Recent Hot Run: From Mid April 2009 to January 23, 2010:
39 Week Run of +210.70 Units
150-79-3 Top Daily Play Run, Including 28-4-1
11-5 in 5* Plays...NY Giants (+3) Delivers in Super Bowl (2012) 14-4-1 in NFL 4*s Since September 2007 37-20-2 in 4*s, including 14-4-1 tear After Green Bay (-2') in Super Bowl! 22-8-1 in 3.5*s since October 2009
Our Super Bowl History (Few Have Done It Better): 11-3-1 2012 NY Giants (+3) for 5 Units Win 2011 Packers (-2') for 4 Units Win 2010 Saints (+5') for 4 Units Win 2009 Cardinals (+7) 23-27 for 5 Units Win 2008 Giants (+14) 17-14 for 5 Units Win 2007 Bears (+7) 17-29 for 5 UnitsLoss 2006 Seahawks (+4) 10-21 for 4 Units Loss 2005 Eagles (+7) 21-24 for 4 UnitsWin 2004 Panthers (+7) 29-32 for 3 Units Win 2003 Bucs (+4) 48-21 for 5 Units Win 2002 Rams (-14) 17-20 for 4 Units Loss 2001 Ravens (-3) 34-7 for 5 Units Win 2000 Titans (+7) 16-23 for 4 Units Push 1999 Broncos (-7') 34-19 for 4 Units Win 1998 Broncos (+11) 31-24 for 5 Units Win
The Duke's Sports Archives
37-20-2 in 4*s Since September 2007 02/06/11: Green Bay (-2') Winner 2011 NCAA Tournament: 12/19/10: Tennessee (-1) Winner Blistering 18-8! 10/16/10:: *UAB (-2') Winner 10/09/10: S.Miss (-8) Loser 09/19/10: Redskins (+3) Push 09/18/10: Utah State (+3') Loser 09/02/10: Marshall Under (47) Loser 06/17/10: Boston (+7) Winner 06/08/10: LA Lakers Under (193) Winner 04/17/10: Milwaukee (+8') Loser 04/03/10: Duke (-2) Winner 02/07/10: Saints (+5') Outright Winner 12/13/09: Colts (-6') Winner 12/05/09: Alabama (+5') Outright Winner 11/14/09: Notre Dame (+6') Winner 11/07/09: Kansas State (+2') Winner 11/01/09: Carolina Over (41) Winner 06/07/09: Orlando (+6') Winner 05/24/09: Orlando (-1') Winner 03/21/09: UCLA Under (146) Loser 01/19/09: Eagles Under (47) Loser 01/10/09: Baltimore (+3) Winner 01/10/09: Georgia (+9) Push 12/31/08: G Tech (-4) Loser 11/01/08: U Conn (+3') Loser 10/18/08: GA Tech (-2') Winner 09/06/08: Washington (+9) Winner 08/30/08: East Carolina (-9') Outright Winner 08/18/08: Baltimore (+110) Loser 04/29/08: Dallas Over (194) Loser 04/15/08: St. Louis Cardinals (-123) Winner 04/07/08: Kansas (+2) Winner 04/05/08: UCLA (+2') Loser 03/28/08: Texas (-2) Winner 03/27/08: Xavier (+1) Winner 03/20/08: Arizona (+2) Loser 03/01/08: Drake (-11) Loser 02/23/08: Kent State (+9) Outright Winner 02/09/08: San Diego State (-1) Loser 01/30/08: Creighton (+5) Loser 01/06/08: Tampa Bay (-3) Loser 12/23/07: Philadelphia (+3) Winner 12/16/07: Tampa Bay (-12') Winner 12/01/07: Oregon State (-1) Winner 11/18/07: Baltimore (+2') Loser 11/17/07: Cincinnati (+6) Winner 11/10/07: Iowa (-14') Loser 11/03/07: Stanford (+3) Loser 10/28/07: Philadelphia Eagles (-1) Winner 10/27/07: Georgia (+9) Winner 10/21/07: New York Jets Over (47') Winner 10/13/07: New Mexico (+4) Winner 10/07/07: Green Bay (-3) Loser 09/29/07: Virginia (-6) Winner 09/22/07: South Carolina (+18)Winner 09/16/07: Green Bay (+2')Winner 09/09/07: Houston Texans (-3)Winner 09/01/07: Wisconsin (-14)Winner
( *) 4.5* Play
12-7-1 (+6.65 Units) Run NFL: 59-38-3 (+41.25) Units
13-2 MNF This Season!
