Dragon's College Football Picks Week 9 (Season 4)

Last Week 5-2

Overall : 44-36-2

watch me swag GIF by Kevin Hart: What Now?

Last week I got back into my winning ways and thank the football Gods for that. I got houses to build and bags to drop can’t afford going on a two-week skid and ruining what’s been a lucrative season. We are heading down the home stretch of the season. With the exception of a few one-offs, we are locked into conference schedules and rivalries. This means the lines are getting tight.

Texas State +6. vs. Troy

Last time I was all in on a Troy game I got burnt. So, call this an attempt at retribution. Texas State is on the verge of bowl eligibility, and they feature a potent offense that’s dropping 38.3 ppg. They are going to test a very stout Troy defense all day. I’m very tempted to jump on the money line here, but I honestly don’t know enough about Texas State to go all in, but I do think they will be the toughest test Troy has seen in a month and will keep this game tight.
Texas State +6.5

Colorado vs. UCLA Over 61.5
It’s been a while since I’ve talked about Colorado but they are back involved in a Dragon Pick. I still don’t think this is a good team or a good culture. But I do think they have a skilled offense that typically gets points on the board. More importantly their defense is flat out terrible. Enter Chip Kelly and the Bruins. I think they are going to have to do a bunch of the lifting to reach the over, but UCLA is up for the challenge and the Buffs do just enough to hold up their end of the deal.
Over 61.5

Vanderbilt vs. Ole Miss Over 63
This pick is purely based on Lane Kiffin and his ego. Throughout the season, the Rebels have shown if given the chance they will run up the score. Currently averaging 40 points per game. I believe they have no problem doing their part to reach this big over.
Over 63

Oregon vs. Utah +6.5 Under 47.5
Utah has been an interesting case this season. They’ve used three quarterbacks and at one point had a safety playing running back and still managed to pick up the win. Coach Wittingham has done a phenomenal job keeping the Utes rolling through an injury plagued season. Historically Utah has given Oregon fits including knocking them off twice last year. I think Oregon is the better team this year, but history tells me this one is going to be a struggle. Looking at the trends the line opened at 49 and I’ve seen it as low as 47. The smart money is hammering this one down and I think 47.5 is still a safe spot to get in.
Under 47.5

Oregon State -3 vs. Arizona
This one is my head scratcher of the week. Oregon State is ranked 11th in the nation. They are one of 10 teams with multiple wins against ranked opponents. They have a strong defense a reliable offense that is anchored in a stout rushing attack. This is a complete team. Saturday night they are going on the road to Arizona and sure strange things happen down there at night but come on. I know the Wildcats offense seems to be clicking after dropping over 40 points in both last two games including drubbing Washington State last week. But I think the Beavers ability to run the ball will control the clock and limit possessions for Arizona.
Oregon State -3

Virginia +18.5 vs. Miami Over 47.5
The Hoos are the hottest team in the nation right now, you can’t tell me otherwise. Saturday they are attempting to make history becoming the first team to win consecutive road games as a double-digit dog. Miami has lost three of its last five games as a double-digit favorite. Vegas this it’s a possibility. I said it in last week’s game thread, and I’ll continue it here. What the Hoos did last week, more importantly what they showed on the field and their response to Coach Elliott was inspiring to me. There remains plenty of holes that need to be plugged all over this team, but they are scrappy and they have not given up once on the season. In Miami you have a Canes team that was ready to assume their spot at the top of college football after drubbing Texas A&M a month ago and that has come crashing down after back to back losses to GT and UNC. This is a program struggling to find an identity and confidence while, I think the Hoos know who they are and will remain true to it.
Hoos +18.5 Over 47.5


Season 1 Starz GIF by The Rook

Week 8 was not kind to me … at all. I went 1-7 and thought about slinking away, never to be heard from again. But no - can’t do that. I’m going to try and work my way back toward .500. And if not, I’ll be providing the public service of demonstrating what mere amateurs can expect against the spread. Stick with Dragon and you’ll be allright. My season record stands at 19-25-3.

I’m skeptical about Texas State. There’s a team that has had a cushy schedule - played two teams with winning records and lost them both. Troy is another level of tough. I like Virginia with the over, but that may just be the Wahoo euphoria lingering from last week. I like Oregon, but Utah is the right pick - they have won, what, 18 in a row at home and 29 out of 30. Until that changes, stick with the Utes.

Iowa St. -3 vs. Baylor In a year when not much has gone right, I’ve been rolling with Iowa State and I’m sticking with them. Baylor hasn’t beaten an FBS team at home this year, and just squeaked by Cincinnati last week after Iowa State thumped the Bearcats. Baylor’s red zone scoring rate is an anemic 70%. Give me the Cyclones minus the small number.

Washington -27.5 vs. Stanford. Just like Baylor, Stanford hasn’t beaten an FBS team at home this year. The last couple against Oregon and UCLA haven’t been close, losing by roughly 35. Stanford is 129th in passing yards allowed. Were it not for Washington’s lousy result last week, this spread would be higher. I’m taking advantage of it and laying the (almost) 4 TDs.

Nebraska -2.5 vs. Purdue After two early losses, Nebraska has righted the ship, winning four of five and losing only to the cheaters from Ann Arbor. Purdue is about 90th in the country in rushing offense and sacks allowed. Not good enough against the Huskers who are top 5 in rushing defense and top 10 in total sacks. Playing at home, I’m comfortable with Nebraska giving up less than a field goal.

