The ACC action heats up this Saturday night (7:15pm ET) as the Louisville Cardinals (6-3) travel to Alumni Stadium in Chestnut Hill, MA to take on the host Boston College Eagles (6-3) in primetime. Louisville lost their last time out last Thursday night to Florida St. 42-31 in a game that they led at halftime 21-7. The Cardinals have also lost to Virginia (23-21) on the road in week 3 and Clemson also on the road in week 7 (23-17). Boston College has won two in a row over Virginia Tech on the road last week 33-31 and on the road against Wake Forest the previous week (23-17). They have lost to Pitt (30-20) at home in week 2, Colorado St. (24-21) at home in week 5 and at home to Clemson (17-13) in week 8.
The Cardinals rank 54th among FBS teams in scoring offense with 30.9 points per game and 77th in total offense with 383.4 yards per game. Running back Michael Dyer and wide receiver DeVante Parker are big-time playmakers that can take the ball the distance. Both are finally healthy and should be at full strength for this game. Defensively the Cardinals will be without linebacker Lorenzo Mauldin, a key cog in their top-5 ranked rushing defense. Louisville ranks 8th nationally in scoring defense with 17.7 PPG allowed and 6th in total defense with 280.6 YPG allowed.
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Boston College ranks 77th among FBS teams in scoring offense with 27.4 PPG and 65th in total offense with 406.6 YPG. Boston College is led by quarterback Tyler Murphy, an excellent runner who averages 107 YPG and who came over as a transfer from Florida after last season. The Eagles can boast both a top 10 rushing offense and rushing defense, a feat that no other team in the nation can claim. BC ranks 19th nationally in points allowed with 20.1 per game and 11th in total defense with 312.4 YPG allowed.
Louisville vs. Boston College Spread, Line and Betting Odds:
Louisville Cardinals -3
@Boston College Eagles +3
Over 45.5 (-110)
Under 45.5 (-110)
Betting odds taken from BetOnline.ag
Louisville vs. Boston College Pick:
Louisville and Boston College will meet for the seventh time on Saturday with the tied at 3-3. The two schools haven’t faced each other since 1998 when the Cardinals defeated Boston College 52-28.The Cardinals are making their first trip to Chestnut Hill since suffering a 33-3 loss to the Eagles in 1991. The Eagles are 2-1 all-time against the Cardinals at BC. Louisville defeated Boston College 36-22 in 1989 and lost 41-7 in 1986.
The Cardinals and the Eagles feature two of the best defenses in the ACC and in the top 20 in the nation. BC is built to play a ball-control type of game, as the Eagles have lost only 2 fumbles on the season, and that is their recipe for success: making few mistakes and controlling the tempo of the game with their rushing attack. They have out-rushed their opponents 1,973 to 222 in their 6 wins this season. Louisville is strong under head coach Bobby Petrino when they win the turnover battle, 26-1, but they are playing a team that is designed to win those battles. BC should be able to control the clock and execute their game plan to perfection at home, take the Eagles and the points here.