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  1. #16
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    NCAAF

    Monday, December 26


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    St. Petersburg Bowl betting preview: Miami (Ohio) vs Mississippi State
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    Mississippi State’s Nick Fitzgerald led the SEC in total offense with 3,530 yards.

    Miami (Ohio) Redhawks vs Mississippi State Bulldogs (-14, 58.5)

    Two talented sophomore quarterbacks get their first college postseason exposure when Mississippi State takes on Miami (Ohio) in the St. Petersburg Bowl on Dec. 26. Mississippi State’s Nick Fitzgerald led the SEC in total offense with 3,530 yards - 1,243 on the ground - and had a hand in 35 touchdowns - 21 passing and 14 rushing. The RedHawks became a different team when Gus Ragland took over at quarterback in midseason as he won all six games to rescue the team from a 0-6 start, throwing for 15 touchdowns - nine in the last three games - without an interception.

    The Bulldogs make their school-record seventh straight trip to a bowl game despite a 5-7 record, getting added as an eligible team to help fill the enormous bowl schedule because of their academic standing after a 55-20 victory over Ole Miss in the regular season finale. Miami’s remarkable turnaround qualified the RedHawks for their first bowl since the 2010 season when they took down Middle Tennessee 35-21 in the Go.Daddy Bowl. “They are a much different team at the back end of the season than they were at the beginning of the season just based on the confidence they play with,” Mississippi State coach Dan Mullen told reporters. “It is going to be a great challenge for us.”

    Mississippi State’s offense stepped it up in the second half of the season, averaging more than 45 points in the five games that were not against No. 1 Alabama, while Miami improved defensively after giving up an average of almost 30 points during the 0-6 start. The Bulldogs scored 24.8 points per game in the first six of the season and Fitzgerald was key to the revival, rushing for at least 100 yards in five of the six second-half contests - 258 against Ole Miss - while throwing for five touchdowns and no interceptions in the final two games. Sophomore De’Andre Montgomery and junior Heath Harding each have picked off four passes for the RedHawks.

    TV:
    11 a.m. ET, ESPN.

    LINE HISTORY:
    Since opening this bowl as 11.5-point favorites, Mississippi has been bet all the way to two-touchdown faves. The total hit the board at 58 and that's where the number currently sits. View the complete line history here.

    WEATHER REPORT:
    Dome.

    INJURY REPORT:


    Miami (Ohio) - QB Billy Bahl (questionable, shoulder), DL Zach Smierciak (questionable, personal), OL Jordan Rigg (questionable, undisclosed), OL Collin Buchanan (questionable, undisclosed), OL Danny Godlevske (questionable, undisclosed), OL Matt Skibinski (questionable, undisclosed), TE Nate Becker (out for season, undisclosed), OL Zach Hovey (out for season, undisclosed)

    Mississippi State - DB John Hankerson (out indefinitely, suspension)

    ABOUT MIAMI (6-6 SU, 8-4 SU, 4-8 OU):
    The Redhawks are the first team in NCAA history to start the season 0-6 before winning six straight and averaged almost 30 points during the streak to do it while limiting four of six opponents to 20 or fewer. Ragland completed 62.4 percent of his passes and also rushed for two scores while sophomores Alonzo Smith and Kenny Young combined for 1,179 yards to go along with five touchdowns on the ground. Sophomore James Gardner (40 catches, 658 yards, five TDs), junior Jared Murphy (42, 532, five) and senior Rokeem Williams (22, 463, three) give Ragland three dangerous options in the air.

    ABOUT MISSISSIPPI STATE (5-7 SU, 5-7 ATS, 7-5 OU):
    Senior Fred Ross is Fitzgerald’s top target with 68 receptions for 873 yards and 12 touchdowns while junior Donald Gray has also contributed with 39 catches and 691 yards to go along with five scores. Fitzgerald logged 52 more carries than anyone else on the team, but sophomore Aeris Williams is quite capable after accumulating 656 yards and four touchdowns on the ground. The Bulldogs often struggled on defense (110th in the nation in yards allowed per game), but senior linebacker Richie Brown (93 tackles) and senior lineman Johnathan Calvin (seven sacks) had their moments.

    TRENDS:


    * Redhawks are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games overall.
    * Bulldogs are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games following a ATS win.
    * Under is 4-1 in Redhawks last 5 neutral site games.
    * Over is 6-0 in Bulldogs last 6 games overall.

    CONSENSUS:
    The public is siding with the favorite in this bowl game, with 66 percent of bettors on Mississippi State. As for the total, 58 percent of wagers are backing the Over.


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  2. #17
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    NCAAF

    Monday, December 26


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    Quick Lane Bowl betting preview: Maryland vs Boston College
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    Junior defensive end Harold Landry leads the way for Boston College's defense, leading the FBS with 15 sacks and ranking third with 20.5 tackles for loss.

    Maryland Terrapins vs Boston College Eagles (+2, 43.5)

    Former ACC foes Maryland and Boston College both rebounded from three-win campaigns a season ago and look to finish on a winning note when they tangle in the Quick Lane Bowl in Detroit the day after Christmas. The Terrapins, in head coach D.J. Durkin's first year, are seeking their first bowl win since 2010, while the Eagles are looking to snap a five-game bowl losing streak that dates back to 2008. Durkin's squad had a four-game slide down the stretch in which it was outscored 191-49 before defeating Rutgers in the last game of the regular season to gain bowl eligibility, while Boston College won its final two contests to reach a bowl game for the third time in four years under coach Steve Addazio.

    The game could be decided in the battle between Maryland's running game and Boston College's stout rush defense, which is ranked seventh in the country. The Terrapins have four players with more than 100 rushing yards and at least 6.0 yards per carry, and leader Ty Johnson (845 yards, four touchdowns) is second nationally with 8.9 per attempt after picking up 168 yards on 11 carries in the win over Rutgers. Freshman Lorenzo Harrison piled up 7.2 per carry and led the way with five rushing TDs, but his status is in doubt after a late-season suspension.

    Durkin and Addazio were on the same staff at Florida in 2010 and the latter was singing the praises of Maryland's first-year leader. "When he came to Florida, we wanted him so desperately to come and I was the interim head coach at that time," Addazio told reporters. "He had worked with Urban Meyer in the past and had a chance to be around D.J., his passion, his energy, so his career path hasn't surprised me in the least. I always said to myself, this is a guy that's going to be destined to be a great head football coach." Durkin, who was in charge of special teams and linebackers while working alongside Addazio that year, expressed similar sentiments. "A lot of our program, what we do and what is based on is right in line with Steve and to be honest with you, the things I learned from Steve," Durkin told the media. "I can't say enough. I said earlier, Steve's a guy I look up to in the profession."

    TV:
    2:30 p.m. ET, ESPN.

    LINE HISTORY:
    Oddsmakers opened this bowl game with Boston College as slight 1-point favorites, but the line has jumped the fence to Maryland -2. The total hit the board at 44.5 and has been bet down to 43.5. View the complete line history here.

    WEATHER REPORT:
    Dome

    INJURY REPORT:


    Maryland - QB Caleb Rowe (questionable, undisclosed), OL Mike Dunn (questionable, undisclosed), WR Taivon Jacobs (doubtful, undisclosed)

    Boston College - No injuries to report

    ABOUT MARYLAND (6-6 SU, 4-8 ATS, 4-8 OU):
    Perhaps a full month off between games will help senior quarterback Perry Hills recover from persistent shoulder issues that caused him to miss two games and leave four others early this season. Hills completed 66 percent of his passes and had 10 TDs against three interceptions when in there, helping the Terrapins to a 5-1 record in games he was able to start and finish. "We think he’s been a really good player for us this year when he's been healthy," Durkin said of Hills. "We've had some ups and downs based on his health. He was back for us the last game of the year. He's back healthy now."

    ABOUT BOSTON COLLEGE (6-6 SU, 5-6-1 ATS, 4-8 OU):
    Junior defensive end Harold Landry leads the way for Addazio's defense and is up for many postseason honors after tying for the FBS lead with 15 sacks and ranking third with 20.5 tackles for loss. The nation's 127th-ranked offense did just enough in the two-game winning streak to end the regular season, as senior quarterback Patrick Towles threw for 257 yards and two TDs with no interceptions. He is one of four players with at least 200 rushing yards but the Eagles - who own an 8-3 all-time series advantage - average just 3.4 yards per attempt, 117th in the country.

    TRENDS:


    * Terrapins are 3-15 ATS in their last 18 games following a straight up win.
    * Eagles are 5-1-1 ATS in their last 7 non-conference games.
    * Under is 4-0-1 in Terrapins last 5 non-conference games.
    * Under is 5-1 in Eagles last 6 vs. Big Ten.
    * Underdog is 4-1 ATS in their last 5 meetings.

