Dave’s Free Play, Monday 7/21/14

  • July 21, 2014

It’s time to kick off the college football previews. This won’t be the standard stuff, as the entire aim here is going to be focusing on schools that could represent spread value, at least early on, in either direction. So the majority of these rundowns will probably be on teams not too many people care about, but that bettors can hopefully earn a profit with.

First up, out of the Mountain West Conference, it’s Wyoming. The Cowboys had a rough time of it last season, and at first glance they look pretty mediocre heading into the new campaign. Their star QB, Brett Smith, has moved on and major scheme changes are taking place on both sides of the ball.

New head coach Craig Bohl is going West Coast with the attack and he’s a 4-3 guy on defense. It usually takes a team time to adjust to changes such as these. But I’m expecting a fairly quick transition in Laramie, and in any event, I can see this team being far more competitive than they were a season ago despite some glaring question marks in terms of personnel.

The primary reason for my optimism is Bohl and what amounts to addition by subtraction. I’m very impressed with Bohl, and not only off what he accomplished at North Dakota State with three straight national titles. I see the biggest improvement in Wyoming’s overall attitude.

The Cowboys had some serious issues last season. The team started off playing very well, as they rebounded from a close opening loss at Nebraska with three consecutive wins. But then came the loss at Texas State in rain-delayed marathon, and even though Wyoming got it to 4-2 with a win vs. New Mexico, they were never the same team.  The defense virtually quit, the only remaining win came in a crazy OT game with Hawaii, and by season’s end it was clearly time for a major overhaul on the sidelines.

Everything I’m hearing about this year’s is upbeat. Maybe that’s more attitude than talent, but the opinion here is that the talent level here wasn’t nearly as bad as the record indicated last season. Replacing Smith under center is definitely a problem, and I don’t think there’s enough to prevent Wyoming from struggling at times this season.

But I also think we’re going to be able to cash a few tickets with this team simply based on the coaching upgrade and the style of play. Wyoming is going to be a physical team that runs the football and plays much more aggressively on defense. And most importantly, unlike the squad we saw in the second half of last season, this Wyoming entry will be play with pride and as a unit. I expect a team that will win its share of games while hanging much tougher against its better opposition, and that should make the Cowboys a potential go with team at the betting windows.

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Just a 1-2 Sunday on the diamond, but another okay week in the books as the positive grind continues. Take advantage of my current special and score two full months of all my plays in all my sports for the price of one. That significantly lowers the overall cost, so that even more recreational bettors can get involved. Use the “buy now” feature to subscribe or shoot an email my way at cokin@cox.net for additional info!

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The Yankees walked off with the win against the Reds on Sunday, so a good result with the free play. I’ll look to keep it going with a Monday night road dog.

07/21 07:10 PM   MLB   (923) NEW YORK METS  at  (924) SEATTLE MARINERS

Take: (923) NEW YORK METS +105

This is a situational spot I think offers a good chance of producing a win. The Mariners are off a very draining set of games with the division rival Angels and I think they could be a bit flat tonight. Letdowns are more frequently brought up as potential factors in football and basketball more than in baseball, but that doesn’t mean they don’t exist.

The Mariners/Angels series was as hard fought as it gets. All three games were intense battles, with two extra inning affairs and 6-5 Halos win on Sunday with plenty of emotion on display both ways. Let’s just say that this would have been a great spot for Seattle to enjoy a day off, but that’s not the case.

Jon Niese is apparently healthy again, and he should therefore be a tough nut for the Mariners hitters. The Mets lefty has actually had a really nice season when he’s been able to take his regular turn. The Mets have been a solid squad when Niese pitches, and only a few of the Mariners have ever faced him.

The sight unseen factor is in play for Roenis Elias as well, as none of the Mets have stepped in against him. But Elias, after a surprising run in the earlier part of the season, has not been very effective lately and the Mets aren’t terrible offensively against lefties.

This is really one of those games where I see the situation being the trump card. On paper, it’s virtually a tossup. But after watching the high octane duels this weekend at Anaheim between the Mariners and Angels, this looms as a night where taking a shot against the Mariners makes lots of sense to me. I’m siding with the Mets as a small road dog to produce a winner this evening.