Iowa State Cyclones (2-0 SU, 1-1 ATS) at Connecticut Huskies (1-1 SU, 0-2 ATS), Friday September 16th, 2011 8:00PM EST, College Football Week 3
Rentschler Field East Hartford, CT
By Jay Horne, College Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: ISU +4/UConn -4
Over/Under Total: OFF
The Iowa State Cyclones knocked off their rivals in the Iowa Hawkeyes last week in a 44-41 triple overtime thriller. The win marked the Cyclones first victory over the Hawkeyes since the 2007 season and confirmed that Coach Paul Rhoads has Iowa State on the path to success. This week Iowa State takes the road and travels to East Hartford to battle with the Connecticut Huskies in attempt to reach the 3-0 mark for the first time since the 2005 season.
Their opponent is a Connecticut Huskies team that suffered a close loss on the road to Vanderbilt last week 24-21. The loss snapped a Huskies 6 game regular season winning streak and marked the first loss for new head coach Paul Pasqualoni moving the Huskies to 1-1 on the season. The Huskies are a team still trying to find their identity in the post Randy Edsall era and just maybe they will get the chance to right the ship when they take the national stage this Friday night in a big 8:00PM EST ESPN televised match-up.
Neither offense entering Friday night’s meeting had much to cheer about throughout the 2010 season. Both Connecticut and Iowa State ranked 95th and 99th in the nation in total offense averaging less than 325 yards per game. Last week Connecticut appeared even worse if that is even possible. The Huskies offense managed just 193 yards of total offense while giving up 4 turnovers against the Vanderbilt Commodores who are among the worst teams in the SEC.
The Huskies’ offensive problems starts and stops at the quarterback position. Last week, QB Johnny McEntee completed just 10 of 27 passing for 99 yards with 0 touchdowns and 3 interceptions. To say McEntee struggled, would be the understatement of the decade. Furthermore, there are not any clear answers if the quarterback situation is going to get better this season. Backup Michael Nebrich has only completed 4 of 10 passing this season without any touchdowns and 1 interception. The quarterback problems appear to be a problem that will not be going away any time soon.
However, the good news is Connecticut has had many successful seasons over the last few years without a premiere passing attack. The Huskies consistently produce strong rushing attacks year in and year out. This season freshman running back Lyle McCombs has shown some promising potential posting 100 yard plus performances in both games. McCombs is not a big powerful back, but has extreme quickness that can be dangerous in the open field. Expect Iowa State to focus their defensive attention on stopping McCombs and the Connecticut rushing attack.
The Iowa State offense biggest hurdle over the last two seasons has been inconsistency. The Cyclones offense was completely shutout by Oklahoma and Missouri in 2010. However, this is the same offense that posted 52 points in a win over Texas Tech and then scored 30 points in a close overtime loss to Nebraska. This season we have already seen similar performances through the opening two games. In the season opener, Iowa State struggled on offense and just barely skated by Northern Iowa 20-19. Then last week, the Cyclones torched the Iowa defense for 473 yards and 44 points.
This week the Cyclones offense will look for a repeat performance from the Iowa game. The Cyclones have the personnel to have a balanced offensive attack. QB Steele Jantz is a dual threat behind center. Jantz has rushed for 122 yards and two scores in the opening two games. Running back Shontrelle Johnson has rushed for 135 yards while averaging 5.0 yards per carry as well through those opening two games.
The Cyclones can definitely move the ball on the ground, but the x-factor relies on the arm of Steele Jantz. Jantz struggled in the opener against Northern Iowa tossing 1 touchdown compared to throwing 3 picks. However, the junior quarterback bounced back against the Hawkeyes last week completing 25 of 37 passing for 279 yards with 4 touchdowns and 0 interceptions. Obviously when Jantz throws the ball well, the Cyclones are extremely tough to defend. Therefore keep an eye on how Jantz starts this Friday night as it will likely set the tone for the Iowa State offense throughout the night.
