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1* Free Play on Blue Jackets +125
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1* Free NHL Pick on New York Rangers +180
This line would suggest New York is a long-shot to win tonight in Washington and I'm just not buying it. The Rangers are being way undervalued here because they are playing on no rest after last night's game in New Jersey.
However, this is a well rested NY team. They have only played 4 games to this point. This will be the Capitals ninth game. This will be just the 3rd game since Oct. 5th for the Rangers.
NY's offense let them down in their last 2, after they scored 10 goals in back-to-back wins to open the season. I look for that offense to get back on track. Washington's defense definitely has some holes. Capitals have allowed 3 or more goals in 5 of their last 6 games, giving up 6 goals twice during this stretch. Take New York!
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1* Free Sharp Play on New Mexico vs Wyoming under 49½ -110
Wisconsin -31 1.1% Free Play
Not many will be brave enough to lay this many points on the road, but I think Wisconsin won’t be satisfied to just get up big in this game. The coaches will be pointing to Michigan’s 28-0 early lead that slipped away making it a 28-25 game in the third quarter. I don’t see that with Wisconsin if anything they add to their lead. I’m not worried about the look ahead with Wisconsin to Ohio State. They were undefeated in 2017 with Ohio State on deck and won at Minnesota 31-0.
Illinois has gotten by and have hung in games because they have been able to win the turnover battle. They have been fortunate with a 70% fumble recovery rate, and they do have havoc on their defensive line with 18.9% havoc rate, but they haven’t faced many offensive lines like Wisconsin who rank among the nation’s best, 12th in power success rate, just 8.69% havoc rate allowed and that’s against a very tough opponent average rank of 16.87%.
Wisconsin should get some big running plays in this one as Illinois ranks 113th in 20+ rushes allowed, 117th in 10+ rushes allowed, and 81st in ypc, and that’s against an average offensive ranking of 96th. Wisconsin ranks 14th, against some good defenses. Illinois has allowed each of its last 3 opponents to go over 300 yards. I wonder what they might have expended against a physical Michigan team making that come back. I see Wisconsin continuing on their path of shutting teams out as they cover this game.
The free soccer pick takes place Saturday (October 19) in the Premier League. Take Everton at home.
West Ham 1
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Free Play from Doc’s Sports. Take #353 Nevada Wolf Pack over Utah State Aggies (10:15p.m., Saturday, October 19 ESPNU) The Wolf Pack are one of the worst 4-2 teams in the country with a huge point differential having been blown out big in both of their losses this season. But I believe this is about 5 points to much facing a Utah State team that is not super explosive to cover these types of numbers. Nevada is a better team that Colorado State and Utah State only beat them by 10 points I Logan earlier this season. The Aggies have a new coach this year and Nevada got some life by starting Malik Henry (Last Chance U). He did not play all that well against San Jose State last week but should play better in his second start. The underdog has covered the spread in 5 straight games between Nevada and Utah State. Do not miss out on Doc’s Sports Weekend Football Card! Monster run in both college and NFL football and now is the time to sign-up with a long term package from a handicapper that has 48 years of experience.
The set-up: Philadelphia is 3-3 and off a 38-20 road loss at Minnesota. The Cowboys are 3-3 as well and they're off a terrible road loss to the Jets, falling 24-22. The Eagles defense looked particularly horrible last weekend though, allowing three TD passes to Kick Cousins and I think that Dak Prescott is going to bounce back here and take advantage at home. Philadelphia stand out DeSean Jackson has an abdomen issue and is listed as questionable for this one as well.
The pick: Despite the disappointing result last weekend, Prescott still finished with 277 passing yards and RB Ezekiel Elliot still finished with 105 rushing yards. Note as well that Philadelphia is a poor 2-5 ATS in its last seven following a road loss (including 0-1 ATS this year), while the Cowboys are still 7-3 ATS in their last ten as a home favorite.
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Saturday's FREE NCAAF WINNER: Tulane
4:00 pm pst.
Tulane is 5-1, both SU and ATS. Their only blemish was a 24-6 loss to 11th ranked Auburn. Memphis, which is also 5-1 SU, got shredded last year in this matchup, 40-24 as Tulane ran for 318 yards. Well, the Tigers 92nd ranked run defense just allowed the Owls of Temple to rack up 193 yards on the ground in last week's, 30-28 loss as a 3.5-point 'dog. The Green Wave own the nation's No. 4 rushing unit and will once again decimate the Tigers defense. On the other side of the ball, Tulane will contain the Memphis "O" with their very talented "D" (26th, 19.2 PPG allowed). Take the Green Wave. Thank you.