    CONSENSUS:
    Bettors are backing Maryland in this bowl game, with 48 percent of wagers on the Terrapins. When it comes to the total, 53 percent of wagers are on the Under.


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  3. #18
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    NCAAF

    Monday, December 26


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    Camping World Independence Bowl betting preview: North Carolina State vs Vanderbilt
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    Wolfpack senior running back Matthew Dayes was a second-team All-ACC selection after running for 1,119 yards.

    North Carolina State Wolfpack vs Vanderbilt Commodores (+5.5, 45)

    Vanderbilt needed to win one of its final two games to become bowl eligible and got both, earning themselves a date with North Carolina State at the Independence Bowl in Shreveport, La., on Dec. 26. The Wolfpack needed an unlikely finish as well and ended up knocking off rival North Carolina in the regular-season finale to earn its third straight bowl appearance. The Commodores are returning to postseason play after a two-year bowl absence.

    Vanderbilt made three straight bowl appearances under former coach James Franklin, including a 38-24 triumph over N.C. State in the 2012 Music City Bowl, but is going for the first time since Derek Mason took over the program. Mason was in danger of missing out on a bowl for the third straight season until engineering a 4-2 finish that included wins over Georgia, Ole Miss and Tennessee. The Commodores put up two of their three highest point totals of the season in the final two contests and piled up 608 yards in the 45-34 win over the Volunteers in the regular-season finale.

    The Wolfpack looked as though they would miss out on bowl season during a four-game slide in the middle of conference play, but tight losses to ACC powers Clemson and Florida State showed glimpses of what N.C. State could become. The 28-21 upset win at North Carolina in the finale not only made the Wolfpack bowl eligible, but it likely saved coach Dave Dorean's job. "We remain committed to becoming a Top 25 program and Dave shares that vision," N.C. State athletic director Debbie Yow said in a statement after the win over the Tar Heels.

    TV:
    5 p.m. ET, ESPN 2.

    LINE HISTORY:
    North Carolina State opened this game favored by a field goal, but they have since been bet up to -5.5. The total hit the board at 44 and has been bet up a single point to sit at the current number of 45. View the complete line history here.

    WEATHER REPORT:
    It could get messy at the Independence Bowl with an 86 percent chance of rain around kickoff and a chance of thunderstorms in the area. Temperatures will be in the high 60's for the game.

    INJURY REPORT:


    North Carolina State - QB Ryan Finley (probable, head), DE James Smith-Williams (questionable, undisclosed), TE Cole Cook (questionable, undisclosed)

    Vanderbilt - G Delando Crooks (questionable, undisclosed), LB Nigel Bowden (questionable, undisclosed)

    ABOUT VANDERBILT (6-6 SU, 8-4 ATS, 4-7-1 OU):
    The Commodores averaged 13.2 points in going 1-5 in the first six SEC games but totaled 83 points in the final two games as junior running back Ralph Webb piled up 237 yards and five touchdowns on 41 carries. Quarterback Kyle Shurmur threw for a career-high 416 yards in the win over Tennessee and threw four TD passes in the last two games - marking the only two times this season that he threw for multiple TDs in a game. Vanderbilt already had a bowl berth sewn up thanks to its strong Academic Progress Rate before the finale but wanted to make a statement that it belonged in the postseason with a win.

    ABOUT N.C. STATE (6-6 SU, 7-5 ATS, 5-6-1 OU):
    Wolfpack senior running back Matthew Dayes was a second-team All-ACC selection after running for 1,119 yards and saved his best for last with six touchdowns in the final three games of the regular season. Dayes was fortunate to be running behind a fellow All-ACC second-teamer in guard Tony Adams, and tight end Jaylen Samuels made it as a third-team selection after leading N.C. State with 49 receptions. The defense is led by defensive end Bradley Chubb, who led the nation with 21 tackles for loss.

    TRENDS:


    * Wolfpack are 10-2 ATS in their last 12 non-conference games.
    * Commodores are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games after scoring more than 40 points in their previous game.
    * Under is 5-0 in Wolfpack last 5 games overall.
    * Under is 9-2-2 in Commodores last 13 games following a ATS win.


    CONSENSUS:
    The public fairly split in this matchup, with 52 percent of bettors backing North Carolina State. As for the total, 58 percent of wagers on the Over.


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  4. #19
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    NCAAF

    Tuesday, December 27


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    Zaxby's Heart of Dallas Bowl Betting Preview: Army vs. North Texas
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    Sophomore running back Andy Davidson leads Army with 178 carries for 905 yards and 11 touchdowns.

    Army Black Knights vs. North Texas Mean Green (+11.5, 48.5)

    Game to be played at Cotton Bowl Stadium, Dallas, Texas

    This year's Heart of Dallas Bowl on Dec. 27 at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas will feature a rematch between two teams that played in the regular season -- Army and North Texas. The visiting Mean Green defeated Army 35-18 on Oct. 22, handing the Black Knights their first home loss of the season. How well Army can slow down running back Jeffrey Wilson, who went for 160 yards and three touchdowns in the first matchup, will be a key to this game.

    The Mean Green didn’t exactly take the regular route to a bowl game, dropping four of their last five to finish under .500. North Texas is only in a bowl because there weren’t enough 6-6 teams to fill all the available spots, allowing a handful of five-win squads into the party. Selections were based on academic progress rate scores, and the Mean Green ranked second among teams not bowl eligible, giving North Texas its ninth bowl game in school history.

    Army is back in a bowl game for the first time since 2010, thanks in large part to the play of quarterback Ahmad Bradshaw. The dual-threat junior signal caller finished second on the team in rushing with 695 yards and paced the passing game with 650 yards, accounting for 11 touchdowns either on the ground or in the air. The Black Knights aren’t going to pass much in any game, but after throwing four interceptions in the loss to North Texas earlier this season, Bradshaw will need to be especially choosy about his aerial attempts in this contest.

    TV:
    Noon ET, Dec. 27, ESPN.

    LINE HISTORY:
    North Texas opened this game as 8.5-point underdogs and despite playing this game in its home state, they've been faded to +11.5. The total opened at 49 and has been bet down to 49.5. Check out the complete line history here.

    WEATHER REPORT:
    The forecast is calling for partly cloudy skies in Dallas, with temperatures in the mid 50's for the game.

    INJURY REPORT:


    Army - No injuries to report.

    North Texas - RB J. Wilson (probable Tuesday, knee), OL G. Gunter (questionable Tuesday, undisclosed), WR R. Bussey Jr. (quesitonable Tuesday, undisclosed), OL E. Woodworth (questionable Tuesday, undisclosed), QB M. Fine (out Tuesday, shoulder), RB W. Ivery (out Tuesday, academics).

    ABOUT ARMY (7-5, 7-5 ATS, 4-8 O/U):
    The constant to the Army ground attack has been sophomore running back Andy Davidson, who leads the team with 178 carries for 905 yards and 11 touchdowns. Still, in the loss to North Texas he ran the ball just 16 times for 70 yards and no scores, and averaged 78.7 yards in the team's five losses -- missing one completely with injury. The Black Knights are able to attack on the ground with a number of different players, but if Davidson isn't having his usual success the Army offense can get slowed down.

    ABOUT NORTH TEXAS (5-7, 6-5-1 ATS, 5-7 O/U):
    If the Mean Green are going to repeat their win over Army from earlier this year, the defense must improve. In the five games since holding the Black Knights to 18 points -- the fewest by a North Texas opponent this year -- the Mean Green have allowed an average of 39.2 points while going 1-4. North Texas forced seven turnovers against Army but managed just six since, meaning the team's leading tackler defensive back Kishawn McClain (86 tackles) and the rest of the defense need to be more opportunistic in their season finale.

    TRENDS:


    * Army is 6-1 ATS in its last seven games in December.
    * North Texas is 1-4 ATS in its last five games overall.
    * Under is 15-2 in Army's last 17 neutral site games.
    * Under is 8-3 in North Texas' last 11 games following a straight up loss.

    CONSENSUS:
    Fifty-eight percent of the public is backing Army, while 55 percent of the wagers are on the Over.


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  5. #20
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    NCAAF

    Tuesday, December 27


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    Military Bowl Betting Preview: Temple vs. Wake Forest
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    Temple was the best bet in the nation in college football this season, going 12-1 ATS.

    Temple Owls at Wake Forest Demon Deacons (+12, 41)

    Game to be played at Navy Marine Corps Memorial Stadium, Annapolis, Maryland

    Interim coach Ed Foley leads American Athletic Conference champion Temple into action in the Military Bowl on Dec. 27 against Wake Forest at the Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in Annapolis, Md. Foley took over after Rhule left to become coach at Baylor following the Owls' 34-10 victory over Navy in the AAC championship game Dec. 3. Foley has been with Temple since 2008 and served in several capacities, including special teams and tight ends coach this season.

