A best bet finally cashed for Luckett’s Locks in Week 7, but it did not get us to a winning weekend. It’s been that kind of year.
Following a 3-4 against the spread (ATS) mark, our season record has fallen to 19-25-2 overall. However, six games under .500 can be easily made up for in just one big weekend.
After studying the data and matchups, Luckett’s Locks has found some more plays for this weekend despite a thin card.
Let’s get to cover town.
Wisconsin @ Purdue (+3.5)
Wisconsin enters Week 8 with a 3-3 overall mark, but the Badgers are still in the thick of the hunt in the Big Ten West race. Once again, the defense is delivering under coordinator Jim Leonhard as this unit ranks third nationally in yards per play allowed. However, Wisconsin is 100th in yards per play offense.
Purdue is 4-2 on the season and is fresh off the biggest road win of the Jeff Brohm era. The Boilermakers stunned Iowa at Kinnick Stadium in a double-digit point win. Brohm’s pass-heavy offense was too much for Iowa as receiver David Bell is one of the best wideouts in college football.
A lot of reasons we loved Purdue over Iowa remain true a week later in the matchup against Wisconsin. Brohm has played Paul Chryst’s team well with a 3-0 ATS record since arriving in the Big Ten. Meanwhile, Wisconsin cannot move the football and Purdue has an advantage on that side of the ball with a much-improved defense led by defensive end George Karlaftis.
The Wisconsin defense does not force a bunch of turnovers and as long as Purdue takes care of the ball, the Boilermakers have a chance to pick up consecutive divisional wins and emerge as the team to beat in the West.
Give us the points with the home dog.
Western Michigan @ Toledo (+1.5)
Through the first half of the season, Western Michigan has been the class of the MAC. Tim Lester’s program beat a good Pittsburgh team on the road and are 5-2 on the season. However, the Broncos suffered an upset at home against Ball State and now find themselves one game back of Northern Illinois in the West. However, WMU is balanced on offense with a senior quarterback and two strong tailbacks.
Toledo consistently recruits as well as any program in the MAC. Jason Candle has a talented team in year six, but the Rockets are 0-3 in one-possession games. However, the Rockets have one of the top yards per play offenses and the top yards per play defense in the conference.
Toledo already has two conference losses, and this is a must-win spot for the Rockets. When digging deeper, Toledo grades out better than WMU in pretty much all of the down-to-down metrics. The better team is catching points at home.
Take the home dog.
LSU (+9) @ Ole Miss
LSU has fired Ed Orgeron. Ed Orgeron is now in interim coach-mode. Let the games begin.
The Tigers have found a rushing attack over the last two weeks, and Tyrion Davis-Price rushed for about 2,000 yards against Florida running counter. Meanwhile, the ground game success has taken a bunch of pressure off Max Johnson who can now use play-action to hit on vertical throws. The defense stopped the run against Florida but still has issues.
Ole Miss bounced back after the Alabama loss to pick up two close wins against both Arkansas and Tennessee but each came by the slimmest of margins. Matt Corral has carried the ball a ton the past two weeks, and he appeared to get banged up at the end of the Tennessee win. Meanwhile, the Ole Miss defense is beginning to show a bunch of cracks.
Orgeron is 7-1 ATS as a road dog at LSU with five wins. The Tigers lost some of the magic in Lexington but get it back this week with interim Coach O. LSU gets Ole Miss in a great spot after three emotional games following the bye.
Take the scores with the road dog.
Boston College (+5.5) @ Louisville
Following a bye week, Boston College dropped a dud at home against NC State with multiple turnovers in a four-possession loss. No Phil Jurkovec really changed things for the Eagles but this team can still make some noise in the Atlantic.
Following two tough losses to Wake Forest and Virginia, Louisville had a much-needed bye week and enters this game in a big spot. Scott Satterfield really cannot afford to fall below .500 in year three.
Louisville might have the worst defense in the ACC while Boston College is a well-rounded team. The Cardinals need a lot from quarterback Malik Cunningham due to an inefficient rushing attack. Meanwhile, Boston College might have the best offensive line in the ACC.
BC and Louisville are two similar teams, and the Eagles have performed well in this spot in recent seasons. Boston College is 14-4-1 ATS as a road dog since 2013.
That all adds up for a cover. Take the small road dog.
Tennessee @ Alabama Under 67
Despite a 4-3 record, Josh Heupel has Tennessee playing some good football. The Vols are scrappy on defense and getting excellent play from their front. On offense, Hendon Hooker has settled things as the Vols have one of the SEC’s top rushing attacks.
After a surprising road loss to Texas A&M, it was business as usual for Alabama in Starkvile after the Tide rolled all over Mississippi State. Nick Saban looks to have another division champion, and quarterback Bryce Young could be making a run at the Heisman.
Hooker left the game hurt against Ole Miss but will give it a go against Alabama. We’ll see how that plays out against a fast and physical defense.
Meanwhile, Alabama is also playing its eighth game in eight weeks. We could be in for some sloppiness on Saturday night.
Take the under as both defenses get just enough stops at Bryant-Denny Stadium.
Ohio State (-21) @ Indiana
Since the home loss to Oregon, the Buckeyes have begun to find their groove with consecutive wins over Rutgers and Maryland where Ohio State went over 50-plus. C.J. Stroud is playing at a high level behind center, and TreVeyon Henderson is beginning to emerge as one of the best tailbacks in college football as a true freshman. The Buckeyes have defensive issues but this is the best offense in college football.
Meanwhile, Indiana looks like a shell of itself from the last two seasons. Despite many of the same parts, the Hoosiers have the worst offense in the Big Ten and the defense has been unable to make up enough ground. IU could be headed to a 3-9 season.
The Big Ten’s best offense faces off against the Big Ten’s worst offense. It’s going to be a long night for Indiana on a lovely fall night in Bloomington. Ohio State scores early and often.
The Buckeyes are 7-1-1 ATS as a road favorite under Ryan Day and get another cover on Saturday.
Best Bet: Oklahoma State @ Iowa State (-7)
Mike Gundy has his 17th team at Oklahoma State standing at 6-0 and emerging as a real threat in the Big 12. However, the Pokes are doing it with defense this season. Oklahoma State defensive coordinator Jim Knowles is doing a great job in Stillwater, and the Cowboys rank 17th nationally in yards per play allowed.
After some tough losses to Iowa and Baylor, people stopped talking about Iowa State. Since then, the Cyclones have started to play some good football and this veteran-heavy team has a top-20 yards per play offense and defense. Not many teams can say that.
The Cowboys are 4-0 in one-possession games this year and needed some bounces to beat both Boise State and Texas on the road. However, Iowa State is the most complete team they’ve played to this point. Campbell’s team is in a must-win spot if the Cyclones are going to climb back into the Big 12 race.
Iowa State issues a statement, and Oklahoma State is unable to keep things close. Cyclones win by two-plus scores.
Lay the touchdown with the home favorite.
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