New Orleans Bowl – Southern Miss vs Middle Tennessee Free Pick: The game’s being played in New Orleans, so nobody has a distinct advantage in this one, yet it’s close enough where teams will get fans driving in. Both these teams had solid seasons, and it should be one heck of an offensive showcase, and in those types of games, nobody’s ever out of it, and nobody’s ever safe.
Middle Tennessee comes in winners of their last 6 games, outscoring their opponents at least 2 to 1 in 5 of those 6 contests. They haven’t played the biggest baddest competition over the last 6 games, but straight pancaking the competition needs to be recognized, and that’s exactly what they’ve been doing.
The Blue Raiders are 9-3 on the season, 9-3 ATS, 5-1 at home and 4-2 on the road. They’ve won everywhere. They score an average of 31 points per game while giving up 23. They are 7-5 O/U, going 4-2 O/U in their recent 6 game winning streak. They’ve out-rushed their opponents in each of their last 6 games.
The Golden Eagles are 7-5 on the year, 6-5 ATS, 6-0 at home and just 1-5 on the road, making me question their chances away from home in this bowl game. They’ve averaged 33 poitns per game while giving up 24.5. SMU has played a much tougher schedule than the Blue Raiders. The Eagles have won 5 of their last 6 games ATS, and are 4-2 SU over their last 6 games.
It comes down to their rushing attack, their momentum, and their ability to play anywhere – and because of that, I like the Blue Raiders to pull the bowl upset.
Southern Mississippi Golden Eagles vs. Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders (+4)