Nevada Wolf Pack (7-4) vs. Colorado State Rams (3-8)
The Nevada Wolf Pack will be looking to snap a two-game losing streak when they take on the Colorado State Rams on Saturday. Nevada lost to the Air Force last Friday, 41-39. Nevada is 4-2 ATS in their last six games. Colorado State is in a terrible slump, losing five straight games after falling to Hawaii on Saturday, 50-45. The Rams are 0-5 ATS in their last five games.
Nevada enters as a 4.0-point favorite. The Wolf Pack won the most recent contest between these teams, defeating the Rams 49-10 in November 2018. However, CSU had won the previous two meetings.
Falcons Soar Past Wolf Pack in Third OTThe Air Force scored the only two points of the third overtime to defeat Nevada, 41-39. This was an exciting contest that saw the Falcons jump out to a 17-3 lead heading into the half, but Nevada battled back with 14 fourth-quarter points to force overtime. Both teams scored in the first two overtime periods before Air Force eventually won the contest.
Nevada is 23rd in the nation in points per game at 35.3 and is 42nd in yards per game at 431.6. The Wolf Pack offense is led by quarterback Carson Strong, who has completed 69.7% of his passes for 3887 yards and 32 touchdowns. Strong has thrown only eight interceptions in 501 passing attempts. The leading receiver is Romeo Doubs with 75 catches for 1012 yards and nine touchdowns, and Cole Turner is close behind with 60 catches for 672 yards and 10 scores.
There is a solid enough running attack for Nevada to keep defenses honest. Toa Taua is not asked to carry much of the load, but he is averaging 5.1 yards per carry, rushing for 635 yards and five touchdowns.
The Wolf Pack are 65th in the country in points allowed per contest at 25.7. Nevada has 34 sacks, 11 interceptions, and 10 fumble recoveries. Daiyan Henley is the leading tackler with 94 and has four interceptions and three fumble recoveries. He is a tenacious playmaker. Tristan Nichols leads the team with 9.5 sacks.
Rams Rally Falls ShortColorado State found themselves trailing 36-17 entering the fourth quarter, but scored 28 points to pull within five, but could get no closer in the 50-45 loss to Hawaii. Todd Centeio threw for 527 yards and five touchdowns. Dante Wright made eight catches for 150 yards and a TD. The Rams put up 651 yards of total offense, averaging 7.7 yards per play.
Colorado State is averaging 24.9 points per game, 95th overall, and they are 61st in yards per game at 413.5. The Rams have a solid ground game led by David Bailey, who has rushed for 738 yards and nine touchdowns, however, he is averaging just 3.9 yards per carry. This is one of the big challenges for Colorado State, as they are averaging 3.7 yards per carry as a team.
Centeio has rushed for 473 yards, but it is his arm that has been the key for Colorado State, throwing for 2773 yards and 15 touchdowns while completing 60.1% of his passes. Trey McBride easily leads this team in receptions with 84 for 1008 yards. The next closest player on the team has 45 fewer catches.
The Rams are allowing 26.1 points per game, 67th overall. The defense does have 36 sacks, but only six interceptions and eight fumble recoveries. Scott Patchan leads the team with 8.0 sacks. Cam’Ron Carter has been a real playmaker, leading the team with 88.0 sacks, and he has 6.0 sacks, an interception, and a fumble recovery.
Best Bets for this Game
Full-Game Side Bet
We got to see last week that Colorado State can put up some points when they have the opportunity. However, no one should consider Hawaii’s defense on the same level as Nevada’s. The Wolf Pack are about as good defensively as the Rams but have a far superior offense.
This is going to be the key to the contest. The truth is that Colorado State is not going to be able to keep up with the Wolf Pack. Hawaii letdown last week, but you can believe that Nevada is not going to make that type of mistake. Once they have their foot on the gas, they are going to keep going. Look for Strong to dominate this game, likely throwing at least five touchdown passes in the contest.
Nevada is 4-1 ATS in their last five games on the road and is 17-8 ATS in their last 25 games. Colorado State is 1-4 ATS in their last five games at home 0-5 ATS in their last five games overall.
Full-Game Total Pick
I am a little surprised by this total. With oddsmakers giving the edge to Nevada at 4.0-points, they are expecting something like a 31-27 victory for Nevada. The thing to consider is that Colorado State has reached 27 points just three times the season. Yes, they did it last week against Hawaii, but that came after four straight weeks of scoring 24 points or fewer, including scoring less than 20 in two of those contests.
Too much optimism is being given to the Rams offense in this game, and they are simply not going to deliver on that. I do expect Nevada to have a great deal of success offensively. Strong should have a dominating game, as Colorado State has a defense that can get after the quarterback, but they do not create turnovers.