Houston vs Rice Prediction - College Football Picks 9/9/23

Rice Owls (0-1) vs Houston Cougars (1-0)

Game Info: Saturday, September 9, 2023 at 7:00 pm (Rice Stadium)

Betting Odds: Rice Owls +9.5 -- Over/Under: 52.5 Click Here for the Latest Odds

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The Houston Cougars and Rice Owls face off on Saturday in a Week 2 college football showdown at Rice Stadium. 

Remember When JT Daniels was a Five Star Recruit?

This has been quite the fall of grace for JT Daniels who was once a five star recruit going to the USC Trojans. When he came out of high school there were thoughts he was going to be the next great star quarterback, and now he’s struggle for the Rice Owls. in the first game of the season against Texas, Rice had some major issues moving the ball and they ended up losing 37-10. Daniels completed 14 of his 26 passes for 149 yards, one touchdown, and two interceptions. One issue for the offense was the running game didn’t get going. Dean Connors rushed eight times for 23 yards. If Rice wants any chance in this game, JT Daniels is going to need to be better here. 

Rice Betting Trends

  • Rice has lost each of its last five games.
  • Rice has covered the spread in four of its last five games against non-conference opponents.
  • Rice has lost the first half in 18 of its last 24 games against non-conference opponents.
  • Nine of Rice's last 10 games against non-conference opponents have gone OVER the total points line.

Houston Squeak a Victory

Houston was really tested in their first game of the season against UTSA, but they were able to secure the 17-14 victory. They almost blew the game in the 4th quarter not scoring any points, but they held on. Under center for Houston is Donavan Smith and in the first game he completed 22 of his 34 passes for 233 yards and two touchdowns. There were four different players who rushed at least six times and it looks like it’s going to be a balanced attack this season on the ground. On defense, Houston had three interceptions and they are going to need the defense to step up and create turnovers again here. 

Houston Betting Trends

  • The underdog has won three of Houston's last four games.
  • Houston has failed to cover the spread in each of its last five September games as a favorite.
  • Houston has won the first half in each of its last three games against opponents from the American Athletic Conference.
  • Seven of Houston's last eight road games in September have gone OVER the total points line.

Rice and Houston Facts

  • Houston ranked T5th among FBS teams for H2 win percentage last season (.769).

Shane’s Free Pick

Daniels threw two interceptions in the first game, and Houston is coming off a game where they create three interceptions. Houston’s defense is going to lockdown again here, and Daniels and the Rice offense is going to have some major issues moving the ball again here. I also don’t think Houston is going to run up the score here. They will score enough to win, but they aren’t going to finish right around the 30 point mark here. This game is going to be lower scoring and the under will cash. 

The pick in this article is the opinion of the writer, not a PickDawgz site consensus.

Mitch's Take...

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