2018 AutoNation Cure Bowl Betting Preview: Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns vs. Tulane Green Wave – December 15, 2018

by | Dec 15, 2018 | NCAA Football

Matchup at a Glance

When: Saturday, December 15, 2018, at 1:30 PM
Where: Camping World Stadium in Orlando, FL.
Point Spread: Tulane Green Wave -3
Betting Total: 59

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The 2018 AutoNation Cure Bowl will take place on Saturday, December 15, 2018, and will feature the Sun Belt Conferences Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns taking on The American Conferences Tulane Green Wave.

The AutoNation Cure Bowl is being played at the Camping World Stadium in Orlando, Florida with the kickoff scheduled to take place at 1:30 PM ET on CBS Sportsnet.

Xbet has set the point spread for this game at Tulane Green Wave -3 and has set the total for the over/under plays at 59 points.

AutoNation Cure Bowl History

The AutoNation Cure Bowl is in its fourth year and is one of the newer bowl games played during this year's bowl season. Last year, we witnessed the Georgia State Panthers beat the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers by the score of 27-17. Ironically, every year this bowl has been played, it has played under the posted total.

The following are the previous AutoNation Cure Bowl game history:

  • Dec. 16, 2017 – Georgia State Panthers 27 – Western Kentucky Hilltoppers 17
  • Dec. 17, 2016 – Arkansas State Red Wolves 31 – UCF Knights 13
  • Dec. 19, 2015 – San Jose State Spartans 27 – Georgia State Panthers 16

Previous Matchups

This will be the 27th time that these two teams have played each other. The Green Wave have totally dominated the series winning 22 out of 26 previous matchups over Louisiana-Lafayette.

These two last met up in 2016, where the Green Wave won the game 41-39 in overtime. Prior to that matchup, their last game was in the 2013 R+L New Orleans Bowl, where the Louisiana-Lafayette Ragin’ Cajuns beat Tulane 24-21.

Louisiana-Lafayette Ragin’ Cajuns

The Louisiana-Lafayette Ragin’ Cajuns enter the postseason after winning the Sun Belt’s West Division Title. They went on to play in the Sun Belt Championship, where they lost to Appalachian State. The Ragin’ Cajuns ended the regular season with a 7-6 record and were 5-3 in the conference.

The Ragin’ Cajuns started out the season against some stiff competition and went 1-3 to start out the year. They took losses against the SEC’s Alabama Crimson Tide and Mississippi State, while also losing a sandwich game between them to Coastal Carolina.

The following is the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns complete schedule from the 2018 College Football Regular Season:

  • Saturday 12/01/18 @ Appalachian State L 19-30
  • Saturday 11/24/18 @ UL Monroe W 31-28
  • Saturday 11/17/18 South Alabama W 48-38
  • Saturday 11/10/18 Georgia State W 36-22
  • Saturday 11/03/18 @ Troy L 16-26
  • Saturday 10/27/18 Arkansas State W 47-43
  • Saturday 10/20/18 @ Appalachian State L 17-27
  • Saturday 10/13/18 New Mexico State W 66-38
  • Saturday 10/06/18 @ Texas State W 42-27
  • Saturday 09/29/18 @ Alabama L 14-56
  • Saturday 09/22/18 Coastal Carolina L 28-30
  • Saturday 09/15/18 @ Mississippi State L 10-56
  • Saturday 09/01/18 Grambling State W 49-17

The Ragin’ Cajuns are anchored by Head Coach Billy Napier. Napier is a former Nick Saban assistant that plays a very similar style of football as his former mentor. The Ragin’ Cajuns were strong off offense but bad on defense!

The Ragin’ Cajuns have the 19th ranked rushing offense in the FBS and like to set up the game plan where they run the ball down your throat and force you to try to stop them. They are averaging 229 rushing yards per game on the ground and also have one of the most talented QB’s in the Sun Belt Conference in Andre Nunez. Nunez has thrown for 2,136 yards, 19 touchdowns and 12 interceptions.

The Ragin’ Cajuns also have two talented Running Backs in Trey Ragas and Elijah Mitchell. Ragas has carried the ball 197 times for 1141 yards and 8 touchdowns, while Mitchell has carried the ball 139 times for 951 yards on the season and 12 touchdowns. Both RB’s are averaging over 5.8 yards per carry.

