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College Football Betting Preview: Nevada Wolf Pack at Fresno State Bulldogs

09.29.2017     07:51 AM     Teddy Covers     Printer Friendly

Submitted by Teddy Covers blog entry.
Nevada at Fresno State
Saturday, 7 pm PT
CRIS Opener: Fresno State -9 O/U 55
CRIS Current: Fresno State -9.5 O/U 61
Recommendation: Fresno State

If you want to be proactive instead of reactive as any serious sportsbettor should strive to do – the time to jump on the Fresno State Bulldogs is right now! The betting markets don’t have a strong sense of where Jeff Tedford’s squad should be power rated right now. Fresno was truly a bottom feeder by the end of the Tim DeRuyter era. They went 20-6 in DeRuyter’s first two years on the job with Derek Carr at QB, but dropped to 4-20 in his last two seasons with two of those four wins coming against FCS level competition. The markets did what they do slow to adjust, but eventually adjusting Fresno waaaaay down from where the program had been for the better part of the previous two decades.

DeRuyter, mercifully, was relieved of his duties by the time November rolled around, and Tedford took over as head coach. Tedford is a legitimate offensive guru with a strong track record as a program builder based on his successful tenure at Cal. But we haven’t seen the Bulldogs take the lid off their new offense yet. Fresno opened with FCS Incarnate Word in a 66-0 shutout over inferior competition. Then they played ‘paycheck’ games at Alabama and Washington, prior to their bye week. Fresno’s season long stats are completely meaningless – one ‘step way down in class’ game and two ‘step way up in class’ games; none of which matter one iota moving forward. With a new coach and a new direction for the program, last year’s stats are meaningless as well. Hence the betting market struggles to price them appropriately.

But make no mistake about it – Fresno is better than they were last year, potentially a lot better. They are already 3-0 ATS, showing clear signs of being undervalued in the markets off last year’s debacle This is most assuredly a statement game for the Bulldogs at home, off a bye, under the lights. Fresno hasn’t beaten an FBS level opponent since 2015 & they’ve got this game circled on their schedule as their ‘coming out party’ for the Tedford era.

And there are a lot of things to like already. Fresno was able to throw the football in those two step-up games against the Crimson Tide and the Huskies. Tedford’s preaching on taking care of the football has worked, with only two offensive turnovers thusfar. His preaching on discipline has worked as well, with Fresno sitting in the Top 5 in fewest penalties and fewest penalty yards. The Bulldogs have solid skill position talent, and a pair of decent QB’s – Chason Virgil as the better runner, Oregon State transfer Marcus McMaryion as the better thrower. But more than any other factor, this is a standout spot to bet the Bulldogs on the come.

While Fresno is rested and ready, Nevada is playing for the fifth straight week after an ugly road loss at Washington State last Saturday. Make no mistake about it – this Wolfpack program is in complete rebuild mode right now in Jay Norvell’s first year on the job; still cleaning up the mess from the Brian Polian era. The offense has committed multiple turnovers in every game. The defense just allowed more than 500 passing yards last week, on the heels of giving up 30 points to FCS Idaho State at home the previous week, a game they lost in SU fashion as 35 point favorites. Clear bet-on vs. clear bet-against.

Tags: College Football Nevada Wolf Pack Fresno State Bulldogs Mountain West Teddy Covers

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