(211) Rice vs. Louisiana Tech (212)
PICK: bwin @ Under 52.5 (-115)
DATE: November 10, 2018 - 7:00 PM
STAR RATING: 10.0
EXPERT: Power Sports
EVALUATION: Win (1000) - Final Total 41
10* Under Rice/La Tech (7:00 ET): Well, it's official. With last week's home loss to UTEP, you have to consider Rice to be the worst team in the country. The Owls are 1-9 SU, their one win coming by three points (in the season opener) against FCS Prairie View A&M. Since then, they've lost every game by at least 14 points w/ one exception. Last week's loss to UTEP. But they trailed the Miners 34-3 early in the second half before storming back w/ a furious rally. Keep in mind that UTEP is a team that had lost its previous 20 games. So now it's Rice w/ the longest active losing streak in the country. It's not likely to end in the next two weeks either, which will be spent in the state of Louisiana. There's a game at LSU, but not before this one in Ruston.
La Tech doesn't exactly come into this week in fine form. They were blown out last week at Mississippi State, 45-3. Though they likely didn't expect to win (were 23-point underdogs), that result still had to be disappointing nonetheless. It was their third loss of the season, though the C-USA West Division is still technically in play. It doesn't help that the Bulldogs lost to UAB earlier in the year, another game where they were held to single digits. But they'll certainly have to win out, a possibility, but they also need two losses from UAB down the stretch as well. It can't be overstated how last week was clearly La Tech's worst game of the season. It was their lowest scoring game in a decade. The defense allowed Miss State to score on every 1st half offensive possession. The good news is they're facing a much weaker opponent this week.
Even as bad as Rice is, this spread is high enough that I'm going to abstain from making a play on the side. But the total really intrigues me. Rice only averages 19.6 PPG to begin with, but what's really interesting is that they are top 15 in the country in time of possession. Yet they are 123rd in scoring. Their defense is bad, giving up 38.5 PPG. But can La Tech take full advantage? The Bulldogs are averaging only 25.2 PPG and are remarkably inefficient themselves given they are also top 50 in the country in terms of TOP. I assume La Tech will play this one fairly conservatively given they head out on the road again next week (at Southern Miss). 10* Under Rice/La Tech