Today's Free Picks for
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+37½ -110 +37½ -110 +37½ -110 SIA +37½ -110
Posted at 9:00 AM EST and odds are subject to change.
UL-Monroe +37½ over Texas
DKR-Texas Memorial Stadium - Austin, TX
8:00 PM EST. Steve Sarkisian’s first year in Austin started off well enough, as his Longhorns went 4-1 to start the 2021 season before that train came off the tracks after three straight losses to Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, and Baylor. Texas would end up 5-7 and on the outside looking in during bowl season.
Expectations are high at Texas, as they always are, but this year Sarkisian brings in a top-five recruiting class. He also welcomes Quinn Ewers, quarterback transfer from Ohio State, who was named the top recruit in the nation in 2021. Ewers will have big shoes to fill after Casey Thompson led the Big 12 with 24 touchdown passes last season, he also added four rushing majors. Thompson transferred to Nebraska and has been tight-lipped about the reasons why he left Texas, but one has to wonder why a player that had such a good season would leave a high-profile program like the Longhorns to join Nebraska, which hasn’t been relevant in 25 years.
Pick any week and this is a huge pile of points for a team with a new look offense to try and cover. Now add that it’s the first game of the season, and there are still likely some kinks to work out and it’s an even tougher hill to climb. To make it even more daunting, the Longhorns have a pretty big game next week with a little program called Alabama.
Alabama is going to be the biggest game on most schedules this season, and while Texas has plenty of rivals including Oklahoma and Baylor, Sarkisian spent the two seasons prior to joining Texas on Nick Saban’s staff in Tuscaloosa as the offensive coordinator. Point being, it is Alabama that is at the forefront on the minds of the Longhorns, players inlcuded.
We’ve spent little time on UL-Monroe, but that’s because it has very little to do with this play. It wouldn't matter if Texas was playing Central Middle West Louisiana Tech Academy State, we’d still be looking to fade Texas in this unfavorable spot. There are too many questions and one has to figure with the Longhorns will treat this game like a glorified practice. If they play hard from gate to wire and cover this inflated number, so be it, but we’re taking the points all the way to the bank.
UL Monroe +37½ -110 (Risking 2.20 units - To Win: 2.00)