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Big Al's Daily Angle: MLB Previews and Odds - 09/20/2022

by Big Al Staff

Tuesday, Sep 20, 2022

The Tuesday sports card features action in MLB.Major League Baseball has 16 games on its schedule. The Arizona Diamondbacks play at Los Angeles against the Dodgers at 3:10 PM ET in the opening game of their doubleheader. Three more MLB games throw out the first pitch at 6:40 PM ET. The Miami Marlins are at home against the Chicago Cubs. Pablo Lopez takes the ball for the Marlins to pitch against Zach Davies for the Cubs. Miami is a -150 money line favorite, with the total set at 7 (all odds from DraftKings). The Boston Red Sox travel to Cincinnati to play the Reds. The Red Sox turn to Brayan Bello to pitch against the Reds’ Nick Lodolo. Boston is a -120 money line road favorite with an over/under of 8.5. The Tampa Bay Rays host the Houston Astros on TBS. Shane McClanahan takes the ball for the Rays to battle against Cristian Javier for the Astros. Tampa Bay is a -135 money line favorite with a total of 6.5. The Toronto Blue Jays visit Philadelphia to play the Phillies at 6:45 PM ET. The Blue Jays turn to Ross Stripling to pitch against the Phillies’ Kyle Gibson. Toronto is a -120 money line road favorite with an over/under of 8.5. The New York Yankees host the Pittsburgh Pirates at 7:05 PM ET. Nestor Cortes, Jr. takes the ball for the Yankees against a starting pitcher yet to be named by the Pirates. The Baltimore Orioles play at home against the Detroit Tigers. The Orioles turn to Austin Voth in their starting rotation to pitch against the Tigers’ Joey Wentz. Baltimore is a -200 money line favorite with a total of 8.5. The Atlanta Braves are at home against the Washington Nationals at 7:20 PM ET. Charlie Morton takes the mound for the Braves to battle against the Nationals’ Patrick Corbin. Atlanta is a -315 money line favorite with an over/under of 8.5. The New York Mets travel to Milwaukee to play the Brewers at 7:40 PM ET. The Mets tap Jacob DeGrom to pitch against the Brewers’ Aaron Ashby. The Los Angeles Angels play at Texas against the Rangers at 8:05 PM ET. Patrick Sandoval takes the ball for the Angels to pitch against Cole Ragans for the Rangers. Los Angeles is a -115 money line road favorite with a total of 9. Two games start at 8:10 PM ET. The Minnesota Twins visit the Kansas City Royals. The Twins tap Dylan Bundy to pitch against the Royals’ Zack Greinke. Minnesota is a -135 money line road favorite with a total of 9. The Cleveland Guardians play in Chicago against the White Sox. Aaron Civale pitches for the Guardians against a starting pitcher yet to be named for the White Sox. The San Francisco Giants travel to Colorado against the Rockies at 8:40 PM ET. The Giants turn to Carlos Rodon to pitch against the Rockies’ Kyle Freeland. San Francisco is a -150 money line road favorite with an over/under of 10. Two MLB games begin at 9:40 PM ET. The San Diego Padres host the St. Louis Cardinals. Mike Clevinger takes the ball for the Padres against Adam Wainwright for the Cardinals. San Diego is a -120 money line favorite with a total of 7.5. The Seattle Mariners play at Oakland against the A’s. The Mariners turn to Luis Castillo in their starting rotation against the A’s J.P. Sears. Seattle is a -210 money line road favorite with an over/under of 7. The Arizona Diamondbacks play in Los Angeles against the Dodgers in the second game of their doubleheader at 10:10 PM ET. Drey Jameson pitches for the Diamondbacks against Tyler Anderson for the Dodgers. 

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NCAAF Inside the Boxscores Week 3 (Part 1)

