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Louisville Cardinals will have the most wins in the AAC

Handicapping AAC Football

The brand new American Athletic Conference should be pretty competitive in its first season. I see a couple of teams that could finish 11-1, with the favourite Louisville Cardinals reaching that record and possibly being joined by Cincinnati too.

The Cardinals have to travel to Cincinnati and to close the season and should win that one to give themselves the edge, if they need it.

Both teams are good and have scheduled well.

Who Will Have the Most Wins in the American Athletic Conference?

Louisville Cardinals
Win Total Over/Under: 10.5
BCS Champion Odds: +2000
Conference Winning Odds: -160

Why Louisville will have the most wins in the AAC this season?

Talent: UL has the best quarterback in the league by far in Teddy Bridgewater. He is a real difference maker and cool customer too…but he is not the only talent on this team as the Cardinals have 6 players on the All-Conference team heading into the season, scattering them across the lineup including both safeties.

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Excluding special teamers that gives them 25% of the roster, and they have some players on the second team too. Bridgewater may be the only elite special player on their roster but they are more stacked than the other teams and coach Charlie Strong is building great depth too. With Bridgewater getting better every game look for WR Devante Parker to really emerge.

At 6’3” he is a tough check for most college cornerbacks.

Schedule: Whether the program knew they would be good this season or not they did a great job scheduling for a perfect or near perfect season.

The greatest challenge they will face outside the conference is a trip to Lexington to face the Kentucky Wildcats, who are breaking in a new coach – Louisville lost to UK in Coach Strong’s first season but has beaten them the last two Other than that they get visits from Ohio, FIU and Eastern Kentucky. Ohio is well coached coach team out of the MAC, and won’t back down, but they shouldn’t really threaten them either. [soliloquy id=”82219″]

In conference they have only one tough road game, a visit to Cincinnati to close the season. They have won their last regular season game every season since Strong took over and will do so again. The home sched should be a breeze. Rutgers sometimes gives them fits but I think they will be down this year

Coaching: When Charlie Strong was hired from the SEC there wasn’t a lot of buzz and a couple of 7-6 seasons didn’t create much either. However, last year the Cardinals got to 11 victories including a bowl game upset of Florida, where he proved himself as a defensive coach.

Strong is a good coach who stresses fundamentals and he is an excellent recruiter. He needs to do a better job managing the team so they don’t stumble against opponents they shouldn’t like they did last year against Syracuse and UConn but he seems perfect for a program that is really good even though it is a basketball school.

He has them ready to compete and win when they leave the AAC for the ACC next season.

Prediction: 11-1

Louisville is very good but they are not quite at the level of the top 10 or so program in the country this season. Still in looking at the odds at the top of the page the one that stands out to me is the +2000 to be BCS champs.

No I would not make them a favourite to get there but they have a really good chance at running through their schedule perfect which means with a little, make that a lot of, help they could sneak into the Championship Game.

Making it there is really the battle but if you do you never know. Strong has won two of his three bowl games at Louisville and he won’t be intimidated about facing a team from the SEC, he is 3-1 against them for his career and has won 3 in a row.

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About The Wiesguy

The Wiesguy is a newcomer to the handicapping scene. Hailing from Toronto, Canada he is always sweet on the underdogs and you can often find his thoughts, musings and picks at moneydogs.blogspot.com.