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9/3/09-9/7/09


FEATURE PICKS ARCHIVES
Week 1: 9/3-9/7
Week 2: 9/10-9/12
Week 3: 9/17-9/19
Week 4: 9/24-9/26
Week 5: 9/30-10/3
Week 6: 10/6-10/10
Week 7: 10/13-10/17
Week 8: 10/21-10/24
Week 9: 10/27-11/1
Week 10: 11/3-11/8
Week 11: 11/10-11/15
Week 12: 11/18-11/21
Week 13: 11/24-11/28
Week 14: 12/3-12/5
Week 15: 12/12-12/12
Week 16: Bowls
Past Season Archives: 2007 | 2008 | 2009 |

EASY PICKINS:
The computer likes the favorite with room to spare.
2009 Regular Season: 5-3 SU (.625), 3-5 ATS (.375)
This Week: 5-3 SU (.625), 3-5 ATS (.375)

Thursday, September 3
Troy (-3) by 5.03 over BOWLING GREEN - Troy has won or shared the last three Sun Belt titles. This season's team may be the best that Troy has fielded since moving up to the FBS level in 2001. The Trojans' last visit to the Buckeye State almost produced an upset over the Buckeyes themselves last September. The Dave Clawson era begins at BGSU while Troy begins its' 19th season under Larry Blakeney.
Bowling Green won 31-14. The computer lost SU, lost ATS.

Friday, September 4
Tulsa (-14) by 25.22 over TULANE - The computer likes the Golden Hurricane by 11+ points more than the oddsmakers. Gone are record-setting QB David Johnson (7th round NFL Draft, Pittsburgh), career rushing leader Tarrion Adams (3,651 yards), and co-offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn (hired by Auburn). Together, they helped the Golden Hurricane average a nation's-best 569.86 yards per game, and score an average of 47.21 points. But what's to worry about? Tulane has lost all 4 CUSA games to Tulsa by at least 24 points.
Tulsa won 37-13. The computer won SU, won ATS.

Saturday, September 5
EASTERN MICHIGAN (-4.5) by 16.94 over Army - Ron English debuts as head coach for EMU. Rich Ellerson has his debut with Army. Both teams are coming off 3-9 seasons. I don't have enough enthusiasm for EMU to agree with the computer's 17-point margin, but returning experience weighs heavily in the Eagles' favor and home field advantage doesn't hurt.
Army won 27-14. The computer lost SU, lost ATS.

Kentucky (-10) by 17.14 over Miami, Ohio at Cincinnati - All the major preseason publications have both of these teams at or near the bottom of their respective divisions, but 10 points proved to be a weak opening line set by the oddsmakers. The Red Hawks lost last year's season opener at home to Vanderbilt by 21 points. This game will be the head coaching debut for Miami's Michael Haywood.
Kentucky won 42-0. Computer won SU, won ATS.

TEXAS (-36) by 39.28 over Louisiana-Monroe - Texas is opening at home against a Sun Belt team for the 6th straight season. The Longhorns won four of the previous five matchups with SBC teams by at least 42 points.
Texas won 59-20. The compute won SU, won ATS.

Lsu (-14) by 24.41 over WASHINGTON - After a down year, LSU is expected to be back in the mix for the SEC West title. The Huskies are coming off a disastrous 0-12 season and haven't posted a winning season since 2002. New head coach Steve Sarkisian inherits a Washington team that was outscored 463-159 last year.
LSU won 31-23. The computer won SU, lost ATS.

Minnesota (-6) by 14.96 over SYRACUSE - Doug Marrone is the new head coach at Syracuse which has just two home wins over FBS teams in the last two seasons combined. Minnesota's Tim Brewster was 1-11 in his debut campaign in 2007, but improved to 7-6 last year. However, the Golden Gophers begin the season on a 5-game losing streak.
Minnesota won 23-20 in OT. The computer won SU, lost ATS.

Monday, September 7
FLORIDA STATE (-4) by 8.97 over Miami, Fla. - FSU has won three of the last four meetings, but all of the victories were by 3 points or less. This year, the 'Noles enter the season as prohibitive divisional favorites in the ACC Atlantic while Miami is a consensus 4th-place pick in the Coastal division.
Miami won 38-34. The computter lost SU, lost ATS.



