NCAAF: Tuesday, January 1st, 2019 at 1 pm (University of Phoenix Stadium)
Line: LSU -7.5
Free ESPN NCAAF Pick LSU Tigers vs. UCF Knights
Today’s New Years Day features one of the more interesting bowl games between the LSU Tigers and the UCF Knights in the Fiesta Bowl.
UCF has gone undefeated again and would love to prove that they should be mentioned in the same breath as the top programs in the country. They have gone undefeated in the regular season for the last three years and they want some respect and beating a powerhouse program such as LSU would do just that.
For the season, UCF is 44.2 ppg on 545.4 total yards per game (268.9 passing yds/g; 276.5 rushing yds/g) while holding their opponents to an average of 21.3 ppg on 423.6 total yards per game (196.2 passing yds/g; 227.4 rushing yds/g). The Knights have forced their opponents into committing 26 turnovers on the season and have an overall turnover margin of +14. The Knights did suffer a major blow when starting QB McKenzie Milton who had completed 59.2% of his passes for 25 TD & 6 INT while averaging 266.3 passing yards a game, went down with a knee injury. His back up, freshman Darriel Mack Jr. looked outstanding in his first career start agianst Memphis as he completed 19 of 27 passes for 348 passing yards & 2 TD while also adding 59 yards & 4 TD’s on the ground.
As for LSU, they finished their regular season with a tough 74-72 7 OT loss against Texas A&M but overall they had a very impressive year, highlighted by their win against Georgia. On the season, LSU is averaging 31.8 ppg on 389.3 total yards per game (214.7 passing yds/g; 174.7 rushing yds/g). Offensively, LSU has been led by the RB duo of Nick Brossette (17.6 att/g; 76.8 yds/g; 14 TD) & Clyde Edwards-Helaire (11.3 att/g; 52.2 yds/g; 7 TD). QB Joe Burrow has completed 57.4% of his passes for 12 TD & 4 INT while averaging 208.3 passing yards per game.
On defense, LSU is holding their opponents to an average of 20.9 ppg on 346.1 total yards per game (206.8 passing yds/g; 139.3 rushing yds/g). The Tigers forced 23 turnovers on the season and finished their regular season with a turnover margin of +12. This should be a very exciting game.
11-5 ATS in their last 16 games on grass
2-5 ATS in their last 7 Bowl games
4-0 ATS vs. a team with a winning record
13-5-1 ATS in their last 19 games following an ATS win
Free NCAAF Prediction LSU Tigers vs UCF Knights
UCF is a great football team and wants to be recognized as such. They have put together an incredible 25-game winning streak, however, at the same time, this year’s version of the Knights in my opinion is just not as good as what we saw last season especially without Milton behind center. LSU is a solid team who I think will be able to have their way in the running game against the Knights defense and as I think the LSU defense will be able to slow down the UCF offense led by an unexperienced freshman QB. As much as UCF’s QB situation makes me nervous, I like them to cover the 7.5 even if I think LSU wins the game.
The Pick: UCF +7.5