College Football Predictions – Tulane Green Wave 2019 College Football Preview
Record – 7-6
ATS – 6-7
Green Wave, baby!
Tulane got off to a slow start winning just two of their first seven games and things did not look good. Then, BOOM, they rattled off four conference wins in their final five games to finish up at 6-6 and gain bowl eligibility. They did it in style with a late 2-PT conversion vs Navy (W 29-28) and get big marks from us for being aggressive and getting it done. They kept the ball rolling in the Cure Bowl when they disposed of a solid Louisiana squad (W 41-24) and that was their first bowl win since the 2002 Hawaii Bowl.
HC Willie Fritz has this program in good shape. On to 2019!
2019 MEGALOCKS Opening Power Rating
West Division – #3
American Athletic Conference – #7
Tulane Green Wave 2019 Outlook
Tulane did enough on offense to bag seven wins but they need to be a bit more potent in order to challenge for a division title (26.8 PPG, #8 AAC). Things should be a bit more SPICY this year with a new OC (from MEMPHIS) on board and a pair of dangerous QBs ready to lead the offense. Justin McMillan started the last six games in 2018 and did a fine job down the stretch (15 combined TDs rushing and receiving), and they add Southern Miss transfer Keon Howard to add depth and/or challenge for the starting gig. Tulane has rushed for over 200 YPG in each of the last three seasons. and even though they may choose to utilize the THROW GAME a bit more this year, there’s no question that the rushing attack will be their GO-TO MOVE. Their top-four rushers from a season ago are all back for battle including 2nd Team AAC honoree Darius Bradwell (1,134, 11 TD, 5.6 LY). The WR unit has a solid 1-2 combo in Darnell Mooney (993, 8 TD, 20.7 LY) and grad transfer Jalen McCleskey who did some good work at Oklahoma St (!). The OL is a bit of a concern as they only return a pair of starters and gave up 35 sacks in 2018. Maybe Virginia grad transfer Ben Knudson can make an impact at LT?
Tulane will be better on offense this year and might challenge the 30 PPG mark if the OL comes around quickly.
Tulane has played sound defense since Willie Fritz arrived and have given up fewer than 30 PPG in the each of the last three seasons (27.5 LY, #4 AAC). Things look really good on this side of the ball, even with the departure of last season’s top-two tacklers. They have eight returning starters and some real talent at each level of the defense. The DL returns the entire starting group and they were a big reason why the Green Wave allowed a mere 3.9 YPC a season ago (#2 AAC) (!) whilst tallying 41 sacks (#1 AAC) (!!). The LB unit is rock solid and returns one of the best defensive players in the conference in DE/LB Patrick Johnson who led the team in sacks (10.5) whilst garnering 1st Team AAC honors. The secondary has a lot of experience and don’t forget that Tulane allowed a meager 52.3% completions a season ago. We expect another good year in terms of getting pressure on the QB and that will continue to help out the back-end of the defense.
We really like what we see and expect these guys to be one of the better stop units in the AAC.
There shouldn’t be any significant weak spots as there is continuity across the board. PK Merek Glover nailed 10/13 FG attempts LY (2/4 40+ yards) and Amare Jones was very productive on KR (27.9 avg, 20 attempts).
Overall – It’s pretty difficult. The AAC appears to be sneaky tough and the non-conference schedule includes three tough games (FIU, at Auburn, at Army) and one lay-up (Missouri St). Five of their last eight games are on the road.
Potential ATS Trouble Spot – Nothing particularly spooky to note.
Season Win Total
Over 5.5 -155
Under 5.5 +135
Slight lean to the ‘over’ but not crazy about the price tag. Would be interested if something in the ‘-125’ range was available. May do some additional digging on this BAD BOY.
Trivia nugget, INCOMING!
Tulane played in the 1909 BACARDI BOWL in Havana, Cuba. They fell to the Havana Athletic Club by a score of 11-0. The game was not sanctioned by the NCAA, and thus the Green Wave do not recognize the bowl appearance in their “official” records.
MEGALOCKS ATS Outlook: Positive
Tulane is going to be a handful for their conference opponents. They look good on both sides of the ball and are extremely well-coached. They have a pair of challenging AAC road games (Memphis, Temple) but have the opportunity to get things off to a good start when they host Houston on September 19. They will have to pull an upset or two, but it’s not unthinkable that they are in the hunt for a division crown heading into November.
Willie Fritz is one of our favorite coaches to back at the windows. They were a bit disappointing in that regard last year (6-7 ATS) but the Green Wave have a decent 20-17 mark vs Vegas under their current head coach. They have been most SPICY in the role of home dog (5-2 vs the number). Put these guys on your watch list to start the year.
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