Football Odds — Bowling Green Defense Poses Stiff Challenge For Pittsburgh in Little Caesars Pizza Bowl

Football Odds -- Bowling Green Defense Poses Stiff Challenge For Pittsburgh in Little Caesars Pizza Bowl

You might say that the Bowling Green Falcons are carrying a head of steam into the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl in Detroit on Thursday night, as they have won 10 out of 13 games, both straight up and against the football odds. The Pittsburgh Panthers, on the other hand, could be limping into this one, as they’ve covered just one out of their last eight and have a 6-6 record. The action gets underway at 6 PM ET at Ford Field in Detroit.

Bowling Green is the champion of the Mid-American Conference, defeating Northern Illinois in the title game. That contest is significant for a number of reasons; for one thing, Bowling Green spoiled the hopes of the Huskies, who thought they might bust into the BCS for the second straight season. Also, that game took place at Ford Field, so they should have some familiarity with the surroundings. There might be up at of a transition, as coach Dave Clawson has accepted the job at Wake Forest, but they have an assistant, Adam Scheier, who has been with the team the last five years, assuming the head coaching duties for this game on an interim basis.

In the college football odds that have been posted on this game at BetAnySports, Bowling Green is the favorite:

College Football Odds courtesy of BetAnySports Offshore Sportsbook

Bowling Green Falcons -6.5 -115
Pittsburgh Panthers +6.5 -105

Over 49.5 points -110
Under 49.5 points -110

Bowling Green did get blown out by Indiana (42-10) in what was the low point for its season, but they did close strong, outscoring the last five opponents by a 223-44 margin. The strength of this team is on defense; they ranked fifth in scoring defense fourth in passing efficiency defense, and eighth in total defense. They are very good at mixing the run and the pass on offense. Quarterback Matt Johnson, who was actually rejected by Pittsburgh for being too small to play the position, had 23 touchdown passes on the year, with only seven interceptions. Unquestionably his best game of the season came when it counted most – in the conference title game, as a three-point underdog in the football odds, when he threw for 393 yards and five touchdowns against the team that had been undefeated up to that time.

He’s got an outstanding wide receiver in Ronnie Moore, who averaged 20.6 yards per catch, and running back Travis Greene rambled for 1555 yards. This “Big Three” on offense affected much balance, but as some BetAnySports customers know, Bowling Green has to worry about the man who might be not only the best defensive player on the field, but the best defensive player on ANY field in college football. We’re talking about Aaron Donald, Pittsburgh’s defensive tackle, who led the nation with 26.5 tackles for loss. He has the ability to disrupt a running game, and also get pressure on the passer.

College football odds bettors should keep in mind that Pittsburgh has scored some significant wins for example, they dealt the Duke Blue Devils one of their two regular-season losses (that is, before Duke got walloped by Florida State in the ACC title game) and they also defeated Notre Dame. The only question is, will be inconsistency that has plagued the Panthers all season long rear its ugly head here?

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Charles Jay

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CHARLES JAY grew up around the gaming business, was raised in the boxing business, and along the way has developed a colorful background through a wide range of experiences. Jay was a veteran of almost two decades actively in the boxing industry, as a writer, publicist, matchmaker, booking agent, manager, and promoter. He was engaged as editorial consultant for USA Network's "Tuesday Night Fights" for seven years, and also did some on-air work for USA. He also served as color commentator for, among others, Sunshine Network and Prime Network, and has called more than a dozen world championship fights for national and/or international television. He has been the host of numerous radio programs, including "Sportswatch with Charles Jay" on KDWN in Las Vegas, "Total Action" on WAXY 790 in Miami, and "Charles Jay's Winning Edge", syndicated into 55 markets by the American Radio Networks. For the past 20 years, he has been a professional sports handicapper, and as a consultant to the casino industry from 1993-95, helped to launch Casino Magic in Mississippi as a major venue for sports promotions. Also, he's been a casino/sports gaming columnist for a number of leading publications, including Sports Form, Casino Player, Card Player, and The Gambler. In the 2000's, he became widely known as one of the world's leading proponents and experts on the subject of boxing reform, having been asked to appear on numerous panels and speak at officials' seminars. He was the author of "Operation Cleanup" and "Operation Cleanup 2: Unfinished Business" - two critically-acclaimed e-books that represent arguably the most comprehensive and in-depth examination of boxing reform issues ever put into publication. In 2004 he published a third electronic book - "Body Shots: Outside the Ring and Inside the Game of Pro Boxing". In 2003 he was the recipient of the "Dignity" Award, in the category of "Best Sports Writer," as bestowed by the Retired Boxers Foundation.

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