Conference USA: Western KY & Southern Miss. Lock 'Over' 73 as Your College Football Pick

Joe Catalano

Wednesday, December 2, 2015 5:44 PM GMT

Wednesday, Dec. 2, 2015 5:44 PM GMT

Conference USA doesn't get a lot of hype with college football picks, but the best of the best square off against eachother this week as Southern Miss faces Western Kentucky.

Kickoff is set for Saturday, December 5th at Noon EST at the Houchen Industries L.T. Smith Stadium in Bowling Green, Kentucky. According to 5Dimes, the Hilltoppers are a 7.5 point betting favorite and the total for the game is listed at 72 points.

The Hilltoppers have really held down their opposition defensively as they've won 4 consecutive games and 8 out of their last 9 games. Their one loss was a 48-20 beating at the hands of the LSU Tigers, but that's to be expected as the SEC Conference is dominant in college football.

 

No Doubt About Doughty
We have to remember the level of opponent that Western Kentcuky starting quarterback, Brandon Doughty faces, but Doughty has been a beast this season. He boasts a 180.2 quarterback rating off of 4184 yards passing with 42 TD and 6 INT. It doesn't get better than that and for those of you who don't know, now you know why the total is so high in this game.

Doughty has 5 targets to throw to who have 500 yards receiving or more, led by his favorite target, wide receiver, Taywan Taylor. For the seaon, Taylor lead Western Kentucky with 71 receptions, 1198 yards, and 15 TD. Although Taylor has a touchdown in 10 out of his last 11 games, he's failed to eclipse the 100 yard mark in 3 out of his last 4 games. That said, I wouldn't be concerned as this team contains great depth and Doughty is coming off of a 370 yard, 5 TD passing performance in a 49-28 win over Marshall. This is a player that's thrown for over 10000 yards in his career. 

Along with the passing game, the Hilltoppers have 2 running backs in Anthony Wales and D'Andre Ferby, who have accounted for almost 1500 yards and 16 TD's combined. This team is a scoring machine. Their primary goal is to protect the quarterback as he's "All-World".

Let's rememeber, these are two teams that average over 40 points per game and 500 yards of total offense. Their defenses are actually respectable, but that's because they're playing much inferior teams in their conference.

 

Six Game Winning Streak On the Line For Southern Miss
Where the Golden Eagles are concerned, they have fed off of their schedule as they've won 6 games in a row. In Conference USA, this will be their ulitmate test. Can they contain Brandon Doughty or match his offensive output?

In their last 3 games, the Golden Eagles have outscored their opponents 179-65. These are simply staggering numbers. They also have a quarterback in Nick Mullens out of the famed Hoover High in Alabama, that can match Doughty pass for pass as he's thrown for nearly 9000 yards in his career and he still has a year remaining of eligibility.

For the season, Mullens has thrown for 3964 yards with 35 TD and 9 INT. At 6 foot 1, he's a typical Drew Brees; A shorter quarterback with a rifle for an arm. 

 

Offense Galore
Where Mullens is concerned, he has a similar setup as Doughty, but a better running game as the Golden Eagles have nearly 2 -1000 yard rushers in Jalen Richard and Ito Smith and 3 receivers who have caught for over 700 yards in Michael Thomas (1111 yards, 11 TD), Casey Martin (819 yards, 7 TD), and D.J. Thompson (729 yards, 6 TD).

There is no LSU to be faced in this game and I expect these teams to do what they do best; score points. The 72 points might seem intimidating, but the over is the obvious play.

College Football Pick: Over 73 at Pinnacle

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