Colorado State vs. Air Force

Colorado State vs. Air Force | 2020 NCAAF Expert Analysis

Written by on November 24, 2020

Of course, there is NFL action on the American Thanksgiving holiday this Thursday, but the first game is rather unappealing with Houston visiting Detroit. There also is a college football matchup during the day as Colorado State visits Air Force in Mountain West action. The Falcons are favored on the NCAAF odds.

How to Bet Colorado State at Air Force NCAA Football Odds & TV Info

  • When: Thursday, 2 p.m. ET
  • Where: Falcon Stadium
  • TV: CBS Sports Network
  • Stream: CBS Sports app
  • Radio:com
  • Opening NCAAF Lines: Air Force -5.5 (total 53.5)

Last Meeting

In 2019, Air Force beat Colorado State 38-21. Donald Hammond III ran for a touchdown and threw for three more, including a go-ahead 50-yard catch-and-run to Geraud Sanders in the fourth quarter as Air Force shook off an early two-touchdown deficit. Hammond added a 28-yard touchdown pass to Benjamin Waters later in the fourth quarter after earlier hitting him with a 31-yard score. Patrick O’Brien threw for two touchdowns, including a 17-yard score to Dante Wright with 6:36 remaining that pulled the Rams within three points. But the Falcons responded by grinding out another scoring drive that Hammond capped with a 1-yard run with 2:32 left to play.

Why Bet on Colorado State? | 2020 NCAAF Expert Analysis

Colorado State (1-2) was to host UNLV this past Saturday but it was canceled because of COVID-19 issues. CSU and UNLV will look into the possibility of playing the game later in the year, with the week of the conference title game (Dec. 19) the most likely possibility. CSU also had a game vs. New Mexico earlier this year canceled due to COVID.

Colorado State is 15-25-2 all-time on Thanksgiving Day and prior to the 2018 game. The Rams are aiming to get their first win at Air Force since a 31-12 victory in 2002. First-year head coach Steve Addazio is aiming to secure his second rivalry trophy as well in his first year. The Rams won the Border War to bring the Bronze Boot back to campus and have their focus on the Ram-Falcon Trophy this week. The trophy has not resided in Fort Collins since 2015. The Ram-Falcon Trophy traces its roots to a former CSU ROTC commander. Shelly Godkin helped create the trophy which has been award annually since 1980.

Senior punter Ryan Stonehouse’s career punt average of 46.7 is an NCAA FBS career record. The current record is 46.31.  With one more touchdown catch, TE Trey McBride (9) will tie Joel Dreesen (10) for second place on CSU’s career touchdown receptions among tight ends. With one tackle for loss, Manny Jones will move into a tie for 9th place in career tackles for loss at Colorado State.

Through the first three games, Colorado State’s defensive line has shown massive improvement under the direction of Steve Addazio and line coach Antoine Smith. Last season, the Rams averaged just 5.7 tackles for loss per game – No. 83 nationally. Currently, the Rams rank No. 2 nationally with 10.3 tackles for loss per game. That 5.8 TFL/game improvement leads the nation currently.

Senior wide receiver Warren Jackson was named the 2020 Mountain West Preseason Offensive Player of the Year on the heels of a dominant performance where he was often unguardable in 2019. However, when the Mountain West postponed the 2020 season, Jackson opted to begin his draft preparations ahead of schedule. In 2019, Jackson caught 77 passes for 1,119 yards and eight touchdowns.

Why Bet on Air Force? | 2020 NCAAF Expert Analysis

Air Force (2-2) comes off a 28-0 win over New Mexico last Friday. The win gave head coach Troy Calhoun his 100th career victory as the leading man for the Falcons.

Air Force out-gained New Mexico by a 422-304 tally, including a 356-83 difference on the ground. The Falcons went 9-of-13 on third down, compared to a 4-for-13 mark for the Lobos. Despite running just one more play than UNM, Air Force dominated the time of possession, 36:29-23:31. Leading the way on offense was sophomore fullback Brad Roberts, as he had a career-day, rushing 28 times for 177 yards and three touchdowns.

Roberts leads the Falcons in rushing with 280 yards and in rushing touchdowns with four. He is averaging 140 yards per game which would lead the conference, but a player must play in 75 percent of the team’s games to qualify. Roberts opened the season rushing for 103 yards and a touchdown on 10 carries vs. Navy. He missed the next two games and returned to the lineup vs. New Mexico.

It was AFA’s first shutout win since blanking Stony Brook, 38-0, in the 2018 season opener. It was the first shutout of a conference opponent since stymieing the Lobos, 42-0, back on Oct. 29, 2011. The Falcons have now won nine-straight against UNM at home, and three-straight overall.

Air Force leads the series with Colorado State, 36-21-1, including a 25-15 mark in conference games. The Falcons are 21-11-1 at home and 15-10 at Colorado State. Air Force has won four straight and 12 of the last 14 in the series. The teams play each year for the Ram-Falcon Trophy. The 2020 season marks the 41st year of the trophy competition with Air Force holding a 25-15 lead.

Air Force will be playing on Thanksgiving Day for the fourth time in school history and second consecutive time vs. Colorado State in Falcon Stadium. The Falcons are 1-2 in the three previous meetings. AFA has 29 seniors that will be recognized this week before the game vs. Colorado State. The seniors have combined for a 23-18 overall record. The class is 15-6 at home.

Game Trends

Rams are 6-2 ATS in their last 8 games following a ATS loss.
  • Rams are 8-3 ATS in their last 11 games following a straight up loss.
  • Falcons are 5-2 ATS in their last 7 home games vs. a team with a losing road record.
  • Falcons are 5-11 ATS vs. a team with a losing record.
  • Over is 10-3 in the last 13 meetings.
  • Underdog is 5-1 ATS in their last 6 meetings.

Expert College Football Prediction

Air Force 33, Colorado State 20


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