ATLANTA - SEPTEMBER 24: Embry Peeples #24 of the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets carries the ball against the North Carolina Tar Heels at Bobby Dodd Field on September 24, 2011 in Atlanta, Georgia. Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)
New rule, no picking OU, UA, or CU in this column, ever. Away we go...
Last week: 1-3
Season record: 5-3
All lines according to the Wynn casino as of 10:00 a.m., on 9/28
Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (-9.5) at N.C. State Wolfpack
This line opened at Georgia Tech minus six. Within an hour of the numbers' release it had skyrocketed all the way up to -11 with heavy money coming in on the Yellow Jackets. It slowly inched it's way all the way up to 12 before sharp money started jumping on the other side to bring it back down to 9.5. The fact that the early money kept coming in rapidly even after the number reached 10 makes me feel good about grabbing it at 9.5. The Wolfpack's only wins have come against Liberty and South Alabama and they are coming off a blowout road loss to Cincinnati. Even after the win against UNC, this GT team is being undervalued and all signs point to athletic wide receiver Stephen Hill taking the field on Saturday. I'd expect to see this head back up to 10 or higher after public money starts coming on on the Jackets so we'll grab it at 9.5.
The pick - Georgia Tech -9.5
Western Michigan Broncos at Connecticut Huskies (-2.5)
Similar to the game above, WMU-UCONN had a huge swing shortly after the opening number was released. After starting out UCONN -8 on Sunday night, it plummeted all the way down to Connecticut -2 before finally settling in at 2.5. Getting this in under 3 is crucial, as the Huskies love to keep any game against mildly decent competition close. The Broncos are beat up after a long, physical game against Illinois and will suffer another close road defeat this weekend.
The pick - UCONN -2.5
Michigan St. Spartans (+3) at Ohio St. Buckeyes
Let's call this one the Buffaloes road game effect. The final score from the Colorado - OSU game looked a lot more dominant than it actually was. Buff fans know how much of it was aided by the special teams gaffs and OSU is a lot closer to the team that was blown out in Miami than the team that took care of business last weekend in Columbus. The Spartans ran into a buzz saw in South Bend against a Notre Dame team that was fuming off of two consecutive defeats. Unless Braxton Miller goes wild on the ground, the Spartans win this game outright.
The pick - Michigan State +3
Florida Atlantic Owls at Louisiana Ragin Cajuns (-9.5)
FAU's first three games of the season were on the road against Florida, Michigan State and Auburn. Now the Owls have to head to Lafayette for their first conference game of the year. The Cajuns have come out of the gate looking strong after putting 34 points in a road loss to Oklahoma State. The line has steadied at 9.5 after opening at 7.5. Anything under 10 is golden here.
The pick - Lousiana-Lafayette -9.5