Bowling Green @


Sat, Sep 25
9:00 AM Pacific
Rotation: 313
Odds: Minnesota -31, Total: 51

Game Analysis

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1-Star Best Bet – Minnesota TT Under (41 -115)

Alternate play is Bowling Green +31 (+30 or more)

MINNESOTA (-31)  34   Bowling Green  9

After years of mediocre or worse offensive units, Minnesota had a breakthrough season on that side of the ball in 2019 with Tanner Morgan putting up big pass numbers to compliment a good rushing attack. The coordinator of that offense was lured away after that season and Minnesota’s offense was only 0.3 yards per play better than average in 2020 under a pair of new offensive coordinators. Things haven’t improved this season, as the Gophers have averaged just 5.6 yards per play and rate at 0.2 yppl worse than average. All Big-10 RB Mohamed Ibrahim is out for the season after rushing for 163 yards in the opener against Ohio State and his replacement has averaged a sub-par 4.8 ypr. Getting WR Chris Autman-Bell back last week (he missed the first 2 games) certainly helped and I expect the pass attack to be 0.7 yards per pass play better than average going forward (+0.3 yppp last year and +0.2 yppp so far this season) while the rushing attack remains about average.

The line on this game reflects the believe that Bowling Green is still Bowling Green. However, that is not the case. Last year’s team was 0-5 and was outscored by an average of 11.4 to 45.0 but quarterback Matt McDonald was playing hurt and he’s improved after having surgery to repair his throwing shoulder. McDonald completed just 43.9% of his passes last season but he’s completed 70 of 98 (71.4%) of his throws this season. The Falcons still aren’t scoring many points because they can’t run the ball (3.1 yprp) and McDonald has averaged just 6.3 yards per pass play because most of his completions are short passes. Minnesota’s defense still gives up too many big plays but they shutout Colorado last week and Bowling Green is averaging just 17.3 points per game and probably won’t score too many here.

The biggest improvement for the Falcons has been their defense. BG has yielded only 23.3 points per game and only 4.5 yards per play to a trio of teams that would combine to average 4.9 yppl against an average FBS defense. The 38 points that they gave up to Tennessee in their opener is misleading, as the Volunteers managed just 5.4 yppl in that game while the Falcons’ stingy pass defense allowed only 4.7 yards per pass play. Bowling Green’s revamped secondary has allowed only 55.1% completions and they are keeping opponents in front of them (just 9.9 yards per completion allowed). Overall, the Falcons’ pass defense has allowed just 4.6 yards per pass play to teams that would combine to average 5.5 yppp against an average defensive team. Minnesota is a run-heavy team but BG has been better than average defending the run too and the Falcons don’t figure to give up more than 35 points in this game.

Bowling Green’s games have all gone under the total by an average of 11 points per game and my model likes this game under too. However, all of the value I see on the under is on the projection for Minnesota’s offense being much less than the 41 points the market has them expected to score.

I’ll play Minnesota’s Team Total Under 41 (at 40 or more) for a 1-Star Best Bet.

  • Team Stats
  • Game Log
  • Bowling Green
  • Minnesota


  • Run Plays 24.3 42.0
  • Run Yards 76.7 187.3
  • YPRP 3.1 4.5


  • Pass Comp 23.3 18.0
  • Pass Att 33.0 32.7
  • Comp % 70.7% 55.1%
  • Pass Yards 238.3 177.7
  • Sacks 2.3 2.7
  • Sack Yards 18.7 15.0
  • Sack % 6.6% 7.6%
  • Pass Plays 35.3 35.3
  • Net Pass Yards 219.7 162.7
  • YPPP 6.2 4.6


  • Total Plays 59.7 77.3
  • Total Yards 296.3 350.0
  • YPPL 5.0 4.5


  • Int 0.7 1.0
  • Int % 2.0% 3.1%
  • Fumbles 0.3 0.7
  • Turnovers 1.0 1.7
  • Points 17.3 23.3
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