College Football Picks: Central Florida vs. Houston Betting Odds and Predictions
by Aaron Smith - 11/5/2010
The matchup between the Central Florida Knights and the Houston Cougars was expected to be one of the biggest in Conference USA history when the season started. Now Houston QB Case Keenum is out for the year and the team has other injury problems. However, they are still leading the Conference USA West Division. Central Florida is unbeaten in conference play, and they lead the East Division. Houston may not have all of its stars, but this is still a huge game for both of these teams.
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College Football Picks: The Offenses
UCF is led by quarterback Jeff Godfrey. Godfrey isn’t a strong passer, but he is mobile and contributes quite a bit in the running game. The Knights offense is really all about the running game. They average 200 yards per game on the ground, and they have several talented ball carriers. Ronnie Weaver is the main man in the backfield, and he already has 10 touchdowns this year. Jonathan Davis, Brendan Kelly, and Latavius Murray are all solid runners as well. Don’t expect this team to do much passing, so it will be up to Houston’s defense to stop the run.
Houston had one of the best offenses in the nation last year, but without Keenum they don’t have the same offense capabilities this season. Keenum and backup quarterback Cotton Turner were both hurt in Houston’s loss at UCLA this year, which has forced freshman David Piland into the starting role. Piland started out slowly, but he has really caught fire of late. In the Cougars last three games Piland has thrown nine touchdowns and just one interception. This is a still an offense that relies on the passing game first, but Bryce Beall and Michael Hayes give them a formidable tailback tandem as well. Even with all their injury trouble, Houston is averaging 41.6 points per game.
College Football Predictions: The Defenses
Central Florida is a team that wins games because of their strength on the defensive side of the ball. The UCF defense has been the best in the conference so far this year. They are ranked in the Top 16 nationally in every major defensive category. This is a unit that is allowing only 16.5 points per game so far this year. The linebackers are terrific, but there really isn’t a weakness on this defense. It will be interesting to see how they fare against the high-powered Cougars offense.
Houston’s defense has been no better than mediocre this year. The secondary has played fairly well, but as a unit they tend to struggle against teams that run the football well. The Cougars are allowing 28 points per game so far this season. The defense is allowing opponents to convert on 48.3 percent of their third down conversion attempts. Houston will need to gear up to stop the run in this game.
Central Florida vs. Houston Betting Odds and Line Movement
There has already been a lot of line movement on this game. UCF opened as 4-point road favorites, but they are now favored by just 1.5 or 2.0 depending on the book. The posted total opened at 60 points and has been bet up to 61.5 points.
Central Florida vs. Houston Betting Trends
Central Florida has done a stellar job on the road over the course of the last couple years. The Knights are 10-1 ATS in their last 11 road games. Houston is 11-4 ATS in their last 15 home games. The ‘over’ is 4-0 in Central Florida’s last four games overall. The ‘over’ is also 6-0 in Houston’s last six home games. The last three meetings between these two have gone ‘over’ the posted total.
College Football Picks: Central Florida vs. Houston Predictions
This should be an entertaining Friday night football matchup. Houston’s offense seems to be getting back on track. UCF should be able to run the ball effectively against a weak front seven for Houston. The trends say the ‘over’ is the play, and I think that is the way to go in this game.
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