Southern Mississippi Golden Eagles at Liberty Flames -10
Libety is 5-0 for the first time since 2008. Their offense has been impressive averaging 34 ppg. The running attack has been carrying the load, averaging 269 yard per game. The difficulty of the Flames is they consistently varry up their looks. They have a four-headed monster Joshua Mack (359 yards 6.1 AVG, 1TD), Shedro Louis (310 yards, 9.4 AVG, 3 TDs), Peyton Pickett (293 yards, 5.0 AVG, 3 TD), quarterback Malik Willis who has a team-best 398 yards and five touchdowns. The run game will be a huge factor against Southern Mississippi, they give up 5.7 yards per attempt this season.
Southern Mississippi has been living through the air. 69% of their offensive plays have come by way of the pass. Liberty is 4th in the nation in stopping the big pass play, holding opposing teams to just 5.5 yards per attempt.
Liberty has not played a great schedule but they have a lot of momentum after stomping Syracuse last week. This is a great matchup for the Flames and they should be able to do whatever they want on offense.
Pick: Liberty Flames -10
Houston Cougars -14 at Navy Midshipmen
Houston got run over by Zach Wilson and BYU last week giving up yards by the plenty. Navy has tons of momentum coming off of a win over East Carolina last week, their third in a row. Navy has seen a carousel at QB but it hasn’t stopped the offensive game plan for Navy. They want to run the ball and that is what they have been doing. They have averaged 191 rush yards per game. They will have Tyger Goslin at QB which means they will continue to pound the run game on Houston looking to control the clock.
Houston has a dynamic offense led by QB Clayton Tune. They were able to go shot for shot with BYU until the 4th quarter. It will be vital for Houston to take advantage of their time with the ball as they will struggle to stop the run game. Houston likely pulls this one out because of Clayton Tune but they will not have an easy go on the road. Houston wins, but 14 is too many points.
Pick: Navy Midshipmen +14
Cincinnati Bearcats +2.5 at SMU Mustangs
SMU is 5-0, featuring one of the most powerful offenses in college football. The Mustangs rank ninth in the nation in scoring (40.9 per game). They have done that against mediocre defenese to say the least. They will now get one of the best defenses in the country coming off of a week off due to Covid-19 issues.
While SMU is unbeaten they have not faced the competition they will face on Saturday. Cincinnati has held teams to just 306 yards per game good for 12th in the nation. SMU’s Shane Buechele has been on fire but he will be without his top target Reggie Roberson. Without Roberson, SMU could have trouble doing the things that they want to do. Their 406 passing yards per game has allowed them to overcome defensive issues. No Roberson will hurt the game plan.
Cincinnati will try to limit the decisions for Ridder by running the ball against the subpar defense of SMU. They give up 170 yards per game on the ground. The Bearcats have been great with 121 carries for 534 yards and 7 touchdowns.
The rested Cincy defense and the run game will be enough to take down SMU on the road. May as well take the points to be safe.
Pick: Cincinnati Bearcats +2.5
Overall Season Picks Record: 4-2