    Under Rhule's guidance, the Owls won 20 out of their last 27 games including the last seven, and take on a Wake Forest team that has lost six of its last eight games under coach Dave Clawson. The Owls are led by a pair of dynamic seniors from Elizabeth, N.J., in quarterback Phillip Walker and running back Jahad Thomas, who helped orchestrate a remarkable turnaround from 2-10 in 2013 to 10-3 this season. Walker has thrown for more than 10,000 yards and 72 touchdowns as a four-year starter while Thomas is poised for his second straight 1,000-yard season, needing 82 yards against Wake Forest to reach the milestone.

    Wake Forest opened the season with four straight wins and was 5-1 after a victory over Syracuse, but faltered when matched up with some of the ACC's best. The Demon Deacons will likely need to put forth one of their best defensive efforts of the season to win this game as they lack the offensive firepower to match the Owls, who have close to a two touchdown advantage in points scored per game. Clawson's team will run the ball with the likes of quarterback John Wolford and running backs Matt Colburn and Cade Carney while picking their spots in the passing game, which has yielded seven touchdowns this season.

    TV:
    3:30 p.m. ET, ESPN.

    LINE HISTORY:
    Temple opened has 13.5-point favorites and were faded to as low as -11.5, but have bounced back to the current number of -12. The total opened at 41 and ahs yet to move off that number. Check out the complete line history here.

    WEATHER REPORT:
    A shower or two possible is early with partly cloudy skies in the afternoon. The expected high is 62F. Winds gusting out of the west at 10 to 15 mph. There will be a 30 percent chance of rain.

    INJURY REPORT:


    Temple - DB K. Lucas (questionable Tuesday, undisclosed), DB J. Thomas (questionable Tuesday, undisclosed), DB N. Smith (questionable Tuesday, leg).

    Wake Forest - DB R. Janvion (probable Tuesday, toe), QB J. Wolford (probable Tuesday, shoulder), RB I. Robinson (questionable Tuesday, leg), DB A. Austin (questionable Tuesday, hand), DB (out Tuesday, shoulder).

    ABOUT TEMPLE (10-3, 12-1 ATS, 5-8 O/U):
    After struggling a bit on defense during the middle of the season, the Owls were solid over the season's final month, limiting five opponents to a total of 33 points. Two more seniors from New Jersey - Haason Reddick and Praise Martin-Oguike - have been disruptive along the defensive line, totaling 31.5 tackles for loss, 17 sacks and six forced fumbles. Stephaun Marshall and Delvon Randall are the top tacklers for a unit that has surrendered only one rushing and three passing touchdowns over the past five games.

    ABOUT WAKE FOREST (6-6, 7-5 ATS, 5-7 O/U):
    The Demon Deacons have several difference-makers on defense in junior lineman Duke Ejiofor, senior linebacker Marquel Lee and freshman safety Jessie Bates III. Ejiofor and Lee combined for 34 tackles for loss and 17.5 sacks while Bates is second on the team in tackles to Lee and first in interceptions. Bates, who led all FBS freshmen in interceptions, interception return yards and interceptions returned for touchdowns, was named to the USA Today Freshman All-America Team.

    TRENDS:


    * Temple is 12-0 ATS in the last 12 games overall.
    * Wake Forest is 5-0 ATS in their last five games following a ATS loss.
    * Under is 5-0 in Temple's last five games overall.
    * Under is 5-2 in Demon Deacons last seven games overall.

    CONSENSUS:
    Fifty-eight percent of wagers are backing Temple to cover its 13th consecutive game. As for the total, 62 percent of wagers are on the Over.


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  6. #21
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    NCAAF

    Tuesday, December 27


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    Holiday Bowl Betting Preview: Minnesota vs. Washington State
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    Luke Falk has completed 71 percent of his passes for 4,204 yards and 37 touchdowns against 10 interceptions this season.

    Minnesota Golden Gophers vs. Washington State Cougars (-10, 61)

    Game to be played at Qualcomm Stadium, San Diego, California

    After watching its Rose Bowl hopes fade with two late losses, Washington State looks to end the season on a winning note as the Cougars face Minnesota in the National Funding Holiday Bowl in San Diego on Dec. 27. Washington State bounced back from two early losses to contend in the Pac-12 before closing with back-to-back losses to Colorado and rival Washington, while Minnesota will play in a bowl game for a program record-tying fifth straight season. The Gophers will be hard-pressed to slow down the Cougars’ Air Raid attack, which led the Pac-12 and placed second nationally at 370.8 passing yards per game.

    It will be even tougher for the Gophers to slow Washington State's passing attack after it was announced Tuesday that 10 Minnesota players were suspended from the Holiday Bowl stemming from an incident in an off-campus apartment Sept. 2. Among those who will not play are starting defensive backs KiAnte Hardin - a sophomore - and freshman Antoine Winfield Jr., along with secondary reserves in freshman Ray Buford and sophomore Antonio Shenault. Hardin recorded two interceptions, six passes defended and a fumble recovery while Winfield had a pick, four passes defended and two fumble recoveries.

    Washington State junior quarterback Luke Falk has completed 71 percent of his passes for 4,204 yards and 37 touchdowns against 10 interceptions, and he’s been helped this season by a surprising running game led by the trio of Jamal Morrow, James Williams and Gerard Wicks. In order to keep Falk and the Cougars’ explosive offense off the field, Minnesota will need to control the clock behind sophomore Rodney Smith, who finished fourth in the Big Ten with 1,084 rushing yards and scored 16 touchdowns. Senior quarterback Mitch Leidner added 10 rushing touchdowns but threw 12 interceptions.

    TV:
    7 p.m. ET, ESPN.

    LINE HISTORY:
    Oddsmakers pegged Washington State as 5.5-point favorites, but they have since moved all the way to -10. The total opened at 60 and have been bet up to 61. Check out the complete line history here.

    WEATHER REPORT:
    It should be a beautiful night for football in San Diego, with the forecast calling for clear skies and temperatures in the low 60's.

    INJURY REPORT:


    Minnesota - DB A. Starks (questionable Tuesday, undisclosed), OL J. Weyler (questionable Tuesday, tricep).

    Washington State - LB I. Dotson (questionable Tuesday, undisclosed).

    ABOUT MINNESOTA (8-4, 4-5-3 ATS, 6-6 O/U):
    While first-year coach Tracy Claeys failed to record any marquee victories, the Gophers avoided any major missteps and nearly won at Penn State in early October before falling 29-26 in overtime. Leidner has completed 56.4 percent of his passes for 2,040 yards and seven touchdowns, including five to Southern California native Drew Wolitarsky, who has caught 61 passes for 787 yards. The Gophers ranked 13th in the Big 10 in pass defense but linemen Steven Richardson and Blake Cashman combined for 13.5 sacks and could help disrupt Falk’s rhythm.

    ABOUT WASHINGTON STATE (8-4, 6-6 ATS, 7-4-1 O/U):
    Falk is without injured starting wide receiver River Cracraft but still has a pair of potent deep threats in Gabe Marks and Tavares Martin Jr., who combined for 146 catches, 1,575 yards and 20 touchdowns. Left guard Cody O'Connell was named a first team All-American while safety Shalom Luani joined Marks as an All-Pac-12 first team selection after recording four interceptions along with 58 tackles, including 8.5 for loss. The Cougars’ underrated defense includes linebacker Peyton Pelluer, who had a team-high 89 tackles and will play a key role in slowing down the Gophers’ running game.

    TRENDS:


    * Minnesota is 1-5 ATS in their last six vs. Pac-12 opponents.
    * Washington State is 6-1 ATS in their last seven games following a straight up loss.
    * Under is 4-0 in Minnesota's last four games following a straight up loss.
    * Under is 4-0-1 in Washington State's last five games following a straight up loss.

    CONSENSUS:
    The public is backing Washington State in this matchup, with 66 percent of wagers on the Cougars. As for the total, 65 percent of the wagers are on the Over.


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  7. #22
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    NCAAF

    Tuesday, December 27


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    Cactus Bowl Betting Preview: Boise State vs. Baylor
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    Junior running back Jeremy McNichols leads the Boise State offense, rushing for 1,663 yards and 23 touchdowns.

