Rutgers Scarlet Knights
(4-3, 1-6 ATS)
South Florida Bulls
(4-3, 3-4 ATS)
The wide open Big East might get a few more things sorted out on Wednesday night in a great stand alone contest between the South Florida Bulls and the Rutgers Scarlet Knights.
The Scarlet Knights might have five games left, but finding two wins in that bunch is going to be awfully difficult to achieve bowl eligibility. A two game winning streak went by the boards two weeks ago against the Pitt Panthers at Heinz Field, as a 41-21 beat down really stopped all momentum. Offensively, Rutgers has been an absolute train wreck this year, and this is why it is just 1-6 ATS, the worst mark in the nation. It ranks No. 109 in the nation in total offense at just 299.6 yards per game and is No. 97 in scoring at 21.1 points per game. There isn’t an FBS team on the slate that has allowed even 30 points to the Scarlet Knights this season. There are still only 15 TDs to speak of in seven games for Head Coach Greg Schiano’s men this year. QB Chas Dodd has thrown five of those scores. He is only completing 52.7 percent of his passes for 817 yards with three picks as well, but those are clearly the best numbers for anyone passer on the team. Perhaps Rutgers should return to the offense that has WR Mohamed Sanu taking snaps. Sanu leads the team in rushing with 286 yards on the year, and he also leads in receiving with 33 catches, 341 yards, and two TDs.
The Bulls are searching for wins No. 5 and 6 to get to a bowl game as well, but again, this is going to be quite the difficult task. South Florida has a very similar schedule remaining to that of Rutgers, and its offense is basically struggling just as much. The Bulls only rank No. 95 in the land in total offense at 323.7 yards per game and No. 71 in scoring at 25.9 yards per game. Just like the Scarlet Knights have with Sanu, USF has QB BJ Daniels that can do a little bit of everything. The second year quarterback is having all sorts of problems holding onto the football this year though, as he has tossed ten picks against just ten total scores (four of which have come on the ground). Daniels has thrown for 1,089 yards and rushed for 225 more. The offense woke up last week against the Cincinnati Bearcats in a 38-30 victory on the road, but the last time the Bulls really had a good offensive game at home was in the demolition of lowly Stony Brook to start the season. The defense has been rock solid though, holding all but two teams to 20 points or less on the schedule this year. Unfortunately, the unit is coming off of its worst outing of the year in which it allowed almost 600 yards to Cincinnati.
The Scarlet Knights shut out USF 31-0 last year at home, and it is most certainly payback time. The Bulls will be able to muster their fifth win of the year and inch closer to that elusive bowl game by a comfortable margin. This one won’t be pretty, but the hosts should triumph by double digits.
College Football Free Pick: South Florida Bulls -9.5