(6) Houston @


Thu, Sep 15
4:30 PM Pacific
Rotation: 104
Odds: Cincinnati +7, Total: 64.5

Game Analysis

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Houston (-7)  30   CINCINNATI  27

I thought Houston was overrated coming into the season and their upset win over Oklahoma didn’t change my opinion much. After all, the Cougars were outgained 5.1 yards per play to 6.7 yppl by the Sooners in that game. Houston is a good team but last season the Cougars were just 0.3 yppl better than average overall, rating as +0.3 yppl on offense (6.2 yppl against FBS teams that would allow 5.9 yppl to an average team) and average on defense (5.5 yppl allowed to teams that would combine to average 5.5 yppl against an average defense). What made Houston good last season was their ridiculous +21 turnover margin in those 13 games against FBS opponents. Houston is a better team this season (the offense is about the same but I rate their defense at 0.5 yppl better than average) but they’re not likely to be +1.6 in turnover margin per game again.

I also pegged Cincinnati as an overrated team heading into this season and the Bearcats have turned in two unimpressive performances so far. Scoring only 28 points and averaging 5.9 yards per play against UT Martin in their opener raised questions about the new offense and Cincy’s 38-20 win at Purdue last week was very misleading. The Bearcats only outgained Purdue 515 yards at 6.8 yards per play to 504 yards at 6.2 yppl but won by 18 because of a +5 in turnover margin, which is very random. Cincinnati is not likely to be positive in turnovers against Houston and thus far the Bearcats have been a couple of points worse than average from the line of scrimmage when adjusting for their schedule.

My ratings actually favor Houston by 8 ½ points in this game (with a total of just 57 points) but Cincinnati is in a very good situation tonight. Teams with a winning record and off 2 wins or more are good bets as home underdogs against a visiting team also on a winning streak and coming off a blowout win. In fact, teams with a greater than .500 record on a winning streak are 70-35 ATS as a home underdog of 5 points or more against a team coming off 2 or more wins and a win of more than 28 points the previous week.

I’ll lean with Cincinnati based on that trend and I also like the under.

  • Team Stats
  • Game Log
  • Houston
  • Cincinnati


  • Run Plays 40.5 21.3
  • Run Yards 162.8 52.5
  • YPRP 4.3 3.5


  • Pass Comp 28.0 20.5
  • Pass Att 39.3 35.5
  • Comp % 71.3% 57.7%
  • Pass Yards 348.0 245.8
  • Sacks 2.3 3.8
  • Sack Yards 13.0 21.0
  • Sack % 5.4% 9.6%
  • Pass Plays 41.5 39.3
  • Net Pass Yards 335.0 224.8
  • YPPP 8.1 5.7


  • Total Plays 82.0 60.5
  • Total Yards 510.8 298.3
  • YPPL 6.2 4.9


  • Int 0.5 1.0
  • Int % 1.3% 2.8%
  • Fumbles 0.5 0.5
  • Turnovers 1.0 1.5
  • Points 44.2 11.2
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