behind Lynch in the final MAC game of his career, where he’s gone 16-0 since 2012 with 28 passing touchdowns, 28 rushing touchdowns and only four interceptions.
Notable Trends: Bowling Green is 1-3-1 ATS over their last five December games, while Northern Illinois is 24-9-2 over their last 35 conference games.
Pick: Northern Illinois (-3)
#5 Missouri Tigers (11-1, 5-0 road) at #3 Auburn Tigers (11-1, 8-0 home)
*Note: This game will be played at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta.
When: Saturday, 4:00pm ET
Open: Auburn -3
Current: Auburn -2
Missouri in 2013: 10-1-1 ATS, 6-6 to the OVER
Auburn in 2013: 10-2 ATS, 7-5 to the OVER
Analysis: Ask yourself this: If Missouri and Auburn were still scheduled to play this weekend, but both Auburn’s Hail Mary against Georgia and field goal return against Alabama had failed to succeed, what would the sports books be listing as a point spread for this matchup? Answer: Missouri would be the favorite. That means those two fluky plays have presented us with a tremendous opportunity for Saturday. Missouri is 4-0 ATS over their last four SEC games, is +15 in turnover differential this season and will have a big-time advantage on the outside, where the 6’4” L’Damian Washington, and 6’6” Dorial Green-Beckham own a monstrous size advantage over the Auburn cornerbacks. The sharps will be all over Missouri this weekend, but will likely wait until that big influx of public Auburn money reaches the counter, pushing this line hopefully as high as +3. That’s the optimal number, but we’ll take +2.5 if that +3 never happens.
Notable Trends: Missouri is 6-1 ATS over their last seven games against teams with a winning record, while Auburn is 5-2 ATS over their last seven neutral site games.
Pick: Missouri (hoping for +3, but will play it at +2.5 or +2)
#2 Ohio State Buckeyes (12-0, 5-0 road) at #10 Michigan State Spartans (11-1, 7-0 home)
*Note: This game will be played at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.
When: Saturday, 8:17pm ET
Open: Ohio State -6.5
Current: Ohio State -5.5
Ohio State in 2013: 6-5-1 ATS, 8-4 to the OVER
Michigan State in 2013: 7-4-1 ATS, 8-4 to the UNDER
US PRESSWIRESorry, Urban. But we're backing Sparty this weekend.
Analysis: That’s a big spread to lay against a defense that is surrendering an average of just 11.8 points per game this season (fourth in NCAA). Ohio State looks to keep their BCS championship dreams alive Saturday evening against a nasty Sparty defense that has forced 27 turnovers and recorded 29 sacks through 12 games in 2013. Michigan State has covered the number in four of their last five contests, is 7-1-1 ATS over their last nine games against teams with a winning record and 17-4-2 ATS over their last 23 outings after surrendering less than 170 passing yards in the previous game. The Buckeyes are 1-3-1 ATS over their last five games after scoring more than 40 points in the previous matchup and, in the eyes of this writer, are an overrated football team. I’m playing Sparty both with the points and on the moneyline.
Notable Trends: Ohio State is 1-4-1 ATS over their last five games played on fieldturf, while Michigan State is 6-0 ATS over their last six games played on fieldturf.
Pick: Michigan State (hoping for +6, will play it at +5.5)
Hit me up on Twitter: @JoeFortenbaugh