NCAAF Lines Birmingham Bowl Preview: Auburn vs Memphis
Auburn was a terrific bet in 2013 when they made it to the national title game, performing 12-2 ATS. Since that time, though, they have only beat the spread 7 times in 25 contests. When they meet Memphis in the Birmingham Bowl, though, they are favored by 2.5 points in the NCAAF lines for this clash between the SEC and the American Athletic Conference. They meet on Wednesday at noon Eastern time.
— Auburn Football (@FootballAU) December 28, 2015
Why should you pick Auburn (-2.5)?
Auburn opened 4-2, beating a couple of teams heading to bowls while losing to LSU and Mississippi State. Auburn still looked competitive in the SEC West before losing at Arkansas in quadruple overtime and then to Ole Miss. Auburn did upset the Aggies but then fell to Georgia. They got within six points of Alabama in the Iron Bowl before losing 29-13. So they did lose six times this season, but they lost four of them by seven points or less. They were competitive in many of those six losses, going 2-3 ATS as underdogs, but in most situations they would also have covered against Arkansas and Alabama.
Why should you take Memphis (+2.5)?
Memphis grabbed national attention by opening 8-0, with impressive wins against MAC champ Bowling Green and Ole Miss (as well as three other teams who would head to bowls). However, they dropped three straight, to Navy, Houston and Temple. They did rout SMU 63-0 in the season finale, outgaining the Mustangs by 386 yards. They are 2-0 ATS this year when they have been underdogs, covering against Houston and beating Ole Miss.
Expert Pick and Final Score Prediction
Memphis lost their head coach when Justin Fuente accepted the Virginia Tech post, so they will be playing under an interim coach. They will, however, be trying to showcase Paxton Lynch, their phenomenal quarterback who will be entering the draft for the NFL next year. Auburn has had a much more moribund season, barely earning bowl eligibility.
My Pick: I like Memphis to win this game, 28-20.