I was initially planning on having a Saturday Bowl game article for you guys, but as these games have approached, the two Friday games quickly became my favorite spots to target this weekend for college football.
So I’ll have two Friday plays here (including a lunchtime special), but will still have you covered with a couple of NFL plays come Saturday. Here’s what I’m looking at:
2:00 p.m. ET: Buffalo vs. Charlotte: BUF -6.5
These are two 7-5 teams, with Buffalo also going 7-5 against the spread, and Charlotte 6-6 ATS. Buffalo won and covered its neutral field game this season, and while Charlotte went 2-0 at neutral sites, it split at 1-1 ATS.
The Bulls finished the season on a 5-2 straight up and 6-1 ATS run, and they developed a dominant defense against the rush. We’re looking at strong wind and rain in this game, which means both squads should have to rely on the ground game. This favors Buffalo strongly on both sides of the ball. This spread opened at 4.5, and has been bet towards Buffalo.
7:30 p.m. ET: Utah State vs. Kent State: Kent St +7
Utah State is 7-5 both SU and ATS, while Kent State is just 6-6 SU, but 8-4 ATS. Utah State went 1-1 SU and ATS at neutral sites, and although Kent State lost its neutral field game, it did cover.
But enough of the numbers, there’s a bigger storyline to this game. Utah State star QB Jordan Love (32/6 touchdown-to-interception ratio in 2018) and leading rusher Gerold Bright were reportedly arrested for possession of weed last weekend.
This left bettors speculating about suspensions while the school remained mum on the subject earlier this week. Aggies head coach Gary Andersen cleared things up at yesterday’s Frisco Bowl presser, telling the media, “There was never any thought that [Love and Bright] wouldn’t play,”
Nevertheless, it’s been a distraction all week. Furthermore, Love has already announced his intentions of leaving school early for the NFL Draft.
Love was only one of two returning starters on offense from last year’s 11-2 squad. His numbers predictably declined, as he threw only 17 TD passes and was intercepted 16 times. Some in the media have even speculated that if Love doesn’t hear what he wants in terms of feedback from the NFL about his draft status, he might grad transfer to Texas Tech and rejoin Matt Wells.
Whatever the case, the feeling here is that Kent State is more focused. The Golden Flashes are probably the inferior team, but many bowl game results are based on motivation, not talent.
Kent State has covered in six of its last seven games entering the Frisco Bowl, and it appears poised to pounce on a distracted Utah State squad. This line opened at 9.5, and has been mashed down to 6.5 and even 6 in some places. I’m looking to find a 6.5 and buy it to 7 at -115 or -120, so we have that protection to push with the key number of seven. However, I think the Golden Flashes keep this one tight and take the cash.