South Florida Bulls
(3-3, 2-4 ATS)
(3-3, 3-3 ATS)
The Big East might not have the sexiest brand of football around, but don’t tell that to the South Florida Bulls and Cincinnati Bearcats. Both teams are going to look to take a major step towards going to a bowl game this year on Friday night in a nationally televised college football betting affair.
The Bulls haven’t scored a touchdown in almost nine full quarters of action, and it’s high time that QB BJ Daniels does enough to get his team a major score. These INTs are really coming back to haunt the sophomore on the season, as he has thrown ten of them this year, nine of which came in the team’s three losses. Daniels is only completing 56.0 percent of his passes for just 803 yards, and he has 190 yards on the ground. All of his averages are down from his freshman year, and he already has more INTs in six games than he did for the massive majority of last season. It’s really hard to complain about the way the defense has played, though the schedule hasn’t been all that tough. The only team to score more than 20 on the Bulls this year has been the Florida Gators, and a good number of those points in the Swamp came from turnovers and special teams. This unit held the great RB Noel Devine to just 29 yards on ten carries last weekend in Morgantown and hasn’t allowed more than two TDs in a game since that UF loss.
The Bearcats are taking small steps right now towards getting back to the form that they were in last season when they ran the table in the regular season. Cincinnati wasn’t dominating, but it did what it had to do to beat the Louisville Cardinals last week on the road as short favorites. That game was also played under the bright lights of Friday Night Football, so we aren’t worried about nerves at all. It’s almost as though that 31-29 loss to the Oklahoma Sooners provided a real kick start to this offense, as all of a sudden, the team has 80 points on the board in the last two weeks. QB Zach Collaros has 17 TD passes this year against just three picks, two of which came in last week’s victory. However, he also had five TD passes and threw for 275 yards, numbers which HC Butch Jones would take 100% of the time. The Bearcat signal caller has averaged at least 7.6 yards per attempt in all of his games this season, and he has had five straight games with at least two TD passes and four straight with at least three.
The only questionable matchup we really see is whether Daniels can really get the Bulls on the board a few times or not. Our guess is that he’ll need to generate at least 20 points to stick within this type of a number, and we tend to believe that he can’t do that even though the Cincy ‘D’ hasn’t really been much to write home about on the season. We’ll run against the Bulls for our Friday night college football free pick.
NCAA Football Free Pick: Cincinnati Bearcats -8.5