Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets 2019 College Football Preview

College Football Predictions – Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets 2019 College Football Preview

2018 Recap

Record – 7-6

ATS – 5-8

It’s the end of an era.

The Yellow Jackets managed to win seven games in Paul Johnson’s final season in Atlanta but they ended the year on a sour note. Georgia Tech got smoked by Georgia (reasonable) to end the regular season but then got POLEAXED by Minnesota (not reasonable) in the Quick Lane Bowl.

New HC Geoff Collins comes over from Temple and starts from GROUND ZERO. Let’s take a peek at their prospects for 2019.


2019 MEGALOCKS Opening Power Rating

Coastal Division – #7

ACC – #14


Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets 2019 Outlook

OFFENSE

“And here we go” <The Joker> <The Dark Knight>

This won’t be easy, especially in year one moving away from the option. The starting QB gig is wide open as we go to press, but our ACC INSIDERS feel that Lucas Johnson has the edge based on his passing ability and performance in the spring. It’s unclear what kind of weapons that the soon-to-be starting QB will have when choosing to MATRICULATE the ball down the field in the passing game as the WR corps is a mystery. The good news? The Yellow Jackets are loaded at RB, and even with the switch away from the option attack, it’s good to know that there are fellas who know how to get yards on the ground. The offensive line returns just a pair of starters and they will be learning an entirely different scheme. And don’t forget that their excellent guard Parker Braun transferred to Texas.

It’s not clear what to expect, but we project them to average at least a TD per game less than last season (33.6).

DEFENSE

The Yellow Jackets have some work to do on this side of the ball. They only return four starters to a stop unit that allowed 29.3 PPG LY (#9 ACC) and bagged 17 sacks (2nd last ACC). In fact, Georgia Tech has been lacking in the PENETRATION department for quite a while tallying fewer than 20 sacks in each of the last four seasons (!). Georgia Tech also loses their top-three tacklers from a season ago and don’t return a single starter on the defensive line. Yikes. We hate to cut this preview short but we start curling up in the FETAL POSITION when thinking about their short-term prospects.

SPECIAL TEAMS

Finally, some good news. PK Wesley Wells was MR AUTOMATIC last season converting on 9/9 FG attempts and 39/39 XP. Waaaaaaaaaaaat? Georgia Tech also boasts a fantastic KR in Juanyeh Thomas who had two (!) KR TDs a season ago. We LIKEY LIKEY.

Schedule Analysis

Overall – Wow. Start with Clemson (hide the men, women, and children) and finish with Georgia. The ACC slate doesn’t look like much fun either, yo.

Potential ATS Trouble Spot – at Miami (October 19)

We love getting down some SWEET ACTION on underdogs but this will be Georgia Tech’s third road game in four weeks and Miami has a way of laying the WOOD at home.

Season Win Total

Over 4 +140

Under 4 -160

MEGALOCKS says:

‘Over’ doesn’t seem like an option. We don’t usually participate in DUMPSTER DIVING but it feels like ‘under’ or nothing.

MEGAmazing Tidbit

Bobby Dodd Stadium is the oldest stadium in the FBS and has been the site of more home wins than any other venue.


MEGALOCKS ATS Outlook: Negative

We can’t sugar-coat the situation. It remains to be seen how the transition away from the option offense works out BUT year one will be a struggle. There’s no way around it. They will likely get better as the season rolls along but it seems illogical to expect anything more than 3-4 wins this year.

Historical ATS records need to be discarded, no matter what the guys like TREND GUY and QUANTITIES ARE LIMITED GUY tell you on Twitter. New ball game. Our recommendation is to avoid them when crafting your weekly wagering cards until (if) they show signs of stabilizing.


Want more Georgia Tech football ?

WEBSITE

http://www.ramblinwreck.com/sports/m-footbl/geot-m-footbl-body.html

FORUM

https://247sports.com/college/georgia-tech/Board/Hive-Sports-Center-104173/

https://gtswarm.com/forums/georgia-tech-football.4/

https://georgiatech.forums.rivals.com/forums/the-buzz-members-only.6/

NEWS

http://www.fromtherumbleseat.com/

http://www.ajc.com/sports/georgia-tech/

https://www.espn.com/college-football/team/_/id/59/georgia-tech-yellow-jackets

http://bleacherreport.com/georgia-tech-football

TWITTER

Hashtag – #TogetherWeSwarm

Accounts to follow

https://twitter.com/GeorgiaTechFB

Duke Blue Devils 2019 College Football Preview

College Football Predictions – Duke Blue Devils 2019 College Football Preview

2018 Recap

Record – 8-5

ATS – 6-7

The Blue Devils machine keeps rolling on.

Yup. That makes five winning seasons in the past six campaigns. Last year felt like a bit of a disappointment to some but they still managed to win eight games. They started to struggle in the second half of the season once the injuries piled up but they showed up in the Independence Bowl and SMOKED Temple by a score of 56-27. That win was all the more impressive given the way that they ended the regular season. Wake Forest kicked their teeth in (59-7) (!) and we actually think the Demon Deacons scored again as we were typing this paragraph.

Let’s see what the squad looks like heading into 2019.


2019 MEGALOCKS Opening Power Rating

Coastal Division – #4

ACC – #7


Duke Blue Devils 2019 Outlook

OFFENSE

It’s never easy to move on from losing a #1 NFL DC at QB (Daniel Jones, Giants), but that’s exactly what the Blue Devils are faced with in 2019. The offense is going to look a lot different as QB Quentin Harris provides a lot of mobility at the position. The bad news? There is complete turnover at WR and the leading player in terms of receiving yards back for duty is RB Deon Jackson (253). Why else might the offense look different? Well we HOPE there is more emphasis on the run (sorry, NFL ADVANCED METRICS GUY) because that is where the proven talent resides on offense. Running backs Deon Jackson and Brittain Brown provide a great 1-2 combo (1,216 yards, 10 TD LY) and they are performing behind a good-looking offensive line that returns three starters to the mix.

The Blue Devils will almost certainly see their scoring production drop (29.4 PPG LY) but we still think they can do enough to win a bunch of games.

