Two schools that prefer to run the football, Coach Sonny Dykes and the SMU Mustangs (-4) are preparing to take on their conference foe Tulane Green Wave at Gerald J. Ford Stadium. The vital afternoon matchup will get underway at 4:00 p.m. ET and fans can catch the action by tuning in to ESPNU.
Betting Preview: SMU Mustangs vs. Tulane Green Wave
The Green Wave approach this Saturday AAC game as the underdog and are currently being given 4 points. The Green Wave are also receiving +155 moneyline odds while the Mustangs are -175. Oddsmakers have determined the over/under (O/U) to be 71.5 points, and if one team can get out in front in the early stages, it will probably generate a worthy betting opportunity in-game.
The sharp action is siding with the Green Wave, as the line opened at -5. The O/U hasn’t changed after being set initially at 71.5.
The Green Wave are 8-3 against the spread (ATS) and are down 2.7 units so far in 2019. The team has posted an Over-Under record of 6-5.
The Mustangs have been a nice surprise for moneyline bettors this season, gaining 7.5 units. The team is 6-5 ATS and has an O/U record of 9-1-1.
The Green Wave have gone 6-5 straight up (SU), including 3-4 SU against AAC opponents. The Mustangs are 9-2 SU overall and are also 5-2 SU in conference play.
The Green Wave are most-recently on the rebound after a narrow 34-31 loss to UCF last week. Their D allowed the Knights to pass for 319 yards and two touchdowns while rushing for 165 yards and two scores. Otis Anderson logged a productive day for the Knights in that one with 49 rushing yards and a score on four attempts, along with 72 yards on three catches. On the offense, Justin McMillan completed only 13-of-27 passes for 181 yards and one touchdown. McMillan (102 rushing yards on 23 attempts) also led the ground attack and was complemented by Corey Dauphine (58 yards on 11 carries, two TDs). Darnell Mooney (four receptions, 43 yards) and Jalen McCleskey (three catches, 77 yards, one TD) shared the receiving duties in the defeat.
SMU just dropped a 35-28 game to Navy. The defense allowed the Midshipmen to rush for 378 yards on 73 attempts, including three rush TDs. Malcolm Perry torched the defense, putting up 195 rushing yards and two touchdowns on 38 attempts for Navy. For SMU, Shane Buechele completed 16-of-28 passes for 251 yards and two touchdowns. Xavier Jones (61 yards on 18 rush attempts, one TD) led the running game while James Proche (seven receptions, 60 yards, one TD) and CJ Sanders (three catches, 51 yards) led the pass-catching attack in the loss.
Tulane’s run the ball on 64.5 percent of its offensive possessions this year while SMU has a rush percentage of 52 percent. The Green Wave have run for 252.3 yards per game (including 240.4 per game against American Athletic Conference opponents) and have 31 scores on the ground this year. The Mustangs are totaling 184.9 rush yards per game (166.7 in conference) and have 31 total rushing TDs.
If the results so far this season can translate to this game, then it seems like the Mustangs should hold an edge when it comes to applying pressure. Their offensive line has yielded just 14 sacks while the D-line has logged 45 sacks. The Green Wave O-line has given up 20 sacks and their defense has sacked opposing QBs on just 15 occasions.
The Green Wave offensive scheme has tallied 202 yards/game through the air overall (211.6 per game against conference opposition) and has 16 passing scores so far. The Mustangs have put up 321.1 pass yards per game (335 against AAC competition) and have 30 total pass TDs.
Defensively, Tulane seems to have the upper hand when it comes to limiting the pass. The team has let opponents rush for an average of 161.5 yards and pass for 219.4 yards per game. The SMU defense has given up 288.8 yards per game to opposing passers and 147.4 yards per game on the ground. The Green Wave are giving up an adjusted net yards per pass attempt (ANY/A) of just 6.32 to opponents, while the Mustangs have allowed a 6.86 ANY/A.
Offensively, McMillan has put up 1,884 passing yards this season. He’s connected on 137-of-232 attempts with 14 scores through the air and nine interceptions. He has a 6.53 adjusted net yards per pass attempt overall, although that number sits at 3.34 over the last two outings.
Shane Buechele has completed 232-of-370 passes for 3,032 yards, 25 TDs and seven INTs for SMU. His ANY/A sits at 8.17 for the year and 10.03 over his last two outings.
When these two teams met a year ago, SMU earned the win 27-23.
Tulane Green Wave at SMU Mustangs NCAA Tip
SU Winner: SMU, ATS Winner: SMU, O/U: Over
Team Betting Notes
- The Over/Under for Tulane’s last game was set at 74. The under cashed in the team’s 34-31 loss to UCF.
- As a team, Tulane has produced 4.6 yards per carry over its last three games and 3.9 over its last two.
- SMU has averaged 4.7 yards per carry over its last three outings and 4.9 over its last two.
- The SMU offense has lost five fumbles this season while Tulane has let six get away.
- In its last three matchups, Tulane is 2-1 ATS and the under cashed in two of those three.
- Tulane has lost five of its last six games SU, with a 12-point win over Tulsa on November 2nd representing the only victory over that span.
- The O/U for SMU’s previous matchup going into it was 70.5. The under cashed in the 35-28 defeat to Navy.
- Over its last three contests, SMU is 0-3 ATS and the over cashed in two of those three.
- The Green Wave offense has created eight pass plays of 40 or more yards, while the Mustangs have accounted for 15 such plays.
- The Tulane defense has allowed eight pass plays of 40 or more yards, while SMU has given up 12 such plays.
- The Tulane offense has created 23 rushing plays of 20 or more yards, while SMU has created 17 such runs.
- The Green Wave defense has allowed 16 rushing plays of 20 or more yards, while the Mustangs have given up 20 such runs.
- The SMU defense has registered triple the sack total of Tulane this year (45 to 15).