Week 9 College Football Predictions & Picks for Friday Night’s Slate

We’ve got three games in the college football slate for Friday including a Big Ten match-up that should be a blow out. But there’s a late night match-up between Hawaii and Wyoming that can go down to the wire.

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Minnesota vs Maryland Friday, Oct 30 at 7:30pm EST, ESPN

For the first game of the season, Minnesota had plenty of players that didn’t suit up for their loss against Michigan. We watched Minnesota stick around with Michigan early but couldn’t stick around in the second half.

Tua Tagovailoa’s brother, Taulia Tagovailoa got the start after transferring from Alabama. You can say that he’s nothing like his brother, who we’ll get to watch on Sunday. He went 14 of 25 against Northwestern for 94 yards in a brutal 43-3 loss to Northwestern.

Maryland had just 207 yards on offense and allowed a whopping 537 yards on defense to Northwestern. Although, Minnesota had their struggles too. Even with Tanner Morgan, who is expected to have a fantastic season after a breakthrough with the Gophers last season. Morgan only threw for 197 yards and a touchdown and also had an interception.

While the passing game was underwhelming, Minnesota’s Mohamed Ibrahim rushed for 140 yards on 26 attempts along with two touchdowns. That’s 5.4 yards per carry.

Looking back to that first game, Maryland allowed Northwestern to rush for 325 yards. Ibrahim has to be licking his chops. 

Minnesota’s defense is projected to be a mid-tier defense. They’ll get an offense that was dreadful against another miid-tier defense in the Big Ten in Northwestern.

I love the returners on Minnesota’s offense and believe Maryland will become the worst Big Ten team this season. There’s no defense and the offense is going to struggle all season long.

NCAAF Pick 1: Minnesota -10.5 First Half (-105) via DraftKings

East Carolina vs Tulsa Friday, Oct 30 at 9:00pm EST, ESPN2

Tulsa is the real deal. They’re 2-1 on the season but have wins against USF and 11 ranked UCF. The only loss was a close game against a now top 10 team in Oklahoma State.

Tulsa has looked solid on defense, allowing just 348 yards per game and while their offense isn’t the most explosive, Zach Smith has thrown for five touchdowns in three games and is a senior leader for the football team.

Tulsa’s defense has allowed just 18.3 points per game and two of their three games were against high ranked opponents.

East Carolina is now 1-3 to start the season with losses to Navy, Georgia State and UCF. They also lost to Tulsa 49-24 last season in November.

East Carolina is allowing 37 points per game but scoring 31 points per game. However, scoring might be hard to come by against Tulsa. East Carolina is known for running the ball this season but Tulsa has prevented some big time offenses from getting large amounts of rushing yards, including Oklahoma State.

East Carolina quarterback Holton Ahlers returned to practice after having COVID (which was likely a false positive). He’s slated to play quarterback this week after backup freshman Mason Garcia couldn’t d anything offensively against Navy in last week’s loss.

Ahlers had a great game against USF in his last start this season with three touchdowns and no interceptions with a 65.4 percent completion percentage.

In his previous two games, he threw four interceptions and three touchdowns. Tulsa will give him problems in this one.

In Tulsa’s last two games and wins, they’ve scored 42 against USF and 34 against UCF. But East Carolina, with Ahlers back, should at least put up a fight. I’d be concerned taking a -17 point favorite in this one.

In East Carolina’s three losses, they’ve scored 28, 29 and 23. If they contribute at least 23 points, I’d expect this game to go over the total.

NCAAF Pick 2: Over 60.5 (-107) via DraftKings

Hawaii vs Wyoming Friday, Oct 30 at 9:45pm EST, FS1

As an underdog on the road, Hawaii upset Fresno State, 34-19. They made Fresno State look silly in their win with over 550 yards of offense.

Wyoming played a close game against Nevada but lost on the road in overtimie, 37-34.

There’s some hype around Chevan Cordeiro, the quarterback of Hawaii even though Cordeiro didn’t have a touchdown in the first game of the season. He still went 20 of 31 for 229 yards.

Fresno State got to Cordeiro four times for four sacks. He’s a mobile quarterback and also attempted 13 rushes for two touchdowns and 116 yards. That’s an average of 8.9 yards per rush after that one game. Wyoming’s defense was solid against the run last week.

In that loss for Wyoming, the Cowboys had just 361 yards of offense with 223 yards passing and 128 yards rushing. And while Hawaii’s offense was solid, their defense struggled and allowed over 400 yards themselves.

Wyoming is starting freshman quarterback Levi Williams. He’s a young prospect with plenty of talent. He, like Cordeiro, is a runner and ran for four yards per carry in his first game of his career.

This is going to be a tight game. I’m impressed with Wyoming and what their defense can do against the run. I believe Wyoming is slightly better than Hawaii. We know Hawaii has struggled on the road in the past.

NCAAF Pick 3: Wyoming -1 (-110) via DraftKings

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