Jack’s Free Pick Saturday: Southern Miss PK
Southern Miss was my pick to win their side of Conference USA, which is also the same side that Louisiana Tech resides in. And thus this could end up being the de facto division title game. And from what I’ve seen from both teams thus far, Southern Miss is the better team and should win this game Saturday afternoon.
Southern Miss is a veteran team that returned 16 starters this year. They have gone 4-2 against a tough schedule that ranks 104th in the country. You’d think it would rank higher than that considering they are 4-2 with their only losses coming on the road to Alabama and Mississippi State from the SEC West. They also won at Troy, and they have handled their business at home with three blowout victories.
Louisiana Tech is 5-1, but it has played the 153rd-ranked schedule in the country. The Bulldogs are way overvalued due to the ease of their schedule. They lost 14-45 to Texas is the opener, and they have won five straight against cupcakes since in Grambling, Bowling Green, FIU, Rice and UMass. And they even struggled to beat two of those teams, beating Grambling just 20-14 as 30-point home favorites, and topping Rice 23-20 as 8-point road favorites.
Southern Miss is 4-0 SU & 3-1 ATS in its last four meetings with Louisiana Tech. I love Southern Miss QB Jack Abraham, who is completing 71.7% of his passes for 1,936 yards with a 12-to-4 TD/INT ratio on the season. He has also rushed for three touchdowns and is averaging 10.8 yards per attempt. He is one of the most underrated quarterbacks in the country.
Plays on road teams where the line is +3 to -3 (Southern Miss) - off a home win by 17 points or more, with 4-plus more starters returning than their opponent are 35-11 (76.1%) ATS over the last 10 seasons. The Golden Eagles are the much more veteran team in this matchup and should have no problem winning their fifth straight in this series over Louisiana Tech. Bet Southern Miss Saturday.
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There are a lot of quarterback question marks in this one on both sides of the ball. Boston College is turning to their backup after Anthony Brown went down for the season. This means there will be a lot more of a reliance on AJ Dillon and the ground game. I don't know how they'll do against an NC State defense that is allowing 19 points per game and 66.7 rushing yards per contest. NC State has played three different quarterbacks and none of them have been that spectacular. They've scored 16 and 13 the last two weeks as the run game hasn't done enough to promote balance. BC's defense has been pretty awful, but they've shown up in spurts holding Wake to one of their lower totals at 27 points. NC State has gone under in 19 of their last 32 including five of six this year. BC has gone under in 12 of their last 19 ACC games. Give me the under in this one.
My free play is on the Fla Panthers at 7:05 ET. The Colorado Avalanche jumped out to a 5-0-0 start and had scored at least three goals in each game, but the Avs became the last team in the NHL to lose a game when they lost a 3-2 overtime decision at Pittsburgh on Wednesday. "A couple games ago, we weren't playing great and found a way to get two points," Avalanche goalie Philipp Grubauer said. "Maybe this was a little bit of a reality check." The 2-2-2 Panthers return home after earning points in three straight road games, following a pair of shootout losses by scoring five unanswered goals in a 6-4 win at New Jersey. "I've seen so much character from this team the past few games," Florida defenseman Aaron Ekblad said. "We're resilient, and we fight to the end." Nathan MacKinnon amassed a career-high 99 points in 2018-19 and is off to another strong start with at least one point in each of Colorado's six games (three goals / six assists). Linemate Mikko Rantanen collected an assist at Pittsburgh and matches MacKinnon's point streak while taking over the team lead with 10 points (4 G / 6 A). Rookie defenseman Cale Makar (0 G / 6 A) was finally held off the scoresheet in Pittsburgh, denying his bid to join Marek Zidlicky as the only blue-liner to open his career with a six-game point streak. Florida head coach Joel Quenneville moved defenseman MacKenzie Weegar alongside Ekblad at the start of the three-game trip. The switch paid off for the team and both players, who were each a plus-3 and combined for a goal and four assists in the last three games. The Panthers are led by team captain Aleksander Barkov and goalie Sergei Bobrovsky. Barkov became an NHL All-Star last season, getting career highs in goals (35) and assists (61). Bobrovsky was in the net when the Columbus Blue Jackets engineered a stunning four-game sweep of the reigning Presidents' Trophy-winning Tampa Bay Lightning in the first round of the playoffs. However, Bobrovsky said "Goodbye, Columbus" and signed a seven-year, $70 million contract with Florida. Barkov has yet to tally but has five assists, while Bobrovsky is just 2-2-1 with a poor 3.90 GAA and an even worse SP of .870. Colorado won't be in a good mood when they arrive for Friday's game in Sunrise, Fl but this marks the third contest of a six-game, 12-day road trip for the Avs. They were just 17-16-8 on the road last season and I'm looking for Bobrovsky to be the difference tonight, as he's 7-2-1 with a 2.40 GAA in his career vs Colorado. Good luck...Larry