UAB vs. Central Arkansas - 9/3/20 College Football Pick, Odds, and Prediction

UAB vs. Central Arkansas - 9/3/20 College Football Pick, Odds, and Prediction Photo by Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports

Central Arkansas Bears (0-0) at UAB Blazers (0-0)

College Football: Thursday, September 3, 2020 at 8:00 pm (Legion Field)

The Line: UAB Blazers -16.5 -- Over/Under: 48.5 Click Here for the Latest Odds

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The Central Arkansas Bears and the UAB Blazers meet Thursday in college football action from Legion Field. 

Central Arkansas is coming off a pretty solid year on the gridiron in 2019, finishing 9-4 overall and 7-2 in the Southland Conference. The Bears’ season came to an abrupt halt in the second round of the FCS Playoffs however, as they lost to Illinois State 24-14. As for UAB, they finished 9-5 overall in 2019 with a 6-2 mark in Conference USA play. The Blazers won the West Division but fell in their final two games 49-6 versus Florida Atlantic in the C-USA Championship Game and 31-17 to Appalachian State in the New Orleans Bowl. Check back all season long for free college football picks and college football predictions at Sports Chat Place. 

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Central Arkansas finished in a first-place tie with Nicholls for the Southland Conference championship despite having a better overall record. The deciding factor there was an October 5 loss to Nicholls 34-14, part of the only consecutive losses the Bears had on their 2019 season. 

The Bears have already kicked off 2020 with a victory, taking a 24-17 win over Austin Peay on August 29 in the opener. Central Arkansas’ Breylin Smith threw for 283 yards and a touchdown there, but also had two interceptions. Tyler Hudson was the lead receiver with 82 yards on five catches, and Kierre Crossley rushed for 110 yards and a score on just 12 attempts. 

Over on the Blazers’ side, they were able to take the West Division in 2019, which was impressive since UAB was projected to finish around fourth place. The deciding game came in a 20-14 victory over Louisiana Tech on November 23, part of a three-game win streak for the Blazers. UAB was outscored 80-23 in their last two games to end the season on a sour note. 

2020 sees head coach Bill Clark enter his fifth season at the helm, and Bryant Vincent (OC) and David Reeves (DC) are back in their fourth years as coordinators. UAB is projected to be a contender again this year in a strong conference. QB Tyler Johnson is back, and he’s got weapons like Austin Watkins and Myron Mitchell at his disposal. There should be plenty of scoring for the Blazers this year. 

Central Arkansas is 5-2 ATS in their last seven games as an underdog and 5-2 ATS in their last seven games as a road underdog. The Bears are 5-2 ATS in their last seven road games as well. 

Meanwhile, UAB is 21-5-1 ATS in their last 27 games on field turf and 13-3-1 ATS in their last 16 games as a favorite. The Blazers are 4-1 ATS in their last five Thursday games, 20-7-1 ATS in their last 28 home games and 4-1 ATS in their last five games in September. 

Pick: I like the Blazers here. Central Arkansas put up some solid numbers in their first game; the two running backs (Crossley and Cameron Myers) combined for 186 yards and a score on 25 carries. The Bears will pass a lot, but also mix it up well. 

That said, UAB should come out firing here, and I expect the Blazers to find the end zone early and often. There are plenty of weapons on the UAB squad, and if they play to their potential I don’t see the Bears keeping up. 


Andrew’s Pick UAB Blazers -16.5

The pick in this article is the opinion of the writer, not a Sports Chat Place site consensus.