    Boise State Broncos vs. Baylor Bears (+7.5, 67)

    Game to be played at Chase Field, Phoenix, Arizona

    Baylor will try to end the up-and-down Jim Grobe coaching era on a high note when it faces Boise State in the Motel 6 Cactus Bowl on Dec. 27 at Chase Field in Phoenix, home of the Arizona Diamondbacks. Grobe took over on an interim basis when Art Briles was fired on May 26 amid the school's sexual assault scandal and led the team to a 6-0 start, but the Bears, who hired Temple's Matt Rhule to become permanent head coach last week, limp into the contest with a six-game losing streak. "I'm very excited for our players to have an opportunity to play in the Cactus Bowl against a great football team in Boise State," Grobe told reporters. "I think our guys are looking forward to coaching these kids and getting them ready for a bowl game. So I feel good about playing in a bowl game. This is going to be it for me, so I'd like to win it for sure."

    Playing a Big 12 opponent in the Phoenix area brings back some fond memories for Boise State football fans. The last time the Broncos played a Big 12 opponent in a bowl game was the 2007 Fiesta Bowl against Adrian Peterson-led Oklahoma when Boise State pulled out a memorable 43-42 overtime upset victory. That contest is famous for a 50-yard hook and ladder touchdown play by the Broncos on 4th-and-18 with 18 seconds to go to force overtime, and then Boise State won it with a Statue of Liberty two-point conversion by running back Ian Johnson who then proposed a few minutes later to his girlfriend in the middle of his nationally-televised postgame interview.

    This will be the second time Baylor will play a bowl game in the Phoenix area in the last four seasons. After winning the 2013 Big 12 championship, the Bears were upset by Central Florida 52-42 in the Fiesta Bowl. "I like Arizona a lot," senior linebacker Aiavion Edwards told the Waco Tribune. "We had a good time the last time we were there, and we're looking forward to finishing the game off better than last time."

    TV:
    10:15 p.m. ET, ESPN.

    LINE HISTORY:
    Boise State opened this bowl favored by 10-points, but they've since been faded to the current number of -7.5. The total hit the board at 66.5 and has been bet up slightly to 67. Check out the complete line history here.

    WEATHER REPORT:
    If the roof is open at Chase Field, it should be a nice night in Phoenix with clear skies and temperatures in the mid 50's for the game.

    INJURY REPORT:


    Boise State - S D. Sumner-Gardner (doubtful Tuesday, shoulder).

    Baylor - RB T. Williams (probable Tuesday, knee), S D. Hall (questionable Tuesday, concussion), WR P. Stricklin (questionable Tuesday, leg), DE X. Jones (questionable Tuesday, ankle), RB S. Linwood (out Tuesday, personal).

    ABOUT BOISE STATE (10-2, 3-9 ATS, 5-7 O/U):
    After losing to Air Force for the third consecutive year and failing to make it into the conference championship for the second straight season, the Broncos are looking at a potential bowl win over a Big 12 team as something to build on. "We're trying to finish this season the right way and take everything we've learned and apply it," coach Bryan Harsin told reporters. "And go out there and be a much better football team than we were in the last game." Junior running back Jeremy McNichols (1,663 yards and 23 touchdowns rushing), sophomore quarterback Brett Rypien (3,341 yards, 23 TDs passing), and wide receivers Thomas Sperbeck (72 catches, 1,193 yards, nine touchdowns) along with Cedrick Wilson (50, 1,041, 10) lead an offense that averaged 35.6 points and 479.8 yards per game.

    ABOUT BAYLOR (6-6, 3-9 ATS, 4-8 O/U):
    The Bears have the fifth-ranked offense nationally, averaging 523.3 yards - including 250.3 yards rushing. However, most of that was accomplished with Seth Russell (152-of-278, 2,126 yards, 20 TD passes) at quarterback and the senior won't play after breaking his left ankle in a 45-24 loss at Oklahoma on Nov. 12. Freshman Zach Smith started the final three games at quarterback and threw eight touchdown passes compared to six interceptions over that span so look for the Bears to lean heavily on a running game led by sophomore Terence Williams (945 yards, 11 TDs, 5.9 per carry) and senior Shock Linwood (751, two, 5.4).

    TRENDS:


    * Boise State is 1-6 ATS in its last seven games overall.
    * Baylor is 1-5 ATS in its last six games overall.
    * Over is 4-1 in Boise State's last five bowl games.
    * Over is 4-1 in Baylor's last five games overall.

    CONSENSUS:
    The public is backing Boise State with 56 percent of the wagers, while 63 percent of the betting public is on the Over.


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  8. #23
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    NCAAF

    Wednesday, December 28


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    New Era Pinstripe Bowl Betting Preview: Pittsburgh vs. Northwestern
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    James Connor leads a Panthers offense that has gone Over the total in 11 consecutive games.

    Pittsburgh Panthers vs. Northwestern Wildcats (+4.5, 64.5)

    Game to be played at Yankee Stadium, Bronx, New York

    After playing in the highest-scoring game in FBS history, No. 23 Pittsburgh will look to light up the scoreboard again when it faces Northwestern in the New Era Pinstripe Bowl played at Yankee Stadium in New York City on Dec. 28. The Panthers averaged 10.9 yards per play in piling up 11 touchdowns in a 76-61 win over Syracuse in the regular-season finale Nov. 26 - the most points scored by a Pitt team since beating Temple 76-0 in 1977. Offensive coordinator Matt Canada, the mastermind of the offense which enters the contest ranked 10th in the country in scoring (42.3 points per game), will join LSU in the same position right after the bowl game to resurrect a dormant Tigers offense.

    The Northwestern defense will provide Pitt a stiff challenge, ranking 23rd in FBS in points allowed (22.1 per game) despite yielding 402 yards per game. On the other side of the ball, Wildcats sophomore quarterback Clayton Thorson (2,968 yards, 21 TDs, 8 INTs) will try to take advantage of a Panthers defense that ranks 127th in passing yards allowed (343.1 per game). His primary target will be former walk-on Austin Carr, a first team All-Conference pick who caught 23 passes his first three seasons but led the Big Ten in receptions (84), yards (1,196) and receiving touchdowns (12) as a senior in 2016.

    Pitt, which is playing in its ninth consecutive bowl, finished the season on a three-game winning streak for the first time since 2004 and had the distinction of being the only team to beat two Power-5 conference champions (42-39 over Penn State of the Big Ten; 43-42 over Clemson of the ACC). The Wildcats became bowl-eligible for the seventh time in the last nine seasons with a 42-21 triumph over Illinois on Nov. 26 behind 173 yards rushing and three touchdowns by Justin Jackson. The junior (Big Ten-leading 1,300 yards, 12 TDs) won’t be the only elite running back in the game, as Pitt’s James Conner ran for 1,060 yards and scored 20 touchdowns after sitting out all but one game in 2015 with a torn ACL and a bout of lymphoma.

    LINE HISTORY:
    Pittsburgh opened this ACC-Big Ten showdown as 4-point favorites and were bet as high as -5.5, before settling back down at the current number of -4.5. The total hit the board at 66.5 and has been bet down 2-points to the current number of 64.5. Check out the complete line history here.

    WEATHER REPORT:
    It will be a clear and cool day at Yankee Stadium, with temperatures in the low 40's for the bowl game. Winds will be gusting from approximately 15-20 miles per hour across the field out of the northwest.

    INJURY REPORT:


    Pittsburgh - DB P. Motley (probable Wednesday, knee), DB A. Maddox (probable Wednesday, undisclosed), WR Z. Challingsworth (questionable Wednesday, shoulder), WR T. Tripton (questionable Wednesday, upper body), DB J. Whitehead (questionable Wednesday, arm), DL A. Watts (questionable Wednesday, undisclosed), RB C. Moss (questionable Wednesday, undisclosed), DL T. Jarrett (questionable Wednesday, leg).

    Northwestern - RB W. Long (questionable Wednesday, hand).

    ABOUT NORTHWESTERN (6-6, 7-5 ATS, 4-8 O/U):
    Jackson, a first team All-Big Ten running back, posted his third consecutive 1,000-yard campaign and has 3,905 career yards rushing, 27 rushing TDs and a 4.7 per carry average. Thorson, who had seven TD passes and nine interceptions as a full-time starter his freshman season, was completing just 53 percent of his passes with five TDs and four picks during the Wildcats’ 1-3 start in 2016, but the sophomore finished by completing 60 percent of his tosses with 18 TDs against just four interceptions in the final eight games. On the defensive side of the ball, first team all-conference defensive end Ifeadi Odenigbo tied for the league lead with 10 sacks while junior linebacker Anthony Walker, Jr. had 98 tackles but is averaging 9.4 tackles per game over his last eight.

