Posted on: October 5, 2012 10:34 am

Pix by JR: Wild-card special & 3 hot NCAA teams

Hello. I know it's been a long time. Been enjoying the good life on the West Coast.
Hope you're all doing well.

Well, these were too hard to pass up.

Wild-card Friday
Cardinals +155
Orioles +165

Will both dogs lose? I don't see it.

As for NCAA football. Here's 3 hot teams to pay attention to
Kent St
La. Tech

Posted on: October 6, 2011 9:43 am

Pix by JR: Moving to LA

As of Oct. 5, I no longer work for this website.

Don't worry, it was by choice. I was hired by Fox Sports.com to be a Senior Editor. My first day on the job there, out in LA, will be Monday, Nov. 7.

Until I find a new platform to post my picks, I will be taking some time off from doing so. Once I find that new platform, I will post the link here, but it probably won't happen for at least two weeks.

For those that have followed me, thanks a zillion.

Until then, here are 4 suggestions:

1. Bang Wisconsin overs. UW will hit more overs vs. unders throughout the season.

2. LSU -14 vs. Florida this Saturday

3. Play Ohio State unders until the Buckeyes get their offense figured out.

4. Don't forget the underdog moneyline strategy during the Bowl season.  

Peace and thanks to all,
-- JR

Posted on: September 28, 2011 3:52 pm

Week 5 pix by JR -- the Real Expert rebounds

When I pick a game that is so off, it makes me realize that I'm no expert. I picked Tulane +10 at Duke. The Green Wave were never in it, losing 48-27. Please keep this in mind, if you're playing my suggestions.

Please, don't bet the house and don't try to get it all back in one swoop. That's the biggest mistake by any gambler and why the house easily makes money.

I did go 2-1 in my top plays, however, nailing the over in Florida-Kentucky and winning on K-State, which beat Miami as a 12-point underdog. That makes me 7-5 on the season.

Against the experts, I was 11-6. Jerry Hinnen leads the group with an astounding 50-27 mark. I'm second among the experts at 46-31.

I need to admit I didn't study as much this week with the Jewish holiday starting Wednesday night.

On to Week 5

No. 16 South Florida -2.5 at Pittsburgh
Minnesota +20.5 at No. 19 Michigan
At No. 24 Illinois -6.5 vs. Northwestern
No. 14 Texas A&M -3.5 vs. No. 18 Arkansas (At Arlington)
Kentucky +29.5 at No. 1 LSU

At No. 4 Boise State -27.5 vs. Nevada
At N.C. State +11.5 vs. No. 21 Georgia Tech
Auburn +10.5 at No. 10 South Carolina
Bowling Green +20.5 at No. 22 West Virginia
No. 15 Baylor -3.5 at Kansas State

At No. 20 TCU -11.5 vs. Southern Methodist
No. 13 Clemson +7.5 at No. 11 Virginia Tech
No. 17 Texas -10.5 at Iowa State
Ball State +37.5 at No. 2 Oklahoma -37.5
No. 3 Alabama -5.5 at No. 12 Florida

No. 8 Nebraska +9.5 at No. 7 Wisconsin
At No. 25 Arizona State -17.5 vs. Oregon State
At No. 6 Stanford -20.5 vs. UCLA

TOP HANDICAP PLAYS (All games Saturday)
Cincinnati -14.5 at Miami (Ohio)
OVER 56.5 No. 8 Nebraska at No. 7 Wisconsin
Idaho +16 at Virginia


WEEK 4 HANDICAPPING (2-1; 7-5 overall)
Kansas State +12.5 in a 28-24 win at Miami
OVER 43 in Florida 48, Kentucky 10

Tulane +10 in a 48-27 loss at Duke 

A Happy & Healthy New Year to all those who celebrate!

Posted on: September 21, 2011 9:15 pm

Week 4 pix by JR -- the Real Expert rebounds

I have no idea what's going on with the Experts' win-loss records. They sure seem to fluctuate.

