NCAA Week 8 Football Betting – BYU Cougars at TCU Horned Frogs
Two nationally-ranked teams from the Mountain West Conference will get together Thursday night on national television when the BYU Cougars (6-0 SU, 2-3 ATS) visit Fort Worth to play the Horned Frogs of Texas Christian (6-1 SU, 4-2 ATS) in NCAA college football action that is scheduled to take place at 8 PM ET at Amon Carter Stadium (natural turf).
Thursday, October 16
BetUS NCAA Football Betting Odds: BYU -2
Here are some of the NCAA college football betting trends as they relate to this matchup:
* BYU has won its last 16 games SU
* BYU has won its last six road games SU
* TCU has won nine of its last ten games SU
* TCU has won its last five home games SU
* TCU has covered 14 of its last 18 home games
* BYU has won four of the last five meetings SU
Simply put, it’s offense versus defense here. TCU is the top-rated defense in all of Division I football,. giving up less than 3.8 yards a play and 207 yards per game. Against the run the Horned Frogs are allowing .86 yards per carry, which is more than a yard fewer than any other team in the country! And it’s not as if teams are feasting on their secondary either, as the Frogs are permitting only 48% completions and have snared ten interceptions. This team gets pressure on the passer (27 sacks to lead the nation by a decisive margin) and has yielded more than one offensive touchdown in just one game this season.
Of course, that one game was against the only genuinely credible opposition TCU has faced. That would be Oklahoma, where the Sooners got off to a 21-3 first-quarter lead and never looked back. Yes, the Frogs did manage to stymie the OU running game (32 carries for 56 yards out of the running backs). But Sam Bradford threw for 411 yards and four TD’s, and was good for more than 21 yards per completion.
This becomes a problem against BYU’s super-efficient Max Hall, who has 20 TD passes and a 70% completion rate. The good news for BYU is that its offensive line probably has enough to slow the TCU pass rush a little, having permitted just two sacks all year. The bad news is that BYU’s slate has been even weaker than TCU’s, with a squeaker against a subpar Washington team (you know the whole story on that one) and the most significant wins coming against UCLA and New Mexico.
Nonetheless, BYU does not rely on a running game, and Hall can spread it around to enough people, like Austin Colle (47 catches, 8 TD’s), Dennis Pitta (40 receptions) and Michael Reed (19 catches for a 20-yard average), not to mention RB Harvey Unga (24 catches) that he can make TCU defend the entire field.
We recognize that TCU has covered 14 of its last 18 games in Fort Worth, but at the same time we know that the numbers posted by the defense may be somewhat bloated. Plus, we’re not altogether sold on Marcus Jackson (3 TD’s, 2 INT’s) in the saddle for TCU. We’re going to lay a reasonable number with the BCS Bowl-seeking Cougars, the two-point favorite in the BetUS Sportsbook NCAA college football betting odds.