2011 NCAA Football: 64-52-4 Season
NCAA National Championship:
*Best Bet* LSU (+2') for 3.5 Units ***" Loss Alabama/LSU 8:30: At first glance, Alabama is the call. Going back to the first matchup on 11/5/2011, they drove the ball on LSU but made mistakes to keep points off the board. But the fact of the matter is that they did make mistakes in critical moments of the game to lose. LSU showed poise and it can be said that the Tigers shine when the spotlight is brightest while Alabama is not yet ready for prime time.
LSU has a tendency to start sluggishly, as they did in the first meeting and against Arkansas and Georgia; however, because of their superior depth on both sides of the football, they are able to wear down opponents over the course of a game. Their backfield is extremely deep and add Hilliard to the mix -- of their two 700+ yard rushers -- Ford and Ware-- even Alabama's #1 defense will have problems.
Sure, Alabama has playmakers, including RB Richardson. But I'll give the edge to LSU with Jordan Jefferson over A.J. McCarron. And if Jefferson goes down there is always dependable Jarrett Lee who is eager to redeem himself after the 2 INT performance in November. There is no one with that kind of experience behind McCarron.
Defensively, both are rock solid fundamentally and technically. I do, however, like the corners of LSU in Mathieu and Claiborne. And the relentless pressure of LSU's defensive front (37 sacks) can rattle McCarron.
It will eventually come down to making big time plays and that's why I like LSU. Mathieu (Aka honey badger) has done it all year and he shines in these moments. Special teams, holding on to the football, and calculated risk by Miles and his staff have me taking the points. It's hard to go against a head coach with an amazing 48-4 SU mark in prime time night games.
Atlanta (+3) for 2 Units ** Loss Falcons/Giants 1:00: I respect what Eli Manning has done this season. He was sensational in guiding NY to the playoffs. And he is thankful for Victor Cruz, who has been the breakout performer of the year. However, the Giants' run game is a concern (last in the NFL at 89 ypg), and defensively, despite their awesome front line sack quartet, they give up a lot of yardage through the air. Furthermore, they're frequently penalized and specialty teams are suspect. Sure, the Falcons have their share of flaws but are dangerous as a dog here, where they're 4-1 SU and 5-0 ATS. And the dome friendly Falcons couldn't have asked for better weather this time of year -- mid 40s with light wind and no precipitation. Falcons are eager to attain their first playoff win in the Mike Smith era and should play hungry. The Falcons have a solid run game with RB Michael Turner to keep the sack happy front line from racing up the field each play. And the Falcons' offensive line has gelled in the second half of the season (2nd fewest sacks allowed). QB Matt Ryan has a talented receiving corps, including a game breaking vertical threat in Julio Jones. Falcons are a sweet 7-3 ATS on the road against a team with a winning home record. The Giants, however, have been a money burning venture as small home chalk at 1-6-1 ATS. Falcons the call.
Denver (+9) for 1.5 Units *' Winner Pittsburgh/Denver 4:30: Based on Steelers injuries in key offensive positions, I feel we get decent value with the home team here. The Steelers come into this one banged up in key positions: Roethlisberger aggravated his ankle injury --sustained in week 14-- last week in the win over Cleveland. Moreover, the Steelers' starting RB Mendenhall tore up his knee and out. If that weren't enough, their starting center Pouncey. The Denver defense plays the run reasonably well and Pittsburgh may have difficulty moving the football with backups Redman (2 fumbles last week) and John Clay. The relentless pass rush of Denver may give Roethlisberger trouble -- for his mobility is limited on that tender ankle. Offensively, Denver's lethargic offense won't light up the scoreboard vs the top defense in the NFL. However, the Broncos have a go-to back in 1200 yard rusher McGahee. And although Tebow did not play well the last two games (4 INTs, 2 lost fumbles), he is a fierce competitor and that is worth something in a big game. The Steelers' defense forced the fewest turnovers in the league this year and we'll look for the Broncos to hold on to the ball and stay in this one. Technically, the dog in this series is 4-1 ATS. Steelers are just 2-7 ATS in their last 9 road games. And keep in mind that home playoff dogs are 14-3 ATS. Denver the call.
