UNLV Rebels vs. Nevada Wolf Pack Pick – NCAAF Week 9

The UNLV Rebels and Nevada Wolf Pack meet in Reno for the Battle of Nevada. The Battle of Nevada comes with the Fremont Cannon, the most expensive and heaviest trophy in college football. It’s a literal cannon built in 1970 to replicate the cannon that John C. Fremont brought on his expedition throughout Nevada and the West in the mid 19th century.

This isn’t a trophy that can be hoisted above one’s head, but it’s one of the more interesting rivalry trophies. The cannon made its way back to Reno last year after two years in Las Vegas. As bad as UNLV has been over the years, they won in 2018 and 2019. They took advantage of Nevada in a couple of down years.

Nevada dominated from 2005 to 2012 with seven straight wins in the Battle of Nevada. They’ve won four of seven games since then, including last year with a 37-19 victory. UNLV has been bad over the years, but this has been some of the worst football in a while. The Rebels are heading to Reno with a record of 0-7 looking for their first win.

It would be mighty fine for UNLV to find their first win this season against their rivals. It’s not going to be easy versus a Carson Strong led Wolf Pack team. They lost a close one on the road versus the Fresno State Bulldogs in California, 34-32. Okay effort for the Wolf Pack who could have been looking ahead as well. Despite the loss, they covered the 3.5 points.

Strong has his mind thinking NFL as he enters the final two months of his collegiate career. The big armed Strong can let it zip. His size and arm strength has caught the eye of NFL scouts, as he hopes to be the next great quarterback to come out of the Mountain West Conference. Strong follows in the footsteps of Wyoming’s Josh Allen who has gone on to have a terrific career with the Bills.

The problem plaguing UNLV this season has been their secondary. It may not be the best matchup for the Rebels with Strong on the other side. We’ll see if they find an extra gear in a rivalry game, though. Quarterback Cameron Friel is tasked with keeping up with Strong. Head below for our free UNLV vs. Nevada pick on October 29, 2021.

UNLV Rebels vs. Nevada Wolf Pack Live Odds and Betting History:

The following odds are courtesy of BetOnline:

Teams Spread Moneyline Total
UNLV +20.5 (-115) +825 Over 58 (-105)
Nevada Wolf Pack -20.5 (-105) -1400 Under 58 (-115)
Team Data UNLV Nevada
Overall Record 0-7 5-2
ATS Record 5-2-0 5-2-0
Away/Home Record 0-3 3-0
ATS Away/Home 3-0-0 2-1-0
Points Per Game 19.6 35.7
Points Against Per Game 33.9 25
Passing Yards Per Game 178.4 379.4
Rushing Yards Per Game 118.3 79.9

UNLV vs. Nevada Prediction:

The Wolf Pack can’t run the ball, but that should be alright with Carson Strong versus the UNLV secondary. Strong has passed for 2,466 yards, 20 touchdowns, and 4 interceptions on 70.4% completions.

This doesn’t look like a good matchup for a UNLV secondary who are getting shredded by quarterbacks. The Wolf Pack are third in the FBS with 379.4 passing yards per game.

Meanwhile, the Rebels are one of the worst teams in the country against the pass with 289.3 allowed per game for 124th in the country. Overall, UNLV has conceded 33.9 points per game, which goes for 117th in the FBS.

As I said, the Wolf Pack have been horrible on the ground, but it’s not going to matter in this case. Nevada are going to keep the ball in the air with Strong and pick on a bad UNLV secondary.

The bad news for UNLV is that they haven’t played a quarterback like Strong and they’re giving up these bad numbers. It should be interesting to see what Strong can do versus this group. I’m sure it isn’t going to be good for the Rebels.


UNLV Rebels vs. Nevada Wolf Pack Betting Trends:

UNLV

  • 4-0-1 ATS in their previous five games as an underdog on the road
  • 6-2 ATS in their previous eight games
  • 14-5-2 ATS in their previous 21 games after failing to cover the spread
  • 0-10 overall in their previous ten games
  • 0-6 overall in their previous six games on the road

Nevada

  • 6-2 ATS in their previous eight games
  • 7-0 overall in their previous seven games at Nevada
  • 4-1 ATS in their previous five games versus the Mountain West Conference
  • 5-0 ATS in their previous five games after a loss
  • 4-1 ATS in their previous five games as a favorite at Nevada

UNLV’s Cameron Friel goes into this one with 2 touchdowns and 4 interceptions on 64% completions. The native of Hawaii is a freshman, with the coaching staff giving him the opportunity to get experience in meaningless competition. This isn’t a meaningless rivalry game for the Rebels, but at 0-7 UNLV isn’t playing for anything.

The Wolf Pack haven’t been amazing defensively or anything, but certainly satisfactory with 395.3 yards and 25 points allowed per game. They should be able to handle a freshman that only has experience against bad teams.

Nevada has beaten some quality opponents, including Cal, 22-17, and Boise State, 41-31. When they are interested, and I’m sure they will be in a rivalry matchup at home, the Wolf Pack can be a dangerous opponent.

I just can’t see the Rebels’ secondary doing anything to slow Strong down. I know, rivalry game, so take all of those points, but a mismatch could be in the works with a serious strength for Nevada up against serious weakness for Nevada. Look for a 45-20 win for Nevada in the Battle of Nevada and Fremont Cannon.

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