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Mike Handzelek's CFB Week 15 Analysis/Review With Reg. Seas. GOY


By: Point Shaver Handzelek
Date: Dec 14, 2020
   
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Saturday, December 12, 2020 Navy vs. Army (NCAAF) - 3:00 PM EST Premium Pick Pick: Money Line: -279 Army Rating: 9* Mike's 9* Armed Forces Smart Play (WIN) There's a lot of nostalgia here with 7-2 SU Army hosting 3-6 SU Navy for the first time since World War II in 1943. Since the best ground game usually rules, we can't ignore the best defense to shut down it. That clearly belongs to the 4th-ranked defense in the country (also 8th in points allowed @ 16.3) - the Black Knights. The analytics ALSO point directly @ the Cadets as Navy's 4-game losing skein & 293 yards of total offense per game both loom large. The Midshipmen ground game is their staple & Army has severely limited their opponents to 119 YPG rushing. In contrast, HC Ken Niumatalolo (1st Samoan HC in NCAA history) & his 3-4 defensive alignment (ranked 109th against the run, 5.3 YPR) will have their work cut out for them against a rested AND fresh Black Knights' ground game (3rd-ranked nationally) that's averaging 296.7 YPG. Add this all up PLUS having a super-rare venue advantage will be too much to overcome in the end. My bottom line says there's a clear edge @ QB with Army's Tyhier Tyler over Navy's Xavier Arline who wasn't in the top 4 QB's on the pre-season depth charts. Because of line inflation, here's the play. Let's go to legendary Michie Stadium on the shores of the Hudson River in West Point to play the ARMY BLACK KNIGHTS as my 9* Armed Forces Smart Play! Wisconsin vs. Iowa (NCAAF) - 3:30 PM EST Premium Pick Pick: Point Spread: 2/-110 Iowa Rating: 8* Mike's 8* Big Ten Game Of The Week (WIN) HC Kirk Ferentz (22nd-year) & his Hawkeyes got off to a horrible start losing @ Purdue 24-20 before getting edges @ home 21-20 by Northwestern. Since then, Iowa has ran off 5 straight wins including 3 blowouts of Michigan State, Penn State & Minnesota. On the flips side, Wisconsin jumped out 2-0 but has become victimized by COVID-19 protocols to their players & schedule. They've lost their last 2 to Northwestern & Indiana after putting out just 6.5 PPG of offense. My bottom line says it's going to be awful hard for a traditionally run-laden team to beat a quality Big Ten club on the road with no rushing TD's in their last 2. We're banking on rookie-on-the-road Badgers' QB Graham Mertz to make rookie mistakes (7 turnovers the last 2 games) versus an opportunistic Iowa defense (16 takeaways this season). Let's jet to Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City to play the IOWA HAWKEYES (buying to + 3 1/2) as my 8* Big Ten Game Of The Week! Central Michigan vs. Toledo (NCAAF) - 3:00 PM EST Premium Pick Pick: Point Spread: 11/-110 Central Michigan Rating: 8* Mike's MAC Daddy Game Of The Week (WIN) We're getting excellent line value since the 3-2 SU Chippewas are off a 45-20 loss to Ball State COMBINED with 3-2 SU Toledo's 41-24 triumph over Northern Illinois. When getting points like this, I have to side with Central Michigan of HC Jim McElwain. The Toledo side has some uncertainty @ QB since they must decide to go with sophomore Carter Bradley (instrumental in their win last week) or senior Eli Peters (left with an injury). The weather (wind & rain) definitely gives an intangible edge to the dog as the game clock flies by. CM RB's Lew Nichols & Kobe Lewis should step up to keep them in it to win it. Let's jet (we're jetting this week) to the Glass Bowl in Toledo to play the CENTRAL MICHIGAN CHIPPEWAS (buying to + 11 1/2) as my 8* MAC Daddy Game Of The Week! Western Michigan vs. Ball State (NCAAF) - 12:00 PM EST Premium Pick Pick: Money Line: 105 Western Michigan Rating: 8* Mike's Barnburner Play Of The Week (LOSS) There's probably going to be more than a few offensive fireworks from both of these teams similar to the 35-31 Western Michigan win in Kalamazoo last season. The winner of this game goes to the MAC title game versus Buffalo which is currently set for Friday. The 2 key factors for me are these. One, the Broncos clearly come into this as the healthier team. And two, WMU seemed obviously looking ahead to this game by under-achieving versus Eastern Michigan last week. HC Tim Lester & Co. have revenge to settle here for a 42-41 OT loss @ this venue. Let's jet out to Scheumann Stadium in Muncie, IN to play the WESTERN MICHIGAN BRONCOS for the win OUTRIGHT as my 8* Barnburmer Play Of The Week! Utah vs. Colorado (NCAAF) - 12:00 PM EST Premium Pick Pick: Money Line: -125 Utah Rating: 10* Mike's CFB Regular Season Game Of The Year (WIN) When you look @ Colorado's 4-0 SU/4-0 ATS & Utah's 1-2 SU, Jon Q. Public begins to smell a blowout by the Buffaloes. In the words of ex-Indiana U. HC Lee Corso, "Not so fast my friends!" But Colorado RB Jarek Broussard is on fire rushing for 301 yards in a 24-13 win over Arizona, right? Please take note how BAD the Wildcats are after intra-state rival Arizona State just pummeled the 70-7 last night. To tell you the truth, ASU called off the dogs early. Here's something that throws the RED flag. That same Arizona team just had a 13-0 first-half lead & carried the ball for 6.2 yards per rush against these same Buffaloes. They now face a Utes' running game that's averaged 222 YPG & 5.2 YPC over the past 2. Freshman phenom Ty Jordan is the catalyst that gives the offense a big boost. Yes, Utah's offense looked dreadful turning the ball over 9 times in its first 2 outings. However, 16th-year HC Kyle Whittingham's squad has righted the ship of late & seems to have settled down with zero TO's last time out combined with a good "D". Speaking of "D", that's my lead to the bottom line. 5th-year DC Morgan Scalley will have his troops primed for this affair & will use a very unique defense (a 4-2-5) where he employs a ROVER-back & NB (nickel back) on level 2 to confuse offenses in reading formations. In addition, the core of his defense returns with leading tackler & MAC-back (or MLB) Devin Lloyd. Despite their slow start, this "D" only yields 351 total yards, holds opponents to 97 YPG UNDER their season averages & has 6 turnovers in 3 games. The last 3 seasons have seen the Utes dominate this series winning 34-13, 30-7 (last time here) & 45-15 last season. Don't get me wrong, new HC Karl Dorrell (3rd Colorado HC the last 3 years taking over for Mel Tucker who left for Michigan State) is doing a fantastic job skippering the Buffaloes who are nationally-ranked 21st. However, he loses the chess match versus the veteran Whittingham here! Let's jet out to Folsom Field in Boulder to play the UTAH UTES as my 10* CFB Regular Season Game Of The Year! Mike Handzelek's CFB Week 15 Record: 5-1 including Reg. Seas. GOY Double-Play Winner Mike Handzelek's 2020-21 CFB Overall Seasonal Record: 23-22 51%
 

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