I did have the top record for Week 3 with a 13-7 showing, but I'm more embarrassed by my 0-3 performance in my top plays. I guess after a 5-1 start, I was due to take a hit.

After Week 3, Jerry Hinnen's 38-22 leads the Expert standings. Dennis Dodd and I are tied at 35-25, followed by Chip Patterson's 34-26, Brett McMurphy's 33-27, Bruce Feldman's 32-28, Tom Fornelli's 29-31 and Adam Jacobi's 28-32.

On to Week 4

At No. 25 Georgia Tech -5.5 vs. North Carolina
San Diego State +8.5 at No. 22 Michigan
At No. 21 Clemson +3.5 vs. No. 11 Florida State
No. 13 Virginia Tech -19.5 at Marshall
No. 14 Arkansas +12.5 at No. 3 Alabama

Western Michigan +14.5 vs. No. 24 Illinois
No. 7 Oklahoma State +3.5 at No. 8 Texas A&M
No. 15 Florida -17.5 at Kentucky
Vanderbilt +16.5 at No. 12 South Carolina
At No. 18 South Florida -27.5 vs. UTEP

At No. 17 Baylor -19.5 vs. Rice
At Wyoming +23.5 vs. No. 9 Nebraska
At No. 16 West Virginia +6.5 vs. No. 2 LSU
Missouri +21.5 at No. 1 Oklahoma
Tulsa +29.5 at No. 4 Boise State

No. 23 USC +2.5 at Arizona State
No. 10 Oregon -15.5 at Arizona +15.5


TOP HANDICAP PLAYS (All games Saturday)
Tulane +10 at Duke
Kansas State +12.5 at Miami
OVER 43 Florida at Kentucky


WEEK 3 HANDICAPPING (0-3 last week; 5-4 overall)
The three losses:
Toledo +20 in an 40-15 loss to Boise State
Nevada -6.5 in only a 17-14 win at San Jose State
OVER of 51.5 in Notre Dame 31, Michigan State 13

Posted on: September 14, 2011 8:27 pm

Week 3 pix by JR -- the Real Expert rebounds

For those of you crying about what the CBS experts are picking against the spread, well now I see you can check out how they do against the spread and how they do straight up. But I'm sure some will still complain.

As for me, I'm sticking to picking against the spread.

Last week I went 11-7, but it only goes down at 10-7 since the CBS page now doesn't include the unranked Michigan-Notre Dame game. But no worries as that was my bonus play and I'll definitely count it there.

The 11-7 makes me 22-18 after the first two weeks.

Jerry Hinnen is in front of the expert's group at 25-15, followed by Dennis Dodd's 24-16, Adam Jacobi's 22-18, Bruce Feldman & Chip Patterson both at 21-19, Brett McMurphy's 20-20 and Tom Fornelli's 18-22.

As for my Top Handicapping Plays: I went 3-1 with wins on Missouri, Stanford and Michigan. I was wrong g on the Oregon State-Wisconsin over. That makes me 5-1 on these suggestions so far.

Looking at this weekend, there are some big games with the big showdown in Tallahassee. Meanwhile, I'll be in the crowd at Ohio State at Miami.  Go Bucks!

On to Week 3

No. 3 LSU -3.5 at No. 25 Mississippi State

Toledo +18.5 vs. No. 4 Boise State

SATURDAY -- Sorry these aren't in order of rankings. They're in the same order as the CBS Experts page.
No. 21 Auburn +3.5 at Clemson
No. 18 West Virginia + 1.5 at Maryland
Louisiana-Monroe +28.5 vs. No. 23 TCU
No. 16 Florida -9.5 vs. Tennessee
Washington +16.5 at No. 11 Nebraska

