There’s nothing like hitting a hot streak at the betting window as the season winds down. I came close to hitting all three winners on my under the radar picks in previous weeks and finally hit the trifecta in Week 12 for the third time this college football season. Going 9-3 over the last four weekends has upped my winning percentage this year to 60. Not bad but it could be better, and I’ll look to increase that percentage on my under the radar picks as we move ahead to Week 13.
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When going through last week’s games I had a bunch of reasons to play the over in the Iowa-Minnesota game. As hard as I tried, though, I couldn’t talk myself out of backing the under. The total was among the lowest we’ve seen all season at 33, but the Hawkeyes have a way of not scoring while keeping opponents down with a strong defense. And it all worked out in Iowa’s 13-10 victory putting them 8-3 against the UNDER.
I was this close to throwing down on Duke on the moneyline in their contest with Pitt. It was a good matchup for the Dookies, who have played well all season. Instead I took the gift of 7.5 points and cashed a winner. Never giving up the Blue Devils scored twice in the final 9 ½ minutes failing on the 2-point conversion after each score. As painful as it was, Duke got me a win in the 28-26 setback.
I’ve followed the Mountain West Conference closely this season and noticed that the line for the San Jose State-Utah State matchup was a little funny. The Spartans were overvalued in a few of their games barely beating Nevada and Colorado State as a favorite of more than 20 points. They are having a good season but the Aggies are their kryptonite so catching the home team as a 3-point dog was too good to pass up. And USU won its 10th straight in the series 35-31 giving me a nice 3-0 weekend. It’s on to Week 13 with (hopefully) more UTR winners on the docket.
South Carolina Gamecocks ( +14.5 ) at Clemson Tigers
Rivalry games are always a crapshoot, but South Carolina comes into this one with a boatload of confidence after smacking Tennessee last week. The Gamecocks ended Tennessee’s CFP hopes with a dominant 63-38 win behind a special performance from Spencer Rattler. The OU transfer tossed six TD passes and you could make the argument the Cocks have the better QB in this matchup putting them in a good spot to snap an eight-game losing streak in the series. And they’d like nothing better than to eliminate their rival from playoff contention. And honestly, I’m not sold on Clemson. Sure they’re 10-1 but they’ve looked beatable in some of their games and don’t have the same swagger as past Dabo Swinney teams. I think Clemson is overvalued in this matchup with the Gamecocks looking good with a pair of TDs in their back pocket.
Utah Utes ( -30.5 ) at Colorado Buffaloes
I hate to pick on Colorado, but boy are the Buffs bad. Getting more than 30 points in each of their last three games, the Buffs were outscored by Oregon, USC and Washington 158-34 failing to cover the line in any of the games. Those are three of the top teams in the Pac-12 and guess what? The Buffs get another on Saturday. The Utes felt they let one get away last week losing to Oregon 20-17. They had chances and just didn’t execute dropping them out of a spot in the conference championship so you know the Utes are going to be pissed. And battering a helpless opponent is one way to make the hurt go away. In some ways you could say it’s been a disappointing season for Utah, but wins against Colorado and in their bowl game still gets them double digit Ws. There’s also a slim chance of getting back to the Pac-12 title game.
UCF Knights at USF Bulls ( U 70 )
It’s been a horrible season for USF thanks to one of the worst defensive units in the country. After beating Howard 42-20 in Week 2, the Bulls have lost all nine games since allowing at least 40 points in seven of them. The total looks like an overreaction to USF’s inability to stop opponents since nobody is worse at it. USF is last in the FBS yielding an average of over 514 yards. One thing they’ve been good at is running the football with close to 200 yards rushing per game. And after watching Navy control the ground in its 17-14 win over UCF expect a lot of ground work from the Bulls chewing up time. Navy ran the ball 63 times throwing only one pass while holding the ball for nearly 40 minutes in the upset.
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