For the second straight week, Pitt will head into a matchup as a favorite. The Panthers face Wake Forest on Saturday and, currently, are favored over the Demon Deacons by 5 1⁄2 to 6 points.
That line has actually come down a little since opening at 8 1⁄2 points in Pitt’s favor. I could see it closer to that opening line, to be honest.
That might sound somewhat surprising to Pitt fans who think it should be smaller. But oddsmakers are also grappling with the fact that Pitt is on a roll, crushed Virginia Tech by 30, and has the opportunity to win the Division.
It’s a tough call. I can see why Pitt fans might think it sounds a little on the high side for a road game against a team that just pulled off an upset over a ranked team. But the Demon Deacons are abysmal against the run and that’s where Pitt excels. They’ve also given up a ton of points this season so even if they score themselves, they could still lose by double digits. Further, they’re also facing a backup quarterback (though, said backup played very well last weekend, as I wrote in the preview). I think it’s tough to take all of that into consideration and make Pitt something like a three-point favorite. I’d expect that most people would take Pitt in that case and the objective with any line is always to get an equal number of people on both sides.
There’s no doubt that Wake Forest can win this game but you can say that about any game, really. In terms of developing a line here, there’s also a pretty strong case to be made that Pitt could win comfortably. I’m not sure it ends up that way, but the possibility is there with Pitt’s running game coupled with Wake’s porous run defense. Pitt’s backs have been playing like sharks that smell blood in the water.
What about you? What do you think about the line this week? Vote in the poll below.
What do you think about the line for this weekend’s game (of six points in favor of Pitt)?
This poll is closed
Pitt favored by too much
Pitt not favored by enough
The line is about right