West Virginia +7 vs. UCF I’m having trouble seeing why UCF is giving up a touchdown to West Virginia. The Mountaineers aren’t great, but their offense has been solid the last couple of weeks and should find success again versus UCF, a team that is giving up 3rd down conversions at a rate over 50%. UCF can put up points and may win this one at home, but I don’t think they are the better team and the margin should be closer than seven.

SMU -21 vs. Tulsa I was going to take the under on this game, but I’m going to take the favorite instead. SMU has a top-15 defense and a top 35 passing attack. Meanwhile Tulsa is 123rd in passing yards allowed and 111th in passing offense. SMU is jumping out to a big lead in this one at home and Tulsa doesn’t have the answers to stage a comeback. Look for a repeat of what Rice did to Tulsa last week.

Michigan St. +7 vs. Minnesota If that Iowa punt return hadn’t been called back in controversial fashion, Minnesota would have failed to cover in 6 out of 7 games. Their passing game is trash and their running game isn’t what it historically has been. This is a pick against Minnesota covering a seven point spread rather than a pick for the Spartans. If Michigan State hasn’t given up on the season, this one is closer than a touchdown.

Tulane vs. Rice, over 53.5 Tulane is playing great with Michael Pratt back at QB (12 TDs vs 2 INTs). Tulane’s defense is stout against the run, but is giving up 263 yards per game against the pass (66% completions allowed). Rice is 11th in the nation averaging 320 yards per game through the air. Rice is at home. Take the over.

Georgia vs. Florida, under 49.5 Georgia is 6th in total defense and Florida’s offensive 3rd down conversion rate is 29%. Ouch! If Florida is going to hang around in this one, they’ll have to do it on defense. As it happens, Florida’s defense is no slouch either, coming in at 18th in the nation. With Bowers out, I expect the Bulldogs to operate less efficiently than normal on offense. I’ll go with the under.


Questions for Dragon: You had a couple of games where the line moved pretty significantly. Texas State opened at +4 and moved to 6.5 or 7. The total on Virginia and Miami started at 52.5 and dropped all the way down to 47.5. Both of those moves helped you with the side you wanted to pick.

How often does movement like that put you off of a pick? Do you prefer to pick a game where the line is reasonably stable?


Great question. It honestly depends on the situation if line movement affects my thinking. There are times I see it as confirmation the Oregon Utah game is an example of that. Other times it can talk me into a pick like uva Miami i feel is an over correction. When and how the line moves also plays a role. Ilwad it early or late money? Is it spread out money or a few sharps And then there are times i might shop that movement to see which book has the option.

Not a great answer but generally im not afraid of movement until I’m not.

1 Like

Love the under at the cocktail party. The Washington game was teasing me all day even saw it at 26 which is silly. In the end I shied away but think it’s a smart call

How about this one:

We have both mentioned times where we think the line doesn’t look right. We’ve looked at the game, the trends, the stats, the injuries etc. and we think Vegas is wrong. But Vegas doesn’t make a living being wrong. Do you tend to go with your research/gut, bet what Vegas says, or lay off the game?

Have you ever tracked those games and found out what percentage of the time Vegas is right when you think they are wrong?

1 Like

How do you find out what kind of money is moving the line (spread out or just a few sharps)?

1 Like

Last question for the day:

Do you try and place a bet early in the week, finding good value with a line that is over/under inflated, or do you tend to wait until things settle?

1 Like

I’m heading to the UVa vs. UNC soccer game tonight… what’s your take @BDragon & @5sheff?


Speaking for myself the best year i ever had betting the football games was when i played with 2 bookies and one of them didn’t keep up with the line movements. I played the middle betting on both sides and i busted one bookie and made the other one pretty fat . I ended up with by far the best year i ever had. Most years Iost my ass but playing the middle is a lock
I don’t think that happens to much nowadays


I’d bet the under

1 Like

Sadly, I am out of touch. I used to attend all the home soccer games back in the days of John Harkes, Tony Meola, Jeff Agoos, John Maessner and friends. That was a long time ago.

It sounds like you’re going to have great weather for a late October game. Doesn’t seem like there is a ton riding on the result other than the desire to Hulk-smash anything Tar Heel.

angry the hulk GIF

Hopefully we walk out tonight with at least a draw and a top-four seed for the conference tournament.

1 Like

Angry Sport GIF by Play Sports

Great questions and i love answering just been busy.

I wait until Friday to bet. My money goes in not long after I post here. When i had more time i would look for lines early in the week but i found you have to be real in tune. I also got burned a few times due to a late injury or a radical shift in weather.

So i mostly stay away nowadays but if i seagood opportunity I’ll jump


This is where it gets tricky and for me becomes gut vs data. Pros will tell u take your gut out and follow the data. If that comes. Up I’ll tendto lay off the game and see what happens. If I do go with Vegas it’s because I’m seeing others jump on and I tryst their opinion.

I track all my bets and have for 4 yrs now but i neeg to add that particular column of data.

I never thought of this before but perhaps it explains my love and why i work in both. Politics and gambling are a delicate alchemy of art and science. The greats know how to walk that tightrope I’m still learning.

1 Like

Usually it’s from a random pod or an article i do have a couple guys on the ground who drop nuggets

Again this is where science meets art.

1 Like

2-1 thx to the Hoos heading into the night game… long way to go…

1 Like

I had a great start today - several games that were clear winners. Faded down the stretch to 5-3. A little disappointing, but a step in the right direction after last week. I’ll take it.


Nothing wrong with that performance. Well done sir

John Boyega Drink GIF by Amazon Prime Video

1 Like

I’m going to need a big night pf Oregon State to salvage a .500 week