Week 3 of the college football season was a bit of a snoozefest for ranked teams, but if you followed our picks on MJQ you ended up ~1 unit which is commendable. Luckily we are now fully into conference play and there should be some fireworks. We have some big games with single-digit lines so there’s a decent chance we get some upsets this week. Georgia, Bama and *seemingly* Ohio State appear to be the juggernauts, with Clemson, Michigan and Oklahoma not far behind. We’ve cooked up another batch of winners this week after a promising week 3. You can rest assured that we will keep that positive momentum rolling for the remainder of the season.
DPJ’s Best Bets (After Week 3: 5-4 Overall, +0.47 Units Total)
Florida @ Tennessee – Saturday, 9/24 (3:30 PM EST)
Pick: Florida +11 (-110) (1 unit)
This pick hurts my soul as I really love this Tennessee team and I’m still holding out hope that Hendon Hooker stays in the Heisman race. However, this line is simply too high for what I think will be a tough fought win for either side. Florida has had a weird season, and they’re lucky to even be 2-1 after a close one against USF in the Swamp last week. Anthony Richardson has yet to break out this year and I am thinking there is no better time than this huge matchup with rival Tennessee. Florida comes with a pretty solid passing defense (allowing 178 ypg) which I think will be the key to slowing down the Vols up tempo offense. If Florida’s defense shows up and keeps them in this game I see no reason why they can’t cover 11 and potentially even win this one outright. Either way, I’ll be rooting for a dog fight. And hey, maybe a game winning TD drive in the last two minutes for Hendon Hooker cashes this Florida bet while improving his Heisman situation. Score Prediction: Florida 27 – Tennessee 31
Stanford @ Washington – Saturday, 9/24 (10:30 PM EST)
Pick: Total Points Over 64 (-110) (1 unit)
To me, this game has shootout written all over it. The Huskies are coming off a big win for the program last week at home against Sparty Nation. After a game like that, I could see the defense and the team in general getting comfortable all week in practice preparing for what might be a fairly mediocre Stanford squad. The thing about Stanford is they can absolutely move the football. They’re in the top 60 for total yards, passing yards and points (Wash is top 15 in those three, and #3 in passing yards). You might be thinking top 60 isn’t that impressive but the mighty Oregon Ducks are 68th in pass yards, and the great offensive guru Steve Sarkasian has the Longhorns at 125th. Top 60 is pretty good! The problem for Stanford is their defense is swiss cheese, they couldn’t hold a candle to USC’s offense a couple weeks ago before their bye week. I’m expecting this one to have points early and often. It could have the type of game that covers the 64 points after 3Q if things break right. Score Prediction: Washington 45 – Stanford 38
Southern Cal @ Oregon State – Saturday, 9/24 (9:30 PM EST)
Pick: USC -6 (-110) (1 unit)
This line is so low that I simply can’t resist. Yes, I know it’s a straight rat poison vegas line but I think this is USC’s chance to really prove they are here to stay, and a possible CFB playoff team, if they can win from start to finish at Oregon State. I know that OSU (the Corvallis OSU, not Columbus or Stillwater OSU) is not some powerhouse program but that is an underrated/tough place to play and this team has looked rock solid through 3 weeks. USC’s offense looked unstoppable at Stanford and again last week at home for Fresno State. The Trojans may have found a guy here in Lincoln Riley, it’s pretty impressive what can happen when your team isn’t coached by an incompetent ass hat like Clay Helton. I know Lincoln is dialed in and wants to prove himself in year one at SC, so we are gonna ride the Trojans this week for a full unit. Score Prediction: USC 41 – Oregon State 34
Q’s Best Bets (After Week 3: 3-4 Overall, -0.61 Units Total)
Clemson @ Wake Forest – Saturday, 9/24 (12:00 PM EST)
Pick: Total Points Over 54.5 (-115) (1 unit)
First major test of the year for Clemson this week as they roll into Winston Salem to face a Demon Deacons squad looking to continue building off their momentum from last season (2021 was the first time they’ve played in an ACC Championship since the Bush administration). This one has the makings of a shoot out and given the line movement over the last few days (line has moved ~4 points in Wake’s favor down to +7/7.5 points) I’m erring on the side of caution and going with the points total here. People love to fade Clemson’s offense right now since we don’t have a Deshaun Watson/Trevor Lawrence type under center currently but the Tigers have actually been quietly putting up points since the back half of last season. In fact, both Wake and Clemson are both averaging close to 42 points per game this season thus far and it’s worth mentioning that Sam Hartman didn’t even play in the Demon Deacons opener. Wake Forest currently has one of the best pass rush defenses in the country and Clemson has struggled in pass protection early. Conversely, Wake Forest has one of the worst run offenses in all the land and Clemson’s stout defensive front absolutely consumes running backs. This leads me to believe that Clemson will lean on the run game for the majority of the game and Wake is going to let Hartman sling the pigskin early and often against a Tigers’ secondary that has looked suspect up to this point. I’ll likely add a prop parlay focusing on a Will Shipley TD and/or Sam Hartman interceptions and/or Wake Forest sacks if I can find one. As of now, nothing super juicy in that regard on the market. Score Prediction: Clemson 31 – Wake Forest 27.
Southern Cal @ Oregon State/Kansas State @ Oklahoma
Pick: 2 Team Parlay: USC Moneyline, Oklahoma -6.5 (+110) (1 unit)
If this parlay looks similar to last week’s… that’s because it is. I think Lincoln Riley and Caleb Williams have the USC offense humming so far and I don’t see that trend changing in Corvallis this weekend. I’m definitely predicting quite a few points to be scored between both sides but with the total sitting around 70.5 currently I’m not seeing much value there. Oregon State has struggled to cause much mayhem in offensive backfields so far this season and Caleb Williams is too good to fade when he has time to operate. I think Oregon State keeps it close at home since they do have such a solid run game and both teams have fantastic turnover ratios but I’m siding with the better team to come out on top here. Worst case scenario, this game becomes a shootout that results in a Trojans one score victory. Best case scenario, Caleb Williams/Lincoln Riley continue to put the country on notice concerning this high octane offense and the Trojans run away with it in the second half. Score Prediction: USC 38 – Oregon State 31.
Not only does Oklahoma’s offense look electric between former UCF QB Dillon Gabriel and RB Eric Gray (who is running behind one of the better offensive line units in the country right now) but Venables also has the Sooners defense looking better than it has in a long time in just his very first year as head coach. Makes sense considering he’s been by far the best defensive coordinator in college football for over a decade before taking the HC job in Norman this year. This will be one of the better defenses that Dillon Gabriel has faced this season but it’s really just Kansas State’s secondary that’s stingy… *Eric Gray enters the chat*. Kansas State really hasn’t looked good at all so far this season on either side of the ball and I don’t see that trend changing in an away game against a team with realistic playoff aspirations. Expect Oklahoma to use a relatively balanced offensive scheme that could lean heavier on the run depending on how Gabriel fares against the Wildcats secondary. Taking Oklahoma to win by a TD in this one but wouldn’t be surprised if it gets out of hand late. Score Prediction: Oklahoma 31 – Kansas State 17.
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