B/R College Football 2022 Betting Locks with Adam Kramer: Week 9

Adam KramerOctober 27, 2022

LOUISVILLE, KY - OCTOBER 22: Pittsburgh Panthers quarterback Kedon Slovis (9) passes during the college football game between the Pittsburgh Panthers and the Louisville Cardinals on October 22, 2022, at Cardinal Stadium in Louisville, Kentucky. (Photo by Michael Allio/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Michael Allio/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

If you followed last week's college football picks against the spread, you had a wonderful, profitable weekend. It's that simple.

Sure, we had a few "meh" Saturdays leading up to Week 8 after a strong opening. Then, as if on cue, we turned in an 8-1 week.

It didn't look like it would end up that way at first. In fact, we started with a pretty gross loss. (More on that in a moment.) From then on, though, we were perfect.

For the year, we are now 47-28-3 against the spread. Still, we are not satisfied.

Before we get to this week’s selections, here is what went right (a bunch) and what went wrong (very little) last week.

The Good: SMU (+3.5) vs. Cincinnati: While many of the games we picked were relatively easy covers, this was not one of them. SMU trailed 29-14 deep in the third quarter, but the Mustangs scored two touchdowns in the fourth to secure the cover. This one had plenty of luck, and I'll gladly take it.

The Bad: Miami (-9) vs. Duke: We only had one loss last week, but it was a grotesque one. Miami lost its starting QB to injury, turned the ball over eight times and lost by 24 points at home. A disastrous season for the Hurricanes took another turn. This was a truly terrible pick; thank goodness it didn't have company.

Now, let's get to this week's picks.

All odds courtesy of DraftKings and accurate as of Wednesday.

Louisville (+3.5) vs. Wake Forest

LOUISVILLE, KY - OCTOBER 22: Louisville WR Jaelin Carter (88) during a college football game between the Pittsburgh Panthers and Louisville Cardinals on October 22, 2022 at Cardinal Stadium in Louisville, Kentucky. (Photo by James Black/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
James Black/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

For the second successive week, we’re backing Louisville.

The Cardinals were wonderful to us last week as a small underdog against Pittsburgh. Louisville won by two touchdowns behind an outstanding performance by its defense. This week, it will have to duplicate that effort against the nation's No. 10 scoring offense.

I believe it will.

Strangely, this will only be Louisville's third home game of the year. Wake Forest, meanwhile, will be playing its third road game of the season.

The fact that the nation’s No. 10 team is such a small favorite against a program that has won four football games this year is certainly noteworthy. As a result, Wake Forest is likely to draw a ton of public interest.

You know the drill. We're going the other way. Louisville, behind its defense and a sneaky-good home-field advantage, could certainly swing an upset here.

UCF (+1) vs. Cincinnati

BOCA RATON, FLORIDA - SEPTEMBER 17: Head coach Gus Malzahn of the UCF Knights looks on during pregame warm-ups prior to a game against the Florida Atlantic Owls at FAU Stadium on September 17, 2022 in Boca Raton, Florida. (Photo by Megan Briggs/Getty Images)
Megan Briggs/Getty Images

Both of these programs were also involved in our magical run last week.

We faded UCF against East Carolina, and that worked out well. And, as referenced above, SMU did enough to keep it inside the number against Cincinnati.

Once again, I'm fading the Bearcats.

In its past three home games, Central Florida has outscored opponents 138-42. Gus Malzahn's team seems to have a different gear in its own building, and it will attempt to find it again against the No. 20 team in the AP Poll.

On the other side, Cincinnati has yet to cover a spread on the road this season. While I love the resolve the Bearcats have shown after losing so much talent over the past offseason, it feels like another loss is simply a matter of time.

The Knights get right with a close win.

Missouri (+4) vs. South Carolina

COLUMBIA, MO - OCTOBER 22: Nathaniel Peat #8 of the Missouri Tigers runs the ball against Anfernee Orji #0 of the Vanderbilt Commodores during the second half at Faurot Field/Memorial Stadium on October 22, 2022 in Columbia, Missouri. (Photo by Jay Biggerstaff/Getty Images)
Jay Biggerstaff/Getty Images

Shane Beamer is one of the few coaches who actually looks like he enjoys coaching. Although we are fading South Carolina’s head coach this week, I do appreciate the job he's done over his first year-plus with the Gamecocks.