DEFENSE

Duke was decimated with injuries last year and really got ROLLED late in the season. We are pleased to report that eight starters are back for duty and it appears certain that they will be much improved. All four starters return on the DL and they have some nice size on the interior and a ton of players that appeared in game action a season ago. Star LB Joe Giles-Harris led the team in tackles LY and the LB unit is the biggest worry on defense. As far as the secondary goes, they bring back a ton of experience including excellent CB Mark Gilbert who missed almost all of the 2018 campaign. Duke has yielded fewer than 56% completions in each of the past five years and we see another solid performance on deck.

The Blue Devils are poised to make a big move forward on defense (27.4 PPG LY). If they can find a way to force more turnovers (tied for last ACC LY, 13) it would really help the cause.

SPECIAL TEAMS

Things are a little on the bleak side. They need to work in a new PK and P Austin Porter bagged just a 36.0 yard net LY (#99 FBS net punting). The return units could use significant improvement.

Schedule Analysis

Overall – It’s never great to start with ROLL TIDE. They also get Notre Dame in non-conference action and have tough road ACC games at Virginia Tech and Virginia.

Potential ATS Trouble Spot – Syracuse (November 16)

Not an ideal spot, yo. Duke will be coming off a game with Notre Dame and potentially looking ahead to a revenge date with in-state rival Wake Forest (lost 59-7 LY).

Season Win Total

Over – 5.5 -110

Under – 5.5 -110

MEGALOCKS says:

This is a decent-looking team but they’ll be hard pressed to win six games given their schedule. Need to make a pick? LEANAGE to the ‘over’.

MEGAmazing Tidbits

Duke takes on ROLL TIDE in their season opener and will look to rekindle some of the magic from the 1945 Sugar Bowl in which they defeated Alabama by a score of 29-26.

Your pal Steve Spurrier went 3-0 vs hated-rival North Carolina while he was the HC at Duke.


MEGALOCKS ATS Outlook: Positive

The Blue Devils have a really good looking defense, one of the best head coaches in the conference, a mobile QB, and a solid-looking running game. That’s a lot of boxes being checked, my friends. Things would have to go pretty well for the Dukies to challenge for the division crown but they don’t have to worry about Clemson.

Duke has a phenomenal ATS mark of 70-51-4 (58%) in the last ten years under the leadership of David Cutcliffe. Last year was their first losing season vs the number (6-7) since 2012. It won’t be pretty, but we just might be lining up for some SWEET ACTION when it comes to Duke.


Want more Duke football ?

WEBSITE

http://www.goduke.com/SportSelect.dbml?SPID=1843&SPSID=22672

FORUM

Free

https://247sports.com/college/duke/Board/Pascal-Field-House-102415/

https://duke.forums.rivals.com/forums/duke-football-open-forum-free.14/

https://duke.forums.rivals.com/forums/devil-insider.10/

NEWS

http://www.dukechronicle.com/section/football

https://www.espn.com/college-football/team/_/id/150/duke-blue-devils

https://balldurham.com/duke-football/

http://bleacherreport.com/duke-football

TWITTER

Hashtag – #DukeGang

Accounts to follow

https://twitter.com/DukeFOOTBALL

https://twitter.com/AdamRoweTDD

North Carolina Tar Heels 2019 College Football Preview

College Football Predictions – North Carolina Tar Heels 2019 College Football Preview

2018 Recap

Record – 2-9

ATS – 6-5

The Tar Heels couldn’t overcome a boatload of suspensions and injuries and struggled to a two-win season. Five of their nine losses were by a TD or less, but close doesn’t pay the bills. Enter legendary HC Mack Brown who starts his second tour of duty in Chapel Hill. There is talent on the roster and North Carolina was in the ACC Championship Game as recently as 2015. Hmm.


2019 MEGALOCKS Opening Power Rating

Coastal Division – #6

ACC -#12


North Carolina Tar Heels 2019 Outlook

OFFENSE

Phil Longo comes over from Ole Miss where he did a fine job as the OC. There are a lot of interesting pieces to work with in Chapel Hill including star recruit QB Sam Howell who looked good in the spring. It remains to be seen if North Carolina will throw him to the wolves right away (South Carolina, Miami) but it appears certain that the Tar Heels have their QB of the future. The WR and TE groups are solid even with the loss of Anthony Ratliff-Williams (689, 16.4, 2 TD LY) as they return #2 through #6 in terms of receiving yards from a season ago.

The RB group is the strength of the offense as they return a good 1-2 combo in Michael Carter and Antonio Williams (1,101 combined rushing yards LY) and have a potential star emerging in Javonte Williams who impressed during the spring. Fun fact: Javonte Williams was the 1,476th best prospect in his class according to 247 Sports Composite. The offensive line returns three starters including a really good LT in Charlie Heck, and remember that the Tar Heels averaged 5.3 YPC (#4 ACC) and allowed just 10 sacks (!) (#1 ACC) last year.

North Carolina seems poised for significant improvement on offense (27.4 PPG LY), although keep in mind that they face a lot of good defenses, especially early in the season.

DEFENSE

Jay Bateman did a wonderful job as DC at Army and joins the UNC staff as co-DC and safeties coach this season. We are excited about this hire and think that he can do a good job with the talent on hand (seven returning starters), and recall that the defense was significantly impacted by injuries and suspensions in 2018. The Tar Heels lose their top-three tacklers from last year’s defense including LB Cole Holcomb who is off to the NFL (Redskins) as well as DE Malik Carney who led the team in sacks and TFL. They bring back excellent NG Aaron Crawford who missed last season due to injury and look to have another solid secondary.

North Carolina has allowed 30+ PPG in each of the last two seasons (34.5 LY) but we can see them making meaningful strides and getting below the 30 PPG barrier. Our only hesitation is that they face a daunting schedule (see below).

SPECIAL TEAMS

The Tar Heels need to break in a new P and PK, but at least they bagged former Appalachian St PK Michael Rubino as a grad transfer. Dazz Newsome is a dangerous PR but they will miss Ratliff-Williams’ explosiveness on KR.

Schedule Analysis

Overall – YIKES. The Tar Heels somehow face 11 teams that made bowl games last season. Mercer provides some relief. Things are nasty right off the start as they face South Carolina, Miami, Wake, Appalachian St, and Clemson in their first five contests.

Potential ATS Trouble Spot – Appalachian St (September 21)

This game falls between ACC tilts with Wake Forest and Clemson. This game will be circled on the Mountaineers’ calendar as they would love to pull an in-state upset and SHOCK THE WORLD.

