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College, NFL trends

By Bruce Marshall  () 

COLLEGE

 

UL-LAFAYETTE at GEORGIA STATE

Ragin’ Cajuns on 17-7-2 spread uptick since early 2018 for Billy Napier. Panthers struggling as dogs, only 4-10-4 in role since 2018. Tech edge: UL-Lafayette, based on team trends.

 

FLORIDA ATLANTIC at GEORGIA SOUTHERN

Willie Taggart, now at FAU, was only 8-13-1 in 1+  years vs. line at FSU as his once-gaudy spread success waned. Owls covered five of six on road last season for Lane Kiffin, who posted 10-4 spread mark in 2019. GSU didn’t cover in opener vs. Campbell but still 10-4 vs. spread last 14 at Statesboro. Tech edge: Georgia Southern, based on team trends.

 

WAKE FOREST at NC STATE

Tobacco Road rivalry has one of strongest home-team trends in ACC, with hosts 11-2 vs. points last 13 meetings. NC State, however, enters 2020 having dropped 10 of 11 against the number and only 1-5 vs. points last six at Raleigh. Wake has won and covered last two meetings, but Deacons dropped all four vs. spread on ACC trail a year ago. Tech edge: Slight to Wake Forest, based on recent NC State negatives.

 

UCF at GEORGIA TECH

Golden Knights covered all four vs. non-AAC foes in 2019, now 10-3 vs. spread last 13 vs. those entries. Jackets struggled in Geoff Collins’ debut in 2019, only 3-8-1 vs. line, but did shock Florida State in opener Saturday. GT still just 1-6 vs. spread as host last year. Tech edge: UCF, based on team trends. 

 

CHARLOTTE at NORTH CAROLINA

49ers improved last season but were still only 2-5 vs. line away from home. Charlotte did cover 2020 opener at App State. Mack Brown closed last season with a rush at UNC, winning and covering handily in last three, and win/cover steak now at four after success vs. Syracuse in opener. Tech edge: UNC, based on team trends.

 

BOSTON COLLEGE at DUKE

Jeff Hafley takes over at BC. Under Steve Addazio, Eagles were a pretty spunky underdog, 13-5-1 vs. spread in role last three years. Also 11-2 vs. spread last 13 as ACC visitors.  Duke’s David Cutcliffe sagged to 4-6-2 spread mark in 2019 but did cover 2020 opener at ND. Duke 5-10-2 vs. ACC since 2018 counting ND game. Tech edge: BC, based on team trends. 

 

MIAMI at LOUISVILLE

Hurricanes disappointed last season but were 3-0 as underdogs for Manny Diaz. Miami also entered 2020 on 11-19 spread skid but did cover opener vs. UAB. Cardinals in revenge mode after 52-27 loss at Hard Rock Stadium last year, but Scott Satterfield 5-2 vs. spread at home since arriving. His teams at App State and Louisville are 17-8-1 vs. spread since 2018. Canes Under 27-13 since 2017. Tech edge: Louisville and slight to Under, based on team and totals trends.   

 

SYRACUSE at PITTSBURGH

Old rivals back to days each campaigned as Eastern independent. Pitt has covered last three and nine of last 11 in series. Syracuse dipped to 4-8 SU and vs. line in 2019 after a smashing 2018, then gave up late cover in last week’s opener at UNC. Orange only 2-7 as dogs since last season. Unders 24-10 in Pitt games entering 2020. Tech edge: Under and Pitt, based on totals and team trends. 

 

APPALACHIAN STATE at MARSHALL

Mountaineers entered 2020 on 22-8-1 spread uptick since late in 2017 season (though missed cover in opener vs. Charlotte), also 11-2 vs. number last 13 as visitors. Herd entered this season 5-13 as home chalk since 2016, though did bomb outmanned EKU in 2020 opener. Marshall was just 9-17 vs. spread across previous two seasons. Tech edge: App State, based on team trends.

 

LIBERTY at WESTERN KENTUCKY

WKU was 7-2-1 vs. spread down the stretch last season. Hilltoppers surged in 2019 after loss to Louisville very similar to last week. Tech edge: WKU, based on recent trends.

