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Submitted by Richie Baccellieri on Thursday, September 24, 2015 at 12:15 PM

I waited as long as I could to post today because of the situation today involving Cincinnati quarterback Gunner Kiel. I always aim for lunchtime on the East Coast for these Thursday reports. Just before the deadline, Kiel was upgraded from doubtful to probable as he returns from a minor shoulder injury and what was reported as a slight concussion in the third quarter of last week’s game vs. Miami of Ohio.

It will be up to you to monitor sharp action the rest of the afternoon in that game!

We have four matchups to talk about this Thursday and Friday. Two each night. As always, I’ll take them in the order they appear in the official Nevada rotation so you can make notes in your schedules.  



WASHINGTON AT NY GIANTS (on CBS): Looks like we have a tug-of-war brewing with the NY Giants -3 and Washington +3.5. The first number up a few days ago was the Giants -4. Washington was hit pretty hard at that number because their defense has been rock solid so far. A drop all the way to the key number of three stood solid for awhile. Late in the week though…Giants money has been coming in. Some sharps like taking 0-2 teams to get their first win of the season in Week Three because of historical trends. That plus the general square (public) sentiment for affordable TV home teams seems to be in play here. Sharps impressed with Washington’s defense will take anything over the three. Opposing sharps playing the record angle, and the public, will lay three.

The Over/Under has fallen from 45 to 44 because of respect for Washington’s defense (which allowed only 10 points in each of the first two games—Miami had a punt return TD too). No buy back yet on the 44…though that could happen if weather is great for scoring. If the usual swirling winds are in play…we may see a drop to 43.5 or lower.


CINCINNATI AT MEMPHIS (on ESPN): When it looked like Kiel would miss the game, Memphis was a solid -10 across the board. Any stores testing higher than the 10 did see underdog money come in on Cincinnati. Just minutes ago…it looked like Memphis -9 was painted across the board because of the Kiel news. Will it sit there? We’ll have to watch and see. My guess is that the line will come down more if there’s confirmation that he’s definitely going to play. Memphis has a soft pass defense and can’t really be justified as a big favorite over Kiel. That being said, Cincinnati was embarrassed by Temple and almost humiliated by Miami of Ohio last week…so there’s a limit to how much passion dog lovers could have for the Bearcats.

The Over/Under started rising on the Kiel news as well. What had been 66 is now up to 67.5 or 68…with the potential to reach 70 if there’s confirmation he’ll play.

Best to think of it this way. If Kiel ends up as a scratch, you’re looking at a settled line of Memphis -10 and 66. If Kiel gets the go-ahead late in the afternoon…we’ll likely see something below nine and higher than 68. The public isn’t too active in a game like this because there’s an NFL game on TV. Line moves you see will be caused by sharp influences.



BOISE STATE AT VIRGINIA (on ESPN): Give Virginia credit for scheduling tough! After opening with UCLA and Notre Dame, Virginia follows up a “week off” against William & Mary with another big TV game. Boise State opened at -1.5 and has been bet up to -2.5. That line stood solid for a few days. I am seeing some stores test the key number of three now. It was assumed that sharps would come in hard on the home dog at +3. Sportsbooks may need that because squares are going to bet the cheap favorite in a TV game…particularly after watching Virginia lose to UCLA and Notre Dame. Very few squares stayed up to watch the bad Boise State ending to the BYU game! The Wise Guys who liked Boise State got in early. Those waiting on the dog will gladly take +3 but are hoping the public might push that even higher.

An opening total in the low to mid 50’s has been bet way down to 49. There’s a good chance of rain in the advance forecast…which is likely a factor in such a large move.


STANFORD AT OREGON STATE (on FOX-SPORTS-1): The status of Stanford quarterback Kevin Hogan is still up in the air as of press time. It’s assumed he’ll play…but there’s not official confirmation as this report goes up. Look for a line around Stanford -16 if he’s confirmed. Then, assume any moves off the opener reflect sharp action. That’s particularly true if the move is toward the home dog. Oregon State isn’t a team the public is looking to invest in generally.

My top Thursday plays are available for credit card purchase here at the website. If you have any questions about longterm packages, call the VSM office at 1-888-777-4155 today during normal business hours, or Saturday or Sunday before the earliest games kick off.

My next sharps report will be late Friday morning East Coast time when I look at some selected marquee matchups in Saturday’s colleges. Then the weekly NFL report will be up Saturday morning at the latest. Thanks for reading. Let’s get a big weekend started tonight!


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Richie B. on twitter @vsm_baccellieri

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