Day Time Free College Football Picks (10/9/10)

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Matchup: Indiana Hoosiers @ Ohio State Buckeyes
Date: Saturday, October 9th, 12:00 ET
Location: Ohio Stadium, Columbus, OH
Game Line: Ohio State -22.5
Over/Under 57.5

Many might think that the way to go in this NCAA football betting battle is by taking the visiting Hoosiers due to the nature of what they did last week in nearly upsetting the Michigan Wolverines. However, we must remember that IU hasn't faced a team that plays defense like Ohio State all season long, and it also hasn't played a real road test against a legitimate conference contender at this point either. We love QB Ben Chappell and think that he has the goods to be a professional quarterback at some level, but this is too tough of a matchup for him to excel. The Buckeyes had their slip last week against Illinois and lived to tell about it. Unless there is a bit of a look ahead syndrome going on with the Wisconsin Badgers coming up next week, we are sure that OSU is going to want to come back and absolutely throw the gauntlet down. QB Denard Robinson absolutely shredded this Indiana defense last week. QB Terrelle Pryor might be able to do the same. The difference is that the Hoosiers won't be scoring 35 points this weekend like they did last weekend.

Free College Football Picks: Ohio State -22.5
Prediction: Ohio State 45 – Indiana 17

Matchup: Illinois Fighting Illini @ Penn State Nittany Lions
Date: Saturday, October 9th, 12:00 ET
Location: Beaver Stadium, University Park, PA
Game Line: Penn State -7.5
Over/Under 42

The Nittany Lions are out of the Top 25 this week, while the Illini nearly snuck into it after a near miss against the Ohio State Buckeyes last weekend. The bottom line for the Nittany Lions is that they are going to be overmatched by the best teams in the Big Ten all season long due to the fact that QB Robert Bolden, as a freshman, just isn't able to keep up with what the conference is throwing his way. However, Illinois isn't a top notch Big Ten team, nor is it even remotely close. This is also a team with a freshman QB Nathan Scheelhaase. Yes, Scheelhaase put together a respectable performance last weekend against the Bucks, but this game will be significantly different on the road in front of 90,000+ screaming fans in Happy Valley. PSU is going to be eager to prove that last week's loss to the Iowa Hawkeyes on the road was merely a bump in the road, and it will do so by stomping Illinois with a strong second half, just like the Bucks did last weekend.

Free College Football Picks: Penn State -7.5
Prediction: Penn State 27 – Illinois 13

Matchup: Tennessee Volunteers @ Georgia Bulldogs
Date: Saturday, October 9th, 12:21 ET
Location: Sanford Stadium, Athens, GA
Game Line: Georgia -11
Over/Under 48

"Between the Hedges" we go for another SEC betting battle between the Dawgs and the Vols. These two teams really don't like each other, and the Bulldogs are going to want to get some big time payback for last season's 45-19 blowout on Rocky Top. The Dawgs only have one win in this series since 2005, including when the Vols came here and won 51-33 in 2006. Tennessee has covered the NCAA football betting lines in four straight between these SEC East rivals. Georgia has never gotten off to this bad of a start in SEC play, nor has it ever endured a four game losing streak under HC Mark Richt. Is this team better than its record? Probably. Is it significantly better than its record? Probably not. UGA has gotten a real shot in the arm with the return of WR AJ Green to the lineup, but the Volunteers are only going to have to key in on him to stop on this offense. Last week, when faced with a similar situation with the LSU Tigers and RB Steven Ridley, Tennessee came just one play away from pulling off the ultimate upset in the Bayou. Don't be so surprised if an upset is in the cards, and if that's the case, Richt might find himself out of a job before the beginning of next week, as 1-5 won't sit well with the Georgia boosters.

