August 31, 2010

College Football Betting Preview: Arizona Wildcats vs. Toledo Rockets



Arizona Wildcats
(8-5, 6-7 ATS in 2009)

Toledo Rockets
(5-7, 5-7 ATS in 2009)

Friday night’s nationally televised NCAA football betting affair will come from the Glass Bowl, as the Toledo Rockets will look to spring the upset of the Arizona Wildcats.

The Wildcats are going to have a very, very questionable defense this season, and they could quite possibly find troubles against Toledo on Friday night. They were a respectable Pac-10 ‘D’ last year, averaging just 322.2 yards and 23.9 points per game allowed. QB Nick Foles is in dire need of yet another good year after he completed 64.3 percent of his passes for 2,466 yards with 19 scores and nine picks. However, the team’s top two running backs, Keola Antolin and Nick Grigsby only combined for nine TDs. The problem that Arizona could have this week is that this isn’t the premier game on the schedule out of conference. The non-conference game with Iowa on September 18th could be where sights are set. HC Mike Stoops is going to have to keep his team’s feet on the ground, or this could be a long, long trip to the Glass Bowl.

Then there are the Rockets, who have a lot of rebuilding to do, especially on offense. This was a unit that recorded 437.9 yards and 29.7 points per game a year ago but wasn’t good enough to make it to a bowl game with just five wins. The problem is that 30 touchdowns left the team from QB Aaron Opelt (16) and RB DaJuane Collins (14). The good news is that QB Austin Dantin is set to take over this offense, which is going to be great for Toledo down the line. However, Dantin is still only a sophomore. He showed signs of brilliance last year, going 79-of-119 for 962 yards with four TDs and four picks. This could be a difficult situation for a relatively new starter, though Dantin was clearly used last year effectively as a frosh. Much like Arizona, the question marks come on defense. Regardless of how many players are back from last year’s team, giving up a whopping 37.7 points per game isn’t going to be acceptable.

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This is a hefty NCAA football spread at 15 points in this game. The Wildcats might be in over their heads in this one with this type of a number, though. Arizona didn’t play that well on the road last year, going just 2-4 ATS, which dropped it to 2-7 ATS in its last nine contests away from the desert. Though it’s true that the Rockets were crushed 41-16 in Arizona two years ago, that doesn’t mean that that will be the case once again. Toledo has the abilities to win this game, though it seems like a feint chance. Look for Dantin to put together a fantastic game, and though it might not ultimately be enough to win outright, sticking within two touchdowns shouldn’t be that difficult, especially in a nationally televised home game in one of the most feared venues in the country.

Selection: Toledo Rockets +15.5

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