West Virginia vs. Miami Prediction
Will Miami cover as a small favorite versus West Virginia in the Russell Athletic Bowl tonight at 5:30PM ET?
According to oddsmakers from online sports book BetDSI, the Hurricanes are 3-point favorites over the Mountaineers after opening as a 1-point favorite when the lines were first posted by oddsmakers. As for the total, the number hit the board at 56 but has been bet up to 58.5.
WEST VIRGINIA KEY TRENDS: The Mountaineers have been a poor bowl bet, going just 1-6 against the spread in their last seven bowl appearances. They're also just 1-6 against the spread in their last seven neutral site games and are 0-4 at the betting window in their last four games played in the month of December. They're 3-10 against the number in their last 13 games when playing an opponent with a winning record as well.
MIAMI KEY TRENDS: The Hurricanes have covered the spread in four straight games, are 6-1 against the number in their last seven games coming off a win, and are 6-0 at the betting window in their last six games after allowing less than 100 yards rushing in their previous contest. That said, they're winless at 0-5 against the spread in their last five bowl games and are 0-6 against the number in their last six games played on neutral soil.
OUR PREDICTION: When Brad Kaaya is protected, he's a legitimate NFL prospect. His offensive line played much better following a four-game losing streak in the middle of the season and to little suprirse, Kaaya was excellent as the Hurricanes rattled off wins against Pittsburgh, Virginia, N.C. State and Duke to close out their regular season. Freshman wide receiver Ahmmon Richards and tight end David Njoku will be a handful for West Virginia, which ranked No. 3 in total defense this season but was exposed by better offenses. Miami allowed just 18.9 points per game defensively this season and if Kaaya is right, I like the Canes to roll.
2016 RUSSELL ATHLETIC BOWL PREDICTION: MIAMI HURRICANES -3