Louisiana Tech Bulldogs vs. Western Kentucky Hilltoppers Point Spread – Pick Against the Spread

Louisiana Tech Bulldogs (1-0 SU, 1-0 ATS) vs. Western Kentucky Hilltoppers (1-0 SU, 1-0 ATS)
College Football Week 2
Date/Time: Thursday September 10th, 6:00PM EST
Where: Houchen Industries L.T. Smith Stadium Bowling Green, K.Y.
TV: FS1
by Jay, NCAA Football Handicapper, Predictem.com

Point Spread: LT +2/WKU -2
Over/Under Total: 65.5

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A promising matchup awaits this Thursday night when the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers host the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs at Houchen Industries L.T. Smith Stadium for a Conference USA showdown. The Bulldogs made a Conference USA Championship appearance last year despite a close loss to Marshall and are looking for another strong run in 2015 as the favorites in the West division. Last week the Bulldogs offense got off to a crisp start with nearly 600 yards of total offense in a 62-15 thumping over the Southern Jaguars. This week the competition picks up in the Bulldogs first road test of the season in Bowling Green against the Hilltoppers of Western Kentucky.

Western Kentucky on the other hand returns one of the most veteran groups in the conference and the team is coming off the heels of a solid 14-12 victory at Vanderbilt. Despite losing the time of possession battle by a near 2-1 margin and a rather suspect offensive debut, the Hilltoppers defense come up with big stops including 3 turnovers which helped earn the victory over the Commodores. This week Western Kentucky could really get the 2015 campaign kicked off in the right direction if they can score another victory in what is expected to be a close game in an highly important conference matchup.

Last year the Hilltoppers were embarrassed at Louisiana Tech in their biggest loss of the season in a 59-10 thumping. Not only does this Thursdays game provoke the opportunity for Western Kentucky to get a little redemption from that embarrassing loss last year but a win this Thursday would really give them an early jump in the conference race. The Hilltoppers key to success this Thursdays will be getting an outstanding effort on the defensive side of the football.

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The Bulldogs have another extremely talented offense that has only been strengthened by the addition of former Florida quarterback Jeff Driskel. The former Gators quarterback ignited his Louisiana Tech campaign last week with 5 total touchdowns that included 4 passing and another on the ground. Driskel posted stellar passing numbers hitting 12 of 15 passes for 274 yards to go with those 4 touchdowns. The Bulldogs offense lost some talent from their 2014 group that terrorized defenses on the regular but last Saturdays showing against Southern definitely hinted at the fact they could be just as good this season with Driskel at the helm.

For Western Kentucky, the defense has to be better than they were last year or even last week for that matter. It is imperative that the Hilltoppers find ways to get off the field this Thursday. Despite holding Vanderbilt to just 12 points, the defense still gave up nearly 400 yards of offense in what was an ugly game on both sides of the football. Immediate improvement will have to be made this week in order for a 2-0 start to be accomplished. Offensively, the Hilltoppers have the returning talent at the skill positions to put the pressure back on the Bulldogs defense.

Senior quarterback Brandon Doughty returns after a great 2014 season that included 4,830 yards passing, a 67% completion percentage, with 49 touchdowns, and just 10 picks. Doughty will have the targets of Taywan Taylor and Tyler Higbee at his disposal along with a premiere running threat of Leon Allen in the backfield. Allen had 1,542 rushing yards with 13 touchdowns for the Hilltoppers last season and he will provide the balanced attack with Doughty for the offense going forward. Despite the returning talent, the offense did not look as strong as expected against Vanderbilt last week so it will be interesting to see if they get on track this week because points will be needed.

Jay’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread: I never like to base game decisions on past weeks performance definitely given the fact both teams faced completely different talent levels. However, I believe that Driskel is going to fit in nicely to this Louisiana Tech offense. Not only do I expect the Bulldogs to get the win but I do not believe will be as close as predicted. Take Louisiana Tech +2

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