College Football Picks: Fresno State vs. Hawaii

Ross Benjamin

Friday, September 27, 2013 1:43 PM GMT

Friday, Sep. 27, 2013 1:43 PM GMT

Free NCAAF picks for the final Week 5 matchup between the Fresno State Bulldogs and the Hawaii Warriore. We examine the current betting lines, hoping to find a betting edge.

The Fresno St. Bulldogs leave the main land for a Mountain West Conference contest versus the Hawaii Warriors. According to current college football odds, Fresno St. is an 18.5-point road favorite in this contest. The Bulldogs enter this contest with a perfect 3-0 record and ranked #23 in the country entering the week. Hawaii is off to a disappointing 0-3 start to the season.

Take a look at our College Football Picks: Opening Odds Report for Week 4.

Will the Bulldogs Be Flat? 

Fresno St. comes off a monumental win versus their long time nemesis Boise St. snapping a personal 7-game losing streak versus the Broncos. The win also elevated Fresno into the top 25, and has them dreaming of being a “BCS Bowl Buster”. Looking at the rest of the schedule it’s not in the least bit unconceivable that they can run the table. However, this also looks to be a big time danger spot for the road favorite. Coming off the biggest win in the program’s history since the early days of Pat Hill’s tenure, facing a winless opponent, and then traveling to a vacation paradise to play can cause any team to be in a very vulnerable position.

In addition, this will be their first road game of the season after opening the year with 3 home tilts. The Fresno St. superb offensive production has covered up the flaws of their defense. The Bulldogs stop unit is allowing an average of 38.7 points and 506.7 yards per game. The shining star for Fresno St. has been senior quarterback Derek Carr. Carr has thrown for 1121 yards good for 12 touchdown passes versus just 1 pick in the first 3 games. His play has elevated him into a possible Heisman Trophy candidate.

The Aftermath of June Jones Departure

The Hawaii football program has been in a steady decline since former head coach June Jones left to take the job at SMU in 2008. Since Jones left the Warriors have gone just 31-36 including a dismal 3-16 over their last 19-games. In little over a 10-year stretch between 201 and 2011, Hawaii was a superb 64-17 at home. Since then they’ve lost 8 of their last 11 at home with their wins coming versus Lamar, UNLV, and South Alabama. They’re off to a terrible 0-3 start this season but did manage to cover in 2 of those contests. All 3 games have gone under the total.

The Hawaii offense, which once one of the most feared attacks in college football, has managed just 14-points or less in each of their first 3-games. Although the numbers don’t indicate so, the defense has held their own, but has just succumbed to being on the field too much. Opponents have held the ball an average of 34:36 compared to 26:24 for Hawaii so far in 2013. That’s a sure recipe to having a worn out defense by the middle of the season if that stat doesn’t get turned around in an imminent manner.

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Final Analysis

The Hawaii defense has played well enough to keep the team somewhat competitive. Although the offense has struggled they will be facing a Fresno defense that’s given up a lot of points and yards in 2013. Combine those factors what appears to be a flat spot for the Bulldogs, especially as a double-digit road favorite, then the home underdog is worth a small lean with your college football picks.

Free Pick: Hawaii +18.5 over Fresno St

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