The Florida Atlantic Owls (10-3) host the SMU Mustangs (10-2) this weekend in the Boca Raton Bowl. Kickoff is set for 3:30 PM EST on December 21st at FAU Stadium and the game will be nationally televised on ABC.
Taking a look at the full list of college bowl betting odds, Southern Methodist is currently listed as a 3.5-point road favorite. The total for the game is sitting at 69.5 points. You can also click here to check out our 2019-20 bowl predictions page.
Boca Raton Bowl Vegas Odds Preview: Florida Atlantic vs SMU
SMU won two out of their last three games to close out the regular season with a 10-2 record overall. The Mustangs beat Tulane 37-20 at home their last time out, racking up three touchdowns in the first half alone en route to a double-digit victory. QB Shane Buechele went 15/27 for 180 passing yards and three touchdowns through the air while RB Xavier Jones exploded for 125 rushing yards and two scores on the ground. James Proche also got in on the scoring parade, finding the end zone on one of his seven receptions for 71 yards. As a whole, SMU averaged 43 points and almost 500 total yards of offense per game this year.
The Mustangs weren’t nearly as impressive on the other side of the ball through their first twelve games, surrendering an average of almost 32 points per game. SMU really struggled to slow down opposing offenses through the air, allowing almost 285 passing yards per game.
Florida Atlantic reeled off six consecutive wins down the stretch to finish the regular season 10-3 overall. The Owls really made a big statement their last time out, crushing UAB 49-6 at home in the Conference-USA championship game. QB Chris Robison went 17/37 for 267 passing yards and four touchdowns through the air, one of which was caught by Deangelo Antoine. Antoine ran circles around the Blazers secondary, racking up 112 receiving yards on just five catches. Overall, FAU averaged over 35 points and almost 450 total yards of offense per game on offense this year.
The Owls defense was pretty solid in most major defensive categories during the regular season, giving up just 22 points and well under 400 total yards of offense per game. Florida Atlantic was especially impressive defending against the pass, holding their opponents to under 235 yards per outing through the air.
2019 Boca Raton Bowl Free Betting Pick & Predictions: OVER 69.5
While I am also at least somewhat tempted by SMU against the spread, I refuse to lay 3.5 points and don’t want to pay extra juice to get rid of the hook. Therefore, the only play I’m really considering from the 2019 Boca Raton Bowl is the OVER on 69.5 total points scored, as both of these offenses can really put up a lot of points in a hurry. SMU and Florida Atlantic averaged a combined 39 points per game during the regular season, while the Mustangs defense surrendered nearly 32 points per game. While the Owls defense appears to be much stronger based on both points allowed and total yards allowed per game, it is important to remember that they also had a much easier schedule due to the fact that most of their opponents this year were fellow Conference USA teams.
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Southern Methodist was certainly involved in their fair share of shootouts away from home this season, as the OVER has now come through in five out of their last six outings away from Gerald J. Ford Stadium. The total has also gone OVER in nine out of SMU’s last 12 games overall. On the other side, the OVER has hit six out of the last seven times Florida Atlantic was an underdog against the spread. I’ll avoid guessing against a tough spread in favor of the OVER on 69.5 total points scored in what should be a highly entertaining game filled with plenty of big plays and touchdowns.