This segment will "air" every Thursday throughout the season. I will breakdown the upcoming game and give a prediction as it relates to the betting line. Sure, this is aimed at our degenerate gambler fans but I think it will be informative for the non-betting folks as well. Feel free to post a comment regarding your thoughts. This segment is meant to be unbiased as the only color that matters here is green - as in US currency.
UW comes in with all kinds of accolades this season. A returning QB, a Heisman hyped RB, a deep OL, untapped potential at WR and a real treat at TE. UNLV, on the other hand, has had a QB competition throughout its entire camp, a returning RB from last season who rushed for 541 yards, 4 returning starters on the OL and not much to talk about as it relates to WR or TE.
UW has some potential questions marks in the DL and secondary. There are good reports out of camp as to how these guys are performing but until it happens on game day, I'm not sold. UNLV's Defense was terrible last year and could not stop the run to save their lives. UNLV returns an experience DB crew but experience doesn't always result in good... which I feel is the case here.
UNLV is at home and comfortable there. In the past 5 seasons, 81% of their wins were at home. Weather - Saturday has a high of 107, expect game time temps in the 90's.
Walking the Line:
UW -20.5 O/U 57.5
UNLV comes into this contest totally over-matched. With that said, they also come into this game with a new coaching regime led by former Montana Grizzley head coach Bobby Hauck. Hauck comes into this program with nothing but success in his wake. He has gotten rid of the UNLV spread offense and is committed to being a physical, run first style offense. I expect Hauck will use this game (specifically UW) as an example to the UNLV football program of what it will need to be to be a winner. Expect UW to jump out of the gates early with some early first half points and continue their lead into the second half. Due to the heat/cramps/potential for injury, I expect to see some of the Badger familiars on the sidelines in the 4th quarter. I also expect to see Hauck turn to the 2nd qb for a spark in the second half...and get it. Look out for late UNLV score vs a predominently 2nd string defense on the field for UW.
I like UNLV + 20.5 with a "turned off tv cover".