Northern Illinois +17.5 vs. No. 7 Wisconsin (at Chicago)
No. 23 Texas -3.5 at UCLA
Notre Dame -4.5 vs. No. 15 Michigan State
Arkansas State +26.5 at No. 13 Virginia Tech -26.5
Navy +18.5 at No. 10 South Carolina

Illinois +1.5 vs. No. 22 Arizona State
Idaho +36.5 at No. 9 Texas A&M
No. 17 Ohio State +1.5 at Miami
No. 2 Alabama -45.5 vs. North Texas (I could never lay money on this many points)
No. 14 Arkansas -25.5 vs. Troy

No. 5 Florida State +3.5 vs. No. 1 Oklahoma
No. 8 Oklahoma State -13.5 at Tulsa
No. 6 Stanford -10.5 at Arizona


Note: Some lines are different from above because the experts pull their lines early in the week.

FRIDAY: Toledo +20 vs. No. 4 Boise State
SATURDAY: Nevada -6.5 at San Jose State
SATURDAY: OVER 51.5 Michigan State at Notre Dame

I know I said I'd be banging Wisconsin OVERS all season, but I'm going to pass on the 64 vs. Northern Illinois.


WEEK 2 HANDICAPPING (3-1 last week, 5-1 overall)
Missouri +7.5 in 37-30 overtime loss at Arizona State
Stanford -21 in 44-14 victory at Duke
Michigan +3.5 in 35-31 win over visiting Notre Dame

Over of 56.5 in Wisconsin's 35-0 shutout of visiting Oregon State

Posted on: September 8, 2011 1:08 am

Week 2 pix by JR -- the Real Expert rebounds

I went 12-11 in Week 1. Picking against the line is going to be tough, but at least I went 2-0 in my top handicap plays.

Wisconsin-UNLV was an easy over. And Middle Tennessee covered against Purdue. Remember I called off the Maryland-Miami play because of the big line change.

Dennis Dodd leads the experts, by going 15-8 last week.

On to Week 2

At No. 9 Oklahoma State -14.5 vs. Arizona

No. 21 Missouri +7.5 at Arizona State

At Penn State +9.5 vs. No. 3 Alabama
No. 6 Stanford -21.5 at Duke
Oregon State +21.5 at No. 8 Wisconsin (over on UW again)
Fresno State +28.5 at No. 10 Nebraska
East Carolina +19.5 at No. 11 Virginia Tech

At Georgia +3.5 vs. No. 12 South Carolina
Nevada +27.5 at No. 13 Oregon
New Mexico +36.5 vs. No. 14 Arkansas (At Little Rock)
Toledo +18.5 at No. 15 Ohio State
At Auburn +6.5 vs. No. 16 Mississippi State

Florida Atlantic +32.5 at No. 17 Michigan State
At No. 18 Florida -21.5 vs. UAB
Ball State +20.5 at No. 20 South Florida
At Air Force +1.5 vs. No. 25 TCU
Utah +9.5 at USC
At Michigan +4.5 vs. Notre Dame


FRIDAY: No. 21 Missouri +7.5 at Arizona State
SATURDAY: OVER 56.5 Oregon State at No. 8 Wisconsin
SATURDAY: No. 6 Stanford -21 at Duke

BONUS: At Michigan +3.5 vs. Notre Dame
Note: Reason some lines are different is because the experts pull their lines early Wednesday, so to compare my picks with the experts I have to go by what line they're using.


Over of 56 in Wisconsin 51, UNLV 17
Middle Tennessee State +17.5 in 27-24 loss at Purdue

Posted on: August 31, 2011 11:14 pm

Week 1 pix by JR -- the Real Expert rebounds

The new season is less than 24 hours away. How freaking awesome is that?

And how awesome is it that CBSSports.com's Experts are now picking against the spread?!

It's about time, right? I agreed with many of your past complaints. "Yea, you guys are real experts. It's real tough to pick Florida over Western Carolina State A&M.

