Fourth Down and Inches
by Doc - 09/25/2007
It's always real gratifying when one has an outstanding week. That high only causes one to work harder, with the desire to make the next week even better. It's not always about the money, but it's the drive to be the best in your field. Even after 36 years, that desire is present more than ever.
It always puts a smile on my face when you just know you have the right side and the game played out as expected. That was definitely the case with the Iowa-Wisconsin game, when we cashed both the side and total for a net gain of eight units. I really felt the posted total of 43 ½ was surprisingly steep.
Both teams have outstanding defenses, especially the team from Iowa City. Unfortunately, the Hawkeyes offense is terrible because of the numerous injuries. As for the Badgers, the defense has yet to be tested and when all is said and done, I think we will find this Wisconsin team to be not as strong as in years past. The offense hasn't produced much against questionable competition and the major problem is the rushing attack. This has been a staple of the program for over a decade, but the punishing ground attack has been limited thus far. I have stated this before and will continue to go out on a limb despite the undefeated record; this Wisconsin team is not the ninth best team in the land.
Bucky hosts Michigan State this week and then the Badgers will spend much of the season on the road, with four of their remaining six conference games being away from Camp Randall. The road schedule starts with trips to Illinois and Penn State and this should clear the air about my before mentioned statement.
Two weeks ago, I went against Ohio State, expecting the Buckeyes to take some time to mold the youth into major conference players. Obviously that has not been the case, as this team continues to roll and has been by far the most impressive team in the conference. It's starting to look again that it may be their annual November showdown with Michigan for all the marbles, Michigan has a history of beating Ohio State when they have nothing nationally to play for. The Buckeyes are on the road this week in the Twin Cities, entering as a 22 ½-point favorite. I would not lay that much, however, and certainly would not put money on the dog. As of this writing I have not seen a posted total, but the over may be worth a look.
The best game in the Big Ten this week may take place in Champaign, Illinois, when Penn State takes on the Illini. Those of you that do not follow the Big Ten much may be saying, "How can the Lions only be favored by three points?" Many feel this should be a cakewalk, but not so fast my friend, as the former Indiana coach would say. Illinois is a much-improved team from 2006 and I have stated before this team will be the surprise in the conference. The Illini won just two games last season but were in tight in several more. In fact, their meeting with Penn State last year was a 26-12 defeat, but that score was misleading. The Illini had more first downs, 19-10, and also had a 358-184 advantage in total yards. Illinois led 9-3 at the half, but the Lions returned a fumble for a touchdown and never looked back after that. In order for the Illini to pull the upset, QB Juice Williams must stay healthy. Will I back Illinois this week? They have another home game the following week; the Illini will be on my list for a possible big play.
Two factors I look for is a team looking for revenge or a team that has overpowering personnel. A club that fits that bill this week is Central Florida, who hosts UL-Lafayette this week in Orlando. Coach George O'Leary has turned this program around and is starting to get some of the top players out of the state of Florida. Playing in a new stadium, they took the Longhorns to the wire and walloped Memphis. This is the third home game for the Knights and spells trouble for the Cajuns.
As for revenge, several other games fit the category, that being Notre Dame - Purdue, Pittsburgh - Virginia, and Clemson - Georgia Tech. I will not mention the one I really love, but you can be sure you will see it as a strong selection and it will easily cash.
It should be a great game on Friday night when the Mountaineers invade Tampa to take on the Bulls of South Florida. I have closely followed the Bulls because one their defensive coaches, Dan McCarney is a former coach from Wisconsin. I have never seen a more motivated guy that was able to get the best out of his players. West Virginia will be looking for revenge after getting beat, 24-19, in Morgantown last season. Revenge may be on their mind; however, I would prefer the home dog.
For those of you that are in your early years of handicapping and wagering, I said it before and will say it again, "Put most of your action in college football." Year after year, most of the money over the weekend wagered goes the way of the professionals. There is much more information about each team available, plus most of the games can be viewed. That being said, the oddsmakers also have this information and can put forth a solid line on each game.
Each week over 100 college teams take the field and it is almost impossible for the oddsmakers to get a handle on each team. Remember winning a $100 bet on the Packers, is the same as winning a $100 on the Kent State Flashes. In my opinion if you do your homework, Saturdays will always be more profitable then Sundays.
Speaking of Sundays, the team in our backyard has been the surprise of the league thus far into the season. The Green Bay Packers are 3-0 and have already beaten three playoff teams from 2006. QB Favre continues to move up the record books and will pass Dan Marino next week for most touchdown passes thrown. What is more remarkable is that he is doing it with a bunch of no-name players on offense. They still do not have a solid running back and eventually this will catch up with them, when teams drops seven guys into pass coverage because their front four will be able to stop the run. That being said, they have a strong defense and this alone can breed success in the NFC. Just look at the Bears success from the last couple of seasons. It will be interesting to see if Favre can keep up his conservative style of just managing the game. He has never done this, but winning can change people.
So where does Favre rank among the list of all-time greats? Believe it or not, I do not have him in the top five, but in the top 10. The best of all time, in my book, is Joe Montana because of his four Super Bowl victories. Winning is still what it is all about and Favre has just one Super Bowl ring. If he can somehow win another one, then he definitely will move into the top five and maybe the top three.
With the success of our Football service last weekend, I would encourage you to invest some of those winnings into our NHL Hockey Service. We have a full-time handicapper on staff and he has put up big numbers the last two seasons despite releasing only one game each night. He really caught fire during the last three months and expect him to pick up where he left off when the season starts next Wednesday, Oct. 3. Like I stated before, betting the smaller sports gives a great advantage to the expert handicapper and money is still money regardless of how you get it. Hockey features some of the lowest prices on the net and I would encourage you to check out our homepage for picks packages. A full season package is just $595 and that will give you nine months of action.
This week we will be going with our Big Three, topped by a 6-unit selection from the Big Ten. In fact, all three of these games will be from the Big Ten, the conference we have dominated for the past 36 years. Monthly and yearly packages are still available and we expect to keep the ball rolling after a dominating 9-2, +29 units performance last week. I encourage you to give our sports office a call @ (800) 356-9182 to talk with me direct, or you can always sign-up online.
Best of Luck this week,