Temple -4½ vs. Akron: Temple has been the Cinderella story so far this season: they’re currently sitting on top of the Mid America Conference standings with a 5-0 league mark, they’re bowl eligible for the first time since 1979, and they’re on a seven-game winning streak, the longest since 1973. Obviously, the Owls are vastly superior to the perennial Big East doormat that won a TOTAL of seven games from 2002 to 2005. Under Coach Al Golden, the Owls’ goal is to win the conference championship, and if they can keep winning, they’ll be in the title game. Akron has been abysmal this season. Their only win before last week’s 28-20 victory over Kent State was against FCS (Division 1AA) Morgan State. Moreover prior to last week’s win, the Zips were averaging just 13.7 points/game in MAC games. That won’t get it done against Temple. The Owls should be keyed up for this game after they allowed Miami-Ohio last week to come back in the fourth quarter. After three frames, Temple led 31-13, but let up and allowed the Red Hawks to come back before closing the game out, 34-32. Temple -4½
West Virginia at Cincinnati -9: Cincinnati is another team that is having a tremendous season – the Bearcats are off to their best start (9-0, 5-0 in the Big East) since 1951, when they won the Mid America Conference title. They’re also in the "BCS Buster" conversation with their perfect record, hoping to stay unbeaten and defy the pollsters. In Big East play, they’ve been dominant. Prior to last week’s game against Connecticut, the Bearcats demolished league foes by an average score of 37-12. But last week, they had to hang on against U-Conn, 47-45. In that contest, Cincy led 30-10 entering the third quarter, but couldn’t contain the Huskies in the second half. West Virginia has won two of the last three meetings with Cincinnati, but the Mountaineers this season doesn’t have the high-octane offense they’re accustomed to playing, and their scoring output has been off this season. That doesn’t bode well against a team that has found a new starting quarterback and a defense that gave up too many points last week. Cincinnati -9.