Grab a More Talented Miami (FL) - 4.5 vs. Cincinnati with your College Football Picks

Doug Upstone

Monday, September 28, 2015 4:27 PM UTC

Monday, Sep. 28, 2015 4:27 PM UTC

This nonconference clash is about building. It is clear one team smells something good brewing and wants to continue in that direction and the college football odds show them as favorites.

The other squad is already 0-2 in conference action and could very well just be playing to have a winning season, which would be a disappointment based on preseason expectations.

It does seem fairly obvious Miami Florida is the better team in their matchup with Cincinnati, but do the Hurricanes have what it takes to move to 4-0 and 3-0-1 ATS, based on their recent history and having Florida State on deck? And what about the Bearcats, does Tommy Tuberville and his coaches have to reevaluate team goals having lost twice already in AAC action? These are all elements football handicappers and those generating college football picks have to ponder.


When Miami-Fl. Has the Ball
Miami was off last Saturday and has not played since nearly blowing game to Nebraska. The Hurricanes had a 23-point lead over the Cornhuskers with just over 11 minutes left in the game and the offense was clicking behind quarterback Brad Kaaya. The Canes took full advantage of a porous Nebraska secondary and will face one that also has holes Kaaya can expose. One area coach Al Golden might want to do is feed running backs Joseph Yearby and Mark Walton more, to keep the offense balanced and if needed, run the clock in the fourth quarter on the road, something they failed to do against Nebraska.


When Cincinnati Has the Ball
It is hard to imagine QB Hayden Moore stepped in for injured Gunner Kiel and threw the ball 53 times, completing 31, for 557 yards and four touchdowns and still lost. Yet Cincinnati did 53-46 and has to move on. Coach Tuberville has stated Kiel would not be ruled out as a starter but how he left the field in Memphis and being injured twice already, his playing seems foolhardy.

The Bearcats offense does great work in using crossing routes and has several receiving options in Max Morrison, Chris Moore and Shaq Washington. Cincy has been committing too many turnovers which has played into their 2-2 record and 1-3 ATS record.


What the Hurricanes Have to do on Defense
The Miami defense did a fairly good job against Nebraska for three quarters in keeping the pressure on the quarterback. The defense likes to play up the field, but will run out of assignment lanes and be undisciplined, something that has been a part of the Golden era. If this happens at Nippert Stadium, it will the fourth quarter of the last game for all 60 minutes.


What the Bearcats Have to do on Defense
The offense has not helped the Cincinnati defense in placing them in ticklish situations, but they have to help themselves also. If you are placing sports picks, hard to like a team surrendering 32.5 points a game. A telling stat about the Bearcats ineffectiveness is they are 115th in the country in yards per point at 12.0, which proves they are not shutting down teams at all, because they are actually 78th in total defense at 390 yards per game allowed. Another such performance and Cincy loses again.


Oddsmakers Numbers and Outcome
The sportsbooks we checked including Heritage, all had Miami at -4.5 for college football odds as openers. The Hurricanes have more talent across the board and team speed which could definitely be a difference-maker.

On the surface, the home underdog is inviting and Cincinnati certainly has the perimeter weapons to compete and on national stage playing at home against an ACC opponent, it is inviting to take a team that is 19-8 ATS catching single digits since 2005.

However, the Bearcats turnovers have been plentiful and if the Miami defense is capable of anything, it is being disruptive, which could turn the game in their favor. With the 'U' 6-3 ATS as road favorites in their last nine, for this ESPN contest, a nod to Miami.

College Football Pick: Miami Florida  -4.5 at Pinnacle

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