Season Win Total

Over 5 +105

Under 5 -125

MEGALOCKS says:

Tough call. This team is poised to surprise some folks but getting to five wins might be difficult.

MEGAmazing Tidbits

Mack Brown amassed an impressive record of 69-46-1 (.599) in ten seasons during his first stint at North Carolina.

In June of this year, Mack Brown had knee replacement surgery performed by one of his former players. Dr Michael Bolognesi was a defensive back for the Tar Heels from 1989-1993. Astound the BACKSTABBING HUMAN RESOURCES MANAGER at the next lame company work function with that little trivia nugget.


MEGALOCKS ATS Outlook: Neutral

This feels like a program ready to make a nice step forward. The question becomes: will it be this season? There are going to be growing pains introducing a new coaching staff and systems, and it’s not fair to expect miracles out of a true freshman QB, if that’s the direction they decide to go. Bowl eligibility would be a truly fine accomplishment. It’s not impossible, but WHOA NELLIE, that schedule.

We’ll start the season with a neutral ATS view on these guys but don’t forget about them if they start slow. Value will almost certainly present itself later in the season. Go Heels!


Want more North Carolina football ?

WEBSITE

http://www.goheels.com/SportSelect.dbml?SPID=12962&SPSID=667864&SITE=UNC&DB_OEM_ID=3350

FORUM

https://247sports.com/college/north-carolina/Board/Tar-Pit-102711/

https://northcarolina.forums.rivals.com/forums/blue-heaven.18/

NEWS

http://keepingitheel.com/football/

http://www.tarheelblog.com/unc-tar-heels-football

http://www.tarheeltimes.com/uncfootball.aspx

https://www.espn.com/college-football/team/_/id/153/north-carolina-tar-heels

TWITTER

Hashtags – #CarolinaFootball, #BeTheOne

Accounts to follow

https://twitter.com/TarHeelFootball

https://twitter.com/TarHeelsFB

Pittsburgh Panthers 2019 College Football Preview

College Football Predictions – Pittsburgh Panthers 2019 College Football Preview

2018 Recap

Record – 7-7

ATS – 8-5-1

Boom.

The Panthers started out with a record of 3-4 but proceeded to rattle off four ACC victories in a row (Duke, at Virginia, Virginia Tech, at Wake Forest) to take control of the division. They couldn’t make a dent in the Clemson JUGGERNAUT and got blown out in the ACC Championship Game by a score of 42-10. Pitt gets full marks for hanging in there when things didn’t look great and becoming the 2018 Coastal Division SURPRISE PACKAGE.

What will Pitt do for an encore?


2019 MEGALOCKS Opening Power Rating

Coastal Division – #5

ACC -#11


Pittsburgh Panthers 2019 Outlook

OFFENSE

Tough times may be ahead for the Panthers as they need to find a way to win without their PAIR of 1,000-yard rushers from a season ago. Qadree Ollison and Darrin Hall ROLLED over the opposition to the tune of 2,357 rushing yards and 21 TDs last year and will be greatly missed. Pitt has a way of replacing RBs like nobody’s business and maybe highly-touted specimen AJ Davis will be NEXT MAN UP? The offensive line deserves a ton of credit for last year’s performance in the ground game but only return one starter. The good news? Junior QB Kenny Pickett has quite a bit of experience under his belt and also has a nice group of receivers at his disposal. Maurice Ffrench had 6 TDs LY and Taysir Mack averaged 22.3 (!) yards per reception.

New OC Mark Whipple will be able to coax more out of a THROW GAME that was pathetic last year (142 YPG, #13 ACC) but the rushing attack will not be close to the 2018 version. We expect an overall level of production similar to the prior year (25.6 PPG).

DEFENSE

The Panthers did just enough a season ago. They allowed 27.8 PPG (#8 ACC) and 388 YPG (#5 ACC) whilst bagging 30+ sacks for the third time in the past four seasons (32). They did their best work when it mattered most as they held Virginia, Virginia Tech, and Wake Forest to a combined 48 points in a critical three-game stretch. Six starters return to the stop unit which is obviously handy but they need to do a better job vs the run (178 YPG, #9 ACC LY). Rashad Weaver is an emerging star at his DE spot (14 TFL,10 QBH LY) and the Panthers will be happy to have MLB Elias Reynolds back in the fold as well as leading tackler FS Damar Hamlin. Pitt has done a good job vs the pass the last two years (about 55% completions on each occasion) and that should be the strength of their D once again. We don’t expect miracles but think the Panthers can perform at the same level as last season.

SPECIAL TEAMS

Yes, guy.

This just might be the strength of the team. PK Alex Kessman nailed 13/17 three-pointers including 4/5 (!) from 50+ a season ago and KR Maurice Ffrench is phenomenal on KRs (27.4, 2 TD LY).

Schedule Analysis

Overall – It’s a bit nasty. Check out the non-conference action (at Penn St, UCF, Ohio). They start out with the stingy Cavaliers on August 31.

Potential ATS Trouble Spot – Ohio (September 7)

This is your classic SANDWICH GAME (Virginia, at Penn St). Added bonus? Ohio is the most talented team in the MAC.

Season Win Total

Over 6 -115

Under 6 -105

MEGALOCKS says:

Slight LEANAGE to the under but not on it yet. It’s hard to see this team getting to 7 wins.

MEGAmazing Tidbits

The Panthers have lost six of their last seven bowl games.

RB Tony Dorsett was the first FBS player to rush for 6,000 yards in a career.

Check this out, yo. The first known use of numbers on the uniforms of football uniforms was instituted by Pitt in 1908. Amaze your STALKER EX-GIRLFRIEND with that trivia nugget.


MEGALOCKS ATS Outlook: Negative

There are a lot of teams trending upwards in the Coastal Division. Pitt may be taking a step backwards this year. They lose a ton of production at RB and the defense is decent, but not great. Fun fact: Pitt has allowed more points than they have scored in each of the past two seasons.

The Panthers feel like an ATS fade for the most part, particularly when they are in the role of home chalk as they are just 5-10-1 (33%) vs Vegas in that position during the tenure of HC Pat Narduzzi. Proceed with caution.


Want more Pittsburgh Panthers football ?