The Ragin’ Cajuns are awaiting on the status of one of their top defensive players in Zi’Yon Hill, who had surgery to repair a shoulder injury. His status for Cure Bowl is still up in the air. Hill is one of the top defenders for the Ragin’ Cajuns, finishing the season 5th on the team in tackles even though he did not play in the Alabama or Texas State games.

Now you heard the good, now hear the bad! The Ragin’ Cajuns ranked 111th on defense and struggled to stop many teams in 2018. The defense was so bad that every team that they played scored at least 22 points on them with the exception of their first game of the year against Grambling State.

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Tulane Green Wave

The Tulane Green Wave accepted the bid to play in the AutoNation Cure Bowl after settling for co-champions of the west division of the American Athletic Conference. The Green Wave were 6-6 overall this year in the regular season and went 5-3 in the conference.

The Green Wave started out the season on a rough patch, losing 5 of their first 7 games overall but they closed out strong, winning 4 of their final 5 games to become bowl eligible for the first time since 2013, ironically which was their bowl game against their current opponent.

The following are the results from the Tulane Green Wave complete schedule from the 2018 College Football Regular Season:

  • Saturday 11/24/18 Navy W 29-28
  • Thursday 11/15/18 @ Houston L 17-48
  • Saturday 11/10/18 East Carolina W 24-18
  • Saturday 11/03/18 @ South Florida W 41-15
  • Saturday 10/27/18 @ Tulsa W 24-17
  • Saturday 10/20/18 Southern Methodist L 23-27
  • Saturday 10/06/18 @ Cincinnati L 21-37
  • Friday 09/28/18 Memphis W 40-24
  • Saturday 09/22/18 @ Ohio State L 6-49
  • Saturday 09/15/18 @ UAB L 24-31
  • Saturday 09/08/18 Nicholls State W 42-17
  • Thursday 08/30/18 Wake Forest L 17-23

The Green Wave will enter the Cure Bowl will some new coaches, which should be interesting to see how the players adjust to him. Head Coach Willie Fritz announced on Tuesday, December 4, 2018, that the Tulane Green Wave signed Will Hall as their new Offensive Coordinator.

Hall was previously with the Memphis Tigers, where he was the Associate Head Coach in charge of Tight Ends. Prior to going to Memphis, Hall spent a year with Louisiana-Lafayette as their Offensive Coordinator.

Handicapping Breakdown

This game is very interesting in the fact that one team is coming in with a new Offensive Coordinator, while the other team we know has enough offense to cause major issues for the opponent. Tulane’s offense was up and down all season, more down than up and if you stop their rushing attack, you pretty much take their passing game out of the game.

Tulane has one of the worst offenses in the entire bowl pool of teams and barely got bowl eligible, had it not been for a 1-point victory over Navy in the final game of the season.

On the other side, the Ragin’ Cajuns are going to run the ball, early and often. They are going to use the running game to set up the passing game. The Ragin’ Cajuns had the 8th best ATS record in College Football this year, covering the spread in 9 of 13 games.

There are a ton of questions that surround Tulane. How will they adjust to life without their Offensive Coordinator? Which QB will start the game, Justin McMillan or Jonathan Banks? Do they belong playing in a bow? The list goes on and on but with UL-Lafayette, you know they are going to be strong off offense at least, and they are going to score some points.

Our system is calling for an upset here, with UL-Lafayette winning by almost a touchdown. The line in this game over at Xbet is set at Tulane -3.5. This should be a no-brainer to anyone. Buy the half point up and take the points with UL-Lafayette plus 4 and also make sure you check out that money line. This is a great spot to get some extra cash on the money line. Right now, the money line is sitting anywhere from UL-Lafayette +130 all the way up to UL-Lafayette +145.

Spooky’s Bowl Pick – Louisiana-Lafayette +4 (buy 1/2 point)   

12/15/2018 @ 11:09 AM: We are making this a 3-star play on UL-Lafayette +4. Too many questions surround this Tulane team for us to go any higher with a serious amount of unknown with the offense.  Take the points and consider UL-Lafayette as a money line dog!

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