Friday, December 29, 2017
Texas A&M vs. Wake Forest (NCAAF) - 1:00 PM EST Premium Pick
Pick: Money Line: -145 Wake Forest Pick Title: Strong 10 Star ACC Upriser (WIN)
Expect a BIG turnout of fans making this short trip from Winston-Salem to Charlotte. The 7-5 SU Demon Deacons do have some flaws & are suspect to the rush. However, 4th-year HC Dave Clawson has had ample time to dissect & implement a plan of attacking the vulnerable Texas A&M rushing defense. The best QB on the field in this one is Wake Forest's John Wolford who comes in with a solid TD/INT ratio of 25/6, 2,792 passing yards, 615 rushing yards, 64% completions & is ranked 10th in the country in passing efficiency. He'll be up against a 7-5 SU Aggies' squad (making their 9th consecutive bowl appearance) that's only hanged around their past 2 bowl affairs losing 27-21 to Louisville in the Music Bowl 2 years ago while getting edged 33-28 by Kansas State in the Texas Bowl last year. What I like about this edition of the Demon Deacons is their resiliency. They were down big @ Syracuse (who beat Clemson @ the Carrier Dome) 38-21 & flipped a switch & turned it into a lopsided 64-43 win. The motivation has to be greater on the Wake Forest sideline where they make just their 12th bowl appearance in 71 years! It's been a far cry since their 1st one back in 1946's Gator Bowl when they came out victorious 28-14 over South Carolina. This team showed up big last season in the Military Bowl against a Temple squad who were on a 10-0 ATS run coming in but left 34-26 losers to the Deacs. Texas A&M interim & newly-promoted HC Jeff Banks (in for 1 game only before new HC Jimbo Fisher takes over with a fat $75 million-10-year contract) had a few weeks to get them ready since taking over the reins for Kevin Sumlin who almost sealed his fate by blowing a 44-10 lead to U.C.L.A. My bottom line says the boys from Winston-Salem have made the most of the recent bowl appearance covering 7 out of 8 since 1992. Because of their 9-3 ATS record for the year, the best line value falls on the ML here. As far as conferences are concerned, the ACC stock is on the rise since their 11 bowl entries last season went a stellar 9-3 SU & 10-2 ATS last season. Look for Wolford to execute some time-consuming drives as they outlast the Aggies here. Let's go to Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte for the Belk Bowl to play the WAKE FOREST DEMON DEACONS as my Strong 10 Star ACC Upriser!
NC State vs. Arizona State (NCAAF) - 3:00 PM EST Premium Pick
Pick: Money Line: -255 NC State Pick Title: 9 Star "Smiling Cobra" Mid-Day Striker (WIN)
The Sun Devils program is a bit more than in a state of constant flux. The juggling of their staff (OC Billy Napier left to coach Louisiana & DC Phil Bennett retired for health reasons) & the hiring of Herman Edwards by Arizona State AD Ray Anderson is a BIG transition for them. Keeping on recently-fired HC Todd Graham can ruffle more feathers than a plus here. My bottom line says HC Dave Duerson's club is solid with 16 returning lettermen than include both a solid defensive & offensive line. The added rest should give the Wolfpack added pop to control the line of scrimmage with a veteran-seasoned club. Arizona State (7-5 SU) is just happy to be here after achieving their 1st winning season in 3 years. They already played their "A" game (beating Arizona 42-30 @ home in their regular season finale) for Todd Graham & will be hard-pressed to duplicate that same fire again. In the numbers support us as North Carolina State is a perfect 5-0 ATS as a favorite the last 5. This is great news combined with the fact that ASU has habitually NOT showed up in bowls since the end of the millenium (1999) going just 4-8 SU. Let's confidently go to the Sun Bowl in El Paso to play the NORTH CAROLINA STATE WOLFPACK as my 9 Star "Smiling Cobra" Mid-Day Striker!
Tuesday, December 26, 2017
Utah vs. West Virginia (NCAAF) - 1:30 PM EST Premium Pick
Pick: Money Line: -247 Utah Pick Title: Mike's 2nd "Smiling Cobra" Bowl Striker Play (WIN)
It's been quite some time since the last time these 2 met in a bowl game. We'd have to go back to 1964's Liberty Bowl that saw the Utes beat up the Mountaineers 32-6. For this matchup, the West Virginia offense hasn't been the same since November as they compiled just a 2-2 record, got outscored by a 35-28 PPG average, have been out-gained by 50 yards & their "D" has given up a whopping 437 YPG. WVU has lost @ home by double-digits to Oklahoma State & Texas. I feel I have over-estimated HC Dana Holgorsen & Co. (7-5 SU) of late as there's a BIG drop from QB Will Grier (injured/broken finger/7-3 SU before injury) to Chris Chugunov as well as not having RB Justin Crawford who chooses to sit this game out to prep for the NFL. On the flip side of the coin, Utah's 6-6 SU record is quite deceiving since they went to the wire with 3 quality teams losing to Stanford & Washington by 3 while getting edged @ U.S.C. by 1. The Utes are like calamine lotion in a poison ivy ward going an incredible 13-1 SU their past 14 bowlers including 10-1 SU with current HC Kyle Whittingham. My bottom line says Utah owns the better "D" & that wins bowl games. In contrast the past month of games, the Utes have outscored opponents by an average of over 10 PPG. Whether it's QB Tyler Huntley or Troy Williams, I feel asking them for a SU win (favorite slightly over-priced) gets us to the window when its over. Other numbers tell us that Utah has come up BIG versus the Big 12 going a perfect 4-0 ATS while West Virginia has dropped their past 4 bowlers ATS. Let's go to the Cotton Bowl in Dallas for the "Heart of Dallas Bowl" to play the UTAH UTES as my 2nd "Smiling Cobra" Bowl Striker Play!
My 2017-18 CFB Bowl Record: 4-0----100%-----Post-Season 10 Star Record: 1-0----100%
My 2017-18 CFB Overall Seasonal Record: 55-49----53%-----9-0 the last 9!