NCAA Football Betting: Fading the Top 25 Weekly Free Picks
by Aaron Smith - 11/11/2014
After five straight weeks of profit, the Fade the Top 25 selections went 1-2 last week. I could probably spend the entire article complaining about Utah's Kaelin Clay making the boneheaded move of the century by dropping the ball at the one-yard line, but I'll spare you all. Needless to say, that Utah wager would have been in great shape were it not for a 14-point turnaround on that one play. If you haven't seen, take a few seconds out of your day to see the worst of the worst from this season so far. Oklahoma looked good in the first quarter, but Baylor totally dominated the last three quarters. Wake Forest kept it close against a Clemson squad that didn't appear interested.
The Top 25 as a whole had a little bit of a down week. The two top SEC teams (Mississippi State and Ole Miss) that played non-FBS opponents last week both failed to cover the spread despite winning by a large margin. Florida State and Miami will be the showcase game of the weekend. Can anyone stop the Seminoles before the four-team playoff?
Play #1- Georgia -2.5 (#368) vs. Auburn: Remember the ending of last year's Georgia vs. Auburn contest? Of course you do. It was probably the most memorable finish of the college football season. Georgia led until Auburn put up a Hail Mary as the clock wound down, and Ricardo Louis ended up with the ball and a touchdown after one of the most miraculous tipped-pass plays you will ever see. You better believe Georgia remembers that game as well. The Bulldogs have had this game circled on their calendar all year. It would be hard to find a loss tougher to take than that game. Mark Richt's team gets Todd Gurley back this weekend. Auburn's defense, which looked tremendous through the first few weeks of the year, is once again struggling in a big way. Look for a lot of points in this game, but I trust the Georgia defense to get a key stop more than I trust the Auburn defense. Auburn is in a bad spot now for the four-team playoff, and Georgia has more reasons to be pumped up for this game. The Bulldogs exact some measure of revenge.
Play #2- Clemson -3 (#339) vs. Georgia Tech: We faded Clemson last week at Wake Forest and won as the Tigers played a lackluster game, but we'll back them this weekend. Deshaun Watson will start for Clemson in this one, and he is a difference-maker. While Cole Stoudt was under center, the Tigers offense was a shell of its former self. Watson gives them the dual-threat quarterback that they need. I think Watson's ceiling is unlimited. He'll be up against a Georgia Tech defense that has been torched on multiple occasions this year. North Carolina's Marquise Williams, another dual-threat quarterback, led the mediocre Tar Heels to 579 yards and 48 points against Georgia Tech. Clemson's defense is tremendous. The Tigers rank second in the nation in total defense and fourth in the nation in rushing defense. Georgia Tech's triple option will likely have a hard time getting going against this extremely strong defensive front. We get some line value on Clemson here because they have been shaky on offense in the past few weeks. That should change with Watson back under center. Clemson makes a statement with their star back in the fold.
Play #3- Washington +9 (#365) vs. Arizona: The Wildcats have been losing a little steam in the past few weeks. The offense that looked so good early in the year has been slowed down by the past couple solid defenses they have played. Washington still has lots of problems on the offensive side of the ball, but the Huskies defense is one of the best in the Pac-12. Arizona failed to cover the number against Colorado at home last week despite a +4 turnover margin. Washington isn't likely to give them the game the way Colorado did last week. Look for the Huskies defense to keep them in the game here. The Wildcats are also in a bit of a look-ahead spot. They go to Utah next week for a tough game and then finish against rival Arizona State. This game likely isn't the one they have put a high priority on. Arizona probably finds a way to win, but I don't think they'll be able to win by double digits.
Fade the Top 25 Selections Year to Date: 18 Wins 18 Losses (-$180)
Overall Top 25 ATS Record Last Week- 11 Wins 13 Losses
Overall Top 25 ATS Record This Season - 112 Wins (48.4%) 116 Losses (50.2%) 3 Ties (1.4%)
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Read more articles by Aaron Smith
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