Jay’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread – I like Iowa State to win this game straight up. Therefore the points are just extra. Take the ISU Cyclones plus the four points.
Are you still betting with a corner bookie? Find out why online is the better choice by reading our piece titled Betting Online vs. The Corner Street Bookie.
Editor's Picks - Each weekend our very own in-house All-American Editor makes his NCAA point spread predictions in an attempt to force fumbles, sack and intercept your bookie!
Expert College Football Picks - Free premium college foots plays against the spread from expert handicappers from around the web from week 1 through the National Championship.
Underdog of the Week Pick - We sort through it all and find out which University is getting "too many points" this week. If there was a Heisman Trophy for picking underdogs, we'd be a frontrunner. Expect a 57%+ winning percentage with these picks as we've got a keen ear for loud barking dogs.
Line Movement - NCAA football lines open early in the week and often times move up or down based on wagering activity, injuries to key players and weather. We decipher whether it's square or wiseguy action and predict the point spread winner based on value.
College Football Consensus Picks - We assess the public perception each week and let them pick the winners for us as we fade their selections which provides us with many trips into our bookies endzone.
Computer Picks - We enter them into the computer and the machine makes it's picks. This is a great guide especially when betting totals! These are available after the first few weeks of the season.
Trends - Despite what you have been told or read on tout sites, the trend ain't your friend. We however turn the tables and fade the almighty trend for what should be some great profits over time.
2016/2017 College Football Predictions - Bob gives his picks to win each major conference. At the end, he gives his prediction on who thinks will win the 2017 National Championship game at Raymond James Stadium on January 9th.
2016 Heisman Trophy Predictions - DeShaun Watson is favored to win the award at +575 with Stanford RB Christian McCaffrey (+575) and LSU RB Leonard Fournette (+850) close behind. However, the real value may be with Oregon Ducks RB Royce Freeman at 40/1.
2016-2017 College Football Championship Predictions - NCAA football experts have the National Championship as a 4-horse race which includes Bama at +665, Clemson +725, LSU +900 and Ohio State +1075. Teams on teh bubble include Oklahoma at +1200, Michigan +1300 and FSU at +1350. Jay gives his pick to win it all along with how his top 15 rankings for season's end. Get your bets in early before your favorite team's line drops!
MyBookie - Get a HUGE 50% bonus (up to $1000 FREE!) after making an initial deposit of $100 or more! Great at getting Visa cards to work for deposits.
Bovada - Boasts the highest credit card acceptance rate on the internet! HUGE menu of wagers for you to choose from! One of few online sportsbooks to offer Texas Hold'em! 50% bonus up to $250 in free cash!
5Dimes - 15 team parlays! 20 point teasers! Reduced juice betting odds! Buy up to 15 points! Most props on the web!
Bookmaker - Offers a HUGE 50% sign up bonus up to $300! Enjoy LIVE college football betting where you can jump into the action at any time during the game and place a bet! This gives you a huge advantage!
Heisman Trophy Betting Odds - Clemson QB DeShaun Watson will have the ball in his hands a TON and he plays on a good team so he's the obvious favorite to win the award this year at +575. Leonard Fournette at 8.5/1 looks like he could play in the NFL right now. Bama WR Calvin Ridley brings experience and big-time playmaking ability and will be featured on National TV a bunch, giving him a legit darkhorse shot. It's unlikely to happen as offensive players usually win this honor, but Michigan DB Jabrill Peppers (75-1) and Texas AM DT Myles Garret (110-1) could be in the running as well. It might be a good year to bet more than one prediction!
Odds to Win the 2016 College Football Championship - The Alabama Crimson Tide are favored to be repeat winners of the National Championship this year at +700 followed by Ohio St. at +750 and Clemson at +800. Things drop off a bit with the Michigan Wolverines, LSU Tigers and Oklahoma Sooners all coming in at +1200. Check out your favorite school's odds here!