by Matt Fargo

Monday, Sep 19, 2022

Inside the Boxscores is a weekly feature from Matt Fargo that has been widely recognized as one of the best summations in college football. He takes an in-depth look at each game and pulls out the most pertinent information that will help you handicap games in the future. College football is filled with quirky plays, misleading scores and surprise endings. Fargo takes you inside the action. Florida St. 35, Louisville 31Florida St. made a quarterback change after an injury to Jordan Travis in the second quarter and after a slow start Tate Rodemaker was clutch late. He managed just 12 yards of offense in two series and threw an interception in the first half but in the second half, he led them on three touchdown drives of 75 yards. The Seminoles opened the scoring after forcing a punt and going 61 yards for a touchdown and after spotting Louisville a pair of touchdowns, the Seminoles tied the game and eventually fell down another touchdown at halftime. The defense came on strong in the second half also as Florida St. held Louisville to 10 points and just 1-6 on third down. Louisville outgained Florida St. 495-455 but ran 14 more plays. Wyoming 17, Air Force 14Wyoming pulled off the upset as it was able to keep the Air Force rushing game in check. The Falcons entered the game ranked No. 1 in rushing offense with 508.5 ypg but were held to just 171 yards on 40 carries (4.3 ypc). Overall, the Cowboys outgained Air Force 342-272 and they were at their best in the first half as they held to Falcons to only 87 total yards while putting up 183 yards of offense to take a 10-0 lead. Air Force took the second half opening kickoff and drove 75 yards to pull to within three points and after forcing a punt, took the lead following an 80-yard touchdown drive. The Cowboys took the ensuing kickoff and went 75 yards for the game-winning score. Air Force had 0 penalties while Wyoming had only 3. Michigan 59, Connecticut 0Michigan dominated throughout the entire game as it outgained the Huskies 465-110 and it scored its first touchdown after only two minutes and never looked back. The Wolverines scored on nine of their first 12 possessions as they were forced to punt only twice while also missing a field goal. Connecticut did not cross midfield until late in the second quarter as it got to the Michigan 43-yard line but turned it over on downs and it never got into Wolverines territory again the rest of the game. Michigan had 26 first downs compared to only 6 for the Huskies and won the yards per play average 6.7 to 2.1 thanks mostly to an efficient passing game where they were 21-26 and averaged 13.0 yards per completion. Cincinnati 38, Miami Ohio 17Miami Ohio took the opening kickoff and went 75 yards to take a 7-0 lead and then the defense forced a fumble which set up a short field that resulted in a field goal. Cincinnati cut it to three points following an 80-yard touchdown drive but Miami was able to force another fumble and recovered it at the Bearcats 20-yard line to set up a three-play touchdown drive. Cincinnati scored on three of its next four possessions to take a lead into halftime as the defense continued its strong play. Miami did not score the rest of the way as it had only 83 total yards in its final nine possessions and was outgained 478-183. The RedHawks did not convert a third down until the fourth quarter and went 1-11 overall. Baylor 42, Texas St. 7The Bears went down the field 75 yards on the first possession of the game to take a 7-0 lead and then after Texas St. went down to the Baylor 31-yardline, the Bears came up with a fourth down stop and went 69 yards to take a two-touchdown lead. The Bobcats were again stuffed on fourth down, this time at the Baylor four-yard line but did string together a 54-yard, five-play drive to cut it to 14-7 but the Bears took over for good. Texas St. had just 116 total yards over its final eight possessions while the Baylor offense scored in four of its last eight possessions but committed three turnovers as well. The Bears outgained Texas St. 501-268 including 293 (7.9 ypc) to 82 (2.4 ypc) on the ground. Oklahoma 49, Nebraska 14The post Scott Frost era got off to a good start early for Nebraska as it forced a three-and-out to open the game and went 77 yards in six plays to take a 7-0 lead but the Sooners took the ensuing kickoff 75 yards in five plays to tie the game. That was the first of seven unanswered touchdowns for Oklahoma before the Huskers scored a garbage touchdown late. Both teams were balanced on offense but the Sooners were more explosive in both facets as they outgained Nebraska 580-327 and won the yard per play average 6.9 to 4.3. Oklahoma rushed for 312 yards on 54 carries (5.8 ypc) while holding the Huskers to 163 yards on 45 carries (3.6 ypc) and the defense held Nebraska to 6-19 on third and fourth down. Georgia 48, South Carolina 7South Carolina was forced to punt on its first possession and Georgia went 82 yards in 10 plays to take a 7-0 lead and the rout was on. The Bulldogs scored in eight of its first nine possessions as they were forced to punt midway through the second quarter and punted only twice the entire game. Georgia outgained the Gamecocks 547-306 while having an 8.4 to 4.8 yards per play advantage. South Carolina entered Bulldogs territory four times in its first 10 possessions but threw two interceptions, punted once and turned it over on downs in the other one. The Gamecocks only score came with 53 seconds left in the game as over 35 percent of their total offense came in garbage time in the fourth quarter. Indiana 33, Western Kentucky 30Indiana opened the scoring with a field goal and eventually took a 10-7 lead but Western Kentucky went ahead early in the second quarter and took a 17-10 lead into halftime. The Hoosiers had to play catchup the rest of the way as they never led until the final gun. Down 30-22 with 3:46 left in regulation, Indiana went 75 yards in seven plays and scored with 47 second left while tacking on the two-point conversion to send the game into overtime where the Hoosiers blocked a field goal and made the winning kick from 51 yards four plays later. The Hilltoppers outgained Indiana 545-484 but had two costly turnovers, one deep in Indiana territory and one deep in their own territory that led to 10 Hoosiers points. Syracuse 32, Purdue 29A defensive battle flipped in the fourth quarter as after there were 12 points combined in the first half, Syracuse and Purdue combined for 42 points in the final 15 minutes. The Boilermakers took a six-point lead into halftime as they held the Syracuse offense to just 134 total yards and a field goal in the first half. There were five lead changes in the second half and the Orange looked to have to themselves in position to win the game following an interception return for a touchdown for a 25-15 lead with just over eight minutes left in the game but Purdue put together two touchdown drives to take the lead before Syracuse won the game with seven seconds left. Purdue outgained Syracuse 485-306 and went 10-17 on third down. Coastal Carolina 38, Buffalo 26Buffalo recovered a fumble on the first play of the game but had to settle for a 36-yard field goal. The Bulls forced another fumble four plays later but they fumbled it right back after three plays and Coastal Carolina went 43 yards in four plays to take a 7-3 lead. Buffalo was able to get into Chanticleers territory in its next three possessions but had to settle for two field goals and after giving the lead back again, the Bulls went 80 yards right before the half to take a two-point lead into the break. Coastal Carolina retook the lead for a good on a fumble recovery for a touchdown as it outscored Buffalo 21-7 in the fourth quarter. The Chanticleers outgained the Bulls 504-337 including 221-59 on the ground (7.9 ypc to 1.3 ypc). UCLA 32, South Alabama 31UCLA survived a home scare as it won by a point on a field goal as time expired. The Bruins picked off a pass four plays into the game but had to settle for a field goal and despite 129 yards in its first three possessions, UCLA managed only two field goals and eventually fell behind 17-6. A late first half touchdown and an early second half touchdown gave the Bruins a 23-17 lead but the Jaguars countered with a pair of touchdowns to regain the lead. They had a chance to extend the lead but did not convert a fake field goal and the Bruins went 61 yards in 10 plays for the game-winning score. UCLA outgained the Jaguars 407-399 as it ran only three more plays and had just one more first down. Rutgers 16, Temple 14After both teams punted on their opening possessions, Temple took its second possession 73 yards to take a 7-0 lead. Rutgers got onto the scoreboard late in the first quarter with a field goal and then took its first lead after retuning an interception 43 yards for a touchdown. The Scarlet Knights tacked on a pair of field goals to take a nine-point lead into the fourth quarter before the Owls got to within two points just two plays later after a 47-yard touchdown pass with 14:15 remaining but they got the ball back only one other time and failed on fourth down. Rutgers was outgained 264-201 and it averaged only 3.5 yards per play as the only turnover of the game proved to be the difference. Iowa St. 43, Ohio 10Iowa St. started the game by going 69 yards in 11 plays and scored the first 24 points of the game as it was never contested. The Cyclones eventually built a 37-3 lead as the defense held the Bobcats to a field goal, three turnovers and four punts in their first eight possessions. Iowa St. outgained Ohio 463-233 including 163 yards rushing on 32 carries (5.1 ypc) to 24 rushing yards on 22 carries (1.1 ypc). Overall, the Cyclones forced four turnovers that led to 20 points with the four drives needing only 75 total yards. Ohio was just 2-13 on third down and had only 12 first downs while getting sacked four times. The Iowa St. offense did have to settle four three field goals as it went only 5-14 on third down. Virginia 16, Old Dominion 14Old Dominion took its first lead of the game on an 80-yard touchdown drive with just 1:01 remaining in the game but a long kickoff return led to a 56-yard drive that set up the game-winning 26-yard field goal for Virginia as time expired. The Cavaliers jumped out to a 10-0 lead before Old Dominion forced two straight fumbles and turned the second one into a touchdown following a 64-yard drive. Virginia tacked on another field goal for a six-point lead and missed another one before the game winner. Virginia outgained the Monarchs 513-324 but managed only 16 points despite getting into Old Dominion territory nine times as they fumbled three times with 173 yards of offense lost with those. Notre Dame 24, California 17After a scoreless first quarter, California forced a fumble early in the second quarter and went 33 yards in four plays to take a 7-0 lead. Notre Dame returned the ensuing kickoff 40 yards and went 60 yards in in 10 plays to tie the game at 7-7 but the Golden Bears got the lead back with a field goal to take a three-point lead into the half. The Irish opened the second half with another 60-yard touchdown drive before California once again flipped the score and after a field goal, the Irish took the lead for good with 9:16 left. Notre Dame recovered a fumble and took it the distance for a possible 14-point lead but was called back. Notre Dame outgained the Golden Bears 297-296 with California having an 18-17 first down edge. UNLV 58, North Texas 27UNLV went 65 yards on its first possession to take a 7-0 lead but the Mean Green returned the ensuing kickoff 99 yards to knot the game at 7-7. The Rebels blocked a punt on the first North Texas offensive possession which rolled out of the endzone for a safety and after North Texas took the lead with a field goal, UNLV scored a pair of touchdowns on consecutive drives to take a 13-point lead. North Texas scored the final 10 points of the first half and then the two teams exchanged touchdowns before the Rebels took over, outscoring the Mean Green 28-0 the rest of the way. UNLV outgained North Texas 576-474 but had the ball for over 17 minutes more and ran nine more plays. Tulane 17, Kansas St. 10Tulane took its third possession 91 yards in nine plays to take a 7-0 lead but the Wildcats were able to take a 10-7 lead into halftime as the defense forced four punts and grabbed an interception in the other Five Green Wave possessions. The Tulane defense ruled in the second half as it shut out the Wildcats, forcing four punts and stopping Kansas St. on fourth down three times. The Green Wave had two scoring drives of 53 and 52 yards after two of those fourth down stops to score the final 10 points. Both teams had 336 total yards, Tulane had an 18-15 first down edge and both punted seven times as third down conversions were hard to come by as Tulane was 1-12 while Kansas St. was 2-15. UAB 35, Georgia Southern 21The Blazers scored touchdowns in three of their first four possessions but Georgia Southern would not go away lightly as it scored a late first half touchdown and added a late third quarter touchdown to cut the deficit to seven points. UAB opened the fourth quarter with a 71-yard touchdown drive but the Eagles countered with a 75-yard drive for a touchdown on their next possession. Georgia Southern then forced a three and out but threw an interception four plays into the drive in their own territory and the Blazers capped it with a 33-yard touchdown drive. The Eagles won the yardage battle 418-413 but ran 20 more plays including 30 more passes and were outgained 6.6 to 5.0 yards per play. Appalachian St. 32, Troy 28It was another wild game for Appalachian St. and it was a back-and-forth battle all day. The Mountaineers opened the scoring after grabbing a Troy interception on the first play of the game from scrimmage and went 33 yards in three plays to take a 7-0 lead. The Trojans came back on their next possession as they went 75 yards to tie the game and then took a touchdown lead on two different occasions and took a 21-14 lead into halftime. The Mountaineers took a three-point lead but Troy retook the lead and then took a safety in its own end zone to keep a two-point lead but Appalachian St. tossed a 53-yard Hail Mary as time expired to win the game. The Mountaineers outgained the Trojans 456-359.  Oregon 41, BYU 20The Ducks defense opened the game with a fourth down stop at their own 36-yard line and took the ball 64 yards in four plays to take an early 7-0 lead. Trailing 10-0, BYU closed the first quarter with a 75-yard, 10-play drive and then Oregon took over. The Ducks scored touchdowns on the next four possession, adding to six scoring drives in the first six possessions of the game, to go ahead 38-7 midway through the third quarter. The Cougars added a pair of touchdowns in the final quarter to make it more respectable. Oregon only outgained BYU 439-366 but the defense made four stops on fourth down, taking away 145 yards of Cougars offense that resulted in nothing. Conversely, Oregon was 3-3 on fourth down. Minnesota 49, Colorado 7Minnesota closed non-conference action with a third straight blowout as the Gophers scored early and often, building a 35-0 lead at halftime that was extended to 49-0 with most of the starters coming out midway through the second half. Minnesota outgained the Buffaloes 500-226 that included a 420-90 yardage edge through the first three quarters so it was a complete domination when the starters went against each other. The Gophers passing offense was the only below average aspect of the game for them as they were only 12-20 with an interception but did have three passing touchdowns to make it a little more respectable and overall Minnesota was 13-15 on third down while Colorado was 1-12. Penn St. 41, Auburn 12It was a competitive game early on as Auburn got on the board first with a field goal midway through the first quarter but Penn St. responded with a 75-yard touchdown drive to take a lead it would never give up. The Tigers closed to within one point on another field goal and Penn St. responded again with another long touchdown drive to take an eight-point lead into halftime. The Nittany Lions took over in the second half as they outscored Auburn 17-0 in the third quarter and 27-6 in the entire second half, allowing a garbage touchdown in the fourth quarter. Penn St. outgained the Tigers 477-415 as it allowed 296 yards passing but the defense stepped up by forcing four turnovers and sacking Auburn six times. Mississippi 42, Georgia Tech 0It was not a deceiving final score as Mississippi dominated from start to finish, opening the game with a five-play, 74-yard scoring drive that only took 1:21 off the clock. The Rebels scored a rushing touchdown in six of nine possessions through three quarters to build its 42-0 lead with the only blemishes being one punt, a missed field goal and an interception, the latter two resulting in 104 yards of their 547 yards of total offense and getting nothing. The defense pitched a shutout for the first time in eight years as Mississippi allowed only 214 yards and registered seven sacks. The Rebels outgained Georgia Tech on the ground with 316 yards on 62 carries (5.1 ypc) to 53 yards on 34 carries (1.6 ypc). Wisconsin 66, New Mexico St. 7Wisconsin bounced back from a home loss last week as it dominated the Aggies, outgaining them 595-242 and more than double the yards per play average at 9.0 to 3.7. The Badgers allowed only 92 total yards in the first half with 82 of those coming on one drive that resulted in a missed field goal by New Mexico St. right before the half. 112 of the Aggies yards came on their final two possessions so there was nowhere to go besides those three positive drives. Wisconsin punted only three times and of its nine touchdown drives, seven were on five plays or less as it faced only six third downs, converting two of those, while New Mexico St. was only 4-15 on its third down conversion attempts. 