N.Illinois (+2) for 1.5 Units *' Winner N.Illinois/Ark State 9:00: Hugh Freeze did an amazing job in his first year as head coach at Arkansas State. He not only kept his offense producing at a high level, but got the defense to buckle down as the #1 unit in the Sun Belt Conference. The only problem is that he and some of his key staff have bailed to Ole Miss. I don't like change in these instances where a team had quick success and a subsequent fleeting of the coaching staff when bowl season comes around. Yesterday was another example of a coaching change having an immediate negative impact on a bowl team as Pittsburgh was sleep walking through their blowout loss to SMU. Tonight, Ark State will have its running backs coach (retained by Malzahn) on the sideline leading them. His leadership skills are questionable at best and the Red Wolves should lose their direction here. N. Illinois has more stability in their coaching staff and a brilliant and versatile QB in Harnish. Moreover, his veteran offensive line did not give up a sack all season. We'll look for the Huskies to trade points effectively now that the very good Red Wolves defense lost its leadership with the defection of their defensive coordinator in prep for this game. I can't give points with team in a state of flux with their coaching staff. And the Red Wolves weren't a great small favorite to begin with at 1-5 ATS. Huskies the call.
SMU Under (47) for 3 Units *** Winner SMU/Pittsburgh 1:00: Down the stretch of the season, both of these teams struggled putting points on the board: SMU stumbled on an 0-6 ATS slide with a lack of running game, turnovers, and mediocre QB play; over the same span, Pittsburgh stayed in games (5-1 ATS) with great defensive play. Today, defense should take precedence. SMU was turnover laden this season with 31 giveaways. QB J.J. McDermott, who replaced ineffective previous SMU starter Padron, threw as many TDs as INTs (16). And the Mustangs could never fully recover offensively after losing RB Zach Line (knee). It won't get easier against a Pittsburgh defense did a fine job for most of the year. On the other hand, Pittsburgh's program took a hit with the loss of HC Graham, who bailed on his team to AZ State. He let his team know via text message. That kind of instability in the program (3rd coach in 2 seasons) should have Pittsburgh sleep walk through this one, especially offensively, considering Graham conducted and designed a majority of the offense; Pittsburgh's QB Sunseri, was sacked 57 times this season. Without stable leadership, he and the offensive line should be in for more confusion today against a respectable SMU defense. Pittsburgh's DC Patterson -- who acts as the interim HC -- should have the defense continuing to fire away. Technically, Pitt is 1-5 O/U in non conference play and 4-10 O/U as a favorite in this spread range. SMU is on a 1-5 O/U run and 2-5 O/U as a dog. Under it is.
Cincinnati (+4) for 2 Units ** Loss Bengals/Texans 4:30: Playoff dogs in this round are 6-2 ATS and I'm not going to fight that trend here. I believe QB Andy Dalton, who's 3-0 throughout his high school and collegiate career at Reliant Stadium, will show up with a strong performance while the Bengals' defense delivers. Cincinnati has a respectable offense when healthy. Dalton has been successful this season because of a solid supporting cast. Julio Jones can stretch the field, TE Gresham is fearless over the middle, and RB Benson is an underrated horse who should do damage against an over-aggressive Wade Phillips' defense. We'll look for the Bengals' smart OC Gruden to make the right calls today and put the Bengals in position to win. Houston's offense struggled down the stretch of the season and should carry over into this one. The Bengals gave the Texans a rough time in the first meeting. Yates threw the last second TD pass to claim victory at Cincinnati. Today, I think he'll have a rougher time against the respectable Cincy defense that should shut running lanes down better than last week against Ray Rice. Houston's RB Foster has been limited in success recently. Without Foster running well in inside/outside zone, Yates won't have success in play action. Furthermore, the Bengals are more consistent in special teams play. We'll look for the Bengals to get revenge and move to 7-2-1 ATS in their last 10 road games.
