Joey Johnson-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Tulsa running back Shamari Brooks
Tulsa 2018 Betting Odds
- To win the National Title: +750000
- To win the AAC: +10000
- To win the AAC West: N/A
- Win Total: 4 (over -155, under +125)
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Tulsa 2018 Schedule, Betting Odds
The Action Network Projected Wins: 5.4
Bet To Watch
Tulsa Win Total Under 4 (+125)
Skelly Stadium introduced beer in 2016 and wine for last year’s 2-10 season. As the offensive production slowed down for the once highly-revered head coach Philip Montgomery, Tulsa’s defense fell into the bottom 10 in almost every advanced stat (adjusted sack rate, passing success rate, explosiveness, etc). Montgomery elected to keep defensive coordinator Bill Young, who has coached Division I football since 1976.
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The Golden Hurricane offense ranks 35th in returning production, while the defense sits in the middle of the pack in that same category. They will bring in a number of junior college defensive players, but Tulsa has consistently ranked outside the top 100 in defending rush and passing explosiveness since 2015 (when Bill Young started as defensive coordinator).
Montgomery’s tenure feels like all four wheels fell off, and he only has one donut spare is in the trunk. Much like Tulane game from 2017.
The 2018 schedule is unkind, and could be the demise of Tulsa early. The Golden Hurricane will be an underdog in non-conference games vs. Texas, Arkansas and Arkansas State. They also draw a tough opener against an FCS powerhouse in Central Arkansas, which could certainly pull off an upset as a roughly 10-point underdog.
My projections have the Golden Hurricane favored in conference play against only UConn and Tulane — two teams that defeated Tulsa as underdogs in 2017. Even with the offseason projection bumps for returning offensive pieces and 2nd Order Win Total, I don’t see Tulsa falling into a circle of Kansas-like hopelessness.
That said, I wagered on Tulsa under 4 season wins at +125, which I can root for as I sip on some 3.2% beer at Skelly Stadium this fall. Don’t mind the aggregate win projection of 5.4, as I just don’t see five wins on the schedule.