Liverpool vs Wolverhampton

Liverpool vs Wolverhampton ;Liverpool can stretch their lead at the top of the Premier League to four points by beating Wolverhampton Wanderers at Molineux on Friday night.

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The Reds are favourites with oddsmakers despite Wolves enjoying a three-match winning streak. It’s a run good enough to put the west Midlands side a point adrift of Manchester United and a place in the top six.

Liverpool are dealing with defensive injuries, with Joe Gomez, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Joel Matip all set to miss out.

Liverpool have hit peak form in recent matches. They put four past Bournemouth away from home on December 8, before beating bitter rivals Manchester United 3-1 at Anfield on Sunday.

Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane have been among the goals, and their pace is sure to stretch Wolves’ back three. It will be important for wing-backs such as Matt Doherty to double up with centre-backs in wide areas.

Liverpool’s defence will need a reshuffle of personnel amid the injuries. The London Evening Standard‘s Tom Doyle reported utility midfielder James Milner is a doubt while Gomez and Matip will miss out.

Meanwhile, manager Jurgen Klopp has indicated right-back Alexander-Arnold won’t be fit:

Gomez and Matip missing out means Dejan Lovren will again partner Virgil van Dijk at the heart of the Liverpool defence.

Van Dijk has gone from strength to strength this season and was irrepressible against United.

The Dutchman will face a different challenge this week in the form of Raul Jimenez. The Mexico international, on loan from Benfica, has been the creative and goalscoring fulcrum for the hosts:

Support from Wolves manager Nuno Espirito Santo has been credited with helping revive the 27-year-old’s career:

Jimenez has been deciding matches in the final third but may struggle to undermine the stingiest defence in England’s top flight. The Reds have shipped a mere seven goals through 17 matches.

If Van Dijk continues to hold things together at the back, Liverpool’s firepower will eventually prove decisive.

What will concern Klopp and the league leaders is Wolves’ record against the division’s big boys this season. They drew with Manchester City and beat Chelsea at home, while drawing away fixtures against Manchester United and Arsenal.

Wolves can keep this close, but Liverpool have the quality at both ends to bank three more priceless points in the title race.

BYU vs Western michigan

BYU vs Western michigan ;Rarely does a .500 team enter its bowl game as a double-digit point favorite, but that’s the case with BYU in the Idaho Potato Bowl.

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The Cougars won two of their final three regular-season contests just to become bowl eligible, while Western Michigan closed its MAC slate with one win in its last four.

Kalani Sitake’s program missed out a bowl game a year ago, but when they have participated in postseason games this decade, the Cougars have primarily stayed in the Mountain and Pacific time zones.

The Broncos are making their second trip to Boise, Idaho in five years, as they fell to Air Force in the 2014 edition of the game.

Both teams already eclipsed their win totals from a year ago, so a victory Friday afternoon would serve as an added boost heading into 2019.

Before you lay a single penny down on the Idaho Potato Bowl, there are a few things you need to take into consideration.

For starters, taking a 6-6 team as a 12-point favorite is about as bizarre a decision you could make during bowl season.

When you realize BYU possesses the 110th-best offense in the FBS, you should question your betting selection even more.

With freshman quarterback Zach Wilson at the helm, the Cougars averaged 199.6 passing yards per game, which ranks 95th in the nation.

BYU’s rushing attack isn’t any better, as its leading rusher Lopini Katoa gained 423 yards on the ground.

Where the Cougars gain your betting trust back is on defense, as they carry the 13th-best team defense in the FBS into Albertsons Stadium.

The unit led by linebacker Sione Takitaki and defensive lineman Khyiris Tonga will be tasked with silencing a Western Michigan offense that’s capable of putting up impressive numbers on occasion.

The Broncos are also led by a freshman signal-caller in Kaleb Eleby, who took over as starter at the end of October after Jon Wassink suffered an injury.

Eleby’s produced decent statistics in four games, but he hasn’t done anything to blow anyone away quite yet.

