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ACC Report - Week 10

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Editor's Note: Don't miss out on college football winners in Week 10 from Joe Williams. Click to win!

There were all kinds of tricks, and not treats, in Week 9, as I suffered my first losing weekend on my ACC picks this season. And it was a hard, hard fall, too. I was beaten up here, I was beaten up in the Pac-12, I was beaten up everywhere. It's amazing how one poor week can ruin a season's worth of good work. However, it's time to dust myself off, study harder and resume picking winners. Had someone said that I would not have my first losing weekend in ACC play until late October, I would have taken that in a heartbeat. Now, let's just make sure it doesn't spill into November. And, truth be told, it didn't have to be as bad as it was. On a 7.5-point spread, North Carolina rips off a 74-yard punt return for score by RB Giovani Bernard with 13 seconds left in regulation to stun N.C. State, breaking a 35-35 tie. But then they inexplicably go for two, and convert, turning a winning ticket into a loser. There is no understanding head coach Larry Fedora's thinking there, and it likely angered a lot of people around the country who aren't affiliated with these two rival schools.

I'll be heading out to the Clemson-Duke game Saturday night at Wallace Wade Stadium in Durham, N.C., and we'll learn a lot about head coach David Cutcliffe's bunch. They've been money at home, but a train wreck on the road.