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Big Al's Daily Angle: NFL and MLB Previews and Odds - 09/19/2022

by Big Al Staff

Monday, Sep 19, 2022

The Monday sports card features action in NFL and MLB.The second week in the National Football League concludes with two games. The Buffalo Bills host the Tennessee Titans on ESPN at 7:15 PM ET. The Bills come off a 31-10 victory in Los Angeles on the road against the Rams in the opening game of the regular season as a 1-point favorite on September 8th. The Titans got upset, 21-20, at home to Tennessee as a 5.5-point favorite last Sunday. This game is a rematch of Tennessee's 34-31 upset victory at home as a 6-point underdog last season on October 18th. Buffalo is a 10-point favorite, with the total set at 47.5 (all odds from DraftKings). The Philadelphia Phillies play at home against the Minnesota Vikings on ABC at 8:30 PM ET. The Eagles defeated the Lions in Detroit last week, 38-35, as a 6-point favorite. The Vikings beat Green Bay, 23-7, as a 2.5-point favorite last Sunday. Philadelphia is a 2.5-point favorite with an over/under of 50.Major League Baseball has nine games on its schedule. The Cleveland Guardians are at home against the Minnesota Twins at 1:10 PM ET. Cal Quantrill takes the ball for the Guardians to pitch against Sonny Gray for the Twins. Cleveland is a -115 money line favorite with a total of 7.5. The Seattle Mariners travel to Los Angeles to play the Angels at 4:07 PM ET. The Mariners turn to Logan Gilbert to pitch against the Angels’ Jose Suarez. Seattle is a -145 money line road favorite with an over/under of 7.5. Two more MLB games throw out the first pitch at 6:40 PM ET. Miami hosts Chicago with Edward Cabrera pitching for the Marlins against Wade Miley for the Cubs. The Marlins are a -135 money line favorite with a total of 7. Tampa Bay plays at home against Houston with the Rays tapping Drew Rasmussen against the Astros’ Luis Garcia. The Rays are a -120 money line favorite with an over/under of 7. The Baltimore Orioles are at home against the Detroit Tigers at 7:05 PM ET. Tyler Wells pitches for the Orioles against Tyler Alexander for the Tigers. Baltimore is a -190 money line favorite with a total of 8.The Atlanta Braves host the Washington Nationals at 7:20 PM ET. The Braves send Kyle Wright to the mound to pitch against the Nationals’ Cory Abbott. Atlanta is a -330 money line favorite with an over/under of 8.5. The New York Mets travel to Milwaukee to play the Brewers at 7:40 PM ET. Max Scherzer takes the ball for the Mets to battle against Corbin Burnes for the Brewers. Both teams are priced at -110 with a total of 7. The Colorado Rockies play at home against the San Francisco Giants at 8:40 PM ET. The Rockies turn to Chad Kuhl to pitch against the Giants’ Jakob Junis. Colorado is a -120 money line road favorite with an over/under of 11.5. The Arizona Diamondbacks play in Los Angeles against the Dodgers at 8:40 PM ET. Neither team has named their starting pitcher.

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Guess What Other Patriots' Quarterback Used to Struggle in Miami?

by Hollywood Sports

Sunday, Sep 18, 2022

The critics were quick to pounce on Bill Belichick after the Patriots lost their opening week game in Miami to the Dolphins, 20-7. The most creative observations came from those who admitted that it is foolhardy to make conclusions from one game, but “let’s do it anyways!” It takes a certain level of bravery to acknowledge that is it Overreaction Monday after the first Sunday of the regular season to only still march forward. The Prior Beliefs must always be validated.It was a disappointing effort — and the critics of Bill Belichick were quick to use this first game as evidence that he is past his prime. But it is not as if Belichick’s teams have not had a history of flat efforts this century despite having Tom Brady as his quarterback for most of those games. Brady, the G.O.A.T and much better than Mac Jones, lost ten of his eighteen starts on the road against the Dolphins when playing for the Patriots. In those ten losses, New England scored just 17.5 Points-Per-Game and averaged 293.5 total Yards-Per-Game. In Brady’s trip to Miami in 2006, the Dolphins shut him out while holding him to 189 total yards. For the record, the Patriots finished 12-4 that season before losing to Peyton Manning’s Indianapolis Colts in the AFC Championship Game. So, the G.O.A.T. was able to lead his team to rebound. Look, I’m not a fan of Matt Patricia — but his impact as the team’s offensive coordinator is overblown. Belichick started as a wide receiver’s coach in the 70s. Los Angeles Rams defensive coordinator Raheem Morris coached the offensive side of the ball when on the Atlanta Falcons’ staff during the Dan Quinn era. Coaches like Belichick simply think that “coaching is coaching” — and that a defensive coach moving to the other side of the ball is akin to a prosecutor moving into private practice as a defense attorney. This narrative is exposing some interesting assumptions about the role and responsibility of an offensive coordinator. Some idealize it at is a Platonic ideal of drawing up the perfect play in the sand. While Andy Reid, Mike Shanahan, and Sean McVay may draw up great plays, that is not the only job description. And, dare I say it, stealing great plays from other coaches is a perfectly acceptable tactic. That is something I suspect Patricia can be just fine at. Not every offensive coordinator has to reinvent the wheel to get “oohs” and “ahhs” on the Twitter validation machine. Preparing your offensive players to execute the game plan designed to expose flaws in your opponent’s defense seems closer to the mission statement of an offensive coordinator. It was simply too early to pass judgment on the Patriots after Week One — especially when Belichick has declared on many occasions that he does not finish the installation of the offense each season until the end of September. When in doubt, don’t overreact. If a McVay acolyte made the playoffs with a rookie quarterback last year, let’s just say they would be appreciated differently. And Jones got injured in that opening game in Miami. Matthew Stafford and Russell Wilson seem to get the benefit of the doubt if it is discovered later that they were injured during the game. Perhaps they earned that right to have that be baked in the rules. But it is interesting to observe that often the only consistency when applying these rules is Confirming the Priors. Anyways, we won our AFC Game of the Month on New England (although some may have pushed if they got the play in late at -3). On to Monday …Best of luck — Frank.

