The UCF Knights (5-2) head to Philadelphia this weekend for an American East battle against the Temple Owls (5-2). Kickoff is set for 7:00 PM EST on October 26th at Lincoln Financial Field and the game will be broadcast on ESPN2.
Taking a look at the Week 9 college football odds, Central Florida opened as a 10-point road favorite earlier this week. The spread has moved up by half a point after early betting, as the Knights are currently listed at -10.5. The total for the game is sitting at 60.5 points.
Vegas Betting Preview & Game Odds: Temple vs UCF
UCF has now won two out of their last three games after beating East Carolina 41-28 at home last weekend to move to 5-2 on the season overall. The Knights scored 21 unanswered points in the first quarter and held on down the stretch despite getting outscored 22-6 in the second half. QB Dillon Gabriel played well, going 22/35 for 365 yards and two touchdowns through the air. Gabriel also rushed for 26 yards and a score on the ground while RB Bentavious Thompson also found the end zone on one of his ten carries for 51 yards. Gabriel Davis led the way for the receiving corps, exploding for 164 yards and two touchdowns on 9 catches. As a whole. Central Florida generated around 600 total yards of offense and scored six touchdowns against a shell-shocked Pirates defense.
The Knights didn’t have a great outing on the other side of the ball against ECU, surrendering three touchdowns on 443 yards of total offense. Central Florida really struggled to contain the receiving duo of C.J. Johnson and Tyler Snead, as the pair combined for 190 yards and a touchdown.
Temple saw their three game winning streak come to an end last weekend, falling 45-21 on the road against #16 overall SMU to drop to 5-2 on the season overall. The Owls gave up 10 unanswered points in the the first quarter and never recovered, getting outscored 35-21 over the final 45 minutes of the game. QB Anthony Russo wasn’t at his best, going just 18/32 for 171 yards and one touchdown. However, Russo did find the end zone on the ground as well while RB Re’Mahn Davis rushed for 54 yards and a score on a team-high 16 carries. Branden Mack also found the end zone on one of his three catches for 65 yards. Overall, Temple gained almost 300 total yards of offense and scored three touchdowns despite coming up well short on the scoreboard.
The Owls were very bad defensively against SMU, getting torched for over 650 total yards of offense and six touchdowns. Temple had no answer for Mustangs QB Shane Buechele, as he threw for 457 yards and six touchdowns through the air.
NCAA Football Betting Predictions & Free Pick: OVER 60.5
I’m not really sold on either of these two American East rivals against the spread here in Week 9, as UCF should likely find a way to win outright despite having to play on the road. However, the Knights may have a harder time getting past an above average Temple squad than some might think. Both schools have identical 5-2 records and Central Florida hasn’t really been blowing out their opponents in recent weeks, beating East Carolina by only 13 points at home after losing to Cincinnati the week before. Of course, Temple really struggled to slow down high-flying SMU last weekend, so I wouldn’t be surprised at all if this game turned into another shootout. UCF has scored at least 41 points in five out of their seven games while their defense has given up at least three touchdowns in five straight outings. Therefore, I think that the OVER on 60.5 total points scored represents the best value in this matchup.
Click on the link for more free college football picks from our experts on staff.
It is also important to note that the total has gone OVER in five out of the last six meetings between these two programs. The OVER has also come through in four out Central Florida’s last five games overall and in four out of the last six Saturday games that Temple has played. I really think this spread looks pretty efficient overall, so I certainly don’t want to roll the dice with either side in this matchup. Instead, I’ll take the OVER on 60.5 total points scored in what should be a highly entertaining American East battle on Saturday evening.