The player with the most potential to break a big play is Western Michigan running back LeVante Bellamy, who has 1,172 yards on 190 carries.

Bellamy and Jamauri Bogan, who has 15 rushing touchdowns, form a solid 1-2 punch out of the backfield for the Broncos, but they could have trouble Friday against a BYU defense that will focus on stopping the run first.

Even if the BYU defense dominates the contest, Western Michigan still has the potential to flip the game on its head in an instant, which is something you can’t say about the Cougars.

After saying all that, if you still want to take BYU to win by double digits, that’s a risk you’re taking on your own, despite being warned against it.

BYU won’t cover, but it’ll come out on top Friday by limiting Western Michigan’s offensive production.

BYU’s defense will impose its will during a low-scoring first half, and its offense should gain some confidence moving down the field in the final two quarters.

Wilson eventually turns into the difference-maker with one or two big plays through the air to lead BYU to a 7-6 campaign.

Wolverhampton vs Liverpool

Wolverhampton vs Liverpool :Wolves winger Diogo Jota is ruled out because of the hamstring problem that forced him off against Bournemouth.

Head coach Nuno Espirito Santo has no other new injury concerns.

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Liverpool right-back Trent Alexander-Arnold is again set to miss out with a sprained ankle, but he should return over the festive period.

James Milner, who sat out Sunday’s victory versus Manchester United because of a minor muscle problem, is expected to be available.

Wolves legend Slater dies aged 91

Liverpool can complete Premier League season unbeaten, claims Lovren

MOTD COMMENTATOR’S NOTES

@SimonBrotherton: Liverpool head to Molineux for the first of two trips in the space of two and a half weeks, knowing a win will leave them in top spot on Christmas Day.

The previous four sides to lead the way on 25 December have gone on to win the title. The last team not to were Liverpool themselves.

With 25 points, Wolves have already matched their tally from the whole of their most recent Premier League campaign in 2011-12.

Their record against the established top six this season has also been excellent. The only defeat in five such games came at home to Tottenham, and they have beaten Chelsea while taking a point off both Manchester clubs and Arsenal.

VIEW FROM THE DUGOUT

Wolves head coach Nuno Espirito Santo on the team’s improved form: “It makes you proud that when you have a bad moment and you get out of it, the way we did it, credit to the players – we solved it.

“It doesn’t mean it can’t happen again, but we are ready.

“They [Liverpool] are top of the league, it says we’re going to face one of the best teams in Europe. We look forward to it.”

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp on Wolves: “What they did last year in the Championship, I am not sure that happened too often.

“Very often you go up with this kind of old-school British football – it’s a tough league and it makes sense to do it – [but] the only two teams [in] the last few years that did it differently were Huddersfield and now Wolves, so that’s unbelievable.

“Then they brought in players again and needed a bit of time so that everything fits. Now they are really strong again, they won the last three; we have to go there and be at our best again.”

LAWRO’S PREDICTION

We have already seen Manchester City and Chelsea drop points at Molineux this season, but I am backing Liverpool to leave with three points.

Prediction: 1-2

MATCH FACTS

Head-to-head

Wolves have beaten Liverpool in two of the last five meetings, with both of those wins coming at Anfield – including in the FA Cup fourth round last year.

However, their last win against the Reds at Molineux was on 29 August 1981. Liverpool, then reigning European champions, gave debuts to Mark Lawrenson and Bruce Grobbelaar in that game, which they lost 1-0.

Wolves are winless in four Premier League home meetings, with their only goal a 90th-minute equaliser from Kenny Miller in a 1-1 draw on 21 January 2004.

Wolverhampton Wanderers

Wolves are looking to win four consecutive top-flight games for the first time since a similar sequence from December 1971 to January 1972. That streak ended with a goalless draw against Liverpool at Molineux.

They have 25 points this season, equal to their total tally in their most recent Premier League campaign in 2011-12.

