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Navy San Diego State Betting – Poinsettia Bowl Offers A Study In Contrasts

Posted by Blake Frazier on 12/8/2010 1:39:25 PM

The Navy Midshipmen use the flexbone, a variation on the triple-option offense. The San Diego State Aztecs use a pro-style offense and like to throw the ball. Two styles clash in San Diego.

NCAA football betting: Navy Midshipmen vs. San Diego State Aztecs
Online Betting Odds: No line

Why To Bet On Navy

The Midshipmen are a hard team to prepare for. Navy flummoxed a very solid Missouri Tigers team in last year’s Texas Bowl. Coach Ken Niumatalolo has become an attractive candidate for bigger openings in the college football world because he’s sustained the success former boss Paul Johnson established at Navy several years ago. Navy’s flexbone offense is a headache for opposing defenses, as Missouri found out in the Midshipmen’s decisive win last December in Houston.

Navy will pose San Diego State problems, and as a team that knows how to play well against credentialed opponents – Navy almost won at the Ohio State Buckeyes in the 2009 season opener, and the program has beaten the Notre Dame Fighting Irish in two of the past three seasons – the Midshipmen will not be intimidated at all against San Diego State. Moreover, the presence of a major naval operations base in San Diego means that this will hardly feel like a road game for Navy. Plenty of sailors will fill the stands and cheer for the Midshipmen. This will not be a one-sided crowd at Qualcomm Stadium, the Aztecs’ home field.

Why To Bet On San Diego State

While Navy will run, run and run some more, San Diego State has the advantage of being balanced. Quarterback Ryan Lindley threw for over 500 yards in a late-season loss to the Utah Utes, and running back Ronnie Hillman has been a breakout star this year for the Aztecs, who are making their first appearance in a bowl game since 1998. San Diego State will have a very good opportunity to ring up a big number in this game. Navy’s defense isn’t as experienced as it has been over the past few years.

The Midshipmen and defensive coordinator Buddy Green have experienced more turnover and have had to rotate new bodies into key positions. Some mediocre offenses such as Duke and Central Michigan were able to score more than 33 points against Navy, and those feats were accomplished in Annapolis on Navy’s home field. San Diego State now gets the Midshipmen in San Diego, so Navy will be at an added disadvantage.

It’s also worth pointing out that SDSU head coach Brady Hoke is one of the best minds in college football. Hoke quickly fixed the Ball State program and led that school to a 12-0 regular season in 2008. Now, in two short years, he’s taken San Diego State to a bowl game and is quickly acquiring a reputation as a program-fixer. He’ll make SDSU very competitive in this game.

How The Game Will Play Out

This should be an offense-dominated game. Both defenses are likely to struggle against styles of offenses they don’t normally see. What will be the difference? Turnovers. That’s not surprising, but it’s reality. Both quarterbacks – Ricky Dobbs for Navy and Ryan Lindley for SDSU – are gifted but prone to lapses. The quarterback that plays a more airtight game will lead his team to victory. The verdict here is that Dobbs will outplay Lindley, leading Navy to the win.

Navy San Diego State Betting Pick: Navy

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