This week, however, Missouri feels like a live road dog.

Whether they're playing Vanderbilt or Georgia, the Tigers have kept it tight with every team over the past month. In that time, they're 3-1 against the spread.

On Saturday, Missouri will catch a team fresh off a sizable win over Texas A&M. To be clear, "sizable" can mean a few things. While beating A&M is a big deal given how much the Aggies have invested in their program, it also wasn't necessarily a shocking outcome.

It feels like this game will mirror the tight one South Carolina just played. It's the type of game both teams will be comfortable with.

The Gamecocks win, but Missouri keeps it tight.

Pittsburgh (+3) at North Carolina

LOUISVILLE, KY - OCTOBER 22: Pittsburgh DB Erick Hallett (31) during a college football game between the Pittsburgh Panthers and Louisville Cardinals on October 22, 2022 at Cardinal Stadium in Louisville, Kentucky. (Photo by James Black/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
James Black/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

An ACC-heavy week continues, as does the bounce-back theme.

Despite struggling to do much offensively last week, Pittsburgh is only a short dog on the road against one of the nation's surprise teams.

Offensively, Pitt QB Kedon Slovis was not sharp on Saturday. He should have a much easier time putting up points against the nation’s No. 113 scoring defense. Perhaps even more concerning for the Tar Heels is the fact that they currently own the nation's No. 109 rushing defense.

They will now have to slow Israel Abanikanda, Pitt's starting running back who is ranked fourth in rushing yards this season. It's a potential matchup nightmare, one the Panthers should be in a position to capitalize on.

As for North Carolina, I certainly love watching Drake Maye throw. The young QB has blossomed into a star overnight, but the best win on UNC's schedule to date is probably Duke, and it feels like a slight market correction is in order.

Texas A&M (+2.5) vs. Ole Miss

ARLINGTON, TEXAS - SEPTEMBER 24: Head coach Jimbo Fisher of the Texas A&M Aggies walks off the field after taking on the Arkansas Razorbacks in the first half of the 2022 Southwest Classic at AT&T Stadium on September 24, 2022 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
Tom Pennington/Getty Images

Now, before you laugh or run from this piece of content, let me explain a few things.

This is not pretty, and I expect the response from this selection to be strong. Texas A&M has injured offensive linemen, suspended freshmen, a losing record and a head coach owed essentially a luxury yacht worth of guaranteed money.

However, Texas A&M has played its past three games on the road against three quality opponents. To be clear, I am not excusing Jimbo Fisher’s dreadful 3-4 start; I am merely stating how we arrived here.

On the other sideline, Ole Miss did not play well last week on the road against LSU in its first major road trip of the season. For all the issues the Aggies have had, home field is still massive, the defense can still play and the offense still has talent—albeit a fair amount that seems untapped.

It won't be pretty or easy, but A&M finds a way to hand Ole Miss its second loss.

Let the commentary flow.

Other Games on the Card

CHAMPAIGN, ILLINOIS - OCTOBER 15: Head coach P. J. Fleck of the Minnesota Golden Gophers celebrates a touchdown with his team during the first half in the game against the Illinois Fighting Illini at Memorial Stadium on October 15, 2022 in Champaign, Illinois. (Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images)
Justin Casterline/Getty Images

Utah vs. Washington State (Over 55)

It might be a closer game than many expect, and it will likely be a shoutout. We saw how potent the Utah offense can be against USC, and Washington State has flashed at times as well.

Marshall (-2.5) vs. Coastal Carolina

It’s been a strange year for Marshall, which has huge wins over Notre Dame and James Madison along with a few ugly losses. Taking on 6-1 Coastal Carolina, Marshall adds another solid win to its rollercoaster resume.

BYU (-3) vs. East Carolina

Remember when BYU was ranked and on a roll? Me too. Three straight losses have derailed that momentum, although they came against quality teams. On Friday night, the Cougars get some momentum back.

Minnesota (-14) vs. Rutgers

The angle here is pretty straightforward: Minnesota is simply better. Rutgers is coming off a win over Indiana, and Minnesota was blown out by Penn State. The roles will be reversed this week as the Gophers get back on track.

Auburn (+3.5) vs. Arkansas

Weird things happen when football games are played at Auburn, and it feels like we're in store for some of that strangeness here. The Tigers come home for the first time in weeks and pull off a mild upset.

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