Air Force vs Colorado State Odds & Picks: Falcons to Roll?

Air Force vs Colorado State Odds & Picks: Falcons to Roll? article feature image

Mark Goldman/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Air Force’s Jared Roznos (left) and Dane Kinamon (right).

Air Force vs Colorado State Odds

Saturday, Oct. 28
7 p.m. ET
CBS Sports Network
Air Force Odds
-110o / -110u
Colorado State Odds
-110o / -110u
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute NCAAF odds here.

We got ourselves a Mountain West bout with the 19th-ranked Air Force Falcons visiting the Colorado State Rams.

Air Force has been dominant all season, having yet to lose a game. Its most recent game in Annapolis can be tacked on as an ugly, yet smothering win over a fellow service academy Navy.

The Falcons will look to continue their undefeated season against the vulnerable Rams.

Colorado State made waves earlier this season with the high-profile bout against in-state rival Colorado. However, since then, the Rams have not held up very well. They lost two out of their last three, and the one win won was a one-point difference against Boise State on a Hail Mary.

Where does the betting value lie in this matchup? Let's find an Air Force vs. Colorado State prediction in this college football betting preview for Saturday, Oct. 28.

Check out our NCAAF Betting Hub for more college football previews, predictions, news and analysis.

Air Force Falcons

Zac Larrier is the only guy this season under center, and he’s been the guy.

There was a lot of uncertainty last week that he was going to be out for a while with a knee injury, but he showed up to everyone’s surprise.

While Air Force doesn’t throw the ball a ton, he’s been on the mark when he does. Larrier completes 72% of his passes and has helped the Falcons become the most explosive passing offense in the country while ranking third in Success Rate.

Jared Roznos has been Larrier’s favorite target. When he’s targeted, it’s usually for the explosive play as Roznos averages 31 (!) yards per catch.

It’s rather staggering to see how much Air Force runs the ball. It’s such an efficient run game, ranking 11th in Success Rate and seventh in PPA. However, betting aside, it feels like the backs will be run into the ground by the time the games get important.

While Larrier runs the ball a lot, and does a great job at it, Emmanuel Michel gets the rock the most. He averages a little over 19 carries per game with an average of 4.2 yards per.

Besides him, both John Lee Eldridge and Owen Burk are threats in their own right. I’m surprised Eldridge doesn’t get more burn. He makes the most of his opportunities, averaging nine yards per carry.

Defensively, Air Force has definitely held its own. It holds opponents to 13.4 points per game, does a great job at preventing explosive plays and ranks 30th in Havoc.

The pass rush is led by Bo Richter and PJ Ramsey, who have combined for 10.5 sacks. However, the secondary could be better, which is why it's ranked just 51st in Defensive Passing Success Rate.

Richter leads the team in tackles for loss by a wide margin, which definitely helps the run defense. He and Ramsey are pure animals on the edges, and their presence has allowed the Falcons to be ninth in explosiveness allowed.

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Colorado State Rams

For a redshirt freshman, Brayden Fowler-Nicolosi has definitely opened some eyes. The talent is there, but he’s still pretty raw. He completes 64% of his passes and has over 2,000 yards with 15 touchdowns.

Having three studs in Tory Horton, Dallin Holker and Justus Ross-Simmons catching his bullets doesn’t hurt. Horton and Holker have both brought in six touchdowns each, while Ross-Simmons averages nearly 16 yards per catch.

Fowler-Nicolosi has helped the Rams place in the top 50 in Passing Success Rate in addition to a rank of 30th in PPA. That alone should be recognized. The future may be bright in Fort Collins.

I wish I could say the same things about the run game. CSU places near the bottom of every category when it comes to running the ball. The Rams rank 128th in Rushing Success Rate and 132nd in both PPA and explosiveness.

Its top rusher, Vann Schield, is not good enough to be the top guy in the backfield. He’s averaging 4.5 yards per carry, but the emphasis on the pass deems him almost irrelevant.

Behind Schield, Kobe Johnson and Avery Morrow have been underwhelming, each averaging 2.5 yards per carry, which is probably why this run game has been so inefficient.

Defensively, there’s not much there. Stopping the pass has been a major problem for them all season, as they rank 113th in Defensive Success Rate. But at least they sort of make up for it in their run defense, which comes in at 71st in Success Rate and 30th in PPA.

The star of the show is Mohamed Kamara, who absolutely causes problems for every team he’s lined up against. He leads the team with 13 tackles for loss and 10.5 sacks.

Those are truly amazing numbers that stick out like a sore thumb on a mostly inefficient defense.

Air Force vs Colorado State

Matchup Analysis

Toggle the dropdowns below to hide or show how Air Force and Colorado State match up statistically:

Air Force Offense vs. Colorado State Defense
Rush Success1171
Line Yards659
Pass Success3110
Finishing Drives2743
Quality Drives13120
Colorado State Offense vs. Air Force Defense
Rush Success12852
Line Yards13122
Pass Success4025
Finishing Drives6394
Quality Drives1189
Pace of Play / Other
PFF Tackling455
PFF Coverage1256
Special Teams SP+1946
Middle 835131
Seconds per Play32.9 (133)22.6 (8)
Rush Rate92.5% (1)37.1% (131)

Air Force vs Colorado State

Betting Pick & Prediction

Air Force’s future was up in the air two weeks ago when Larrier went down. Yet, he stepped up and played through an injury that was thought to be much more serious.

Even though CSU’s run defense is semi-effective, I truly think that with how much the Falcons run the ball, it’ll be too much in the end.

Kamara will cause problems, but he can’t do it alone. Air Force also has a very stout offensive line that shouldn’t have a problem stopping the Rams.

This number sits at Air Force -13.5, and quite frankly, I think that's generous. Another week to rehab for Larrier is only going to benefit the Falcons. Plus, Air Force’s offensive line is among the best in the country.

CSU has a truly explosive offense, but the Falcons specialize in preventing those types of plays. When you take away the big play, Fowler-Nicolosi will start forcing things, which is why he has 11 interceptions.

The Falcons have been a joy to watch, and I think they’ll continue their dominance tonight.

Pick: Air Force -13.5 (Play to -16.5)

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