I'm all for picking against the spread, but a wise player knows you can't play every single game. You have to pick your spots. Unfortunately, I didn't do too well at that, going 19-23-1 last season.

But let's not forget my Underdog moneyline strategy during the bowl season was a positive 112.8 units.

This season I'll play along -- here on the message board -- with the 2011 experts, which feature some fresh faces, including new Senior Writer Brett McMurphy -- an excellent addition to the CBSSports.com team.

It will be interesting to see how many of the six experts break .500. I'm going to say none ... not when it comes to picking every Top-25 game.

I will include my top plays each week. Could be one, could be more, could be none. You have to pick your spots and I plan to beat that ugly 19-23-1 showing from 2010.

So on to Week 1.
First team listed is my pick

UNLV +35.5 at No. 11 Wisconsin -- look for backdoor cover while UW plays third-stringers
-- Top handicap play here: Over of 56 -- I'm going to ride UW overs until it kills me this season

No. 20 Mississippi State -27.5 at Memphis -- notice all the experts like the Bulldogs -- that means guaranteed Memphis cover, right?

At Baylor +5.5 vs. No. 14 TCU -- wouldn't surprise me if Baylor wins
Youngstown State +34.5 at No. 17 Michigan State

At No. 1 Oklahoma -24.5 vs. Tulsa
Kent State +36.5 vs. No. 2 Alabama
No. 4 LSU -2.5 vs. No. 3 Oregon (at Arlington) -- Rut roh, looks like I'm the only LSU backer here
No. 19 Georgia +3.5 vs. No. 5 Boise State (At Atlanta)
La.-Monroe +29.5 at No. 6 Florida State

San Jose State +28.5 at No. 7 Stanford
At No. 9 Oklahoma State -37.5 vs. La.-Lafayette
At No. 10 Nebraska -35.5 vs. Chattanooga
East Carolina +20.5 vs. No. 12 South Carolina (At Charlotte)
At No. 13 Virginia Tech -25.5 vs. Appalachian State

Missouri State +40.5 at No. 15 Arkansas
At No. 16 Notre Dame -10.5 vs. South Florida
At No. 18 Ohio State -33.5 vs. Akron
At No. 21 Missouri -16.5 vs. Miami (Ohio)
Florida Atlantic +34.5 at No. 22 Florida

Utah State +21.5 at No. 23 Auburn
Minnesota +21.5 at No. 25 USC

At No. 8 Texas A&M -15.5 vs. SMU
Marshall +20.5 at No. 24 West Virginia


Thursday: OVER 56 UNLV at No. 11 Wisconsin
Saturday: Middle Tennessee +17.5 at Purdue
Monday:  At Maryland +5.5 vs. Miami

Posted on: January 11, 2011 10:39 am

Bowl pix by JR wrapup

Great finish to the college football season last night.

Again, I'd like to point out my comment from my Week 2 picks on Sept. 9:
"No. 21 Auburn over Mississippi State (Tigers my sleeper of the year)"

And of course -- well not really, based on my season record -- I picked Auburn to win last night. Dodd was the only expert to do so (maybe all the experts except for Chip Patterson should be replaced next season).

I was completely wrong on the high-score prediction. I had a feeling it would be low scoring heading into the game, but much easier to say after the fact. Hope no one got burnt on playing the over.

FINAL Expert Picks standings
Bowls: Patterson 22-13, Jacobi 19-16, Darst 18-17, me 18-17, Dodd 18-17 & Horowitz 17-18
Overall: Patterson 258-81, Darst 252-87, me 248-91, Dodd 245-94, Jacobi 244-95 & Horowitz 239-100

Underdog moneyline strategy
Had you followed this theory, you would have been ahead 112.8 units. And to think it started out 0-5.

