Sometimes, you do it all correct, and something weird happens that blows it all up. Case in point, Thursday’s Virginia Tech-NC State game. Through the first half, neither team did a thing with the football. The score was a mere 3-0, and it appeared that might be enough.
Yeah…not quite. Somehow, Virginia Tech put up three touchdowns in the third quarter, and what should have been an easy under turned into a loss. Throw in the Maple Leafs managing to get beat in San Jose, and it proved a bad night all around.
So we get back after it today. Here are my best bets for October 28.
EAST CAROLINA +3.5, -120
The Pirates might not be able to defend the pass well, but BYU can’t really stop their ground game either. This should be a high-scoring battle, and I expect ECU to do its part of the scoring. This might be one where whoever has the football last wins the game.
LOUISIANA TECH -6, -110
The Bulldogs have put up some gaudy pass numbers, and Florida International cannot stop the pass at all. The Louisiana Tech run defense is as bad as it gets, but the Golden Panthers don’t really run much anyway. Throw in that FIU has played better on the road than at home, and the Bulldogs make sense here.
COLUMBIA +4, -110
The Lions’ run defense is going to lead them to a win eventually, and I think it might come here. Columbia owns the best run defense in FCS and only gives up 56 yards per game on the ground, and as we get into football weather, that makes the Lions dangerous. I think they catch Yale asleep here.
DUCKS TTU 2.5, -105
The Ducks have scored two or less on five occasions, and Vegas has played excellent defense all season long. The over/under of 6.5 is tempting, but I’d rather take Anaheim’s blue line out of the equation. John Gibson will get things solved eventually, but not with this defense in front of him. I think backing the Vegas defense — which hasn’t given up more than two at home yet — is the better move.
COYOTES ML FIRST PERIOD, +115
The last time Winnipeg came off a back-to-back, the Jets’ dead legs were evident in the first 20 minutes. Vegas obliterated them 4-0 in the first period after the Peggers had beaten Colorado the night before, and Arizona just needs to lead after one to cash this. This is also the home opener for the Coyotes in their new tiny building, which often leads to good things for the host.