The new football season is only a couple of weeks old and Doc’s Sports Services is already off to a fast start with a 6-2 record last weekend that left us +18 units utilizing our Unit Betting System. The first of two big plays last weekend was six units on Oregon State as a seven-point underdog at home against Wisconsin. The Beavers came through with a 10-7 straight-up win. Turning to Week 1 in the NFL, we went with five units on San Francisco as a five-point road dog over Green Bay. The 49ers went on to pull off the 30-22 upset in one of the hardest places in the world to win on the road.
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Looking ahead, it looks more and more like the Big Ten is getting weaker by the week. Nebraska tumbled out of the rankings with a 36-30 loss to UCLA as a 3.5-point favorite on the road. As mentioned above, Wisconsin followed suit with its loss to Oregon State. We feel that the Badgers were a bit overrated to begin with, especially on the offensive side of the ball. They already fired their offensive line coach this week and it is painfully evident that the loss of Paul Chryst as their offensive coordinator has had a negative impact on this side of the ball. Opponents have already figured out to stack the box and force this team to throw the ball. Wisconsin returns home this Saturday to face Utah State as a 14-point favorite, and as tempting as it may be to look for a strong rebound at home, place your money elsewhere this week. Add in the fact the Badgers’ wide receiver Jared Abbrederis may be out of the lineup due to injury give us even more reason to walk away from this one.
If you are looking for a Big Ten team that is probably still underrated, take a second look at Purdue. Head coach Danny Hope has his strongest team yet entering his fourth season at the helm. The Boilermakers gave a very talented Notre Dame squad all it could handle last week in a 20-17 loss as 14-point road underdogs. There is another golden opportunity this Saturday as Purdue are 24-point favorites at home against Eastern Michigan. The Boilers are off the following week before resuming this four-game homestand that could prove to be very profitable.
Another team in the conference that could be in for a long season is Iowa. So far the Hawkeyes are off to a 1-1 SU start in what has to be the easiest schedule in the Big Ten. They started off with a harder-than-expected 18-17 victory over Northern Illinois as 7.5-point favorites on the road and then looked awful in a 9-6 loss to Iowa State last Saturday as 3.5-point favorites at home. Through two weeks, Iowa is ranked 105th in the nation in rushing yards and 104th in points. The wolves are starting to howl as Kirk Ferentz’s long-time tenure as the team’s head coach is becoming more tenuous with every passing week.
Michigan tried to bounce back from an unexpected beatdown against Alabama on opening day with a strong performance last week against Air Force, but the Wolverines looked less than spectacular in a 31-25 win as 21.5-point favorites at home. This week could be just what the doctor ordered with Massachusetts coming to town. The Minutemen joined the Mid-American Conference this season, moving-up from Division IAA, and are 46.5-point underdogs for Saturday’s contest.
The revenge factor in college football is always a huge variable to take into consideration when handicapping a particular contest. This week’s game of interest pits UCLA at home as a 17-point favorite against Houston. Last season the Cougars won, 38-24, as 1.5-point home favorites, but that was then and this is now. The Bruins are coming off that huge win over Nebraska and Houston is starting to realize just how much quarterback Case Keenum meant to this team. The Cougars’ defense has given up 86 points in back-to-back losses and the prospect for any kind of meaningful turnaround in the near future does not look too good.
Wherever you enjoy watching the games, whether it is at home or at your favorite local sports bar, always remember to keep Doc’s Sports Service in mind when trying to plan your football picks. With over 40 years experience handicapping football that includes an ultra keen eye towards the Big Ten, we are just a phone call away at 1-800-356-9182 from putting that wealth of knowledge to work for you.
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