Friday afternoon brings us a very important game between the East Carolina Pirates and the No.5 Cincinnati Bearcats.
This game is only important for one of these teams in the grand scheme of things as the 11-0 Bearcats look to finish the regular season undefeated. ECU at 7-4 has already secured a Bowl game and is out of the running for any conference title.
The Bearcats, despite being one of three undefeated teams including No. 1 Georgia, are not expected to make an appearance in the College Football Playoff. They are currently ranked fifth in the CFP rankings sandwiched between Michigan and Ohio State. The two play each other this weekend with the winner likely taking the 4th spot. Therefore, for Cincy to have any chance at the CFP, Alabama, Oregon or Georgia must lose. Even then, there's no guarantee, but the Bearcats can help themselves out by blowing the doors off ECU.
Cincinnati vs. East Carolina Spread and Over/Under
- Cincinnati: -14.0 (-105)
- ECU: +14.0 (-115)
- Cincinnati: -550
- ECU: +425
- 56.0 (Over -110/Under -110)
Cincinnati vs. East Carolina Betting Trends
- The Bearcats are 1-4 against the spread (ATS) in their last five games.
- The UNDER is 4-1 in the Bearcats’ last five games.
- The Bearcats are 10-0 straight up (SU) in their last 10 games.
- The Bearcats are 8-3 ATS in their last 11 games against the Pirates.
- The Pirates are 6-1 ATS in their last seven games.
- The Pirates are 4-2 ATS in their last six games at home against the Bearcats.
- The UNDER is 4-1 in the Pirates’ last five games against the East Division.
Cincinnati vs. East Carolina Prediction and Pick
The only thing at this point that the Bearcats can do to better their chances at a CFP berth is to go off this weekend. Cincinnati not only needs to win this game but needs to win big if they hope to be the first Group Five program to make the playoff. A big win over Houston in the AAC Championship would help too.
With Cincinnati QB Desmond Ridder playing well, this shouldn’t be too hard for a much better Bearcats team. Ridder lit up the SMU Broncos for 274 yards passing and three touchdowns. He added three rushes for 46 yards and an additional TD. Meanwhile, Jerome Ford ran for 82 yards and a touchdown adding two receptions for 23 yards.
While Cincy gets the edge on offense, this doesn’t mean that ECU is a slouch. East Carolina QB Holton Ahlers also had a magical Week 12 where he went 27-for-32 for 405 yards and three touchdowns.
This game is so tempting to take an ECU upset but Cincinnati is just too good and they have so much more to play for right now. They could make history if they manage to make it to the CFP and aren’t going to let the 7-4 ECU Pirates stand in their way.
Pick: Cincinnati Bearcats -14.0 (-105)