2015 Cincinnati Bearcats College Football Betting Predictions

Posted by Mila Anderson on July 20, 2015 in

Entering the 2015 season, the Cincinnati Bearcats are one of the hottest commodities in the NCAA football lines, boasting of five AAC titles and two BCS Bowl Berths, to go with a 75-28 record since 2007. Coach Tommy Tuberville is entering his third year with the Bearcats after leading them to two consecutive 9–4 seasons, including a share of the AAC title last year. Commendable as it is the Bearcats have fared decently in Tuberville’s brief tenure, the expectation among Cincinnati fans is that the team will be able to soar into higher heights in 2015. The fact that Tuberville has lost his two bowl games with the Bearcats is particularly a growing concern, one that the coach will need to solve in the coming season, in addition to fighting for the ACC title and seek a finish in the final AP top 25.

2015 Cincinnati Bearcats College Football Betting Predictions

Assessing Cincinnati’s Offense

For leadership in the team, the Bearcats will be looking up to quarterback Gunner Kiel to give another inspirational year after a great showing in 2015 that included a six-touchdown performance in his collegiate debut last year. The former No. 1 quarterback recruit went on to finish the year with 31 touchdown passes to tie Cincinnati’s single-season record. Assisting Kiel in Cincinnati’s 13th-ranked passing offense from last season will be the returning talented receiving corps that includes Shaq Washington (66 catches and four TDs) and the duo of Mekale McKay and Chris Moore, who both racked up eight TDs apiece last year.

Also, with some of the offensive linemen from 2014 gone, the returning tackles, Parker Ehinger and Justin Murray, and center Deyshawn Bond will need to offer leadership and guidance to the new recruits who will be filling up the vacant positions.

In the backfield, Tion Green and Hosey Williams missed most of 2014 with injuries, which affected the Bearcats as they finished the season ranked 72nd in the nation in rushing. Staying healthy will therefore be important if the running department is to perform better. Watch out for Mike Boone (who led the team with 650 rushing yards and nine TDs as a freshman) to feature strongly once again amidst the returning backs.

Assessing Cincinnati’s Defense

The biggest priority for the Bearcats in the new season will be to improve their leaky defense that was torched for an average of 27.2 points per game in 2014 and gave up 33 plays of 30-or-more yards. So bad was the Cincy defense that in the 50–28 blowout loss to Ohio State last year, the team gave up a whopping 710 yards. Of the returning defensive starters, DE Silverberry Mouhon and safety Zach Edwards (121 tackles) are the only noteworthy talent.

Fortunately, with Steve Clinkscale (who previously served as the team’s secondary/cornerbacks coach) was promoted to become the new defensive coordinator in place of the departed Hank Hughes, currently serving as defensive line coach at Nebraska. Clinkscale did a serviceably good job in nurturing talent in the secondary, which should help him add some toughness and skill to the defense.

In addition, veteran cornerback Adrian Witty is returning from an injury-laden 2014, so the D- line will be getting some much-needed uplift and help to the new defensive recruits.

Final Remarks and 2015 Predictions About Cincinnati

After leading the Bearcats to a 9-4 record in 2014 despite a very dismal play in the defense, the slight improvements expected in the defense, added to their really good offense, should catapult the Bearcats to at least 10 regular-season wins in 2015. Cincinnati’s biggest competition in the AAC East division will come from UCF and Temple, though going by the deficiencies in both teams, I see the Bearcats bullying their way to a comfortable divisional title. For the conference title, Houston, Memphis and Navy from the West will be tough to handle, but the Bearcats figure to be in the mix strongly.