The Pi-Rate Ratings

October 28, 2020

PiRate Picks for October 29-November 2, 2020

Cue-Steve Sabol

This is our annual tradition to publish the fantastic poem written by NFL Films genius Steve Sabol

The Autumn Wind

The Autumn Wind is a pirate
Blustering in from sea,
With a rollicking song, he sweeps along,
Swaggering boisterously.
His face is weather beaten.
He wears a hooded sash,
With a silver hat about his head,
And a bristling black mustache.

He growls as he storms the country,
A villain big and bold.
And the trees all shake and quiver and quake,
As he robs them of their gold.

The Autumn Wind is a raider,
Pillaging just for fun.
He’ll knock you ’round and upside down,
And laugh when he’s conquered and won.

——————————————————————————–

Last week, the Autumn wind might have been a pirate, but it did the PiRates in. It laughed when it conquered and won against our picks. We suffered the second worst week in the history of this column.

For the year, we are now in the red by a small percentage, and quite truthfully, we feel a bit gun-shy this week. The NFL spreads were basically too close to our spreads, or there are too many personnel changes due to injuries and decisions to start new blood.

We are going with 11 selections this week, and 10 of them are college plays. It should be quite obvious by now that you should not even consider using the information here to place actual money on with a sports book. The PiRate Ratings make their selections for purely entertainment purposes only.

Date:10/29-11/2

College Straight Wagers
SelectionOpponentLine
1. Kansas StWest Va.+4
2. Michigan St.Michigan+24.5
3. Georgia St.Coastal Carolina+3
4. Ole MissVanderbilt-16
5. N. CarolinaVirginia+6.5

10-point Teasers (3-game parlays at -110)
SelectionOpponentLine
6. WyomingHawaii+11
GeorgiaKentucky-5
Wake ForestSyracuse-1

SelectionOpponentLine
7. TempleTulane+14
Central Fla.Houston+7.5
Notre DameGa. Tech-9.5

SelectionOpponentLine
8. Ole MissVanderbilt-6.5
Texas A&MArkansas-2
AlabamaMiss. St.-20.5

Money Line Parlays
Must WinOpponentOdds
9. CincinnatiMemphis+131.99
Okla. St.Texas

Must WinOpponentOdds
10. Boise St.Air Force+153.96
DukeCharlotte
San Jose St.New Mexico
San Diego St.Utah St.

NFL Straight Wager
SelectionOpponentLine
11. CarolinaAtlanta-2

October 15, 2020

PiRate Picks for October 15-19, 2020

That Virus Changes Everything–Injuries Not So Much!

We had a nice variety of games ready to feature here this week, but then that little tiny virus cancelled two of the games we were ready to play and greatly altered a third, making it unplayable. You can obviously determine the three college games we refer to in the above sentence.

A crucial injury in the NFL might have made you think we would avoid a certain team like the plague, yet we are not only making a selection involving said team, we are making a selection in that team’s favor.

You will also notice that we are playing opposite sides of the same college game this week, going with the underdog against a spread that our ratings indicate is too high, while picking the favorite to win in a money line parlay. It is not a mistake; this was a deliberate choice to hopefully hit an unorthodox middle.

Before you get all gung ho about these selections, remember that we do this only for mathematical (nerdy) fun. We never actually wager real money on these selections, and we highly advise you to refrain from using these selections as advice. This statement is repeated every week, but like people that still text while driving, a group of you will immediately place wagers on these selections to try to receive the same parlay odds.

Before revealing today’s selections, let’s do a little review of last week’s selections and how we are performing year to date with our imaginary bank roll that never runs out of fresh imaginary $100 bills.

Last week, we issued 12 selections and won half of them. It was a profitable week, because we were 3-0 on money line parlays with payouts of +295, +141, and +166.60. At $100 imaginary per wager, we invested $1,200 in nonexistent currency and received $1,470.01 for a proftiable return on investment of 22.5%.

For the year, we are now up 7.94% in the profit column. But, this by no means indicates that we are going to stay in the black for the remainder of the season.

Additionally, the way our selections won last week was 180° different from the way we won in prior weeks. It was straight wagering that was unusually accurate heading into last week’s selections, while the exotic wagers were in the toilet.

Last week, the straight wagers lost a little, while the exotics won big. So, we cannot guess which style of wagers will do better in any one week. Thus, if you choose to pick just one or two of our selections, you are really taking a double gamble with your investment.

Just as this edition was about to publish, word has come out on the Twitterverse that the Atlanta Falcons have just reported a rash of new positives, and their facilities have been closed. We have a selection involving the Falcons, so by the time you see this, the Vegas lines may have changed.

And, we offer our condolences to the family of former NFL player Fred Dean, who passed away as a result of the virus. Let’s hope the biggest loser is the virus, as it is beaten like Georgia Tech over Cumberland.

Here are our selections for this week. Stay well!

Date:10/15-10/19
College Wagers
SelectionOpponentLine
1. HoustonBYU+5.5
2. KentuckyTennessee+6
3. Florida Intl.CharlotteCancelled


4. Money Line +143.55
Must WinOpponentOdds
SMUTulane
TennesseeKentucky+143.55
Notre DameLouisville


5. Money Line +152.83
Must WinOpponentOdds
Texas A&MMiss. St.
Middle Tenn.North Texas+152.83
N. CarolinaFlorida St.


NFL Wagers
SelectionOpponentLine
6. DenverNew England+10
7. DallasArizona+2


8. 10-point Teaser Parlay
TeamTeamOdds
N.Y. GiantsWashingtonO32.5
PhiladelphiaBaltimoreO37.5
MiamiN.Y. JetsO37


9. Money Line Parlay +142.97
Must WinOpponentOdds
MinnesotaAtlanta
PittsburghCleveland+142.97


10. Money Line Parlay +110.23
Must WinOpponentOdds
BaltimorePhiladelphia
IndianapolisCincinnati+110.23
MiamiN.Y. Jets

October 14, 2020

Saturday’s College Football TV Schedule

This weekly addition to the PiRate Ratings is supposed to be the easiest edition we put out, but not this year. The TV schedule has already changed twice today after changing on Monday when Baylor postponed their game with Oklahoma St. With the cancellation of Vanderbilt and Missouri, one switch was made. Then, when it became official that Florida and LSU were moving to December 12, another change was made.

So, this is the TV schedule as of Wednesday evening, Eastern Time. We suggest you look at this feature again later in the week if other games are postponed. If the schedule changes, we will do our best to update it all the way until Saturday morning.

Time ETNetworkHomeVisitorsEntertainment Value
12:00 PMABCGeorgia TechClemsonTech turnovers could make this super blowout
12:00 PMESPNSouth CarolinaAuburnShould be rather close game–loser’s coach on hot seat
12:00 PMESPN2E. CarolinaNavyReplaces Tulsa-Cinti.
12:00 PMFOXWest VirginiaKansasProbably a dud game
12:00 PMSECNTennesseeKentuckyVols own Cats in this series, but an even matchup
12:00 PMFSNSyracuseLibertyFlames could win this one and maybe by a lot
12:00 PMESPNUSouth AlabamaTexas St.Only if you are a fan of one of the teams
12:00 PMACCNMiami (Fla.)PittsburghBoth teams coming off emotional losses
1:30 PMCBSSNUTSAArmyGame should be over quickly–maybe 120 plays
2:30 PMNBCNotre DameLouisvilleIrish need to win big to let Clemson know they are there
3:30 PMABCMemphisCentral FloridaCould it be a 90 to 100-point total?
3:30 PMSECNArkansasOle MissBefore Hogs were in SEC, this was a rivalry game
3:30 PMFSNNC St.DukeA backyard brawl that should make Pack 4-1
4:00 PMESPNMississippi St.Texas A&MAll’s not well in Starkville all of a sudden
4:00 PMACCNWake ForestVirginiaExpect a close game but maybe not entertaining
4:00 PMESPN2Georgia SouthernU MassThe Minutemen play their first game of the year
6:00 PMCBSSNLouisiana TechMarshallWinner of this game most likely wins CUSA regular season
7:30 PMABCFlorida St.North CarolinaUNC needs to top half a hundred again to be a contender
7:30 PMESPN2UTEPSouthern Miss.CANCELLED
8:00 PMCBSAlabamaGeorgiaMaybe the Regular Season Game of the Year!
8:00 PMESPNUCharlotteFlorida Int’l.CANCELLED
8:00 PMACCNVirginia TechBoston CollegeNice game but not Bama & Dogs

Coming tomorrow: our for entertainment purposes only handicapping selections that have accidentally made a decent imaginary profit this year. We must be due for a big losing week, but maybe we can back into some additional winners. We heard from a few of you that went against our warning and actually wagered on some longshot parlays that happened to win last week. Please do not think for one second that we can be this lucky again. Don’t wager real money on our fun picks!

September 27, 2020

PiRate Ratings–College Football For October 2-3, 2020

Filed under: College Football — Tags: , , , , , , , , , — piratings @ 1:30 pm

This Week’s PiRate Rating Spreads

HomeVisitorsPiRateMeanBias
BYULa. Tech25.223.023.8
FloridaS. Carolina13.314.914.8
TexasTCU11.011.911.0
TennesseeMissouri12.512.211.9
PittsburghNC St.12.614.412.7
Georgia St.E. Carolina-1.5-2.1-0.2
Coastal Car.Arkansas St.-2.4-3.5-2.0
West Va.Baylor-6.1-6.4-6.3
UABUTSA19.519.919.5
AlabamaTexas A&M10.511.812.4
Boston Coll.N. Carolina-8.9-9.8-10.5
CincinnatiUSF20.421.222.2
KansasOklahoma St.-25.1-24.5-26.4
SMUMemphis-5.1-4.2-4.9
Kansas St.Texas Tech9.69.79.4
DukeVirginia Tech-10.9-11.2-13.9
KentuckyOle Miss8.09.59.0
Fla. AtlanticCharlotte-3.6-2.5-4.0
Middle Tenn.Western Ky.-12.4-12.9-13.5
Air ForceNavy3.26.25.2
UL-MonroeGa. Southern-17.0-18.0-20.2
Iowa St.Oklahoma-4.1-4.8-4.4
GeorgiaAuburn5.14.95.8
VanderbiltLSU-22.3-22.1-26.0
UCFTulsa15.718.419.0
North TexasSouthern Miss.-4.8-4.4-3.5
Mississippi St.Arkansas18.517.222.6
ClemsonVirginia19.721.023.7
S. AlabamaTroy-2.9-3.3-4.0
FBS vs. FCS
FBSFCSPiRate
Wake ForestCampbell29.9
LibertyN. Alabama24.0
ArmyAbilene Chr.27.5
Florida St.Jacksonville St.22.5

This Week’s PiRate Ratings

Note: This week’s ratings expand from 90 to 127 teams, the number now committed to playing in 2020. Only Old Dominion, Connecticut, and New Mexico St. are not playing.

#TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg.Conference
1Ohio St.131.3130.0134.3131.9BTen-E
2Clemson125.3126.5129.2127.0ACC
3Alabama122.0123.2123.9123.0SEC-W
4Penn St.122.2121.0122.8122.0BTen-E
5Wisconsin122.5119.9123.3121.9BTen-W
6Georgia121.8120.3122.5121.5SEC-E
7Florida120.6120.0121.4120.7SEC-E
8Notre Dame120.6119.9120.7120.4ACC
9L S U119.6118.8122.0120.1SEC-W
10Oregon119.5117.9119.3118.9P12-N
11Auburn118.7117.3118.7118.2SEC-W
12Oklahoma115.2114.8115.2115.1B12
13U S C116.2113.5115.2115.0P12-S
14Texas115.0113.5114.9114.5B12
15Texas A&M114.0114.0113.9114.0SEC-W
16UCF113.2113.9114.5113.9AAC
17Minnesota112.3113.2114.4113.3BTen-W
18N. Carolina112.5113.2113.9113.2ACC
19Iowa112.3112.0114.1112.8BTen-W
20Oklahoma St.113.1112.3112.9112.8B12
21Michigan112.3111.6114.2112.7BTen-E
22Virginia Tech111.0111.3113.1111.8ACC
23Miss. St.111.2110.7113.1111.7SEC-W
24Kentucky110.8111.0111.9111.2SEC-E
25Tennessee110.5110.3111.1110.6SEC-E
26Miami (Fla.)109.4112.1109.9110.5ACC
27Indiana109.4110.0111.8110.4BTen-E
28Baylor110.0110.2110.3110.2B12
29BYU110.5109.6110.2110.1Ind.
30Washington110.2108.9110.9110.0P12-N
31Cincinnati110.2109.3109.9109.8AAC
32Utah109.3108.9110.0109.4P12-S
33Memphis109.6108.5108.8109.0AAC
34Nebraska108.0107.6109.5108.4BTen-W
35S. Carolina109.3107.1108.6108.3SEC-E
36Iowa St.108.6107.6108.4108.2B12
37Virginia108.1108.0108.0108.1ACC
38California107.5107.7107.8107.7P12-N
39Arizona St.107.8107.4107.8107.6P12-S
40Louisville107.7108.0106.5107.4ACC
41Boise St.107.3107.1106.8107.1MWC-M
42Kansas St.107.3106.1107.4106.9B12
43Purdue105.9106.8107.2106.6BTen-W
44Pittsburgh105.0106.8105.3105.7ACC
45Louisiana105.1104.5104.8104.8SUN-W
46Washington St.104.8103.5105.9104.7P12-N
47T C U105.5103.0105.4104.7B12
48Ole Miss104.9103.5104.9104.4SEC-W
49Northwestern103.5103.4106.1104.4BTen-W
50Illinois104.1103.5105.1104.2BTen-W
51Stanford105.0102.5104.2103.9P12-N
52Houston105.0103.1103.4103.8AAC
53Michigan St.102.9102.7103.4103.0BTen-E
54Oregon St.103.0103.3101.8102.7P12-N
55SMU102.5102.3101.9102.3AAC
56Appal. St.102.3101.2103.0102.2SUN-E
57W. Virginia101.9101.8102.0101.9B12
58Boston Coll.101.6101.3101.4101.4ACC
59Florida St.101.8100.1101.4101.1ACC
60U C L A102.2100.7100.3101.1P12-S
61Arizona101.499.7100.4100.5P12-S
62Marshall100.9100.5100.0100.4CUSA
63Missouri100.0100.1101.2100.4SEC-E
64Air Force99.7100.799.9100.1MWC-M
65Texas Tech99.798.4100.199.4B12
66Wake Forest98.499.098.198.5ACC
67Duke98.698.697.698.2ACC
68Tulsa99.697.597.598.2AAC
69Tulane98.598.297.498.0AAC
70Wyoming97.098.698.498.0MWC-M
71Navy99.197.197.197.8AAC
72Colorado97.899.195.797.5P12-S
73Buffalo96.797.397.697.2MAC-E
74Arkansas St.96.397.796.296.7SUN-W
75San Diego St.95.997.296.896.6MWC-W
76Temple96.597.295.896.5AAC
77Syracuse95.597.196.196.3ACC
78U A B95.896.495.595.9CUSA
79Georgia Tech96.295.395.095.5ACC
80Rutgers96.494.994.495.2BTen-E
81Vanderbilt95.795.294.595.2SEC-E
82Ohio94.395.196.095.1MAC-E
83W. Kentucky94.695.595.295.1CUSA
84Florida Int’l.95.194.895.495.1CUSA
85Arkansas95.296.193.094.8SEC-W
86Maryland95.194.993.694.5BTen-E
87NC State94.494.494.694.5ACC
88Hawaii94.894.793.894.4MWC-W
89Georgia Sou.93.794.595.094.4SUN-E
90Army93.495.293.594.1Ind.
91Miami (O)94.793.294.093.9MAC-E
92Fresno St.93.393.792.993.3MWC-W
93Utah St.93.593.092.993.1MWC-M
94Central Mich.93.292.793.393.1MAC-W
95Coastal Car.92.492.792.792.6SUN-E
96Ball St.92.691.993.092.5MAC-W
97E. Carolina92.792.991.492.3AAC
98Colorado St.91.192.191.291.5MWC-M
99Nevada90.691.191.191.0MWC-W
100Liberty89.692.490.490.8Ind.
101USF91.890.189.790.5AAC
102Western Mich.89.191.290.490.2MAC-W
103Kent St.90.189.489.589.7MAC-E
104San Jose St.89.291.088.589.6MWC-W
105Georgia St.89.789.389.789.6SUN-E
106Toledo88.589.788.088.7MAC-W
107Troy88.089.488.488.6SUN-E
108La. Tech87.388.688.488.1CUSA
109Charlotte87.087.087.487.2CUSA
110Rice86.884.386.185.7CUSA
111Kansas86.085.884.585.5B12
112Southern Miss.84.284.482.983.8CUSA
113U N L V83.585.083.083.8MWC-W
114S. Alabama83.684.683.083.7SUN-W
115N. Illinois82.884.683.283.6MAC-W
116New Mexico83.684.382.483.4MWC-M
117Eastern Mich.82.484.582.883.2MAC-W
118Fla. Atlantic81.983.181.982.3CUSA
119Texas St.81.882.580.581.6SUN-W
120Miami (O)80.781.180.280.7CUSA
121North Texas77.978.577.878.1CUSA
122U T S A77.978.077.577.8CUSA
123UL-Monroe75.275.073.374.5SUN-W
124Bowling Green74.476.170.673.7MAC-E
125Akron73.175.571.573.4MAC-E
126U T E P68.370.967.969.0CUSA
127Mass.64.171.262.065.8Ind.

PiRate Ratings By Conference

American Athletic Conference
East Division
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg
UCF113.2113.9114.5113.9
Cincinnati110.2109.3109.9109.8
Memphis109.6108.5108.8109.0
Houston105.0103.1103.4103.8
SMU102.5102.3101.9102.3
Tulsa99.697.597.598.2
Tulane98.598.297.498.0
Navy99.197.197.197.8
Temple96.597.295.896.5
E. Carolina92.792.991.492.3
USF91.890.189.790.5
AAC Avg.101.7100.9100.7101.1
Atlantic Coast Conference
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg
Clemson125.3126.5129.2127.0
Notre Dame120.6119.9120.7120.4
N. Carolina112.5113.2113.9113.2
Virginia Tech111.0111.3113.1111.8
Miami (Fla.)109.4112.1109.9110.5
Virginia108.1108.0108.0108.1
Louisville107.7108.0106.5107.4
Pittsburgh105.0106.8105.3105.7
Boston Coll.101.6101.3101.4101.4
Florida St.101.8100.1101.4101.1
Wake Forest98.499.098.198.5
Duke98.698.697.698.2
Syracuse95.597.196.196.3
Georgia Tech96.295.395.095.5
NC State94.494.494.694.5
ACC Avg.105.7106.1106.0106.0
Big 12 Conference
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg
Oklahoma115.2114.8115.2115.1
Texas115.0113.5114.9114.5
Oklahoma St.113.1112.3112.9112.8
Baylor110.0110.2110.3110.2
Iowa St.108.6107.6108.4108.2
Kansas St.107.3106.1107.4106.9
T C U105.5103.0105.4104.7
W. Virginia101.9101.8102.0101.9
Texas Tech99.798.4100.199.4
Kansas86.085.884.585.5
Big 12 Avg.106.2105.4106.1105.9
Big Ten Conference
East Division
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAverage
Ohio St.131.3130.0134.3131.9
Penn St.122.2121.0122.8122.0
Michigan112.3111.6114.2112.7
Indiana109.4110.0111.8110.4
Michigan St.102.9102.7103.4103.0
Rutgers96.494.994.495.2
Maryland95.194.993.694.5
West Division
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAverage
Wisconsin122.5119.9123.3121.9
Minnesota112.3113.2114.4113.3
Iowa112.3112.0114.1112.8
Nebraska108.0107.6109.5108.4
Purdue105.9106.8107.2106.6
Northwestern103.5103.4106.1104.4
Illinois104.1103.5105.1104.2
Big Ten Avg.109.9109.4111.0110.1
Conference USA
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg
Marshall100.9100.5100.0100.4
U A B95.896.495.595.9
W. Kentucky94.695.595.295.1
Florida Int’l.95.194.895.495.1
La. Tech87.388.688.488.1
Charlotte87.087.087.487.2
Rice86.884.386.185.7
Southern Miss.84.284.482.983.8
Fla. Atlantic81.983.181.982.3
Middle Tenn.80.781.180.280.7
North Texas77.978.577.878.1
U T S A77.978.077.577.8
U T E P68.370.967.969.0
CUSA Avg.86.086.485.986.1
FBS Independents
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg
BYU110.5109.6110.2110.1
Army93.495.293.594.1
Liberty89.692.490.490.8
Mass.64.171.262.065.8
Ind. Avg.89.492.189.090.2
Mid-American Conference
East Division
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg
Buffalo96.797.397.697.2
Ohio94.395.196.095.1
Miami (O)94.793.294.093.9
Kent St.90.189.489.589.7
Bowling Green74.476.170.673.7
Akron73.175.571.573.4
West Division
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg
Central Mich.93.292.793.393.1
Ball St.92.691.993.092.5
Western Mich.89.191.290.490.2
Toledo88.589.788.088.7
N. Illinois82.884.683.283.6
Eastern Mich.82.484.582.883.2
MAC Avg.87.688.487.587.9
Mountain West Conference
Mountain Division
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg
Boise St.107.3107.1106.8107.1
Air Force99.7100.799.9100.1
Wyoming97.098.698.498.0
Utah St.93.593.092.993.1
Colorado St.91.192.191.291.5
New Mexico83.684.382.483.4
West Division
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg
San Diego St.95.997.296.896.6
Hawaii94.894.793.894.4
Fresno St.93.393.792.993.3
Nevada90.691.191.191.0
San Jose St.89.291.088.589.6
U N L V83.585.083.083.8
MWC Avg.93.394.093.193.5
Pac-12 Conference
North Division
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg
Oregon119.5117.9119.3118.9
Washington110.2108.9110.9110.0
California107.5107.7107.8107.7
Washington St.104.8103.5105.9104.7
Stanford105.0102.5104.2103.9
Oregon St.103.0103.3101.8102.7
South Division
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg
U S C116.2113.5115.2115.0
Utah109.3108.9110.0109.4
Arizona St.107.8107.4107.8107.6
U C L A102.2100.7100.3101.1
Arizona101.499.7100.4100.5
Colorado97.899.195.797.5
P12 Avg.107.1106.1106.6106.6
Southeastern Conference
East Division
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg
Georgia121.8120.3122.5121.5
Florida120.6120.0121.4120.7
Kentucky110.8111.0111.9111.2
Tennessee110.5110.3111.1110.6
S. Carolina109.3107.1108.6108.3
Missouri100.0100.1101.2100.4
Vanderbilt95.795.294.595.2
West Division
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg
Alabama122.0123.2123.9123.0
L S U119.6118.8122.0120.1
Auburn118.7117.3118.7118.2
Texas A&M114.0114.0113.9114.0
Miss. St.111.2110.7113.1111.7
Ole Miss104.9103.5104.9104.4
Arkansas95.296.193.094.8
SEC Avg.111.0110.5111.5111.0
Sunbelt Conference
East Division
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg
Appal. St.102.3101.2103.0102.2
Georgia Sou.93.794.595.094.4
Coastal Car.92.492.792.792.6
Georgia St.89.789.389.789.6
Troy88.089.488.488.6
West Division
TeamPiRateMeanBiasAvg
Louisiana105.1104.5104.8104.8
Arkansas St.96.397.796.296.7
S. Alabama83.684.683.083.7
Texas St.81.882.580.581.6
UL-Monroe75.275.073.374.5
Sun Avg.90.891.190.790.9