Wolves have lost 11 successive top-flight games played on a Friday. Their last win on a Friday came against Sunderland in April 1965.

None of Wolves’ last 20 Premier League goals have been scored by an Englishman, with the most recent netted by Matt Jarvis in 2012.

The only other club for whom an Englishman has not scored a Premier League goal this season, excluding own goals, is Newcastle; Harrow-born Ciaran Clark has netted for the Magpies but is a Republic of Ireland international.

Liverpool

Liverpool’s haul of 45 points from their opening 17 league games is their best at this stage of a top-flight campaign.

The Reds have won their last five games in league and cup.

They have earned seven successive league victories against newly-promoted sides, scoring a total of 23 goals and conceding just twice.

The team top of the table on Christmas Day has gone on to win the title in 14 of the 26 previous Premier League seasons, and in eight of the last nine campaigns (the exception being Liverpool in 2013-14).

Wolves will be the 27th different side Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has faced in the Premier League – he has beaten all previous 26 opponents at least once.

Mohamed Salah has been directly involved in 10 goals in eight Premier League appearances against newly-promoted teams for the Reds, with five goals and five assists.

Jordan Henderson could make his 300th appearance for the Reds in all competitions.

Western Michigan vs BYU

Western Michigan vs BYU ; The 2018 Famous Idaho Potato Bowl features a matchup between the BYU Cougars (6-6) and Western Michigan Broncos (7-5) at Albertsons Stadium in Boise on Friday. Kickoff is scheduled for 4 p.m. ET and both teams covered in their last game.

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The latest BYU vs. Western Michigan odds have the Cougars as 12-point favorites, while the over-under for total points scored is 50. It’s a matchup between an explosive offense and a stingy defense, so before you lock in any BYU vs. Western Michigan picks and predictions for the 2018 Idaho Potato Bowl, you’ll want to hear what SportsLine data scientist Stephen Oh has to say.

The renowned co-founder of AccuScore enters bowl season on an impressive 16-9 run on his college football picks, and he has had an especially keen eye for the tendencies of BYU. In fact, he’s on an impressive 6-1 run on college football against-the-spread picks involving the Cougars. Anyone who has followed him is way up.

Now he has evaluated the latest 2018 Famous Idaho Potato Bowl odds and crunched the numbers for every possible scenario for Western Michigan vs. BYU. You can only see his Idaho Potato Bowl picks over at SportsLine.

Oh knows that Western Michigan will want use its dynamic offense to control the tempo of the game. The Broncos are averaging nearly 450 yards and rank 30th in the nation in total offense. They’re led by running back LeVante Bellamu, who rushed the ball 190 times this season for 1,172 yards and seven total touchdowns.

Controlling the tempo was perhaps best exemplified in their overtime loss against Ball State earlier this season on the road. The Broncos ran the ball 67 times for 361 yards and four touchdowns. If they can assert themselves like that against Brigham Young, they’ll have a strong chance of covering the spread.

But just because Western Michigan features an explosive offense doesn’t mean it can stay within the 12-point Potato Bowl spread.

BYU boasts a stingy defense that has held its opponents to 21 or points or fewer in four of its past five games. The Cougars also rank inside the top 20 in total defense, allowing just 325 yards per game. And their offense has found a rhythm late in the season, averaging over 35 points in their final three games.

Oh has analyzed this matchup from every possible angle and while we can tell you he’s leaning over, he has discovered a crucial x-factor that makes one side of the spread a must-back. He’s only sharing what it is, and who to back, at SportsLine.

So, who wins BYU vs. Western Michigan? And what crucial x-factor causes one side of the spread to hit hard? Visit SportsLine now to see which side you need to jump all over at the 2018 Idaho Potato Bowl, all from the data scientist who has nailed six of his past seven picks involving the Cougars, and find out.

Potato Bowl

Idaho Potato Bowl 2018: Western Michigan vs. BYU TV Schedule, Time and Odds..Rarely does a .500 team enter its bowl game as a double-digit point favorite, but that’s the case with BYU in the Idaho Potato Bowl. 

