Las Vegas Bowl Preview and Pick

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Las Vegas Bowl Preview and Pick: BYU Cougars vs. Oregon Ducks ]]> include($base_url . “/includes/header.htm”); ?>

Brigham Young Cougars (10-2) -4, o/u 60.5 vs. Oregon Ducks (7-5) on Thursday, December 21, 2006 at 8 p.m. Eastern on ESPN
by Ultimatecapper.com Staff

The BYU Cougars come into this game riding a 9 game winning streak after starting the season 1-2. As previous Cougar teams they sport a high powered offense that is averaging over 42 points per game in their last 3 games.

The Oregon Ducks come into the game with 3 straight losses in which they have given up and average of 34 points per game. The Ducks started the season at 4-0 but struggled once they entered conference play.

The Cougars, winners of the Mountain West Conference, capped off the season by going undefeated in Conference play. BYU will be playing in their first bowl in 5 years as they have struggled with losing records in the previous 4 years.

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The Ducks, tied for 5th in the Pacific 10 Conference, will be making their 4 bowl trip in the last 5 years. They are 0-3 in those bowl games losing to Wake Forest (2002), Minnesota (2003) and Oklahoma (2005).

These two teams have not met since 1990 when Oregon came away with a 32-16 victory. They both lost to the only common opponent they had this year as Arizona beat BYU 16-13 and they also beat Oregon 37-10.

BYU was very good to those that supported them this year as they had a 9-3 record against the spread. Oregon was 5-5 against the number this year.

The Cougars are led by Senior QB John Beck who had a great year completing 70.3% of his passes and throwing for 3,503 yards this season. He has thrown for 29 touchdowns with only 6 interceptions this season.

The Ducks are led by Junior QB Dennis Dixon who has a 61.9% completion rate and has thrown for 2,021 yards this season. He has 11 touchdowns and has thrown 13 interceptions.

BYU averages 140 yards rushing per game and their defense only allows 116 yards rushing per game. Oregon has a rushing advantage over their opponents by a margin of 189-150.

The Cougars rank 6th in scoring offense in Division 1 (out of 119 teams) by averaging 36.7 points per game. Oregon is ranked 17th in scoring offense by averaging 31.2 points per game.

BYU is ranked 5th in total yards per game with 458.6 yards per game. Oregon is ranked 8th with an average of 436.4 yards per game.

The Cougar defense is ranked 16th giving up an average 16.2 points per game. The Duck’s defense is ranked 84th giving up an average 25.6 points per game.

BYU’s defense is ranked 51st in total yards by giving up an average of 324.1 yards per game. Oregon is ranked 29th giving up only 303.2 yards per game.

BYU averages 6.8 yards per play while giving up an average of 4.9 yards per play. Oregon averages 5.9 YPP while giving up 4.9 YPP.

The Over/Under is 8-4 in BYU games this season, 7-3 in Oregon games.

The Sagarin PREDICTOR ratings at USAToday.com rank the Cougars #21 at 83.50. Oregon ranks #22 at 83.44.

The opening line on this game was BYU -4.5 with a total of 60. The line has been bet down to BYU -4 and the total is up to 60.5. At the time of this writing the betting public was backing Oregon by a margin of 57%-43%.

The Ultimatecapper Prediction: We like the Oregon Ducks here plus the points.

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Jay has been watching and following sports since he could walk and turned to betting in his late teens. His favorite sport is MLB and has been producing winners on UltimateCapper for over 15 years. Follow Jay's free sports picks and enjoy the winners.