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Big Al's Daily Angle: MLB, NFL and EPL Previews and Odds - 09/18/2022

by Big Al Staff

Sunday, Sep 18, 2022

The Sunday sports card features action in NFL, MLB, and EPL.The second week in the National Football League continues with 13 games. Seven games kick off at 1 PM ET. The Baltimore Ravens host the Miami Dolphins as a 3.5-point favorite ,with the total set at 44.5 (all odds from DraftKings unless indicated otherwise). The Cleveland Browns play at home against the New York Jets as a 6.5-point favorite with an over/under of 39. The Detroit Lions are at home against the Washington Commanders as a 1-point favorite with a total of 48.5. The Indianapolis Colts visit Jacksonville to play the Jaguars as a 3-point road favorite with an over/under of 45. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are at New Orleans as a 2.5-point favorite with a total of 44. The New York Giants play at home against the Carolina Panthers as a 2-point favorite with an over/under of 43.5. The New England Patriots travel to Pittsburgh to play the Steelers as a 2.5-point road favorite with a total of 40. Two NFL games start at 4:05 PM ET. The Los Angeles Rams are at home against the Atlanta Falcons as a 10-point favorite with an over/under of 46.5. The San Francisco 49ers host the Seattle Seahawks as a 9-point favorite with a total of 40.5. Three more games in the NFL begin at 4:25 PM ET. The Cincinnati Bengals visit Dallas to play the Cowboys as a 7-point road favorite with an over/under of 42. The Denver Broncos are at home against the Houston Texans as a 10-point favorite with a total of 45. The Las Vegas Raiders play at home against the Cardinals as a 5-point favorite with an over/under of 51.5. The Green Bay Packers host the Chicago Bears on NBC and Peacock for Sunday Night Football at 8:20 PM ET. The Packers are a 10-point favorite with a total of 41.5. Major League Baseball has 15 games on its schedule. The Chicago White Sox travel to Detroit to play the Tigers at 12:10 PM ET as a -165 money line road favorite with an over/under of 8. The Tampa Bay Rays play at home against the Texas Rangers at 1:10 PM ET as a -200 money line favorite with a total of 7. Three more MLB games begin at 1:35 PM ET. The Atlanta Braves are at home against the Philadelphia Phillies as a -255 money line favorite with an over/under of 7.5. The Miami Marlins play at Washington against the Nationals as a -180 money line road favorite with a total of 7.5. The Boston Red Sox host the Kansas City Royals as a -195 money line favorite with an over/under of 10. The Toronto Blue Jays are at home against the Baltimore Orioles as a -200 money line favorite with a total of 8. Two MLB games start at 1:40 PM ET. The Minnesota Twins play at Cleveland against the Guardians with both teams priced at -110 with an over/under of 8. The New York Mets play at home against the Pittsburgh Pirates as a -450 money line favorite with a total of 6.5. Two more MLB games begin at 2:10 PM ET. The Houston Astros host the Oakland A’s as a -360 money line favorite with an over/under of 7.5. The New York Yankees visit Milwaukee to play the Brewers as a -175 money line road favorite with a total of 7.5. The St. Louis Cardinals are at home against the Cincinnati Reds at 2:15 PM ET as a -275 money line favorite with an over/under of 8. The Chicago Cubs play at home against the Colorado Rockies at 2:20 PM ET as a -130 money line favorite.The Seattle Mariners travel to Los Angeles to play the Angels at 4:07 PM ET as a -115 money line road favorite with a total of 8.5. The San Diego Padres are at Arizona to play the Cardinals at 4:10 PM ET as a -150 money line road favorite with an over/under of 8.5. The Los Angeles Dodgers play at San Francisco against the Giants on ESPN for Sunday Night Baseball at 7:08 PM ET. The Dodgers are a -170 money line road favorite with a total of 8. Matchweek 8 in the English Premier League concludes with two matches on the USA Network. Arsenal visits Brentford at 7 AM ET as a -0.5 goal line road favorite at BetMGM with an over/under of 3. West Ham United plays at Everton at 9:15 PM ET in a pick ‘em match with a total of 2.5. 

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Big Al's Daily Angle: NCAAF, MLB, CFL and EPL Previews and Odds - 09/17/2022

by Big Al Staff

Saturday, Sep 17, 2022

The Saturday sports card features action in NCAAF, MLB, CFL, and EPL.The third week of the college football season continues with 48 games between FBS opponents. Six games on national television kicks off at Noon ET. Georgia visits South Carolina on ESPN as an 11-point road favorite with the total set at 65.5 (all odds from DraftKings unless indicated otherwise). Baylor hosts Texas State on FS1 as a 30-point favorite with an over/under of 53. Michigan plays at home against Connecticut on ABC as a 47.5-point favorite with a total of 58.5. Syracuse is at home against Purdue on ESPN2 as a 1.5-point favorite with an over/under of 60. Cincinnati plays at Miami (Ohio) on ESPNU as a 23-point road favorite with a total of 50.5. Oklahoma travels to Nebraska on Fox as an 11-point road favorite with an over/under of 65.5. Notre Dame hosts California on NBC and Peacock at 2:30 PM ET as a 12.5-point favorite with an over/under of 40.5. Five college football games on national television start at 3:30 PM ET. Penn State plays at Auburn on CBS as a 2.5-point road favorite with a total of 48. Mississippi visits Georgia Tech on ABC as a 17-point road favorite with an over/under of 63.5. Northern Illinois is at home against Vanderbilt on the CBS Sports Network as a 2.5-point favorite with a total of 59. Minnesota hosts Colorado on ESPN2 as a 28-point favorite with an over/under of 47. Oregon plays at home against BYU as a 3.5-point favorite with a total of 58. Houston is at home against Kansas on ESPNU at 4 PM ET as an 8-point favorite with an over/under of 58. Marshall plays at Bowling Green on the NFL Network at 5 PM ET as a 16.5-point road favorite with a total of 50.5. Mississippi State travels to LSU on ESPN at 6 PM ET as a 3-point road favorite with a total of 52.5. Two nationally-televised college football games begin at 7 PM ET. North Carolina State plays at home against Texas Tech on ESPN2 as a 10.5-point favorite with an over/under of 56. Ohio State hosts Toledo on Fox as a 31-point favorite with a total of 62.5. Four more NCAAF games start at 7:30 PM ET. Maryland is at home against SMU on FS1 as a 2.5-point favorite with an over/under of 72.5. Pittsburgh visits Western Michigan on ESPNU as a 10.5-point road favorite with a total of 48. Central Florida plays at Florida Atlantic on the CBS Sports Network as a 7.5-point road favorite with an over/under of 62. Washington is at home against Michigan State on ABC as a 3.5-point favorite with a total of 56.5. Texas A&M hosts Miami (Florida) on ESPN at 9 PM ET as a 6-point favorite with an over/under of 45. Utah plays at home against San Diego State on ESPN2 at 10 PM ET as a 21-point favorite with a total of 48.5. USC is at home against Fresno State on Fox as an 11-point favorite with an over/under of 72. Major League Baseball has 17 games on its schedule. The Minnesota Twins play at Cleveland against the Guardians at 1:10 PM ET in the opening game of their doubleheader. The Cincinnati Reds are in St. Louis to play the Cardinals at 1:15 PM ET in the opening game of their doubleheader. The Chicago Cubs host the Colorado Rockies at 2:20 PM ET as a -140 money line favorite. The Toronto Blue Jays play at home against the Baltimore Orioles at 3:07 PM ET as a -165 money line favorite with a total of 8.5. The Miami Marlins visit Washington to play the Nationals at 4:05 PM ET as a -125 money line road favorite with an over/under of 7.5. The Boston Red Sox host the Kansas City Royals at 4:10 PM ET as a -155 money line favorite with a total of 9. Two more MLB games throw out the first pitch at 6:10 PM ET. The Chicago White Sox play on the road in Detroit against the Tigers as a -155 money line road favorite with an over/under of 8. The Texas Rangers are at Tampa Bay against the Rays. Four MLB games start at 7:10 PM ET. The Houston Astros host the Oakland A’s as a -275 money line favorite with a total of 8. The Twins play on the road against the Guardians in the second game of their doubleheader. The New York Yankees play at Milwaukee against the Mariners with both teams priced at -110 with an over/under of 7.5. The New York Mets are at home against the Pittsburgh Pirates as a -305 money line favorite with a total of 8. The Reds are on the road against the Cardinals at 7:15 PM ET in the second game of their doubleheader. The Philadelphia Phillies play at Atlanta against the Braves at 7:20 PM ET with both teams priced at -110 with an over/under of 8. The San Diego Padres travel to Arizona to play the Diamondbacks at 8:10 PM ET, with both teams priced at -110 with a total of 7. The Los Angeles Dodgers play at San Francisco against the Giants at 9:05 PM ET. The Seattle Mariners are in Los Angeles to play the Angels at 9:07 PM ET, with both teams priced as a -110 money line favorite with an over/under of 7. Week 15 in the Canadian Football League concludes with two games. The Winnipeg Blue Bombers visit Hamilton to play the Tiger-Cats at 4 PM ET as a 7.5-point road favorite with a total of 46.5. The Calgary Stampeders play at home against the British Columbia Lions at 7 PM ET as a 6.5-point favorite with an over/under of 52.5. Matchweek 8 in the English Premier League continues with three matches. Manchester City travels to Wolverhampton on the USA Network at 7:30 AM ET as a -1.5 goal line road favorite with a total of 3. Newcastle United hosts Bournemouth on the USA Network at 10 AM ET as a -1 goal line favorite with a total of 2.5. Tottenham plays at home against Leicester City on NBC at 12:30 PM ET as a -1 goal line favorite with an over/under of 3.