The Cougars won two of their final three regular-season contests just to become bowl eligible, while Western Michigan closed its MAC slate with one win in its last four.

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Kalani Sitake’s program missed out a bowl game a year ago, but when they have participated in postseason games this decade, the Cougars have primarily stayed in the Mountain and Pacific time zones.

The Broncos are making their second trip to Boise, Idaho in five years, as they fell to Air Force in the 2014 edition of the game.

Both teams already eclipsed their win totals from a year ago, so a victory Friday afternoon would serve as an added boost heading into 2019.

Before you lay a single penny down on the Idaho Potato Bowl, there are a few things you need to take into consideration.

For starters, taking a 6-6 team as a 12-point favorite is about as bizarre a decision you could make during bowl season.

When you realize BYU possesses the 110th-best offense in the FBS, you should question your betting selection even more.

With freshman quarterback Zach Wilson at the helm, the Cougars averaged 199.6 passing yards per game, which ranks 95th in the nation.

BYU’s rushing attack isn’t any better, as its leading rusher Lopini Katoa gained 423 yards on the ground.

Where the Cougars gain your betting trust back is on defense, as they carry the 13th-best team defense in the FBS into Albertsons Stadium.

The unit led by linebacker Sione Takitaki and defensive lineman Khyiris Tonga will be tasked with silencing a Western Michigan offense that’s capable of putting up impressive numbers on occasion.

The Broncos are also led by a freshman signal-caller in Kaleb Eleby, who took over as starter at the end of October after Jon Wassink suffered an injury.

Eleby’s produced decent statistics in four games, but he hasn’t done anything to blow anyone away quite yet.

The player with the most potential to break a big play is Western Michigan running back LeVante Bellamy, who has 1,172 yards on 190 carries.

Bellamy and Jamauri Bogan, who has 15 rushing touchdowns, form a solid 1-2 punch out of the backfield for the Broncos, but they could have trouble Friday against a BYU defense that will focus on stopping the run first.

Even if the BYU defense dominates the contest, Western Michigan still has the potential to flip the game on its head in an instant, which is something you can’t say about the Cougars.

After saying all that, if you still want to take BYU to win by double digits, that’s a risk you’re taking on your own, despite being warned against it.

BYU won’t cover, but it’ll come out on top Friday by limiting Western Michigan’s offensive production.

BYU’s defense will impose its will during a low-scoring first half, and its offense should gain some confidence moving down the field in the final two quarters.

Wilson eventually turns into the difference-maker with one or two big plays through the air to lead BYU to a 7-6 campaign.

Florida intl vs Toledo

Florida intl vs Toledo ; We’ve had bowl games with weird sponsors basically since we started playing bowl games. We had the Aviation Bowl in Dayton. The Will Rogers Bowl. The Refrigerator Bowl. We’ve had modern bowls with bizarre sponsors, from lawnmowers to Bitcoin. Hell, even the most regal game of all has done weirdo things — I’m looking at you, Rose Bowl camel race.

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The Bahamas Bowl, a game in a track stadium in a country that doesn’t really play football, has a new sponsor, after the venerable Popeyes bowed out.

But the new sponsor, Makers Wanted, isn’t a fly by night internet company. It isn’t a shady bank or a fried chicken franchise.

It’s a town 1,320 miles away from the Bahamas. Elk Grove Village, a Chicago suburb out by the airport, hopes to drum up business for its industrial park.

Even in a sport that doesn’t make sense … that really doesn’t make sense, right?

So I drove to Elk Grove to investigate. Surely there’s something tropical there that I’ve missed, which would help connect the sponsor and the bowl.

The weather had warmed up in Chicago, which meant it was in the high 30s with a drizzle, just enough to make you uncomfortable, but not enough to thaw out the snowbanks or conjure the Caribbean.

