Washington State Cougars vs. Houston Cougars: Live score, TV channel & how to watch live stream
Series history: This is the fourth meeting between Washington State and Houston, with WSU taking two of the first three meetings — the most recent a 24-22 win in the 1988 Aloha Bowl.Anthony Gordon has been beyond brilliant so far as the new main man for the Wazzu passing game. So far the senior has hit 81% of his passes for 884 yards and nine touchdowns and a pick, and now he gets to go up against a Houston secondary that’s been carved up in the first two games.
Jalen Hurts looked like Aaron Rodgers in the opener against the Cougar defense, and last week Prairie View was able to get 248 passing yards and keep things moving a little bit.
But the Pac-12’s Cougars are more than just a strong passing game. They’ve been solid in turnover margin, they’re doing a decent job defensively, and it’s been a no-stress season so far as the team got two games to tune up, but …
New Mexico State and Northern Colorado. That’s who Wazzu has faced so far without a lick of adversity of pressure. Now the defense gets to go up against an offense that has yet to break out.
Dana Hologrsen has the offensive chops to take the Cougars to another level, but so far the offense has played it relatively close to the vest. D’Eriq King wasn’t used much last week against Prairie View – the game was over in the first quarter – but he was okay against Oklahoma. The ground attack has been moving just fine, and now it’s about to push the Wazzu defense a bit.
The offensive line has been a plus so far, controlling the clock shouldn’t be too much of an issue – Houston has held the ball for close to 33 minutes so far – and again, at some point, King is going to go off. The passing game has too many good parts to be kept under wraps for too much longer.
It’s the showcase game for Houston. It’s in NRG Stadium, it’s a Power Five program in its city, and it’s the moment to show that it belongs among the bigger boys.
The AAC’s Cougars were okay in the loss to Oklahoma – considering that’s a College Football Playoff-caliber Sooner team – but they need a win on national TV over a dangerous team like this to kickstart the dreams of getting into New Year’s Six bowl contention.
But Washington State is better than you think.
Again, the schedule hasn’t been a test so far, but it was what was needed to get Gordon going and the timing down. It’ll show this week, the Wazzu defense will step up and prove that it’s in for another good year, and even though it’ll be a bit of a shootout in the second half, the Pac-12’s Cougars will come away with an impressive performance.
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Washington State vs. Houston odds, predictions: 2019 college football picks from advanced simulation on 18-6 roll
American Athletic Conference power Houston takes on Pac-12 heavyweight and 20th-ranked Washington State in non-conference college football action on Friday. WSU (2-0) has been impressive so far this season, opening with 51- and 42-point victories, while Houston (1-1) will be looking to take advantage of a tough early-season schedule in preparation for their AAC opener at Tulane next week. The game, slated to begin at 9:15 p.m. ET, will be played at NRG Stadium, and Washington State is the second ranked opponent to face Houston in three weeks. Houston fell to No. 4 Oklahoma in its first game. WSU is a 9.5-point favorite in the latest Washington State vs. Houston odds, while the over-under for total points scored is 73.5. Before making any Houston vs. Washington State picks of your own, you need to see what the SportsLine Projection Model has to say.
The SportsLine Projection Model simulates every FBS college football game 10,000 times, and those who have followed it have seen massive returns. Over the past four years, this proprietary computer model has generated a jaw-dropping $4,530 profit for $100 bettors on its top-rated college football against the spread picks.
The model enters Week 3 of the 2019 college football season on a blistering 18-6 run on its top-rated picks. It also called Colorado’s (+158) straight-up upset of Nebraska and was all over Army (+23) against No. 10 Michigan in a game the Black Knights pushed to overtime and covered with plenty of room to spare. Anybody who has been following it is way up.
Now, the model has dialed in on Washington State vs. Houston. We can tell you it’s leaning under, and it has a strong against the spread pick that cashes in well over 50 percent of simulations. That one is only available at SportsLine.
The model knows Washington State has won four conference championships through the years: 1917, 1930, 1997 and 2002. This year’s team is led by a pair of senior wide receivers, Dezmon Patmon and Easop Winston Jr.
Patmon is WSU’s top receiver and was named to the Biletnikoff Award watch list. He was named Preseason All-Pac 12 honorable mention and appeared in all 13 games in 2018, eight as a starter at Z receiver. For the season, he has 11 catches for 175 yards and one touchdown. For his career, he has 109 receptions for 1,389 yards and six TDs. Meanwhile, Winston leads WSU in receiving touchdowns with three. For his career, he has 63 receptions for 818 yards and 11 TDs. Last season, he appeared in all 13 games, including five as a starter at Z receiver. In FBS games, Washington State boasts a point differential of plus-51 this season, compared to minus-18 for Houston.
But just because WSU has crushed its competition over the first two weeks of the season does not guarantee it will cover the Washington State vs. Houston spread on Friday.
Houston, which has compiled a 442-367-15 all-time record, is taking aim at its 12th conference championship and first since 2015. The Cougars have competed in 27 bowl games through the years, going 11-15-1. Houston last won a bowl in December 2015, a 38-24 victory over Florida State in the Peach Bowl.
Junior wide receiver Marquez Stevenson has had a strong start to the season with 10 catches for 105 yards and one touchdown. He also has one carry for 13 yards. In 2018, he was on the Biletnikoff Award watch list and led the American with five games of at least 100 yards receiving. He finished second in the conference with 75 receptions for 1,019 yards and was third with nine touchdowns.
Washington State vs. Houston: Prediction, pick, odds, line, football game, point spread, kickoff time, preview
The Week 3 college football action on Friday night brings us a nonconference matchup with the potential to produce some offensive fireworks as Mike Leach and No. 20 Washington State will make the trek to take on Dana Holgorsen and the Houston Cougars. Washington State will be looking to move to 3-0 on the year while Houston aims to keep its momentum going with a second consecutive win since the season-opening loss to Oklahoma.
Even though this matchup was booked well in advance, it pits a pair of coaches against each other who are rather familiar with their adversary. Offensive guru Leach takes on his former understudy Holgorsen, who served as an assistant on Leach’s staff at Texas Tech for eight years.
Defense may be optional on Friday night with the total currently sitting at 73.5 points. Let’s take a closer look at what to expect at NRG Stadium on Friday night between these two Cougars.
Washington State: Leach’s team scored 58 points in its season-opener and topped that by scoring 59 in Week 2. Incredibly, it seems he’s done it again: replaced an elite quarterback with another highly-competent gun-slinger. Senior Anthony Gordon is completing 81.1 percent of his passes this season, and is fueling a top-10 offense while rating out comfortably in total quarterback rating among the best in the nation.
Houston: Holgorsen was reminded in Week 1 of the season what he’s been taught since Lincoln Riley took over at Oklahoma: beating the Sooners — no matter the venue — is a near-impossible task. The Cougars fell 49-31 to open their season at Oklahoma but bounced back in Week 2 with a confidence-boosting 37-17 win over Prairie View A&M. Getting quarterback D’Eriq King back into his Heisman-contending groove will be a must for Holgorsen’s squad to have a puncher’s chance.
Date: Friday, Sept. 13 | Time: 9:15 p.m. ET
Location: NRG Stadium — Houston, Texas
TV: ESPN | Live stream: WatchESPN.com
Game prediction, picks
I get that NRG Stadium isn’t Houston’s home palace, but this is about as favorable a venue as the Cougars from the Lone Star State could get here. And they’re getting points? No chance I’m giving up free money. I like the hometown Cougars to cover against the visiting Cougars — especially with an 8.5-point spread. Pick: Houston +8.5