HOLD YOUR HORSES:
The computer likes the favorite, but by fewer points than the oddsmakers.
2009 Regular Season: 5-1 SU (.833), 1-5 ATS (.167)
This Week: 5-1 SU (.833), 1-5 ATS (.167)

Saturday, September 5
Alabama (-4) by 0.10 over Virginia Tech at Atlanta - Defense is the strong suit of both teams and Virginia Tech's biggest concern should be that 'Bama returns 9 starters on that side of the ball. The computer has hit 65.6% ATS with the Hokies since 2001.
Alabama won 34-24. The computer won SU, lost ATS.

CLEMSON (-21) by 9.10 over Middle Tennessee - MTSU hasn't lost a game by more than 19 points since the 2007 season finale against Troy. Rick Stockstill's Blue Raiders beat Maryland last year.
Clemson won 37-14. The computer won Su, lost ATS.

MICHIGAN (-11) by 0.41 over Western Michigan- The teams last met in '02 and '03 and Michigan won each of those contests by at least 17. The Broncos return Tim Hiller at QB (8,080 yards, 76 TD's, 28 INT's) and he'll be throwing against a defense that lost 7 starters.
Michigan won 31-7. The computer won SU, lost ATS.

PURDUE (-13) by 2.29 over Toledo - Purdue begins the Danny Hope era with no returning starters at the skill positions. Toledo returns almost everyone to give Tim Beckman a lot to work with in his first season at the helm.
Purdue won 52-31. The computer won SU, lost ATS.

Sunday, September 6
COLORADO (-13) by 7.41 over Colorado State - Before last season's 21-point win by Colorado there was a 6-year streak where this rivalry game was decided by 7 points or less.
Colorado State won 23-17. The computer lost SU, won ATS.

Mississippi (-17) by 6.76 over MEMPHIS - Ole Miss is 2-1 in its last three games at Memphis, and both wins were decided by 4 points or less.
Mississippi won 45-14. The computer won SU, lost ATS.



UPSETS:
The computer likes the underdog as the outright winner. I don't select the games in this category. Instead, we list every upset projected by the computer.
2009 Regular Season: 3-2 SU (.600), 3-2 ATS (.600)
This Week: 3-2 SU (.600), 3-2 ATS (.600)

Thursday, September 3
South Carolina by 0.16 over N.C. STATE (-3.5) - South Carolina won last year's opener 34-0 in Columbia. That was the first meeting between the two teams since 1999 and just the second since the Gamecocks joined the SEC in 1992.
South Carolina won 7-3. The computer won SU, won ATS.

Saturday, September 5
Buffalo by 0.36 over UTEP (-4.5) - Buffalo won 42-17 at home last year. The Bulls went on to finish 8-6 and win the MAC title while the Miners stumbled to 5-7 and missed the bowl season for the 3rd straight year. Buffalo announced August 25 that RB James Starks, the school's career rushing leader, would miss all of his senior season with a labral tear in his shoulder. The computer was 7-5 ATS with UTEP last season, and 8-4 with Buffalo.
Buffalo won 23-17. The computer won SU, won ATS.

Missouri by 5.70 over Illinois (-5.5) at St. Louis - Missouri has won 4 straight in the series, and 5 of the last 6. The Tigers have to overcome the losses of QB Chase Daniel, WR Jeremy Maclin and TE Chase Coffman.
Missouri won 37-9. The computer won SU, won ATS.

New Mexico by 0.14 over Texas A&M (-11) - I don't agree with this, but I include all of the computer's upset picks. It had the Lobos picked by 9.38 last year and UNM lost by 6. This is the debut game for New Mexico head coach Mike Locksley.
Texas A&M won 41-6. The computer lost SU, lost ATS.

Rice by 6.23 over UAB (-4.5) - The teams haven't met since 2006 when the Owls prevailed 34-33 at home. Record-setting QB-WR combination of Chase Clement and Jarett Dillard (51 TD's by the duo) is gone from Rice's lineup.
UAB won 44-24. The computer lost SU, lost ATS.



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