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NFL Game Two Hungry Underdog

by Tom Stryker

Friday, Sep 16, 2022

Getting out of the gate in the NFL can be tricky.  Free agency has changed the game and, at times, pro teams that were giant killers a year ago can take on a completely different DNA the next season. Thankfully, with the help of my pro football database, the same one that was featured in the December 13th, 2010, issue of the ESPN Insider magazine, I’ve been able to isolate and profit from a number of early season technical situations that have performed very well. This week’s NFL system focuses on teams coming off a straight up loss in game one.  When you only play a 17-game season, each week is important.  In my opinion, the season opener carries a little more weight.  A win can set the tone for the entire year and, unfortunately, a loss can do the same.  While banging away at my pro database and researching teams off losses in their first contest of the season, I stumbled across one profitable situation that really stood the test of time.  Take a look. Since 1980, PLAY ON any game two NFL road underdog priced competitively at +7 or less provided they enter off a straight up loss and their opponent is playing their second game of the season and off a straight up loss as well.  42-Year ATS Record = 50-28-2 ATS for 64.1 percent  This Week’s Play = ARIZONA The Cardinals make the trek to Sin City hungry off their embarrassing 44-21 home loss to the Chiefs and they’ll look to right the ship matched up against a Raiders group that returns home off a 24-19 road loss to the Chargers.  There is one tightener that can be added to this situation that really makes it pop.  If our “play on” side arrives off a blowout blemish of seven points or more, this system cruises to a money-making 33-15 ATS for 68.7 percent.  Arizona fell to Kansas City by 23 points and head coach Kliff Kingsbury and the boys fit this situation perfectly. The Redbirds will carry the freight as our NFL Game Two Hungry Underdog.  Good luck with Arizona.

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Big Al's Daily Angle: NCAAF, MLB and CFL Previews and Odds - 09/16/2022

by Big Al Staff

Friday, Sep 16, 2022

The Friday sports card features action in the NCAAF, MLB, and CFL.The third week of the college football season kicks off with two games. The Florida State Seminoles travel to Louisville to play the Cardinals on ESPN at 7:30 PM ET. The Seminoles return to the field after their 24-23 upset victory against LSU as a 4-point underdog on September 4th. The Cardinals upset Central Florida on the road as a 5.5-point underdog on Friday. Florida State is a 2.5-point road favorite, with the total set at 57 (all odds from DraftKings unless indicated otherwise). Air Force plays at Wyoming on the CBS Sports Network at 8 PM ET. The Falcons beat Colorado, 41-10, as a 17-point favorite last Saturday. The Cowboys won for the second straight time with a 33-10 victory against Northern Colorado as a 23.5-point favorite last week. Air Force is a 16.5-point road favorite with an over/under of 47. Major League Baseball has 15 games on its schedule. The Chicago Cubs host the Colorado Rockies at 2:20 PM ET as a -140 money line favorite. The Miami Marlins play at Washington to play the Nationals at 7:05 PM ET. The Baltimore Orioles visit Toronto to play the Blue Jays on Apple TV+ at 7:07 PM ET. Five MLB games throw out the first pitch at 7:10 PM ET. The Minnesota Twins play at Cleveland against the Guardians. The Chicago White Sox are Detroit against the Tigers as a -150 money line road favorite with a total of 7.5. The Tampa Bay Rays play at home against the Texas Rangers as a -145 money line favorite with an over/under of 7. The New York Mets are at home against the Pittsburgh Pirates as a -255 money line favorite with a total of 8. The Boston Red Sox host the Kansas City Royals as a -205 money line favorite with an over/under of 9.5 The Atlanta Braves play at home against the Philadelphia Phillies at 7:20 PM ET as a -180 money line favorite with a total of 7.5. Two more MLB games start at 8:10 PM ET. The Houston Astros are at home against the Oakland A’s as a -390 money line favorite with an over/under of 7.5. The New York Yankees play at Milwaukee against the Brewers as a -130 money line road favorite with a total of 8. The St. Louis Cardinals are at home against the Cincinnati Reds at 8:15 PM ET as a -275 money line favorite with an over/under of 8.5. The Seattle Mariners travel to Los Angeles to play the Angels at 9:38 PM ET as a -155 money line road favorite with a total of 8. The San Diego Padres play at Arizona to play the Diamondbacks at 9:40 PM ET as a -175 money line road favorite with an over/under of 8.5. The Los Angeles Dodgers are at San Francisco against the Giants on Apple TV+ at 10:15 PM ET as a -165 money line road favorite with a total of 7.5. Week 15 of the Canadian Football League begins with one game. The Saskatchewan Roughriders are at home against the Edmonton Eskimos at 9:30 PM ET as a 7-point favorite with an over/under of 50.

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Big Al's Daily Angle: MLB and NFL Previews and Odds - 09/15/2022

by Big Al Staff

Thursday, Sep 15, 2022

The Thursday sports card features action in the NFL and MLB.The second week in the National Football League kicks off with one game for Thursday Night Football. The Kansas City Chiefs host the Los Angeles Chargers on Amazon Prime at 8:15 PM ET. The Chiefs come off a 44-21 victory at Arizona as a 6.5-point favorite on Sunday. The Chargers beat Las Vegas, 24-19, as a 4.5-point favorite on Sunday. Kansas City is a 4-point favorite, with the total set at 54 (all odds from DraftKings). Major League Baseball has eight games on its schedule. The Chicago White Sox visit Cleveland to play the Guardians at 1:10 PM ET. The White Sox lost for the fourth time in a row yesterday with their 3-0 loss at home to Colorado. The Guardians are on a six-game winning streak after their 5-3 victory against the Los Angeles Angels on Wednesday. Lance Lynn gets the ball for Chicago to battle against Hunter Gaddis for the Guardians. The White Sox are a -150 money line road favorite with an over/under of 8. The Toronto Blue Jays play at home against the Tampa Bay Rays at 3:07 PM ET. The Blue Jays have won six of eight games after a 5-1 victory against the Rays yesterday. The Blue Jays lost for the fifth time in its last six games. Toronto turns to Kevin Gausman in their starting rotation to pitch against the Tampa Bay’s Shane McClanahan. The Blue Jays are a -140 money line favorite with a total of 7.5. The Philadelphia Phillies travel to Miami to play the Marlins at 6:40 PM ET. The Phillies won the for the fifth straight time with their 6-1 victory against the Marlins yesterday. Miami has lost five of their last six games. Noah Syndergaard gets the ball for Philadelphia to duel against Pablo Lopez for the Marlins. The Phillies are a -135 money line road favorite with an over/under of 7.5. Two MLB games throw out the first pitch at 7:20 PM ET. The Houston Astros host the Oakland A’s. The Astros are on a four-game winning streak after a 2-1 victory at Detroit on Wednesday. The A’s won for the second time in their last three games with an 8-7 win at Texas yesterday. Houston taps Lance McCullers, Jr. to pitch against Oakland’s James Kaprielian. The Astros are a -300 money line favorite with a total of 7.5. The New York Mets are at home against the Pittsburgh Pirates on Fox. The Mets are on a three-game losing streak after a 6-3 loss at home to the Chicago Cubs on Wednesday. The Pirates won for the fourth straight time yesterday with a 10-4 win against Cincinnati. Carlos Carrasco pitches for New York against J.T. Brubaker for Pittsburgh. The Mets are a -275 money line favorite with an over/under of 7.5. The Minnesota Twins play at home against the Kansas City Royals at 7:40 PM ET. The Twins won for the second-straight time with a 4-0 victory against the Royals on Wednesday. Minnesota turns to Dylan Bundy to pitch against Kansas City’s Daniel Lynch. The Twins are a -170 money line favorite with a total of 8.5. The St. Louis Cardinals host the Cincinnati Reds at 7:45 PM ET. The Cardinals won for the third time in their last four games with a 4-1 victory against Milwaukee on Wednesday. The Reds are on a six-game losing streak after its loss to the Pirates yesterday. Miles Mikolas takes the mound for St. Louis to pitch against Chase Anderson for the Reds. The Cardinals are a -265 money line favorite with an over/under of 8.5. The San Diego Padres visit Arizona to play the Diamondbacks at 9:40 PM ET. The Padres lost for the third time in the last four games with a 6-1 loss at Seattle on Wednesday. The Diamondbacks ended a two-game losing streak with a 5-3 victory in ten innings against the Los Angeles Dodgers yesterday. The Padres send Sean Manaea to the hill to pitch against the Diamondbacks Drey Jameson.