Even at 11 a.m. on a Thursday, traffic on Interstate 90 slowed to a stop, as much a fixture of Chicagoland as hot dogs and bitching about the Bulls’ management. I had to pay a toll. There were no steel drums. Nobody to offer me a fruity drink. It’s the sort of drive that people go on tropical vacations to get away from.

After about 40 minutes, I reached Elk Grove Village, which looked an awful lot like most other Chicago suburbs: decidedly not tropical

Toledo vs Florida Intl

Toledo vs Florida Intl : One lucky MAC team and one lucky C-USA team leave the country every year to play in college football’s only active annual game outside of United States boundaries. Two first-time Bahamas Bowl participants, Toledo (7-5) and FIU (8-4) will duke it out in Nassau in one of two MAC vs. Conference USA matchups of 2018’s bowl season.

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The Rockets slid a bit from their pedestal, posting their worst regular season since 2013 after winning the 2017 MAC Championship. Toledo is in its fifth-straight bowl game, qualifying for bowl eligibility every year since 2010. This decade, the Rockets have three bowl wins and one under head coach Jason Candle (2015 Boca Raton Bowl vs. Temple).

Toledo ended 2018 strong, winning four of its last five after a 3-4 start. Candle’s program is one of 12 in the nation to average over 40 points per contest, ranking second in the MAC behind Ohio with 41.1. The Rockets defeated just two teams that qualified for bowl season, 7-5 Nevada and 7-5 Western Michigan. However, all five of Toledo’s losses occurred against teams with seven victories or more in 2018.

The Rockets’ opponent, FIU, has evolved into a steady winner since the veteran Butch Davis was named head coach prior to the 2017 season. Davis finished 8-5 last season with a bowl loss against Temple, but his team replicated its 2017 success in hopes of earning the program’s first bowl win since 2010. FIU’s only bowl win in history was that year’s Little Caesars Pizza Bowl, ironically, against Toledo. The teams have not met since.

But Toledo is very familiar with FIU’s starting quarterback. James Morgan transferred down south from Bowling Green last offseason, and he’s achieved plenty of success with the Panthers. Morgan threw for 26 touchdowns and just seven interceptions, improving his completion percentage from 45.3% at his final year in Bowling Green to 65.3%. Morgan lost his previous start against the Falcons’ archrival in 2016, but the quarterback put up a ridiculous stat-line that featured 335 passing yards and a career-high five touchdown passes.

Toledo will start sophomore Illinois transfer Eli Peters, who started each of the Rockets final five games. Peters does not bring the mobility factor like the previous starter Mitchell Guadagni, but Peters has a strong arm and excelled on deep throws during the final stretch of the year. He’s assisted by a dominant receiving corps which features two First Team All-MAC selections in Cody Thompson and Diontae Johnson.

Thompson has been catching passes for Toledo since 2014, and Friday will be his final game with the program. Several other Rocket seniors to keep your eyes on include wide receiver Jon’Vea Johnson, defensive end Tuzar Skipper, defensive tackle Reggie Howard, and free safety Josh Teachey.

The programs met three consecutive years from 2008-10, with the final matchup occurring in Detroit for the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl. The road team won each game in the 2008 and 2009 home-and-home series, before FIU narrowly took home hardware in Detroit in 2010 after a 34-32 victory.

Fun Bahamas Bowl facts

The official name of the event is the Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl. “Makers Wanted” actually isn’t a brand or corporation but rather a slogan of Elk Grove Village, an industrial park located in Eastern Illinois. Yes, a small town in Illinois sponsors a bowl game in the Bahamas.

