Houston Cougars (11-1) vs. Cincinnati Bearcats (12-0)
December 4, 2021 4:00 pm EDT
The Line: Cincinnati Bearcats -10.5 / Houston Cougars +10.5; Over/Under: +55
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The Cincinnati Bearcats meet the Houston Cougars on Saturday in the in the AAC championship game from Nippert Stadium.
The Houston Cougars will look to list the AAC conference championship trophy for the first time since the first conference title game back in 2015. Clayton Tune has thrown for 3,013 yards, 26 touchdowns and 8 interceptions on 68.7% passing while Alton McCaskill has a team-high 844 rushing yards with 16 TDs and Ta’Zhawn Henry has 492 rushing yards with 7 scores. Nathaniel Dell has 71 grabs for 1,027 yards and 11 TDs while Jeremy Singleton has 470 receiving yards and another three Cougars have at least 300 receiving yards as well this season. On defense, Donavan Mutin has a team-high 65 total tackles while Marcus Jones has 5 interceptions and Derek Parish and Logan Hall each have 5 sacks as well this season.
The Cincinnati Bearcats will be looking to win back-to-back conference championships in their third straight title game appearance. Desmond Ridder has thrown for 3,000 yards, 27 touchdowns and 8 interceptions on 66% passing while Jerome Ford has a team-high 1,055 yards and 17 touchdowns this season. Alec Pierce leads the Bearcats in receiving with 802 receiving yards on 48 catches with 7 touchdowns while Tyler Scott has 452 receiving yards and Tre Tucker has 397 receiving yards as well this season. Another three Bearcats have at least 200 receiving yards as well for the Bearcats this season. On defense, Joel Dublanko leads the Bearcats with 99 total tackles as well as 3.5 sacks while Deshawn Pace has 4 interceptions and Coby Bryant has 3 interceptions this season.
Houston is 5-2 ATS in their last 7 conference games and 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games as an underdog while the over is5 -1 in their last 6 road games. Cincinnati is 8-3 ATS in their last 11 home games and 5-0 ATS in their last 5 games against a team with a winning record while the under is 5-1 in their last 6 games as a favorite.
I get the case that can be made both ways in arguably what could be the game of the day on conference championship weekend, but I’m still looking at the under here. Cincinnati has one more chance to make a case to the playoff committee, and while a win in the conference title game over a ranked Houston team would be a case in and of itself, a solid defensive performance would help matters. On the flipside, Houston’s been playing fantastic defense all year long and this feels like a first to 24 wins kind of game. I’ll take the under in a black and blue championship game.