Free College Football Picks: Tennessee +11
Prediction: Tennessee 20 – Georgia 17

Matchup: Alabama Crimson Tide @ South Carolina Gamecocks
Date: Saturday, October 9th, 3:30 ET
Location: Williams Brice Stadium, Columbia, SC
Game Line: South Carolina +7
Over/Under 47.5

It's easy to just make college football picks on the Crimson Tide after destroying the Florida Gators last weekend, but this is a type of challenge of the likes that has not been seen before by this team. Yes, the Tide rolled into Fayetteville and took care of the Arkansas Razorbacks with a nice surge at the end of the game. We must note that that was Alabama's one failed cover of the season to date. The difference here? The Gamecocks have had two weeks to prepare for this game and haven't really had anything on their minds but getting revenge for the game two weeks ago at Jordan Hare Stadium, a narrow defeat against the Texas A&M Aggies. We know that RB Mark Ingram is still probably the favorite to win the Heisman Trophy. We still know that QB Greg McElroy hasn't lost a game as a starting quarterback since he was in eighth grade. We still know that the Tide just absolutely crippled the Florida offense last week and has the top scoring 'D' in the land. But there's something about this game that just feels different. The Ol' Ball Coach, HC Steve Spurrier has to have some things up his sleeve, and all of the tricks will be coming out of the bag in this one. This would be a defining moment in South Carolina football history if it could win this game, and we think that the upset just might be in the cards on Saturday afternoon.

Free College Football Picks: South Carolina +7
Prediction: South Carolina 27 – Alabama 26

Matchup: Arkansas Razorbacks vs. Texas A&M Aggies
Date: Saturday, October 9th, 3:30 ET
Location: Dallas Cowboys Stadium, Arlington, TX
Game Line: Texas A&M +5.5
Over/Under 62.5

The Hogs and Aggies have ties going back to the olden days, and this is the second straight year that they will play at a neutral site to renew old ties. Last year, QB Ryan Mallett went absolutely bananas, throwing for 271 yards and four TDs against a Texas A&M team that just had no answers. Arkansas is coming off of that crushing fourth quarter rally of a defeat at the hands of the Alabama Crimson Tide, something that clearly will not be forgotten easily. A&M has struggled trying to protect QB Jerrod Johnson, who is one of the best dual threat signal callers in the land. HC Bobby Petrino has been scheming for this one for two weeks. We also tend to believe that the Hogs have the ability to play with the Crimson Tide, therefore they can beat anyone in America. This game will probably be no exception. Last week was a shootout in which Johnson threw four picks against the Oklahoma State Cowboys, and if he makes those same types of mistakes this weekend, it is going to be one heck of a lot afternoon in "Big D."

Free College Football Picks: Arkansas -5.5
Prediction: Arkansas 37 – Texas A&M 21

Matchup: Michigan State Spartans @ Michigan Wolverines
Date: Saturday, October 9th, 3:30 ET
Location: Michigan Stadium, Ann Arbor, MI
Game Line: Michigan -4.5
Over/Under 62.5

This game has the potential to have some real fireworks in it, as the "Big Game" has really not been this big in a number of years. The Wolverines and Spartans are both 5-0 and both think that this is the year that they can go to the Rose Bowl. However, both have a history of this being the time of year that they fold up shop and are never heard from again, and that's exactly what they're both trying to avoid. For HC Rich Rodriguez, this game is even more important. The Spartans are on house money, and regardless of whether every single game down the stretch is lost or not, HC Mark Dantonio's job is safe after that fake field goal call that beat the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. Rodriguez… not so much. What Rich Rod does have on his side is the most dynamic player in the country, QB Denard Robinson. He'll become the first man to get to 1,000 rushing yards in all likelihood in this game, and he'll also be well over the 2,000 yard mark for the year between rushing and passing when it's all said and done. The Spartans have never faced a team with this type of an offense and haven't played a true road game this year (the one "road game" was "at" Florida Atlantic… at Ford Field). It will be up to RB Edwin Baker and RB Le'Veon Bell to control the clock and keep Robinson off the field. However, Big Blue has struggled trying to stop the pass this year, not the rush. In fact, this is the worst rated pass defense in the nation at over 307 yards per game. Still, if QB Kirk Cousins can't get going in a big way, Michigan is going to end up rolling over the Spartans. This game means too much to the maize and blue to be beaten. A bowl game will be a guarantee when Saturday is over.