WEBSITE

http://www.pittsburghpanthers.com/sports/m-footbl/pitt-m-footbl-body.html

FORUM

https://pittsburgh.forums.rivals.com/forums/football-board.22/

http://pitt.247sports.com/Board/Pittsburgh-Panthers-Message-Board-Forum-59427

https://pittsburgh.forums.rivals.com/forums/between-fifth-and-forbes.20/

NEWS

http://www.cardiachill.com/

https://www.espn.com/college-football/team/_/id/221/pittsburgh-panthers

http://bleacherreport.com/pitt-football

TWITTER

Hashtag – #H2P

Accounts to follow

https://twitter.com/pitt_fb

https://twitter.com/PantherLair

https://twitter.com/PittPantherBlog

Virginia Cavaliers 2019 College Football Preview

College Football Predictions – Virginia Cavaliers 2019 College Football Preview

2018 Recap

Record – 8-5

ATS – 9-4

The Cavaliers booked their first winning season since 2011 and came REALLY close to having a special year. They were in good shape to win the division until losing to Pitt at home as TD favorites. They lost a pair of ACC heartbreakers in OT to finish the regular season and that was that. They showed up in the Belk Bowl and smashed the Gamecocks by a score of 28-CACK.

Bronco Mendenhall is getting things done. Virginia has gone from two wins to eight in relatively short order. Let’s see if they are capable of making the next step.


2019 MEGALOCKS Opening Power Rating

Coastal Division – #1

ACC – #2


Virginia Cavaliers 2019 Outlook

OFFENSE

The Cavaliers have been GRUESOME on offense for a long time BUT last year they managed to score a healthy 28.5 PPG which was their highest mark since 2005 (26.5) (!!). QB Bryce Perkins has video-game quickness and is a MEGALOCKS favorite who threw for 2,680 yards and 25 TDs whilst picking up 923 yards on the ground (9 TDs) in his spare time. We rate him as the best QB in the ACC that doesn’t play for Clemson. When Perkins decides to MATRICULATE the ball down the field in the passing game he will have to do so without the Cavs #2 all-time WR Olamide Zaccheaus who caught 93 (!) balls a season ago. There is some promising talent in the WR group but you don’t get better losing a player like Zaccheaus. The RB unit also takes a massive hit with the loss of the reliable Jordan Ellis who booked a 1,000-yard rushing campaign in 2018. The talent remaining at RB is a bit of a mystery. The offensive line should be good as they bring back three starters and have nice size. We would like to see them clean up the pass protection as they have allowed 30+ sacks in each of the past three years. How do you sack Perkins even ONCE let alone 32 times?

We project a similar level of production as the prior year (28.5 PPG) and would be surprised if they exceed 30 PPG given the lost production at WR and RB.

DEFENSE

Yes, guy.

The Cavaliers have made BIG strides on defense for two consecutive seasons. Last year they finished #3 in the ACC in total defense (331 YPG) and #3 in the conference in scoring defense (20.1 PPG). Eight starters return to the stop unit and they will be a force once again. The DL returns all three starters to the mix and there is size across the board and on the depth chart. The LB group is one of the best in the ACC that features emerging star Charles Snowden at OLB and THE HITS KEEP COMING in the secondary with elite CB Bryce Hall. All Hall did a season ago was lead the FBS in passes defended with 21. Virginia has allowed just 52.5% and 53.4% completions over the past two seasons and should be nasty vs the pass once again.

Virginia should finish with similar results from a scoring perspective this year (20.1 PPG LY).

SPECIAL TEAMS

Things look good. PK Brian Delaney is coming off a fine year (12/16 FG) and KR Joe Reed is a machine (27.2, TD LY). The Cavs will need to find a new punter.

Schedule Analysis

Overall – The docket is pretty favorable. They have to face Miami and Notre Dame on the road but they get the Hokies at home and have a small handful of ‘automatic’ wins.

Potential ATS Trouble Spot – at North Carolina (November 2)

This will be the Cavaliers’ third road game in four weeks and be advised that Virginia has lost the last eight times on the 2nd of back-to-back road games. Not saying, just saying.

Season Win Total

Over 7.5 -140

Under 7.5 +120

MEGALOCKS says:

LEANAGE to the ‘over’. They have a legit shot to take down the division.

MEGAmazing Tidbits

The game between Virginia and North Carolina is called the South’s Oldest Rivalry. It’s the second-most played rivalry in the FBS after Wisconsin vs Minnesota (Paul Bunyan’s Axe, yo).

Virginia’s last ACC title came back in 1995 under the tutelage of HC George Welsh.


MEGALOCKS ATS Outlook: Neutral

There’s no reason to think that these guys can’t make a serious run at the Coastal Division title. They CHECK THE BOXES when it comes to QB, defense and coaching. The primary concern is finding a few legit playmakers at RB and WR. At some point you just have to score points (PRO TIP). Oh ya, and they need to start winning some games on the road. They are just 4-13 (!) SU in true road affairs during the Mendenhall regime.

Virginia has been a .500 ATS proposition for a long time and we look at it that way once again. Pick your spots when crafting your weekly wagering cards.


Want more Virginia Cavaliers football ?

WEBSITE

http://www.virginiasports.com/sports/m-footbl/va-m-footbl-body.html

FORUM

http://chat.virginia.sportswar.com/message_board/football/

https://247sports.com/college/virginia/Board/Virginia-Cavaliers-Message-Board-Forum-16

https://virginia.forums.rivals.com/forums/hoos-next.6/

NEWS

http://www.streakingthelawn.com/

https://www.espn.com/college-football/team/_/id/258/virginia-cavaliers

http://bleacherreport.com/uva-football

TWITTER

Hashtags – #NewStandard, #GoHoos

Accounts to follow

https://twitter.com/UVAFootball

https://twitter.com/hoosdaily

https://twitter.com/DoughtySports

Virginia Tech Hokies 2019 College Football Preview

College Football Predictions – Virginia Tech Hokies 2019 College Football Preview

2018 Recap

Record – 6-7

ATS – 6-7

All good things must come to an end.

Virginia Tech started a serious slide late in the year losing four consecutive ACC battles but they kept fighting and defeated Virginia (!) and Marshall to end the regular season. The Hokies fell to the Cincinnati Bearcats in the Military Bowl and that marked the first losing season for the program since 1992 (!). That is pretty incredible when you think about it.

The honeymoon is over for HC Justin Fuente who is entering his fourth season in Blacksburg. Does this team have what it takes to challenge for a division crown?


