NCAA Football: Boston College Eagles vs. UMass Minutemen Preview, Prediction & Odds -- Sept. 11, 2021

by Chuck Sommers

Game time: 3:30 p.m. ET, September 11, 2021
Venue: Warren McGuirk Alumni Stadium, Amherst, MA
Where to watch: N/A

Opening Odds at USA Sportsbooks


DraftKings: Boston College -37; O/U 59
BetMGM: Boston College -37.5
Caesars: Boston College -37; O/U 58

Season record
Boston College: 1-0
UMass: 0-1

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Boston College - UMass preview and analysis


Recent form
Boston College: won 51-0 vs. Colgate on Sept. 4
UMass: lost 51-7 at Pittsburgh on Sept. 4

Welcome to another season of Massachusetts Minutemen football, where the torture never ends.

After a 51-7 loss to the Pittsburgh Panthers in Week 1, the Minutemen come home for the first time. Fans will be in the stands, cheering on the UMass faithful with the hope that some sort of exciting upset is upon us.

But that won’t be happening this week. UMass is facing the Boston College Eagles; a program that isn’t  dominant in the ACC, but good enough to where any meeting against UMass should end in a giant blowout.

Boston College is coming off a 51-0 victory in its home opener against Colgate. While there wasn’t much need to rinse the bad taste out of their mouth, the Eagles too care of business in what’s to be a rather easy non-conference schedule. Following these two road games against UMass and the Temple Owls, BC will begin ACC play following a home date with the Missouri Tigers.

BC quarterback Phil Jurkovec threw for 303 yards and three touchdowns on just 16-of-24 passing to pace the offense. Zay Flowers caught seven passes for 135 yards and a touchdown, as well.

So this sets up well for Boston College on the field. As far as the betting circles, there’s just no other reason to believe UMass can even cover this game. The Eagles have won straight up in all six meetings, having won the last meeting 55-21 in 2017.

This is the first time Boston College has made the trip to UMass since Doug Flutie was throwing legendary Hail Marys in the college days.

The interesting factor here is both teams needed late touchdowns (or gave up late touchdowns) for the backdoor cover. While Boston College won by that margin, BC led 30-0 after three quarters as 42-point favorites and scored three more times in the fourth quarter.

UMass was getting 38 points against Pitt and trailed 37-7 after the third quarter. That turned into Pitt being able to cover after tallying two late touchdowns with less than five minutes to go.

So there’s likely concern with BC not being able to keep the same type of spread this time around. The Minutemen are only 4-10 as a home underdog, but we’d be shocked if the BC contingent wasn’t greater for this matchup.

Prediction


UMass has just been so bad that the ideal situation would be to stay away from this game. Tyler Lytle was bad last week, and he didn’t even throw an interception. It’ll be all Eagles, and it may be close to covering, but expect another big win for BC. Boston College by 45.

Betting trends


The under is 28-13 in Boston College’s last 41 games as a road favorite.

UMass is 4-13 in its last 17 against the spread, 1-16 straight up.

Statistical leaders


Boston College:
Passing: Phil Jurkovec -- 303 yards, 3 TD
Rushing: Phil Jurkovec -- 61 yards
Receiving: Zay Flowers -- 135 yards, 1 TD
Defense: Shitta Sillah -- 7 tackles, 1 sack

UMass:
Passing: Tyler Lytle -- 167 yards
Rushing: Kay’Ron Adams -- 32 yarsd
Receiving: Jermaine Johnson Jr. -- 52 yards
Defense: Da’Shon Ross -- 9 tackles

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Chuck Sommers

About the Author:

Chuck Sommers has camped outside of sportsbooks since he can remember, learning the tricks and nuances of the trade. He still has nightmares of betting $5,000 on the Raiders in the Tuck Rule game but has since turned that to 25 years of veteran handicapping greatness. You can find him mostly in the shadows at the Red Rock or Aliante casinos wondering if the over is cashing on any given Sunday.

All photographic images used for editorial content have been licensed from the Associated Press.

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