 

LOUISIANA TECH at SOUTHERN MISS

If Skip Holtz is a dog here, note 19-8-1 spread mark in role since arriving at Tech in 2014 and 13-7-1 vs. spread last 21 away from Ruston entering Hattiesburg. Tech edge: Louisiana Tech, based on team trends. 

 

TEXAS STATE at UL-MONROE

Jake Spavital only 3-8-1 vs. line in TSU debut last season. Bobcats 1-1 vs. line thus far in 2020. TSU has lost four in row SU vs. ULM but has covered in four of last six meetings. After Army loss, ULM only 8-19 vs. spread last 27 on line for Matt Viator since late in 2017 campaign. Tech edge: Slight to Texas State, based on series trends. 

 

SMU at NORTH TEXAS

Metroplex rivalry. Home team has won and covered big the last three meetings, all decisions by 22 or 23 points. SMU’s Sonny Dykes just 1-6 vs. spread laying points away from Ford Stadium. But UNT entered season on 3-15 spread skid. Tech edge: Slight to UNT, based on series home trends. 

 

NAVY at TULANE

After Mids entered 2020 on 14-3 spread uptick, they were destroyed by BYU in opener. Navy still 20-10 as visiting dog for Ken Niumatalolo since 2009 and 18-10 last 28 as road dog. Wave, however, covered all six as host last year. Tech edge: Slight to Navy, based on extended trends. 

 

TROY at MIDDLE TENNESSEE

Blue Raiders were 9-4 as chalk in 2017-18 but fell back to 1-3 in role a year ago. Troy enters this season 2-5 vs. line its last seven as visitor. Tech edge: Slight to MTSU, based on team trends. 

 

SOUTH FLORIDA at NOTRE DAME

Jeff Scott, new coach at USF, trying to improve Bulls from 3-8 spread mark in last 11 as dogs under Charlie Strong. USF also just 2-8 last 10 as DD dog. Irish off superb 9-4 spread mark in 2019, including 5-2 as South Bend chalk, though failed to cover big price in Duke opener. Tech edge: Notre Dame, based on team trends. 

 

TULSA at OKLAHOMA STATE

Postponed from Sept. 12. Teams have not met regularly in recent years, but OSU scored 59 or more in winning and covering three meetings between 2010-17 and covered last year’s battle at Tulsa when scoring 40. Golden Hurricane 5-1 vs. spread away in 2019 and 3-1 as road dogs. OSU, however, on 13-4 spread uptick since late 2018, and Mike Gundy has remarkably covered last 14 non-Big 12 games dating to 2016. Tech edge: OK State, based on team and extended series trends.

 

NFL

 

CINCINNATI at CLEVELAND

Teams have split all four SU and vs. line last two seasons after Marvin Lewis’ Cincy teams really dominated series, winning and covering seven in row through 2017. Bengals 8-3 vs. spread last 11 as true visitors (not counting London vs. Rams last year). Browns only 5-11-1 vs. line since 2019, 3-5-1 last nine as hosts. Over 4-0-1 last five meetings. Tech edge: Bengals and Over, based on team and series totals trends.

 

LOS ANGELES RAMS at PHILADELPHIA

Rams haven’t played at Philly since 2014. L.A. entered 2020 on 14-7 spread uptick. Sean McVay 5-3 as dog since 2017 and 9-3 vs. spread last 12 away from L.A., also 6-0 vs. spread playing early games in Eastern time zone. Eagles on 4-13 spread skid since early in 2018 season (4-9 last 13 as home chalk), also Under last seven at Linc in 2019. Tech edge: Rams and Under, based on team and totals trends.

 

CAROLINA at TAMPA BAY

Panthers have covered five of last six at Raymond James, but totally different casts both ways these days. Since mid-2019, Carolina 1-6-1 vs. line. Bucs were 2-5 as chalk last season pre-Tom Brady. Panthers on 13-5 Over streak after Raiders opener. Bruce Arians 28-12 Over run with his Cards and Bucs teams. Tech edge: Over, based on totals trends. 

 

DENVER at PITTSBURGH

Vic Fangio now 8-4 as dog for Broncos after Monday’s loss to Titans. Broncos also now on 19-7 Under run after Titans game. Steelers on 18-6 Under run after Giants result. Tech edge: Under and slight to Broncos, based on totals and team trends. 