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Thursday Night Football Primer

by Vegas Writer

Wednesday, Sep 14, 2022

THE SKINNYEarly battle of AFC West powers, as the six-time defending division champion Kansas City Chiefs host the preseason favorites to dethrone them, the Los Angeles Chargers.It's a pivotal, early-season showdown that could matter down the road considering how tight the division is this season.Both teams are in after Week 1 victories, as the Chiefs went into Arizona to spank the Cardinals, 44-21, as Patrick Mahomes threw for 360 yards and five touchdowns for a 144.2 rating. It marked his sixth-career game with at least five touchdown passes. Running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire hauled in a career-high two touchdown passes while rookie running back Isiah Pacheco ran for his first-career touchdown.On defense, tackle Chris Jones registered his 11th-career forced fumble, and make note, he's tallied four sacks in his past two Thursday games. Defensive end Carlos Dunlap had a sack in his Chiefs debut and boasts 5.5 sacks in six career games against the Chargers. Linebacker Nick Bolton picked up where he left off in 2021, when he led all rookies with 112 tackles, by recording a team-high 10 tackles.The Chargers knocked off division -rival Las Vegas, beating the Raiders in Inglewood last week, 24-19. Quarterback Justin Herbert threw for 297 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions for a 129.4 rating. It was his ninth career game with at least three touchdown passes and no interceptions, tied with Mahomes for the most-ever by a player in his first three seasons. In four career games against Kansas City, Herbert has 13 touchdowns (10 passing, three rushing) and a 108.3 rating.On the other side of the ball, linebacker Khalil Mack led the Bolts with three sacks and had a forced fumble in his Chargers debut. Since entering the league in 2014, Mack ranks tied for second among all players with 24 forced fumbles. Linebacker Joey Bosa also registered a forced fumble against the Raiders and added 1.5 sacks. He posted a sack and forced a fumble in the Chargers' last meeting with Kansas City and aims for his fifth straight in primetime with a sack. Safety Derwin James tied for the team lead with six tackles last week, and also posted a sack. Cornerback Asante Samuel Jr. snagged his third-career interception. One of those three was in last year's Week 3 meeting in Kansas City.  The Chiefs are looking to begin 2-0 for the fifth time in the past six years, while the Chargers are aiming to win their first two games of a season for the first time since 2012.BETTING WISEChargers have failed to cover seven of their last 10 vs. AFC foes, and are mired in a 1-4 ATS skid against winning teams. That said, the road team has covered 17 of the last 22 meetings, and the Bolts have cashed seven of their last 10 against division foes.The Chargers have covered nine of their last 13 on Thursdays, and four of their last five on the road on TNF.The Bolts have covered four of their last six against AFC West foes on Thursday.Kansas City has covered six of its last seven at home, and 13 of its last 18 in the month of September. The Chiefs have shown a knack for falling flat after an offensive burst, as they're 5-12 ATS in their last 17 games after scoring more than 30 points in their last time out.The Chiefs have covered five of their last seven on Thursdays, but have split their last four at home on TNF.Kansas City has failed to cover five of their last eight against AFC West foes on Thursday.

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Big Al's Daily Angle: MLB and UEFA Champions League Previews and Odds - 09/14/2022

by Big Al Staff

Wednesday, Sep 14, 2022

The Wednesday sports card features action in MLB and the UEFA Champions League.Major League Baseball has 15 games on its schedule. The Cincinnati Reds host the Pittsburgh Pirates at 12:35 PM ET as a -155 money line favorite with the total set at 8 (all odds from DraftKings unless indicated otherwise). Two more MLB games throw out the first pitch at 1:10 PM ET. The Los Angeles Angels travel to Cleveland to play the Guardians. The Houston Astros play at Detroit against the Tigers as a -260 money line road favorite with an over/under of 8. The Chicago White Sox host the Colorado Rockies at 2:10 PM ET as a -240 money line favorite with a total of 7.5. The Atlanta Braves play at San Francisco against the Giants at 3:45 PM ET as a -115 money line road favorite with an over/under of 7.5. The Seattle Mariners are at home against the San Diego Padres at 4:10 PM ET as a -155 money line favorite with a total of 7.5. The Philadelphia Phillies travel to Miami to play the Marlins at 6:40 PM ET as a -130 money line road favorite with an over/under of 7.5. The Baltimore Orioles play at Washington against the Nationals at 7:05 PM ET as a -140 money line road favorite with a total of 8.5. The Toronto Blue Jays are at home against the Tampa Bay Rays at 7:07 PM ET as a -120 money line favorite with an over/under of 7.5. Two more MLB games start at 7:10 PM ET. The New York Yankees visit Boston to play the Red Sox as a -130 money line road favorite with a total of 9. The Chicago Cubs play at New York against the Mets. The Minnesota Twins host the Kansas City Royals at 7:40 PM ET as a -200 money line favorite with an over/under of 7.5. The Milwaukee Brewers play at St. Louis against the Cardinals on FS1 as a -120 money line road favorite with a total of 7. The Texas Rangers are at home against the Oakland A’s at 8:05 PM ET as a -155 money line favorite with an over/under of 8.5. The Los Angeles Dodgers are at Arizona to play the Diamondbacks at 9:40 PM ET. Matchday 2 in the UEFA Champions League concludes with nine group stage matches. Two matches start at 12:45 PM ET. AC Milan hosts Dinamo Zagreb as a -1.5 goal line favorite with a total of 3 (all soccer odds from BetMGM). Celtic visits Shakhtar Donetsk as a -0.5 goal line road favorite with an over/under of 2.5. Seven matches conclude the Champions League card at 3 PM ET. Chelsea plays at home against RB Salzburg as a -1.5 goal line favorite with a total of 3. Real Madrid is at home against RB Leipzig as a -1 goal line favorite with an over/under of 3. Manchester City hosts Borussia Dortmund as a -2 goal line favorite with a total of 3.5. Sevilla is at FC Copenhagen as a -0.5 goal line road favorite with an over/under of 2.5. Juventus plays at home against Benfica as a -0.5 goal line favorite with a total of 2.5. Paris Saint-Germain travels to Maccabi Haifa as a -2.5 goal line road favorite with an over/under of 3.5. Napoli plays on the road against the Rangers as a -0.5 goal line favorite with a total of 2.5.All nine Champions League matches are available on Paramount+. The CBS Sports Network’s “The Golazo Show” is an NFL Red Zone-inspired show that presents live updated highlights of all eight games. 