Detroit Over (59) for 1.5 Units *' Winner Detroit/New Orleans 8:00: Still see value with the total despite the high number. The Saints are putting up 41 points per game at home and now that their offense is in fine tune rhythm, I don't see the Lions's defense slowing them down. On the other hand, the Saints' defense has its share of weakness and Stafford, who's thrown for 5000+ yards, has the surrounding cast to help the Lions keep pace on the scoreboard. Detroit sports a 10-4-1 O/U mark as a dog; they're also 34-16-1 O/U on the road. The Saints control a 6-1-1 O/U mark in playoff games. I the first meeting, the Lions committed 11 penalties for 107 yards. That clearly took points off the board for Detroit. That was stressed over their prep this week. We'll look for a cleaner Detroit team tonight as they effectively trade points with the Saints to clear the "over".
Portland (-2) for 2 Units ** Loss Portland/Phoenix 10:30: Portland has gotten the best in this series and I expect them to deliver tonight. Phoenix is struggling offensively. And considering that has been a major part of their culture from the outset, continued struggles should exist.
The Suns' personnel dictates tempo and scoring; however, they're in the bottom tier in scoring this season. Portland is well disciplined defensively and the effort is there. They're coming off a big win last night and should carry over the winning momentum; after all, the 'Blazers are 14-6-1 ATS unrested and they're pretty deep -- especially compared to last year's injury riddled lineup.
I like the rhythm of their offense as Wallace and Aldridge are playing very well. And their backcourt of Felton and Matthews is starting to gell. On the other hand, Nash can't find his groove and the guys are turning a deaf ear on Gentry.
The 'Blazers can close as a small road favorite at 19-9-1 ATS. Suns struggle lately as a small home dog at 1-5 ATS. Portland the call.
Arkansas (-8') for 1.5 Units *' Winner Kansas State/Arkansas 8:00: K State turned in a great season, and QB Colin Klein is gutsy and dangerous with his feet; however, there is a major flaw in the Wildcats' game that Arkansas' HC Petrino should exploit. The Wildcats' pass defense has been shoddy against good passing teams and it should haunt them tonight.
K-State allows a generous 267 yards per game through the air which ranks 105th nationally. I don't like to get caught up in statistics for some teams yield large chunks of yardage but are able to keep teams out of the end zone -- which is most important. In this instance, it will be extremely difficult because Arkansas likes to play at a fast tempo when moving the football; consequently, through the course of a game, the no-huddle can create an enervating effect on the defense -- especially the defensive front -- which gasses quickly chasing QBs. And you don't want QB Tyler Wilson having good views in a step slow secondary with speedy Jarius Wright roaming. The Sooners took advantage of K-State's weakness by wearing them down over the course of the game and I expect the same here.
Arkansas' defense does a respectable job keeping teams out of the end zone -- yielding 23 points per game. They have a fast, ball-hawking secondary and do a decent job closing running lanes. Colin Klein will be difficult to stop -- he has a solid supporting cast; however, through the course of the game, K-State's offense doesn't have enough of a pass game to hang with the Hogs. And Arkansas has good discipline in their specialty teams to prevent big plays.
Technically, Arkansas is 5-1 ATS as a favorite in this spread range and 8-2 ATS vs the Big 12. K-State is a mere 8-20 ATS in non-conference play. We'll roll with the well balanced Razorbacks.
NCAA Hoops: Pittsburgh (-4') for 2 Units ** Pittsburgh/DePaul 7:00: I realize that Pittsburgh is struggling without their point man -- Woodall (abdominal). The Panthers have lost three straight and go on the road into an improving venue where the Blue Demons have won 5 of 8. And surely DePaul will employ full court pressure to continue to disrupt the Panthers' offense, which doesn't have a true point guard to fill Woodall's shoes.
Nevertheless, we'll rely on Pittsburgh's coach Dixon to create the fix here. He has talent to work with and he usually brings out the best in it. Dixon had time to work on handling full court pressure and creating quick transition points. The Panthers are a fierce rebounding team and much better defensively than DePaul. DePaul has padded their win total against lower tier teams but now that conference play has arrived, the Demon Deacons should continue their struggles following the loss to Syracuse. DePaul is 0-5-1 ATS in their last 6 vs the Big East.
Pittsburgh has gotten the best of this series at 4-1-1 ATS and covered 4 of their last 5 as a road favorite. We'll look for the Panthers to stop the bleeding here.
Wednesday: January 4, 2012
St. Louis (-3') for 3 Units *** Loss St. Louis/Dayton 8:00: The Billikens are perhaps one shooter away from doing damage nationally. They're well coached, defensively stifling and finally have some shooters. They make a challenging task for Dayton, which will be without one of their key rebounders and inside players.
