Maryland +1.5 at Syracuse – This is a tough line, because Syracuse has put together Jeckyl and Hyde performances in its first two games. The Orange escaped Villanova in double overtime in week one, before smashing Central Michigan on the road last week. Maryland lost at the horn against West Virginia, which was a heartbreaking defeat. QB CJ Brown is a very dangerous dual threat, and I think his ability to run and pass will strain the SU defense. Despite a big win last week, I was frankly a bit surprised to see the Orange favored.
Utah +3.5 at Michigan – The line has fallen from about 5-6 to 3.5, so you know the public has been hammering Utah. Michigan has been very shaky this season, to put it kindly. I figured the Wolverines would annihilate Miami (OH). Three turnovers within a few minutes put the kibosh on that idea, and UM is -7 in turnovers through 3 games. A little regression to the mean is due here, but what if this team just isn’t that good? The status of Michigan’s best player, WR Devin Funchess, is unknown at this point.
Utah is coming off a bye, and Travis Wilson is a promising quarterback. It’s only two games, but Wilson has thrown 6 TDs and 0 INTs while averaging 11.7 yards per pass attempt. The Utes have a good chance of winning this game outright.
Mississippi State +9 at LSU – Another line that has fallen a bit. The Tigers have whitewashed two easy opponents after the thrilling comeback against Wisconsin at NRG Stadium in the first week of the season.
Meanwhile, the Bulldogs are 3-0, with wins over Southern Miss, UAB, and South Alabama. The most striking point is the performance of QB Dak Prescott: Nearly 700 passing yards, 9 TD, 2 INT, and 273 rushing yards. He’s one of the better dual threat QBs in the nation.
Watching LSU in Wisconsin, my opinion is that you can stress the Tigers if you contain the ground attack. Put Anthony Jennings in a position to where he has to complete big passes in long down and distance situations. I think MSU keeps it close at Tiger Stadium.
Alabama -14 vs Florida – Watching Florida last week against Kentucky, I still don’t think there is enough firepower on offense to compete on the upper echelon of the SEC. They really struggled to get it going until late in the game, and UK’s defense is not of Bama’s caliber.
I do also believe Alabama is not the relative juggernaut we’ve seen the last 3-5 years, mainly because of the drop-off at QB. Still, TJ Yeldon and Derrick Henry are excellent running backs, and Amari Cooper has been fantastic after a quietly disappointing sophomore season. I have a tough time seeing UF keeping this game within two touchdowns.
Last week = 1-1
Mike Meltser can be heard on MaD Radio from 10am-2pm
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