Bowl Season College Football Lock Picks

What is the USC vs Cal Spread?

Bowl Season College Football Lock Picks

The NCAA football regular season is behind us and we are on the proverbial "eve" of the 2016-17 college football bowl season that will feature 82 combatants fighting for 41 Bowl Titles. That’s a lot of football.

If you need assistance in breaking through all the noise, use my Bowl Season college football lock picks to bet and win big. Let’s get started.

Bowl Season College Bowl Football Lock Picks

Can South Florida take it to South Carolina in the Birmingham Bowl on Dec. 29? What’s going to happen in the Cotton Bowl when 8 Wisconsin takes on 15 Western Michigan? Can favored 9 USC take it to dog 5 Penn State in the 2017 Rose Bowl?

What: Birmingham Bowl
Who:
South Florida vs South Carolina
When:  Thursday, Dec. 29 at 2:00 pm ET
Where: Legion Field, Birmingham, AL
TV: ESPN
Odds: USF -11

Analysis: It doesn’t matter what the point spread ends up being in this game, there’s a high probability that South Florida beats South Carolina by at least 21 points in this game. So, unless the spread ends up at South Florida -21, which won’t happen, the Bulls are the easy pick against the spread in this one.

How do I know that?  I know that because I’ve seen both teams play plenty of games this season. But, just in case you don’t believe me, check out some stats:

South Florida went 10-2 straight up this season. Their only 2 losses were to 11 ranked Florida State and 24 ranked Temple. The Bulls went 8-4 against the spread.

South Carolina went 6-6 straight up this season. The Gamecocks went 5-6 against the spread. Among South Carolina’s non-ATS covers were games versus terrible Kentucky, Div. II Western Carolina, and UMass.

South Florida all the way in the Birmingham Bowl.

Pick: South Florida

What: Cotton Bowl
Who: #
15 Western Michigan vs #8 Wisconsin
When:  Monday Jan. 2 at 1:00 pm ET
Where: AT&T Stadium, Arlington, TX
TV: ABC 
Odds: Wisconsin -7.5

Analysis: The big question in this game is if Western Michigan’s offense can break down Wisconsin’s defense. Most teams can’t break the Badgers’ D. Penn State’s explosion in the second half of the Big Ten Championship, where they scored 24 points to beat Wisconsin 38 to 31, is an anomaly.

There are very few teams that can take it to the Badgers like Penn State did. That’s why I’m confident that Wisconsin covers the spread in this game. On average, Wisconsin only allows 15.5 points per game. The Badgers won’t have to be that good against Western Michigan’s offense in the Cotton Bowl.

Why? Wisconsin’s D has room for error because Western Michigan’s defense allowed teams like

Northern Iowa, Eastern Michigan, Ohio, Toledo, and Georgia Southern to score 30 points or more against it during the regular season.

Pick: Wisconsin

What: Rose Bowl
Who:
#5 Penn State vs #9 USC
When:  Monday, Jan. 2 at 5:00 pm ET
Where: Levi’s Stadium, Santa Clara, CA
TV: ESPN
Odds: USC -7

Analysis: On paper, this looks like a competitive game. But the fact is that Penn State’s offense goes up against the best defense its faced this season. Yes, you read that right. USC’s defense is better than either Michigan’s or Ohio State’s. The Trojans’ defense came together so well late in the season that it held California to 24 points, Oregon to 20, Washington to 13, UCLA to 14 and Notre Dame to 27 in USC’s final 5 games. The Trojans’ offense turned into a juggernaut as well. USC scored 36 against UCLA and 45 against Notre Dame in their final 2 games of the regular season.

I like how Penn State got better as the season wore on. But any team that gave up 31 points to Indiana has no shot against the USC Trojans.

Pick: USC