Conference Ratings

#LeagueAvg
1SEC111.0
2BTen110.1
3P12106.6
4ACC106.0
5B12105.9
6AAC101.1
7MWC93.5
8Sun90.9
9Ind.90.2
10MAC87.9
11CUSA86.1

This Week’s College TV Schedule

Friday, October 2
Time ETNetworkHomeVisitorsEntertainment Value
7:00 PMACCNWake ForestCampbellNot Much reason to watch unless you just must
9:00 PMESPN2BYULa. TechTwo undefeated teams that can move the ball
Saturday, October 3
Time ETNetworkHomeVisitorsEntertainment Value
12:00 PMESPN2Coastal CarolinaArkansas St.Ak St. beat the team that beat Oklahoma
12:00 PMABCWest VirginiaBaylorBig 12 needs big team to step up–Can BU be it?
12:00 PMESPNUGeorgia St.East CarolinaShould be a competitive game with lots of offense
12:00 PMSECNTennesseeMissouriVols looking to build on momentum
12:00 PMACCNPittsburghNC StatePanthers looking to go 3-0 for the 1st time since 2014
12:00 PMESPNFloridaS. CarolinaGators’ offense looked great, but D not so much
12:00 PMFoxTexasTCUHorns escaped with miracle win. Need to convince.
12:30 PMStadiumUABUTSABlazers clearly the better team
1:30 PMCBSSNArmyAbilene Chr.Black Knights could rush for 400+
3:30 PMESPN2SMUMemphisA sneaky great game could see 80+ total points
3:30 PMABCBoston CollegeNorth CarolinaMaybe the best of the daytime games
3:30 PMESPNKansasOklahoma St.If Cowboys don’t win convincingly, Big 12 is sick
3:30 PMCBSAlabamaTexas A&MBoth teams held back last game to reserve for this one
3:30 PMFS1Kansas St.Texas TechInteresting game–Big winner vs. Tragic loser
4:00 PMESPNUFla. AtlanticCharlotteOne of the more dull games this week
4:00 PMSECNKentuckyOle MissLoser in big hole at 0-2–should be hard-fought game
4:00 PMACCNDukeVirginia TechTech won missing 23 players incl. #1 QB
6:00 PMCBSSNAir ForceNavyAlways a great game. AFA only MWC team to play
7:30 PMSECN-AMiss. StateArkansasAir Leach could hang half a hundred on Arky
7:30 PMESPNGeorgiaAuburnBest overall game of the day–who is #2 in SEC?
7:30 PMSECNVanderbiltLSULSU defense will be much improved this week
7:30 PMABCIowa St.OklahomaLustre knocked off this game as both teams have a loss
7:30 PMESPN2UCFTulsaUCF tries to remain top G5 team
7:30 PMStadiumNorth TexasSouthern Miss.Weakest game on the TV slate this week
8:00 PMESPNUS.AlabamaTroyNot much reason to watch outside of Alabama
8:00 PMACCNClemsonVirginiaCU should win by 17 or more, but UVa is not a pushover

February 25, 2020

PiRate Ratings College Basketball For February 25, 2020

Tuesday’s Games

 

Home

Visitor

Spread

Auburn

Ole Miss

9.3

Ball St.

Western Michigan

11.0

Baylor

Kansas St.

16.0

Bowling Green

Akron

-3.3

Central Michigan

Toledo

0.6

Davidson

La Salle

10.8

Eastern Michigan

Northern Illinois

2.6

George Mason

Dayton

-12.9

Georgia Tech

Clemson

3.0

Iowa St.

TCU

4.5

Kent St.

Miami (O)

10.2

Loyola (Chi.)

Drake

7.9

Michigan St.

Iowa

7.2

Mississippi St.

Alabama

2.0

North Carolina

North Carolina St.

-0.6

Ohio

Buffalo

-0.6

Oklahoma

Texas Tech

-1.2

San Diego St.

Colorado St.

14.6

SMU

Memphis

0.5

Texas A&M

Kentucky

-7.4

Tulsa

Tulane

10.7

Utah St.

San Jose St.

21.8

Valparaiso

Missouri St.

1.8

Wake Forest

Duke

-12.6

Wyoming

Nevada

-10.8

Xavier

DePaul

7.3

 

Key TV Games On Tuesday 

 

Time (EST)

Network

Home

Visitor

7:00 PM

ESPN

Texas A&M

Kentucky

7:00 PM

ESPN2

Michigan St.

Iowa

7:00 PM

ESPN+

Bowling Green

Akron

9:00 PM

ESPN2

Oklahoma

Texas Tech

9:00 PM

CBSSN

SMU

Memphis

9:00 PM

SECN

Mississippi St.

Alabama

 

 

 

September 18, 2019

PiRate Ratings Picks For September 19-23, 2019

Well, hello there.  Welcome to the worst sports picks on the Internet in 2019.  These last two weeks have been so monumentally terrible, that one must go back to 1982 to find a worse two weeks for our selections.  Why have we gone from so good in 2018 to so rotten this year?  If we only knew the answer to that question.

One thing we noticed is that our parlays have been 67% correct, or in other words, we are hitting on all but one game in each parlay.  Or, in other words, if we had re-arranged our picks, we could have in theory won well over half of these selections.  There’s the rub.  When you pick parlays, you have to be 100% right to win your parlay.

We have decided to stick with what has worked for us in the past and hope to improve enough to get back into the black before the end of the year.  It’s going to be a tough hill to climb, but we issue our selections without any stress.

Why is this stress free?  We NEVER wager real money on our selections.  We are in this for fun, and we have always advised you to do the same.  Even in years where our picks would have in theory returned you more than 40% on your investment, we never took ourselves seriously enough to have faith in these choices.

You have had your weekly forewarning.  DO NOT WAGER REAL MONEY ON THESE PICKS!

Odds as of 2:00 PM EDT on Wednesday, September 18

 

Selection #1: 10-point Teaser, 3 teams at 10-12

 

Houston + 15 1/2 vs. Tulane

Boston College +3 vs. Rutgers

Louisiana-Monroe +29 vs. Iowa St.

 

Selection #2: 10-point Teaser, 3 teams at 10-12

 

Northwestern +19 1/2 vs. Michigan St.

TCU + 1/2 vs. SMU

Wyoming +13 1/2 vs. Tulsa

 

Selection #3: 10-point Teaser, 3 teams at 10-12

 

New Mexico St. +15 vs. New Mexico

Oklahoma St. +15 1/2 vs. Texas

Nevada -4 1/2 vs. UTEP

 

Selection #4: 10-point Teaser, 3 teams at 10-12

 

Jacksonville + 11 1/2 vs. Tennessee

Green Bay +2 vs. Denver

Cincinnati +16 vs. Buffalo

 

Selection #5: 10-point Teaser, 3 teams at 10-12

 

Carolina +7 1/2 vs. Arizona

Seattle +6 vs. New Orleans

San Francisco +3 1/2 vs. Pittsburgh

 

Selection #6: 10-point Teaser, 3 teams at 10-12

 

Tennessee & Jacksonville OVER 29

New England & NY Jets OVER 33 1/2

Dallas & Miami UNDER 57 1/2

 

Selection #7: Money Line Parlay, 2 teams at +152

 

Syracuse over Western Michigan

North Carolina over Appalachian St.

 

Selection #8: Money Line Parlay, 3 teams at +137

 

Louisiana Tech over Florida Int’l.

TCU over SMU

Arizona St. over Colorado

 

Selection #9: Money Line Parlay, 3 teams at +180

 

Boston College over Rutgers

Texas A&M over Auburn

UAB over South Alabama

 

Davey19

The experimental Davey19 model took it on the chin as well last week, and it went into the red for the season.  This week, we double-checked the information to make sure we interpreted the statistical data correctly, and it looks like we made no mistakes in the calculations last week.  The picks just plain stunk.

 

Here are Davey19’s selections as we play it a little more conservatively.

 

  1. Stanford & Oregon UNDER 58 1/2

  2. Air Force & Boise St. UNDER 55

  3. Northwestern +9 1/2 vs. Michigan St.

  4. Illinois +13 1/2 vs. Nebraska

  5. Ole Miss -2 vs. California

October 24, 2018

PiRate Ratings Selections for October 25-29, 2018

After a successful week of picking, the PiRates are going heavy with 10-point and 13-point teaser selections this week.  Last week, our teasers were 8-2 against the spread, but that still didn’t get us out of the hole we dug the prior couple of weeks.

Leading the way for our Land Sharps last week, Stewed Meat went 6-1 to get back on the plus side of 52.5%, the break even point when selecting games at 11-10 odds.  Once again, all 5 Land Sharps are above the 52.5% level.

When the Sharps each sent in their picks, it looked to us like this is going to be a tough week.  The last week before the Autumn winds of November come into play can be a tough one to call.  It seems like favorites cover better this week than they do in any month in November.  Maybe injury attrition and just plain old bumps and bruises begin to affect the games more, and obviously inclement weather begins to play a part in games.  We actually saw some snow at the Wisconsin-Illinois game last week.  When the temperatures drop into the sub-freezing zone, the ball doesn’t feel the same way it does when it’s 70 degrees.  It becomes harder to throw, catch, kick, or hold onto when being hit by opposing players.

The Land Sharps

1. Buckeye Michelle–Season: 20-13-1 60.6% ROI: 16.8%

Virginia Tech  -2.5 vs. Georgia Tech

Georgia -6.5 vs. Florida

USC -6.5 vs. Arizona St.

 

2. Cal Gal Tiffany–Season: 24-17-0  58.5%  ROI: 12.9%

Arkansas +1.5 vs. Vanderbilt

USC -6.5 vs. Arizona St.

Stanford -3 vs. Washington St.

 

3. Friday Dog 13–Season: 22-16-1  57.9%  ROI: 11.3%

Clemson -16.5 vs. Florida St.

Washington -11.5 vs. California

Oklahoma -24.5 vs. Kansas St.

Notre Dame -23.5 vs. Navy

Colorado -24 vs. Oregon St.

 

4. Dean615–Season: 17-13-1  56.7%  ROI: 8.7%

Notre Dame -23.5 vs. Navy

Iowa +6.5 vs. Penn St.

Boston College +3.5 vs, Miami (Fla.)

Michigan St. -2.5 vs. Purdue

Pittsburgh +3 vs. Duke

Wisconsin -7 vs. Northwestern

Texas A&M +2.5 vs. Mississippi St.

 

5. Stewed Meat–25-20-0  55.6%  ROI: 6.7%

Western Michigan -6.5 vs. Toledo

Georgia Southern +8.5 vs. Appalachian St.

Coastal Carolina -3.5 vs. Georgia St.

Louisiana +3 vs. Arkansas St.

