The New Mexico Lobos are seeking revenge when visiting the UNLV Rebels Friday night. Here are our top picks for the Week 5 UNLV-New Mexico matchup.
UNLV paid a visit to New Mexico last week and came away with a 31-17 win as a 2.5-point underdog. The Lobos enter this season's clash off of an ugly 38-0 loss to LSU and dropped to 2-2 for the season.
The Rebels are 3-1 for the season and are coming off back-to-back wins over North Texas and Utah State.
New Mexico vs. UNLV Game Info
Date: Friday, Sept. 30, 11 p.m. ET
Location: Allegiant Stadium, Paradise, NV
New Mexico vs. UNLV Odds
New Mexico vs. UNLV Odds Analysis
There is modest betting support for New Mexico with 59% of the tickets and 51% of the cash. This has helped dropped the spread from UNLV -16.5 to -13.5
There's reverse line movement on the total with 82% of the tickets and 65% of the handle backing the Over. The line has still dropped from a consensus opening line of 45.5 to 44 as of Friday morning.
New Mexico vs. UNLV Picks
New Mexico vs. UNLV ATS Pick
UNLV -14 (-110) ★★
A quick look back on the odds for last year’s head-to-head matchup in Albuquerque reflects UNLV’s vastly improved power rating. The Rebels ultimately won by two touchdowns as 1-point underdogs on the road. In the span of less than a year, UNLV is now laying two touchdowns or more ahead of Friday’s rematch.
Needless to say, while New Mexico is better than a year ago, the level of improvement comes nowhere close to matching that of the Rebels. Optimism was high right out of the gates as UNLV welcomed back a dozen starters from a team that showed consistent improvement in the second half of last season. Through four weeks, those preseason expectations have been justified.
It’s clear that two-plus years of continuity in head coach Marcus Arroyo’s offensive system is paying dividends for UNLV. Quarterback Doug Brumfield won the starting job and has been extremely efficient. While running back Aidan Robbins might not be on the same level as the departed Charles Williams, he has certainly been productive running behind an experienced offensive line.
With the Mountain West Conference appearing to be down this year, there’s a chance that UNLV can make some real noise. Last week’s double-digit road win over Utah State proved as much. The Lobos have shown no consistency on offense whatsoever through four games, suggesting that it will be difficult for UNM to keep pace with the Rebels on the scoreboard.
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New Mexico vs. UNLV O/U Pick
Over 43 (-107) ★★
Despite the line move favoring the Under, buying back in the opposite direction on the adjusted total of 43 is much more appealing at this juncture. Although this goes against the identity of New Mexico in particular, it is also an indirect vote of confidence in what UNLV is capable of offensively.
In two home games to date, the Rebels surpassed the 50-point threshold both times. Granted, those contests came against a bad FCS opponent and a defense-optional North Texas outfit. However, New Mexico also gave up 31 points at home to Boise State. In reality, the gap between the Broncos and UNLV offensively this season is really not that large.
The Rebels and Lobos come into this game ranked second and third in all of FBS with regard to average turnover margin. Takeaways have keyed an impressive win for each team this season. New Mexico forced seven against UTEP, and UNLV came up with six against Utah State.
If one or both defenses can generate more takeaways on Friday night, this could lead to a rise in scoring if the offenses are able to capitalize on short fields.
New Mexico vs. UNLV Prop Pick
New Mexico team total between 11-20 points (+155) ★★★
In four games this season, New Mexico has twice surpassed the 20-point mark. However, dating back to the start of last season, a span that includes 16 games played, the Lobos have scored more than 17 points on only four occasions. Two of those were against FCS-level competition. A third came early last year against FBS bottom-feeder, New Mexico State.
Long story short, the Lobos remain extremely challenged offensively. If not for UTEP committing seven turnovers, New Mexico would have almost certainly failed to score 27 points in that Week 3 win. The addition of Kansas transfer Miles Kendrick at quarterback has failed to jumpstart the UNM offense.
As for Friday’s contest, sportsbooks are listing the Lobos’ team total line at 13.5. The juice on the Over makes sense given that UNLV’s defense isn’t exactly a juggernaut. With New Mexico most likely to land between 14 and 20 points, this +155 scoring band at PointsBet makes for a solid wager.
Where to Bet on New Mexico vs. UNLV Picks
New Mexico-UNLV picks made 9/28/2022 at 2:23 p.m. ET