Free College Football Picks: Michigan -4.5
Prediction: Michigan 40 – Michigan State 28

Matchup: Virginia Cavaliers @ Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets
Date: Saturday, October 9th, 3:30 ET
Location: Bobby Dodd Stadium, Atlanta, GA
Game Line: Georgia Tech -10
Over/Under 47

The Cavvies were steamrolled last week by the Florida State Seminoles, but they have a shred of promise for the rest of this season. Meanwhile, the Yellow Jackets are still trying to figure out how they have been stung twice this year and why they are just 1-4 ATS a year after going to the Orange Bowl as the ACC champs. QB Josh Nesbitt is just as dangerous now as he was last season when he led this team to a fantastic season, but his 880 total yards in five games just isn't reflecting that. He needs to find a way to get more involved in the offense, which ranks just 58th in the land in total yards at 388.2 yards per game. Virginia hasn't been great, but sticking in front of a double digit spread, even on the road, seems like a legitimate possibility. Something's wrong with the Ramblin' Wreck right now, and we're determined to take advantage of that. GT might win it, but the Cavs are sticking around for the full 60 minutes.

Free College Football Picks: Virginia +10
Prediction: Georgia Tech 24 – Virginia 20

Matchup: Pittsburgh Panthers @ Notre Dame Fighting Irish
Date: Saturday, October 9th, 3:30 ET
Location: Notre Dame Stadium, South Bend, IN
Game Line: Notre Dame -6
Over/Under 49.5

Is something really wrong with the Panthers right now, or have they just run across a tough spot in the schedule? Their two losses are very respectable ones against the Miami Hurricanes and Utah Utes, and their two wins were both by respectable margins even though they were against sub-par teams. This is the first time this year that they are really on a team in their weight class, per se. The Irish finally got a big win together last week against the Boston College Eagles, and maybe that will jumpstart the season, as the next portion of the schedule just isn't that difficult. The Panthers have health concerns with RB Dion Lewis, while the Irish are still rolling offensively to the tune of 24.6 points per game. We tend to believe that that will be enough to take care of U-Pitt, which really needs to find an identity going into the Big East campaign next week.

Free College Football Picks: Notre Dame -6
Prediction: Notre Dame 28 – Pittsburgh 17

Matchup: Clemson Tigers @ North Carolina Tar Heels
Date: Saturday, October 9th, 3:30 ET
Location: Kenan Memorial Stadium, Chapel Hill, NC
Game Line: North Carolina -2.5
Over/Under 52.5

The Tar Heels are still dealing with a plethora of defensive suspensions, but they seemed to overcome all of those problems last week when they really shut down the powerful East Carolina Pirates with a 42-17 victory. Clemson comes to town now with a slew of questions. The Tigers have two losses, but are defeats against the Auburn Tigers and Miami Hurricanes really that bad? However, they have two wins as well. We already know that beating the North Texas Mean Green and the Presbyterian Blue Hose is nothing to write home about. This is a very good litmus test for both teams. The difference here is that North Carolina is very battle tested and already knows what it takes to win in the ACC. The home game against the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets might have been a defeat, but it certainly might have set the tone for the rest of the season. UNC is the better team in this battle, and as long as QB TJ Yates doesn't put on his pick face all of a sudden, the Tar Heels should be able to snare a win.

Free College Football Picks: North Carolina -2.5
Prediction: North Carolina 27 – Clemson 20

Lou Palumbo is the founder and part owner of the Sports Handicapping Community. He's been writing and posting free picks and sports handicapping strategies on the Cappersinfo forums and website for 15 years now. He enjoys handicapping just as much as he did from the very first day he built the original Cappersinfo website.

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