UCF Knights -12 at Pitt Panthers
Over / Under 57.5

Here are two teams that seem to be on my radar every week and for different reasons.

Let’s start with Pitt.

First off, last week’s game against Penn State, was a close loss (17-10). That’s basically a “win” for a team as bad as Pitt. And the truth is, that nobody wants to hear at the moment is : “Penn State is really not that good.” Trust me, as a Penn State fan, I’ve seen it breaking down since last year. A good enough defense can crush this offensive line, and a team determined to run up the gut against the Lions, will succeed more times than not.

Pitt can play good defense. They were doing well in the first half against Virginia, leading 14-13. But the offense couldn’t muster another point in the second half and lost 30-14. In their game against Penn State last week, they held the Lions to 17 points, after they just put up 45 and 79 points in back to back weeks.

Pitt’s issue is offense, where they are averaging under 15 points per game and under 3 yards a rush. Quarterback Kenny Pickett is doing what he can, completing 63% of his passes at 6.8 yards a pass. He stacked his stats against MAC opponent Ohio (who’s starting quarterback was sick in that match up) and an overrated Penn State defense.

Pickett will have himself tested against a UCF pass defense allowing a completion percentage of 44.8%. UCF’s defense also allows just about what Pitt rushes for on the ground, 2.7 yards per rush. This juggernaut of a team is averaging 51.6 points per game so far this season and it seems people are just waiting on their downfall. FAU was supposed to be the “sexy” underdog pick against them in Week Two, but Beating Vegas told you “don’t over think it.” Then on the Beating Vegas Podcast we told you, “Stanford can’t keep up with UCF’s speed.”

There is no reason to believe that Pitt will score much against UCF. And on the flip side, there is no reason to believe Pitt won’t force UCF into punting a few possessions away.

Vegas is banking on the fact that the public will be seeing a “let down” of sorts from UCF, but that’s not in their nature. If this spread goes up to 20 there is no reason to be scared of it.

The Pick: UCF -14

Source: Quinn Harris/Getty Images North America

Louisiana Monroe +20.5 at Iowa State
OVer / Under 56.5

Coming into this game one thing is for certain: Iowa State has been playing with fire so far this season. The Cyclones edged out Northern Iowa 29-26 in week one, and then in week two against rival Iowa, they lost 18-17.

Iowa State comes out of the Big 12 Conference which is typically known for high scoring offenses, the Cyclones are at the basement of that points per game column with 23 per game.

Source: David Purdy/Getty Images North America

The offense led by quarterback Brock Purdy is completing 68% of his passes and spreads the ball around nicely and has two nice targets in junior Tarique Milton and senior Deshaunte Jones.

LA Monroe, had an easy win against Grambling State to open the season, and then traveled down to Florida State and lost to the Seminoles 45-44. Now, Florida State is nobody’s favorite team now-a-days and they may be looking for a new head coach at the end of the season, but there is no way the Warhawks should’ve stood toe to toe with the Seminoles. At the end of the day, it took Florida States best offensive efforts (32 carries by Cam Akers, 40 pass attempts by James Blackman) to take out LA Monroe by one point.

Caleb Evans is a good game manager under center for the Warhawks, with some mobility who is throwing at a 66% completion percentage so far this season.

The Warhawks running game will be important as they are averaging 6.2 yards a rush after two games this season, going up against a Iowa State run defense allowing 2.1 yards a carry. This comes out to a SMASH average of 3 yards a carry for the Warhawks.

The Warhawks are allowing 5.3 yards a rush, but keep in mind how most of that was due to Cam Akers last week.

Both teams will be able to throw the ball against each other with a fair amount of ease and there is just not enough on paper to lead me to believe that the Cyclones will blow out the Warhawks.

The Pick: Louisiana-Monroe +20.5

Source: Brett Carlsen/Getty Images North America

Louisville Cardinals +6.5 at Florida State Seminoles

Over / Under 61

Last season, Louisville was an absolute joke. Head coach Bobby Petrino went out on an absolute sour note, and the university hired Scott Satterfield, out of Appalachian State. Satterfield has already made good where Petrino failed and has the Cardinals standing at a 2-1 record.

In the opening week of the season, they showed they could hang with Notre Dame for one half of football, but ended up losing 35-17. The next few weeks they beat up on lower level teams from the state of Kentucky and won those two by a combined score of 80-21.

But to know who Louisville is as a team, you got to look at that opener against Notre Dame. Quarterback Jawan Pass could not get anything going in the passing game, but ran the ball 47 times for 249 yards.

Florida State is 1-1 to start the season and thats after losing to Boise (at home) 36-31, and squeezing out a victory over Louisiana Monroe (at home) 45-44.

The Seminoles defense is just bad. Whats worse, is that the university and team are finding it hard to believe in head coach Willie Taggart. This was supposed to be a “slam dunk” hire for Florida State after Jimbo Fisher skipped town, but this has the makings of what happened to Texas under Charlie Strong.

Taggart’s philosophies and methods just don’t seem to be connecting with his players – and this is a problem going against Satterfield, who is one of college football’s best at getting his players to completely “buy in.”

Florida State just doesn’t seemed disciplined. They are allowing opponents to complete passes at a rate of 64.3% which can help out Louisville quarterback Jawon Pass who is a career 55% completion percentage guy.

According to SportsChatPlace.Com the Seminoles are 1-5-1 ATS versus a team with a winning record and 3-11-3 ATS in their last 17 conference games and are 0-3-1 ATS in their last four overall. . .

The Over/Under is set at 61 and Florida State is not a team good enough to blow out teams that are well coached.

The Pick: Louisville +6.5