    ABOUT PITTSBURGH (8-4, 5-7 ATS, 11-1 O/U):
    Conner (ACC all-time leader with 56 touchdowns), a first-team all-conference performer, was given the Brian Piccolo Award for the “most courageous” football player in the ACC. Senior quarterback Nathan Peterman (59.7 percent completions, 2,602 yards, 26 TDs, 6 INT) threw 12 touchdowns against two interceptions in season-ending victories over Clemson, Duke and Syracuse and completed the season with a passer rating of 161.2 - tops in the ACC and ninth nationally. The Panthers pass defense is suspect, but one standout has been first-team all-conference defensive end Ejaun Price, who ranks second nationally in tackles for loss (1.8 per game) and fifth in sacks (1.0) with half of his 42 tackles this season being behind the line of scrimmage.

    TRENDS:


    * Pittsburgh is 0-6 ATS in its last six non-conference games.
    * Northwestern is 5-0 ATS in its last five versus ACC opponents.
    * Over is 11-0 in Pittsburgh's last 11 games overall.
    * Under is 4-0 in Northwestern's last four games following an ATS win.

    CONSENSUS:
    Bettors are backing the Panthers in this battle of cats, with 64 percent of wagers on Pittsburgh to cover. As for the total, 54 percent of wagers are on the Over.


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  9. #24
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    NCAAF

    Wednesday, December 28


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    Russell Athletic Bowl Betting Preview: West Virginia vs. Miami
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    The Mountaineers rank No. 12 in FBS in total offense (506.9 yards per game) with a balanced attack.

    West Virginia Mountaineers vs. Miami Hurricanes (-2.5, 57.5)

    Game to be played at Camping World Stadium, Orlando, Florida

    West Virginia attempts to clinch its first 11-win season since 2007 and Miami (Fla.) tries to finish its first season under Mark Richt with a five-game winning streak when the former Big East foes meet in the Russell Athletic Bowl on Dec. 28 in Orlando, Fla. The No. 12 Mountaineers rebounded from their mistake-filled 56-28 loss to Oklahoma with victories against Iowa State and Baylor to finish an impressive 7-2 in the Big 12. The Hurricanes recovered from a mid-season four-game losing streak that included a pair of agonizing losses to Florida State and Notre Dame by outscoring their final four ACC foes 152-76 to save a season that appeared to be slipping away.

    Bowl games are often decided by which team is more motivated, but in this case both squads should be excited to get on the field at Camping World Stadium. Miami hasn't won a bowl game in a decade and is looking to build momentum for the future as it attempts to regain its past glory under Richt, a former Hurricanes quarterback. The Mountaineers' outstanding regular season has already resulted in coach Dana Holgorsen being given a five-year contract extension, and they have the opportunity to possibly finish ranked in the top 10 while avoiding finishing the season on a sour note.

    Perhaps the most interesting battle will be between West Virginia's physical offensive line, anchored by All-American center Tyler Orlosky, and Miami's freshman-led front seven that keyed a defense that allowed only 18.9 points per game. The offensive talents mirror one another with Miami junior quarterback Brad Kaaya, who could be headed to the NFL after this game, and West Virginia senior Skyler Howard having similar numbers while both teams have a 1,000-yard rusher in Miami's Mark Walton and West Virginia's Justin Crawford. If it comes down to the kicking game, Miami appears to have an edge with Michael Badgley (10-of-11 on field goals of 40 or more yards) and Justin Vogel (44.2 yards on 57 punts, 23 punts inside the 20 and one touchback) having performed better than Mike Molina (2-of-5 from 40 yards or more) and Billy Kinney (41.4 yards on 51 punts, 14 inside the 20, five touchbacks).

    TV:
    5:30 p.m. ET, ESPN.

    LINE HISTORY:
    Oddsmakers opened Miami as field goal faves for this bowl game, but they have since been bet down a half-point to the current number of Miami -2.5. The opened at 56 and has been bet up to to 57.5, where it currently sits. Check out the complete line history here.

    WEATHER REPORT:
    It should be a beautiful evening for football in Orlando, with clear skies and temperaturs in the mid 70's being called for in the forecast.

    INJURY REPORT:


    West Virginia - DL X. Pegues (questionable Wednesday, shoulder), CB A. Crawfor (questionable Wednesday, undisclosed), S K. White (questionable Wednesday, hand).

    Miami - DB - A Colbert (probable Wednesday, forearm), QB T. Beirne (questionable Wednesday, personal), DL S. Patchan (questionable Wednesday, knee).

    ABOUT WEST VIRGINIA (10-2, 5-7 ATS, 5-7 O/U):
    The Mountaineers rank No. 12 in FBS in total offense (506.9 yards per game) with a balanced attack behind Howard (3,194 yards passing, 60.8 percent, 26 touchdown passes) and a backfield led by Crawford (1,168 yards, 7.4 yards per carry, four TDs) that had four different players rush for more than 100 yards in a game. Howard, who is also a running threat, has a trio of dangerous receivers in Daikiel Shorts Jr. (58 receptions, 833 yards), Ka'Raun White (48, 583) and game-breaking Shelton Gibson (40, 927, 23.2 yards per reception). All-American senior cornerback Rasul Douglas, who had eight of the team's 14 interceptions, is the leader of a unit that ranked No. 3 in total defense (but only No. 79 in FBS) in the offensive-minded Big 12 (431.2 yards per game).

    ABOUT MIAMI (8-4, 8-4 ATS, 6-6 O/U):
    Kaaya (3,250 yards, 61.2 percent, 23 touchdowns) played his best at the end of the season when he benefited from improved protection from his line, the emergence of explosive freshman wide receiver Ahmmon Richards (46 receptions, 866 yards, 18.8 yards per reception) and the improved play of tight end David Njoku (38, 654, 17.2), who caught seven TD passes. The offensive line's re-emergence after being dominated during the losing streak also helped Walton (1,065 yards, 5.5 yards per carry, 14 TDs) and Joe Yearby (592, 6.0) provide balance in the final four wins. With four freshmen in their front seven, including end Joe Jackson (7.5 sacks) and linebacker Shaq Quarterman (nine tackles for loss), and a secondary led by senior cornerback Corn Elder, Miami's defense held nine foes to 21 points or fewer.

    TRENDS:


    * West Virginia is 1-6 ATS in its last seven bowl games.
    * Miami is 4-0 ATS in its last four games overall.
    * Over is 4-0 in West Virginia's laast four neutral site games.
    * Under is 6-1 in Miami's last seven bowl games.

    CONSENSUS:
    The public is backing the underdog in this bowl game, with 59 percent of wagers on West Virginia to cover. Bettors also like the Over in this matchup, with 65 percent of wagers on it.


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    NCAAF

    Wednesday, December 28


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    Foster Farms Bowl Betting Preview: Indiana vs. Utah
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    Hunter Dimick was named to the All-Pac-12 First Team after leading the conference with 14.5 sacks.

    Indiana Hoosiers vs. Utah Utes (-6, 54.5)

    Game to be played at Levi's Stadium, Santa Clara, California

    Indiana looks to overcome the loss of Kevin Wilson when it takes on No. 19 Utah in Santa Clara, CA on Dec. 28. Wilson led the Hoosiers to back-to-back bowl seasons for the first time since 1990-91, but resigned abruptly on Dec. 1 amid allegations of player mistreatment, and Indiana's top brass wasted no time in promoting first-year defensive coordinator Tom Allen to head coach. Utah limps into the postseason having dropped three of its last four games after a promising start, which included wins over archival BYU and No. 9 USC, and the Utes hope to put the disappointment of losing four contests by a combined 19 points behind them in their first bowl matchup against a Big Ten team since 1996.

    The Utes have compiled an impressive 15-4 record in bowl games, including a 9-1 mark under Kyle Whittingham, which is the best winning percentage (90) among coaches in NCAA history. Utah has fared well against Big Ten opponents, winning five of the last six meetings since 2001, including two victories over Indiana during that span, and hopes the trend continues as it searches for its fourth consecutive postseason victory. "The biggest factor in our bowl success is the way our players approach the game and the work they put in," Whittingham told reporters. "Our guys are excited to head to California which is right in our recruiting footprint."

    Allen - who was nominated for the Broyles Award, which is given to the nation's top assistant - has engineered a remarkable turnaround on the defensive side of the ball as the Hoosiers improved from 112th to 41st nationally in total defense and 117th to 57th in scoring defense. "We got to this point by playing very good defense and playing together," Allen told reporters. "Utah will be a tremendous challenge as they are a great football team that has won a lot of bowl games in the last several years." The key to the game could hinge on the ability of Indiana's offensive line to slow down Utah's All-American defensive end Hunter Dimick, as the Hoosiers search for their first postseason win since 1991.

    TV:
    8:30 p.m. ET, Fox Sports.

    LINE HISTORY:
    Oddsmakers opened Utah as 6.5-point favorites, but they have since been bet down slightly to the current number of -6. The total opened at 54 and has been bet up a half-point to sit at 54.5. Check out the complete line history here.

