Boise State vs Baylor Cactus Bowl Spread, Expert Pick & TV Info

Posted by Kenny Bell on Monday,December 26, 2016 12:27, EST in

No. 19 Boise State has been one of the best teams in the country to bet against this year (3-9 ATS), but this could be good spot to bet the Broncos. Baylor has lost six straight since opening 6-0, with four of its five losses since the initial loss at Texas coming by at least three TDs. Here’s a look at this year’s Cactus Bowl.

Boise State vs Baylor Cactus Bowl Spread, Expert Pick & TV Info

When: Tuesday, Dec. 27, 10:15 PM ET
Where: Chase Field, Phoenix
TV: ESPN
Stream: WatchESPN
Radio: Boise State / Baylor
Opening NCAA Football Lines: Boise -7.5 (67)

Why Bet on Boise State?

Boise State enters the Cactus Bowl with a record of 10-2, and went 6-2 in Mountain West play. The Broncos boast one of the most potent offenses in the country, leading the Mountain West and ranking 20th in the country in total offense at 479.8 yards per game. After narrowly missing out on the Mountain West title game, Boise State will be eager to prove its caliber as a 10-win team and assert itself as the class of the Group of 5.

Junior running back Jeremy McNichols finished the regular season with the fifth-most rushing yards of any FBS running back (1,663), and his 23 rushing touchdowns led all FBS running backs (not including conference championships). The two-time All-Mountain West second-team selection posted his second consecutive 1,000-yard season and ended the regular season with nine 100-plus- yard games, including three of more than 200 yards. Boise State quarterback Brett Rypien has thrown for 3,341 yards and 23 TDs against only six interceptions this season.

The Bronco defense ranks 46th in the country allowing 379.3 yards per game and is third in the Mountain West with 2.25 sacks per game. The Cactus Bowl will mark the first meeting between Boise State and Baylor.

Boise State’s streak of 15 consecutive bowl games is tied for sixth-longest in the country. This trip to the Cactus Bowl will be the program’s fourth to Arizona for the postseason, as the Broncos previously won Fiesta Bowls in 2007, 2010 and 2014.

Why Bet on Baylor?

Baylor had opened the year 6-0 and risen to as high as No. 8 in the AP Top 25, but finished the year 6-6 and tied for 6th in the Big 12 Conference with a 3-6 league record. Baylor players wanted this bowl game for their seniors. But with a coaching staff ready to depart (Temple’s Matt Rhule will take over as head coach after the bowl) and a terrible second-half finish, it’s hard to know what the vibe will be when this Baylor team takes the field one final time.

November was a brutal month for the Bears, and the low point came Nov. 5 when rival TCU came to Waco and handed Baylor a 62-22 thrashing. A week later, the Bears lost senior quarterback Seth Russell to a season-ending ankle injury.

Baylor is appearing in its 7th-straight bowl game for the first time in school history. BU is 11-11 in 22 previous bowl trips, including 3-3 in the last 6. BU looks to win back-to- back bowl games for the 4th-time in program history and first since 2011-12. Baylor is 1 of only 10 FBS programs to win at least 3 games in 5 bowl appearances since 2011.

BU has won 7 of its last 10 neutral site contests and 19 of its last 28 played outside of Waco. True freshman QB Zach Smith will being make his 4th-career start for the injured Russell. Smith has thrown for thrown for at least 200 yards and 2 TDs in each of his first three starts. The Bears have the Big 12’s best rushing attack (250.3), which ranks 13th nationally.

But top running back Shock Linwood is skipping the bowl game top focus on the NFL draft and workouts. Linwood has 138 carries for 751 yards in 2016, though he’s gotten just 14 carries for 47 yards in the past two games after rushing 24 times for 110 yards vs. Kansas State on Nov. 19. RB Terence Williams is the team’s leading rusher with 160 carries for 945 yards and 11 touchdowns.

Boise State vs Baylor Cactus Bowl Expert Pick: Boise State Broncos

Broncos are 6-2 ATS in their last 8 bowl games.
Over is 10-1 in Bears last 11 neutral site games.

Take Boise State and way over that total in NCAA Football betting.