The 6-6 Northern Illinois travel to Shreveport, Louisiana to take on the 7-5 Louisiana Tech Bulldogs in this year’s 2008 Independence Bowl.
Our team of writers and handicappers break down the matchup and hand out an Independence Bowl Free Pick, which takes place Saturday December 28 at 8:00PM ET.
Oddsmakers from online sports book Sportsbook.com have made Northern Illinois -1 point spread favorite. The over/under for this game has been set 47 total points.
Top Public Betting Trend: Northern Illinois is just 1-4 against the spread in its last five games while Louisiana Tech is 4-1 straight up in its last five games. The total has also gone over in four of Louisiana Tech’s last five games.
Key Stat: The Bulldogs are Huskies are both averaging 25.3 points per game this season and can both run the ball very well. NIU is averaging 169.4 rushing yards per game while Tech has averaged 195 yards per game on the ground.
Game Outlook: The Huskies are favored in this contest because their defense is allowing 18.1 points per game and NIU has the edge in passing yards, passing defense and turnover differential. But Louisiana Tech is one of the more underrated rushing teams in the nation and comes into this game a winner of four of its last five. The Bulldogs last loss game in the season finale against a high-scoring Nevada team, yet it should be noted that Tech battled extremely tough and took Reno to the final gun in a 35-31 defeat. Northern’s defense might look good on paper, but it played a lot of sub par MAC opponents this year and didn’t face a rushing team nearly as good as the one it’ll play in Tech on Sunday. Expect the Bulldogs to do what they do best in running the ball, keeping the opposing offense off the field coming away with a straight up win. We also lean towards the over in this contest, although that might not hit until deep into the fourth quarter. For the rest of our College Football Bowl Free Pick, see below.
Our Free College Football Bowl Pick for the Independence Bowl matchup between the Northern Illinois Huskies and Louisiana Tech Bulldogs game is
LOUISIANA TECH +1
TheSpread.com Projected Final Score
Louisiana Tech 28
Northern Illinois 27
We also predict that this game will GO OVER THE TOTAL (47 Sports Interaction.com) SET BY ODDSMAKERS
Posted: 12/28/08 3:30PM ET