Cincinnati (10-2) vs. Virginia Tech (6-6)
College Football: 2018 Military Bowl, December 31,2018 at 12pm
Line and Odds: Cincinnati -4.5
Virginia Tech Hokies vs Cincinnati Bearcats Military Bowl
On December 31, 2018 the Cincinnati Bearcats will be competing against the Virginia Tech Hokies in the 11th edition of the Military Bowl. The game is sponsored by defense contractor Northrop Grummman. The Bearcats come into the bowl game with a 10-2 record while the Hokies on the other hand carry a 6-6 record coming into the match-up. This will not be the first time these 2 teams have played each other in the Military bowl, in 2014 Virginia Tech took home the hardware defeating Cincinnati 33-17. Four years later the two teams face-off again but the narrative is completely different this year.
Virginia Tech Hokies
Virginia Tech received and accepted a bid to the Military Bowl on December 2.The Hokies enter the bowl with a 6–6 record (4–4 in conference). After starting the season 4–2, the Hokies lost four games in a row, then finished with two wins, giving them the six wins needed for bowl eligibility. This is Virginia Tech’s 26th consecutive bowl appearance, having played in a bowl every season since the 1993 Independence Bowl.
Cincinnati received and accepted a bid to the Military Bowl on December 2.The Bearcats enter the bowl with a 10–2 record (6–2 in conference).
Three Things to know before betting on Virginia Tech or Cincinnati
1. Virginia Tech barley made it to a bowl game this year. After loosing to Old Dominion 49-35 in a game that had Virginia Tech as 28-point favorites to win and loosing their starting quarterback Josh Jackson for the season in that game, Virginia Tech’s season began to spiral out of control. Though Virginia Tech did win 6 games this year, even those wins seemed like a gift from above due to the fact that the Hokies where out gained 2.0 yards per play by UNC in October, yet Virginia Tech came out on top with a game winning field goal. After loosing 4 games straight, the Hokies needed to win the final 2 games of the season to reach .500 and appear in a bowl game. Virginia Tech ended the season 5-7 against the spread, with three of those ATS wins coming in the first four games.
2. After suffering a career ending leg injury in one of the biggest upsets in college football history, Josh Jackson was replaced with Ryan willis who surprisingly step up to the plate and preformed. Willis ended the season with 22 touchdowns and only 8 interceptions. Passing plays accounted for 61.7% of Virginia Tech’s total yardage this season, ranking 41st overall in the FBS. I digress to say that that makes Cincinnati a very difficult match-up. The Bearcats finished seventh in the country in scoring defense, only allowing 16.1 points per game but the pass defense of the Bearcats will give Virginia Tech a run for their money. Cincinnati has only allowed teams to complete around 47.3% of their passes which is the lowest opposing completion percentage in the country. The Hokies do not the tools to transition to a run-heavy offense and, even if they did, Cincinnati is dominant in that aspect as well. The Bearcats allowed only 3.19 yards per carry to opposing rushers, which is ninth-best in the country.
3. Even though Cincinnati is known for its defense, their offense is pretty impressive as well. Desmond Ridder will be the quarterback under center for the Bearcats in the 2018 Military bowl and coming into the game he averages 7.8 yards per passing attempt which is fourth in the ACC. Ridder will be handing the ball off to sophomore running back Michael Warren III who was a second-team all-conference selection after rushing for more than 1.100 yards. Going up against a rather weak Virginia Tech defense, trends suggest that Cincy is in a great spot to cover the spread in the Military Bowl. Over the past 10 seasons, favorites of 3.5 to 10 points that are averaging at least 440 yards per game and coming off a performance in which they averaged at least 6.75 yards per play are 33-8 against the spread in games played in the second half of the season against teams allowing between 390 and 440 yards per game.
Free Cover the spread 365 Military Bowl Predictions
After looking over both teams 2018 portfolio I would place my bet on the Bearcats due to the lack of star power on the end of Virginia Tech and there sum what average defense. Virginia Tech will have their hands full with Cincy and the Military Bowl might get out of hand this year due to the lopsided sum of stats between the two teams.