2018 C-USA Championship Game: Odds, Analysis, College Football Betting Pick

OddsShark.com@@OddsSharkFeatured ColumnistNovember 27, 2018

FILE - In this Sept. 1, 2018, file photo, Middle Tennessee quarterback Brent Stockstill (12) passes in the first half of an NCAA college football game against Vanderbilt, in Nashville, Tenn. Stockstill knows what will be required for the Blue Raiders to have a chance in Saturday’s game at No. 3 Georgia. Perfection. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey, File)
Mark Humphrey/Associated Press

Middle Tennessee just beat Alabama-Birmingham last week 27-3, winning outright as a three-point underdog on the college football betting line. The Blue Raiders now battle the Blazers again, this time in the Conference USA championship game on Saturday afternoon on their own home field in Murfreesboro.

College football point spread: The Blue Raiders opened as 1.5-point favorites, according to sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark. (Line updates and matchup report)

College football betting pick, via OddsShark computer: 28.9-26.0 Blazers (College football picks on every game)

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Why the UAB Blazers can cover the spread

Alabama-Birmingham won eight games in a row into November and clinched C-USA's West Division title with time to spare. The Blazers then lost their last two games, to Texas A&M and last week to Middle Tennessee, but nonetheless have come a long way in two seasons since re-starting their football program.

UAB drove its opening possession of the game last week to a field goal and only trailed the Blue Raiders 13-3 late into the third quarter. The Blazers couldn't get anything going offensively, in a performance better left forgotten.

Prior to last week UAB had out-gained seven of its previous nine opponents, and out-rushed eight of its previous nine foes. The Blazers are also 7-3 ATS over their last 10 contests.


Why the Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders can cover the spread

Middle Tennessee finished its regular season with a 5-1 run, capped by its 27-3 victory over UAB last week. And with a loss by Florida International the Blue Raiders clinched the C-USA East.

MTSU spotted the Blazers the first three points of the game, then scored the last 27 for the outright win as three-point dogs.

On the afternoon, Middle Tennessee out-gained UAB 394-89, held a 19-8 advantage in first downs, limited the Blazers to minus-1 rushing yards and won time of possession by a 35/25 margin. So the Blue Raiders have out-gained each of their last four opponents and out-rushed four of their last five foes. They're also 5-0 ATS their last five times out.

Two weeks ago Middle Tennessee fell down to a pretty good Kentucky team 17-0, pulled to within 31-23 early in the fourth quarter, lost 34-23 but covered as a 16-point dog.


Smart betting pick

As mentioned above the Blue Raiders dominated UAB last week. Also, the Blazers are hurting along their offensive line. And while UAB may hold an edge on defense, Middle Tennessee owns the edge at quarterback. The smart money here bets the Blue Raiders.


College football betting trends

The total has gone under in UAB's last four games vs. Middle Tennessee.

Middle Tennessee is 7-0 SU and 6-1 ATS in its last seven games at home.

The total has gone under in Middle Tennessee's last four games at home.


All college football odds and betting trends according to Bleacher Report's official odds partner, OddsShark. Check out OddsShark on Twitter and Instagram or head to YouTube for more betting picks and analysis on this week's top games. You can also download the free odds tracker app.