Boston College vs. Louisville College Football Odds, Picks: Bet Saturday’s Road Underdog (October 23)

Boston College vs. Louisville College Football Odds, Picks: Bet Saturday’s Road Underdog (October 23) article feature image

Barry Chin/The Boston Globe via Getty Images. Pictured: Jeff Hafley and the Boston College Eagles.

  • The Boston College Eagles travel to Kentucky on Saturday afternoon to take on the Louisville Cardinals at 4 p.m. ET.
  • While the Cardinals boast a stellar playmaker under center in Malik Cunningham, the Eagles may be undervalued on the road.
  • Check out Kyle Remillard's breakdown for the game below, including betting odds, picks, and predictions.

Boston College vs. Louisville Odds

Saturday, Oct. 23
4 p.m. ET
ACC Network
Boston College Odds
-110o / -110u
Louisville Odds
-110o / -110u
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute college football odds here.

Two teams look to rebound coming off a loss as the Boston College Eagles travel to face the Louisville Cardinals in an ACC clash.

Boston College coasted through its non-conference schedule, winning all four games including a victory over an SEC opponent in Missouri. But the Eagles dropped both games since starting ACC play — a six-point road loss to Clemson and a 33-7 dismantling against NC State last week.

Louisville dropped the season opener to a high-powered Ole Miss offense. The Cards followed that performance up with three wins in a row, including victories over UCF and Florida State.

But like BC, the Cardinals have dropped both their games since entering conference play, as they lost to Wake Forest and Virginia by a combined four points.

Can Boston College slow down the Cardinals' offense and find its first conference victory?

Boston College Eagles

Boston College Offense 

Quarterback Phil Jurkovec's injury in Week 2 was a big blow to Boston College's hopes for this season.

Redshirt senior Dennis Grosel has stepped in and has been a competent replacement, but the ceiling for this offense is low with him under center. He is a game manager who has thrown for five touchdowns and five interceptions while averaging 6.9 yards per pass attempt.

The BC offense owns a rush rate of 58% and averages 4.4 yards per carry.

Running back Patrick Garwo III has been a monster for the Eagles, averaging 6.2 yards per rush on his 84 attempts this season. They will have a clear advantage running the ball in this matchup against a Louisville defense that ranks outside the top 100 in Rush Success Rate.

Head coach Jeff Hafley will stick with his strategy of leaning on the run game and keeping Grosel in manageable situations to keep the chains moving.

Boston College Defense

If Boston College wants to stay in this game, its defense will need to slow down Malik Cunningham. This unit is more than capable of doing just that as they have allowed fewer than 20 points and 330 yards of total offense per game this season.

They own a dominant run defense that has allowed 3.8 yards per carry and ranks 24th in Rush Success Rate. The Eagles have been equally as good in slowing down the pass as they rank 43rd in Pass Success Rate.

The most important factor in containing Cunningham is preventing him from extending plays and breaking tackles. Boston College ranks fifth in the nation in tackling, according to PFF.

The defense sits at eighth in pass coverage and is more than equipped to slow down the Louisville offense.

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Louisville Cardinals

Louisville Offense

Cunningham is as versatile as any player in the country. He is the heartbeat of this Louisville offense as he averages over 260 passing yards and 58 rushing yards per game.

Cunningham has accounted for 18 total touchdowns this season: eight through the air and another 10 on the ground. He has scored two touchdowns in five of the six games this season while throwing for at least one in every game.

Malik Cunningham SKRTS into the endzone to tie things up with UCF 💨

— PFF College (@PFF_College) September 18, 2021

Cunningham is the reason this offense ranks 18th in Havoc created as he can extend plays with his legs.

The Cardinals also rank in the top 50 in Rush and Pass Success Rates, but they will have their work cut out for them against a BC defense that is dominant at keeping opponents from finishing drives.

Louisville Defense

The Louisville defense has been nonexistent this season, allowing 34 points and nearly 500 yards of total offense against FBS opponents this season.

They have allowed 4.5 yards per carry and rank 106th in Success Rate. The unit has proven no better against the pass, allowing 8.2 yards per pass attempt, which ranks 96th among FBS teams.

The defense has allowed opponents to score on 24 of 25 possessions in the red zone, with 17 of those going for touchdowns.

Louisville has also been prone to allowing explosive plays as they rank 113th in Big Plays and 70th in tackling, according to PFF.

Boston College vs. Louisville Matchup Analysis

Toggle the dropdowns below to hide or show how Boston College and Louisville match up statistically:

Boston College Offense vs. Louisville Defense
Rush Success71106
Line Yards114113
Pass Success5048
Pass Blocking**12118
Big Play87113
Finishing Drives53116
** Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)

Louisville Offense vs. Boston College Defense
Rush Success4424
Line Yards3947
Pass Success3043
Pass Blocking**33112
Big Play4271
Finishing Drives3423
** Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)

Pace of Play / Other
PFF Tackling570
Middle 85569
SP+ Special Teams2644
Plays per Minute7685
Rush Rate57.5% (47)54.% (70)

Data via College Football Data, FootballOutsiders, SP+, PFF and SportSource Analytics.

Boston College vs. Louisville Betting Pick

The Boston College offense that utilizes a ground-and-pound approach should have its way against this Louisville defense.

The Cardinals have shown an inability to stop the run and can’t stop opponents when they enter the red zone. Opponents are converting 38% of third-down attempts and the BC offense will put themselves in third and manageable situations.

Boston College is one of the top defensive teams in the country and more importantly, the fifth-best tackling team. They will attempt to keep Cunningham at bay and force someone else to beat them. If BC can slow down Cunningham, the Louisville offense will run out of gas and stall.

SP+ has these two teams separated by 0.8 points in the power ratings and a projected score of 33-32.

There is value with Boston College with the points to keep this game close and potentially come away with the victory.

Pick: Boston College +6 (Play to +4.5)

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