Middle Tennessee State Blue Raiders
(3-4, 2-5 ATS)
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Arkansas State Red Wolves
(3-5, 6-2 ATS)
With the World Series winding down, college football betting action is just starting to heat up! The Middle Tennessee State Blue Raiders will try to get back in the race for the Sun Belt championship when they take on the Arkansas Red Wolves, one of the best ATS teams in the country.
Finally! Last week, the Blue Raiders looked like the team we all expected them to be this year, when they rolled up the Louisiana Monroe Warhawks 38-10. QB Dwight Dasher, who is one of the biggest disappointments of the entire season, got it going with his arm (219 yards, 2 TDs) and his legs (66 yards) to lead the offense to 463 yards and a season high in scoring against FBS opponents. Dasher took over the team lead in passing yards this year with 564 in the victory, but the Blue Raiders are still struggling in that category at just 214.1 passing yards per game, No. 62 in the country. MTSU also cranked up the defensive intensity for the first time in quite some time, as it had its best outing of the year as well on the heels of allowing 42 points to both the Troy Trojans and Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets. This unit ranks No. 67 in the country in total ‘D’ at 372.7 yards per game and No. 72 in scoring at 27.0 points per game. This might be a 3-4 team, but everyone in the Sun Belt is still aiming for the Blue Raiders, as they were one of the favorites to capture the conference crown at the outset of the season.
Arkansas State extended its ATS winning streak to three games with a 37-16 win over the Florida Atlantic Owls last week. The Red Wolves have played an awfully difficult schedule this year against three teams outside of the conference that have proven to be rock solid clubs, the Auburn Tigers, Louisville Cardinals, and Indiana Hoosiers, so perhaps it was expected to have five losses already at this point in the year. It is going to take wins in each of their last three Sun Belt games to have any chance of going bowling, making Tuesday night’s duel all the more important. The offense has been humming in recent weeks, scoring 71 points combined against FAU and Indiana. QB Ryan Aplin has already hit the 2,000 yard mark on the season and should nail down 3,000 by season’s end. Aplin is completing 60.3 percent of his passes with 13 scores against seven picks in a very respectable season. He also has 294 rushing yards and seven TDs on the ground. Look out for WRs Allen Muse, Taylor Stockemer and Dwayne Frampton. Frampton is the possession receiver of the bunch, catching 46 passes for 471 yards on the year, but both Muse and Stockemer are averaging right around 17 yards per reception and can really stretch the field.
For whatever reason, the Blue Raiders continue to draw respect from the oddsmakers. The bottom line this year is that they just aren’t all that good. Expect to see Arky State come out of the blocks with a good performance to put itself in a position to potentially make its first ever bowl game with a ‘W’ to eliminate MTSU from the Sun Belt title race.
College Football Free Pick: Arkansas State Red Wolves -1.5
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