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East Carolina Pirates vs. Ohio Bobcats Beef 'O' Brady's Bowl Pick-Odds-Prediction 12/23/13

Ohio Bobcats (7-5) at East Carolina Pirates (9-3)

College Football: Monday, December 23, 2013 at 2:00 pm (Tropicana Field)

The Line: East Carolina Pirates -13.5 -- Over/Under: 62 See the Latest Odds


The Ohio Bobcats play the East Carolina Pirates in the Beef ‘O’ Brady’s Bowl at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, FL on Monday.

East Carolina finished 9-3 overall and 6-2 in Conference-USA this year. This is an East Carolina team that has earned victories over North Carolina and North Carolina State this season. The East Carolina offense has been explosive all year. Junior Shane Carden threw 55 touchdown passes, 19 to standout junior WR Justin Hardy in the last two seasons for East Carolina, which averaged 40.4 points this season. Hardy averaged 8.8 receptions this year, which ranks fifth in the nation, for 1,218 yards and 8 touchdowns. Hardy is also only 19 yards shy of 3,000 in his career. WR Isaiah Jones, 54 catches for 556 yards, and RB Vintavious Cooper, 995 rushing yards and 11 touchdowns, are also key players in the Pirates offense. East Carolina has allowed 28 sacks this year which could cause some problems on Monday. The Pirates defense, led by senior LB Derrell Johnson who has 7.5 sacks, is allowing 25.2 points per game and has registered 35 sacks this season.

East Carolina Pirates vs. Ohio Bobcats Beef 'O' Brady's Bowl Pick-Odds-Prediction 12/23/13

James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

The Ohio Bobcats finished the season with a 7-5 record overall and 4-4 in the Mid-American Conference. The Bobcats snapped a three-game losing streak by totaling 461 yards in a 51-23 home victory over Massachusetts in the regular-season finale. Ohio senior QB Tyler Tettleton recorded 66 scoring strikes in three years at the helm and the Bobcats scored 38 or more points in five of last nine games this year. Tettleton has completed 33-of-48 passes for 551 yards and four touchdowns with one interception in his two bowl outings. WR Donte Foster has 63 catches and 858 yards this season for the Bobcats. RB Beau Blankenship, who ran for four touchdowns and 104 yards in last year’s bowl game, totaled 844 yards this season and has 24 career rushing touchdowns for Ohio. The Bobcats defense is allowing 26.7 points and 392.3 yards per game and has produced 34 sacks this season.

This game consists of two experienced and productive quarterbacks that bring high-octane offenses on to the field. The key to this game will be which team can get to the quarterback and disrupt the passing game. If neither team can get to the quarterback then this game will be a shootout. However, both teams have the ability to put pressure on the opposing quarterback; it’s just hard to say which team will have more success. I think the winner of this game may reach 40 points so I think the over may be a good play. I would lean towards taking East Carolina because I think they are the better team, but the line seems to be the correct number. I feel safe taking the over with these two offenses.

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