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Rutgers Scarlet Knights vs. Houston Cougars Pick-Odds-Prediction 10/26/13

Houston Cougars (5-1) at Rutgers Scarlet Knights (4-2)

NCAAF Football: Saturday, October 26, 2013 at 12:00 pm (High Point Solutions Stadium)

The Line: Rutgers Scarlet Knights -9.5 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds


Coming off their first loss of the season, the 5-1 Houston Cougars travel to Rutgers for a showdown with the 4-2 Scarlet Knights Saturday at noon on ESPN News.

Houston fell for the first time this past Saturday, at home to BYU 47-46.  After trading touchdowns all night, BYU struck last with an 11 yard pass with just over a minute left that clinched the game.  John O’Korn bounced back from a shaky start the week before to lead the Cougars to 363 yards through the air, 3 touchdowns and 3 interceptions.  Daniel Spencer and Xavier Maxwell combined for just over 300 yards receiving and 2 touchdowns.  Both teams struggled mightily in the secondary and combined for over 200 yards in penalties -- many of which were defensive pass interference calls.  Despite the loss, the Cougars remain undefeated in conference play and can really build some solid separation if they are able to take down the Scarlet Knights this weekend.

Rutgers Scarlet Knights vs. Houston Cougars Pick-Odds-Prediction 10/26/13

Rutgers had a little over two weeks to prepare for the Cougars after falling at Louisville on Thursday night football 24-10 on October 10th.  The Scarlet Knights did a decent job of keeping the Cardinals aerial attack in check, but doomed themselves with 4 interceptions that continuously gave the Cardinals great field position.  Gary Nova managed just 202 yards passing to go along with his 4 interceptions and found himself on the ground often as well as the Louisville defensive line dominated Rutgers up front all night long.  Rutgers managed only 62 combined rushing yards and lost the time of possession battle as they continued to cycle off the field quickly.  The loss moved Rutgers to 1-1 in the conference.  A win this Saturday could go a long way to helping Rutgers make a late season run as the schedule gets quite manageable moving forward.

Some trends to consider -- Houston is 4-0 against the spread in their last 4 games and Rutgers is 8-2 against the spread in their last 10 after a bye week.

Houston got back to slinging it around this past weekend but the Cougars will face a much stiffer test in a hostile environment that features a solid Rutgers secondary.  Rutgers has bounced back from losses this season with some strong performances at home and I expect this weekend to be no different as the Scarlet Knights get the two touchdown victory and send the Cougars to their first AAC defeat.  I also like the under in this one as the Rutgers defense will likely dictate the tempo in this contest.

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Rutgers -9.5

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