Tuesday, December 27, 2011

College Football Bettors Preview- Military Bowl and Holiday Bowl

by John Huffstetler

Plays- 5-2
Leans- 5-1

Wednesday 4:30 PM EST- Military Bowl- Toledo (8-4) (-3) vs. Air Force (7-5) O/U 70.5- Two efficient top 30 offenses square off in Washington DC tomorrow with a strong chance for fireworks. Like every MAC team (outside of Temple), Toledo struggles to stop opposing offenses, ranking 86th in the country in Opponents Yards Per Play (YPP). Their offense is nothing short of dominant, ranking 13th in YPP and 8th in points scored. Like fellow MAC member, Western Michigan, they are the definition of an "over" team. Meanwhile, Air Force is equally strong offensively ranking 2nd in the nation in rush yards per game and 27th in YPP. Their defense is nothing spectacular either allowing 5.6 YPP, good for 76th in the nation.

Analyzing both teams success this season, Toledo's resume impresses more. Although they played in a weaker conference, the Rockets dominated conference play with only one loss by 3 to Northern Illinois. They also played a formidable out of conference schedule, losing close games to Ohio St and Syracuse (even though they won against Cuse- Remember the missed extra point call) and getting handled by Boise St. Air Force played in the tougher conference, but failed to win a single game this year against above .500 competition (including a road beating by Notre Dame and home losses to Wyoming, TCU, and SD St.). The conference as a whole has been unimpressive this season outside of Boise St. (1-3 overall ATS), and is already 0-1 head-to-head against the MAC.

Play- Play Toledo -3 and the Over at 70.5. The Over will be my first 2 unit play of the bowl season (double your standard bet). This game should be high scoring and I expect Toledo to get the better end of this shootout.

8:00 EST- Holiday Bowl- Texas (7-5) (-3.5) vs. California (7-5) O/U 47.5- Two teams that struggled to find offensive continuity this season square off in the Holiday Bowl this season. Texas, while establishing a strong rushing attack, never found continuity at the QB position, switching between Case McCoy and David Ash. As a result, they never consistently established strong offensive outputs all year against high-caliber competition (averaging just 23.9 ppg against bowl teams). Despite playing 9 bowl teams this year, they managed to rank an impressive 12th defensively in opponents yards per play, good for 1st in a loaded Big 12.

Cal similarly struggled to establish offensive success against their bowl-bound opponents, averaging just 24.3 ppg. Their defense statistically does not match up with Texas', however, as Cal ranked just 56th in defensive YPP against weaker competition. They also struggled mightily away from home with their two road wins coming against a weak Colorado team in OT and a backsliding Ariz St team in the regular season finale.

Play- Slight lean Texas -3.5. I'm hoping the line will drop to 3 and become playable again, but laying the hook with a team that struggles offensively doesn't interest me. Lean under the total of 47.5. I think this is an acceptable play, but I'm worried that the offense could be so bad that it actually allows the defense to score a few points and provides the opposing offenses with short fields.

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Feel free to email me at jhuffmm@yahoo.com

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