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GAME PREVIEW: TULSA at SMU 

Friday’s ESPN late game features a matchup of two ACC also-rans that could produce a highlight reel of offensive fireworks. Last year, Tulsa had the perfect storm of returning seniors starters and outstanding skill position people and parlayed it into a 10-3 regular season and blowout of Central Michigan in the Miami Bowl. The Golden Hurricane is paying the price this year with a major rebuild and is just 2-6 on the year. Chad Morris continues his outstanding job at SMU and the Mustangs are 5-2 and gave TCU all it wanted in a 56-36 non-conference game in September. The line opened at SMU -10 and 74.5 but Tulsa and over money has moved the number to its current SMU -8.5 and 76 1/2. It will be a cool, overcast, and breezy night in Dallas for the 9:00 PM EST kickoff of The Deuce.

Last year, duel threat quarterback Dane Evans led a Tulsa offensive juggernaut that averaged better than 48 ppg. Evans was in the last cut of the Philadelphia Eagles and is now with Hamilton of the CFL so you know the guy could play. This year the Canes are a run only team that throws the ball as a last resort. They average 268 overland which is good but may need to the throw the ball here to exploit weaknesses in the SMU secondary. The Tulsa defense is abysmal and ranked No.129 overall and allowing 545 yards per game.

SMU has a backloaded schedule so they are right where they want to be with UCF, Navy, and Memphis on deck. The Mustang offense is well balanced averaging 183 (47th) ypg. on the ground and 313 (13th) ypg. through the air. Ben Hicks is a capable big play guy for the Stangs who has plenty of weapons to operate with. The SMU defense is tough against the run but has been suspect against the past allowing 284 ypg. through the air, sixth worst in the FBS.

This is a big game for SMU who has dropped three straight in the series and could have it’s bowl hopes riding on getting their sixth win here. The Golden Hurricane is 7-3 L10 as a road dog while SMU is 6-1 L7 as a home favorite, 3-0 this year. Four of the last five Tulsa games and three of the last four SMU games have gone under the total but keep in mind that Tulsa has been involved in three games that have seen between 90-108 points.

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