G.W. Gras

Senior Writer for The Bears Brawl and Lead Host of The Bears Brawl Podcast.

Wake Forest Demon Deacons -3 at Boston College Eagles

Over / Under 71

The Demon Deacons, not only have one of the most original nicknames in College sports, but they also have one of it’s best offenses. Wake Forest quarterback Jamie Newman is completing passes at a 71% completion rate and is averaging 9.5 yards per pass.

Running back Kenneth Walker has been helping Newman out a lot averaging 10 yards a rush. Now, that number seems gaudy and kinda-sorta inflated and it is due to the fact Walker has netted a 96 yard run during the season. Even if you take that run out of his stats for the season, he is still averaging 7 yards a rush.

Boston College’s rush defense is allowing 4.6 yards a rush, and after calculation the SMASH average, this means Walker should crank out somewhere around 5.8 yards a rush.

Against the pass, Boston College is doing themselves no favors against the aerial attack of the Demon Deacons giving up a completion percentage of 68%.

On offense, the Eagles of Boston College have been pretty good. Quarterback Anthony Brown has been netting just below 8 yards a pass, but struggling with a completion percentage of 53.5%. The two running backs of AJ Dillon (4.7 ypc) and David Bailey (5.4 ypc) is where this offense starts and ends though.

Source: Grant Halverson/Getty Images North America

Most of Boston College’s offensive numbers look good because they got to play against Richmond and Rutgers. . . against Va Tech, their two backs averaged 3.4 yards on the ground. . .

Lets also not forget this is the same Boston College team that lost to Kansas.

Nobody loses to Kansas, like. . .ever.

Coach Steve Addazio has done great since his arrival at 2013 to Boston College and this may be more of a “down-season” then a season of him on the “hot seat.” Regardless, I expect the road team to take this win by at least 10-13 points.

The Pick: Wake Forest -3

 

 

SMU Mustangs -8 at South Florida Bulls

Over / Under 59.5

You know what UCF is now? Many people expected South Florida to be that kind of powerhouse team, outside of the power-five conferences. These two programs are very much going in different directions – even after UCF’s loss last weekend, they are still primed to finish as a ranked team this year, whereas South Florida will struggle to get to five wins.

Charlie Strong once upon a time was a guy who many thought would be one of the best head coaches in College Football, but after flopping in Texas, he seems to be falling flat at South Florida.

Source: Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images North America

The Bulls are 1-2 this season, with their victory coming to the unknown South Carolina State, and losing to Wisconsin – which is forgivable and then losing to Georgia Tech – gross.

Both teams have decent rush defenses and below average pass defenses, so on paper the team with the more efficient offense should win this one. That would be SMU who is averaging 4.6 yards on the ground, which is a whole yard more than South Florida, but the Mustangs of SMU are completing 67% of their passes thanks to QB Shane Buechele. His touchdown to interception ratio is something that’s “eh-worthy” of 7:4.

It’s just hard to be confident putting anything on South Florida, even at home. Eight is a tough number but the Mustangs can pull off a double digit win, with both teams’ best efforts.

The Pick: SMU -8

 

 

Louisiana Lafayette Ragin’ Cajuns -3.5 at Georgia Southern

Over / Under 61

The Ragin’ Cajuns opened up the season with a ten point loss to Mississippi state and after that, they have proven to handle business averaging 323 rushing yards a game and 565 passing yards a game.

Louisiana Lafayette goes into Georgia Southern to play against a team that has been SEC tested as well, losing 55-3 in their opening week to LSU. They also put up a good fight against the Minnesota Gophers but ultimately lost 35-32.

Georgia Southern was able to stop the Gophers rush attack but was at the mercy of the passing game. The Eagles are allowing a 61% completion percentage and trying to off-set that is there 2.6 yards a rush they hold opponents to on the ground.

When looking at the numbers, the Cajuns should have their way, easily, through the air. After calculating the SMASH average, the Cajuns will still average 5 yards a carry against the Eagles.

Georgia Southern is just to one dimensional to get an edge over the Cajuns who are 6-1 ATS in their last seven road games.

The Pick: Louisiana Lafayette -3.5

Source: Brian Blanco/Getty Images North America

Middle Tennessee State Blue Raiders +24.5 at Iowa Hawkeyes

Over / Under 49.5

When the Big Ten plays the MAC it’s usually looked at as a “walk-through”, or a “warm-up” game for the team from the Big Ten.

Coming off their bye week, the Iowa Hawkeyes take on Mid Tenn. State in what is a nine week stretch to end their season.

Iowa is as blue collar as they come, with a steady 4.4 ypc on the ground assisted by a “pass if you need to” aerial attack that is completing 62% of their passes. Looking into it though, the Hawkeyes are the second to last in yards passing, only ahead of the offensively challenged Northwestern.

Middle Tennessee State seems to have a more explosive and balanced offensive attack, but they were held to 21 by Michigan and 18 by Duke. They blew up for 45 against lowly Tennessee State.

Iowa has played teams to the level of Mid Tenn State like Rutgers (won 30-0) and Miami of Ohio (38-14). This tells me the Blue Raiders have a chance. . . at covering. A back door cover, might ( I repeat, MIGHT) put this game over 50 as well.

The Pick: Middle Tennessee State +24.5 and the Over 49.5