Free NCAA Football Mid-Major Week 4 Pick from Expert Handicapper
Too many college football bettors tend to overlook the value that can be found betting on Mid-Major matchups. They comprise almost half the games that are played among the 10 conferences that make up Division IA (FBS) football. Sometimes the best value on the board can be found in games between Mid Majors and a team from one of the Power 5 conferences, which is the case this week for my free Mid-Major pick for Doc's Sports.
Last week, I went the "under 59" in the Memphis Tigers' home game against Georgia State as my free pick. I felt really good about the Tigers also covering the 27.5-point spread, but they exceeded expectations with a 59-22 romp that unfortunately took this game "over" a closing line that actually jumped to 63 points.
NCAAF Week 4 Mid-Major Top 25 Betting Overview
This week's AP Top 25 update has No. 16 Central Florida as the highest-ranked Mid Major in the nation out of the AAC after Boise State fell out of the rankings at No. 17 with a 44-21 loss to Oklahoma State as a slight two-point road favorite. UCF remained idle after its road game against North Carolina was postponed due to Hurricane Florence.
The Knights will look to extend their current straight-up winning streak to 16 games this Friday night as 13.5-point home favorites against the Conference USA Florida Atlantic Owls.
The BYU Cougars slipped into the national rankings at No. 25 after moving to 2-1 SU on the year with last Saturday's stunning 24-21 upset against the Big Ten's Wisconsin Badgers as heavy 23.5-point road underdogs. This Saturday, the Cougars will face McNeese State at home in a game that is currently "off the board".
NCAAF Mid-Major Free Pick of the Week: Akron at Iowa State
The Akron Zips, out of the MAC, will try and take down their second Power 5 opponent in a row this Saturday as heavy 18.5-point road underdogs against the Big 12's Iowa State Cyclones in a High Noon showdown. The current total line for this game stands at 45.
The Zips opened their season a week late after a game against Nebraska was cancelled. They got things going with a routine 41-7 victory against Morgan State as heavy 42.5-point home favorites. They caught everyone's attention last Saturday with a stunning 39-34 road upset against the Big Ten's Northwestern Wildcats as 21-point underdogs. The total easily went over the closing 45.5-point line in that game.
With 80 points on the board in two games, it is safe to say that Akron knows how to move the ball down the field. Kato Nelson has thrown for 509 yards and five touchdowns in his fist two games, and Van Edwards Jr. has gained 162 yards on the ground with two scores on 31 carries. The Zips' defense did its part in last week's upset with two interceptions returned for scores to help erase an 18-point deficit.
Iowa State also has two games under its belt, starting with a 13-3 loss on Sept. 8 to Iowa as a 3.5-point road underdog. In last Saturday's Big 12 opener against No. 5 Oklahoma, the Cyclones were able to cover as 18.5-point underdogs at home in a 37-27 loss. The total went over 54 points in that contest and it has now gone over in six of Iowa State's last nine games played at home.
The simple fact that the Cyclones were able to put up 27 points against the Sooners tells me something. This should set the stage for bigger and better things from quarterback Zeb Noland and running back David Montgomery as team leaders on offense. Noland threw for 360 yards and two scores against Oklahoma, and Montgomery added 82 yards and a score on 21 carries.
Last season in Akron, the Cyclones rolled to a 41-14 victory against the Zips as 10-point favorites with the total staying under 63 points. With a much more manageable total line this time around in conjunction with a more productive Akron offense, I am going with the "Over 45" as my free Mid-Major pick of the week for Doc's.
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