Florida Int’l. -3.5 vs. Western Kentucky

 

The PiRate Ratings

College 10-point 
Teasers 3 Games @11-10
Favorite Underdog Spread Pick
Toledo Western Michigan 3.5 Western Michigan
Georgia Tech Virginia Tech 7.5 Virginia Tech
Appalachian St. Georgia Southern 18.5 Georgia Southern
Favorite Underdog Spread Pick
Vanderbilt Arkansas 11.5 Arkansas
Duke Pittsburgh 12.5 Pittsburgh
Utah St. New Mexico 30.5 New Mexico
Favorite Underdog Spread Pick
North Carolina Virginia 1 Virginia
Georgia Florida 17 Florida
Arizona St. USC 3.5 USC
Favorite Underdog Spread Pick
Maryland Illinois 8 Maryland
Washington California 1.5 Washington
UAB UTEP 6 UAB
Favorite Underdog Spread Pick
Penn St. Iowa 16.5 Iowa
Arkansas St. Louisiana 13 Louisiana
Syracuse North Carolina St. 7.5 North Carolina St.
Favorite Underdog Spread Pick
Mississippi St. Texas A&M 12.5 Texas A&M
Western Kentucky Florida Int’l. 6.5 Florida Int’l.
Arizona Oregon 0.5 Oregon
College 13-point 
Teasers 4 Games @13-10
Favorite Underdog Spread Pick
Miami (Fla.) Boston College 16.5 Boston College
Minnesota Indiana 10.5 Indiana
Oklahoma St. Texas 9.5 Texas
San Diego St. Nevada 16 Nevada
NFL 10-point 
Teasers 3 Games @11-10
Favorite Underdog Spread Pick
N. Y. Jets Chicago 3 Chicago
Cleveland Pittsburgh 2 Pittsburgh
N.Y. Giants Washington 9 Washington
Favorite Underdog Spread Pick
Kansas City Denver Pk Kansas City
Baltimore Carolina 12 Carolina
New Orleans Minnesota 11 Minnesota
Favorite Underdog Spread Pick
Green Bay L.A. Rams 1 L.A. Rams
New England Buffalo 4 New England
Arizona San Francisco 11 San Francisco
 

NFL 13-point 

 

Teaser

 

4 games

 

@13-10

Team 1 Team 2 Total Pick
Houston Miami 31 Over
Kansas City Denver 41.5 Over
Pittsburgh Cleveland 63.5 Under
Washington N.Y. Giants 29 Over

 

March 22, 2018

PiRate Ratings Spreads For NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 Games of Thursday, March 22

Higher Seed Lower Seed Spread
Nevada Loyola (IL) 2.7
Michigan Texas A&M 2.5
Kentucky Kansas St. 4.4
Gonzaga Florida St. 5.0

Thursday Night’s TV Schedule

Thursday, Mar 22, 2018
TIME Higher Seed Lower Seed City TV
7:07 PM 7 Nevada 11 Loyola (Chi.) Atlanta CBS
7:37 PM 3 Michigan 7 Texas A&M Los Angeles TBS
9:37 PM 5 Kentucky 9 Kansas St. Atlanta CBS
10:07 PM 4 Gonzaga 9 Florida St. Los Angeles TBS

We’ve All Busted

What a year to debut a new bracket-picking trial!  How can we tell if this criteria has any credibility when nobody in the world can show any formula or any human picking ability that would have worked in the first two rounds.

Tonight, there will be no one-seeds or two-seeds playing.  Michigan is the only three-seed playing tonight.  Instead, we will see a seven, two nines, and an 11-seed in action.  Then, on Saturday either Nevada or Loyola will be playing for a spot in the Final Four.

Things will get a tad less crazy tomorrow night when two ones and two twos play, but in only one case is a Sweet 16 game going to have the two teams the seeding process believed should be there.

All is not lost.  We still have three of our four predicted Final Four teams alive, including the team we believe would win the National Championship.

Here is a look at the PiRate Ratings 2018 Criteria for the Sweet 16.

Team Power W-L Scr TS% Diff R+T SOS
Clemson Y 25-9 74-66 6.68 7.9 59.83
Duke Y 28-7 85-69 10.11 21.7 60.69
Florida St. Y 22-11 81-74 4.18 10.6 58.79
Gonzaga Y 32-4 84-68 9.37 22.6 53.89
Kansas Y 29-7 81-71 8.34 5.4 61.30
Kansas St. Y 24-11 72-67 3.69 0.9 59.08
Kentucky Y 26-10 77-71 5.38 12.3 60.66
Loyola (Chi.) Y 30-5 72-62 9.82 6.7 51.44
Michigan Y 30-7 74-63 5.43 10.0 59.52
Nevada Y 29-7 83-73 5.97 6.4 55.05
Purdue Y 30-6 81-65 11.43 10.5 59.31
Syracuse Y 22-13 67-64 1.55 11.3 58.92
Texas A&M Y 22-12 75-70 4.73 12.9 61.02
Texas Tech Y 26-9 75-65 5.15 14.5 59.89
Villanova Y 32-4 88-76 10.18 13.1 60.33
West Virginia Y 26-10 80-69 0.66 16.9 60.59

Immediately, we can see one very consistent pattern here.  All of the Sweet 16 teams come from what we call the “Power Conferences.”  A Power Conference is one in which the overall league RPI is one of the top 12.  The Missouri Valley, Mountain West, and West Coast Conferences rank in the top 12, so really, there are no completely surprise teams.  We just failed to hit on these regular season champions of these leagues.  We may have to add a caveat in the future that when the regular season champion of one of these leagues makes the tournament to watch out for them as an underdog, because in most cases, they have been seeded incorrectly.

Loyola, Nevada, and Gonzaga did not look like they were fluke wins in the two rounds.  Loyola’s defense and intelligent half-court offense looked a lot like Butler during their back-to-back runs to the Final Four.  Gonzaga should be no surprise by now.  They are to this generation what UNLV and Marquette were to the 1970’s.  Nevada should have been no surprise, as we have only lauded Coach Eric Musselman as the best men’s basketball coach since about December of 2016.  How he orchestrated a couple of wins this past weekend with a six-man roster is incredible, and he did it against Cincinnati with multiple players in early foul trouble.  We hear that he is on the radar for other jobs that could bring him quite a jump in salary, but we believe that he is more likely to return to the NBA before taking another college position.

Looking at the data above, 15 of the 16 teams look like they belong in the Sweet 16.  Kansas State is the lone outlier, but look at how they got here from the previous round.  They became the first team ever to face a 16-seed in the Round of 32, and the Wildcats almost didn’t beat UMBC.

We have delayed this report where we preview all eight games in the Sweet 16, as we feverishly try to discover if certain injured players will be able to contribute in any way.  Tops on that list is Purdue’s Isaac Haas.  Who says that sports cannot expand the minds of our youth today?  The entire Purdue University Engineering department, professors and students, have been hard at work trying to create an NCAA-approved sleeve to protect Hass’s shattered elbow, and they have a deadline fast approaching.  It isn’t exactly finding a way to bring home Apollo 13, but it’s still an honorable task that could help dozens of Millenials develop some confidence and resume-building gold.

Kentucky’s Jarred Vanderbilt could conceivably play a few minutes here and there tonight against Kansas St., but it is more likely that he will be held out in order to possibly contribute a little more if the Wildcats make it to the Elite 8.

Then, there is Nevada.  How does a team get outrebounded by 15 boards, force just seven turnovers, and make just six, 3-pointers and win a Round of 32 game?  How does this same team get behind by 22 points, see three players on a roster of just six get in early foul trouble, and still come from behind to beat a top 10 team?

Maybe Mariah Musselman is just as powerful as Sister Jean.  Of course, one of these two will see the magic come to an end tonight.  This will be a game that looks more like a chess match between two geniuses than a racehorse up and down affair.  It should be tense for 40 minutes.

Out in Los Angeles, the Michigan-Texas A&M game is intriguing.  Michigan’s new inside presence on both sides of the floor has made the Wolverines better able to face the power teams, while their outside game is still strong.  Can the Aggies use a little superior quickness in this game to lead to a repeat performance of their Round of 32 dismantling of the Tar Heels?  Michigan’s defense will be a tad more difficult to solve than North Carolina’s, and this game should be exciting to the final few possessions.

On paper, the final game of the night looks like a potential mismatch, but in this wacky season, it wouldn’t be much of a surprise if the underdog wins.

It’s time to preview all eight Sweet 16 games.  We will talk more about Friday’s games on Friday morning.

Nevada vs. Loyola (Chi.)

Team Power W-L Scr TS% Diff R+T SOS
Nevada Y 29-7 83-73 5.97 6.4 55.05
Loyola (Chi.) Y 30-5 72-62 9.82 6.7 51.44
             
Team Reb Stl Opp Stl TO TS% Def TS%
Nevada -0.64 6.11 4.42 3.08 58.4 52.4
Loyola (Chi.) 1.49 6.51 6.43 0.94 60.2 50.4

Loyola does not force turnovers, but the Ramblers also do not commit many.  While being a decent rebounding team, they do not control the boards, which is Nevada’s Kryptonite.  So, neither team will really exploit the other’s weakness.This is an excellent chess game according to the criteria results.  Nevada needs to force turnovers or at least commit very few to be successful.  They beat Cincinnati by committing just two turnovers in the entire game in Nashville!

Looking at true shooting percentage margin and schedule strength, once again, these two factors cancel out each other.

It comes down to which team can handle a little adversity early in the second half and then make maybe one run.  Think of a classic horse race, where you have a bunch of horses that come from just off the pace and have one run in them.  Which horse will get the perfect trip and be in position to cross the line first?

We admit that we have no sure statistic to look at and say that our choice is solid.  Nevada surely cannot keep playing a rotation of six players and not suffer fatigue.  Loyola cannot expect to keep winning without being able to score a bevy of cheap baskets as the competition gets tougher by the round.

We are going to go with the PiRate Ratings chalk in this one, since we have no other data to rely on to make this pick.  The PiRate Ratings favors the Wolf Pack by 2.7 points, so our pick is: NEVADA

 

Michigan vs. Texas A&M

Team Power W-L Scr TS% Diff R+T SOS
Michigan Y 30-7 74-63 5.43 10.0 59.52
Texas A&M Y 22-12 75-70 4.73 12.9 61.02
             
Team Reb Stl Opp Stl TO TS% Def TS%
Michigan 0.73 6.14 4.11 3.54 56.5 51.1
Texas A&M 6.56 5.50 6.35 -2.65 53.9 49.2

We could almost copy and paste the information from the prior game into this section and just change the names.  Once again, we have a team (Michigan) that is excellent in turnover margin against a top-flight schedule, but that has at times been exploited on the boards, while Texas A&M dominates on the glass but suffers in turnover margin against a slightly stronger schedule.  The teams are about equal in true shooting percentage margin, with the exception that the Wolverine’s advantage tilts a little more toward superior offense, while the Aggies’ advantage tilts a little more toward superior defense.

We are going to make an unscientific assumption about this game, so please feel free to consider it a load of hooey.  We have looked through our mother of pearl shells and think we foresee a tense start of this game, where the team that can get in trouble with turnover margin will be a bit tight, and the Aggies will either turn the ball over a bit too much in the first half or play not to make mistakes and then shoot much lower than their normal percentage, even missing some close-in shots that they hardly ever miss.

Thus,  our wacky belief is that Michigan will get the early lead and then fight the rest of the night to keep it, once A&M starts to lose the tension.  We’ll go with Coach John Beilein to guide the Maize and Blue back to another Elite 8 appearance.  Our Pick: MICHIGAN

 

Kentucky vs. Kansas St.

Team Power W-L Scr TS% Diff R+T SOS
Kentucky Y 26-10 77-71 5.38 12.3 60.66
Kansas St. Y 24-11 72-67 3.69 0.9 59.08
             
Team Reb Stl Opp Stl TO TS% Def TS%
Kentucky 5.06 5.64 5.56 -1.08 55.7 50.3
Kansas St. -3.00 7.86 5.77 2.71 56.7 53.0

This actually isn’t the most important Kentucky-Kansas State game in the schools’ histories.  These two Wildcats faced off 67 years ago, minus five days, for the 1951 National Championship on the campus of the University of Minnesota.  Adolph Rupp’s Kentucky squad won his third national title in four years, but it was a close game until late.

Back to the present time.  This game looks on the surface to be rather one-sided.  Kentucky, even without Jarred Vanderbilt, looks a bit too strong for Kansas State.

Hey, did you notice that this makes three out of three games, where one team has the superior rebounding edge, and the other has an equally superior turnover edge?  The difference in this game and the other two is that Kansas State’s advantages are almost nil.  Their R+T Rating is just barely positive, and in our past years relying on R+T, we cannot remember any team with a rating as low as 0.9 ever making the Elite 8.  Because Kentucky’s R+T Rating is 12.3, Coach John Calipari’s Cats will be expected to receive about 11 more cheap scoring opportunities.  When you factor in that Kentucky also has a minor true shooting percentage margin edge, this leads us to forecast a double-digit Kentucky win tonight.  Our pick: KENTUCKY 

 

Gonzaga vs. Florida St.

