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Fresno State vs. Boise State Betting Pick from Jack Jones: October 17th 2014

Jack Jones - College Football PickFresno State Bulldogs vs. Boise State Broncos
Betting Pick: Fresno State +17 (October 17th 2014)

The Fresno State Bulldogs caught themselves looking ahead to this game against Boise State and were unable to take care of UNLV on the road last week. That result has left them undervalued heading into this one as the public perception on them is way down off that overtime loss. I’m not going to be quick to dismiss this team like the rest of the betting public is.

The same thing happened after they lost three straight games in blowout fashion to elite teams in Utah, USC and Nebraska to open the season. The Bulldogs came back to go a perfect 3-0 SU & 3-0 ATS over their next three games with double-digit victories over Southern Utah, New Mexico and San Diego State. Look for them to bounce back and cover this lofty 17-point spread Friday as well.

Boise State has clearly taken a step back this season. It has only won one game by more than 17 points this year, which was a 34-9 triumph against a terrible Louisiana-Lafayette bunch. The last two games for the Broncos show that they are extremely vulnerable. They lost at Air Force 14-28 despite being a 13-point favorite in that contest. They barely survived Nevada last week in a 51-46 road victory.

Fresno State boasts a very good offense fully capable of putting up enough points to stay within this 17-point spread. It is averaging 28.7 points and 441.4 yards per game on the season. It has been much more effective since the tough start to the season against a brutal opening three-game schedule.

After being a punching bag for the Broncos for years, the Bulldogs have punched back the last two years. They only lost 10-20 at Boise State in 2012, and then put an end to a seven-game losing streak in this series with a thrilling 41-40 home victory last season. This 2014 Fresno State squad is more than capable of giving Boise State a run for its money again this year.

Fresno State is 15-6 ATS when playing with six or less days rest over the last three seasons. The Bulldogs are 11-3 ATS after gaining 6.25 or more yards per play in their previous game over the last three years. The Broncos are 6-13 ATS in their last 19 home games vs. a team with a losing road record. Bet Fresno State Friday.

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Virginia Tech vs. Pittsburgh Betting Pick from Freddy Wills: October 16th 2014

Freddy Wills - College Football PickVirginia Tech vs. Pittsburgh
Betting Pick: Virginia Tech +110 odds (October 16th 2014)

Both teams come off a bye here and I think that will help the Hokies better even as the road team. Pitt is still one of the youngest teams in the country with Sophomores making all the noise and I think coming off a bye along with the fact that they are just going to be too juiced for this game is going to create issues in a game where VA Tech should have a lot of success on defense.

Pittsburgh’s 3 game losing streak has come in the hands of teams that can stop the run. All 3 losses Pitt has been held under 5 yards per carry and under 200 yards rushing. Iowa ranked 70th vs. the run is much better than that ranking and they won at Pitt, Akron ranked 38th beat Pitt and held them to 10 points, and Virginia ranked 9th vs. run also defeated Pitt at home. While VA Tech is ranked 32nd they are much better in my opinion. The only teams to average more than 3 yards per carry were UNC and Georgia Tech. UNC runs with their talented QB while Georgia Tech has the triple option. Pitt won’t be running with their QB, but giving the ball to James Conner who has slowed down significantly once the competition was better and teams realized Pitts was not going to beat them deep.

VA Tech has played well on the road this year and historically well on Thursday nights. They are also better on offense and defense vs. a more challenging schedule YTD on third downs and in the red zone. VA Tech can stop the run and set up third and longs and their pass protection and pass rushes are better. Pitt’s pass defense looks like a top 10 unit, but they’ve faced passing offenses ranked 110, 116, 71, 114, and 95. If VA Tech doesn’t make too many mistakes they win this game.

Oregon State vs. Utah College Football Pick from Jack Jones: October 16th 2014

Jack Jones - College Football PickOregon State vs. Utah
College Football Pick: Oregon State +3 (October 16th 2014)

The No. 20 Utah Utes (4-1) are one of the most overrated teams in the country right now. They are getting so much respect for their wins over Michigan and UCLA that they are actually favored in this game. That means the books over overlooking their 27-28 home loss to Washington State.

In all three of those games, the Utes were outgained by Michigan, Washington State and UCLA to show that they easily could have or should have lost all three. They were even outgained by the Cougars by 138 yards. The only reason they have been able to come away with a 4-1 record to this point is due to being +6 in turnover differential over their past three contests. They cannot rely on turnovers and defensive touchdowns forever.

Oregon State (4-1) has been crushed by USC 10-35 on the road in its only loss of the season. That loss is stuck in the minds of the betting public and thus the oddsmakers as they are undervalued because of it. They have won their other four games, including each of their two home games against Portland State (29-14) and San Diego State (28-7). They outgained Portland State by 290 total yards and should have won by more. They outgained San Diego State by 157 yards as well in their most impressive performance of the year.

I really like the improvement I’ve seen from this Oregon State defense this season in allowing just 331.4 yards per game and 4.8 per play. That’s impressive when you consider their opponents are averaging 394 yards per game and 5.2 per play on the season. It’s going to be tough for this Utah offense to move the football and put up points on the road in this one.

Oregon State is 26-12 ATS in its last 38 games off a bye week. The Beavers are 30-13 ATS in their last 43 games after having won three of their last four games coming in. The Utes are 4-10 ATS in their last 14 conference games. Utah is 6-16 ATS in its last 22 games following a win. The Beavers are 43-16-1 ATS in their last 60 October games. This is the time of year where Mike Riley gets the most out of his teams.

Plays against road favorites (UTAH) – an excellent offensive team (>=34 PPG) against an average defensive team (21-28 PPG), after a win by 6 or less points are 30-7 (81.1%) ATS over the last 10 seasons. This is also a tough spot for the Utes as they are coming off the big win over UCLA and have USC on deck, making this a sandwich game for them and a possible letdown. Bet Oregon State Thursday.

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