Today's Free Picks for
Posted at 10:30 AM EST. Odds subject to change.
SHI Stadium, Piscataway, NJ
Streaming: Big Ten Network
Virginia Tech +7 over Rutgers
3:30 PM EST. Rutgers is 2-0 straight up and 2-0 against the spread (ATS). The narrative surrounding this game is that Rutgers defense is outstanding, Va Tech can’t run the ball and therefore the Hokies will be forced to pass, which is a bad look for them. The other narrative is that Rutgers has showcased a remarkable ability to control the clock, with an average time of possession exceeding 36 minutes per game. The reason they control the clock so well is because the Scarlet Knights possess a potent ground game led by running back Kyle Monangai, who has proven himself as a dynamic force in recent outings.
Against Purdue last week, Va Tech was outgained on the ground, 179-46. Against Temple last week, Rutgers outgained them 254-52. We could go on and on about how the X’s and O’s favor the Scarlet Knights but that’s not how we do it over here. We’re after value and the value here on the visitor is strong.
Last week the Hokies were favored over Purdue, another Big-10 team and although they lost, that game was tied late in the fourth quarter. Now the Hokies go from a one-point choice over the Boilermakers to a 7-point underdog. Besides that, who the f**k has Rutgers beaten to warrant spotting this many points? Rutgers’ last five wins were against Temple, Northwestern, Indiana, Temple again and Wagner. That win over Northwestern was extremely unimpressive despite teh 24-7 final. Northwestern is everything it appeared to be in a disastrous opener. The Wildcats are the weakest team in the Big-10 and will never see the postseason under the current staff. Additionally, Temple is one of the worst teams in the entire country. Rutgers has played two absolute cupcakes and there is a price to pay for playing garbage teams.
If you wager on Rutgers here, you may win but it also plays into our “too late to the party” mantra after the Scarlet Knights covered twice in its first two games. Furthermore, this is a non-conference game for the host and we have to point out that Rutgers has #2 Michigan on deck next week. It’s not just a lookahead spot but it's a major lookahead spot that has to be somewhat distracting. Rutgers is rarely favored in this range against teams with any semblance of pedigree. The Scarlet Knights have run over two absolute marshmallows to skew their numbers by a large amount and it is therefore the perfect time to sell. Upset possibility.
Virginia Tech +7 -107 (Risking 2.14 units - To Win: 2.00)