No. 10 TCU Horned Frogs (4-0 2-1 ATS) vs. Air Force Falcons (3-2 1-2-1 ATS) Falcon Stadium, United States AF ACA, CO 7:30 PM EST Saturday October 10, 2009
By Jason Green of Predictem.com
Point Spread: Horned Frogs -10 / Falcons +10
This Saturday night the Air Force Falcons host the undefeated TCU Horned Frogs in a big Mountain West Conference game for both teams. Even though the Horned Frogs are 4-0 and the Falcons are 3-2 the Falcons are already 2-0 in the MWC race while this is the first conference game for the Horned Frogs. Air Force does have a solid team and in their 2 losses they have lost by a total of only 10 points. Last week Air Force lost to Armed Forces rival Navy 16-13 in OT while the Horned Frogs crushed SMU 39-14.
The game between Air Force and Navy could not be any closer, as both were pretty even in terms of total yards, passing yards, rushing yards, time of possession and both teams had 2 turnovers. The game went to OT and on the first Navy possession in the extra period they kicked a 38-yard field goal while Air Force could not hit from 31 yards out. The Falcons covered the spread, as even though they lost by 3 points they were underdogs in the game by 3.5 points.
In the Horned Frogs 39-14 win over SMU the Mustangs did have more passing yards than the Frogs (240 to 189), but TCU dominated on the ground (229 rushing yards to -16 rushing yards) and they got a TD on a 71-yard punt return and they held the ball for almost 10 more minutes. However, they won in a sloppy manner, as they had 3 turnovers including 2 lost fumbles. The Horned Frogs were favored by 28 points in the game so they did not cover the spread and the posted total of 53 was hit right on the mark.
The big question in this game is can either team stop the other team’s rushing offense? The Falcons rank 2nd in the nation in rushing yards per game and the Horned Frogs rank 13th.
The Horned Frogs do not have the best passing offense, but they do rank 76th in the nation with 209.3 passing yards game while the Falcons rank 119th with only 85 passing yards per game. To say the Falcons have a one-dimensional offense is like saying the BCS rankings at the end of the year are easy to figure out. Yeah, major understatement.
If the Horned Frogs can stop the Falcons on the round they should have no problem winning this game. Air Force features a couple of solid RB’s in FB Jared Tew (291 yds 3 TD) and RB Asher Clark (277 yds 5 TD). These guys will have to move the chains in this game or the Falcons will be grounded.
It will not be easy for the Falcons to run since the Horned Frogs have the best run defense in the nation only allowing an average of 47 rushing yards per game.
Air Force ranks 46th in the nation in run defense, as they are giving up an average of 120 yards per game on the ground. They will have to contain TCU RB Joseph Turner (299 yds 5 TD), who is averaging an impressive 5.9 yards per carry.
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The TCU offense is led by QB Andy Dalton (814 yds 6 TD 2 INT), who is a legit threat with his arm and in last week’s win over SMU he was 17/26 for 226 yards and 2 TD’s. Air Force does have a solid secondary, as their pass defense ranks 5th in the nation.
TCU has to hold onto the ball and cut down on their turnovers, which they did not do last week turning the ball over 3 times.
In a couple trends for this game the Horned Frogs are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games when playing the Falcons and the Horned Frogs are 5-1 SU in its last 6 road games.
Jason’ Pick: This game will come down to, which team can stop the run and the Horned Frogs have the advantage being the top-ranked run defense in the nation. TCU can also pass the ball while the Falcons cannot, as this game will be a blowout if Air Force cannot run the ball. I look for the Horned Frogs to win this game easily and they will have no problem covering the 10-point spread.