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Navy vs. South Florida Pick – NCAAF Week 9

Navy has a way of creeping up into the top 25 quietly. They obviously aren’t the flashiest team and don’t garner much attention, other than for a day if they beat a bigger school, but other than that Navy just quietly goes about their business and does what they have to do. Impressively enough, Navy has come out of the Kennan Reynolds’ era looking alright. Reynolds had a brief stint with the Baltimore Ravens in training camp and caught on their practice squad. Reynolds made the switch to wide receiver after breaking records at Navy as a quarterback. Quarterback at Navy isn’t your prototypical quarterbacking job. At Navy you better be ready to run and run some more in the triple-option offense. Reynolds did a fine job of doing just that, running the offense to perfection and getting the Navy football program on the map.

Navy has turned the page from Reynolds and has simply plugged in another quarterback to effectively run the triple-option. It isn’t the worst scenario in the world when you have an offense that can just reload at the quarterback position, and that’s what they have at the Navy Academy. The school realized they are not going to attract huge, burly offensive lineman, which is why you see the military schools use triple-options, so they do not need to recruit the big lineman up front. Instead, quick offensive lineman who can move around easily are best for a triple-option. So, Navy, Air Force, and Army really don’t have much of a choice, they’d get destroyed in the trenches if they ran a normal offense.

Navy has been manned at quarterback by Will Worth who has been operating the offense to perfection. Worth has shown he can throw the football too, with 5 touchdown passes on the season with 2 interceptions. He threw the ball quite well in high school, so it isn’t foreign to him. A quarterback that has a little bit of ability to throw the football in a triple-option offense can be deadly. The Midshipmen have shown how deadly they can be, posting a record of 5-1 with some wins against quality opponents along the way. Navy has beaten Houston and Memphis the last two weeks, the Houston win coming as their highlight win of the year, and then getting ready for Memphis a week later was impressive as well. A win over South Florida tonight would mark the third straight good win for Navy before November arrives. The Bulls are coming off a loss on the road to Temple, they need a win here or run the risk of their season nosediving.

Navy Midshipmen vs. South Florida Bulls NCAAF Betting Odds:

Spread:
Navy +6.5(-110)
vs. South Florida -6.5(-110)

Total:
Over 64(-110)
Under 64(-110)

Odds provided by Bovada.lv

Navy vs. South Florida Pick:

Navy ran it up on Houston and Memphis, scoring 46 points and 40 points. Houston wouldn’t go away, but in the end Navy held on for a 46-40 win at home to make for one of their biggest wins in quite some time. Houston appears to be distracted by the prospect of head coach Tom Herman going to the University of Texas, which looks like a done deal at this point. Navy took advantage of the moment and made it look easy against a good Houston defense. The Midshipmen are averaging big yardage on the ground with 293.2 yards per game for 4th in college football. Worth also threw 2 touchdown passes in that win over Houston two weeks ago.

Memphis had no answer for Worth last week, as they watched him rush for 201 yards and 3 touchdowns. Navy rushed for 447 yards in total last week. Worth and Navy should be in for another big day on the ground rushing the ball. Note that South Florida is giving up yards on the ground, a lot of them. On the season they’re allowing an average of 206.3 yards per game, which is 100th in college football. Florida State scored 55 points on them and rushed for 478 yards. They are pretty well the only team they’ve played this season who are good at running the ball. Navy are 4th running the ball and Florida State are 33rd, so Navy may be in for even a bigger test tonight.

South Florida are back at home where they are at their best. The Bulls are averaging 44 points per game at home in South Florida. Overall they are 8th averaging 42.4 points. Expect South Florida to gash the ball on the ground as well, they are 12th with 255.5 yards rushing. Quarterback Quinton Flowers has rushed for 745 yards and 8 touchdowns on the ground, parlayed with 15 touchdown passes and 5 interceptions. It wasn’t Flower’s fault against Temple last week, the defense just couldn’t contain the Owls in that one. Navy and South Florida both rank in the top offensively in some key categories. I was expecting the total to be more in the 68 to 70 range, so I will gladly take the OVER here at 64.

PICK: OVER 64 POINTS (-110)