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BOILERHONK’S PONKS FOR WEEK 1

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Let’s keep it rolling after a solid Week 0

My son is now 1 year old. What a world. He’s adorable. But he’ll need money for college assuming he doesn’t grow up to be a 6’4” point god or TikTok star and it still costs a pretty penny to attend.

So it’s time to keep feeding that 529 and what better way* to invest than college football picks.

Note: there are much better ways to invest money and neither I, nor BHGP, are liable for any losses you may endure as a result of any “advice.”


The ground rules are a little different this season. We’re gonna keep it simple so each wager makes potential payout in approximately single unit payouts. Not sure we’re proving anything with the weird bankroll up/down dealio. That math was tricky.

Still, probably won’t have more than 5 bets in any given week. Also...Big Ten games only. For now.


Recap:

Illinois +7 v. Nebraska +1u
Illinois SU +2.2u

To use the words of one Aaron Torres of Bachelorette/Bachelor In Paradise fame, watching Bret Bielema coach a game in the Big Ten was “like watching a dolphin in the ocean. Beautiful doing something he was born to do.” I’m paraphrasing a bit, but it was an absolute blast seeing an Illinois team do what classic Wisconsin teams did against non-Iowa teams. I hope he does it 10 more times this regular season.

As for Scott Frost & Nebraska...I simply could not feel better about the under 6.5 win bet I have circulating. I have but one regret, not betting more.


Introducing a new segment! The live bet which made me reach for my wallet but ultimately not pull the trigger on:

The Nebraska/Illinois line dipped as low as 41.5 and was incredibly enticing for the over. The first half line also reached as low as 18.5. Both hit! I didn’t! :(

(Live betting is an unwritten rule for me to avoid during PONKS)


A little immediate reaction:

9/2, 7:00p - Ohio State Buckeyes (-14 | -600) at Minnesota Golden Gophers (+450 | O/U 62)

I liked the over here, and took it at 58.5 with a boost. I posted the math on Twitter. I’ll recap next week.

As far as this week’s Big Ten slate, here’s where the rest stand.

9/3, 8:00p - Michigan State Spartans (+140 | O/U 46) at Northwestern Wildcats (-3 | -165)
9/4, 11:00a - Western Michigan Broncos (+615 | O/U 67) at Michigan Wolverines (-17 | -865)
9/4, 11:00a - Penn State Nittany Lions (+185 | O/U 50) at Wisconsin Badgers (-5.5 | -225)
9/4, 11:00a - Temple Owls (+495 | O/U 52) at Rutgers Scarlet Knights (-14.5 | -690)
9/4, 11:00a - Fordam Rams at Nebraska Cornhuskers (no lines yet)
9/4, 2:30p - West Virginia Mountaineers (-2.5 | -140) at Maryland Terrapins (+120 | O/U 57)
9/4, 2:30p - Indiana Hoosiers (+160 | O/U 46) at Iowa Hawkeyes (-4 | -190)
9/4, 6:00p - Oregon State Beavers (+225 | O/U 69) at Purdue Boilermakers (-7 | -275)
9/4, 6:30p - UT-San Antonio Road Runners (+175 | O/U 50) at Illinois Fighting Illini (-5 | -210)

Teams I don’t have any feeling on right now... Michigan State, Northwestern, Michigan, Rutgers, Maryland, and Purdue. We’re not going to write those games off just yet but I simply don’t have a good feel about.

But my ears are incredibly perked by what’s happening at in Purdue’s athletic department (h/t Ben Ross):

Maybe he’s just joining Iowa’s department??

Of the remaining games, the one simplest to distill is Penn State +5.5 . I simply think they are no worse than Wisconsin and the line is too high.

Next, we got some maths to work through but I like it.

  • The over is 5-13-1 in games where Iowa is the home favorite since 2017
  • In instances where the O/U line is 46 OR LESS, the over is 10-12 (5-7 when Iowa is favored)

In other words, there’s no line too low for Iowa football. Kirk and company can LIMBO. My pet theory is that Hawkeye football has mastered the game they want to roll out with Brian as OC when all the cards - i.e. being home favorites - are in their favor. (Iowa is 17-2 straight up)

So the pick is hold your nose and take Indiana/Iowa UNDER 46 (I got it at 45).

That just leaves Illinois & UT-San Antonio once we filter out all the teams I don’t like. This one is for the juice but I still like Illinois and believe the line to be too low. Illinois -5

Returning to the teams I can’t feel out...Northwestern. There’s a number simply too lopsided not to take part in. In games where they’re the home favorite over the last 5 seasons, the over is 4-16-0. Pat Fitzgerald & Kirk Ferentz are the “Spidermen pointing at each other” meme. Michigan State/Northwestern UNDER 46 and let’s live a little on a Friday night.


And there you have it. Let’s keep it rolling!

This week:
Ohio State at Minnesota over 58.5 (+1)
Michigan State at Northwestern under 46 (1.1 to win 1)
Penn State +5.5 at Wisconsin (1.1 to win 1)
Indiana at Iowa under 45 (1.1 to win 1)
Illinois -5 vs UT-San Antonio (1.1 to win 1)

Season record:
Overall: 3-0-0 (+4.2 u)
ATS: 1-0-0 (+1.0 u)
SU: 1-0 (+2.2u)
O/U: 1-0-0 (+1 u)

Futures bets:
Penn State over 8.5 wins (1.1 to win 1)
Illinois over 3.5 wins (1.65 to win 1)
Nebraska under 6.5 wins (1.1 to win 1)
Michigan State under 5 wins (1.05 to win 1)
Penn State to win the conference (0.5 to win 2.25)