    WEATHER REPORT:
    The forecast is calling for a clear night in Santa Clara, with temperatures hovering around 50 degrees for the game.

    INJURY REPORT:


    Indiana - WR J. Morris (questionable Wednesday, undisclosed), RB C. Gest (questionable Wednesday, ankle).

    Utah - QB - T. Williams (probable Wednesday, knee), RB J. Howard (questionable Wednesday, undisclosed), DB. D. Hatfield (doubtful Wednesday, disciplinary).

    ABOUT INDIANA (6-6, 5-7 ATS, 4-8 O/U):
    Junior quarterback Richard Lagow passed for 3,174 yards and 18 touchdowns in his first season as a starter but also threw 16 interceptions, including five picks over his last four games. Senior offensive lineman Dan Feeney, who has surrendered just two sacks in 45 career games, received first team All-America honors from the Associated Press to become the third player in program history to receive the accolade in back-to-back seasons. Junior linebacker Tegray Scales had a breakout season, registering a Big Ten-best 116 tackles, including 20.5 for loss.

    ABOUT UTAH (8-4, 7-5 ATS, 6-6 O/U):
    Senior running back Joe Williams came out of retirement to register five 100-yard games en route to 1,185 rushing yards, which is the seventh-best single-season total in program history despite missing four games. Sophomore punter Mitch Wishnowsky won the Ray Guy Award with the best net punting average in the nation (44.9) and ensured that a Utah player received the award for the third consecutive season after Tom Hackett was honored in 2014 and 2015. Dimick was named to the All-Pac-12 First Team after leading the conference with 14.5 sacks.

    TRENDS:


    * Indiana is 0-4 ATS in its last four neutral site games.
    * Utah is 6-0 ATS in its last six games versus Big Ten opponents.
    * Over is 6-2-1 in Indiana's last nine non-conference games.
    * Over is 5-2 in Utah's last seven bowl games.

    CONSENSUS:
    The public is on the favorite in this matchup, with 67 percent of wagers on Utah. As for the total, 63 percent of wagers are on the Over.


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    NCAAF

    Wednesday, December 28


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    AdvoCare V100 Texas Bowl Betting Preview: Texas A&M vs. Kansas State
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    Trevor Knight and the Aggies have been an nightmare for bettors, going 0-8 ATS in their last eight games.

    Texas A&M Aggies vs. Kansas State Wildcats (+2.5, 56.5)

    Game to be played at NRG Stadium, Houston, Texas

    A pair of former conference rivals square off in the AdvoCare V100 Texas Bowl on Dec. 28 in Houston, where Texas A&M faces Kansas State. The Aggies limp into this contest after losing four of their final six games, including an ugly 54-39 setback to LSU in the regular-season finale. Kansas State, meanwhile, has won five of its last six with the only loss a late collapse against a quality Oklahoma State squad.

    One of the key matchups to watch is the Kansas State rushing attack against the Texas A&M run defense. The Wildcats ran for nearly 2,800 yards and 36 touchdowns as a team with each of their top five runners averaging at least five yards per carry. Quarterback Jesse Ertz (945 yards) should see plenty of action on the ground against an Aggies squad that allowed at least 250 rushing yards in four of their final five games against Power 5 conference teams.

    Texas A&M leads the all-time series 8-7, but Kansas State has won the last three meetings (all when the teams were members of the Big 12). The most recent matchup was a four-overtime triumph in 2011 that helped the Wildcats earn bowl eligibility under legendary coach Bill Snyder, who is set to embark on his 19th postseason appearance with the Wildcats. The bad news for Kansas State is that despite the win over Texas A&M, it went on to lose its bowl game that season - part of a 1-7 mark in bowl games since 2004.

    TV:
    9 p.m. ET, ESPN.

    LINE HISTORY:
    Oddsmakers opened Texas A&M as 2-point favorites and they have been bet up slightly to the current number of Aggies -2.5. The total hit the board at 56.5 and was bet up to 57.5, before returning to the opening number. Check out the complete line history here.

    WEATHER REPORT:
    Indoors.

    INJURY REPORT:


    Texas A&M - QB T. Knight (probable Wednesday, knee), DB A. Watts (questionable Wednesday, leg), QB J. Hubenak (questionable Wednesday, shoulder).

    Kansas State - K M. McCrane (questionable Wednesday, hip), DB D. Shelley (questionable Wednesday, foot), OL A. Beecham (questionable Wednesday, undisclosed), RB A. Barnes (questionable Wednesday, stinger).

    ABOUT TEXAS A&M (8-4, 4-8 ATS, 4-7-1 O/U):
    The Aggies allowed Derrius Guice to run for an LSU-record 285 yards in the regular-season finale, but they also couldn't stop the Tigers' passing game as Danny Etling torched their secondary for 324 yards and two scores. "We were 6-0 and No. 4 in polls at one point. Here we are three weeks later, and we are unranked (in College Football Playoff rankings). That is disappointing," said quarterback Trevor Knight (16 passing TDs, 10 rushing), who hasn't thrown for 250 yards in a game since early September, although Trayveon Williams (1,024 rushing yards, eight TDs) gives the team plenty of offensive balance. First-team All-American defensive end Myles Garrett (8.5 sacks) is a force who could end up as the No. 1 overall pick in next year's NFL draft.

    ABOUT KANSAS STATE (8-4, 5-7 ATS, 6-6 O/U):
    The Wildcats don't get much help from their passing attack, as Ertz's season high is 207 passing yards and he only has eight TD passes on the year. However, the junior has 10 rushing scores - second on the team behind Winston Dimel's 12 - and gets plenty of help from Charles Jones (577 yards), Alex Barnes (442) and Justin Silmon (387). Kansas State's defense is trending in the right direction, as the team has allowed decreasing point totals in four straight games - 43, 21, 19 and most recently six points in its regular season-ending win against TCU.

    TRENDS:


    * Texas A&M is 0-8 ATS in its last eight games overall.
    * Kansas State is 1-7 ATS in its last eigght bowl games.
    * Under is 5-0-1 in Texas A&M's last six non-conference games.
    * Over is 4-1 in Kansas State's last five games.

    CONSENSUS:
    Another bowl game, another game where the public is siding with the favorite, with 55 percent of wagers on Texas A&M. As for the total, a sizeable 64 percent of wagers are on the Over.


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    NCAAF

    Wednesday, December 28


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    Birmingham Bowl Betting Preview: South Florida vs. South Carolina
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    The Bulls have set a program record with 10 wins as well as school marks for total offense (6,181 yards), scoring (523 points), TDs (71), rushing yards (3,501) and rushing TDs (44).

    South Florida Bulls vs. South Carolina Gamecocks (+10, 62)

    Game to be played at Legion Field, Birmingham, Alabama

    When USF and South Carolina square off in the Birmingham Bowl on Dec. 29 at Legion Field, it will mark just the second all-time meeting between the schools. It’s also a matchup of one of the nation’s most potent offenses in the Bulls’ Gulf Coast Offense against a Gamecocks defense that has taken on first-year coach Will Muschamp’s hard-nosed style. USF has hired Charlie Strong to replace head coach Willie Taggart, who departed for Oregon, but interim coach T.J. Weist will coach the Bulls in the bowl game with David Reaves serving as offensive coordinator.

    South Carolina is bowl-eligible for the 12th time in 13 seasons after doubling its win total in Muschamp’s first campaign in Columbia. The Gamecocks have won their last four bowl games – only Marshall’s five-game winning streak in bowl games is longer. The Gamecocks are 0-2 in the bowl games in Birmingham, though, having lost 24-14 to Missouri in the 1979 Hall of Fame Bowl and 20-7 to Connecticut in the 2010 Birmingham Bowl.

    The Bulls already have set a program record with 10 wins as well as school marks for total offense (6,181 yards), scoring (523 points), touchdowns (71), rushing yards (3,501) and rushing touchdowns (44). USF junior quarterback Quinton Flowers will be the most dynamic offensive player on the field for either team and finished the regular season ranked in the top 20 in the nation in nine offensive categories. Flowers already has set program records for total offense (3,976 yards), rushing yards (1,425), rushing touchdowns (15), total touchdowns (37) and 300-yard total offense games (eight).

    TV:
    2 p.m. ET, ESPN.

    LINE HISTORY:
    This line hit the board with South Florida favored by double digits at -10. They were briefly bet up to -10.5, but have since returned to the opening number. The total opened at 62.5 and has been bet down slightly to 62. Check out the complete line history here.

    WEATHER REPORT:
    At kickoff Thursday afternoon in Birmingham the weather is expected to be cloudy with a slight chance of showers and temperatures in the mid-50's. Wind may be a factor in the kicking and passing game with sustained winds expected to exceed 20 mph.

