College Football Win Totals Betting Preview: American Athletic Conference East

We’ll go conference by conference and preview the college football win totals at



CINCINNATI BEARCATS: The Bearcats saw a dramatic improvement in their W/L record in the second year of the Luke Fickell regime. After bumbling to a 4-8 record in 2017 they improved to 11-2 in 2018. It’s almost impossible not to regress after a 7 win improvement both straight up and against the spread. Bearcats return 8 offensive starters and 7 defensive starters along with James Smith aka the best punter in FBS (44.3 net yards per punt). Even though it’s tough to see the Bearcats equaling or exceeding their 11 wins from a year ago it’s likewise tough to see them turning in a losing record. The 6.5 win total looks reasonable but no interest in laying the -300 juice. At +250 we’ll take a shot at a .500 season.


EAST CAROLINA PIRATES: It’s tough to recall a head coach that did such a thorough job of running a historically decent program into the ground than Scottie Montgomery. Montgomery replaced Ruffin McNeill in 2016 after earning a ton of respect as a quarterback coach/offensive coordinator at Duke. Montgomery never won more than three games in any of his three seasons at Vince McMahon’s alma mater compiling a brutal 9-26 record. Montgomery is now the offensive coordinator at Maryland while Mike Houston is the new head coach at ECU. Houston turned James Madison University into a monster at the FCS level and left with a three year record of 37-6. One thing that Montgomery did right was give a lot of playing time to underclassmen and they now welcome back 7 starters on each side of the ball. The over/under win total is 4.5 and the upgrade in coaching could be worth two wins alone.


SOUTH FLORIDA BULLS: USF has the dubious record of becoming the first team in AP poll history to lose six straight games after starting the season 7-0. Part of their season ending 0-6 swoon was a function of scheduling that frontloaded the weak part of of their schedule. At any rate, Charlie Strong cleaned house and replaced five assistants. The one we’re most interested in is former CFL standout quarterback Kerwin Bell who was brought in as offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach. Bell is an excellent coach who went 27-7 in three seasons at Division II Valdosta State including a 14-0 season and a D2 National championship last year. In the process, Valdosta State finished #4 in D2 total offense with 523.9 yards per game and a ridiculous 90 offensive touchdowns. That was 10 more TDs than their closest rivals and produced the #1 scoring offense in D2 at 52 PPG. The Bulls return 9 offensive starters including 4 linemen and starting quarterback as well as their top 3 wide receivers from last year. Not sure that Bell’s uptempo attack will do much when they step up in class but he’s got the talent to run weaker opponents off the field.


TEMPLE OWLS: It’s been hard for Temple to keep a head coach. Geoff Collins went 15-10 in two years at the helm but bolted for Georgia Tech at the end of the 2018 season. Manny Diaz was hired as his replacement–he lasted 17 days before accepting the vacant gig at the University of Miami. Now Rod Carey takes over after a nasty run at Northern Illinois where he went 52-29 for a sweet .642 winning percentage. Temple won 8 games last year, returns 7 starters on both sides of the ball and hired an excellent coach. Hard to imagine the team regressing much–if at all.


UCONN HUSKIES: Randy Edsall had a good run as coach of the UConn Huskies in the early 2000s and led the team to four straight winnings seasons in 2007 through 2010. Bob Diaco ran the program into the ground during his time there going 11-26 in three seasons. Edsall came back for his second stint and he’s not shown any signs of getting the team out of the toilet with a record of 3-9 in 2017 and 1-11 in 2018. Only 2 of the team’s 4 wins in 2017/2018 came against FBS level competition and they’re currently on a 17 game losing streak against FBS teams. Huskies return 16 starters including 10 on defense. Then again, not sure returning all your starters on a defense that finished dead last in D1 is a good thing. Huskies were not only the worst total defense in D1 but by a wide margin over the ‘second worst’ Oregon State Beavers. Beavers allowed 536.8 yards per game, but were ‘no match’ for the Huskies who allowed 617.4 yards per game. They were also dead last in opposing offensive touchdowns (78) total opponent touchdowns (81), yards per play (8.81), scoring defense (50.4 PPG allowed), rushing defense (335.0 YPG), rushing TDs allowed (45) and rushing yards per play (7.67). They also had the #111 scoring offense in D1. They should be able to beat FCS foe Wagner in their opening game but everything else is iffy.



UCF KNIGHTS: By now everyone knows that the Knights are an excellent team that has made a complete turnaround in four years. They were 0-12 in 2015 and 6-7 in 2016. They’ve lost 1 game since–in the2018 Sugar Bowl to LSU where they fell by 8 as a +7 underdog. The O/U total is 9 meaning they need a 10-2 record or better to cash. No real interest either way.

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