Submitted by Kelso Sturgeon on Friday, September 23, 2011 at 7:36 PM
There is no limit to the value of handicapping every single college game on the board and that means for this Saturday I looked at 58 games on my way to eliminating, selecting and grading games that will be used for clients. It has been a week of learning-and I agree that I-AA Sam Houston State should be a 4 ½-point favorite at New Mexico and that Auburn and SMU should win in blowout fashion.
As interesting as I found these things, nothing compared with what an in-depth analysis of the Big 12 game that finds Oklahoma State (3-0) at Texas A&M (2-0) revealed. This game has all the makings of a classic and just might turn out to be the best game of the entire college football season.
Before moving on to OSU-Texas A&M, please make a note I did not say Sam Houston State, SMU or Auburn would cover.
Now back to the Aggies who are a 4 ½-point favorite, with a total of 68.
There are many elements-at least 48-that must be considered when handicapping any college football game but in the end nothing carries the weight of skill players, game-breakers and the number of blue-chip prime-time players that are 1-2-3 at all positions on the depth chart.
Talent wins games, period, and herein lies the dilemma of handicapping this game, especially when one knows I have picked Texas A&M to win the national championship-and the Aggies have been ranked first in my personal poll since day one of the 2011 season. Oklahoma State is ranked number seven in my Top 15.
Separating Texas A&M and Oklahoma State is almost impossible, unless one believes the home bias at Kyle Field in College Station is worth the 4 ½ one would have to lay with the Aggies. This is the first game I have seen in years that involved two teams that were armed to the teeth with players with the talent to beat anybody.
Breaking Down Cowboys-Aggies
Let's do a rundown of the skill players both teams bring to this game.
- At Quarterback Oklahoma State has senior Brandon Weeden who is ranked second in yards passing among 120 I-A starting quarterbacks with 370.3 yards. Texas A&M signal caller, senior Ryan Tannehill is ranked 17th with an average of 291.5 yards per game. The two differ a bit in their M.O. with Weeden more of a passer and Tannehill an excellent game director. Both are blue chip players and game-breakers.
- At Wide Receiver Oklahoma State has college football's top-ranked player at this position, senior All-American Justin Blackmon who is averaging 109.6 yards receiving in each game. He will be a first-round NFL draft choice. Texas A&M counters with the duo of All Big-12 receiver, senior Jeff Fuller (65.5 yards per game), and junior Ryan Swope (91.5 yards per game). Both will play on Sunday and all three mentioned are game-breakers.
- At Running Back Oklahoma State has sophomore Joseph Randle who is averaging 120 rushing yards per game. Texas A&M sends to the field senior Cyrus Gray who is averaging 116.5 yards per game after coming off a 2010 season where he rushed for 1,100 yards. Both are prime time players and are game-breakers.
Therein begins the challenge of handicapping this game. Now factor into the equation these elements:
Oklahoma State is an offensive team, averaging 52 points and 601 yards per game while giving up 413 yards and 27 points per game. Texas A&M is a bit more balanced, averaging 487.5 yards and 41.5 points on offense while giving up 267 yards per game.
Oklahoma is 7-0 straight up in its last seven road games. Texas A&M is 13-4 at home in its last 17 games there.
One could write a book about this game, but I have concluded:
The teams are so evenly matched it is no place to get well with a big bet.
The figures say Texas A&M will win the game by 1-2 points.
This means Oklahoma State (+4 ½) is the side.
Nobody ever said this game was easy.
