College Football Predictions: South Florida vs. Cincinnati Betting Odds and Picks
by Aaron Smith - 10/22/2010
The Cincinnati Bearcats will be showcased for a second straight week on ESPN Friday night football. This week, Cincinnati will host the South Florida Bulls in an important Big East matchup. The Big East is still wide open, and Cincinnati certainly has the talent to be near the top of the conference. South Florida is still establishing their identity under Skip Holtz, but they would love nothing better than to upset Cincinnati on national television. There will be plenty of talent on both sidelines this Friday night.
College Football Predictions: The Offenses
The South Florida Bulls have struggled mightily on offense all year. Quarterback B.J. Daniels has thrown 10 interceptions already this year, and turnovers have haunted this team in a big way. Daniels has a strong arm and decent mobility, but his decision-making must improve. The Bulls average just 157 yards through the air each game, which puts them 107th in the nation in passing offense. Moise Plancher is their leading runner, but this team lacks a playmaker at the tailback spot. At this point, South Florida has one of the worst offenses in the Big East.
The Cincinnati Bearcats offense took a little time to get going this year, but they seem to be humming along nicely right now. Zach Collaros has done a brilliant job at the quarterback spot for this team. Collaros already has 17 touchdown passes and just three interceptions. Isiah Pead averages 8.8 yards per carry, and he gives this offense a strong presence in the backfield. The Bearcats are averaging 30 points per game on the year. This is a balanced offense that is extremely dangerous.
College Football Predictions: The Defenses
The South Florida offense may be poor, but the defense is very talented. The Bulls are ranked in the top 20 defenses in the country in almost every single important statistic. They are giving up just 16.7 points per game so far this season. The front seven do a great job getting to the quarterback, which takes pressure off an inexperienced secondary. The Bulls have already notched up 17 sacks this year. The athleticism of this defense was on display last week when they held West Virginia’s talented offense to just 298 yards of total offense.
The Bearcats defense has been weak against the pass this year, but they have been stellar against the run. Cincinnati does a solid job keeping their opponent out of the end zone and minimizing the damage. The biggest weakness is in the secondary, but their lack of pressure on opposing quarterbacks is quite troubling as well. The Bearcats will need to be opportunistic on defense in this one, because South Florida has proven they will turn it over frequently.
South Florida vs. Cincinnati Betting Odds and Line Movement
The Cincinnati Bearcats opened as eight-point home favorites in this matchup. The line has been quite steady so far, with most books now showing the Bearcats as 7.5-point favorites. The posted total opened at 46 points. The public is betting heavily on the “over,” which has pushed the total up to 47.5 or 48, depending on the book.
South Florida vs. Cincinnati Betting Trends
Cincinnati has owned South Florida over the last few years. They have won four straight overall, and they are 6-0 ATS in their last six meetings with the Bulls. South Florida is just 1-4 ATS in their last five road games. Cincinnati is 3-8 ATS in their last 11 games overall. The ‘under’ is 4-0 in South Florida’s last four games.
College Football Predictions: South Florida vs. Cincinnati Betting Picks
At this point the Bulls look like a team that will have a difficult time scoring against anyone. The Bearcats appear to be righting the ship after a slow start, and I believe they will be able to score some points against this tough South Florida defense. I believe the best value on the board for this game is Cincinnati -7.5.
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