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#171 Cincinnati at #172 Houston
When and where: Oct. 12, 2019. TDECU Stadium, Houston, TX, 8 p.m.
Cincinnati is riding a three-game winning streak, including a big 27-24 win over 18th-ranked UCF last week. This week, the Bearcats (4-1, 1-0) hit the road to face Houston (2-3, 0-1), which has lost two of its past three games. After beating UCF, Cincinnati has moved into 25th in the Associated Press poll.
Bearcats looking to continue momentum
The Bearcats are riding high after their first win over UCF since 2015. In fact, UCF had blown out Cincinnati, 51-23 and 38-13, the last two times they had played. This week, they travel to Houston, where they haven’t had much success in the past. The Cougars lead the all-time series, 15-10, but are also 10-4 in games played in Houston.
The Bearcats have a potent offense, averaging 27.6 points per game this season, led by running back Michael Warren II, who is averaging 4.7 yards per carry with four touchdowns on the season. Quarterback Desmond Ridder has averaged 192.8 yards per game and has thrown for 10 touchdowns.
TD ❌ TD ❌ TD— Cincinnati Football (@GoBearcatsFB) October 2, 2019
How could we pick just one?! @ajpierce00, @BrunoL87, and @MichaelKopay39 all registered their first career touchdowns on Saturday night - and we have a feeling there's more to come... #Bearcats | #TouchdownTuesday pic.twitter.com/jBCZuellgf
On defense, the Bearcats are giving up 21.4 points per game and are ranked 33rd nationally. Darrick Forrest leads the team with 42 tackles and Michael Pitts has recorded four sacks and seven tackles for loss.
Cougars needs a victory
The Cougars are coming off a bye week, having last played Sept. 28 in a 46-25 win at North Texas. They are 2-3 overall, but the losses have come at Oklahoma, at home against Washington State and at American Conference foe Tulane. Houston sits in last place currently in the AAC West Division.
Sophomore quarterback Clayton Tune makes his third career start and second of the season after taking over for senior D’Eriq King, who decided to redshirt. Against North Texas, Tune coupled 16 of 20 passes and also rushed for 100 yards.
Tune takes over a strong offense that is ranked 39th nationally while averaging 33.8 points per game. Unfortunately, the Cougars defense has given up 32 points per game and is ranked 105th.
.@UHCougarFB's D'Eriq King now has a pass TD and rush TD in 15 straight games, breaking Tim Tebow's previous record (14) for the longest streak in FBS history.— ESPN College Football (@ESPNCFB) September 20, 2019
No other player has an active streak longer than 3 games. pic.twitter.com/gDhbXaPmjj
“They're pretty good, and they're ranked,” said Houston coach Dana Holgorsen. “They're probably the best defensive team that we've played all year. They're well coached, they have great players and they play hard. They shut down Central Florida, which no one has done in the past couple of years, and their only loss has been Ohio State. We've got a lot on our plate, and the health of our football team is just one of them.”
- Cougars are 1-4 ATS in their last five conference games
- Cougars are 1-4 ATS in their last five games following a bye week
- Cougars are 1-5 ATS in their last five games against a team with a winning record
- Bearcats are 7-1 ATS in their last seven games after gaining less than 170 yards passing in their previous game
- Bearcats are 5-1 ATS in their last six games against a team with a losing record
- Bearcats are 4-1 ATS in their last five games overall
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
The Cougars are a big home dog, but they have struggled against good teams this season. They gave up 49 points against Oklahoma and 31 against Washington State. And Cincinnati has proven to be a good team this season, with a home win against ranked UCF and also beating UCLA.
The Bearcats defense has been especially tough in the third quarter, giving up only 17 points through its first five games. In their four wins, Cincinnati has limited its opponents to only 16.2 points per game.
Cincinnati should have the offense to score on the shaky Houston defense and their defense should be able to hold off a good Cougar offense enough to cover the line.
Take Cincinnati -7.5
Prediction: Cincinnati -7.5
Full-Game Total Pick
Both Cincinnati and Houston have capable offenses, as the Cougars are ranked 39th overall nationally and the Bearcats 77th. But only one team has a decent defense, with Cincinnati ranked 39th nationally.
Cougars’ games at home have gone over six of their past seven times. The Houston defense will give up points to the battle-tested Bearcats, and even if they don’t score a lot of points themselves, they have the capability of getting into the 20s themselves.
Houston has been strong at home, having won four straight home conference openers inside TDECU Stadium and have scored 35-plus points per game in this span.
Take Over 55
Prediction: Total Over 55