Remember I said not to play any games of this theory after Dec. 31 (No underdogs won outright after this date). But if you want to know the final tally for all the bowls, here you go:

Underdog moneyline strategy
0-1/-10: New Mexico: BYU wins as FAV vs. UTEP (+320)
0-2/-10/Total -20: Humanitarian: Northern Illinois wins as FAV vs. Fresno State (+111)
0-3/-10/Total -30: New Orleans: Troy wins as FAV vs. Ohio (+110)
0-4/-10/Total -40: Beef O’Brady’s: Louisville wins as FAV vs. So. Miss (+120)
0-5/-10/Total -50: Poinsettia: San Diego St. wins as FAV vs. Navy (+130)
DNP: Las Vegas Bowl: Boise State wins as FAV vs. Utah (+550)
1-5/+31/Total -19: Hawaii: Tulsa (+310) wins as DOG vs. Hawaii
DNP:  Little Caesars: FIU opened as DOG, wins as FAV vs. Toledo
1-6/-10/Total -29: Independence: Air Force wins as FAV vs. Ga. Tech (+125)
2-6/+13/Total -16: Champs Sports: N.C. State (+130) wins as DOG vs. West Virginia
3-6/+13/Total -3: Insight: Iowa (+130) wins as DOG vs. Missouri
3-7/-10/Total -13: Military: Maryland wins as FAV vs. East Carolina (+270)
DNP: Texas: Illinois opens as DOG, wins as FAV vs. Baylor
3-8/-10/Total -23: Alamo: Oklahoma State wins as FAV vs. Arizona (+170)
4-8/+25/Total: +2: Armed Forces: Army (+250) wins as DOG vs. SMU
5-8/+10.3/Total +12.3: Pinstripe: Syracuse (+103) wins as DOG vs. Kansas State
DNP: Music City: North Carolina wins as PICK vs. Tennessee
6-8/+39/Total +51.3: Holiday: Washington (+390) wins as DOG vs. Nebraska
7-8/+17/Total +68.3: Meineke Car Care: South Florida (+170) wins as DOG vs. Clemson
8-8/+11.5/Total +79.8: Sun: Notre Dame (+115) wins as DOG vs. Miami
9-8/+21/Total +100.8: Liberty: UCF (+210) wins as DOG vs. Georgia
10-8/+12/Total +112.8: Chick-Fil-A: FSU (+120) wins as DOG vs. South Carolina

10-9/-10/+92.8: TicketCity: Texas Tech wins as FAV vs. Northwestern (+250)
10-10/-10/+82.8: Outback: Florida wins as FAV vs. Penn State (+210)
10-11/-10/+72.8: Capital One: Alabama wins as FAV vs. Michigan State (+250)
10-12/-10/+62.8: Gator: Mississippi State wins as FAV vs. Michigan (+145)
10-13/-10/+52.8: Rose: TCU wins as FAV vs. Wisconsin (+130)
10-14/-10/+42.8: Fiesta: Oklahoma wins as FAV vs. Connecticut (+520)
10-15/-10/+32.8: Orange: Stanford wins as FAV vs. Virginia Tech (+155)
10-16/-10/+22.8: Sugar: Ohio State wins as FAV vs. Arkansas (+130)
DNP: Go Daddy.com: Miami (Oh) opens as FAV, wins as DOG vs. Middle Tennessee State
10-17/-10/+12.8: Cotton: LSU wins as FAV vs. Texas A&M (+110)
10-18/-10/+2.8: BBVA Compass: Pittsburgh wins as FAV vs. Kentucky (+165)
10-19/-10/-7.2: Fight Hunger: Nevada wins as FAV vs. Boston College (+250)
DNP: Title game: Auburn opens as FAV, wins as PICK vs. Oregon

Thanks to those who often checked in. I was stunned to see each weekly blog received over 1,000 views and the Bowls pix blog received over 17,000 views. Maybe some of you were checking in to see who not to bet on, but I hoped some of the information helped.

Enjoy the offseason -- and feel free to check out CBSSports.com's baseball coverage through the year as that is my primary job here.


Category: NCAAF
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