2019 MEGALOCKS Opening Power Rating

Coastal Division – #2

ACC – #3


Virginia Tech Hokies 2019 Outlook

OFFENSE

The Hokies have been pretty good on offense under the watch of Justin Fuente as they have averaged 400+ YPG each of the past three years. There has also been some nice balance to the attack and things should go smoothly once again. QB Ryan Willis is just a junior and a solid option to have at QB. Willis is coming off a campaign in which he threw for over 2,700 yards with a 24-9 TD to INT ratio whilst providing enough mobility to make the defense worry (354, 4 TD). Leading rusher Steven Peoples departs but the depth remaining is more than adequate for the Hokies to rotate through the group and produce acceptable rushing numbers (174 YPG LY). Damon Hazelton is a legit #1 WR (802, 15.7, 8 TD LY) and again, there is enough depth in the unit to keep opposing DCs up at night. Our primary concern is an offensive line that returns just a pair of starters to the mix. Their performance has been ‘ok’ the past couple of seasons but they probably need to take a step forward as a group if Virginia Tech is to challenge for the division title. It would be helpful if Coastal Carolina transfer Brock Hoffman is granted eligibility (appeal to come).

This offense should be able to score 30+ PPG (29.8) and be dangerous enough to keep them in every game.

DEFENSE

Finding MIKE TYSON’S TIGER in your bathroom is a surprise. Watching Bud Foster’s defense allow more than 400 points is a REAL surprise (403).

The Hokies dealt with injuries and fielded a very young stop unit a season ago but they should be a lot better this season. Ten starters are back and all three levels of the defense look good. The run defense was ripped apart in 2018 (210 YPG rushing, #12 ACC, 492 vs Pitt) but the DL and LB units return essentially intact and add a pair of JC transfers at DT. The secondary has a full complement of returning starters and will make it at least most of the way back towards Hokie standards. Check this out, yo. Last season was the first time since 2010 (!) that the Hokies had allowed more than 50.1% completions (!). Right!? Mystify your USELESS BOSS with that trivia bomb during your next performance review.

We project a TD+ improvement in PPG allowed in 2019 (31.0 LY).

SPECIAL TEAMS

The Hokies fielded a decent unit last year and all the key components return for duty. We would like to see PK Brian Johnson pull his socks up a bit as he was just 3/9 on FGs from 40+.

Schedule Analysis

Overall – There is good news and bad news. Missing Clemson, Florida St, and NC State from the Atlantic division is nice. It’s not so great having to face Miami and Virginia on the road. Those squads are almost certainly their main competition in the Coastal division.

Potential ATS Trouble Spot – Nothing noted as we go to press.

Season Win Total

Over – 8 -140

Under – 8 +120

MEGALOCKS says:

Slight LEANAGE to the ‘over’. We like the look of this squad.

MEGAmazing Tidbit

Virginia Tech boasts the longest consecutive bowl streak in the FBS (26).


MEGALOCKS ATS Outlook: Positive

Things are looking good from our perspective. The offense is going to be balanced and effective provided that they get decent play out of the OL. The defense is poised to take a big step forward and resemble what we are used to seeing out of these guys. Two of their biggest ACC tilts are on the road, but keep in mind that the Hokies are 10-5 SU in true road games under Justin Fuente’s leadership.

DEGENERATE NATION may have forgotten about Virginia Tech but we have not. We have a mildly positive outlook on their ATS prospects with the major worry being their history vs the point spread. They have only booked one winning season since 2010. Our ACC INSIDERS think that this team can sneak under the radar and potentially be an ATS STEALTH BOMBER. Gobble Gobble!


Want more Virginia Tech football ?

WEBSITE

http://www.hokiesports.com/football/

FORUM   

http://chat.virginiatech.sportswar.com/message_board/vtfootball/

http://www.thekeyplay.com/forums/football-forum

http://virginiatech.247sports.com/Board/Virginia-Tech-Hokies-Message-Board-Forum-59428

NEWS

http://www.thekeyplay.com/

http://virginiatech.sportswar.com/hokie-sports-feed/

https://www.espn.com/college-football/team/_/id/259/virginia-tech-hokies

http://bleacherreport.com/virginia-tech-football

http://www.roanoke.com/sports/colleges/

http://www.gobblercountry.com/

TWITTER

Hashtags – #HardSmartTough, #Hokies

https://twitter.com/VT_Football

https://twitter.com/AndyBitterVT

 

Miami Hurricanes 2019 College Football Preview

College Football Predictions – Miami Hurricanes 2019 College Football Preview

2018 Recap

Record – 7-6

ATS – 5-8

YOUR Miami Hurricanes appeared to be on the road to another 10-win season after they mounted a thrilling comeback victory over Florida St. Their record of 5-1 quickly morphed into 5-5 after they lost four consecutive ACC games (at Virginia, at Boston College, Duke, at Georgia Tech). The Hurricanes finished strong by clubbing Virginia Tech and Pitt by a combined score of 62-17. And then, the cold weather game, yo. Wisconsin blew them to bits 35-3 in the Pinstripe Bowl but at least it was a 100,000 STAR TWITTER BOWL MOVE OF THE DECADE winner.

Former DC Manny Diaz takes over the head coaching duties and will try and get Miami back to being MIAMI.


2019 MEGALOCKS Opening Power Rating

Coastal Division – #3

ACC – #4


Miami Hurricanes 2019 Outlook

OFFENSE

Miami was embarrassing on offense last season finishing up averaging a mere 359 YPG which was 2nd last in the conference next to the horrible Louisville Cardinals. The QB play was some of the worst that college football observers have seen in recent times (passing efficiency #114 FBS) but thankfully there is hope on the horizon. Ohio St transfer Tate Martell is the leading candidate to take over the starting QB gig, and if so, he could provide the Hurricanes with their first legitimate star at the position since…….<thinks hard> <gives up>. Sophomore N’Kosi Perry was inconsistent last season but is still in the mix. A longshot to get a look is redshirt freshman Jarren Williams. The smart money is on Martell to win the job but it’s not settled yet. Stay tuned.

