Today's Free Picks for
Posted at 1:00 PM EST.
Miami OH -2 over North Texas
Toyota Stadium – Frisco, TX
Frisco Football Classic
3:30 PM EST. The Mean Green come into this contest in exquisite form, as they have won five straight to gain bowl eligibility and have covered their last six against the number. Despite the positive results recently, UNT opened taking back 4½ points before the efficient market (that continues to get hammered by the way) very quickly moved in on the Mean Green and bet them down to the present number you see here. Furthermore, North Texas owns a 45-23 rout of then-undefeated UTSA as a 9½-point dog to close out their regular season but we would also be quick to highlight that UTSA had many skeptics. The Roadrunners were undefeated at one point and yet were unranked in the College Football Playoff Rankings because they played a bunch of nobodies. The Roadrunners came from behind to edge out UAB in dramatic fashion, they were forced to rally against Southern Miss to keep their undefeated season alive, and earlier in the campaign had to hold off the likes of UNLV. The point is, the writing was on the wall with UTSA, so it’s not actually a shocker that the Mean Green upset them but the market heavily focuses on results and final scores, which continue to provide us with opportunities like this one.
Outside of the aforementioned UTSA victory, North Texas’ other victories occurred against Florida International (one of the worst teams in the FBS), UTEP (perhaps their second best win but not exactly a world-beater), Southern Miss (a dreg), Rice (another dreg and overtime was required), and Northwestern State (a FCS tune-up opponent). The Mean Green have feasted on marshmallows and playing a padded schedule has proven to be a costly endeavor when it comes time for bowl season. One could point to a number of overpriced teams this Bowl season that were heavily bet because of its misleading resume (Army, Old Dominion, App State to name a few) and North Texas absolutely fits right in.
Miami OH, though a MAC team, faced Minnesota (a B1G outfit who played tough on the road), Cincinnati (a College Football Playoff team), and Army in their out-of-conference schedule. Though they are 6-6, the Redhawks could easily be 9-3 had a few bounces gone their way. Miami lost by a combined four points in three of their defeats. One of these losses came against Kent State in overtime (which subsequently sent the Golden Flashes to the Mid-American Conference Championship). The Redhawks also own a 28-17 win over an 8-4 Central Michigan this season, which is somewhat noteworthy, as CMU is getting a lot of love early from the betting market as a significant underdog against Boise State. While CMU is perhaps not UTSA, the market views the Chips as a quality outfit. Bottom line, there is no reason to suspect Miami OH is not capable of producing a win and covering easily here against North Texas, as the Redhawks are the more battle-tested bunch that owns a deceiving record.
A 6-6 MAC squad isn't the most inspiring opponent for the market to get behind and when you add recency bias, deceiving records of both and a partisan crowd at this Texas venue, it's not hard to see the Redhawks showing up with their A-game and something to prove after having to hear how they don't really deserve a bid. If the Redhawks do manage to bring start-to-finish focus to the bowl prep, North Texas will be outmanned. There's a significant roster wide size and speed differential, and that means that with sufficient desire to win, Miami can frog-stomp this opponent.
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Miami OH -2 -106 (Risking 2.12 units - To Win: 2.00)