Texas A&M Still #1 In My College Top 15 But My Money Will Be On Oklahoma State - Not As Conflicting As It Appears
Nationally Televised LSU At WVU Game Tops 100-Unit College Triple Crown Saturday - A Chance To Go 11-0 And Break The Bank
I Upgraded My 50 Unit College Game of the Week To A 100-Unit College Game Of Month Saturday With Team That Has 90% Chance To Cover - Kansas State (-17 ½) Won This Game Last Week Over Kent State 37-0
Going For 4th Straight Winning Saturday Night Special - Last Week's Winner...Oklahoma State 59, Tulsa 33
25-Unit Play On Bearcats Kick Off Winning Week
I had an excellent week in football last week and began this one Thursday night with a nice 25-unit blowout score by Cincinnati (-7) in its 44-14 blowout win over N.C. State and, as always, I want you to know the thoughts that went into handicapping this game. The comments serve as my handicapping lesson of the day. Here is exactly what I had to say:
CINCINNATI (2-1) -7 ½ over N.C. State (2-1) WON 44-14
Prediction: Cincinnati by 14-17
Comments: This is more a play against N.C. State as it is a play on Cincinnati. There is something wrong in Raleigh and I believe most of it relates to the hard-headedness of coach Tom O'Brien. First of all N.C. State went 9-4 last season, led by superstar quarterback Russell Wilson, one of the best signal callers the ACC has ever seen. At the end of last season, Wilson, who had a year of eligibility left even though he had graduated, told O'Brien he wanted to play baseball in the summer in the Colorado Rockies farm system and return for football in the fall. O'Brien told him absolutely not and Wilson moved on and signed a $1.5 million contract to play baseball. O'Brien held his ground and Wilson played baseball in Asheville and then enrolled at Wisconsin for the 2011 season, something permitted when a player has already graduated. That was the beginning of the end for this N.C. State team that returned five offensive and eight defensive starters but just 29 lettermen (the average school returns 40-55) which leaves the team with little overall experience and less experienced depth. The latter factor is magnified for this game since the Wolf Pack will take the field tonight with an injury list as long as my arm and it includes 3-4 starters. Had Wilson been there, things would have been different because he had the ability to carry a weak team on his back. To me all of this makes N.C. State a sitting duck for any decent team it plays and Cincinnati qualifies as that. N.C. State's record to date reflects that. The Wolf Pack has beaten I-AA Liberty 43-21, I-AA South Alabama 35-13 while losing at Wake Forest, 34-27. There is no edge Cincinnati does not have in this game. It has the better skill players, including at least two game-breakers, has a dynamite offensive line and a more than adequate defense. I have my doubts second-year Cincinnati head coach Butch Jones knows what he is doing but talent wins ball games and he has most of it in this game.
As I say, winning is never an accident. There are logical reasons for using or not using each team I release.
The College Betting Menu
The winning continues tonight (Friday) with a nice solid 10-unit Best Bets Club play on the nationally televised (ESPN) game that finds Central Florida (2-1) at BYU (1-2). That game is available on this site and toll free at 1-800-755-2255.
Here is the menu of big Saturday plays keep in mind that in addition to these specials, I also am releasing my regular service plays. Again all are available on this site and at the toll free number listed above. All major credit cards accepted.
Saturday's Big Plays
All Games Available On This Site And Toll Free At 1-800-755-2255
National Televised LSU At West Virginia Top Play In 100-Unit Triple Crown
I am releasing my 2011 College Triple Crown today and it is highlighted by Saturday night's nationally televised (ABC) LSU (3-0) at West Virginia (3-0) game and, as I have done in six of the last eight years, I intend to break-the bank one more time. My College Triple Crown is made up of three 25-unit plays on three teams that grade out with a 90% chance to cover the number and then a 25-unit parlay of those winners at odds of 6-1. It is your option to make up other parlays and teasers. This is a serious play for serious players and you can win it for just $50, charged to your major credit card.
My 50-Unit College Game Of Week Has Now Been Upgraded To a 100-Unit Game of the Month - Win This One In A Blowout Saturday!
I knocked down the big money again last Saturday with another winning 50-unit College Game of the Week as Kansas State (-17 ½) crushed Kent State 37-0 and my figures say I will win another one just as easily today. I have found a team that has the edge in 45 of the 48 categories I used to handicap college football and that all but guarantees another blowout win. Get all the money with this knockout play today for just $50, charged to your major credit card. For the record I am 4-0-1 with my last five 50-unit bets.
Going For 4th Straight Saturday Night Special Winner Tonight
I have released three Saturday Night Specials in college football this season and won them all. Last week's blowout win by Oklahoma State (-13 ½) over Tulsa 59-33 was typical of the first two games and I intend to make it 4-0 tonight.
10-Unit Underdog Highlights 3-0 Day In Best Bets Football
I went 2-1 with last Saturday's Best Bet Club games and am shooting for 3-0 today, with my top play being a 10-unit play that grades out the straight-up winner. For the record, last Saturday I won a 10-unit play on Colorado (-7) in its 28-14 win over Colorado State, a winning 5-unit play on Texas Tech (-20 ½) in its 59-13 victory over New Mexico while losing with Houston. I am confident I will go 3-0 today and you can get these three standout plays, including that 10-unit underdog, for just $15, charged to your major credit card. For the record, my Best Bets Club went 6-2 last week.
I'm primed and ready to take down the money Saturday. Get on board and get your piece of the action.