After an extremely brief stint in the red (one week to be exact), we are officially back in the green. Closing out week 9 with a 3-1 record netting us just over 2 units. We expect to keep the good times rolling into week 10 with some eye popping matchups on the schedule. The first CFB Playoff rankings have been released, and we have officially entered the home stretch. With just four weeks between now and conference championships/bowl season it’s time to sharpen up and separate the winners (us) from the losers (every other sports betting site). The smell of fall is in the air, along with the sweet smell of another batch of winners from MJQ headquarters.
DPJ’s Best Bets (After Week 9: 14-12 Overall, +0.75 Units Total)
Tennessee @ Georgia – Saturday, 11/5 (3:30 PM EST)
Pick: Tennessee +8.5 (-110) (1 unit)
If you’ve been following along this year there should be no doubt in your mind that I was going to pick Tennessee this week. This Vols team feels special, and I’m gonna ride with them until the wheels fall off. Hendon Hooker is now the leader in the clubhouse to win the Heisman with his odds currently sitting at +100. The job isn’t done yet but I handed out Hendon for Heisman at +6600 back in early September, and I would really like to take that victory lap here in a couple months. This matchup with UGA is what we think it is. The Vols have arguably the best offense on paper, and the Bulldogs have arguably the best defense on paper. However I think this game purely hinges on Tennessee’s ability to slow down UGA’s passing game. If they can do that they have a great chance to win. But either way I love the 8.5 points and think they will hang around the whole game, or worse case scenario will have a chance at a back door cover. This is a legacy game for Hendon…not only is the Heisman on the line but it’s another chance to raise his draft stock and lock the Vols in for a spot in the CFB Playoff. Score Prediction: Tennessee 32 – Georgia 30.
Texas Tech @ TCU/UCLA @ Arizona State
Pick: 6 Point Teaser: TCU -3, UCLA -4 (-110) (1 unit)
Both of these teams have been red hot against the spread all year and I am bummed that it has taken me this long to get on the wagon. Better late than never should be a fitting phrase here, as there is surely some winning juice left in the tank for both of these programs.
TCU got another big win on the road in Morgantown last week, and with four games left they have a real shot at going undefeated which could throw a big wrench in the CFB Playoff picture.. First they must take care of business at home against Texas Tech this week, and this Red Raider team looks incredibly on-brand. TTU as usual can throw the ball as well as anyone, but they can’t run the ball and play defense. That is certainly going to be a problem against the Horned Frogs who have been running and passing on everyone (5th in total yards, 25th in pass yards, 23rd in rush yards). This one will most likely be a track meet from start to finish (total is damn near 70 points) but I expect TCU to be up multiple scores in the fourth quarter. They’re 6-1-1 against the spread in 2022 which is pretty incredible. Score prediction: TCU 42 – TTU 30.
UCLA hits the road this week as they head across the desert to Tempe to take on a struggling ASU team. ASU doesn’t really do anything well, their offense stinks and their defense is horrendous. They stole a win at home against Washington back in early October which is probably the only reason this spread isn’t 20+ points. UCLA needs to stack a few more wins before a huge showdown with USC on Nov 19th in the battle for LA. The Pac 12 has gone away from divisions and will instead be the two teams with the best conference records, so UCLA can’t afford to lose another game. Charbonnet should have no problem running all over these Sun Devils (the guy is averaging an absurd 7.5 YPC right now) and the Bruins will control this one from start to finish. Score Prediction: UCLA 33 – ASU 17.
Arizona @ Utah – Saturday, 11/5 (7:30 PM EST)
Pick: Arizona +18 (-110) (1 unit)
Don’t look now but my Arizona Wildcats are 5th in the nation in passing yards per game (340 ypg to be exact) as transfer Jayden De Laura has breathed some much needed life back into this crumbling program. I will start by saying this is not at all a homer pick (well, it probably is a little bit) but I have been as bearish as anyone about this Zona team for several years now. Ever since Rich Rod was me-too’d and subsequently fired the program has been in the gutter. They’re only 3-5 on the year in 2022 but they’re 5-3 ATS and have covered three of their last four. Utah is a tough place to play but 18 points is a big number to work with for the Wildcats. That has back door cover written all over it, but ideally we see Zona hang around for at least three quarters. Score Prediction: Arizona 28 – Utah 38.