St. Louis has a dangerous inside outside game with G Mitchell and F Conklin. And Evans is a defensive beast down low who cleans the glass well. Dayton will be hard pressed to counter the low post without F Josh Benson who injured his knee against Ole Miss in the last game. He's a double-digit scorer and key rebounder.
St. Louis is more well rounded than Dayton and the Billikens are in an ornery mood after falling at New Mexico (but covered), which is a tough place to play. St. Louis has covered 6 of the last 7 in this series and 4-0 ATS at Dayton. Flyers are a mere 5-11 ATS vs a team with winning % above .600. St. Louis the call.
NCAA Football: Clemson (-3) for 2 Units ** Loss West Virginia/Clemson 8:30: Both of these teams have explosive offenses and suspect defenses. I'll give the edge to the Clemson Tigers based on several key factors:
Clemson has a more balanced offensive attack -- with a run game of 156 ypg to WV's 118. WV lost their starting RB Garrison (knee) in prep for this game. And although they have Buie and Alston -- two fine replacements, they're not as effective picking up blitzes or as screen runners; consequently, more pressure on QB Geno Smith to go to the air. And the Clemson defensive speed could very well be disruptive to Smith. Clemson's defense will blitz from all angles and create hurried throws by Smith, much like Syracuse did to him on prime time in late October -- WV's 49-23 debacle. I like Clemson's QB Boyd who is a duel threat with his arm and legs. And he has a 1000+ rusher in Ellington to take the pressure off him.
Moreover, Clemson is a bit more disciplined in ball control with a +2 turnover margin to WV's -2. In addition, Clemson is less penalized, and convert better on 3rd down at a 45% to 38% for WV. We'll give the edge to Clemson tonight.
Tuesday: NCAA Football:
Virginia Tech (+3) for 1.5 Units *' Push Michigan/Virginia Tech 9:30: Virginia Tech's two blowout losses to Clemson this season doesn't clearly define the Hokies' football program. They turned in a solid season and have a chip on their shoulder coming in here in regards to the lack of respect their getting pitted in a BCS bowl. Michigan, on the other hand, turned their program around -- thanks to a huge improvement defensively; however, given the Big Ten's dismal record in bowl games (3-6 SU/ATS), I'm reluctant to go with the Wolves as a favorite.
Denard Robinson and a revitalized defense adds value to the Wolverines as a favorite; after all, the Wolverines rolled over many Big Ten foes this season; however, V Tech defensive coordinator Bud Foster, who's been in that position 16 years and has done a remarkable job, has had success stopping a similar offense. V Tech's Foster installed a great defensive plan a few years back when QB Pat White, who was similar in athleticism to Robinson, guided WV to national prominence. The Hokies won both games. Robinson is the focal point with QB powers, QB zone, QB draws, QB sweeps. RB Toussaint also lends problems. Not impressed by Robinson's passing accuracy and that should be the difference.
We'll look for Tech to use a heavy dose of ACC POY Wilson, while QB Logan Thomas manages the game well. Hokies are always a dangerous dog at 14-6 ATS, including 5-2 ATS in this spread range. Wolves struggle as a small favorite at 1-7 ATS and 0-4 ATS on sport turf. Tech the call. Monday:
NCAA Football: *Best Bet* Wisconsin (+6) for 3.5 Units ***' Wisconsin/Oregon 5:00: Good value with a well balanced Badgers team that plays the bowl dog role well. This season was a major upgrade as well with Russell Wilson as QB. And the outstanding RB Ball(2014 rush yards) should keep Wisconsin very competitive tonight.
Wisconson's QB Wilson had a tremendous year and he finished the regular season strong (12 TD / 0 INT) on a 5-0 run. Oregon's defense doesn't sit too long because of a no-huddle offense that doesn't waste time scoring. We'll look for the Badgers' balanced offensive attack to methodically pound their way to victory tonight. They're less turnover prone and possess a better defense. Now the Badgers' defense will sorely be tested. Oregon is equipped with speed to burn and won't be stopped. But the Ducks occasionally become careless with the football and because of the long layoff from when the season ended till now, timing and rhythm, which is essential in their offense, could be altered to the downside. We'll look for Wisconsin's opportunistic defense to capitalize on turnovers and allow the Badgers' potent offense to deliver.
