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Betting Preview: Nevada Wolf Pack at UNLV Rebels

10.02.2010     07:09 AM         Printer Friendly

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Nevada -20.5 at UNLV O/U 62 
Recommendation: Over 
Saturday, 7 pm PT


The lights of Las Vegas will be shining on this late night Silver State showdown Saturday between Nevada and UNLV. The biggest trophy in college football is the Fremont Cannon, and last year Nevada blasted it big in pounding UNLV to keep the Cannon for the fifth straight year.

You may recall that Nevada rolled up 773 yards offense on UNLV in a 63-28 Reno route that included 559 yards rushing by the Wolf Pack. Now the Pistol offense is in high gear led by senior quarterback Colin Kaepernick. His long strides and ability to both run and read the defenses have troubled even some stronger defenses this season. Nevada crushed Cal 52-31 with over 500 yards offense and followed that with a beat down of BYU at Provo last week as Nevada rolled up 300 yards offense in the first half and then put it on cruise control for a easy 27-13 win and cash for Fairway’s faithful followers and regular clients.

Don’t be surprised if you tune into the Mountain Network and see Nevada running wild again Saturday night. But know that if you bet the Wolf Pack, you’re laying a number that is at least a touchdown higher than what would have been the line just three weeks ago. The Rebels have a long way to go under first year coach Bobby Hauck, but the defense is improved and UNLV picked up their first win 45-10 last week in convincing fashion over one of the nation’s worst teams, New Mexico.

Still, the question Saturday is can UNLV score enough to keep pace with Nevada, or as we recommend, hit a few scores to get this over the total? The Rebels do have a few offensive weapons at wide receiver and if QB Clausen can continue some of the form he flashed last week and minimize mistakes and turnovers, they have a chance to make some big plays through the air against a improved but still suspect Nevada secondary.

However, despite the rivalry and players pushing their hardest to perform, I don’t see how UNLV stops this Nevada freight train that is no. 4 in the nation in offense averaging over 525 yards per game. Kaepernick is setting nearly every school record but is moving up in the NCAA record books, as he’s now top-10 in both rushing touchdowns and rushing yards by a quarterback. No fluke for him or the Wolf Pack, as they performed well against Cal and BYU the past two weeks and while the oddsmaker adjusts the number, Nevada is capable of outperforming those expectations. Along with Kaepernick and his no. 3 total offense ranking himself, the Wolf Pack feature All-WAC running back Vai Taua. UNLV sees the Pistol offense annually, yet they still struggle to slow it down as Kaepernick runs the Pistol to precision and has improved his passing game immensely while now generating some Heisman Trophy hype.

Nevada cracked the top-25 this week for the first time in over 60 years. They have earned the accolades and deserve credit for their accomplishments. Nevada coach Chris Alt and the Wolf Pack showed last year that they will hold nothing back against their state neighbor to the south that often gets more attention. Nevada was firing passes for the end zone in the fourth quarter last year as they piled up 42 second-half points and showed no mercy. Nevada has averaged 38 ppg against UNLV while beating them each of the past five years. This year’s Wolf Pack team is the most powerful yet, thus I believe Nevada can score at least six touchdowns again on the Rebels and the OVER is of interest this week.

More Sportsmemo Handicapper Game Previews         
Penn State at Iowa - Marty Otto        
Texas vs. Oklahoma - Helmut Sports       
Florida at Alabama - Brent Crow      
Miami at Clemson - Rob Veno     
Baltimore at Pittsburgh - Teddy Covers    
Washington at USC - Andrew Lange     
Stanford at Oregon - Erin Rynning  
Washington at Philadelphia - Fairway Jay 
Cal Poly at Fresno State - Andrew Lange

Tags: Nevada Wold Pack UNLV Rebels WAC Mountain West Colin Kaepernick __ College Football




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