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NCAAF Inside the Boxscores Week 2 (Part 2)

by Matt Fargo

Tuesday, Sep 13, 2022

Inside the Boxscores is a weekly feature from Matt Fargo that has been widely recognized as one of the best summations in college football. He takes an in-depth look at each game and pulls out the most pertinent information that will help you handicap games in the future. College football is filled with quirky plays, misleading scores and surprise endings. Fargo takes you inside the action. Texas Tech 33, Houston 30Texas Tech dominated the first half with its defense as it took a 17-3 lead into halftime. The offense had three scoring drives of 65 or more yards but the other four first half possessions resulted in three punts that totaled 23 yards of offense and a missed field goal. Houston could get nothing going in the first half as it crossed midfield only three times and managed just one field goal. The Red Raiders were sloppy in the second half with three interceptions, one returned for a touchdown, and they needed a last second field goal to force overtime. Texas Tech outgained Houston 468-354 but it was deceiving as it ran 35 more plays which resulted in a 5.2 to 4.5 yards per play disadvantage. Middle Tennessee St. 34, Colorado St. 19Middle Tennessee St. bounced back with a big road win as it dominated from the start, jumping out to a 34-0 lead before Colorado St. made it look more respectable. The Blue Raiders returned an interception 32 yards for a touchdown on the first play of the game and the offense did its part after that, scoring on five of its first eight possessions with another 10 points coming off turnovers by the Rams. The defense was the real story as Middle Tennessee St. allowed 57 total yards in the first nine Colorado St. possessions, forcing three turnovers and six punts. The Blue Raiders outgained the Rams 380-246 including giving up -10 yards rushing 34 attempts (-0.3 ypc) in part due to having nine sacks for 70 yards. Illinois 24, Virginia 3It was not a good start for Illinois as it turned the ball over twice in its first six offensive plays but allowed just a field goal despite Virginia starting both drives in Illini territory. Illinois was then forced to punt in its next two possessions before the offense got on track, scoring touchdowns on its next two possessions on drives of 57 and 69 yards. The Illini had a chance to add more but fumbled at the goal line following a 96-yard drive and the offense stalled the rest of the way. The defense did the job going forward to make up for it and overall, the Illini outgained the Cavaliers 394-222 but was far from efficient with four turnovers and 10 penalties but did not allow a third down conversion (0-15). Incarnate Word 55, Nevada 41It was bound to catch up for Nevada as it won its first two games thanks to a +9 turnover margin but it was even in this game and got lit up by FCS Incarnate Word. It did start in their favor as the Wolf Pack recovered a fumble on the second play of the game which led to a field goal and then intercepted a pass on the next play which led to a touchdown for a 10-0 lead. Nevada eventually built a 17-3 lead but Incarnate Word scored 35 unanswered points on four touchdown drives of 75, 82 65 and 56 yards while returning a fumble 59 yards for the other score. The Cardinals outgained Nevada 616-478 despite running 24 fewer plays as they had a 8.9 to 5.1 yard per play advantage but committed 19 penalties for 145 yards. Holy Cross 37, Buffalo 31Buffalo jumped out to a 14-0 lead and eventually made it 21-7 before Holy Cross tied the game at 21 and then again at 28 before taking its first lead of the game 31-28 midway through the fourth quarter. Buffalo tied the game on a field goal with 31 seconds left but the Crusaders drove past midfield and won the game on a 46-yard Hail Mary touchdown pass as time expired. The offenses ruled the day as the first eight touchdown drives were all 62 yards or more and it was a clean game with no turnovers although Buffalo did commit 10 penalties for 91 yards. The stats were nearly identical as the Bulls outgained Holy Cross 464-457 on two fewer plays while having two more first downs. Liberty 21, UAB 14After forcing a three and out to open the game, UAB fumbled on its first offensive play but no damage was done. The Blazers punted on their next possession and fumbled again on the next drive but Liberty missed a field goal and UAB took advantage by going 80 yards in four plays to take a 7-0 lead. The Flames tied the game early in the second quarter which ended the scoring for both teams before the half. Liberty added a pair of touchdowns and was ready to put the game away but fumbled on its own 20-yard line and UAB punched it in but the Blazers never got the ball back as Liberty was able to run out the clock. The Flames outgained UAB 390-355 and benefitted from four fumbles. East Carolina 39, Old Dominion 21East Carolina went 70 yards on its opening possession but had to settle for a 22-yard field goal and after forcing a three and out, went 62 yards on the next possession to take a 9-0 lead. Old Dominion countered with a 75-yard touchdown drive and the Pirates were able to extend the lead to 16-7 at halftime thanks to a 13-play, 90-yard touchdown drive. The Monarchs got to within two points again after their first second half possession and then East Carolina took over with four scores on its next five possessions. The Pirates outgained Old Dominion 531-290, had a 30-12 first down edge and had the ball for nearly 22 more minutes. The Monarchs rushed for just 15 yards on 14 carries (1.1 ypc). Kansas 55, West Virginia 42The Mountaineers jumped ahead 14-0 and they scored a touchdown on their first four possessions to take another two-touchdown lead 28-14 before Kansas roared back. The Jayhawks scored a touchdown on three of their next four possessions to take a seven-point lead which eventually went to 11 points but West Virginia kicked a field goal and then tied the game with 35 seconds left to force overtime. Kansas scored on its overtime possession and then returned an interception 86 yards for the final margin. The Mountaineers outgained Kansas 511-419 but did run 12 more plays. The Jayhawks were efficient in the passing game and rushed for 200 yards on 36 carries (5.6 ypc) while going 11-15 on third down.Tulsa 38, Northern Illinois 35Tulsa took the opening kickoff and went 75-yards to take a 7-0 lead and eventually went ahead 17-0. Northern Illinois missed a field goal on its first possession and then after three straight punts, grabbed an interception which led to a touchdown but the Golden Hurricane went 69 yards in four plays to take a 24-7 lead into the break. The Huskies made the halftime adjustments and scored a touchdown on all three third quarter possessions and after trading touchdowns, Tulsa scored the game winner with 56 seconds left and intercepted a pass four plays later to seal the win. Tulsa outgained the Huskies 429-385 thanks to a potent passing attack that gained 322 yards on a 16.9 yards per completion average. Louisiana 49, Eastern Michigan 21The Eagles went 75 yards on their opening possession to grab a 7-0 lead and after punting on its next three possessions, they went 88 yards on 11 plays to take a 14-0 halftime lead. Louisiana had nothing going on offense, punting on its first four possessions and it had just 95 total yards when it began its second possession of the third quarter and then went off, scoring touchdowns on their next seven possessions. Eastern Michigan did have the lead 21-14 but 35 unanswered Cajuns points made it a runaway. The Eagles had five second half turnovers that led to 28 points and Louisiana outgained Eastern Michigan 459-361 as it held the Eagles to 41 yards rushing on 23 carries (1.8 ypc). Kentucky 26, Florida 16The Florida defense started strong as it forced Kentucky to punt on its first three possessions but the Gators only had a 3-0 lead before Kentucky finally scored by going 67 yards in two plays to take a 7-3 lead. Florida followed that up with another field goal then had an interception that led to a 34-yard touchdown drive and tacked on a safety to take a 16-13 lead at the half. The offense completely imploded in the second half as the Gators punted twice, threw an interception and turned it over on downs twice as they got outscored 13-0. Florida outgained Kentucky 279-272 yet managed only 12 first downs and allowed only 70 yards rushing on 38 carries (1.8 ypc) but gave up 15.5 yards per completion. Oklahoma 33, Kent St. 3Oklahoma did not dominate like it was expected to as it started the game with four straight punts and Kent St. was able to take a 3-0 lead early in the second quarter before the Sooners finally got the offense going with a 76-yard drive capped by a 36-yard touchdown pass with 18 seconds left in the first half. Oklahoma scored on its first four second half possessions to put the game away but they struggled again late with only 31 total yards in the fourth quarter on four possessions. The Sooners won the yardage battle 430-295 as the Golden Flashes did do a good job keeping the ball away from Oklahoma as they had the ball for over 12 more minutes while the Sooners were just 3-12 on third down. Texas St. 41, Florida International 12Texas St. opened the game with a punt in its first possession and then forced Florida International to punt in its first two possessions and the Bobcats turned those into points with a field goal and a two-play, 68-yard touchdown drive. The Panthers responded with a field goal and two possessions later, Texas St. added a touchdown on another two-play drive that went 53 yards. Florida International added another field goal before halftime to make