The Fresno State Bulldogs and the SMU Mustangs are set to kick off the 2012 Hawaii Bowl on Monday 12/24, and I’m set to make my Hawaii Bowl pick for the affair at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu, HI. Kickoff is set for 8:00 ET, and I’ve got the perfect NCAA football pick for the Hawaii Bowl.
2012 Hawaii Bowl
Fresno State Bulldogs (9-3, 11-1 ATS) -12.5
SMU Mustangs (6-6, 7-5 ATS) +12.5
Fresno State was one of the best ATS teams in the country this year, but they were all over the place with ‘totals’. On one hand, the team put up 40.2 points per game and ranked 14th in the nation in total yardage at 489.2 yards per game. That seems like a surefire over, but when I look at the defensive stats for Fresno, I can’t help but be equally impressed. The team allowed just 335.8 yards and 22.2 points per game. There’s a reason that this team was just 5-6 towards the ‘over’ on the season, and there were some games that both ended up way past the number and nowhere near the number either.
SMU was largely in the same boat when you really think about it. This is a team that put up 72 against the Houston Cougars and 44 against the Memphis Tigers, but it is also the same club that scored 17 points or fewer five times on the season. What I do know about this team though, is that it has a secondary that just flat out stinks. Part of the problem for Head Coach June Jones and the gang is that the offense tries to run up to the line of scrimmage as quickly as possible with a no huddle attack, and that leaves the defense vulnerable, especially with the number of very short drives that the team has on offense. As a result, 271.2 yards per game were put up through the air against this defense.
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And that to me, is the tiebreaker of the bunch. The Bulldogs are going to get their yards, as QB Derek Carr is going to be gunning the ball all over the place. Expect Carr to have a good shot to get the four scores necessary to get to 40 for the season, and WR Davante Adams should end up with a huge game when push comes to shove against a secondary that has allowed some big time passing games. Still, I need QB Garrett Gilbert and SMU offense to do some damage as well. I just hope that I see the good SMU offense that put tons of points on the board in certain games this year, or at least not the one that was so dreadful in so many games on the campaign.
Fresno State vs. SMU Picks & Tips: Over 59.5