    INJURY REPORT:


    South Florida - DB L. Robbins (Questionable, shoulder), OL G. Bethel (Out Indefinitely, eligibility), G B. Atterbury (Out Indefinitely, leg), RB D. Tice (Out Indefinitely, ankle), S M. Dixon (Out For Season, shoulder), WR A. Legree (Out For Season, knee).

    South Carolina - RB A. Turner (Probable, knee), RB M. Denson (Questionable, knee), OL D. Stanley (Questionable, ankle), WR R. Davis (Questionable, hamstring), TE K. Markway (Out Indefinitely, ankle), QB L. Nunez (Out For Season, red shirt).

    ABOUT USF (10-2 SU, 8-4 ATS, 9-3 O/U):
    With Flowers leading the way, the Bulls averaged a whopping 515.1 total yards – including 292.2 on the ground – and 43.6 points during the regular season. Flowers and running back Marlon Mack (1,137 yards, 15 TDs) are a tough 1-2 punch on the ground, but Flowers can do damage with his arm and rarely makes mistakes – he has thrown 22 touchdown passes with just six interceptions. The Bulls haven’t been as consistent on the other side of the ball and have allowed at least 500 total yards in four of their last five games.

    ABOUT SOUTH CAROLINA (6-6 SU, 5-6-1 ATS, 4-8 O/U):
    The Gamecocks had won four of five and were feeling positive about the direction they were headed before a 56-7 rout at the hands of rival Clemson to close the regular season. The 622 total yards surrendered to the Tigers marred what was an otherwise encouraging season for Muschamp’s defense, which ranked 10th nationally with 25 takeaways – including 14 interceptions – and has been tough in the red zone, allowing touchdowns just 28 times in 49 trips inside the 20. A young offense came to life late in the season after freshmen Rico Dowdle (714 rushing yards, six TDs) and Jake Bentley (1,030 passing yards, six TDs, two interceptions) took on larger roles.

    TRENDS:


    * Bulls are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 vs. SEC.
    * Gamecocks are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 neutral site games.
    * Over is 5-1 in Bulls last 6 games overall.
    * Under is 3-0-1 in Gamecocks last 4 vs. AAC.

    CONSENSUS:
    The public is favoring the underdog South Carolina Gamecocks at a rate of 57 percent and the Under is picking up the majority of the totals wagers at 56 percent.


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    NCAAF

    Thursday, December 29


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    Belk Bowl Betting Preview: Arkansas vs Virginia Tech
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    Jerod Evans enters the postseason with 27 touchdown strikes and seven interceptions, not to mention 10 rushing scores.

    Arkansas Razorbacks vs No. 22 Virginia Tech Hokies (-7, 61)

    Game to be played at Bank of America Stadium, Charlotte, North Carolina

    Virginia Tech came up short in the ACC title game, but a win over Arkansas in the Belk Bowl on Dec. 29 would be a decent consolation prize for the Hokies. Virginia Tech and Arkansas will head to Charlotte for an intriguing matchup between two teams that posted some quality wins this season. The Hokies defeated North Carolina, Miami (Fla.) and Pittsburgh as part of a solid first season under coach Justin Fuente, while the Razorbacks topped TCU, Ole Miss and Florida as part of a 6-3 start before losing two of their final three games.

    The Hokies got big production in the ACC title game from the usual suspects - quarterback Jerod Evans (one passing TD, two rushing TDs), Travon McMillian (two rushing scores) and Cam Phillips (12 catches, 92 yards and a TD). Evans enters the postseason with 27 touchdown strikes and seven interceptions, not to mention 10 rushing scores, while McMillian has added six TDs on the ground and another three through the air. Phillips (70 catches, 868 yards) forms a dangerous tandem with Isaiah Ford (73 receptions, 1,038 yards) for the Hokies, who are seeking their fourth bowl victory in the last five seasons.

    The Razorbacks have won their last three bowl games, but they will likely need Austin Allen to play like he did in the first half of the season if they are going to extend their streak. Allen's first five games featured 12 passing TDs, a rushing score and only two interceptions - both in the season opener. His last seven games saw him throw 11 touchdowns and 10 interceptions, including multiple picks in a disappointing loss to Missouri to end the regular season.

    TV:
    5:30 p.m. ET, ESPN.

    LINE HISTORY:
    Oddsmakers opened the line with Virginia Tech as 6.5-point favorites and that quickly rose up to a touchdown. Earlier this week that line of 7 was faded down to as low as 6 before jumping back up to 7 on game day. The total opened at 61.5 and dropped to 61 and hasn’t moved off that number. Check out the complete line history here.

    WEATHER REPORT:
    The forecast at Bank of America Stadium is calling for a clear night in Charlotte, with temperatures hovering in the high-40’s. Winds heading to the west at 17.

    INJURY REPORT:


    Arkansas - LB Dre Greenlaw (questionable, foot), RB Kody Walker (questionable, foot), WR Cody Hollister (out, foot)

    Virginia Tech - RB Shai McKenzie (questionable, undisclosed)

    ABOUT ARKANSAS (7-5 SU, 5-7 ATS, 6-6 OU):
    In one sense, the Razorbacks are a balanced team as they score 30.8 points on average and they also give up 30.8 points per contest. Rawleigh Williams III ran for at least 117 yards seven times this season and totaled 322 yards and five rushing scores in the last two games - a high-scoring win over Mississippi State and the 28-24 loss to Missouri. “I think they’ll be very eager,” coach Bret Bielema, whose team will be facing the Hokies for the first time in school history, told reporters. “We’d like to play one this week to get that taste out of your mouth. Our guys will handle it the right way. We’ve got a good group of seniors.”

    ABOUT VIRGINIA TECH (9-4 SU, 7-6 ATS, 8-5 OU):
    The Hokies are appearing in their 24th straight bowl game, but of course it will be the first for Fuente, who helped his team surpass expectations after Frank Beamer failed to exceed eight wins in any of the last four seasons. "(Playing Arkansas) is going to be on line with the skill and the athletes of Pittsburgh and Clemson. That is the way I see it," said Fuente, whose team defeated Pitt in late October - one of three three-point wins for the Hokies this season. Ford totaled 10 catches for 143 yards and a touchdown in that win over the Panthers but has scored only one TD in five games since and hasn't reached 90 receiving yards in any of those contests.

    TRENDS:


    * Razorbacks are 6-1 ATS in their last 7 games following a straight up loss.
    * Hokies are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games following a straight up loss.
    * Hokies are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 vs. SEC.
    * Over is 13-3 in Hokies last 16 non-conference games.
    * Under is 7-1 in Razorbacks last 8 bowl games.

    For a full list of hot and cold trends click here.

    CONSENSUS:
    The public is on the underdog in this matchup, with 56 percent of wagers on Arkansas. As for the total, 59 percent of wagers are on the Over.


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  14. #29
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    Nov 2004
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    NCAAF

    Thursday, December 29


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    Alamo Bowl Betting Preview: Oklahoma State vs Colorado
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    Keeping QB Sefo Liufau healthy will be a key for Colorado as he was battling injuries and/or unable to finish each of the team’s three losses this season.

    No. 12 Oklahoma State Cowboys vs No. 10 Colorado Buffaloes (-3, 62.5)

    Game to be played at Alamodome, San Antonio, Texas

    Two former Big 12/Eight rivals clash in the 25th Alamo Bowl when No. 13 Oklahoma takes on No. 11 Colorado on Dec. 29 in San Antonio. Before Colorado jumped to the Pac-12 Conference in 2011, the programs met 46 times between 1920 and 2009 with the Buffaloes holding a 26-19-1 advantage. The Cowboys, however, won three of the last four meetings and emerged victorious in eight of their last nine contests overall against Pac-12 foes.

    Colorado’s sudden and unexpected turnaround - going from 5-40 in its first five seasons of Pac-12 play to 8-1 (10-3 overall) and winning the Pac-12 South - was one of the more surprising FBS developments and garnered coach fourth-year coach Mike MacIntyre the Associated Press, Home Depot and Walter Camp national coach of the year awards. The Buffaloes were dominated by College Football Playoff-bound Washington 41-10 in the Pac-12 championship game Dec. 2, but Colorado still has a chance to cap the program’s first winning season since 2005 with its first bowl win since the 2004 Houston Bowl. “What’s been so awesome about this team is they’ve looked adversity right in the face for a few years and didn’t let it break them, they let it make them,” MacIntyre said at the Dec. 8 Alamo Bowl news conference. “That’s why we’ve achieved.”

