Nevada (12-1, -8) vs. Boston College (7-5)
The nation’s third best rushing attack meets the nation’s best rushing defense in tonight’s Kraft Hunger Bowl. Nevada averages 305.9 yards per game on the ground while Boston College allows only 80.9 yards per game on the ground.
The rushing battle is really the only one that matters – Boston College’s offense is somewhere between pretty bad and downright awful, so their ability to compete in this game will be entirely contingent on their ability to stop Nevada’s rushing attack. The Eagles average only 18.9 points per game and their season-high against an FBS team is the 26 they put up against 5-7 MAC team Kent State. They have not overcome a deficit of more than seven points in any of their seven wins. If Nevada is able to run on the Eagles early, it’s game over.
The most outrageous yet intriguing storyline in this game has been the fluctuations on the spread. The game opened with Nevada as 9.5 point favorites and quickly jumped to 10.5 when the public bets came in on Nevada. 70% of the public bets have come in on the Wolf Pack. Yet the line has dropped all the way down to 7.5. This means that some sharps are betting large amounts on the Eagles. Conspiracy theorists have jumped all over this screaming that the fix is in.
This works out pretty well for me: I’m going with Nevada to win because I don’t think that Boston College has seen a rushing attack as good as the Wolf Pack’s this season. The pistol offense isn’t as scary if you have six weeks to prepare for it, but the Eagles are only going to be able to stop it so many times. Plus, if I’m wrong about this, I’ll just join the conspiracy theorists and scream that the fix was in. Nevada wins 31-10.