The 2014 bowl season rolls into its second weekend with a Saturday afternoon (4:30 pm ET) game featuring the 22nd ranked Boston College Eagles (7-5) of the Atlantic Coast Conference and the Penn St. Nittany Lions (6-6) of Big 10 Conference in the Pinstripe Bowl from Yankee Stadium in New York, NY. The Eagles won their regular season finale at home over Syracuse 28-7 to snap a two-game losing streak, which saw them drop games to Louisville (38-19) and Florida St. (20-17). The Nittany Lions dropped their final two games to Illinois (16-14) on the road and Michigan St. (34-10) at home to back into a bowl berth instead of finishing with a better than .500 winning percentage in new Head Coach James Franklin’s first season at the helm.
Boston College is ranked 81st nationally in scoring offense with an average of 25.9 points per
game and 77th among FBS teams in total offense with 383.3 yards per contest. The Eagles rank 19th nationally in points allowed with 20.5 per game and 12th in total defense 313.5 YPG allowed.
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Penn St. is ranked 112th nationally in scoring offense with an average of 19.8 PPG scored and 115th among FBS teams in total offense with 325.5 YPG. The Nittany Lions rank 8h nationally in points allowed with 17.7 per game and 2nd in total defense 269.8 YPG allowed.
Boston College vs. Penn St. Spread, Line and Betting Odds:
Boston College Eagles -2.5
@ Penn St. Nittany Lions +2.5
Over 40 (-110)
Under 40 (-110)
Betting odds taken from Bovada.lv
Boston College vs Penn St. Pick
The Eagles are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games on grass, 1-5 ATS in their last 6 bowl games and 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games overall. The Nittany Lions are 5-0 ATS in their last 5 non-conference games, 16-7 ATS in their last 23 games on grass and 1-3-1 ATS in their last 5 games overall. The Under is 22-7 in the Eagles’ last 29 non-conference games, 6-2 in their last 8 neutral site games and 6-2 in their last 8 games overall. The Under is 4-1 in the Nittany Lions’ last 5 games against ACC teams and 19-7 in their last 26 non-conference games.
This game will feature strength against strength as Boston College’s 14th ranked (251.8 YPG) power run offense will be up against Penn State’s #1 ranked run defense that has allowed only 84.8 YPG on the ground. The Nittany Lions have played tough against strong running teams all season long, against Indiana’s 9th ranked rushing attack they held Hoosiers star Tevin Coleman to only 71 yards (3.6 YPC) on the ground in a hard-fought 13-7 win.
Neither team has a recent history in bowl games, as this will be the first bowl game in three seasons for Penn St. after their bowl ban was lifted by the NCAA this season. Boston College will be playing in their first bowl game since 2007. The Eagles’ offense is sparked by QB Tyler Murphy who broke the ACC’s single-season record for rushing yards by a quarterback with 1,079 yards. For Penn St., sophomore quarterback Christian Hackenberg regressed this season after throwing for 20 TDs last season by throwing for only 8 TDs in Franklin’s first season in Happy Valley.
Given Penn State’s ability to stop even the best running teams, BC’s one-dimensional nature on offense and the fact that this will be the coldest bowl game due to its location in New York; points should be tough to come by. Penn St. has had trouble scoring points against just about everyone this season, and BC should struggle to score as well. The Eagles look like a solid favorite here and if you were to parlay the Eagles and the Under I would not try to stop you, but the call here is to take the Under as the stronger trend and with the possibility of weather adversely affecting the scoring.