NCAA College Football Picks: Week 3 Against the Spread
Contributor II September 10, 2014 Comments Comment Bubble Icon
While there are some good games this week , there is only one between ranked teams , with South Carolina hosting Georgia. Meanwhile, t here are many nonconference teams in action this weekend facing ranked ones from bigger conferences.
Are any big names being taken down this weekend? (Here’s a hint: It should be your “favorite” week.)
Let’s get to the front of the lines, courtesy of CoopersPick.com:
Tennessee vs. No. 4 Oklahoma
Betting Odds: Oklahoma -21
Both of these teams are 2-0, and while neither team has played an opponent from a major conference, OU has been very impressive, outscoring its opponents 100-23. The Sooners are loaded with talent on both sides of the ball, and the big question is can Tennessee keep up with the Sooners? Not likely.
Pick Against the Spread: Have to go with OU in this one, even given 21 points, as it is at home, and Tennessee only beat a mediocre Arkansas State in last week by 15 points. The Sooners are 5-1 against the spread in their last six nonconference games.
No. 6 Georgia vs. No. 24 South Carolina
Betting Odds: Georgia -6.5
Oh, how the mighty have fallen. The Gamecocks were embarrassed in their home opener and, now back in their house, are not the favorite facing Georgia. Hard to imagine, but if South Carolina loses again, it will likely already be out of the BCS playoff picture.
On the flip side, the Bulldogs not only looked very impressive in their 45-21 win over a ranked Clemson team in their opener, but they will have had two weeks rest to get ready for this big SEC game. That said, Georgia is 1-5-1 ATS in its last seven conference games.
Pick Against the Spread: Have to go with Georgia in this one, as Todd Gurley leads a great rushing attack, and the defense is solid as well.
No. 12 UCLA vs. Texas
Betting Odds: UCLA -7
Texas was stunned in its last game, getting crushed at home 41-7 to an unranked BYU team. And with Heisman candidate Brett Hundley and a rejuvenated head coach leading the 2-0 Bruins, the Longhorns defense will be in for a long game.
UCLA will win because of offense and in spite of its suspect D, which has been less than impressive thus far. UCLA is 7-3 ATS in the last 10 nonconference games, and Texas has only covered the spread in one of its past five nonconference games.
Pick Against the Spread: UCLA will win and cover in this game.
No. 16 Arizona State vs. Colorado
Betting Odds: ASU -14.5
Arizona State is 2-0—both blowouts—and will win this game because of a rushing attack that is averaging 345 rushing yards (no, not a typo) per game. Colorado lost its opener to Colorado State and then barely handled a UMass squad that may be one of the weakest in Division 1. ASU will take advantage big time of a Colorado defense that has given up 69 points combined so far this year.
Pick Against the Spread: The Sun Devils are legit. Plus, they have covered the spread in their last five against Colorado. That trend will continue, and bank on an easy win and cover on the road.
No. 21 Louisville vs. Virginia
Betting Odds: Louisville -6.5
Louisville beat up on a cream puff in its season opener but then beat a solid Miami team. On the other side of the coin, UVA had an easy win in its last game and only lost to a ranked UCLA by eight points before that.
The Cavaliers defense needs to step up in this game, and while at home, they will not get blown out—but don’t expect the win either. Both teams are 4-0 ATS in their last four, but Louisville tops that stat at 19-7 ATS in its last 26 road games.
Pick Against the Spread: The momentum continues for the Cardinals, with a victory margin of at least a touchdown.
No. 9 USC vs. Boston College
Betting Odds: USC -19.5
Is the dynasty back? USC is coming off a HUGE upset win over Stanford and is a major betting favorite on the road facing Boston College. USC has a balanced offense and will be facing a BC defense that allowed Pitt’s James Conner to rush for over 210 yards in its last loss.
Can the Eagles score on a USC D that only gave up 10 points to a ranked Stanford squad and ranks 14th in the nation? USC is 7-2 ATS in its last nine games overall, and BC is 0-5 ATS in its last five versus Pac-12 teams.
Pick Against the Spread: The Trojans dominate the Eagles on both sides of the ball and more than cover the 19.5 spread.
East Carolina vs. No. 17 Virginia Tech
Betting Odds: Virginia Tech -10
Virginia Tech came up with the nation’s biggest upset last week (though one picked first here!), beating then-top 10 Ohio State. The Hokies laid 35 points on the Buckeyes, but they cannot take East Carolina for granted.
The Pirates played well in losing to a ranked South Carolina team by just 10, and they rank in the top 20 in the nation in passing yards per game. However, Tech has a decent secondary that will be facing an ECU passing offense that ranks top 15 in the nation.
Pick Against the Spread: Favorites all the way in this one, as Tech will show last game was no fluke by easily winning and covering.