After a week off last week as the Temple Owls had their bye, the mid-major report betting report is back for the Week 5 edition. Doc's Sports has now been doing this article for four years. The goal of this weekly article is to attempt to show that specialization is a profitable betting strategy. For the mid-major betting report, we follow one team throughout the season and make selections on their games on a weekly basis. Temple was picked this year because of the intrigue surrounding the conference as well as their ability to have a breakout season.
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The Temple Owls are now 3-0 on the season. Temple had a bye week last weekend, but they picked up a hard-fought 25-23 win at UMass two weeks ago. This week the Owls take on the Charlotte 49ers on Friday night.
Through the first three years of the mid-major betting report, we had some tremendous results. In those three years combined, the selections went 18-12 and the profit for $100-per-game bettors was $1,590. Last year's report was a whole different story. We followed the Akron Zips last season, and I simply couldn't get a good read on that team. The result was a 3-8 season with a loss of $1,180.
I'll follow Temple Owls beat writers and listen to the team's press conferences. I'll also look for important information about the team on Twitter from a variety of sources. There will be a selection at the end of each article on the game. We'll be using the Doc's Sports Unit Betting System for every pick, which will allow readers to follow along and track the results.
Temple didn't play particularly well in their 25-23 win over UMass, but they did do enough to pick up the victory. The Owls turned the ball over three times, but 391 passing yards from P.J. Walker helped the team escape with a win.
The key statistic in that game was how each team did on third down. Temple was 8 for 19 on third-down-conversion attempts. UMass was a woeful 3 for 17 on third-down-conversion attempts. The Temple defense stood strong when it need to most.
Likely the most concerning statistic of all from that win was the fact that Temple averaged only 1.8 yards per carry on the ground. The Owls don't want to become one-dimensional and place too much on Walker and the passing game. Jahad Thomas had a lot of room to run in the Owls first two wins, but last game a poor UMass rushing defense managed to slow them down.
The 1-Unit play on Temple -10.5 in the last report was a loser as the Owls failed to cover the number.
Notes of Interest
-This week's game will played in Charlotte on Friday night, and weather could definitely be an issue. Hurricane Joaquin is churning towards the North Carolina coast, and weather reports are currently calling for heavy rain and wind gusts of 25 to 30 miles per hour on Friday night. That's clearly a reason for bettors to pay attention to the forecast as the game draws nearer.
-Mike Jensen, columnist for the Philadelphia Inquirer, wrote about how special teams have given Temple a much-needed edge so far this season. In the article, Matt Rhule speaks about being confident that if it weren't for the improvement in special teams, the Owls would not be unbeaten right now. Rhule put Ed Foley in charge of the special teams after 2014, and he's been thrilled with the work Foley has done with this group. It's important to note that Temple has several star players competing on the special teams units, and that has been key as well. Foley is teaching physicality, and the players have been buying in. Temple has a better average starting field position than their opponent in each of their first three contests.
-Charlotte only began their football program in 2013, and this is their first year as a member of Conference USA and the FBS.
-The Charlotte 49ers have a serious turnover problem. Charlotte has turned the ball over seven times in two consecutive games. No, I don't mean that they have seven turnovers total in two games (which would still be a lot), rather I mean they have turned it over seven times in two straight games for a total of 14 turnovers in two contests. Charlotte has fumbled the ball 12 times in total this year.
-Temple is 8-3 against the spread in their last 11 games on a Friday.
-The "under" is 4-1 in Temple's last five games overall.
-The under is 2-1 in Charlotte's first three games this season.
Temple vs. Charlotte College Football Odds
Temple opened as a 24-point favorite at most books. That line has been relatively steady, but the Owls are now favored by 23.5 at most books. The total is where the movement has been. The opening total was 48 points in this one, but the line moved down big on Wednesday (likely because of the weather reports), and the posted total now sits at 45 points.
Temple vs. Charlotte College Football Picks
With a major threat of heavy rain and wind, the under certainly makes sense here. Charlotte's problems taking care of the ball could complicate that a bit, but it all depends on where the turnover takes place. Temple is aggressive on defense, and I think it's likely Charlotte will have several turnovers again. While I don't usually do this, I'm going to recommend two plays on this one. We'll take Temple to cover, because it's hard to imagine Charlotte scoring many points at all here. With the weather reports, I'll also put a small play on the under.
Pick #107 - 2-Unit Play: Take Temple -23.5
Pick #107- 1-Unit Play: Take Under 45
Season Results- 1 Win 2 Losses (-$130)
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Read more articles by Aaron Smith
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