The Arizona Wildcats have one of the nation’s top players at QB, but their 2018 season isn’t off to the best of starts. Last week ‘Zona dropped a 23-28 contest to BYU as -11.5 favorites. Oddsmakers have made the Wildcats -3.5 ‘dogs in the NCAAF Week 2 AAC free pick against the 1-0 Houston Cougars. Can Arizona really drop to 0-2 today or does their talent rise to the top?
Can Tate Break Loose Today?
Is it possible that Khalil Tate lost the Heisman already in week 2 of the season? Of course probably not, but the Arizona QB was bottled up for the most part by the BYU defense last week. The junior sensation had just 14 yards on 8 carries last week although he did find the end zone on one of those. Tate also threw for 197 yards and a score but it wasn’t enough to pull out the win as nearly 12 point favorites at home. 5’6″ J.J Taylor isn’t the biggest back out there, but he did have 85 yards on 18 carries last week. His success can keep the Houston defense at bay, making Arizona a solid ‘dog pick in the NCAAF week 2 AAC free pick.
Was the Arizona defense good enough to win last week? The answer is a solid no to that question. BYU pounded the ball on the ground, running 43 times for 183 yards. Houston is a versatile offense that ran for 250 yards last week which is why today’s game could be a high scoring one – oddsmakers have set the O/U at 71, the highest of the day. Tate should be better after a rough 1st week, but can the Arizona defense stop the Cougar attack?
The Houston Offense Was Clicking Last Week
Who knows how impressive the Cougars win was last week considering they were playing Rice as -25.5 favorites. They didn’t cover the number in a 45-27 win, but the Houston offense looked great nonetheless. QB D’Eriq King looked legit with 320 yards and 3TD on just 24 attempts. Marquez Stevenson was the beneficiary of most of those throws, catching 5 for 107 yards. Stevenson also broke a 51-yard TD run. Patrick Carr also broke a 37-yard TD run showing that the Cougars have some big play potential for the NCAAF week 2 AAC free pick.
The biggest question of today’s game is if the Houston defense can stop Tate and Company. After all the Cougs gave up 27 points to Rice last week. Even worse, Rice compiled 439 yards which is why today’s O/U is so high. Rice ran the ball 43 times last week and also threw for nearly 300 yards. You can blame some of that on 1st game jitters – or is it a sign of a more sever problem for the Houston defense?
NCAAF Week 2 AAC Free Pick
The betting public is split on this game with just 52% on the home team Cougars. There’s been plenty of line movement in this game too with the spread opening at HOU -7 but being bet to HOU -3.5. The Cougar defense looked horrible last week, but so did the Arizona offense. Home field decides this game, especially if BYU unlocked the blueprint on how to stop Tate’s ground game.
Free Pick: Houston Cougars -3.5