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Western Kentucky-UTSA picks and best bets for the Conference USA Championship

The Western Kentucky Hilltoppers and UTSA Roadrunners meet this week in the Conference USA Championship. We break down all you need to know, including best bets, for the matchup.

UTSA Roadrunners tight end Leroy Watson runs in for a touchdown in the second half against the Southern Miss Golden Eagles at the Alamodome. Daniel Dunn-USA TODAY Sports

Championship weekend in college football will begin in San Antonio, TX, on Friday night as the UTSA Roadrunners welcome the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers to the Alamodome for the 2021 Conference USA Championship Game. This battle will kick off at 7 p.m. ET on CBS Sports Network.

UTSA (11-1, 7-1 C-USA) had the best season in program history this fall and drew a cult following within corners of the college football world. Led by rising head coaching star Jeff Traylor, the Roadrunners began the season with a win at Illinois before ripping right through its conference schedule. The went 11-0 and earned a spot in the College Football Playoff Top 25 rankings before falling to North Texas in its season finale last Saturday. The Roadrunners have been anchored by All-American running back Since McCormick and quarterback Frank Harris.

Western Kentucky (8-4, 7-1 C-USA) also ripped through its conference schedule this fall and earned its first league championship game berth since 2016 in interesting fashion. The Hilltoppers brought aboard Houston Baptist’s Zach Kittley to be the offensive coordinator and in turn, a handful of Houston Baptist offensive skill position players followed him to WKU. This move of essentially copy and pasting an entire offense worked as the the team averaged 43.3 points and 525.1 yards per game on 7.0 yards per play. Houston Baptist transfer quarterback Bailey Zappe was a game changer, completing 70% of his passes and throwing for nearly 5,000 yards and 52 touchdowns.

Here’s all the data you’ll want, and a pick for the game!

SP+ Rankings

Western Kentucky: 24th overall, 10th offense, 74th defense
UTSA: 55th overall, 48th offense, 61st defense

Injury update

Western Kentucky

No new injuries to report

UTSA

No new injuries to report

ATS/Total

Against The Spread

Western Kentucky: 9-3 ATS
UTSA: 8-4 ATS

Total

Western Kentucky: Over 8-4
UTSA: Over 6-6

Current lines at DraftKings Sportsbook

Spread: Western Kentucky -3.5
Total: 72.5
Moneyline: Western Kentucky -160, UTSA +140

Opening line: Western Kentucky -1
Opening total: 72.5

Weather

Weather isn’t a thing in the Alamodome! A nice room temperature of 72 degrees can be expected.

The Pick

Over 72.5

These two teams previously met in Bowling Green, KY, on October 9, a 52-46 UTSA win that saw the two teams combine for over 1,200 yards of total offense. We may not get the same level of fireworks on Friday that we saw in early October, but we may get close in a controlled environment with the conference title on the line. Bang the over.

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