    Oklahoma State started the season 2-2 but proceeded to reel off seven straight victories - including double-digit wins over nationally ranked Texas and West Virginia - to set up a de facto Big 12 championship game Dec. 3 at Oklahoma. The game was tied at 17 at halftime, but the No. 7 Sooners owned the second half, outscoring the Cowboys 21-3 to cap their undefeated run through the Big 12 and send Oklahoma State into a month of bowl prep on a down note. “We want to win them all,” 12th-year Cowboys coach Mike Gundy said at the bowl news conference. “But I get over the games really fast because I believe if we think one second about the past, that keeps us from thinking about being positive in the future, then that’s one second that doesn’t give us an opportunity to be successful the next day.”

    TV:
    9 p.m. ET, ESPN.

    LINE HISTORY:
    Colorado opened this battle of top 25 ranked teams as 3-point favorites and was briefly bet up to 3.5, but has returned to the opening number of 3. The total opened at 62.5 and has been bet up half-point to 63. Check out the complete line history here.

    WEATHER REPORT:
    Dome

    INJURY REPORT:


    Oklahoma State - OL Larry Williams (probable, ankle), DE Jordan Brailford (questionable, leg)

    Colorado - OL Gerrad Kough (probable, ankle), QB Sefo Liufau (probable, ankle), DB Jaisen Sanchez (questionable, knee), LB Christian Shaver (questionable, suspension), DE Jaleel Awini (questionable, suspension), TE Chris Hill (questionable, suspension), WR Bryce Bobo (questionable, leg)

    ABOUT OKLAHOMA STATE (9-3 SU, 7-5 ATS, 7-5 OU):
    This will be the Cowboys’ 11th straight bowl appearance under Gundy, the former Oklahoma State quarterback, and it is also the program’s fourth overall appearance in the Alamo Bowl with the last one coming in 2010 (a 36-10 victory over Arizona). In quarterback Mason Rudolph (3,777 yards, 25 touchdown passes), running back Justice Hill (187 carries, 1,042 yards, five TDs) and wide receiver James Washington (62 catches, 1,209 yards, nine TDs), the Cowboys are one of six FBS teams with a 3,500-yard passer, 1,000-yard rusher and 1,000-yard receiver, and are averaging 492.1 yards (17th nationally) and 38.7 points (19th) per game. Free safety Jordan Sterns (team-most 96 total tackles) and defensive tackle Vincent Taylor (12 tackles for loss, six sacks) are the leaders for the Cowboys’ defense, which is surrendering 457.0 yards (108th FBS) and 28.1 points (tied for 65th) per contest but has forced 24 turnovers and ranks ninth nationally with a plus-10 turnover differential.

    ABOUT COLORADO (10-3 SU, 10-3 ATS, 5-8 OU):
    The Buffaloes are vying to become the fourth team in program history to win 11 games, and keeping record-setting senior quarterback Sefo Liufau (2,171 passing yards, 496 rushing, 18 total TDs) healthy will be a key as he was battling injuries and/or unable to finish each of the team’s three losses this season, including the Pac-12 title game. Running back Phillip Lindsay (230 carries, 1,189 yards, 16 TDs) and wide receiver Shay Fields (52 receptions, 845 yards, nine TDs) top the list of Liufau’s primary weapons with Colorado averaging 32.8 points (tied for 43rd FBS) and 446.3 yards (43rd) per outing. Led by linebacker Kenneth Olugbode (105 total tackles), linebacker Jimmie Gilbert (10.5 sacks) and safety Tedric Thompson (seven interceptions), Colorado ranks in the top 20 nationally in total defense (328.3 yards allowed), scoring (20.5 points) and passing defense (182.5) while also recording 26 takeaways (tied for seventh nationally), but veteran defensive coordinator Jim Leavitt is getting a sizable raise to take the same position at Oregon and likely won’t coach in the bowl game.

    TRENDS:


    * Cowboys are 4-1 ATS vs. a team with a winning record.
    * Buffaloes are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games following a straight up loss.
    * Under is 4-1 in Cowboys last 5 games on grass.
    * Under is 4-0 in Buffaloes last 4 neutral site games.

    For a full list of hot and cold trends click here.

    CONSENSUS:
    The public is on the underdog in this matchup, with 54 percent of wagers on Oklahoma State. As for the total, an overwhelming 69 percent of wagers are on the Over.


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  15. #30
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    Nov 2004
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    NCAAF

    Friday, December 30


    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Liberty Bowl betting preview: Georgia vs Texas Christian
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    Quarterback Kenny Hill passed for 3,062 yards and 15 touchdowns in his first season after transferring from Texas A&M, but the junior threw 13 interceptions.

    Georgia Bulldogs vs Texas Christian Horned Frogs (-2, 48.5)

    Game to be played at Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium, Memphis, Tennessee

    Neither Georgia nor TCU entered the season aiming for a berth in the Liberty Bowl in Memphis on Dec. 30, but that is where they will end disappointing campaigns. The Horned Frogs are tied with Oklahoma for the best record in the Big 12 the past three years (29-9), but after finishing in the top 10 in the country each of the past two years, they won just six times this season. The Bulldogs also fell short of expectations, going 7-5 in Kirby Smart’s first season as head coach after finishing 10-3 in 2014 and 2015.

    TCU’s roster features just 13 seniors, and head coach Gary Patterson looks to the bowl game as a springboard into next season. “It’s really about us growing up as a football team and finding out how we need to play going into next season, because we weren’t happy with this one,” Patterson told reporters. “Going 6-6 is not something we’re happy about.” The Horned Frogs lost three games by six points or less, including two in overtime, and closed the regular season with losses in four of their final six contests.

    Smart’s first season was marked by a 1-4 stretch in the middle of the season, a stirring upset victory over Auburn and then a bitter home loss to in-state rival Georgia Tech. The Bulldogs have spent practice time working on improving execution, especially at quarterback, where freshman Jacob Eason has shown flashes of brilliance mixed with first-year mistakes. “He’s got to do a better job of commanding the huddle for our team and being a leader,” Smart told reporters.

    TV:
    Noon ET, ESPN.

    LINE HISTORY:
    The line opened with TCU as 1.5-point dogs, that number has since jumped the fence and now stands TCU -2.5. The total opened at 49 and faded to 48, before rebounding to 48.5. Check out the complete line history here.

    WEATHER REPORT:
    The forecast for kickoff on Friday afternoon at Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium is sunny skies with temperatures in the mid-50’s.

    INJURY REPORT:


    Georgia - WR Jayson Stanley (probable, toe), DB Tyrique McGhee (questionable, leg), DT DaQuan Hawkins (questionable, ankle), LB Natrez Patrick (questionable, shoulder), LB Lorenzo Carter (questionable, knee), DB Kirby Choates (doubtful, personal), WR Michael Chigbu (doubtful, knee), DB Juwuan Briscoe (out, personal), DB Rico McGraw (out, personal)

    Texas Christian - QB Kenny Hill (probable, foot), PK Jonathan Song (questionable, toe)

    ABOUT GEORGIA (7-5 SU, 5-7 ATS, 5-7 OU):
    The Bulldogs received surprisingly good news Dec. 15 when running backs Nick Chubb and Sony Michel, who combined to rush for 1,741 yards and 10 touchdowns, announced they would return for their senior seasons. Eason completed 55 percent of his passes and threw for 14 touchdowns, but did not top 200 yards passing six times in 12 games (11 starts) as the Bulldogs ranked 11th in the SEC in scoring (24 points per game). Georgia’s defense forced 25 turnovers, tops in the conference, and ranked 18th nationally against the pass (186.9 yards per game).

    ABOUT TCU (6-6 SU, 3-9 ATS, 5-7 OU):
    Quarterback Kenny Hill passed for 3,062 yards and 15 touchdowns in his first season after transferring from Texas A&M, but the junior threw 13 interceptions. A knee injury to wide receiver KaVontae Turpin disrupted an offense that still averaged 31.7 points and 475 yards of total offense per game, as Kyle Hicks rushed for 954 yards and 12 touchdowns. Defensively, the Horned Frogs gave up 30 points six times, and followed up a dominant performance at Texas by allowing 30 points to Kansas State in the regular-season finale.

    TRENDS:


    * Bulldogs are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games following a straight up loss.
    * Horned Frogs are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games after scoring less than 20 points in their previous game.
    * Under is 5-0 in Bulldogs last 5 neutral site games.
    * Under is 8-1-1 in Horned Frogs last 10 Bowl games.
    * Under is 4-1 in Horned Frogs last 5 vs. a team with a winning record.

    For a full list of hot and cold trends click here.

    CONSENSUS:
    The public is on the underdog in this matchup, with 58 percent of wagers on Georgia. As for the total, an 55 percent of wagers are on the Over.


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