The new Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas will host the first showdown of the two biggest college football programs in the state of Nevada on Saturday. The Fremont Cannon matchup will also serve as the Nevada-UNLV rivalry debut for new Rebels head coach Marcus Arroyo.
Arroyo, who landed the UNLV job after a three-year stint as Oregon’s offensive coordinator, did not get off to a strong start in his head-coaching debut last week. The Rebels managed just six points against San Diego State, a sign that the program will likely require significant time and roster turnover before competing on a consistent basis. It’s a full rebuild, as they got laughed off the ball defensively by San Diego State last week, particularly in the first half.
UNLV did display some talent on offense. Running back Charles Williams rushed for 80 yards on 20 carries, no small accomplishment given the near-complete lack of a passing game and dearth of other playmakers on offense. Williams will presumably take centerstage for the Rebels again this week in their home opener.
The visiting Wolf Pack look far more competitive in their first game of the season, holding off Wyoming 37-34 a week ago. Quarterback Carson Strong completed 39 of his 52 passes for 420 yards and four touchdowns while connecting primarily with receivers Cole Turner (seven catches for 119 yards and two scores) and Romeo Doubs (12 catches for 117 yards and a touchdown). Nevada and its high-powered offense could reasonably become the second team in a row to hang 30-plus points on UNLV.
Nevada holds a slight edge in the all-time series with UNLV with a 26-19-0 record. However, UNLV has won the last two matchups.
Game Time/TV Channel/Streaming
You can watch Nevada vs. UNLV on Saturday, Oct. 31 at 10:15 p.m. ET on FS1, or you can stream it via the Fox Sports Go app with a cable or streaming service login.
Point Spread, Totals, Odds, Trends
Point spread: Nevada (-13.5) vs. UNLV
Point Total: Over 60
Money line: Nevada (-560), UNLV (+370)
- Western Kentucky has gone 32-39-1 against the spread since the start of 2015.
- The Hilltoppers have also hit the over 39 times and the under 33 times during that period.
- BYU has a 39-32-0 record against the spread since the start of 2015.
- Over that same span, the Cougars have hit the over 28 times, hit the under 41 times, and pushed once.
The Best Bet
UNLV’s offense remains in flux under Arroyo and will probably need more than last week’s game to iron out the issues. That should limit the total points enough to make the under the palatable move.
Pick: Under 59.5
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