Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#355 Boise State -7 vs.
#356 BYU 48.5
Saturday, October 19, 2019 at 10:15pm EDT
LaVell Edwards Stadium, Provo
Written by Adam Rauzino

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#355 Boise State University
#356 Brigham Young University
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The BYU Cougars will host the Boise State Broncos in an MWC tilt Saturday night from LaVell Edwards Stadium. The Broncos cruised to a 59-37 home win against Hawaii in their previous clash, and the Cougars dropped a 27-23 road decision to South Florida last week. Boise State tallied a 21-16 home win against BYU last season.

#14 Boise State Routs Hawaii, Remains Undefeated

The #14 Boise State Broncos will attempt to keep their undefeated record intact in this challenging road matchup. They also stand at 3-0 in MWC play which included a dominating 59-37 home win against Hawaii last week in a game that had the Broncos labeled as 13 points favorites. Broncos’ QB Hank Bachmeier exited the game early with a hip injury and he is questionable. Chase Cord came in and he was stellar, collecting 175 passing yards with three touchdowns. Boise State has depth at QB and if Bachmeier cannot play in this game, Cord is a capable replacement. Cord has recorded 295 passing yards with a 6:0 TD to INT ratio, while Bachmeier has accumulated 1547 passing yards with a 9:3 TD to INT ratio.

Boise State features two potent RB’s led by Robert Mahone who has accrued 375 rushing yards. The junior RB has rushed for over 70 yards in two out of his last three games, and he has notched 375 yards, while teammate George Holani has 366 rushing yards.

The Broncos have several big threats in their receiving core. They have three players with over 300 receiving yards led by John Hightower. The senior WR is red-hot, securing 246 yards in his last two games, and he is up to 444 receiving yards on the year. The Broncos passing offense will be tested against a good BYU pass defense this week.

The Boise State defense surrendered a season-high 37 points against Hawaii last week, although overall they are solid. The Broncos pass defense stands 43rd in the FBS. They are currently averaging 37 points on the season, ranking them 26th in the country. The Boise State defense is holding opponents to 19.5 points, placing them 27th overall, and they are 2-0 on the road.

BYU Charged with Third Consecutive Defeat

The BYU Cougars are in desperate need of a win. The Cougars losing streak was extended to three games in a 27-23 road loss to South Florida last week in a matchup that had BYU favored by 4.5 points. BYU is playing without #1 QB Zach Wilson and their top running back Ty’Son Williams is out for the remainder of the regular season. Jaren Hall got the start at QB last week and he exited with an injury after completing 15 of 23 passes for 148 yards. Hall is questionable with a possible concussion but OC Jeff Grimes stated he is hopeful the freshman QB will play. If he is unable to suit up, 3rd string QB Baylor Romney will start. Romney connected on 6 of 10 passes for 73 yards last week.

The Cougars rushing offense was able to register 218 yards against USF last week despite playing without their top rusher. Emmanuel Esukpa tallied 43 rushing yards on 13 carries against USF, and he has 184 rushing yards on the year.

Alevo Hifo has the potential to put up big numbers. The senior WR tallied 111 receiving yards against Toledo last month and 87 yards against Washington in week four. Hifo has 303 receiving yards on the season. The BYU offense has not fared well recently due to their tough string of injuries.

The Cougars' defense hasn’t been a big problem in their three-game slide. They are tremendous against the pass, holding opponents to 189 passing yards per game, while their rush defense stands down at 123rd. BYU is scoring an average of 22.3 points, ranking them down at 105th overall. They are allowing an average of 30.5 points, pegging them down at 95th in the FBS. The Cougars are 1-2 on their home field.

Best Bets for this Game

Full-Game Side Bet

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I am siding with BYU in this one. Boise State will likely win but BYU should keep this game very close. The Cougars usually play very tough on their home field where they recorded a 30-27 home win against #24 USC earlier this season, and this team also defeated Tennessee this season. The Cougars are battle-tested as they have already faced three ranked teams including Washington.

Furthermore, Boise State does a good portion of their offensive damage in the air, and the Cougars pass defense is a strength. They are limiting opponents to only 189 passing yards per game, good for 24th in the FBS. BYU came close in a 21-16 road loss to Boise State last season, and they should keep this one close.

Prediction: BYU Cougars

Full-Game Total Pick

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The under is a solid option. I expect BYU’s defense to keep them in this game. Boise State has taken advantage of multiple weak defensive units this season including two easy games against UNLV and Hawaii. It won’t be easy this week against a strong pass defense. The under is also 8-3 in the Broncos’ last 11 games overall.

In addition, BYU is playing without their top QB and running back so I definitely don’t expect big points from the Cougars. The Broncos defense is stellar and they have allowed 19 or fewer points in three out of their last four games, plus the under is 6-0 in their last 6 games following an ATS win. The under has cashed in six out of the last eight meetings between these two teams, and it should convert again in this one.

Prediction: Under

Full-Game Prop Bet

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The under on the Boise State team total offered on PointsBet is a solid option. The Broncos passing game ranks 11th in the FBS, and while they should have some success, BYU has a strong set of cornerbacks and safety’s which has resulted in one of the better pass defenses in the country. Also, the Broncos rushing offense isn’t a huge threat as they are only averaging 167 rushing yards.

Prediction: Boise State Team Total Under

Half-Time Side Pick

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I am going with Boise State on the first half-line. The Broncos feature great stats in the first half. They are averaging a terrific 16.8 points in the first half, compared to only 10.2 points from the Cougars. The Broncos surrendered 23 points in the second half last week, and I anticipate a strong second half from BYU.

Prediction: Boise State
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Written By Adam Rauzino

Adam has been a sports fanatic his entire life, closely following hockey, baseball, basketball and football. Adam enjoys analyzing various stats, as well as studying Sabermetrics and analytics to take his picks to a whole new level. Adam has a passion for writing about various sports as well as personal finance and has brought his talents to us here at Winners and Whiners. He graduated with a diploma in business marketing and business finance.