The Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders will look to avoid their first 0-3 start to a season since 2011 when they take on the UTSA Roadrunners on Friday. It will be the Conference USA opener for both teams. The Blue Raiders (0-2) tied for fifth in the C-USA East Division with Florida International at 3-5 and were 4-8 overall in 2019. UTSA, meanwhile, tied for fourth in the C-USA West Division with Rice and North Texas at 3-5 and was also 4-8 overall.
The game is slated to start at 8 p.m. ET from the Alamodome in San Antonio and will be televised by CBS Sports Network. UTSA was 2-4 at home a year ago, while Middle Tennessee was 0-6 on the road. The Roadrunners are favored by seven points in the latest UTSA vs. Middle Tennessee odds from William Hill, while the over-under for total points scored is 60. Before making any Middle Tennessee vs. UTSA picks, check out the college football predictions from the SportsLine Projection Model.
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- Middle Tennessee vs. UTSA spread: UTSA -7
- Middle Tennessee vs. UTSA over-under: 60 points
- Middle Tennessee vs. UTSA money line: Middle Tennessee +205, UTSA -245
- MTSU: K Crews Holt is 30-for-39 on field goals in his career
- UTSA: Junior QB Frank Harris leads the FBS in rushing TDs (5).
Why UTSA can cover
The Roadrunners, who are receiving votes in the AP Top 25 poll for the first time, are led by Harris, who has completed 46 of 67 passes (68.7 percent) for 438 yards and two touchdowns. He has also carried 28 times for 155 yards and five scores. Last season, Harris started the first four games before suffering a season-ending arm injury. He completed 66 of 91 passes for 486 yards and three touchdowns, while rushing 39 times for 126 yards.
Sophomore wide receiver Joshua Cephus is Harris' top target with 14 receptions for 133 yards (9.5 average) and two touchdowns. Last season, Harris played in all 12 games, earning a start in five. He finished with eight catches for 153 yards (19.1) and a touchdown. His best game was against Southern Mississippi on Nov. 16 when he had a season-best 95 receiving yards on just three catches, including a 75-yard TD.
Why MTSU can cover
The Blue Raiders' defense has been gashed a bit through two games, but has a number of playmakers, including redshirt junior linebacker Cody Smith, who leads the team with two sacks for 14 yards. He also has registered 10 tackles, including nine solo, and has one forced fumble. Last season, Smith played in all 12 games, making two starts. He finished with 20 tackles, 1.5 tackles for loss and a pass breakup. He had a season-high six tackles at Michigan on Aug. 31.
Also leading the defense is senior safety Reed Blankenship, who leads Middle Tennessee with 15 tackles, including nine solo. Prior to the start of the season, Blankenship was named to the Bednarik Award and Jim Thorpe Award Watch Lists. He earned second-team All-Conference-USA honors a year ago when he started all seven games he played, recording 58 tackles, including 40 solo, with one forced fumble, one fumble recovery, three pass breakups and two interceptions.
How to make UTSA vs. MTSU picks
SportsLine's model is leaning under on the total. In fact, it says Harris will throw for fewer than 200 yards and one TD, while MTSU quarterback Asher O'Hara will be held to two touchdowns. It also says one side of the spread hits well over 60 percent of the time. You can only get the pick at SportsLine.
So who wins MTSU vs. UT-San Antonio? And which side of the spread hits well over 60 percent of the time? Visit SportsLine now to see which side of the UT-San Antonio vs. MTSU spread to back, all from the advanced model that is up over $3,800 on its top-rated college football spread picks, and find out.