Top College Football Highlight Trio of Week 9 ATS Picks

Posted by Eric Williams on Monday,October 24, 2016 5:20, EDT in

A pair of ACC teams and one unbeaten national championship hopeful highlight my trio of Week 9 ATS picks. With kickoff times for all three matchups quickly approaching, let’s get down to business.

Top College Football Highlight Trio of Week 9 ATS Picks

 

 

Duke at Georgia Tech

When: 12:00 PM ET, Saturday, October 29, 2016
Where: Bobby Dodd Stadium, Atlanta, Georgia
TV: ACC Network
Odds: Georgia Tech -7

Analysis: The Duke Blue Devils (3-4 SU, 4-3 ATS) and Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (4-3 SU, 3-3 ATS) have both been wildly inconsistent this season. Duke fought its heart out, but ended up on the wrong side of a 24-14 loss against Lamar Jackson and Louisville two weeks ago. Quarterback Daniel Jones was an efficient 14 for 21 for 129 yards and two TD passes in the loss while the Blue Devils’ defense eventually succumbed to Jackson’s feat as they gave up 181 passing yards and 144 rushing yards to the almost sure-fire Heisman winner.

Georgia Tech snapped a three-game skid by beating FCS program Georgia Southern 35-24 two weeks ago, but they didn’t look very impressive no matter how you look at it. Quarterback Justin Thomas was the difference-maker in the matchup of spread-option offenses as he rushed for two scores while completing 7 of 11 passes for 102 yards and one touchdown.

Simply put, with both team allowing an identical 21.8 points per game defensively and the Yellow Jackets only outscoring their ACC rivals by an average of 3.7 points per game, the easy ATS pick for this matchup is to back Duke. The Blue Devils have won two straight in this series and have limited two of their last three opponents to 20 points or less.

Georgia Tech has given up at least 35 points in two of their last three games and at least 24 points in four straight. Duke is 6-3 ATS in its last 9 games and 3-2-1 ATS in their last six games against the yellow Jackets. Keep it simple and back Duke for the ATS win at the very least!

Pick: Duke +7 Points

Boston College at North Carolina State

When: 12:30 PM ET, Saturday, October 29, 2016
Where: Carter Finley Stadium, Raleigh, North Carolina
TV: ACC Network
Odds: NC State -15

Analysis: NC State (4-3 SU, 5-2 ATS) let me down in a big way on Saturday by getting blown out by Louisville 54-13 just one week after giving No. 3 Clemson a very tough way to go. Still, I like the Wolfpack to get past a Boston College (3-4 SU, 3-4 ATS) team that has dropped two straight and three of its last five including Saturday’s 28-20 loss against mediocre Syracuse.

Boston College allowed Syracuse signal-caller Eric Dungey to pass for a whopping 434 yards and toss three TD passes in their most recent loss and have only managed to beat overmatched Buffalo and Wagner in their last five games. NC State let Lamar Jackson have his way with their defense this past weekend, but Jackson has done that to just about everyone this season, so I guess there’s no shame in that!

More importantly, Boston College is just 1-4 ATS in its last five games while NC State has posted a polar-opposite 4-1 ATS mark over in its last five games. These longtime CC rivals have split the last four meetings evenly, but NC State won last season 24-8 despite being on the rod and I like this season’s meeting to end up in a similar fashion.

Pick: NC State -15 Points

 

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No. 8 Baylor at Texas

When: 3:30 PM ET, Saturday, October 29, 2016
Where: Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium, Austin, Texas
TV: ABC
Odds: Baylor -3

Analysis: The eighth-ranked Baylor Bears (6-0 SU, 2-4 ATS) remained unbeaten by pounding the snot out of the Kansas Jayhawks in their 49-7 Week 8 rout and now I believe they’re poised to do the same to the inconsistent Texas Longhorns and put head coach Charlie Strong one more step toward being out the door. Underrated quarterback Seth Russell tossed two touchdowns and ran for two more in the first half while defensive back Ryan Reid returned the first of his two interceptions for a score in a game that was over by halftime.

Texas has lost four of its last five games and looked as dysfunctional as ever in their 21-7 Week 8 loss against Kansas State on Saturday as they allowed Wildcats quarterback Jesse Ertz to toss two TD passes and run for another while converting just 3 of 11 third down attempts and getting outplayed despite winning the turnover battle 3-0. Baylor is 5-1 ATS in their last six road dates against Texas and will be looking for some serious payback after getting upset by the Longhorns at home last season 23-17. Simply put, I believe the Bears get their payback and then some despite Texas’ near-perfect 7-1 ATS mark in its last eight home games.

Pick: Baylor -3 Points