Oregon has struggled vs the Big 10 at 1-4 ATS and dropped 4 of their last 5 ATS as a bowl favorite. The Badgers are a dangerous bowl dog at 6-1 ATS and should deliver.
Florida Under (44) for 1.5 Units *' Fla/OSU 1:00: Both of these offenses rank in the lower tier of NCAA Div 1A football. However, both defenses remain solid under the current defensive minded coaches: UF's Muschamp and OSU's Fickell. We should see a grind it out game with the run game taking precedence and heavy punting activity.
The Gators and Buckeyes rank 102nd and 107th, respectively, in offensive production. Florida's Brantley has been turnover prone for most of the year and today he'll have to face a hard nosed OSU defense without the voice of guidance he heard most the year OC Charlie Weiss (Kansas). Consequently, confusion and penalties should play a major part of the Gator's offense. On the other hand, the Buckeyes should rely on the their run game, which grinds out nearly 200 yards per game, and eat plenty of clock in the process.
OSU is 1-5-1 O/U on grass surfaces, 2-5 O/U in bowl games and 0-4 O/U on neutral fields. Florida is 1-4 O/U in non-conference play. "Under" the call.
Ohio State (+2') for 2 Units ** Florida/Ohio State 1:00: Two storied programs now turned mediocre square off. I believe OSU is in much better shape going forward; after all, Urban Meyer takes over and his name surrounding the program should create an instant buzz. Muschamp and his Gators, however, will have a difficult time. OC Weiss bailed on him to Kansas, and he's left with many holes to fill, especially at the QB spot.
Fla's QB Brantley play confused for most of the season and now he has his running backs coach guiding the offense. The OSU defense remains solid under Fickell and should stymie an offense that averaged just under 12 ppg against ranked teams. OSU isn't ranked but does possess a strong defense, which kept them in most games this year.
OSU's offensive numbers are even worse than Florida's. However, OSU QB Miller showed promise -- mostly with his feet -- and limited mistakes (11 TD / 4 INT) during his first year as the signal caller. We'll look for OSU to do what they traditionally do best: play great defense, force turnovers, and pound the rock to put themselves in great position to win.
Michigan State Under (50') for 1.5 Units *' Mich State/Georgia 1:00: Both of these teams have physical defenses that play the run and pass well; as a matter of fact, each allows less than 6 yards per play. We're going to look for a lower scoring game on the Raymond James Stadium grass.
Mich State was virtually one play away from going to the Rose Bowl. They have their best well rounded team maybe ever. Defensively is where they should excel. Georgia, which is coming off getting blasted by LSU, should regroup here. If you recall, the Bulldogs held LSU to nearly a net loss in yardage in the first half before LSU opened up on them in the second half. Michigan State doesn't have that kind of depth talent to bust loose on the Bulldogs. We'll look for more of a dog fight here.
Georgia is 1-4 O/U on grass and 0-5 O/U as a neutral site favorite. The 'Dogs are also 0-6 O/U off a SU loss. Defense takes precedence today in Tampa.
Penn State Under (57) for 1.5 Units *' Penn State/Houston 12:00: Contrast in offensive styles here. Houston will hang its hat on record setting QB Keenum who put up gaudy numbers over the course of his long career. And RB Charles Sims collected 782 rushing yards this season to complement the passing game. Penn State, however, won't have their starting QB McGloin (concussion). Not that he was that productive to begin with, but a major upgrade over sophomore fill in Boldin who hasn't played well when given the opportunity. The 'Lions should be one dimensional with 1100+ rusher Silas Redd.
Case Keenum has struggled when pitted against an aggressive defense -- as exhibited by S.Miss taking it to him in the final game of the season. Keenum has only 3 TD passes and 7 interceptions in three bowl games. Penn State is by far the best defense he has faced and should struggle. On the other hand, Houston's defensive weakness is their run stop unit -- which allows 171 yards per game. Penn State will attempt to physically out muscle the Houston front 7 with a heavy dose of Silas Redd. Thus the methodical clock eating run game of Penn State and ineffectiveness of Keenum should result in a lower scoring game.
Penn State is 1-7-1 O/U against winning teams, 2-7-1 O/U followinng a 20+ point loss, and 2-6 O/U as a dog in this spread range.