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Every Friday, Braden Gall picks his top college football games against the spread.
Every Friday for entertainment purposes only, I will bring you my top college football picks against the spread. I do not condone, approve or encourage gambling on sports in any way. But if you are a fan of football — college or pro — and you don't think gambling has played a huge role in the growth and popularity of the sport, then you are simply being ignorant. And behind closed doors, the powers that be understand the impact betting has had on the game of football.
2012 Record Against The Spread: 32-23
Last Week: 6-2
Note: All lines are as of date of publication
Western Michigan (+3.5) at Kent State
Darrell Hazell has done an excellent job in one and a half seasons with the Flashes. The only loss of the year came on the road against an SEC opponent and, against the spread, his team is equally strong at 5-1. The Flashes have won their last two games by a combined 72-31 behind 604 yards rushing. Western Michigan will be without starter Alex Carder at quarterback and has lost two out of the three games. Look for the Golden Flashes to continue down its winning path, both in the standings and against the number. Prediction: Kent State -3.5
Indiana (+3) at Navy
The Midshipmen are always strong at running the football, but its 233.3 per game average is well-below what Navy has grown accustomed too over the last decade. The Hoosiers, meanwhile, boast the Big Ten's top passing attack under the guidance of second-year coach Kevin Wilson. A win over Navy would triple Indiana's win total from a year ago and give the fans in Bloomington a lot to be excited about it. Navy has no chance of stopping a team that scores over 35 points per game and just dropped 49 on Ohio State. Prediction: Indiana +3
San Diego State (+6.5) at Nevada
The Wolfpack gets star quarterback Cody Fajardo back after missing last weekend's contest. He leads the Mountain West in total offense and the Aztecs defense, which ranks 67th nationally in scoring (95th in pass efficiency defense) and has allowed 72 points in its only two road games, will have a tough time stopping the Nevada rushing attack. The nation's leading rusher, Stefphon Jefferson at 162.9 yards per game, is happy to have his backfield mate back in action. Take the Pack to win its sixth straight fairly comfortably. Prediction: Nevada -6.5
Penn State (+3.5) at Iowa
A battle of two Big Ten unbeatens should be defensively minded in Iowa City. Walk-on turned superstar bowling ball tailback Mark Weisman has an injured ankle and is doubtful for the Hawkeyes, leaving the depleted backfield in the questionable hands of James Vandenberg. On the other side, Matt McGloin has played superbly in a new offensive scheme that is as balanced as any in the nation the last month. The Nittany Lions are 5-1 against the spread this season and are a few plays from being unbeaten. They are simply the better team. Prediction: Penn State +3.5
USF (+6.5) at Louisville
The South Florida Bulls are one of the least trustworthy teams in the nation these days. And better may point to three straight close wins for the Cards by a combined 21 points over inferior teams. However, all three were on the road. The three best offensive yardage totals of the season have come at home for Charlie Strong's bunch and USF has done little to prove it belongs on the same field as the 6-0 Big East frontrunners. The Bulls have lost four straight by an average of 11.6 points per game and lost this bout by 10 at home last fall. Prediction: Louisville
Other games to investigate:
Stanford (-2) at Cal
The Cardinal are a superior team that crushed the Bears the last time they visited Berkeley. But it's a rivalry game.
Texas Tech (-1.5) at TCU
Tech hasn't won back-to-back Big 12 games since Nov. 2009. The Toads defense is slightly different than West Virginia.
Kansas State (+3) at West Virginia
I wouldn't bet against Bill Snyder and Collin Klein.
Northern Illinois (-16.5) at Akron
The Huskies are the far superior team behind do-everything dynamo Jordan Lynch.
Colorado (+41) at USC
Isn't this entirely too many points? Even for the Buffaloes?
Iowa State (+14) at Oklahoma State
The Cyclones play these types of games close behind solid defense.
Minnesota (+17) at Wisconsin
Badgers have won eight straight in this series and the Gophers haven't won in Madison since 1994.
- by Braden Gall
2012 Trends Against the Spread:
Undefeated ATS: Arizona State (5-0-1), Utah St (7-0), Western Kentucky (6-0)
Winless ATS: Virginia (0-6-1)
|One Loss Against the Spread||One Win Against the Spread|
|Fresno State (6-1)||Auburn (1-5)|
|Kansas State (4-1-1)||Boston College (1-5)|
|Kent State (5-1)||Central Michigan (1-5)|
|UL Monroe (5-1)||Colorado (1-5)|
|Ole Miss (6-1)||Colorado St (1-6)|
|Northwestern (6-1)||Idaho (1-6)|
|Oregon State (4-1)||Kentucky (1-6)|
|Penn State (5-1)||Miami-OH (1-6)|
|San Jose State (5-1)||Michigan State (1-6)|
|South Carolina (6-1)||USC (1-5)|
|Texas Tech (5-1)||Syracuse (1-5)|
|TX-San Antonio (3-1)|
Other Noteables: Ball State (5-2), Duke (5-2), LSU (2-5), New Mexico (5-2), Northern Illinois (5-2), Toledo (5-2), UNLV (5-2)
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