If the depth charts are to believed, the pecking order in the RB group is something along the lines of DeeJay Dallas, Cam’Ron Harris, and the highly-touted specimen Lorenzo Lingard who is coming off a serious ankle injury sustained last October. There is potential to be sure, but it’s unclear how much actual production will be provided by the group. Whomever wins the QB battle during fall camp will be thrilled with the options at WR and TE. Jeff Thomas is a legit #1 weapon, KJ Osborn could be a big part of the THROW GAME after his transfer from Buffalo, and TE Brevin Jordan is a budding star. The offensive line is a bit of a worry as they only return a pair of starters to the unit and the Hurricanes haven’t exactly produced top-notch offensive lines over the past number of years.

Miami has only averaged 30+ PPG once in the past five seasons but we think they can get over the hump this year. There are going to be some bumps in the road but there is too much talent on board to think otherwise.

DEFENSE

The Hurricanes were rock solid last year and ended the previous season ranked #4 in total defense allowing just 279 YPG. They bagged 40+ sacks for the second consecutive year, were fantastic vs the pass (#1 FBS pass efficiency D) (!) and led college football in TFL/game by a wide margin. What can they do for an encore?

New DC Blake Barker did a fine job at Louisiana Tech and has a lot of talent to work with in Miami. There are six starters returning to the stop unit including a fantastic-looking LB unit. All three starters are back including #2 tackler and 1st Team ACC honoree Shaquille Quarterman. The DL looks talented but might be down a notch with the departure of AA Gerald Willis (18 TFL LY). The biggest concern, as strange as it might be to say about Miami, is a secondary that loses THREE starters to the NFL. Again, there is a lot of talent on hand, but it’s probably unrealistic to expect something close to the elite performance that we saw last season.

This won’t be the same lock-down squad as last year but they are still one of the best defenses in the conference.

SPECIAL TEAMS

Things look fine. The return game is excellent, particularly from a PR perspective, as the Canes return two guys that had PR TDs a season ago (Dallas, Thomas). PK Bubba Baxa was 9/12 on FG attempts, although just 1/3 from 40+ yards. We are most pleased to see an AUSSIE punter! Louis Hedley is a tattoo-laden 24-year old who just might be the most intimidating punter in the history of college football. Just kidding. Not really.

Schedule Analysis

Overall – Things set up pretty well. Their toughest game of the season is most likely their season opener when they take on the Gators in Orlando. They get both of their prime division rivals (Virginia, Virginia Tech) at home. There are plenty of FREE SQUARES on the slate.

Potential ATS Trouble Spot – at Pittsburgh (October 26)

We aren’t high on Pitt this season but the Panthers have beat the Hurricanes twice in their last five meetings including the last one at Heinz Field. Miami has their yuuuge rivalry game with Florida St the following week. We will almost certainly avoid laying road chalk with Miami in this spot.

Season Win Total

Over 8.5 -130

Under 8.5 +110

MEGALOCKS says:

Slight lean to the over. The schedule is pretty light overall and there is a lot of talent on this roster.

MEGAmazing Tidbits

Legend has it that in 1984 during halftime of the Miami vs FSU game a Miami student threw up what is considered to be the first “U” hand sign. This is now a common gesture used to identify the University of Miami.

Miami has won just one of their last nine bowl games.


MEGALOCKS ATS Outlook: Neutral

The Hurricanes definitely appear to be on the right track. The defense is back to MIAMI quality. We like the hire of Manny Diaz. The only ingredient missing is a legit ACC starting QB. Tate Martell may not be a star right away but he has fans and the program is really excited. We wouldn’t be surprised to see him struggle vs the Gators in the opener but then gain confidence in the following weeks when they are facing lesser competition. Things are lined up perfectly from a scheduling perspective. If Miami can run the ACC table in October they will be in great shape to win the division. That is easier said than done.

The Hurricanes were just 10-16 ATS over the past two seasons and they will likely be top of mind with bettors as we enter the season. We like the look of this squad but recommend taking a cautious wagering approach given the uncertainty at QB, the reload in the secondary, and their annoying habit of delivering disappointment.

Let’s go! It’s All About the U.


Want more Miami Hurricanes football ?

WEBSITE

http://www.hurricanesports.com/SportSelect.dbml?SPID=103763&SPSID=658365&DB_OEM_ID=28700

FORUM          

https://www.canesinsight.com/forums/eye-in-the-sky.9/

http://www.miami-hurricanes.com/forum/tt.asp?appid=1

http://miami.247sports.com/Board/Miami-Hurricanes-Message-Board-Forum-92

https://miami.forums.rivals.com/forums/gary-fermans-war-room.12/

NEWS

http://www.stateoftheu.com/

http://miami.247sports.com/

http://www.sun-sentinel.com/sports/miami-hurricanes/

https://www.espn.com/college-football/team/_/id/2390/miami-hurricanes

http://bleacherreport.com/miami-hurricanes-football

https://caneswarning.com/miami-hurricanes/

TWITTER

Hashtag#ItsAllAboutTheU

Accounts to follow

https://twitter.com/CanesFootball

https://twitter.com/TheStateOfTheU

https://twitter.com/smillerdegnan

Louisville Cardinals 2019 College Football Preview

College Football Predictions – Louisville Cardinals 2019 College Football Preview

2018 Recap

Record – 2-10

ATS – 1-11

WHOA NELLIE.

I’m not sure what we witnessed, but it wasn’t pretty. Louisville had booked eight (!) consecutive winning seasons before they completely fell off the map last year with a record of 2-10. The best part? They started 2-1 with wins over Indiana St and WKU. They threw in the towel sometime in October and allowed 50+ points in each of their final five contests.

Hope is on the horizon. Scott Satterfield is the new HC and he did some fine work at Appalachian St. What can we reasonably expect in 2019?


2019 MEGALOCKS Opening Power Rating

Atlantic Division – #7

ACC – #13


Louisville Cardinals 2019 Outlook

OFFENSE

It’s not easy to cut your scoring average almost in half but that’s exactly what the Cardinals accomplished last year (38.1 to 19.8 PPG). Jawon Pass looks like he will get the nod at QB even after a season in which he completed 54% of his passes with a 8-12 TD to INT mark. Hassan Hall led the RB corps in rushing yards a season ago but it was a paltry total of 303 (4.3 YPC) and the depth behind him appears sketchy. We like their talent at WR but are not 100% convinced (quite a bit less, actually) that the Cards have a QB that can get them the ball on a consistent basis. Louisville has allowed 40+ sacks (!) in four of the last five seasons. Job #1 has to be to cut down on negative plays. The Cards boast a fine LT in Mekhi Becton who is a MAN weighing in at 6-7, 365.