it a 14-point game. Texas St. pulled away in the fourth quarter with an interception for a touchdown capping the scoring. The Bobcats outgained the Panthers 452-313 and held them to 62 yards rushing on 22 carries (2.8 ypc) and just three rushing first downs. Syracuse 48, Connecticut 14Syracuse took control early as it jumped out to a 17-0 lead in the first quarter and after allowing a touchdown, the Orange put up 10 more points to take a 27-7 lead to the half. Syracuse pulled away for good in the quarter as it completed a run of seven straight scoring drives to open the game that totaled 409 yards. The Huskies two scoring drives were 154 yards combined and their other nine possessions resulted in only 48 total yards that included six possessions that were three and outs. Syracuse outgained Connecticut 470-202 and ran 31 more plays while controlling the time of possession by almost 10 more minutes. The Orange rushing game was not good though with 156 yards on 51 carries (3.1 ypc). Toledo 55, Massachusetts 10The Rockets opened the game with touchdowns on their first four possessions, two coming on short fields after a punt and a turnover on downs and two longer scoring drives of 64 yards to account for the other two. Massachusetts was able to close the first half with a touchdown with seven seconds remaining to make it a 28-7 score but Toledo did not let up on offense as it scored in its first two possessions on 75 and 80-yard drives. The Minutemen added a meaningless 24-yard field goal with 23 seconds left. Toledo outgained Massachusetts 411-253, posting a 6.5 to 3.6 yard per play edge and the Minutemen were held to 48 yards passing on a mere 6.9 yards per completion. Weber St. 35, Utah St. 7The Utah St. offense started with a pair of punts and then after allowing a field goal after the second one, the Aggies returned the ensuing kickoff for a touchdown but little did it know, that would be it. After that, Utah St. had 12 possessions that resulted in four interceptions, five punts and three turnovers on downs with half of those drives producing single-digit yardage. Weber St. had no problem with its offense that worked the majority of the day on a short field and the Wildcats scored a 33-yard touchdown on one of those interceptions. Weber St. outgained the Aggies 401-283 and it nearly doubled Utah St. in completion average at 18.4 to 9.8 and held the ball for nearly 12 more minutes. Oklahoma St. 34, Arizona St. 17Arizona St. opened the game with the first score on a first quarter field goal and it took awhile for Oklahoma St. to get its offense going as in its first five possessions, it punted four times and threw an interception deep in Sun Devils territory. The Cowboys took the lead midway through the second quarter as they recovered a fumble and went 37 yards for a touchdown and they closed the first half with a pair of scores to take a 17-3 lead. Arizona St. did not go away as it cut the lead to three points before a pair of Cowboys touchdowns closed it. Oklahoma St. outgained Arizona St. 465-354 but it took 23 more plays and they were on the wrong end of the yard per play averages at 5.8 to 5.5Georgia Southern 45, Nebraska 42It was a fast paced game in the first half as Georgia Southern and Nebraska went back and forth and ended the first 30 minutes in a 28-28 tie while combining for 689 yards of total offense on 83 plays. The second half was also back and forth but not as explosive with just 31 total points as four of the five scoring drives were 75 or more yards. The Eagles regained the lead twice before Nebraska took a 42-38 lead with 3:05 remaining but Georgia Southern went 75 yards in 11 plays to take back the lead and Nebraska missed a game tying field goal as time expired. The Eagles outgained the Huskers 642-575 and while Nebraska won the turnover battle 2-0, it was hurt by 10 penalties that awarded the Eagles four first downs. USC 41, Stanford 28USC scored touchdowns on its first five possessions to take a 35-14 lead into halftime. The Trojans got a pair of third quarter field goals as the offense went basic vanilla with the game in hand and the Cardinal added two late garbage touchdowns to make it a more respectable final score. Four of those first five touchdown drives were 83, 93, 75 and 98 yards as USC racked up 505 yards of offense while Stanford had 441 yards but 145 of those were on those two late touchdown drives. Both teams completed 20 passes and it was the Trojans that were much more explosive as they averaged 17.1 yards per completion while the Cardinal had an average of 11.0. Stanford ran 17 more plays despite an even time of possession. Auburn 25, San Jose St. 16Auburn won an ugly game as it went into halftime trailing 10-7 and the Tigers opened the second half with a 69-yard touchdown drive to take the lead it would not give back. They scored on their first three possessions of the second half to build a double-digit lead and the Spartans would not go home quiet as they added a pair of field goals to make it a one possession game but failed on the onsides kick and Auburn was able to run out the final 2:11. The Tigers only outgained San Jose St. 378-329 but did run eight fewer plays and had a 6.2 to 4.8 yards per play edge. The passing defense gave up a lot of yards but did not break and the Tigers allowed only 54 yards rushing on 29 carries (1.9 ypc). Virginia Tech 27, Boston College 10After an interception on the Eagles second play from scrimmage, the Hokies scored a touchdown after a seven-play, 14-yard drive. Virginia Tech punted on its next possession and then scored on the next two drives to take a 17-0 lead. Boston College closed the first half with a field goal and opened the second half with a touchdown to cut the Hokies lead to seven points but the Virginia Tech defense stepped up by allowing 18 total yards over the final four Boston College possessions. The Hokies outgained the Eagles 284-155 and had the edge in yards per play at 4.1 to 2.6 so both offenses were not in synch. Virginia Tech held Boston College to four yards rushing on 26 carries (0.2 ypc) with five sacks helping that average. Michigan 56, Hawaii 10The Wolverines came out strong as expected as they scored touchdowns on six of eight first half possessions while forcing Hawaii to punt on all eight of its possessions in the first 30 minutes. Michigan led 42-0 at the break while outgaining the Warriors 410-51 and it let up the rest of the way with the game in hand. The Wolverines outgained Hawaii 588-253 and the Warriors yards were obviously skewed by going against the non-starters for most of the second half. Michigan faced only six third downs, converting two, and it averaged a whopping 10.7 yards per play by running only 55 plays while the defense allowed 7.0 fewer yards per play. There were only four penalties combined the entire game. UTEP 20, New Mexico St. 13UTEP took its opening possession 63 yards in 17 plays to set up a field goal and then each team drove deep into the opponents territory on their next possessions but turned it over, New Mexico St. with an interception and UTEP with a fumble. The Miners got back on the scoreboard in the second quarter with a pair of touchdowns just over a minute apart as they went 65 yards for a score and then recovered a fumble and scored again a play later to take a 17-0 lead into halftime. The Aggies cut the lead to 20-13 late in the fourth quarter and got the ball back but fumbled at the UTEP 14-yard line. The Aggies outgained UTEP 298-261 but all three turnovers proved costly. BYU 26, Baylor 20The Cougars jumped ahead early as it went 65 yards and had to settle for a 27-yard field goal. The defense did its job as it forced four punts on the first four Baylor possessions but its own offense mirrored that by punting on its next four possessions and the Bears scored the first touchdown late in the second quarter to take a 6-3 but the Cougars went 75 yard in eight plays to regain the lead. There were two more lead changes before the game was tied at 20 and BYU missed a field goal to win the game. The Cougars scored in the second overtime to win after a fourth down stop. BYU won the yardage battle 366-289 as penalties hurt both offenses, 14-117 for Baylor and 9-74 for BYU. Oregon St. 35, Fresno St. 32Oregon St. struck first on a 13-play, 47-yard drive to take a 7-0 lead and after Fresno St. tied the game on it next possession, the Beavers scored it second touchdown midway through the second quarter. The Bulldogs then scored on their next four possessions, two field goals to end the first half and 10 points to open the second half to take a nine-point lead and Oregon St. eventually retook the lead with 1:50 left in the game before the Bulldogs thought they won the game with a go ahead touchdown with 1:05 left but Oregon St. went 75 yards in five plays and scored the game winner as time ran out. Fresno St. won the yardage battle 492-397 but ran 11 more plays and had just a 0.4 yards per play edge. Mississippi St. 39, Arizona 17Arizona got on the scoreboard first as it went 75 yards in six plays to take a 7-0 lead but Mississippi St. scored 15 straight points and took an 18-10 lead into halftime. The Bulldogs opened the second half with a touchdown drive of 75 yards to go up by 15 points and then grabbed an interception but fumbled on their first play which led to a four-yard touchdown drive for Arizona. Mississippi put up the final two touchdowns to pull away. The Bulldogs outgained Arizona 426-316 and the run defense was stout as they allowed just 40 yards on 22 carries (1.8 ypc). Both teams committed three turnovers with Mississippi converting their into 14 points and Arizona converting theirs into 10 points. 

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