Arkansas State Red Wolves (4-2 SU, 5-1 ATS) vs. Louisiana-Lafayette Ragin Cajuns (3-3 SU, 2-4 ATS)
College Football Week 9
Date and Time: Tuesday, October 21, 2014, 8:00 pm EST
Where: Cajun FIeld, Lafayette, La.
TV: ESPN2, DirecTV - 209
by Badger, Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: Ark. St. -2/UL-Laf. +2
Over/Under Total: 54
Two teams streaking to the top of the Sun Belt Conference standings now that conference play has begun will meet in primetime Tuesday night when the Arkansas State Red Wolves travel to Cajun Field to take on the Lafayette Ragin Cajuns in a battle of conference contenders on ESPN2.
Both teams enter Tuesdays nights tilt with 2-0 records in the Sun Belt, so the game will have a little extra on the line as the victor will remain in the hunt chasing Georgia Southern for the conference crown. Both will enter the game in the midst of win streaks as well, as Arkansas State hasnt lost since Sept. 13th (to Miami 41-20) and has won three straight including a 52-10 route of Georgia State in their last game back on October 11th. Lafayette has won two straight, including the game on ESPN2 last Tuesday night, a 34-10 drilling of Texas State last week in primetime on the road.
The point spread for the Tuesday night game opened with Arkansas Sate as 1.5-point favorites on the road, and after more and more sportsbooks starts listing a number more and more that number is coming up Arkansas State minus -2. As of press time, the over/under total has yet to open and is still off the board.
The Red Wolves find themselves favorites on the road in due part to a powerful offense that is averaging 221 yards rushing the ball every game, the 29th best tally in FBS. Quarterback Fredi Knighten is a typical dual-threat QB out of the Sun Belt (7 passing TD, 6 rushing TD), leading a Red Wolves offense that as a unit is averaging 454 yards a game including competitive games against Miami and Tennessee.
Lafayette has its own dual threat QB in Terrence Broadway, and the Ragin Cajuns run the ball for nearly 200 yards a game too (195 ypg), which will make things interesting against a Red Wolves defense that one of the stiffest units against the run allowing only 114.7 yards per game which is 22nd in FBS.
In this series, the last two seasons the visitor has won this game straight up on the road. Last year Lafayette went on the road and won, 23-7, as a pick em. The year before Arkansas State came to Cajun Field and won big, 50-27, as 3.5-point underdogs. The road team is also a solid 4-1 ATS in the last five in the series.
Before you jump all over what looks like and easy wager on the chalk Red Wolves, note that Arkansas State is historically not a good side to be on. Despite being 5-1 ATS this season, Arkansas State is just 1-5 ATS against the Ragin Cajuns over the years. Lafayette has not helped their own cause either, going just 2-5 ATS in their last seven home games.
Badgers Pick to Cover the Point Spread: Im not a fan of taking the favorite, but since the number is still so small at minus -2, I find myself leaning toward Arkansas State.