South Florida-Tulsa Bet to Watch: Is This Line Way Off?

South Florida-Tulsa Bet to Watch: Is This Line Way Off? article feature image

Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Charlie Strong

South Florida-Tulsa Betting Odds, Pick

  • Odds: South Florida -7
  • Over/Under: 61
  • Time: 7 p.m. ET, Friday
  • TV: ESPN

Fresh off a near-disastrous non-cover against Houston, Tulsa plays another weeknight game against a top-tier AAC team. This time, it’s South Florida.

The line opened USF -7.5 and has stayed around that number, dropping down to -7 earlier in the week before coming back to -7.5 at some books.

>> All odds as of 7 a.m. ET. Download The Action Network App to get real-time odds and track your bets.

Key Matchup: USF D-Line vs. Tulsa O-Line

Tulsa was supposed to revitalize its offense under former Baylor assistant Phillip Montgomery, but it just hasn’t happened. The Golden Hurricane rank 118th of 130 FBS teams in yards per play (4.79), and 107th in offensive S&P+.

A big problem is protecting the quarterback — Tulsa allows sacks on more than 11% of its dropbacks, among the worst in FBS.

South Florida has 3.2 sacks per game, good for 14th in the country, and a sack rate of more than 9%. That ranks 18th.

Freshman quarterback Seth Boomer is expected to start for Tulsa again this week, and will have trouble moving the ball like he did against Houston.

Bet to Watch for South Florida-Tulsa

On what will be a relatively quiet Thursday and Friday night for me, it was nice to see one game where my numbers were nowhere close to the market.

I have this USF -13, and I’m even more pleased that this number was created at least in part from Tulsa’s performance with its much better quarterback, Luke Skipper.

With backup Boomer (who started against Houston) starting against the Bulls, there’s a case to be made that my numbers are giving Tulsa too much credit. Awesome.

This number in the market could be a product of a few things. USF hasn’t been friendly to bettors, going 1-3-1 against the closing Pinnacle number, so maybe the Bulls are being downgraded a little bit.

Tulsa also gave Houston a significant upset bid in a nationally televised game last week, but that was among the more misleading final scores you’ll see. Not only was Boomer awful for the ENTIRE game (he finished 13-of-31) but the Golden Hurricanes took advantage the Cougars’ sloppy play early. Of Tulsa’s 13 first-half points, three came off a turnover, three came off a Houston turnover on downs, and the lone touchdown was a 33-yard scoring pass on a fourth-and-4 that was too far away for a field-goal attempt.

It was essentially a giant house of cards, which finally came crashing down in the fourth quarter when Tulsa was outscored 24-3 and almost didn’t cover +17. Much like Houston, USF has a significant talent edge, as well as significant edges on offense and defense.

There is no discernible coaching advantage one way or the other. I am quite frankly out of reasons not to take USF at -7, so I will trust my numbers and back the Bulls on Friday night.