The lock streak is dead but we will get back to our winning ways this week.
Last Week: 2-3
Lock of the Week: 6-1
Syracuse at Boston College (-4.5)
Listen, I am a pathetic 1-5 on BC games this year. It makes me feel sorry for myself like the 350 pound guy at the Chinese food buffet that is going up for his 4th helping of lukewarm crab rangoons and room temperature lo-mein. At this point I’m pulling a George Costanza and just going opposite of what I think.
I know Syracuse is due for the letdown factor and that Steve Addazio is coaching for his life. On top of that, ‘Cuse is allowing an embarrassing 4.9 yards per carry on the ground and the defense ranks dead last in the ACC in both points allowed and total yards allowed. If Addazio can’t get the run game cranked up against the Orange then it is just never going to happen this year.
All that being said, I still can’t figure out for the life of me why BC is favored by more than a field goal over a conference foe.
Indiana at Northwestern (-1.5)
There weren’t many teams that looked worse than Northwestern to start the year. After a one point loss against a very good Western Michigan team, the Wildcats had an inexcusable loss to Illinois State in a game where the offense couldn’t move the ball at all. Since that game, the Wildcats offense has improved each week and in the last two games Northwestern has put up almost 100 points.
Northwestern running back Justin Jackson is gunning for 1st Team All-Big Ten honors as his 698 yards leads the conference. Indiana’s defense is greatly improved from last year, but they are the 5th worst rushing defense in the conference and are allowing over 4.5 yards per carry in conference games.
Texas A&M (+18.5) at Alabama
This feels like an over-reaction to what people saw last week when Bama gave a beating to a Tennessee team that had all sorts of injuries on both sides of the ball. Meanwhile, A&M was on a bye after escaping with a 7 point overtime win over Tennessee the week before.
I’m not trying to formulate a hot take here but I guess I’m not as impressed with who ‘Bama has beaten this year as some of the national guys. The beatdown against USC to start the year was impressive, but USC has been a much better squad since making a QB change. Ole Miss was a nice road win but the Rebels win against Georgia is looking less and less impressive making their 3-3 record looking more and more mediocre (more to come on them).
I guess this is where the rubber meets the road as they say, because Alabama has far and away the best rush defense in the SEC. On the flip side, A&M has the #1 rushing offense with a ridiculous 6.8 yards per carry. Quarterback Trevor Knight has been good too averaging 250 yards per game passing which is the 4th highest in the league.
While the Alabama defense gets all of the headlines in the conference the A&M defense could make an argument for the best defense in the next tier. The Aggies are 2nd in the conference in sacks and turnovers forced. In other words, the A&M defense can make a big play when it needs to.
I think the Aggies offense keeps this one close with the help of the defense creating a turnover or two.
Ohio State (-19) at Penn State
Not that Urban Meyer needs extra motivation but James Franklin didn’t do his team any favors getting into a spat with the OSU coach last summer. Meyer likes another coach talking trash as much as Steve Addazio likes to get asked a moderately tough question in a press conference.
This is one of those games where you turn it on and the Penn State crowd is going absolutely bonkers at night and you immediately regret taking the road team. Then, J.T.Barrett leads two scoring drives to start the game, the crowd sits on its hands, and OSU cruises the rest of the night.
Lock of the Week
Ole Miss at LSU (-5.5)
LSU is finally playing up to its full potential. If you ask football guru Phil Steele, he’ll tell you that the LSU roster is as stacked with as many NFL players as Alabama or Ohio State. The team obviously didn’t play that way to start the year, but interim coach Ed Orgeron has this team playing much, much better----Tremendous even!
I already touched on the fact that some of Ole Miss’ "good losses" and "good wins" aren’t looking as "good" anymore. In the good loss category is FSU, and the ‘Noles are no longer considered a top tier team like they were to start the year. The Rebels’ best win came against Georgia, which doesn’t exactly look like a great team after a loss to Vandy at home last weekend.
Aside from that, the only thing that you need to know is that Ole Miss is getting absolutely shredded on the ground right now at a clip of 212 yards per game and 4.69 yards per carry. Does that seem like an issue with this guy healthy?
LSU coach Ed Orgeron said Leonard Fournette looks full speed going into the weekend. He does expect to us all... https://t.co/W9I3isQv0E— Edward Aschoff (@AschoffESPN) October 19, 2016