Friday Night College Football Betting: Temple Owls at Cincinnati Bearcats

Temple Owls at Cincinnati Bearcats
Nippert Stadium – Cincinnati Bearcats

Friday, October 11, 2013, 8:30 pm Eastern, TV: ESPN
Opening Line: Cincinnati -19
Current Line: Cincinanti -20 1/2
Opening Total: 51
Current Total: 51 1/2
Opening Money Line: Cincinnati -1600 / Temple +930
Current Money Line: Cincinnati -1600 / Temple +930

Cincinnati is a heavy favorite at home Friday night against winless Temple.

Cincinnati is a heavy favorite at home Friday night against winless Temple.

The 3-2 Cincinnati Bearcats host the 0-5 Temple Owls Friday night in American Athletic Conference action Friday. both teams are looking for their first conference win as the Bearcats are 0-1 and the Owls are 0-2. Temple leads the series 9-5-1, but Cincinnati is 3-2-1 at home in the series. The Bearcats have won three straight against the Owls  including 34-10 in Philadelphia last year.

Temple is coached by Matt Rhule. The Owls have road losses at Notre Dame 28-6 and at Idaho 26-24, along with home losses to Houston 22-13, Fordham 30-29 and last week against Louisville 30-7. Temple is 2-3 ATS and the total is 1-4 this season. The Owls were 32.5 point underdogs against Louisville and the total was 58.5.

Louisville scored the first 30 points of the game but had to settle for 3 field goals of 25 yards or less. Temple finally got on the board with 38 seconds left to make the final 30-7. Louisville had 525 total yards including 348 passing yards. The Cardinals held the Owls to 255 total yards including 48 rushing yards. Temple had 2 turnovers.

Temple is being outscored 27-16 this season. The Owls are #118 nationally in scoring out of 125 teams. Temple is averaging 342.5 yards per game on offense, including 204.8 passing and 137.6 rushing. The Owls are #105 in total offense. On defense, Temple is allowing 518 yards per game including 327.6 passing and 190.4 rushing yards. The Owls are #90 in rush defense, #122 in total offense and #124 in pass defense. Somehow Temple is #69 in points allowed. The Owls are -6 in turnovers with only 2 takeaways. Temple does not have an interception on defense this season. The Owls are averaging 44 penalty yards per game and opponents are averaging 67. Temple is 33/81 on third and fourth down conversions and opponents are 36/82. The Owls have forced 9 sacks and allowed 14 this season. Temple is 11/16 scoring in the red zone with 10 touchdowns, and opponents are 21/26 scoring in the red zone with only 8 touchdowns.

Temple quarterback Connor Reilly started the season but was benched last week against Louisville. P.J. Walker came in in relief and Rhule said Walker will start against Cincinnati. Reilly could see some snaps though. Reilly has thrown for 771 yards with 2 touchdowns and 2 interceptions, along with 34 carries for 101 yards and a touchdown. Walker has completed 50% of his passes for 195 yards with a touchdown and a pick, along with 24 rushing yards. Running back Kenneth Harper has 56 carries, 250 yards and 6 touchdowns, along with 11 catches for 123 yards. Zaire Williams has 43 carries for 218 yards, along with 5 catches for 66 yards. Receiver Ryan Alderman has 19 catches, 282 yards and a touchdown. Jalen Fitzpatrick has 17 catches, 139 yards and a touchdown. Chris Coyer has 12 catches, 113 yards and a touchdown. John Christopher has 10 catches for 90 yards.

Cincinnati is coached by Tommy Tuberville. The Bearcats have home wins over Purdue 42-7 and Northwestern State 66-9, along with a road win at Miami-(OH) 14-0. Cincinnati has losses at Illinois 45-17 and last week at previously winless South Florida 26-20. The Bearcats are 2-3 ATS and the total is also 2-3 this season. Cincinnati was a 10.5 point favorite at South Florida and the total was 46.5.

Cincinnati never led against South Florida and found themselves down 26-6 entering the fourth. The Bulls didn’t do much on offense as they returned a blocked field goal and a fumble for touchdowns, and kicked four field goals. The Bearcats would score 2 fourth quarter touchdowns to pull within 26-20 with 2 minutes to go. South Florida would recover the onside kick. Cincinnati would get the ball back with a few seconds left at their own 22. The Bearcats tried a few laterals but fumbled and it was recovered by the Bulls. It was one of four Cincinnati turnovers and South Florida had one.  The Bearcats had 350 total yards, and South Florida had 241 total yards.

Cincinnati is outscoring teams 32-17 this season. The Bearcats are #20 nationally in points allowed. Cincinnati is averaging 453.8 yards per game on offense including 254 passing and 199.8 rushing yards. On defense, the Bearcats are allowing 251 yards per game including 152.2 passing and 98.8 rushing yards per game. Cincinnati is #4 in total defense, #7 against the pass, and #11 against the rush.  The Bearcats are -3 in turnovers with 11 giveaways. Cincinnati is averaging 60 penalty yards per game and opponents are averaging 44. The Bearcats are 35/75 on third and fourth down conversions and opponents are 21/73. Cincinnati has forced 12 sacks and allowed 4 this season. The Bearcats are 17/22 scoring in the red zone with 15 touchdowns and opponents are 6/8 with 3 touchdowns. Cincinnati has allowed 3 defensive touchdowns and a special teams touchdown.

Cincinnati quarterback Munchie Legaux broke his leg early in the season and is out for the year. Legaux was splitting the snaps with Brendon Kay, and Kay is now the full time starter. Kay has completed 67.3% of his passes for 816 yards with 7 touchdowns and 4 interceptions, along with 24 carries, 72 rushing yards and a touchdown. Running back Hosey Williams has 58 carries, 324 yards and 4 touchdowns, along with 2 catches. Ralph Abernathy has 64 carries, 309 yards, and 2 touchdowns, along with 7 catches for 55 yards. Tion Green has 25 carries, 125 yards and 2 touchdowns, plus a catch. Receiver Anthony McClung has 18 catches, 234 yards and a touchdown. Max Morrison has 12 catches, 223 yards and 2 touchdowns. Shaq Washington has 24 catches for 210 yards. Chris Moore has 13 catches for 175 yards and 2 touchdowns. Mekale McKay has 5 catches for 94 yards with 3 touchdowns. Four little used wide receivers and 2 defensive backs are listed as questionable or out Friday night against Temple.

 

Temple is 5-1 ATS after a double digit home loss, 6-2 in Friday games, 20-7 after gaining less than 275 total yards, 18-8-1 in October, 3-7 after a straight up loss of 20 points or more,  3-8 overall, 3-9 after a straight up loss, 1-4 after a cover, after allowing more than 450 total yards, and on fieldturf, 1-6 after scoring less than 20 points, and after allowing 280 passing yards or more, and 1-7 against teams with winning records.

Cincinnati is 5-0 ATS after a straight up win, 7-1 against teams with losing road records, 8-2 at home, 8-3 against teams with losing records, 14-6 overall, 0-4 after allowing 275 total yards and 170 passing yards.

Temple has one of the worst defenses in the country except for when teams get in the red zone and suddenly Temple becomes Alabama. Cincinnati should be able to move the ball against the Temple defense, but Temple will struggle against the staunch Bearcat defense. I don’t see a lot of points scored in this game, so I like temple to stay with in the 20.5 point spread.

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