Team Power W-L Scr TS% Diff R+T SOS
Gonzaga Y 32-4 84-68 9.37 22.6 53.89
Florida St. Y 22-11 81-74 4.18 10.6 58.79
             
Team Reb Stl Opp Stl TO TS% Def TS%
Gonzaga 8.75 6.36 5.06 0.97 59.8 50.4
Florida St. 2.85 6.88 5.85 1.30 56.5 52.3

The underdog Seminoles look to have a fighting chance in this game due to their superior schedule strength.  Florida State does not have a serious exploitable flaw.  They just don’t have a major statistic that is a decisive asset.

Gonzaga has an incredible R+T rating that many Final Four teams in the past have possessed.  Their almost 10% true shooting percentage is also Final Fourish, as is their 16-point average margin of victory.  Teams seldom win by an average margin this high that cannot go on major runs at the right time.  It just isn’t easy to slowly pull away by a point here and there until the lead is past 15 points.  The number one event that usually leads a team deep into tournament play is the ability to have a big spurt at the right time, and Gonzaga is clearly the team that can do this tonight.

The way we see this game is that FSU will take an early lead in the first half, and then Gonzaga will go on its first of three or four scoring runs to grab the lead and then extend the lead to five or six by halftime.  Then, the Bulldogs will make their patented big run in the second half to put the game out of reach.  The Seminoles may make a valiant effort in the final minutes, but it will be too little, too late.  Our Pick: GONZAGA

 

Friday’s Games

Kansas vs. Clemson

Team Power W-L Scr TS% Diff R+T SOS
Kansas Y 29-7 81-71 8.34 5.4 61.30
Clemson Y 25-9 74-66 6.68 7.9 59.83
             
Team Reb Stl Opp Stl TO TS% Def TS%
Kansas 0.08 6.67 5.50 1.44 59.8 51.4
Clemson 2.44 5.65 5.74 -0.06 56.7 50.1

Most casual fans will look at this game and immediately dismiss it as a Jayhawk blowout win.  This is far from being the probable case.  This is a Kansas team with exploitable weaknesses not typical for a Bill Self production.  KU has an exceptional offense, but their defense is prone to lapses.  In a game where the action is fierce on the glass, the Jayhawks do not bring their usual centaurs to the fight.  Rebounding is a liability with this club.  KU doesn’t make up for this weakness with an exceptional turnover margin, but they do pick up a good number of steals that lead to fast break points.

Clemson and championships go hand-in-hand, just not in basketball.  This group of Tigers competed admirably in the ACC race this year, and they have an experienced backcourt.  While CU has an issue with turnovers, this liability will most likely not be used to KU’s advantage.  Clemson can rebound with competence, and the Tigers know how to stop their opponents from scoring just long enough to put a game away.

Only because of experience and a slightly more difficult schedule do we stick with the logical team in this one, but it will not be an easy victory, and it will almost assuredly be their last one of the season.  Our pick: KANSAS

Villanova vs. West Virginia

Team Power W-L Scr TS% Diff R+T SOS
Villanova Y 32-4 88-76 10.18 13.1 60.33
West Virginia Y 26-10 80-69 0.66 16.9 60.59
             
Team Reb Stl Opp Stl TO TS% Def TS%
Villanova 2.86 6.67 4.67 2.72 62.4 52.2
West Virginia 3.61 8.08 5.53 5.17 54.5 53.9

Finally, we get a game where the rebounding and turnover issue does not matter as much as in the other games.  Right away, that should tell you which way we think this game will go.  Press Virginia needs to score points off steals and stop the other team from scoring against the press by either forcing them to throw the ball away or by using up so much clock that they must shoot a low-percentage shot.

Villanova is built for press-breaking and scoring easy baskets once the press is broken.  We believe Coach Bob Huggins might have to call the press off if VU scores too many times on crips.

West Virginia just cannot win a finesse game against this team.  Villanova enjoys a commanding true shooting percentage margin advantage in this game, and we have seen WVU players throw up their share of bricks.  This game should eventually get out of hand, as the team that won the title two years ago makes it look like they could return to the Final Four this year.  Our pick: VILLANOVA

Duke vs. Syracuse

Team Power W-L Scr TS% Diff R+T SOS
Duke Y 28-7 85-69 10.11 21.7 60.69
Syracuse Y 22-13 67-64 1.55 11.3 58.92
             
Team Reb Stl Opp Stl TO TS% Def TS%
Duke 9.20 7.37 5.77 -0.66 59.0 48.9
Syracuse 3.69 7.08 6.11 0.50 51.8 50.2

If you are a Baby Boomer, you know doubt know that the campy TV version of Batman is the only real, legitimate production.  Those movies just capitalized on the great reputation of Adam West of blessed memory.

There was a double episode where Batman faced the Joker, where the going was tough, because the Joker created his own utility belt.  He hand sneezing powder in there.  He had hand-shocking buzzers in there.  He had a bevy of evil tricks to combat the Caped Crusaders.

You can see where this is going, can’t you?  The villainous Blue Devils have their own utility belt.  It is called the 2-3 zone, and early in its employment, it is beating the original one created by Bruce Wayne, aka Jim Boeheim.

The element of surprise disappears for the Cinderella Orangemen Friday.  The Duke Blue Devils know how to attack Syracuse’s defense, and they know how to employ their own utility belt 2-3 zone that for now is proving to be superior to Batman’s, er Syracuse’s.

Here’s the rub.  Duke can penetrate and score inside against Syracuse, something that Arizona State, TCU, and Michigan State could not do.  The Blue Devils have excellent perimeter shooters, and Syracuse will not be able to pack their defense in the paint.  Duke will get open three-pointers and also be able to initiate enough penetration to the point where the Orangemen will either have to give up easy 10-12 foot shots or challenge and become overly vulnerable to a very athletic and very big front line.

On the other side of the ball, Duke’s new 2-3 zone is much more athletic than the Syracuse zone.  At times, Duke makes this look more like a 3-2 drop zone, and we have seen the back line move up into an almost 4-1 look while still protecting the basket.

If you have been reading this site this year, then you know that we are sticking with the Blue Devils to cut down the nets in San Antonio.  The PiRate criteria says this game is a mismatch, and there is nothing we see that makes us think there is a reason not to expect a win by 15-20 points for Coach K’s Army.  Our pick: DUKE

Purdue vs. Texas Tech

Team Power W-L Scr TS% Diff R+T SOS
Purdue Y 30-6 81-65 11.43 10.5 59.31
Texas Tech Y 26-9 75-65 5.15 14.5 59.89
             
Team Reb Stl Opp Stl TO TS% Def TS%
Purdue 2.64 5.72 5.14 1.53 60.8 49.4
Texas Tech 4.11 7.26 5.97 2.57 55.8 50.6

This game would be an easy one to forecast if Isaac Haas were available and at least 80% of his usual self.  Purdue finally had the talent and playing style to make it to the Final Four, but losing Haas’s top-quality offensive efficiency really hurts the Boilermakers.

Texas Tech is a solid but not spectacular team. The Red Raiders are not the same team they were prior to Zach Smith’s injury.  TTU was 14-1 when Smith was lost for almost eight weeks.  They went 8-6 without him, and they only went 2-2 to close out the regular season once he returned nowhere near as effective as he had been.

Smith began to resemble his old self in the Stephen F. Austin game, and maybe he is coming back into form, where he can supplement his team by coming off the bench.  It is hard to recover that quickly from a broken foot, so it’s uncertain how many minutes he can play and stay effective.

At least Smith can play, which is more than we can say about Haas.  Purdue played courageously in their win over Butler.  Freshman giant Matt Haarms, took over for Haas at center, but there was a huge drop in talent between 7 foot 2 inch giants.  Haarms connected on just one shot from the field and seemed a bit stiff trying to play defense in the paint or pulling down rebounds.  It took a monumental outside shooting effort for the Boilermakers to win.

Texas Tech is a bigger force to beat without a principle weapon.  The Red Raiders will neutralize Purdue’s outside game with four competent perimeter defenders that will keep man-to-man pressure outside.

There may be one more win inside the Boilermaker Express, even if they have one less engine on the track.  Texas Tech doesn’t really have the fantastic inside presence to exploit Purdue’s loss of Haas, and Haarms just might come up with a better performance Friday night after having the first start jitters melted away.  He is going to play 30 minutes in this game, and he just might surprise some folks.  We think this game is a complete toss-up.  Our Pick: PURDUE

The NIT

The National Invitation Tournament used to be on equal footing with the NCAA Tournament.  There were some years where the NIT champion was decisively better than the NCAA Tournament champion.

Alas, those days are gone.  However, the NIT has proven to have a new usefulness.  Many experimental rules have been experimented with in this tournament, and this year, it has produced excellent results with rules that we believe should be implemented next year.

  1. The NIT is using four, 10-minute quarters rather than two, 20-minute halves.  This is not the first time that college basketball used quarters instead of halves.  It was tried in the 1950s.  We think that playing quarters and with the change in foul rules, it allows defenses to play more aggressively, knowing that they get a clean slate at the end of the first and third quarters.  Also, it doubles the amount of last possessions in the game, which leads to two more buzzer-beater opportunities, something great for the fans.
  2. The shot clock does not reset to 30 seconds on an offensive rebound.  It reset to just 20 seconds, which means teams cannot just throw the ball back to the outside and slowly run the offense again.  They must try to put the ball back up and score without resetting their offense.  This should lead in theory to about three or four more possessions in the game.

We here on the PiRate ship believe that fans do not want to pay exorbitant ticket prices to see dribbling exhibitions.  Action involves passing and moving, and anything that reduces dribbling can only be good for the game.  We’d like to see the closely guarded dribbling rule re-instated, where a player cannot dribble for five seconds while being guarded man-to-man without advancing toward the goal.  If this rule returned, it would force ball hogs to give up the ball within four seconds, and it would lead to more passing and more movement.  It might push average possessions back up to 75+ per game like it was when college basketball was its most exciting in the period between 1965 and 1975.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

October 31, 2016

College Football Ratings & Spreads For November 1-5, 2016

The College Football Playoff Committee doles out its first playoff ranking tomorrow, and it looks like their job became easy enough that they can come in late to the office. With losses to Baylor, West Virginia, and Nebraska, and wins by Clemson and Washington, four undefeated Power 5 Conference teams remain. Obviously, the first ranking will include Alabama, Michigan, Clemson, and Washington as its first quartet. There is some talk that Texas A&M should be in the mix, but including a one-loss SEC team over an unbeaten Washington, Michigan, or Clemson, would draw enough ire from the non-SEC football world that the committee would be barbecued in the media.

In the end, there is only one way to hold a proper playoff. The playoffs should be decided the same way they are decided in every sport that has a playoff–on the field. No committee should be needed to figure out which teams to invite. Politics should have no bearing on the process. It is obvious that if it comes down to it, a one-loss team like Ohio State, Alabama, or Clemson will always trump a one-loss team like Washington, Baylor, or Louisville.

The champions of the Power 5 conferences should receive automatic bids to an 8-team playoff. Or, the winners of the conference championship games should receive automatic bids. That would mean, until the Big 12 expanded to at least 12 teams and implemented a championship game, their conference would not receive an automatic bid. Also, no independent team could be eligible for the playoffs, so Notre Dame, BYU, Army, and U Mass would have to find a league or else never be eligible for a playoff spot.

As for the other three spots in the playoffs, take the Group of 5 and award the top conference champion overall, the sixth playoff spot. That would be Western Michigan as of now.  Of the remaining four conference champions, give them spots 7 through 10 and have them play a preliminary “play-in” round to earn the 7th and 8th spots in the playoffs.

Let’s take a look at this in action. First, the Big 12 would have to expand by at least two teams to retain their automatic bid status. For the sake of argument, let’s add Notre Dame and BYU as the 11th and 12th teams. Army and U Mass could go to Conference USA.

