Texas Bowl Pick: Arkansas vs. TCU

by | Dec 29, 2020 | cfb

Arkansas Razorbacks (3-7 SU, 7-3 ATS) vs. TCU Horned Frogs (6-4, 7-3), 12/31/20

Time: 8 pm ET Thursday, Dec. 31

Where: NRG Stadium

TV: ESPN

Point spread: Ark +4.5/TCU -4.5 (BetNow - Bet your NFL playoffs picks FREE by scoring a 100% bonus on your first deposit of $100 to $1000 there!)

Over/Under: 57

Old Southwest Conference foes meet again when Texas Christian tangles with Arkansas in the Texas Bowl on New Year’s Eve in Houston. The Horned Frogs started slowly this season, then won five of their last six games. On the other end, the Razorbacks started great (for them) but lost their last four straight and probably shouldn’t even be in a bowl. How are we playing this game with our free college football bowl betting pick?

Texas Bowl Betting Odds

College football bowl betting odds opened TCU at -5.5 over Arkansas, with an over/under of 57.5. Early betting action then dipped that Texas Bowl spread to -4.5 and that total to 57.

According to Sagarin’s ratings at USAToday.com, seven points for this game should favor the Horned Frogs.

Texas Bowl Betting Preview

Arkansas, under another new coaching regime, was expected to finish last in the SEC West this season and did. But the Razorbacks actually beat expectations, won more games – three – than they did the previous two seasons, and covered the spread seven out of 10 games. The Hogs started 3-2, with one loss coming on a late field goal against Auburn. And while Arkansas lost its last four games, one came by three points to LSU, another on a field goal at the buzzer against Missouri.

Most recently, though, the Razorbacks received a dose of reality, losing 52-3 to No. 1 Alabama back on.
Dec. 12.

So the Hogs played 3-7 this season against what Sagarin rates as the No. 1 toughest schedule in college football this season.

Normally, of course, Arkansas would not have made a bowl game this season, with just the three wins. But this year is different.

The Razorbacks played 0-7 SU but 4-3 ATS this season against teams that finished at .500 or better. They covered as 28-point dogs against Georgia, 13-point dogs against Auburn, 14-point dogs against Texas A&M, and three-point dogs against Missouri.

Arkansas hit the 30-point mark four times over its last seven games and gave up at least 50 points three times over its previous four contests. On the season, the Hogs out-gained just three of their ten opponents and out-rushed three foes.

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Meanwhile, TCU figured to finish around fourth in the Big 12 this season and ended up fifth. The Frogs started 1-3, with a three-point loss to a pretty good Iowa State team, an upset loss to Kansas State, and a rather non-competitive loss to Oklahoma. But the schedule got a little easier, and TCU finished 5-1, the only loss coming against West Virginia, ending with a 52-10 romp over Louisiana Tech back on Dec. 12.

So the Horned Frogs finished 6-4 playing against Sagarin’s 45th-toughest schedule.

TCU out-gained eight of its ten opponents this season and out-rushed seven of those ten foes.

The Frogs played 3-3 SU, 4-2 ATS vs. teams that finished at .500 or better this season. They got a bit lucky to cover against Iowa State, scoring a meaningless touchdown on the last play of the game, but beat Texas outright as 11-point dogs. TCU couldn’t cover as a seven-point dog against the Sooners or getting three against West Virginia but beat Oklahoma State outright at +3 and covered easily against Louisiana Tech as a 21-point favorite.

The Frogs hit the 50-point mark twice in their last three games and limited their previous six opponents to 20 points per game.

Sagarin ranks the SEC West, home of the Razorbacks, as the No. 1 conference in the country this season, with the Big 12 coming in at No. 2.

These former SWC rivals, who met every season from 1934-1991, met most recently three seasons ago, a 28-7 Frogs win.

College Football Betting Trends

  • Over the last five bowl seasons, the SEC is 9-6 SU but 7-8 ATS vs. the Big 12.
  • Arkansas is 3-1 both SU and ATS over its last four bowl games.
  • TCU is 4-1 SU, 3-2 ATS over its last five bowl games.

Totals Report

Under are 6-4 in Razorbacks games this season, even though they averaged 61 total points. Arkansas played against five totals of 60 or more.

Totals are split 5-5 in Frogs games this season, which are averaging 55 points.

Free College Football Bowl Pick

TCU won five of its last six games; Arkansas lost its final four. The Frogs are out-rushing opponents this season by 88 yards per game, while the Hogs are getting out-rushed by 41 yardso per game. And TCU has been very good in bowl games under Coach Patterson. Plus, the line moved in our favor. We like the Frogs here, minus the points. Note: Did you know that you can bet on games at -105 odds instead of -110? Imagine how much money you’d save over time! Find this beautiful offer at BetAnySports Sportsbok!

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