College Football Picks: Underrated Defenses Suggest That Toledo & Temple Will Go 'Under' 51.5 in Boca Raton Bowl

Ross Benjamin

Saturday, December 12, 2015 10:22 PM GMT

Saturday, Dec. 12, 2015 10:22 PM GMT

Our handicapping professional does an early breakdown of the Boca Raton Bowl matchup between Toledo and Temple. Go inside to find out what his college football pick is and exactly why he’s opted for it.

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College Football Pick: Under 51.5
Best Line Offered: at The Greek

 

Boca Raton Bowl
Toledo (9-2) and Temple (10-3) will meet in what appears to be a very intriguing Boca Raton Bowl matchup on Tuesday 12/22. The opening kickoff at Florida Atlantic Stadium is slated for 7:00 PM ET. Current college football odds at The Greek indicate that Temple is a 1.0 point favorite, and the posted total is 51.5. These teams last met in 2011 when Temple was a member of the Mid America Conference at that time, and Toledo came away with a 36-13 home win.

 

Rockets are Sneaky Good
Toledo began the season by going 7-0, and was ranked as high as #21 in the AP poll. Then they suffered a disappointing 37-32 home loss to Northern Illinois, and were upset by Western Michigan 35-30 as a 7.5 point home favorite in their regular season finale. However, they do own wins over pair of “Power Five Conference” teams. In their season opener they shocked Arkansas 16-12 as a massive 23.0 point road underdog, and then the following week defeated Iowa State 30-23 at home. They also easily defeated eventual MAC champion Bowling Green University 44-28 as an 8.0 point road underdog. This is a Rockets team that won’t be in awe of the situation or environment.

 

Great Year for Owls
Temple had a stellar 10-2 regular season, including a pair of decisive wins over pretty decent opponents in Penn State (7-5) and Memphis (9-3). They also gave #8 Notre Dame all they can handle during a narrow 24-20 loss, and they covered with relative ease as a 12.0 point home underdog. The Owls came up short during a 24-13 loss to Houston in the AAC Championship Game. Temple will be facing a Toledo team that averages 35.3 points per game. During the past two seasons, Temple has gone a perfect 7-0 under the total versus opponents that average 31.0 or more points per outing. Those contests averaged only a combined 34.4 points scored per game.

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Final Thoughts and Picks
Although Toledo gets a lot of recognition for a potent offensive attack, their defense isn’t too shabby as well. The Rockets are allowing just 21.1 points per game, and they’ve gone 8-3 under the total in 2015. Temple has gone 8-5 under the total this season, and they’re allowing just 19.2 points per game. This has all the earmarks of a closely contested low scoring type of game. One of my college football picks will follow that exact logic.

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