Joe Williams's ACC Season Picks:
Period: 8/31/2012 to 10/27/2012
Pick Type: All Picks
Record: 17-11-0 ( 60.7% , +475)
PICK DETAILS
Week Record Total
Week 9 (Oct. 25-27) 0-4   Lost (- 445) 
Week 8 (Oct. 18-20) 2-0   Won (+ 200) 
Week 7 (Oct. 11-13) 0-0   - (+/-0) 
Week 6 (Oct. 4-6) 2-1   Won (+90) 
Week 5 (Sept. 27-29) 3-1  Won (+190) 
Week 4 (Sept. 19-22) 3-1  Won (+190) 
Week 3 (Sept. 13-15) 3-2  Won (+80) 
Week 2 (Sept. 6-8) 2-1  Won (+90) 
Week 1 (Aug. 31-Sept. 3) 2-1  Won (+80) 
Saturday - Clemson at Duke (ESPN2, 7:00 p.m. ET)
Matchup Five-Star Game
Clemson at Duke
It isn't often that the Duke Blue Devils are a five-star matchup in football, but despite being destroyed on the road by Florida State, they return home where they have had tremendous confidence. This is the portion of schedule where it really gets hard for coach Cut's group, so luckily they already secured their bowl eligibility. We're going to find out a lot about Duke in this one. Are they for real or just a pretender? Duke had a difficult time stopping the run last week, as FSU's James Wilder Jr., pardon the play on words, ran wild. Duke WR Conner Vernon was shut down, as FSU would not allow him to break their alum Peter Warrick's ACC record yardage mark on their watch. Vernon needs just 82 yards to become the league's all-time leader. Overall this season, Clemson is 3-1 on the road, while Duke is 5-0 SU at home. Clemson is 4-0 ATS in its past four raod games, 5-0 ATS in the past five overall and 13-3 ATS in the past 16 ACC games. However, they are 0-4 ATS in their past four games in November, including a stunning loss last season in a trip to the Triangle at N.C. State. Duke has covered eight straight games at home, and the public is all in on the Devils this week. The line opened at 15, but quickly moved down to 13. Duke is 4-0 ATS in its past four home games against a team with a winning record, and 5-2 ATS in its past seven overall. While the Tigers are 4-1 ATS in its past five meetings with Duke, and the favorite (presumably Clemson) is 4-1 in the past five, Clemson is just 1-5 ATS in its past six trips to Wallace Wade. And the home team is 8-1-1 ATS in the past 10 battles. Of course, we saw overwhelming evidence to select Wake last week against Clemson, and the Tigers smashed the Deacs, proving past trends don't necessarily mean much.
Thursday - Virginia Tech at Miami (Fla.) (ESPN, 7:30 p.m. ET)
Matchup Four-Star Game
Virginia Tech at Miami
Thursday night football at 'The U'. It isn't like the old days where there was a ton of mystique and fear in the hearts of an opponents, especially now that Miami host games in a cavernous, and usually one-third or half-full, Joe Pro Robbie Land Shark Dolphin Player Stadium, or whatever it is called these days. The Canes have gone 2-2 at home in front of the home 'faithful', while the Hokies are absolutely atrocious on the road, going 0-4. Virginia Tech is 0-5 ATS in its past five on the road, 1-4 ATS in its past five ACC games, and just 5-15-1 ATS in its past 21 overall. Miami, on the other hand, is a perfect 5-0 ATS in its past five ACC games, 4-1 ATS in its past five overall, and 4-1 ATS in the past five coming off a bye. That being said, that even makes New Orleans Hornets rookie Anthony Davis raise an eyebrow when you see the Hokies are favored by 1.5. This seems like a slam dunk play for the Hurricanes, especially since QB Stephen Morris and RB Duke Calhoun are back practicing and ready to go full bore. Here is the reason for VT being favored, however: the Hokies are 5-0 ATS in its past five trips to Miami, 5-1 ATS in the past six meetings, and the road team is 6-2 ATS in the past eight. However, those were good Virginia Tech teams, and some marginal Miami teams. While the Canes are still mediocre, the Hokies are downright bad.
Saturday - Virginia at North Carolina State (ESPN3, 12:30 p.m. ET)
Matchup Three-Star Game
Virginia at North Carolina State
The Virginia Cavaliers enter play as the ACC's only winless team in conference play, while N.C. State finds itself one win away from becoming bowl eligible. UVA is 0-3 on the road this season, while State is 3-1 at Carter-Finley Stadium, including a shocking upset of then-No. 2 Florida State. All of the trends are not good for the Cavaliers. They are 1-9-1 ATS in their past 11 games, 0-5 ATS in their past five ACC battles, 0-4 ATS in their past four road games, 0-6 ATS against a team with a winning record, and 0-8-1 ATS in their past nine games on grass. Ouch. N.C. State is 5-0 ATS in their past five home games against a team with a losing road record, and 20-8-2 ATS in their past 30 home games. A little worrisome is their 2-5-1 ATS mark in the past eight overall. However, that doubt is washed away when you consider the home team is 6-1 ATS in the past seven meetings, and the Cavs are 1-4-1 ATS in their past six visits to Raleigh.
Saturday - Boston College at Wake Forest (GamePlan/ESPN3, 3:30 p.m. ET)
Matchup Two-Star Game
Boston College at Wake Forest
The ACC gets a bad rap, not for the teams at the top of the standings, but for games like this and the next one. Ugly. The Eagles gained their second W of the season last week in thrilling fashion against Maryland, and now look to gain their first road success of the season. While the Eagles are 4-1 ATS in their past five games in November, they are 1-4 ATS in their past five ACC games, 1-5 ATS in their past six overall, and 0-4 ATS in their past four road trips. For Wake, they are 6-1 ATS in their past seven against a team with a losing road record, and have had a couple of extra days to prepare for this one after getting belted by Clemson on Thursday night last week. The Deacs are also 4-1 ATS in their past five November games, so that trend, which isn't that meaningful anyway, is a wash. The Eagles are 4-1 ATS in their past five games with the Deacs, but the favorite is 4-1 ATS in the past five meetings. That being said, it's probably a good idea to steer clear of this line. However, the total looks good. The under is 20-6-1 in BC's past 27 games, and 16-5-1 in their past 22 ACC battles. In addition, the under is 35-16-1 in BC's past 52 road games overall. For Wake, the under is a perfect 8-0 in their past eight November battles, 9-3 in their past 12 overall, and 6-2 in their past eight ACC games. Plus, the under has cashed in the past seven Wake home contests.
Saturday - Georgia Tech at Maryland (ESPN3, 12:30 p.m. ET)
Matchup One-Star Game
Georgia Tech at Maryland
The Yellow Jackets are a hard team to figure. They looked good two weeks ago against BC, and then were busted at home by BYU last week. The Yellow Jackets are 1-4-1 ATS in their past six road contests, and they are 0-2 SU away from Atlanta this season. However, Maryland is 1-9 ATS in their past 10 games, and 2-8 ATS in their past 10 games. Also, they lost yet another quarterback, Caleb Rowe, to a season-ending injury. The Terps do not have any healthy scholarship quarterbacks, so they turn to freshman LB Shawn Petty. While the past eight games for Maryland have been decided by 10 or fewer points, and five by five or fewer points, Maryland is starting a linebacker at quarterback. That makes Georgia Tech somewhat of a tasty play, no? An under of 46.5 looks like the really good play, though, as Maryland ranks poorly on offense, and fourth overall in the nation in rushing defense.

  
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