Alabama @ LSU – Saturday, 11/5 (7:00 PM EST)
Pick: LSU +13.5 (-110) (1 unit)
Every dumb bone in my body is telling me to hammer LSU this week. Brian Kelly is doing what he does best, being a ruthless asshole while winning football games. It’s what he did at Notre Dame and it is what he is going to do at LSU. I hate him but he is a damn good coach, unfortunately. With that being said this line being 13.5 scares the crap out of me. No matter how hard I try I can’t figure out why a seemingly weak Bama team is favored by two TDs on the road in Baton Rouge so I am checking my ego at the door and trimming my unit amount in half. Maybe this is a game where Vegas sees only two possible outcomes, an LSU victory or a Bama blowout with not much in between…it just seems bizarre. I think LSU has plenty of offensive firepower to score on a vulnerable Bama defense and they can easily cover this 13.5. Score prediction: Alabama 30 – LSU 27.
Q’s Best Bets (After Week 9: 9-9 Overall, +0.802 Units Total)
Tennessee @ Georgia/Texas @ Kansas State
Pick: 2 Team Parlay: Tennessee +17.5, Texas Moneyline (+135) (1 unit)
Hendon Hooker and the Vols head to Athens this weekend for the biggest SEC matchup of the year up to this point. This game will be the definition of “good on good” as we’ll get to see one of the best offenses in the country face off against one of the stingiest defenses in all the land. While I’m not as high on Tennessee as Jake, (got to give it to the guy… calling Hendon Hooker for heisman this offseason was some SHARP action) I do think that this season has a magical vibe for Rocky Top right now so it’s hard not to ride the hot hand to at least keep this one close. Florida exposed some of the Georgia defense’s weaknesses in regard to uptempo passing games last week (Anthony Richardson threw for over 270 yards) and let’s be real here… Georgia’s schedule has been cake this year so far (the Oregon team they blew out in Nix’s first start week 1 is NOT the Ducks squad we see today). It sounds like Georgia plans to run man coverage against Hyatt and Tillman with a spy monitoring Hooker in the pocket all night. That feels like a bold move given the explosive plays both of those WRs are capable of making but I’m not sure how else you can defend a wildly balanced offense like that and Georgia does tout two of the best cornerbacks in the country. It’s truly two freight trains on a collision course which should result in some big plays on both sides of the ball. The real question will be whether or not Tennessee’s defense can keep Stetson Bennett in check or not. The Vols have been giving up large chunk plays all season but their pass rush is pretty solid and they’ve been stingy in the red zone. I think ultimately Georgia pulls off a nail biter at home but it feels foolish not to trust Hooker to keep the Heisman campaign alive and at least keep this one within 17 points. Score Prediction: Georgia 31 – Tennessee 27.
Am I completely insane for backing the Longhorns again after they blew a massive lead in embarrassing fashion only two weeks ago to Oklahoma State? Possibly. Is Texas back? I don’t think I’ll ever utter that saying again. So what’s the deal here?
The line in this game is a massive overreaction in both directions, plain and simple. Kansas State may have shut out Oklahoma State 48-0 last week but the Pokes were a victim of timing there more than anything and this is a Kansas State team that got throttled by TCU and upset by Tulane earlier this year. Oklahoma State was aggressively banged up heading into that game and it was honestly going to be a matchup nightmare either way. The fact that the spread on Texas right now is only -2.5 is both an overreaction to Kansas State’s win last week as well as an overreaction to the Texas meltdown against that same Oklahoma State team two weeks ago. Quinn Ewers got the yips in that game, no doubt about it. Does that mean that the first year signal caller isn’t still an elite talent? Absolutely not… the mullet man is still an absolute gunslinger. Ewers aside, this game should actually come down to the run game for both teams. Bijan Robinson is an absolute workhorse and he’s pieced together a highlight reel year thus far. He’ll be facing a very average Wildcat run defense and Ewers will still have his deep threat option in Xavier Worthy any given down. The Longhorns are also coming off of a bye so they should be much healthier/well rested compared to that Oklahoma State game. In contrast to Texas’ options offensively, Kansas State runs the ball virtually exclusively. Deuce Vaughn has had a solid year but he’ll be facing a decent Texas defensive front that should be able to relatively keep him in check most of the game. So main takeaways here: 1) Texas wins the comparison of RBs vs run defenses in this game 2) Texas is way more balanced on offense 3) Texas has the ability to score/move the ball faster than Kansas State 4) Texas is healthy coming off the bye week and hungry for a get right game after blowing a multiple score lead against Oklahoma State two weeks ago. Banking on a bounce back game for Ewers and the Longhorns this week. Score Prediction: Texas 31 – Kansas State 24.
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