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Breaking Down The Best Bets To Win The AAC This College Football Season

Posted by on 8/14/2015 9:11:43 PM

The American Athletic Conference will undergo more change in its third season with the addition of Navy to the mix to increase the number of teams to 12. Cincinnati is undoubtedly the favorite to win the conference but with Memphis, Temple and Central Florida all in the mix the Bearcats will have their work cut out for them in 2015. Here is a look at the best bets on the board to win the AAC this season.

Cincinnati +260

The Cincinnati offense is loaded with eight returning starters including most importantly junior quarterback Gunner Kiel, who threw for 3,254 yards and a school-record 31 touchdowns in 2014. The Bearcats have the potential to put up some big numbers on the offensive side of the football but if there is one concern it would be on defense where last year’s unit regressed. Defensive variance can be difficult to predict from one season to the next and with just five returning starters on that side of the football Cincinnati will need at least one or two new starters to step up and help this group play at a higher level than it did last season in order to succeed.

Memphis Tigers +350

The Memphis offense averaged 36.2 points per game and will have eight returning starters as well including junior quarterback Paxton Lynch, who threw for 3,3031 yards and 22 touchdown passes last season. The Tigers came out of nowhere to win 10 games last season thanks in big part to their defense stepping up and they will need that unit to play at a high level with just three returning starters in order to challenge Cincinnati at the top of the AAC this season.

Temple +400

The Owls posted a .500 record last season but 19 starters return from that team including several on a defense that has the potential to be the best in the AAC this season. Temple gave up just 17.5 points per game last season and they will need to register a similar mark in order to have a shot in the AAC. The Owls will also need more from an offense that needs to be better after they scored 20 points or less in each of their last seven games last season. Some feel Temple is on the verge of something special but until we see it we can’t buy in to their stock as a title contender.

Central Florida +700

UCF has dominated conference opponents with a 15-1 overall record against the AAC over the last two seasons and it will be very interesting to see how they respond with the fewest returning starters on both sides of the football. The Knights will also have new coordinators on both sides of the football and in order to succeed they will really need junior quarterback Justin Holman to put up big numbers under center.

Houston +825

East Carolina will have too many new pieces to succeed so we like Houston as a sleeper pick to challenge for an AAC title this season. The Cougars return several starters including quarterback Greg Ward, who threw for over 2,000 yards and 12 touchdowns in just eight games last season. Houston will have a whole new coaching staff leading the way but there has been every indication they are on the right track and considering the talent is there we like them as a dark horse pick to win the AAC.

Consensus Best Bet: Cincinnati +260

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