College Football Bowl Picks: News, Odds and Picks from Dec. 31 to Jan.1
by Doug Upstone Scores & Statson
We are down to the nitty-gritty of this year's bowl season. The remaining games have some fascinating storylines like the Rose Bowl and according to the sportsbooks totals, there is set to be some real defensive struggles.
So grab chips, order up the food and make sure the refrigerator is stocked with the beverage of choice. It's a given the wagers made are in a for a wild ride.
Here are the previews and all odds are courtesy of Intertops.
Betting odds: Cincinnati -6, Virginia Tech +6, Total:53.5
College Football Free Pick: Cincinnati is the better team in this matchup, but we have a trend that is tough to ignore. Teams that were 5-6 and had to win last contest to become bowl eligible are 42-21 ATS once they made the game. Virginia Tech is 3-0 ATS this decade playing in a bowl with a 6-6 record.
College Football Free Pick: Each of these teams has one-dimensional attacks, Pittsburgh the running team and Stanford the throwing club. Each defense has definite flaws. With Pitt playing in the tougher conference, we will take the points and believe they could win this game.
Betting odds: Oregon -2.5, Michigan State +2.5, Total:48
College Football Free Pick: Michigan State has a better defense, but also has an unproductive offense. Oregon can score and move the chains but are they tough enough to win in the trenches on both sides of the ball? We will say "no" and Sparty wins the game.
Betting odds: Missouri -9, Oklahoma State +9, Total:74
College Football Free Pick: This is a larger spread than what we would prefer, but we understand why sportsbooks have it this high based on how the teams closed the season. Just a feeling Oklahoma State keeps scoring enough to make this a seven-point outcome.
College Football Free Pick: All indicators are Northwestern is not as good as their 8-5 record. Nonetheless, the Wildcats hang around and are 6-0 ATS after being outgained by 125 or more total yards in their last game.
Betting odds: Texas A&M -7, N.C. State +7, Total: 56
College Football Free Pick: N.C State has the No.6 passing game in the country, yet struggles to run, making them one dimensional. Texas A&M has a better-balanced offense, plays better defense and faced a tougher schedule, making them the play.
Betting odds: Mississippi State -7, Iowa +7, Total: 42.5
College Football Free Pick: The first game of the new year features two excellent defensive clubs, who do a great job in limiting points. Mississippi State is 9-3 UNDER this year and 11-2 UNDER after two straight wins by 17 or more points.
College Football Free Pick: Two underrated defenses and two teams that know how to run the ball. The difference in the game is at quarterback, where Trace McSorley has a decisive edge and that is why the Nittany Lions will cover.
College Football Free Pick: It has been a great run for Central Florida, but with the 118th ranked run defense, coupled with not having QB McKenzie Milton, LSU has too much size and speed for the Knights. The Bengal Tigers by 10.
College Football Free Pick: We all know about Urban Meyer leaving and supposedly the players want to win the Rose Bowl for the coach. However, Washington will have a say in how this plays out. With Ohio State's offense back at full throttle, the Huskies will not be able to match points. Buckeyes win 35-26.
College Football Free Pick: The Sugar Bowl is about Georgia's frame of mind. Are they still thinking about giving away another lead to Alabama or have they moved on and play Bulldogs football? With this big a spread, probably somewhere in between and Texas coach Tom Herman is 12-2 ATS as an underdog. Texas covers.