Mountain West College Football Picks: Nevada Wolf Pack at Air Force Falcons
Nevada Wolf Pack at Air Force Falcons
Friday, October 26, 2012, 8:00 pm Eastern, TV: CBS Sports Network
Falcon Stadium – Colorado Springs, Colorado
Opening Line: Nevada -2 1/2
Current Line: Nevada -3 1/2
Opening Total: 65
Current Total: 66
Opening Money Line: Nevada -160 / Air Force +140
Current Money Line: Nevada -175 / Air Force +155
Midway through the Mountain West season, Boise St is the only undefeated team at 3-0, but 4 other schools are 3-1 including Nevada, Fresno St, San Diego St, and Air Force. The Nevada Wolf pack travel to Colorado Springs Friday night to take on the Air Force Falcons in a key conference clash. It is the first ever meeting between the schools.
Nevada is 6-2 this season under coach Chris Ault. The Wolf Pack’s two losses were each by one point at home to South Florida 32-31 and last week against San Diego St 39-38 in overtime. Nevada has home wins over Northwestern St 45-34 and Wyoming 35-28 in overtime. The Wolf Pack also have road wins over Cal 31-24, Hawaii 69-24, Texas St 34-21, and UNLV 42-37. Nevada was a 7 point favorite in the SDSU game and the total was 66.5. The Wolf Pack are 2-6 ATS and the total is 4-3 this season.
Nevada is averaging 541.6 yards per game on offense, including 269.1 passing and 272 rushing yards. The Wolf Pack are in the top 10 nationally in total offense and rushing. Nevada is outscoring teams 41-30 this season. The Wolf Pack are dead even in turnovers, having given up and forced 11 turnovers. Nevada averages 79.5 penalty yards per game and has allowed 7 sacks this season. Nevada is 72/133 on third and fourth down conversions and 37/44 scoring in the red zone with 32 touchdowns. On defense, Nevada is allowing 411.1 yards per game, including 255.2 passing yards and 155.9 rushing yards. The Wolf Pack have forced 18 sacks this season.
Nevada quarterback Cody Fajardo has completed 156 of 223 passes (70%) for 1,769 yards with 12 touchdowns and 3 interceptions, along with 92 carries, 587 yards and 8 touchdowns. Back-up Devin Combs saw significant action against Wyoming and started the UNLV game when Fajardo was injured. Fajardo returned last week in the SDSU game. Combs has 384 passing yards with 4 touchdowns and an interception, along with 34 carries, 177 yards and a touchdown. Running back Stefphon Jefferson has 251 carries, 1,248 yards and 15 touchdowns along with 18 catches, 155 yards, and a touchdown. He leads the nation in rushing. Nick Hale has 26 carries, 152 yards and 2 touchdowns. Receiver Brandon Wimberly has 47 catches, 608 yards and 2 touchdowns. Richy Turner has 41 catches, 511 yards and 2 touchdowns. Tight end Zach Sudfeld has 30 catches 354 yards and 6 touchdowns. Aaron Bradley has 28 catches, 298 yards and 3 touchdowns.
Air Force is 4-3 under coach Troy Calhoun. The Falcons have road losses at Michigan 31-25 and UNLV 38-35 along with a home loss to Navy 28-21 in overtime. Air Force has home wins over Idaho St 49-21, Colorado St 42-21, and last week against New Mexico 28-23, along with a 28-27 win at Wyoming. The Falcons are 2-5 ATS and the total is 2-4 this season. Air Force was a 10.5 point favorite in the New Mexico game and the total was 57.
Air Force is averaging 464.4 yards per game on offense, including 110.9 passing and 353.6 rushing yards. The Falcons are #2 nationally in rushing and #122 out of 124 teams in passing. Air Force is outscoring teams 33-27 this season. The Falcons are -2 in turnovers. Air Force has not given up a sack this season. The Falcons are 63/112 on third and fourth down conversions, and 21/30 scoring in the red zone with 20 touchdowns. On defense, Air Force is allowing 427.4 yards per game including 205.4 passing yards and 222 rushing yards. The Falcons are #111 in rushing defense. Air Force has forced 5 sacks and 8 turnovers this season. Falcon opponents are 57/112 on third and fourth down conversions and 24/27 scoring in the red zone with 19 touchdowns.
Air Force quarterback Connor Dietz has completed 42 of 69 passes for 708 yards and 5 touchdowns, along with 80 carries, 459 yards and 3 interceptions. He is probable with a hand injury. Running back Cody Getz has 122 carries, 928 yards, and 8 touchdowns. He is doubtful with an ankle injury Friday night. Ty MacArthur has 30 carries, 299 yards, and 2 touchdowns. He is also the leading receiver with 18 catches, 346 yards and a touchdown. Jon Lee has 48 carries, 237 yards and 3 touchdowns. Wes Cobb has 49 catches, 197 yards and 3 touchdowns. Mike DeWitt has 36 carries, 125 carries, and 2 touchdowns. Receiver Drew Coleman has 8 catches 215 yards and 3 touchdowns. Ten Falcon players are listed as questionable or out including 5 defensive players and 2 other little used running backs.
Nevada is 4-0 ATS in Friday games, 4-1 after gaining more than 450 yards, 3-1-1 in road games against teams with winning road records, 2-8 after failing to cover, 1-5-1 after passing for more than 280 yards, 0-5-1 against teams with winning records, 0-5 in October, and 0-4 overall.
Air Force is 5-11 ATS after a straight up win, 5-12 after allowing more than 200 yards rushing, 2-5 in October, 6-15 on grass, 4-10 after allowing less than 170 passing yards, 3-9 at home, 1-4 after rushing for more than 200 yards, overall, and after passing for less than 170 passing yards.
These are the top 2 rushing teams in the Mountain West. Not really surprising with Ault’s Pistol offense and the triple option that Air Force runs. Neither team is good at stopping the run however. Air Force is much worse though, and I think that will be the difference. Nevada wins a tough road game.
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