The offense will take a step forward but it’s hard to predict how big of a step that will be.

DEFENSE

HALLEY’S COMET makes a tour in our vicinity approximately once every 75-76 years. Louisville allowed 50+ points in six of their last seven games. Hmm. What will happen next? A view of the infamous comet or a FBS team matching that dubious honor? <grabs popcorn> There’s only one way to go (up?) after allowing 44 PPG and the Cards have an actual DC this year to go along with 10 returning starters. There is more talent on the stop unit than the numbers would suggest as it was clear the team had lost it’s will to live in October last year. We expect these guys to improve by at least a TD per game in 2019.

SPECIAL TEAMS

Here is something to hang the hat upon. This appears to be one of the better units in the ACC with all key components returning for duty including PK Blanton Creque (10/12 FG LY) and a PR (Rodjay Burns) and KR (Hassan Hall) that each bagged a return TD in 2018.

Schedule Analysis

Overall – It starts tough (Notre Dame) and finishes tough with three nasty road games in the final month of the season (at Miami, at NC State, at Kentucky).

Potential ATS Trouble Spot – Nothing of note.

Season Win Total

Over 3.5 -130

Under 3 +110

MEGALOCKS says:

Slight lean to the under. It’s hard to see this team winning more than three games.

MEGAmazing Tidbit

Navy defensive backs coach LEE CORSO took over the Louisville HC gig and led the team to a mark of 28-11-3 during his tenure (1969-1972).


MEGALOCKS ATS Outlook: Neutral

Ok, let’s just start over. And a good way to do that is grab a solid HC who knows how to build and sustain a program. It’s obvious that there will a lot of struggles this season but they will be improved. It’s just not clear HOW MUCH better they will be. They should probably be happy with a 3-4 win season with maybe an upset or two. Then bigger things in 2020.

We plan on avoiding Louisville games from a betting perspective until we get an idea of what we are dealing with this season.


Want more Louisville football ?

WEBSITE

http://www.gocards.com/index.aspx?path=football&

FORUM

https://247sports.com/college/louisville/Board/The-CardMarch-103994/

https://louisville.forums.rivals.com/forums/football-the-crunch-zone.20/

NEWS

https://www.cardchronicle.com/

https://www.espn.com/college-football/team/_/id/97/louisville-cardinals

http://bleacherreport.com/louisville-cardinals-football

https://cardinalsportszone.com/category/football/

TWITTER

Hashtag – #L1C4

Accounts to follow

https://twitter.com/UofLFootball

Wake Forest Demon Deacons 2019 College Football Preview

College Football Predictions – Wake Forest Demon Deacons 2019 College Football Preview

2018 Recap

Record – 7-6

ATS – 5-8

The Demon Deacons made a third consecutive bowl game for just the second time in school history and didn’t waste the opportunity to shine. Again. HC Dave Clawson led the team to another bowl win by beating a tough Memphis Tigers team by a score of 37-34 in the Birmingham Bowl. These guys are definitely on the right track.

That makes three winning seasons in a row and let’s see if they have the MINERALS to make it a FOUR-BAGGER.


2019 MEGALOCKS Opening Power Rating

Atlantic Division – TBD

ACC – TBD


Wake Forest Demon Deacons 2019 Outlook

OFFENSE

The Wake Forest offense was a HIDEOUS MESS for a long time but have really got it going lately under the leadership of Dave Clawson and OC William Ruggiero. The Deacons have averaged more than 30 PPG in each of the past two season (32.8 LY) and are almost certain to have another fine season when you look at the talent coming back.

We love the QB situation. There are two solid options in Sam Hartman and Jamie Newman who each do a good job in the THROW GAME whilst providing mobility and a running threat. Seemingly 12th-year senior RB Cade Carney is coming off a 1,000-yard campaign and the WR and TE groups are sound even with the departure of WR (and special teams ace) Greg Dortch. Three starters are back on the offensive line including LT Justin Herron who missed almost the entire 2018 season due to injury. Expect another very good performance out of the offense.

DEFENSE

RUH ROH.

Wake is in a bit of a freefall after allowing 33.3 PPG LY (#12 ACC) and have now regressed significantly in each of the past two years. The Deacons return just five starters to the mix although they have some talent at each level of the defense. The appropriately-named DE Carlos Basham led the team in TFL (11) last year, LB Justin Strnad led the team in tackles and both starting senior CBs are back, including 2nd Team ACC honoree Essang Bassey (15 PBU LY). Wake scooped up a fine DL in transfer Miles Fox (ODU) but he tore his Achilles in the spring.

The Demon Deacons have allowed 450+ YPG in each of the past two seasons. The most we can expect this year in mild improvement, and they most certainly cannot afford any injuries to the small handful of really good players they have on defense.

SPECIAL TEAMS

The kicking game is in really good shape, particularly with the return of ace PK Nico Sciba (19/22 FG LY). The explosive Greg Dortch (2 PR TD LY) will be missed.

Schedule Analysis

Overall – The first half of the slate looks pretty easy and it’s not impossible to think they could have four or five wins at the midpoint of the season. We recommend that they get a lot of wins early because they finish with tough road tests in three of their final four games (at Virginia Tech, at Clemson, at Syracuse).

Potential ATS Trouble Spot – at Rice (September 7)

The Deacons will be in the unfamiliar role of road chalk and have a tussle with in-state rival North Carolina on deck.

Season Win Total

Over 7 +130

Under 7 -170

MEGALOCKS says:

LEANAGE to the under. Not crazy about the extra juice, but it would be a surprisingly good regular season if they bagged more than seven wins.

MEGAmazing Tidbits

Wake Forest is the sixth-smallest school in the FBS in terms of undergraduate enrollment (Rice, Tulsa, service academies).

The Demon Deacons and Clemson Tigers played in the 1982 MIRAGE BOWL in front of 80,000 fans in Tokyo Japan. Half of the spectators where given orange pom-poms (Clemson) while the other half were issued black and gold so they could cheer for Wake Forest. The Grambling University Band provided the halftime entertainment. Clemson walked away with a 21-17 win. Amaze the BURLY STATE TROOPER with those trivia nuggets next time you get pulled over for speeding.


