Free NCAA Football Mid-Major Week 3 Pick from Expert Handicapper
When it comes to successfully betting on college football, too many bettors get caught up with trying to cash in on the sharp betting lines for the marquee matchups on the board. Quite a few of my biggest unit wins over the years have come from the ranks of the Mid Majors and the softer lines you can find for many of their games on a regular basis.
I loved the "over 54" for last Saturday's UNLV home game against Texas El Paso, and my Rebels came through with ease in a 52-24 win. This week, I have turned my attention to Friday night's matchup between Georgia State and Memphis in a 7 p.m. kickoff on ESPN.
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NCAAF Week 3 Mid-Major Top 25 Betting Overview
The UCF Knights, out of the AAC, keep winning games and keep rising in the rankings coming off last season's perfect 13-0 straight-up run. Last week, the Knights shut out South Carolina State 38-0, but they could not cover the huge 52-point spread at home. They creeped up one more spot to No. 18 in the updated AP Top 25 while moving up two spots to No. 18 in the Coaches Poll.
The other nationally-ranked Mid Major heading into last week's action was the Mountain West's Boise State Broncos. They moved ahead of UCF in both major polls to No. 17 with a 62-7 thrashing of Connecticut after hammering Troy 56-20 in their season opener. The Broncos are also 2-0 against the spread, with each game going over the total line.
As far as a Mid Major knocking on the door in the national rankings, the AAC's Houston Cougars top that list in a conference that should be fun to watch all season long.
NCAAF Mid-Major Free Pick of the Week: Georgia State at Memphis
The Sun Belt's Georgia State Panthers were dealt a big dose of reality last Saturday in a 41-7 loss to the ACC's North Carolina State Wolfpack as 24.5-point road underdogs. This Friday night, they will stay on the road as 27.5-point underdogs against the Memphis Tigers, which are also members of the AAC. The total line for this game from Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium has been set at 59 points.
The Panthers' offense ran into a brick wall against NC State to highlight some of the team's weaknesses on this side of the ball. They needed a last-second touchdown to get past Kennesaw State in their season opener in a 24-20 win. Dan Ellington is the offense with 381 yards passing and another 107 yards running the ball, which makes a weak offense very one-dimensional. Shut down Ellington and you essentially shutdown Georgia State.
Memphis lost a heartbreaker to Navy last Saturday in its conference opener. It saw its fourth-quarter lead fall apart in a 22-21 loss as a 6.5-point road favorite. Brady White has gotten the start at quarterback for the Tigers, and he has thrown for 503 yards and five touchdowns in his first two games. Darrell Henderson has led the ground game with 288 yards rushing and four scores on 22 carries. The key to Friday night's matchup is a better effort on defense against a team it should flourish against.
Memphis should be able to cover the 27.5 points on Friday night, but I am going with the "under" on the inflated 59-point total line as this week's free pick for Doc's. The Tigers will put up their fair share of points, but I see the Panthers struggling to get into the end zone against the Memphis defense on the road. The total has stayed under in nine of Georgia State's last 12 road games.
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