College Football Week 6 Odds & Picks for BYU vs. Boise State: Why to Bet on the Broncos
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- BYU and Boise State face off in a critical non-conference battle between two mid-majors.
- The Cougars are 5-0 while the Broncos are coming off a 10-point loss to Nevada.
- Brad Cunningham previews the matchup and offers up his best bet.
BYU vs. Boise State Odds
|BYU Odds||-6.5 (-110)|
|Boise State Odds||+6.5 (-110)|
|Moneyline||+190 / -235|
|Over/Under||58 (-110 / -110)|
|Time||3:30 p.m. ET|
|Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute college football odds here.|
BYU looks to keep its perfect season going when it hosts rival Boise State in Provo on Saturday afternoon.
Andy Avalos isn’t off to a great start in his first season at the Boise State helm. The Broncos currently sit at 2-3 after playing an incredibly difficult schedule through the first five games, with their three losses coming against UCF, Oklahoma State and Nevada.
Avalos is known for his defensive prowess, but the unit needs to drastically needs to improve in a hurry after Carson Strong and Nevada dropped 41 points on the Broncos last weekend.
BYU’s undefeated start to the season has shocked a lot of people after it lost a ton of production, including Zach Wilson, who was the No. 2 overall pick in the NFL Draft. However, the Cougars have three wins over Pac-12 teams, including an upset at home against Arizona State.
Even though Boise State is a very difficult opponent, this is a bit of a look-ahead spot for the Cougars, who are traveling to Waco, Texas, next weekend to face Baylor.
Boise State vs. BYU Betting Preview
Boise State Offense
Coming into the season, the rushing attack was a big concern for the Broncos and they haven’t gone away through the first five games. Boise State is only rushing the ball for an embarrassing 2.4 yards per carry, ranks 124th in Rushing Success Rate and 128th in offensive Line Yards.
However, BYU’s defensive front seven hasn’t really been that effective at stopping the run, ranking 77th in Rushing Success Rate Allowed. So, Boise State might have some more success than it’s used to on the ground.
For the Broncos to have a chance at winning or covering, pretty much all of their offensive success is going to have to come through the air.
Despite the 2-3 record, Boise State’s passing attack is legit, with Hank Bachmaier under center. He’s averaging 8.3 yards per attempt, giving the Broncos the 17th-best passing offense in terms of Success Rate and has a career-best 76.7 passing grade, per PFF.
It helps when you have one of the best receivers in college football in Khalil Shakir to throw to as well. Shakir already has four touchdowns and five catches on passes over 20+ yards this season, per PFF.
My goodness Khalil Shakir.pic.twitter.com/3Zo7P94UQI
— The Action Network (@ActionNetworkHQ) October 2, 2021
He and Bachmaier should be able to torch a BYU secondary that ranks 98th in Passing Success Rate Allowed and is 50th in coverage, per PFF.
Boise State Defense
Boise State’s defense is not as bad as it looked against Nevada. The Broncos are top 50 in Success Rate Allowed and its secondary has been stellar so far.
The Broncos are 34th in Passing Success Rate Allowed and 24th in coverage, per PFF, which should be a good matchup against BYU’s offense.
The main problems for Boise State have come in the front seven. The Broncos are allowing 4.5 yards per carry, plus they rank in the bottom half nationally in Rushing Success Rate allowed and defensive Line Yards. BYU is gaining five yards a play and rushing the ball 55.80% of the time, so the Broncos will have to improve up front to hang with the Cougars.
BYU’s offense has been really good during their win streak, gaining 6.2 yards per play and ranking 23rd in Success Rate.
What’s even more impressive is they’ve been missing starting quarterback Jaren Hall for the last two games against South Florida and Utah State.
As of story publication, Hall is probable to play in this matchup.
BYU OC Aaron Roderick said all four QBs are taking reps in practice and nobody has been ruled out of game Saturday. He said Jaren Hall is closer to playing than Baylor Romney.
— Jay Drew (@drewjay) October 7, 2021
However, if Hall is under center for BYU, he’s due for some regression because in his three starts against Arizona, Utah, and Arizona State he only had a 66.6 passing grade, per PFF and he really struggles on short to intermediate throws. His passing grade is below 65 when not throwing it 20+ yards in the air.
BYU is going to have to have a lot of its success on the ground behind Tyler Allgeier, who is averaging 5.6 yards per carry and already has seven touchdowns.
The main reason for that is because its offensive line has been stellar both in run blocking and in pass blocking. Per PFF, the Cougars’ line is top 20 in terms of both run and pass blocking grade, so it should be able to control the line of scrimmage.
The defensive side of the ball is where things will get a little dicey for the Cougars. They’re replacing a lot of production (56% according to TARP) from last season and it has shown so far, as they’re allowing 5.2 yards per play and rank outside the top 70 in both Rushing and Passing Success Rate.
While they shouldn’t have much trouble stopping Boise State’s rushing attack, it’s going to be a tall task trying to slow down Bachmaier and Shakir. The Cougars are allowing 7.2 yards per pass attempt and rank 98th in Passing Success Rate allowed.
To make matters, starting cornerback Keenan Ellis is questionable to play in this game.
BYU is also terrible at stopping teams once they cross its 40-yard line. The Cougars are 78th in Finishing Drives, while Boise State is a top-10 team in the country offensively in that same metric.
Boise State vs. BYU Matchup Analysis
Toggle the dropdowns below to hide or show how Boise State and BYU match up statistically:
Boise State Offense vs. BYU Defense
BYU Offense vs. Boise State Defense
Pace of Play / Other
Even though the natural inclination is to take the 10th-ranked Cougars at home favored by less than a touchdown, Boise State’s passing attack is going to be able to throw all over BYU’s secondary, which should keep them in it.
In addition to that, Hall is wildly overrated and even though he is returning this week, I think we will see some regression from his first three starts as long as Boise State’s secondary doesn’t allow anything over the top.
Boise State vs. BYU Betting Pick
BYU opened as a -3 favorite and has been bet all the way up to -6 at some shops, as 96% of the money is on the Cougars to cover at home.
That said, I think the opening number was correct and the line movement toward BYU has created some value on Boise State.
I only have BYU projected as a -1.12 favorite and Collin Wilson’s PRO Projections have BYU as a -2.8 favorite. So, I am going to back Boise State +6, which is currently available on PointsBet and would play it down to +5.