Tiny Nick’s Gambling Picks: 9/30

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Locks

NCAA Football (0.75 Unit) Tulane/Houston Over 54.5 (-110): 6:00 PM CT on ESPN

This total should be above the key number of 56, in my opinion, so I’m seeing a lot of value on the over here. Odds makers seem to be underappreciating the train wreck that is the Houston defense so far this season. Against a schedule that shouldn’t scare anyone, the Cougars now rank 116th in points and 114th in yards allowed. That’s caused all their games to clear this total easily, and now they’ve also lost their best pass rusher to injury.

Houston is known at this stage for letting every opponent hang in games, and that’s what Tulane should be able to do here while creating a back-and-forth affair. But oddsmakers also seem to be overly appreciating the Tulane defense, which is the biggest reason for the deflated total. The Green Wave simply haven’t played anyone with a scary offense in ideal conditions, and that’s what is in store for them tonight.

Last year’s meeting saw a 40-22 Houston win, and the Tulane offense has gotten a lot better while Houston’s defense has fallen off a cliff. This should be a quarterback duel between Clayton Tune and Michael Pratt that sees points in the 60’s or higher.

NCAA Football (0.5 Unit) Washington First Half Team Total Over 16.5 (-110): 9:30 PM CT on ESPN

This will be a fun game with many implications, and I couldn’t say who comes out on top. But I do know that until further notice, UCLA is a team to pick on in the first half of their games.

A Bruins defense that had a lot of question marks coming into the season never seems to show up until after halftime, and now they have by far their toughest test yet. Against a Charmin-soft schedule, UCLA has allowed 14.7 first-half points per game against FBS opponents, allowing both South Alabama and Bowling Green to put up 17 in the first half.

The Washington offense will be a severe shock to the system for UCLA behind quiet Heisman contender Michael Penix Jr. The Huskies have cleared this total in all of their first halves against FBS competition, averaging 25.7 points. They play fast and throw like crazy, so against a defense with the tendencies UCLA’s has, Washington should find their way over this number early in a shootout.

Degenerates

NCAA Football UTSA/Middle Tennessee Over 65 (-110): 6:30 PM CT on CBSSN

Much is being made of Middle Tennessee’s upset win in Miami last week, but plenty of odd factors played into that result. A big contributor was the development of Blue Raiders quarterback Chase Cunningham, who finally seemed to click with the new offensive scheme the week before. That should help here with this total, especially against a porous UTSA defense.

The Roadrunners are 112th in total yards allowed so far this year, which has helped 3 of their games get into the 70s for total points. But UTSA quarterback Frank Harris continues to throw all over everyone, particularly to the unstoppable De’Corian Clark. These teams both play at breakneck speed on offense, so it should be a track meet. Totals above the key number of 63 are difficult to reach, but these teams have a very realistic shot of getting there.

Tiny Nick is 873-729 ATS (+77.4 Units) on his Locks since joining Zone Coverage. 

Every day he will offer his Locks and Degenerate picks. Locks are the games he’s confident in. Degenerates are entertaining but riskier picks.

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image credit: USA Today sports

Locks NFL (0.5 Unit) New York Jets @ Minnesota Vikings -3 (-110): 12 PM CT on CBS The Minnesota Vikings are undefeated this season when favorited, so […]

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