Imagine for a moment that these moves have occurred. Now, using what has happened so far this year, let’s say that Clemson wins the ACC, Alabama wins the SEC, Michigan wins the Big Ten, Oklahoma wins the Big 12, and Washington wins the Pac-12. Western Michigan goes 13-0 to win the MAC and become the best Group of 5 team. The remaining four Group of 5 Champions are South Florida in the AAC, Western Kentucky in CUSA, Troy in the Sun Belt, and San Diego State in the Mountain West.

In the preliminary round, #7 seed South Florida would host #10 seed Troy, while #8 seed San Diego State would host #9 seed Western Kentucky. Western Michigan would be the #6 seed; Oklahoma #5, Washington #4, Clemson #3, Michigan #2, and Alabama #1.

After the preliminary round, #1 Alabama would host the winner of the SDSU-WKU game; #2 Michigan would host the winner of the South Florida-Troy game; #3 Clemson would host #6 Western Michigan; and #4 Washington would host #5 Oklahoma.

The debate would revolve around teams like Troy and Western Kentucky getting spots in playoffs, even if they were just preliminary rounds. But, this is the same thing that happens in the NCAA Basketball Tournament, where the champion of the #31 conference tournament gets an automatic bid, while a top ten team that does not win their league’s conference tournament does not receive an automatic bid.

In the end, the NCAA will never implement such a plan, because fairness is not part of their plan. A fair profit is all that matters, so for now, the big powers will get the benefit of the doubt for financial reasons only.

This Week’s PiRate Ratings

PiRate Ratings
# Team PiRate Mean Bias Average
1 Alabama 135.9 129.1 135.8 133.6
2 Michigan 128.7 126.4 128.7 127.9
3 Washington 128.8 121.6 128.6 126.3
4 Louisville 127.2 122.5 127.1 125.6
5 Clemson 126.7 119.5 125.6 123.9
6 LSU 124.8 119.8 124.4 123.0
7 Auburn 123.7 121.2 123.9 122.9
8 Ohio St. 121.9 121.5 122.2 121.9
9 Oklahoma 120.9 119.4 120.6 120.3
10 Virginia Tech 119.1 117.7 119.5 118.8
11 Texas A&M 117.5 115.5 117.3 116.8
12 Florida St. 119.2 112.7 118.3 116.7
13 North Carolina 118.4 112.0 118.3 116.2
14 Colorado 117.5 113.0 117.3 116.0
15 Oklahoma St. 115.2 116.2 115.0 115.5
16 USC 117.7 112.9 115.5 115.4
17 Wisconsin 115.4 113.4 116.1 115.0
18 Florida 114.7 116.6 113.2 114.8
19 Tennessee 115.5 112.7 114.7 114.3
20 Baylor 113.8 114.3 114.2 114.1
21 Pittsburgh 115.1 111.4 114.3 113.6
22 Miami 115.7 110.0 115.0 113.6
23 Western Michigan 112.9 111.8 114.6 113.1
24 Stanford 114.6 108.6 114.0 112.4
25 Penn St. 112.0 113.2 111.4 112.2
26 Nebraska 113.2 110.2 113.1 112.2
27 Ole Miss 114.3 109.2 113.0 112.2
28 Washington St. 112.4 109.5 112.2 111.4
29 West Virginia 111.8 110.8 111.3 111.3
30 Iowa 112.1 109.5 111.9 111.2
31 Notre Dame 112.7 108.8 111.3 110.9
32 Texas 110.3 111.4 109.7 110.5
33 UCLA 110.2 108.7 109.5 109.5
34 Houston 109.3 108.2 110.7 109.4
35 Utah 111.7 106.2 110.1 109.3
36 Northwestern 110.4 106.4 109.4 108.7
37 South Florida 108.8 107.0 109.3 108.4
38 Arkansas 109.9 105.2 108.0 107.7
39 BYU 109.6 104.1 109.2 107.6
40 Georgia Tech 109.2 105.3 108.1 107.5
41 Georgia 107.8 107.4 106.9 107.4
42 Kansas St. 106.6 108.9 106.5 107.3
43 Mississippi St. 107.8 106.3 106.7 106.9
44 TCU 106.5 108.0 105.6 106.7
45 Boise St. 105.7 106.9 106.7 106.4
46 Oregon 107.1 105.3 106.3 106.2
47 San Diego St. 105.6 104.2 107.6 105.8
48 Minnesota 105.8 104.7 105.3 105.3
49 Western Kentucky 105.5 102.9 106.8 105.1
50 Temple 104.6 103.9 105.0 104.5
51 Tulsa 103.4 104.8 104.1 104.1
52 North Carolina St. 104.9 102.3 104.5 103.9
53 Texas Tech 104.6 103.8 103.1 103.9
54 Michigan St. 104.5 103.9 102.8 103.7
55 Indiana 102.9 104.8 102.5 103.4
56 Virginia 104.3 101.5 103.8 103.2
57 Arizona St. 103.9 102.8 102.5 103.1
58 Maryland 102.3 104.7 100.8 102.6
59 Syracuse 104.0 100.8 102.6 102.5
60 Navy 102.6 101.7 102.4 102.3
61 Toledo 101.5 101.8 102.0 101.8
62 California 104.6 97.8 102.2 101.5
63 Duke 101.7 101.6 101.0 101.4
64 Wake Forest 101.6 100.4 102.0 101.4
65 Kentucky 101.1 102.0 100.5 101.2
66 Appalachian St. 100.4 100.7 102.4 101.2
67 Vanderbilt 101.6 98.4 100.3 100.1
68 Memphis 100.7 98.8 99.6 99.7
69 South Carolina 99.7 99.3 99.3 99.5
70 Boston College 99.9 98.8 99.4 99.4
71 Arizona 99.6 97.4 98.1 98.4
72 Iowa St. 98.6 98.2 97.9 98.2
73 Louisiana Tech 96.9 98.8 98.6 98.1
74 Missouri 97.9 97.6 97.2 97.6
75 Central Florida 95.9 97.3 96.6 96.6
76 Cincinnati 96.4 96.8 96.4 96.6
77 Middle Tennessee 95.8 96.7 96.3 96.3
78 Army 92.8 99.8 94.9 95.8
79 New Mexico 94.8 96.9 95.7 95.8
80 Central Michigan 95.0 96.9 95.4 95.8
81 Air Force 94.8 96.2 94.8 95.3
82 Troy 93.0 97.7 95.0 95.3
83 Northern Illinois 94.1 95.5 95.4 95.0
84 SMU 94.4 93.9 96.5 95.0
85 Oregon St. 96.7 92.2 95.3 94.7
86 East Carolina 94.0 95.5 94.3 94.6
87 Illinois 95.0 91.6 94.0 93.6
88 Ohio 91.3 97.1 92.0 93.5
89 Wyoming 92.2 92.3 93.2 92.6
90 Connecticut 92.4 91.3 92.0 91.9
91 Southern Mississippi 91.6 91.9 92.0 91.9
92 Arkansas St. 90.6 92.6 92.3 91.8
93 Utah St. 91.0 93.6 90.8 91.8
94 Colorado St. 90.0 91.8 90.9 90.9
95 Purdue 91.8 90.2 90.5 90.8
96 Rutgers 92.0 89.6 90.6 90.8
97 Georgia Southern 88.2 88.6 90.0 89.0
98 Kent St. 87.2 89.0 87.9 88.1
99 Miami (O) 86.8 87.7 88.2 87.6
100 Old Dominion 86.2 89.7 86.7 87.5
101 Ball St. 85.4 87.9 86.5 86.6
102 Akron 84.2 89.9 85.6 86.6
103 Tulane 84.9 88.9 85.6 86.5
104 Nevada 85.3 87.7 85.9 86.3
105 UNLV 85.1 88.2 85.2 86.2
106 South Alabama 83.5 90.1 84.8 86.1
107 Eastern Michigan 85.1 87.4 85.4 86.0
108 Hawaii 85.9 84.9 85.7 85.5
109 Georgia St. 82.7 87.4 84.6 84.9
110 UTSA 81.7 88.4 84.1 84.8
111 Marshall 82.8 86.4 83.7 84.3
112 Kansas 82.9 88.1 80.3 83.8
113 North Texas 81.7 84.8 82.5 83.0
114 Massachusetts 80.3 86.6 81.4 82.8
115 Bowling Green 82.4 82.8 82.4 82.5
116 San Jose St. 82.7 82.7 82.2 82.5
117 Idaho 79.5 84.8 81.1 81.8
118 Fresno St. 80.0 83.5 79.7 81.1
119 Florida International 79.1 83.7 79.3 80.7
120 UL-Lafayette 77.7 83.8 79.5 80.4
121 Rice 77.6 84.3 77.6 79.8
122 Buffalo 76.3 83.2 76.9 78.8
123 Florida Atlantic 74.1 78.8 77.0 76.6
124 Charlotte 73.7 79.0 74.4 75.7
125 UTEP 72.2 76.7 73.4 74.1
126 New Mexico St. 71.6 74.7 72.5 72.9
127 Texas St. 67.5 69.7 68.3 68.5
128 UL-Monroe 64.9 69.8 65.2 66.6

 

PiRate Retrodictive Rankings
# Team
1 Alabama
2 Michigan
3 Clemson
4 Louisville
5 Washington
6 Texas A&M
7 Ohio St.
8 Wisconsin
9 Western Michigan
10 Auburn
11 Nebraska
12 Florida
13 Oklahoma
14 Colorado
15 LSU
16 Washington St.
17 Penn St.
18 Virginia Tech
19 West Virginia
20 Florida St.
21 Boise St.
22 USC
23 North Carolina
24 Tennessee
25 Utah
26 Baylor
27 Houston
28 Stanford
29 South Florida
30 Oklahoma St.
31 Arkansas
32 Pittsburgh
33 Appalachian St.
34 San Diego St.
35 Tulsa
36 Troy
37 Minnesota
38 Iowa
39 Northwestern
40 BYU
41 Ole Miss
42 Temple
43 Georgia Tech
44 Kansas St.
45 Western Kentucky
46 Miami (Fla)
47 Navy
48 Kentucky
49 Wyoming
50 Toledo
51 Arizona St.
52 California
53 Texas Tech
54 UCLA
55 Oregon
56 Texas
57 Georgia
58 Maryland
59 Louisiana Tech
60 North Carolina St.
61 Indiana
62 Memphis
63 Middle Tennessee
64 Wake Forest
65 TCU
66 South Carolina
67 Central Florida
68 Vanderbilt
69 Syracuse
70 Air Force
71 Colorado St.
72 Mississippi St.
73 Southern Miss.
74 Notre Dame
75 New Mexico
76 SMU
77 Boston College
78 Ohio
79 Army
80 Oregon St.
81 Duke
82 Old Dominion
83 Central Michigan
84 Michigan St.
85 Akron
86 Georgia Southern
87 Cincinnati
88 Arizona
89 Eastern Michigan
90 East Carolina
91 Missouri
92 Idaho
93 Virginia
94 Arkansas St.
95 South Alabama
96 Utah St.
97 Illinois
98 North Texas
99 Hawaii
100 Rutgers
101 Northern Illinois
102 UTSA
103 Ball St.
104 Tulane
105 Connecticut
106 Kent St.
107 Purdue
108 Iowa St.
109 UL-Lafayette
110 Miami (O)
111 Georgia St.
112 UNLV
113 Nevada
114 San Jose St.
115 New Mexico St.
116 Marshall
117 Bowling Green
118 Charlotte
119 Massachusetts
120 UL-Monroe
121 Florida Int’l.
122 Kansas
123 Texas St.
124 Buffalo
125 UTEP
126 Rice
127 Fresno St.
128 Florida Atlantic