The Bahamas Bowl didn’t have a sponsor last year, but the sponsor from 2014-16 was Popeyes, the Louisiana based chicken and biscuit fast food chain. There are actually three Popeyes locations in the Bahamas. Also, this tweet needs to be brought up every year because it’s impossible to watch the following GIF without shedding a tear:

Lou Holtz was in the announcing booth for the first-ever Bahamas Bowl, his final call ever with ESPN. That game ended up being one of the best finishes in college football history, as Central Michigan rallied back from a 49-14 deficit in the last 12 minutes of the fourth quarter. On the final play of regulation, Chippewas quarterback Cooper Rush launched a Hail Mary to Jesse Kroll, and three laterals later, wide receiver Titus Davis scored on the 75-yard miracle. However, Western Kentucky won 49-48 because of a failed 2-point attempt.

The MAC’s last two bowl wins were in the Bahamas Bowl as of Wednesday morning on December 19, 2018 (2015 Western Michigan and 2017 Ohio).

There are no laws at the Bahamas Bowl. Well, there are technically laws, but please check out this Reddit thread, where several attendees of last year’s Ohio-UAB game tell the tale of the unique atmosphere. Quotes from posters supermav27 and cunninghamc16 include:

Brought beer right in to the stadium. The locals at the gate didn’t even ask to check tickets. One of them took a sip of my beer.We walked all the way around the stadium, until we reached a fenced off area. A Royal Bahamas Defense Force guard said we should check behind the fence, because he doesn’t know what’s back there. Upon walking past the fence, we ended up in the Ohio locker room. No questions asked.A drunk fan just walked on to the sideline and high fived a player. He then high fived a Royal Bahamian Defense Force soldier when walking back. The soldier couldn’t stop laughing.There’s like 20 entrances to this stadium, and only like 10 of them are guarded. Literally anyone could walk in here.The entertainment on the outskirts of the stadium right next to concessions includes ARCHERY. I saw a child as small as 4 getting help aiming an actual bow and arrow at a target 20 ft away.

Prediction

Toledo’s last bowl game was one every Rocket would like to forget. After failing to score a single point against Appalachian State in the 2017 Dollar General Bowl, expect Toledo to come out with plenty of fire.

The Rockets present the better offense, having a dynamic passing attack with wide receivers of all different talents. With the exception of the loss to MAC champion Northern Illinois, Toledo’s offense dominated during the second half of the season while FIU showed some lapses, specifically in a 49-14 loss to 5-7 Florida Atlantic.

The Rockets actually scored 45 or more points in all seven wins and at least 51 in six of them. If Toledo’s offense gets in the slightest groove, things will be dangerous for FIU’s defense. The Panthers’ defense didn’t have the most phenomenal close to the season, allowing 35 to Charlotte and 28 in a loss to Marshall.

Toledo only had two wins over bowl eligible competition, but FIU faced just four teams with a winning record this year and lost to three of those games. The Rockets will make amends for last year and win by two scores in Nassau.

Prediction: Toledo 42, FIU 32

Bahamas Bowl

Bahamas Bowl ; The Panthers went 8-5 in Davis’ debut last year but fell 28-3 to Temple in the Gasparilla Bowl. FIU followed up that strong 2017 campaign with another eight-win regular season, including a victory over C-USA East Division champ MTSU (24-21). When the Panthers knock Toledo on Dec. 21, the program could exceed eight victories for the first time in school history.

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And with the job Davis is doing on the recruitment path, FIU is poised to become an yearly factor in C-USA’s East Division. Toledo and FIU have three preceding meetings. The Panthers hold a 2-1 series advantage in these games. These two programs met from the 2010 Little Caesars Pizza Bowl, with FIU winning a 34-32 thriller. Jason Candle continued to cement his place as a rising star in the coaching ranks by guiding Toledo into a 7-5 finish in the regular season.

The Rockets won the MAC title last fall but opened the year with different employees voids to deal with, such as at Orientation with the departure of Logan Woodside. Candle’s team started 3-4, but the four defeats came at the hands of Miami, Fresno State, Buffalo and Eastern Michigan — all bowl groups. Toledo closed by winning four out of its last five matchups, with its only loss coming to Northern Illinois (38-15) on Nov. 7. Despite dropping Woodside, the Rockets have maintained a high-powered attack.

