College Football Week 7 Betting Previews: Southern Miss Golden Eagles at UCF Knights

Brynn Harvey has 147 yards on the year for the UCF Knights, who will wrap up their tenure in the C-USA this season before moving on to the Big East next year.

Southern Miss-Central Florida
Time: 8 PM EST, Saturday
Spread: UCF -17.5
Total: 50.5
M/L: UCF -800, SOMI +600

Odds from Bookmaker

The UCF Knights stomped East Carolina in their last game, winning 40-20 at home against a Pirates squad that couldn’t find an answer for UCF after Quincy McDuffie returned a kickoff for a 99 yard TD. McDuffie also had a 64-yard TD reception, and Knights QB Blake Bortles threw for one TD and rushed for another.

Bortles beamed with confidence, saying “there wasn’t anything we ran that got stopped…we definitely want touchdowns as the end results, but even though some of those (drives) ended up with field goals, we still got points on the board.”

Scoring, indeed, has not been much of a problem for the Knights, who rank 48th in the nation with 32.2 points per game. The win over East Carolina was their highest scoring game since their 56-14 opening night win over Akron.

Bortles, just a sophomore, has a QB rating of 149.8 on the season and he’s thrown 10 TDs while having been intercepted five times. His completion ratio ranks about the same as it did as a freshman, 67.6 percent this year to 68.2 percent last year, but he saw only spotty play last year, with 110 attempted passes all year in his freshman season. Removing a tough game against Ohio State from the equation, and Bortles has thrown at least 134 QB rating in every game. Even against the tough Buckeyes defense, he still managed a 61 percent completion ratio.

Bortles’ greatness is why college football oddsmakers feel the Knights will dispose easily of this Southern Miss squad, as the Knights find themselves 17.5 point favorites.

The Southern Miss Golden Eagles have yet to win a game, and are one of the worst teams in Conference USA. This will be UCF’s last year in the C-USA, so this is an opportunity to put one last pounding to a conference rival before moving onto the Big East.

The Golden Eagles have had trouble scoring this year and rank near the bottom of the nation with only 16.4 points per game. If that wasn’t enough, their defense is awful too, giving up 35.2 points per game. If they are going to have any chance of covering this spread, it will be due to their rushing, which ranks at least middle of the road at 168.8 yards per game (59th in the nation).

Senior running back Desmond Johnson has 375 yards on the season on 60 carries with a TD. If he could get cruising to a big game, the Golden Eagles have an outside shot at keeping this within two touchdowns, but the UCF defense is tough and allows only 21.2 points per game. Braxton Miller of OSU had success rushing against the UCF D, but Johnson isn’t quite the talent that Miller is, so the Golden Eagles chances here are slim.

UCF Betting Trends:

Knights are 36-14-1 ATS in their last 51 after allowing less than 100 yards rushing the previous game, 12-5 ATS vs teams with losing records, 1-4 ATS in their last 5 following an SU win, 1-4 ATS in last 5 following an ATS win.

Southern Miss Betting Trends:

Golden Eagles are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 on grass, 12-4 ATS in their last 16 on the road vs team with winning road records, 5-2-1 ATS vs teams with winning records, 1-3-1 ATS following an ATS loss, and 1-5-1 ATS in their last 7 following an SU loss of more than 20 points.

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Posted by on Oct 12 2012. Filed under College Football, Headlines. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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