Tulsa Golden Hurricane
(4-3, 4-3 ATS)
Notre Dame Fighting Irish
(4-4, 2-4-2 ATS)
Two teams that are badly in need of two more wins to make a bowl game collide in South Bend in NCAA football betting action, as the Tulsa Golden Hurricane lock horns with the Notre Dame Fighting Irish.
The Golden Hurricane might only be 4-3 this year, but the argument could be made that they have one of the best 25 or so teams in the country. This offense is certainly that good, as it ranks No. 28 in the country in passing, No. 12 in rushing, No. 8 overall, and No. 13 in scoring. Any team that puts up a shade under 500 yards per game is going to be one to reckon with. This offense is coming off of a dominating 52-24 performance against the Tulane Green Wave at home, marking the third time in the last four games that Tulsa scored at least 40 points in a game. The offense has had three outbursts this year of at least 48 points as well. The question comes defensive. This Notre Dame offense is one of the best that the Golden Hurricane have run up against this year. The Oklahoma State Cowboys put 65 on the board against these guys back on September 18th, while the next best offense that it has seen, that of the East Carolina Pirates, scored 51. No team in the country has a worse pass defense than Tulsa at 330.1 yards per game allowed.
One would like to think that the Irish would be able to exploit this pass defense, but we aren’t so sure that that’s going to be the case. WR Theo Riddick and TE Kyle Rudolph are out of the lineup, taking away two thirds of the three headed monster that QB Dayne Crist is used to throwing to. The good news is that WR Michael Floyd has been cleared to play and should be in the lineup on Saturday. Floyd is a legitimate NFL receiver playing at the college ranks right now. He has 44 catches, 624 yards, and six TDs on the season, all of which lead the team. Crist has thrown for 2,033 yards and 15 scores against just seven picks. Defensively, there has been a major problem in South Bend as well. The Irish have had to learn three different crazy offenses to defend in as many weeks, and at least so far, they haven’t done well against any of those units. Western Michigan’s pass happy ‘O’ managed 20 points, Navy’s triple option got to 35, and who knows what the best of the bunch, the Tulsa quick fire unit will be able to get done?This is a must win game for Notre Dame if it wants any chance to go bowling, especially with the Utah Utes and USC Trojans still on tap. However, the Golden Hurricane are trying to make a name for themselves, and this would be a great way to do it. This is a lot of points to be giving a good team that had two weeks to prepare for its version of the Super Bowl. Snare the points and know that Tulsa might be good enough to pull the outright upset.
NCAA Football Free Pick: Tulsa Golden Hurricane +8.5