Candle’s offense averaged 41.1 points a game and 6.2 yards a snap at the regular season. The only Real Bowl game played out of the United States takes place on Friday, as Toledo and FIU meet in Nassau for the Bahamas Bowl. The pairing between the Panthers and Rockets is your fifth matchup inside this bowl’s history, but this game has offered some memorable and intriguing games since its inception in 2014. Additionally, some convention bragging rights will also be online. Over this bowl initial four matchups, Conference USA and the MAC have split the games at two victories apiece.

Kickoff: Friday, Dec. 21 at 12:30 p.m. ET

TV Channel: ESPN

Spread: Toledo -6

FIU vs Toledo

FIU vs Toledo: odds, line: 2018 Bahamas Bowl picks, top predictions from advanced model on 45-25 run..SportsLine’s advanced computer has simulated the 2018 Bahamas Bowl 10,000 times..

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The Panthers and will try to end their recent postseason struggles when they meet on Friday in the 2018 Bahamas Bowl. Kickoff is set for 12:30 p.m. ET from Thomas Robinson National Stadium. The Rockets (7-5), who finished tied for second in the MAC’s West Division, have yet to win a bowl game since Jason Candle succeeded Matt Campbell as head coach, losing two straight to . Florida International (8-4), which tied for second in Conference USA’s East Division, has become bowl-eligible in each of its first two seasons under coach Butch Davis, but came up short last year against . The Rockets are touchdown favorites, up from an opener of -6, in the current Toledo vs. Florida International odds. The over-under for total points scored has plummeted to 57 after opening at 66.5. Before you lock in your 2018 Bahamas Bowl predictions and Toledo vs. FIU picks, check out what the SportsLine Projection Model has to say.

The SportsLine Projection Model simulates every FBS game 10,000 times, and those who have followed it have seen massive returns. Over the past three years, this proprietary computer model has generated a jaw-dropping $4,210 profit for $100 bettors on its top-rated point-spread picks.

The model made some huge calls during Championship Week, including (-16.5) against and (-9.5) against . And when it comes to all top-rated picks, the model has been red-hot, entering the 2018 college football bowl season on a blistering 45-25 run. This same model has also nailed almost 70 percent of bowl picks straight up over the past three years. Anybody who has followed it is way, way up.

Now, it has analyzed the latest 2018 Bahamas Bowl odds and crunched the numbers. We can tell you it is leaning to the over. The model has also generated a point-spread selection that hits in nearly 60 percent of simulations. That 2018 Bahamas Bowl pick is only available at SportsLine.

The model knows that although the Rockets are known for engaging in shootouts, an improved defense was a major part of their late-season success. They ended up with 87 tackles for loss, with defensive tackle and defensive end leading the way.

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Candle is seen as a rising prospect in the coaching ranks. He took over for Campbell, who has seen his reputation skyrocket while guiding a turnaround at . Candle has yet to lead the Rockets to a bowl win, but his national profile is sure to improve if Toledo wins the Bahamas Bowl 2018.

The Rockets will need a complete performance in order to cover the Bahamas Bowl spread against a Florida International club that has proven efficient on both sides of the ball.

The Panthers, who finished second in the Conference USA East Division, feature a balanced offense that puts up 247.6 passing yards and 170.3 rushing yards per game. They have shown their own share of firepower, scoring at least 36 in each of their past four wins.

FIU junior quarterback has completed 65.3 percent of his attempts for 2,727 yards and 26 touchdowns against seven interceptions. The Panthers have four players who have gained at least 246 rushing yards and have three scoring runs of 51 or more yards. Their defense, meanwhile, allows 24.7 points per game and has held four opponents to 20 points or fewer.

FIU has covered nine of 11 games against FBS opponents this season. The teams have a nearly identical point differential, with FIU at plus-6.6 and Toledo at 6.2.

Who wins Toledo vs. FIU? And which side of the spread hits in nearly 60 percent of simulations? , and find out.