MEGALOCKS ATS Outlook: Neutral

It’s good to see the Demon Deacons playing such solid football. This team should provide fans with plenty of excitement this season as the offense won’t have too many problems scoring points. Then, there is that defense. The early schedule is pretty favorable and it wouldn’t surprise us to see them get off to a hot start.

Wake Forest suffered their first ATS losing season of the Dave Clawson era ATS last year (5-8) but they have been profitable overall since he grabbed the reins. They don’t draw a lot of public support and often provide value vs the number. It’s just hard to trust that defense. Taking a neutral view for now.


Want more Wake Forest football ?

WEBSITE

http://www.wakeforestsports.com/sports/m-footbl/wake-m-footbl-body.html

FORUM

http://www.ogboards.com/forums/index.php

http://wakeforest.247sports.com/Board/

https://wakeforest.forums.rivals.com/forums/the-pulpit-premium.6/

NEWS

http://www.bloggersodear.com/

https://www.espn.com/college-football/team/_/id/154/wake-forest-demon-deacons

http://bleacherreport.com/wake-forest-football

TWITTER

Hashtag – #GoDeacs

Accounts to follow

https://twitter.com/WakeFB

Boston College Eagles 2019 College Football Preview

College Football Predictions – Boston College Eagles 2019 College Football Preview

2018 Recap

Record – 7-5

ATS – 7-4-1

Nobody saw that coming.

Boston College rattled off their fifth SEVEN-win season in the past six years (yes, EXACTLY seven wins) and managed to pick up a few decent victories along the way. They won road contests at Wake Forest and Virginia Tech and managed to beat YOUR Miami Hurricanes as home underdogs. The bad news? They come into this season with a bit of a bad taste in their mouths as they lost their final three games of the regular season (Clemson, at Florida St, Syracuse) and had their bowl date with Boise St cancelled due to weather.

Should we just pencil in another seven-win campaign?


2019 MEGALOCKS Opening Power Rating

Atlantic Division – #5

ACC – #9


Boston College Eagles 2019 Outlook

OFFENSE

The Eagles have increased their scoring output in each of the last three seasons (32.0 LY) and at least have the QB/RB combo to inflict more damage. QB Anthony Brown is a bit inconsistent but he is still just a junior that has tossed 31 TDs in his first two seasons (18 INT). MEGALOCKS favorite RB AJ Dillon is one of the premier weapons in all of college football and will hopefully get a chance to dominate without dealing with nagging injuries. Dillon followed up his 1,589-yard rushing campaign from 2017 (14 TDs) with another 1,108 yards and 10 TDs in just 10 games LY.

The WR group lost quite a few guys and the Eagles will miss reliable TE Tommy Sweeney who caught 32 balls a season ago and is off to the NFL (Bills). The OL is a bit of a worry, although BC seems to turn out solid offensive linemen like nobody’s business. Losing an AA talent like Chris Lindstrom (#1 pick – Falcons) is never a good thing, but maybe Boston College can pick up where they left off? They have averaged a tidy 189 and 220 YPG rushing over the past two years.

We call for a slight decrease in offensive production but think they can finish with about 28-30 PPG.

DEFENSE

Things have slid since DC Don Brown left to join the Michigan Wolverines. Boston College has yielded 25.7, 22.8 and 25.0 PPG after allowing just 15.3 and 21.3 PPG in the previous two campaigns. The news is not great this year as they only return three starters to the stop unit and lose five of their top-seven tacklers. DE Zach Allen is going to be virtually impossible to replace as he led the team in sacks (6.5), TFL (15) and QBH (11) in 2018. The LB unit is the strength of the defense as they bring back a pair of excellent players in Isaiah McDuffie and Max Richardson who combined for over 160 tackles and 14.5 TFL a season ago. The Eagles allowed 248 YPG passing last year (#10 ACC) and must replace their entire starting secondary.

It seems to us that the Eagles are likely to take a step backwards on defense and will likely yield 400+ YPG for the second consecutive season.

SPECIAL TEAMS

YIKES. Boston College sported mediocre special teams last year and engage in a significant reboot heading into 2019. The only returnee of note is P Grant Carlson but he struggled in 2018 posting a 33.9 yard net (#121 FBS).

Schedule Analysis

Overall – They open up with a tough Hokies squad, but at least they get that game at home. The next five games could (should?) all be wins. THEN it gets real. The back-half of the docket is nasty and they must navigate a five-game stretch that includes road games at Clemson, Syracuse, and Notre Dame.

Potential ATS Trouble Spot – Florida St (November 9)

The Eagles will be coming off big road tests in back-to-back weeks (at Clemson, at Syracuse) and the Noles have won four of the last five meetings.

Season Win Total

Over 6 -115

Under 6 -105

MEGALOCKS says:

Our prospects are not that high for the Eagles this season BUT those first six games? HAAAAAA. They will almost certainly have 4-5 wins heading into the tough part of their schedule. Slightest of leans to the under.

MEGAmazing Tidbit

Your pal Tom Coughlin (Yes, THAT Tom Coughlin) had a record of 21-13-1 as HC with the Eagles. The highlight of his tenure was a delightful 41-39 win over Notre Dame that marked the first time BC had ever beaten the Irish. It was also the first and only time that the Eagles have tasted victory over a #1 ranked team.


MEGALOCKS ATS Outlook: Negative

There are more questions than answers with this squad. The offense should be fine but can QB Anthony Brown and AJ Dillon stay healthy? The defense is undergoing a massive transformation and the special teams look anything but ‘special’ on paper. These guys will play tough and play smart, but they will almost certainly max out at six, maybe seven wins.

The Eagles have done a REALLY good job ATS under HC Addazio booking a mark of 42-32-2 (57%) vs the point spread. Our prediction is that Boston College fails to meet market expectations more often than not in 2019.


Want more Boston College football ?

WEBSITE

http://bceagles.com/index.aspx?path=football

FORUM

http://eagleoutsider.com/phpbb/index.php

https://bostoncollege.forums.rivals.com/forums/the-eagles-nest.10/

NEWS

http://www.bcinterruption.com/

https://www.espn.com/college-football/team/_/id/103/boston-college-eagles

http://bleacherreport.com/boston-college-football

TWITTER

Hashtags – #WeAreBC, #DecideToFly

Accounts to follow

https://twitter.com/BCFootball

https://twitter.com/bcinterruption