Middle Tennessee vs. Connecticut: Betting Odds, Picks, and Predictions (10/22/21)

Middle Tennessee vs. Connecticut Betting Odds

Friday night gives us one of the more disgusting games of the season. However, every game involving the 1-7 UConn Huskies is gross, as the Huskies have a claim as the worst team in FBS.

However, with Connecticut fully launching online sports betting earlier this week, we at Lineups.com thought it was prudent to cover the hometown team. If you’re a Connecticut resident and a Huskies fan, it’s your duty to celebrate this achievement by making your first legal sports wager on this game.

But I digress – The Blue Raiders haven’t been much better than the Huskies this year. MTSU sports an 0-4 record on the road this season, but given how bad the Huskies are, it’s still laying over 15 points in this road matchup.

Middle Tennessee should cruise to a road victory in this spot, but do they have enough juice to cover the big spread?

Let’s dive into this matchup.

Middle Tennessee State University Blue Raiders Odds

Through six games, the Blue Raiders are in trouble.

They managed to beat Marshall as 11-point underdogs, but otherwise rank among the bottom-10 FBS teams in both Offensive and Defensive Success Rate. They’ve actually been okay at getting points on the board, scoring almost 28 points per game, but they’re allowing well over 30 points per game.

Their quarterback duo of Chase Cunningham and Bailey Hockman is averaging 7.2 yards per attempt while completing just over 60% of their passes. However, the two have posted a respectable 16:4 touchdown-to-interception ratio.

MTSU’s ground game is truly pathetic. The whole offense is averaging less than three yards per carry and about 80 yards per game. Meanwhile, the defense is allowing almost 200 rushing yards per game on almost five yards per carry.

Honestly, I’m amazed this team has won two games. They played great against Marshall, but they still posted just a 22.5% Offensive Success Rate in the second half and finished with a postgame win expectancy of 69%, per College Football Data. The Raiders got a bit lucky in that one.

But they shouldn’t need much luck to pull out this game.

Connecticut Huskies Odds

Right now, the Huskies are losing games by an average of almost three touchdowns. The Huskies are scoring just 16.6 points per game while allowing over 35, both stats that rank among the bottom-10 FBS teams.

To make matters worse, head coach Randy Edsall stepped down earlier this season, leaving Lou Spanos at the helm.

But Spanos managed to lead Connecticut to their first win of the season last week, a 21-15 win against Yale. It was a disgusting game, where both teams finished with just a 29% Offensive Success Rate and averaged less than five yards per play.

However, the difference was Yale’s four turnovers. Without those, there’s a chance Connecticut doesn’t win the game, because Yale outscored the Huskies 15-0 in the second half.

This season, there are 153 college quarterbacks that have dropped back at least 75 times, including three UConn quarterbacks, in Jack Zergiotis, Tyler Phommachanh, and Steven Krajewski. All three rank among the bottom-10 in PFF’s passing grades.

That tells the story of the UConn offense. The story of the UConn defense:

  • The Huskies are allowing more than 200 yards rushing per game
  • The Huskies rank 107th in Defensive Success Rate
  • The Huskies are 116th in Defensive Points Per Opportunity

Connecticut is truly awful.

Prediction and Pick

My pick: Middle Tennessee -15.5 (-115 at DraftKings)

Although sports betting is now legal in Connecticut, and everyone wants to back their hometown Huskies, that would be a very unwise move.

The Blue Raiders aren’t good, but they’re at least frisky. UConn is a walking dead team. The Huskies needed four turnovers to beat Yale by less than a touchdown, and they got destroyed in the advanced box score during the second half.

While there is some sharp money hitting the Huskies, I won’t be caught dead betting on Connecticut. Instead, I will fade them until the sun explodes.

Tanner joined Lineups to cover everything, but he has vast experience in, and unlimited passion for, Major League Baseball and NCAA Basketball. He’s a McGill University grad and former (Canadian) Division-I alpine ski racer who now spends his time drinking beer and betting home underdogs. Patrick Mahomes is a poor man’s Tom Brady.

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