Free Football Picks From the Wiseguys

The Oregon Ducks are starting to look eerily similar to last year’s team that steamrolled through the season, en route to a national championship invitation. The Ducks ran into the buzz-saw that was Cam Newton’s Auburn Tigers and lost a close, hard fought game. And like the game against Auburn, Oregon faced LSU to begin the season, only to fall just short against a top tier SEC team.

Outside of the SEC, however, Oregon has dominated opponents in impressive fashion. After falling to LSU, Oregon spanked Nevada and Missouri State, winning each game by 49 points. They head to the Desert this weekend to take on a reeling Arizona Wildcats team, fresh off their second consecutive butt-kicking.

The Ducks opened as a shockingly-low 11 point road favorite, but the sharps quickly bet that up to the neighborhood of 15-16 points. There’s been a little buyback on Arizona at some books, but not much. The sharps usually lead bettors to profitable plays, and Oregon looks like another good play.

At this point, Oregon has earned my trust. This is a good, experienced football team that has a habit of scoring a ton of points and kicking the crap out of teams. Their high tempo, high octane offense is well documented. But did you know Oregon is second in the nation in yards per rush, even after playing LSU? Only Georgia Tech has a higher average and they can thank the Kansas defense for their top spot.

LaMichael James had over 200 yards and 3 tds last week, and I like what he had to say after the Ducks’ 56-7 win over Missouri State, “I’m really happy with the way we played, but this game is over and now we have to get back in here and study film. We’re going on the road and it’s going to be a tough opponent.” I think losing to LSU has forced this team to focus even harder at the task at hand, which spells trouble for Arizona.

The Wildcats are led by senior quarterback Nick Foles, who ranks third in the country with 1,049 pass yards. But after getting blown out in back to back weeks, Foles had a sobering thought. Referring to his teammates, Foles said, “They are all young guys and they have to have time to mature.” True enough, the offensive line is rebuilt after last year and Arizona has had no luck running the ball. With a paltry 2.6 yards per carry, they rank 111th in the FBS.

In fairness, Arizona has had to traverse an awful schedule early on. After opening with a cupcake (Northern Arizona) they traveled to Stillwater to get hammered by Okie State, and then came home to get hammered by Stanford. They lost by 23 and 27 points in consecutive weeks, and in my estimation, Oregon is better than both the Cowboys and the Cardinal.

The Arizona defense needs to play better. Oklahoma State racked up 594 yards, while Stanford could only manage 567 yards. I see the Ducks in that ballpark. That should be enough to cover this spread.

The wiseguys certainly think Oregon will cover, steaming the line 4 or more points off the opening number. You won’t get many chances to see a duck slaughter a wildcat, but that might just happen this Saturday night. Don’t be afraid to lay the points here. Best of luck.

Maddux Sports has 7 football picks lined up for this Saturday.  Grab these weekly college football picks today and crush your bookmaker this weekend.

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