 

ATLANTA at DALLAS

Falcons won and covered their last four on road in 2019. Also 7-3 Under down stretch last year. Cowboys entered 2019 on 22-12 Over run. Tech edge: Slight to Falcons, based on team trends. 

 

SAN FRANCISCO at NEW YORK JETS

Niners 6-2 vs. spread as visitors last season en route to 13-7-1 overall spread mark. Jets covered four of last five as MetLife dogs in 2019, also 6-2 Under as hosts. Tech edge: Slight to 49ers and Under, based on team and totals trends.

 

BUFFALO at MIAMI

Series has mostly tilted Buffalo’s way the last seven years, with Bills 9-4-1 vs. line last 14 meetings vs. Dolphins. Bills Under 15-6 since late 2018 (though Over in Jets opener) but Over in last three in series with Dolphins. Tech edge: Slight to Bills, based on series trends. 

 

MINNESOTA at INDIANAPOLIS

Mike Zimmer’s Vikes teams only 3-6 last nine as dogs entering 2020. Vikings also Over last six regular-season games a year ago, Colts Over 11-5 last 16 at home. Tech edge: Over, based on totals trends. 

DETROIT at GREEN BAY

Recent series trends favor Lions, who have covered last six meetings. Even after Chicago loss, notoriously fast-starting Detroit 13-7-1 vs. spread in first four games of season since 2015. Lions did drop last five vs. spread away in 2019, with Matthew Stafford absence not helping. Pack 9-4 vs. spread last 13 at Lambeau, even with recent problems covering vs. Detroit. Tech edge: Lions, based on series trends. 

 

NEW YORK GIANTS at CHICAGO

Giants covered four of last five as road dogs in 2019, 10-3 vs. spread in role since 2018. Giants have covered last two years vs. Bears, and dog team has covered last three in series since 2016. G-Men also Over 8-2 last 10 away. Bears entered 2020 on 4-13 spread skid but did rally in opener vs. Lions. Tech edge: Giants, based on team and series dog trends.

 

JACKSONVILLE at TENNESSEE

Jaguars no covers last five at Nashville. Overs last five in series at Nissan Stadium. Into Monday at Denver, Titans were on 16-9 regular-season Over run since mid-2018. Tech edge: Titans and Over, based on series and totals trends. 

 

WASHINGTON at ARIZONA

Ron Rivera was 19-12 last 31 as dog with Panthers, and Washington won last week as short vs. Eagles. Cards 0-3 as chalk the last two seasons, though they are 11-5-1 vs. spread overall since last year for Kliff Kingsbury. Tech edge: Slight to Cardinals, based on team trends. 

 

BALTIMORE at HOUSTON

Ravens on 10-1 spread surge on road since mid-2018. Texans 2-6 vs. number as NRG Stadium host in 2019. After K.C. loss in opener, Houston only 5-5 as dog since last season. Tech edge: Ravens, based on team trends. 

 

KANSAS CITY at LOS ANGELES CHARGERS

Chargers debut at SoFi Stadium in front of empty house. After opening win against Texans, Chiefs now on 10-0 SU and spread win streak since mid-2019. Andy Reid 6-1 vs. spread last seven vs. Bolts dating to last Chargers game in San Diego at end of 2016. Chargers were 1-8 vs. number last nine as hosts at the MLS stadium in Carson. Tech edge: Chiefs, based on team trends.

 

NEW ENGLAND at SEATTLE

If Bill Belichick is a dog, note 12-3 spread mark in role since 2010. Seahawks only 2-7 last nine as hosts since late 2018. Seattle also 9-4 Over last 13 as host. Super Bowl XLIX rematch. Tech edge: Patriots, especially if dogs, and slight to Over based on team and totals trends. 

 

NEW ORLEANS at LAS VEGAS

Raiders’ Vegas debut Monday night in front of no fans at Allegiant Stadium. Saints won and covered last seven on road in 2019 and 13-4 Over last 17 away since late 2017. Tech edge: Saints and Over, based on team and totals trends.

 

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