Our NCAAF Computer Picks are chosen using an algorithm that analyzes historical sports data across college football to you the bets that offer the best value bets to beat the betting sites. In this article, we’ll provide you with our top NCAAF Computer Picks for the bowl games on Friday, Dec. 20 between the Buffalo Bulls and Charlotte 49ers & Utah State Aggies and Kent State Golden Flashes.
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NCAAF Friday, Dec.20 Bowl Game Computer Picks
2019 Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl
Buffalo Bulls (-6.5) vs. Charlotte 49ers – Total: 51.5
Friday, December 20, 2019 – 2:00 p.m. EST
Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl Computer Pick: Buffalo to cover the spread
A pair of 7-5 teams will kick off the bowl season with a meeting at Thomas A. Robinson National Stadium, as the Buffalo Bulls face the Charlotte 49ers. Of course, neither team plays in a conference that is shown on national TV most of the season. However, we’re here to break it down and our betting pick is for Buffalo to cover the 6.5-point spread. Let’s take a look at the numbers to see why we’re going with the favorites.
Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl Betting Line: Buffalo vs. Charlotte
When the public doesn’t know much about either team, they latch on to the favorite. Neither team has ever won a bowl game before but, obviously, that is a trend that’ll get bucked on Friday. Nonetheless, we’re seeing 80 percent of public bets backing Buffalo in this one. Sometimes it’s dangerous to roll with a heavy public favorite like that, but we see the merit in doing so.
Buffalo Betting Form
Buffalo had the 123rd most difficult schedule in the country, with the most difficult matchups coming against Penn State (L 45-13) and Temple (W 38-22). They had Penn State on the ropes, leading 10-7 at halftime before getting boatraced in the second half. While the Bulls failed to cover the spread in their first three contests, they were 7-2 ATS over the last nine games. Buffalo won five of its last six games outright coming into this bowl game.
Buffalo’s offense has been rolling, scoring at least 43 points in four of the last five games. RB Jaret Patterson finished the regular season with a whopping 1,626 rushing yards and 17 TDs. That includes a 298-yard performance with 6 total TDs in the regular-season finale against Bowling Green. It was also the fifth straight game with at least 100+ rushing yards for Patterson, and the second consecutive game with at least 4 TDs.
When looking at the two teams, Buffalo clearly has a better defense than Charlotte. The Bulls are allowing 96 fewer total yards per game this season. Their true strength is defending the run, as they rank fourth in the nation with 95.3 yards per game allowed. In fact, Buffalo is only one of seven FBS programs allowing under 100 rushing yards per game on the ground this season.
Charlotte Betting Form
Charlotte had the 106th most difficult schedule in the country, some of that boosted by meetings with Appalachian State (L 56-41) and Clemson (L 52-10) – both of which came in September. The 49ers are on a five-game winning streak, with three of the last four coming by double-digits. After starting out the season 2-5 ATS, Charlotte has now covered four of the last five games.
QB Chris Reynolds leads the offense for Charlotte, with 3,123 total yards (2,366 passing, 757 rushing) and 27 total TDs (21 passing, 6 rushing). His has been impressive, leading the 49ers to the most rushing yards per game (213.3) and time of possession (32:25) in Conference USA.
DE Alex Highsmith is tied for the second-most sacks (14) in FBS this season. In the regular-season finale, he notched 4.5 sacks against Old Dominion. Highsmith’s role in this game will be particularly interesting, considering he’s going up against OT Evin Ksiezarczyk of Buffalo, who is one of the best in the nation. Not to mention, Buffalo’s offensive line only allowed a total of eight sacks the entire season, which is the second-lowest number in FBS this season.
Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl Computer Pick: Buffalo (-6.5)
All in all, Buffalo is a more well-rounded football team that will get it done on Friday. Sure, Charlotte can run the ball and control the clock. However, this is a solid Buffalo defensive unit that will make life difficult for them. Look for Patterson to have another big game to close out the season and lead the Bulls to victory.
2019 Tropical Smoothie Cafe Frisco Bowl
Utah State Aggies (-6.5) vs. Kent State Golden Flashes – Total: 67
Friday, December 20, 2019 – 7:30 p.m. EST
Tropical Smoothie Cafe Frisco Bowl Computer Pick: Utah State to cover the spread
The 7-5 Utah State Aggies will look to end their season on a positive note when they meet the 6-6 Kent State Golden Flashes. Both teams have high-powered offenses but we’ve got one particular side in mind. Our betting pick is for Utah State to cover the 6.5-point spread. Let’s look at some numbers to see why we’re going with the favorite in this game as well.
Tropical Smoothie Cafe Frisco Bowl Betting Line: Utah State vs. Kent State
With the spread opening at Utah State -8, it was natural to have some Kent State backing shortly afterward. However, the spread dropped down to Utah State -6.5 and this is the perfect time to jump in. The Aggies are 5-2 ATS as a favorite this season, so look for them to do it again. Getting this line at 6.5 gets us a much better route to victory.
Utah State Betting Form
Utah State had the 74th most difficult schedule in the country, with its most notable games coming against LSU (L 42-6) and Boise State (L 56-21). The Aggies have won and covered the spread in three of its last four games coming into the Frisco Bowl. Utah State was 7-5 ATS on the season, the same as its overall record.
QB Jordan Love has 3,085 passing yards at 17 TDs this season. Those probably aren’t the type of numbers an NFL prospect wants leaving school. It’s unfortunate because he still does have one year of eligibility left, and he could probably use it. Nonetheless, Love has decided to use this game as a showcase for the NFL decision-makers. He’ll be looking to find WR Siaosi Mariner more than a few times in this game. He has 56 catches for 874 yards and 8 TDs, and also one catch of at least 25 yards in 10 games this season.
The Golden Flashes allowed the fourth-most rushing yards per game (248.6), so it’d behoove Utah State to get that aspect of the offense going.
Kent State Betting Form
Kent State had the 92nd most difficult schedule in the country this season, with its most notable games coming against Auburn (L 55-16) and Wisconsin (L 48-0). The Golden Flashes have won each of their last three games, covering the spread in four straight and six of the last seven. Overall, Kent State was 8-4 ATS on the season.
QB Dustin Crum is the Golden Flashes offense, as he even leads the team in rushing yards (560). His 2,333 passing yards weren’t particularly impressive, but Crum did have a solid 18 TD-2 INT mark on the season. If Kent State can’t get anything going on the ground, it’ll force them to be one dimensional against a Utah State defense that forced 23 turnovers this season.
Tropical Smoothie Cafe Frisco Bowl Computer Pick: Utah State (-6.5)
This is a big spot for Love and the Aggies with more at stake than a lot of people realize. Love is looking to improve his NFL Draft stock and we could certainly argue that Utah State underperformed this season. Look for them to take their frustrations out on a Kent State team that just simply hasn’t played well in big games.