PiRate Ratings By Conference

American Athletic Conference
East Division        
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average
South Florida 108.8 107.0 109.3 108.4
Temple 104.6 103.9 105.0 104.5
Central Florida 95.9 97.3 96.6 96.6
Cincinnati 96.4 96.8 96.4 96.6
East Carolina 94.0 95.5 94.3 94.6
Connecticut 92.4 91.3 92.0 91.9
         
West Division        
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average
Houston 109.3 108.2 110.7 109.4
Tulsa 103.4 104.8 104.1 104.1
Navy 102.6 101.7 102.4 102.3
Memphis 100.7 98.8 99.6 99.7
SMU 94.4 93.9 96.5 95.0
Tulane 84.9 88.9 85.6 86.5
         
AAC Averages 99.0 99.1 99.4 99.1
         
Atlantic Coast Conference
Atlantic Division        
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average
Louisville 127.2 122.5 127.1 125.6
Clemson 126.7 119.5 125.6 123.9
Florida St. 119.2 112.7 118.3 116.7
North Carolina St. 104.9 102.3 104.5 103.9
Syracuse 104.0 100.8 102.6 102.5
Wake Forest 101.6 100.4 102.0 101.4
Boston College 99.9 98.8 99.4 99.4
         
Coastal Division        
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average
Virginia Tech 119.1 117.7 119.5 118.8
North Carolina 118.4 112.0 118.3 116.2
Pittsburgh 115.1 111.4 114.3 113.6
Miami 115.7 110.0 115.0 113.6
Georgia Tech 109.2 105.3 108.1 107.5
Virginia 104.3 101.5 103.8 103.2
Duke 101.7 101.6 101.0 101.4
         
ACC Averages 111.9 108.4 111.4 110.6
         
Big 12 Conference
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average
Oklahoma 120.9 119.4 120.6 120.3
Oklahoma St. 115.2 116.2 115.0 115.5
Baylor 113.8 114.3 114.2 114.1
West Virginia 111.8 110.8 111.3 111.3
Texas 110.3 111.4 109.7 110.5
Kansas St. 106.6 108.9 106.5 107.3
TCU 106.5 108.0 105.6 106.7
Texas Tech 104.6 103.8 103.1 103.9
Iowa St. 98.6 98.2 97.9 98.2
Kansas 82.9 88.1 80.3 83.8
         
Big 12 Averages 107.1 107.9 106.4 107.2
         
Big Ten Conference
East Division        
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average
Michigan 128.7 126.4 128.7 127.9
Ohio St. 121.9 121.5 122.2 121.9
Penn St. 112.0 113.2 111.4 112.2
Michigan St. 104.5 103.9 102.8 103.7
Indiana 102.9 104.8 102.5 103.4
Maryland 102.3 104.7 100.8 102.6
Rutgers 92.0 89.6 90.6 90.8
         
West Division        
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average
Wisconsin 115.4 113.4 116.1 115.0
Nebraska 113.2 110.2 113.1 112.2
Iowa 112.1 109.5 111.9 111.2
Northwestern 110.4 106.4 109.4 108.7
Minnesota 105.8 104.7 105.3 105.3
Illinois 95.0 91.6 94.0 93.6
Purdue 91.8 90.2 90.5 90.8
         
Big Ten Averages 107.7 106.5 107.1 107.1
         
Conference USA
East Division        
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average
Western Kentucky 105.5 102.9 106.8 105.1
Middle Tennessee 95.8 96.7 96.3 96.3
Old Dominion 86.2 89.7 86.7 87.5
Marshall 82.8 86.4 83.7 84.3
Florida International 79.1 83.7 79.3 80.7
Florida Atlantic 74.1 78.8 77.0 76.6
Charlotte 73.7 79.0 74.4 75.7
         
West Division        
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average
Louisiana Tech 96.9 98.8 98.6 98.1
Southern Mississippi 91.6 91.9 92.0 91.9
UTSA 81.7 88.4 84.1 84.8
North Texas 81.7 84.8 82.5 83.0
Rice 77.6 84.3 77.6 79.8
UTEP 72.2 76.7 73.4 74.1
         
CUSA Averages 84.5 87.9 85.6 86.0
         
FBS Independents
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average
Notre Dame 112.7 108.8 111.3 110.9
BYU 109.6 104.1 109.2 107.6
Army 92.8 99.8 94.9 95.8
Massachusetts 80.3 86.6 81.4 82.8
         
Indep. Averages 98.9 99.8 99.2 99.3
         
Mid-American Conference
East Division        
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average
Ohio 91.3 97.1 92.0 93.5
Kent St. 87.2 89.0 87.9 88.1
Miami (O) 86.8 87.7 88.2 87.6
Akron 84.2 89.9 85.6 86.6
Bowling Green 82.4 82.8 82.4 82.5
Buffalo 76.3 83.2 76.9 78.8
         
West Division        
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average
Western Michigan 112.9 111.8 114.6 113.1
Toledo 101.5 101.8 102.0 101.8
Central Michigan 95.0 96.9 95.4 95.8
Northern Illinois 94.1 95.5 95.4 95.0
Ball St. 85.4 87.9 86.5 86.6
Eastern Michigan 85.1 87.4 85.4 86.0
         
MAC Averages 90.2 92.6 91.0 91.3
         
Mountain West Conference
Mountain Division        
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average
Boise St. 105.7 106.9 106.7 106.4
New Mexico 94.8 96.9 95.7 95.8
Air Force 94.8 96.2 94.8 95.3
Wyoming 92.2 92.3 93.2 92.6
Utah St. 91.0 93.6 90.8 91.8
Colorado St. 90.0 91.8 90.9 90.9
         
West Division        
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average
San Diego St. 105.6 104.2 107.6 105.8
Nevada 85.3 87.7 85.9 86.3
UNLV 85.1 88.2 85.2 86.2
Hawaii 85.9 84.9 85.7 85.5
San Jose St. 82.7 82.7 82.2 82.5
Fresno St. 80.0 83.5 79.7 81.1
         
MWC Averages 91.1 92.5 91.5 91.7
         
Pac-12 Conference
North Division        
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average
Washington 128.8 121.6 128.6 126.3
Stanford 114.6 108.6 114.0 112.4
Washington St. 112.4 109.5 112.2 111.4
Oregon 107.1 105.3 106.3 106.2
California 104.6 97.8 102.2 101.5
Oregon St. 96.7 92.2 95.3 94.7
         
South Division        
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average
Colorado 117.5 113.0 117.3 116.0
USC 117.7 112.9 115.5 115.4
UCLA 110.2 108.7 109.5 109.5
Utah 111.7 106.2 110.1 109.3
Arizona St. 103.9 102.8 102.5 103.1
Arizona 99.6 97.4 98.1 98.4
         
Pac-12 Averages 110.4 106.4 109.3 108.7
         
Southeastern Conference
East Division        
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average
Florida 114.7 116.6 113.2 114.8
Tennessee 115.5 112.7 114.7 114.3
Georgia 107.8 107.4 106.9 107.4
Kentucky 101.1 102.0 100.5 101.2
Vanderbilt 101.6 98.4 100.3 100.1
South Carolina 99.7 99.3 99.3 99.5
Missouri 97.9 97.6 97.2 97.6
         
West Division        
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average
Alabama 135.9 129.1 135.8 133.6
LSU 124.8 119.8 124.4 123.0
Auburn 123.7 121.2 123.9 122.9
Texas A&M 117.5 115.5 117.3 116.8
Ole Miss 114.3 109.2 113.0 112.2
Arkansas 109.9 105.2 108.0 107.7
Mississippi St. 107.8 106.3 106.7 106.9
         
SEC Averages 112.3 110.0 111.5 111.3
         
Sunbelt Conference
Team PiRate Mean Bias Average
Appalachian St. 100.4 100.7 102.4 101.2
Troy 93.0 97.7 95.0 95.3
Arkansas St. 90.6 92.6 92.3 91.8
Georgia Southern 88.2 88.6 90.0 89.0
South Alabama 83.5 90.1 84.8 86.1
Georgia St. 82.7 87.4 84.6 84.9
Idaho 79.5 84.8 81.1 81.8
UL-Lafayette 77.7 83.8 79.5 80.4
New Mexico St. 71.6 74.7 72.5 72.9
Texas St. 67.5 69.7 68.3 68.5
UL-Monroe 64.9 69.8 65.2 66.6
         
Sun Belt Averages 81.8 85.5 83.2 83.5

 

PiRate Ratings By Conference
# League PiRate Mean Bias Average
1 SEC 112.3 110.0 111.5 111.3
2 ACC 111.9 108.4 111.4 110.6
3 Pac-12 110.4 106.4 109.3 108.7
4 Big 12 107.1 107.9 106.4 107.2
5 Big Ten 107.7 106.5 107.1 107.1
6 Independents 98.9 99.8 99.2 99.3
7 AAC 99.0 99.1 99.4 99.1
8 MWC 91.1 92.5 91.5 91.7
9 MAC 90.2 92.6 91.0 91.3
10 CUSA 84.5 87.9 85.6 86.0
11 Sun Belt 81.8 85.5 83.2 83.5

 

 

This Week’s Games–November 1-5
         
Home Visitor PiRate Mean Bias
Tuesday, November 1
Northern Illinois Bowling Green 14.7 15.7 16.4
Ball St. Western Michigan -24.5 -20.9 -25.1
         
Wednesday, November 2
Akron Toledo -15.3 -9.9 -14.4
         
Thursday, November 3
Ohio U Buffalo 18.0 16.9 18.1
Iowa St. Oklahoma -19.3 -18.2 -19.7
Georgia St. Arkansas St. -5.4 -2.7 -5.2
Colorado UCLA 10.3 7.3 10.8
         
Friday, November 4
Miami (O) Central Michigan -5.2 -6.2 -4.2
Connecticut Temple -9.2 -9.6 -10.0
Boise St. San Jose St. 26.0 27.2 27.5
         
Saturday, November 5
Boston College Louisville -24.3 -20.7 -24.7
Clemson Syracuse 25.7 21.7 26.0
Duke Virginia Tech -14.4 -13.1 -15.5
North Carolina St. Florida St. -11.3 -7.4 -10.8
North Carolina Georgia Tech 12.2 9.7 10.2
Miami (Fla.) Pittsburgh 3.6 1.6 3.7
Washington St. Arizona 15.8 15.1 17.1
USC Oregon 13.6 10.6 12.2
California Washington -21.2 -20.8 -23.4
West Virginia Kansas 31.9 25.7 34.0
Kansas St. Oklahoma St. -5.6 -4.3 -5.5
Notre Dame (N) Navy 10.1 7.1 8.9
Army Air Force 1.0 6.6 3.1
Ole Miss Georgia Southern 29.1 23.6 26.0
Mississippi St. Texas A&M -6.7 -6.2 -7.6
Auburn Vanderbilt 25.1 25.8 26.6
Texas Tech Texas -3.2 -5.1 -4.1
Rutgers Indiana -8.4 -12.7 -9.4
Illinois Michigan St. -6.5 -9.3 -5.8
Northwestern Wisconsin -3.0 -5.0 -4.7
Middle Tennessee UTSA 17.1 11.3 15.2
Wake Forest Virginia -0.2 1.4 0.7
Rice Florida Atlantic 6.0 8.0 3.1
Colorado St. Fresno St. 13.0 11.3 14.2
Southern Miss. Charlotte 20.9 15.9 20.6
Baylor TCU 9.8 8.8 11.1
Stanford Oregon St. 20.9 19.4 21.7
Cincinnati BYU -10.2 -4.3 -9.8
Troy Massachusetts 15.7 14.1 16.6
Arkansas Florida -1.8 -8.4 -2.2
Michigan Maryland 29.4 28.7 30.9
Minnesota Purdue 17.0 17.5 17.8
Appalachian St. Texas St. 35.9 34.0 37.1
SMU Memphis -3.8 -2.4 -0.6
South Carolina Missouri 5.0 4.7 5.1
UL-Lafayette Idaho 0.8 2.0 1.4
UL-Monroe South Alabama -13.6 -18.3 -17.6
Central Florida Tulane 14.0 14.4 14.0
Western Kentucky Florida Int’l. 29.4 22.2 30.5
North Texas Louisiana Tech -12.2 -11.0 -13.1
Old Dominion Marshall 5.9 6.2 5.5
San Diego St. Hawaii 23.7 23.3 25.9
Penn St. Iowa 2.9 6.7 2.5
Kentucky Georgia -4 -2.4 -3.4
LSU Alabama -8 -6.3 -8.4
Tulsa East Carolina 12.4 12.3 12.8
Ohio St. Nebraska 11.7 14.3 12.1
New Mexico Nevada 12.5 12.2 12.8
Wyoming Utah St. 4.2 1.7 5.4

(N)–Game to be played in Jacksonville, FL

FBS vs. FCS Week 10  
Home Visitor PiRate
Tennessee Tennessee Tech 41
UTEP Houston Baptist 16

 

Bowl Projections

The bowl outlook took a major turn this past weekend with numerous upsets bringing multiple teams into the bowl discussions.  Let’s take a look at how each conference was affected.

