Today's Free Picks for
Posted at 11:30 AM EST.
Saturday, December 15th, 2018 – Mitsubishi Motors Las Vegas Bowl – Sam Boyd Stadium – Las Vegas, NV
3:30 PM EST. Targeting overreactions remains a huge part of our handicapping approach. There are few teams in America susceptible to such a phenomenon like the Fresno State Bulldogs. The Boys from the Valley enter into this contest as the newly-crowned Mountain West Champion after they knocked off the preseason chalk, Boise State, to win the MWC title on their own soil on December 1st. The Bulldogs defeated the Broncos 19-16 in overtime as a 1.5-point dog after they were defeated 24-17 on the Smurf Turf three weeks prior to. In the build-up to the first contest, much of the public was on the Dogs in the Battle for the Milk Can. Then after Boise pulled an upset on their own soil in the first instalment, the consensus zig-zagged and rolled with the Broncos to once again have their tickets ripped up. Now, we likely find that same cohort hopping aboard Fresno State and that is a position we do not like to find ourselves in.
On the opposite end of things, the Sun Devils have not taken the field since they put together an inspirational rally in the fourth quarter of the Duel in the Desert on November 24th against hated cross-state rival Arizona. The Herm Edwards-led bunch took a page of his formerly coached New York Jets and erased a 16-point deficit with 13 minutes remaining to win a 41-40 thriller. The victory knocked Arizona out of bowl contention and perhaps salvaged Arizona State’s campaign after they were at ranked at one point this season. However, ASU is far better than their record indicates, as this is a football team that mollywhopped Pac-12 South Champion Utah by 18 points, defeated Michigan State on its own soil in September, and gave two-time defending Pac-12 Champion Washington a scare on its own soil in October. This is a football team that has never lost a game by more than a touchdown and have led in three of the five games they have lost. Had the Sun Devils been on the favorable end of a few bounces perhaps there would be an entirely different discussion surrounding this football team. The fact remains this team has a penchant for playing up to quality opponents and with an enhanced allotment of points to work with, there is tremendous equity in taking the wood. However, the upset potential is high in this one so don’t be afraid to play the Sun Devils in a a money-line parlay or two.
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Arizona State +6 -109 (Risking 2.18 units - To Win: 2.00)