John Ryan – Virginia/USC Game Preview09/11/2010
Lane Kiffin will make is USC coaching debut tonight, but with arguably the worst off season in school history, his debut may be a muted event. USC is not bowl eligible and the fans may not be as excited as normal for the home opener. Still, does UVA even have a chance in this game? Unless, USC comes out completely unfocused and makes numerous mistakes and gives the ball away say five times, Virginia will lose this game.
Unfocused is exactly what the USC defense displayed last week at Hawaii allowing 588 total yards in an uninspiring 49-36 win. However, it was a different story on offense where that unit executed extremely well. Quarterback Barkley threw for five touchdowns completed 18 of 23 pass attempts gaining 257 yards.
UVA had their first opening win since 2005 beating Richmond 34-13. They have a bruising style of running game that if successful against the suspect USC defensive front will set up play action pass plays for quarterback Marc Verica. Keep an eye on the UVA running game early in this game and if they are getting a surge off of the line of scrimmage, they just might make this a far closer game. On the other side, if USC defense shows up focused and UVA can’t run the ball, then it will be a very long day for UVA.
Here is a successful system supporting USC that has produced a 29-8 ATS mark for 78.4% winners since 2000. Play on favorites of 10.5 to 21 points and is a team that won between 60% to 80% of their games played last season and is now playing a terrible team from last year that win <=25% of their games played last season.
If you believe that UVA will be successful running the ball then you may want to consider an ‘over’ play that has produced a 30-5 ATS record for 86% winners since 1992. Play over in the first two weeks of the season with all teams where the total is between 49.5 and 56 after allowing 6.25 or more yards per play in their previous game and with an experienced QB returning as starter.
Supporting UVA is the fact that USC is just 2-10 ATS after a game where they committed 1 or less turnovers over the last 3 seasons.