Group of 5 Leagues

American Athletic Conference

South Florida recovered from its loss to Temple by beating Navy at its own game.  This now opens the door in the West for Tulsa, which beat Memphis to move into position to take the West if they win out.  Because the AAC does not slot bowl teams into specific bowls, it did not change much.  Houston with two losses is out of the NY6 Bowl picture for now.  The AAC has eight bowl tie-ins but appears headed to having just seven bowl eligible teams.  However, SMU is getting better and better every week, so the Mustangs could sneak in as the eighth eligible team.  For now, we are predicting that Cincinnati will not be bowl eligible.

Conference USA

Western Kentucky should win the East with Middle Tennessee and Old Dominion earning bowl bids from this division.  The West is up for grabs, but Louisiana Tech is starting to look like the team that will emerge as the division winner.  Southern Miss. and North Texas are still alive, and UTSA is a dark horse.  We see six bowl eligible teams emerging, which is perfect, since the league has six bowl tie-ins.

Independents

BYU is going to be bowl eligible and get the Poinsettia bid allotted to the Cougars.  With Army’s upset of Wake Forest, the Black Knights should get to seven wins and become bowl eligible.  Notre Dame still looks like a team on the outside.  The Fighting Irish might need to beat USC in the season finale to get to 6-6, and for now, we do not believe they can beat the Trojans.

Mid-American Conference

Western Michigan is now in the driver’s seat for the NY6 Bowl thanks to Wyoming’s win over Boise State.  The Broncos have a rather easy November schedule and figure to play a 7-5 or even 6-6 team in the MAC title game.

The East has become quite interesting.  While Ohio has the upper hand in the race, keep an eye on Miami of Ohio.  Miami has not figured in the race in years, but the Redhawks won at Eastern Michigan Saturday to move to 3-2 in the league.  If Miami wins out, and Ohio loses to Toledo and either Central Michigan or Akron, then Miami could be the division winner with a 6-6 overall mark.

The MAC will have at least seven bowl eligible teams, and they only have five bowl tie-ins.  Because WMU for now is slotted for the Cotton Bowl, there will be one surplus team to become an at-large invitee to another bowl.

Mountain West Conference

Boise State’s loss not only knocks them well back in the NY6 Bowl pecking order, the Broncos now need Wyoming to lose twice in order to get a trip to the MWC Championship Game.  It has been awhile since the Broncos have played at home in the bowl season, but we believe they will garner another bowl even if they do not win the league.

San Diego State is all but assured to win the West Division, and the Aztecs could be the only division team to gain bowl eligibility.  Hawaii’s loss at home to New Mexico means the Rainbow Warriors are probably looking at 6-7 at best.  At 6-7, UH would have preference over the 5-7 teams trying to gain alternate status to bowls.

Sun Belt

With 11 teams and just four bowl tie-ins, the SBC usually produces an extra bowl eligible team or two.  We believe two league teams will receive at-large bids this year.  Troy and Appalachian State are already bowl eligible, while Arkansas State and Georgia Southern in good shape.  South Alabama and either Idaho or Louisiana-Lafayette should give the league a couple of at-large candidates.

Power 5 Leagues

Atlantic Coast Conference

Clemson, Florida State, and Louisville in the Atlantic and North Carolina, Virginia Tech, and Pittsburgh in the Coastal are assured of bowls, but after that, it is a jumbled race.  For now, we believe Miami, Wake Forest, and Georgia Tech will become bowl eligible, but North Carolina State, Boston College, Syracuse, and Duke will not.  We also believe Duke may fall to 4-8, taking the Blue Devils out of the 5-7 bowl sweepstakes, where they hold the APR Ace card.  Boston College has a fat APR score and could get in at 5-7.  Overall, we see nine bowl teams from this league.  Because Clemson should get a playoff spot and Louisville is safe as a NY6 Bowl team, and because there is a chance that either North Carolina or Virginia Tech could sneak into the Cotton Bowl picture, this league will not supply all its contracted bowls with teams.

Big 12 Conference

With the two undefeated teams losing this past weekend, it is almost impossible now for a team from this league to make the Playoffs.  It is the price the Big 12 pays for not expanding (and as some believe because Texas says no expansion).  As of today, we have the league champion going to the Sugar Bowl, and no other team should earn an NY6 bid.  With Texas and Texas Tech winning, this now makes a strong case for seven bowl eligible teams (TCU dropping out for now) for seven bowls.

Big Ten Conference

Can Michigan win at the Giant Horseshoe?  We believe the Wolverines are now considerably better than Ohio State, and we cannot see a West Division team staying within two touchdowns of the Maize and Blue.  Jim Harbaugh has his alma mater looking much like it did back in the Bo Schembechler 1970’s.

Should Michigan hand Ohio State that season-ending loss, and should Penn State win out, the Nittany Lions could be the Rose Bowl’s choice over a multiple loss West Division champion.

We are looking at 10 bowl eligible teams in this league, but we also believe three teams will be in the NY6, meaning the league will come up one team short for its bowl obligations.

Pac-12 Conference

With Washington’s win at Utah, we now show the Huskies going to the Palouse and beating rival Washington State in the season finale.  In the South, Colorado controls its own destiny with a favorable schedule, but they will have to beat Utah in Boulder on the final weekend.

We show UCLA, Cal, and Oregon falling short, while Arizona State recovers to gain bowl eligibility.  This leads to seven bowl eligible teams for eight spots (one playoff and seven bowls), so the Cactus Bowl would have to find another team.

Southeastern Conference

In what was an interesting turn of events this past weekend in the East Division, South Carolina upset Tennessee and Kentucky won at Missouri.  Florida now controls its own destiny in the division, but if the Gators lose to Arkansas and LSU on the road, and Kentucky beats fading Georgia and Tennessee teams, the Wildcats would be the major shocking surprise winner in the division!

Alabama plays at LSU this weekend, and we just cannot see the Tigers winning this game.  The Tide get Auburn at home, so it looks like a march to the top seed for the Saban Dynasty.

We have added South Carolina to the Bowl list this week, and with Kentucky now 99% assured of gaining bowl eligibility, that brings the SEC to 11 bowl eligible teams, which means they will supply a team for every bowl tie-in.

The 7-loss Alternate Teams

This week, we have 78 teams gaining bowl eligibility.  We have Hawaii at 6-7, so the Rainbow Warriors would be team #79.  The 80th team would thus go to the highest APR score of the 5-7 teams.  Duke would be that team if the Blue Devils can win two more times, but their schedule is set up for a hard crash, and thus we do not believe they will win five games.

Next up among the possible 5-7 teams is Vanderbilt.  If the Commodores win one of their final four games (Missouri is still to be played), it looks like they will be the 80th team in the field.  It might mean a 1,500+ mile trip out West.

Bowl Conferences Team vs. Team
New Mexico MWC CUSA New Mexico vs. North Texas
Las Vegas Pac-12 MWC Arizona St. vs. San Diego St.
Cure AAC SBC Temple vs. Appy St.
Camellia MAC SBC Miami (O) vs. S. Alabama
New Orleans CUSA SBC La. Tech vs. Troy
Miami Beach AAC MAC Central Fla. vs. Central Mich.
Boca Raton AAC CUSA Houston vs. Western Ky.
Poinsettia MWC BYU Colorado St. vs. BYU
Idaho Potato MAC MWC Eastern Mich. vs. Wyoming
Bahamas AAC/CUSA MAC/CUSA South Florida vs. Toledo
Armed Forces Navy Big 12 Navy vs. Texas Tech
Dollar General MAC SBC Ohio U vs. Arkansas St.
Hawaii CUSA MWC Middle Tenn. vs. Boise St.
St. Petersburg AAC ACC/ND Memphis vs. Miami (Fla.)
Quick Lane ACC/ND Big Ten [Akron] vs. Indiana
Independence SEC ACC/ND Ole Miss vs. [Idaho]
Heart of Dallas Big Ten CUSA {Hawaii} vs. Sou. Miss.
Military ACC/ND AAC [Army] vs. Tulsa
Holiday Big Ten Pac-12 Minnesota vs. Utah
Cactus Big 12 Pac-12 Kansas St. vs. {Vanderbilt}
Pinstripe ACC/ND Big Ten Pittsburgh vs. Maryland
Russell Athletic ACC/ND Big 12 Va. Tech vs. Oklahoma St.
Foster Farms Big Ten Pac-12 Iowa vs. Wash. St.
Texas Big 12 SEC West Virginia vs. Tennessee
Birmingham AAC SEC [Ga. Sou.] vs. S. Carolina
Belk ACC/ND SEC Wake Forest vs. Florida
Alamo Big 12 Pac-12 Baylor vs. USC
Liberty Big 12 SEC Texas vs. Arkansas
Sun ACC/ND Pac-12 Georgia Tech vs. Stanford
Arizona CUSA/SBC MWC/SBC Old Dominion vs. Air Force
Music City ACC/ND/B10 SEC Northwestern vs. Georgia
Orange ACC/ND B10/SEC Louisville vs. Nebraska
Citrus ACC/ND/B10 SEC Wisconsin vs. Auburn
TaxSlayer ACC/ND/B10 SEC Florida St. vs. Kentucky
Peach Semifinal Semifinal Alabama vs. Washington
Fiesta Semifinal Semifinal Michigan vs. Clemson
Outback Big Ten SEC Ohio St. vs. LSU
Cotton At-Large At-Large N. Carolina vs. Western Mich.
Rose Big Ten Pac-12 Penn St. vs. Colorado
Sugar Big 12 SEC Oklahoma vs. Texas A&M
Championship Semifinal Winners Alabama vs. Michigan
           
[Team] At-Large Selection
{Team} At-Large Selection of projected 7-Loss Team

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

October 20, 2016

PiRate Ratings Money Line Parlay Picks–October 20-24, 2016

Not So Good

Last weekend was not a great one for the parlay-pickers at PiRate Headquarters.  We selected four longshot parlays and returned one winner at +192, as upsets by Eastern Michigan and Vanderbilt prevented a potential major windfall.

For the season, this drops our mediocre results to just plain not-so-good.  As usual, our solace is that we are not out a penny, because we never actually invest real currency (or whatever you call those green notes in your wallet).

We’re not all that enthused with this week’s schedule either.  It took an extra afternoon to come up with four picks, and we included two underdogs to win outright in our four plays.  Good luck with that.

It may be a better weekend to hike in the forest with all the changing colors on the trees.

1. College Parlay @ +209
California over Oregon
North Carolina over Virginia
West Virginia over TCU
 
2.College Parlay @ +234
Colorado over Stanford
Oklahoma over Texas Tech
Alabama over Texas A&M
Tulsa over Tulane
 
3. College Singleton @ +275
Arizona St. over Washington St.
 
4. NFL Parlay @ +208
Green Bay over Chicago
Cincinnati over Cleveland
Atlanta over San Diego
Denver over Houston
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