Part of the fun of wagering on college football bowl games is taking time to cut through all the unpredictability in order to arrive at a winning bet. After all, these games very often feature teams that we have not seen all year, and who are going against opponents that they have never faced before. You also have to try and figure out which teams are in it to win it, and which ones will be either disinterested or simply making the trip to give their players and fans a little bit of a vacation. That latter element very much comes into play with this one, as Hawaii is certainly a fun destination to head to in the winter months. This year’s version of the Hawaii Bowl looks to be a good one if both teams come to make a game of it, as the Houston Cougars and Fresno State Bulls are pretty evenly matched in terms of stats. The bookies certainly seem to think it will be close, as the online betting odds show Houston as a slight 2 ½ point favorite, with the point total for the Hawaii Bowl set at 49.

Hawaii Bowl Game Info: Houston Cougars Vs Fresno State Bulldogs

When: Sunday, December 24 at 8:30 PM EST
Where: Aloha Stadium, Honolulu
Live Stream: WatchESPN
Houston -2½

Why bet on the Houston Cougars

The Houston Cougars struggled with consistency throughout the 2017 college football season, ending the year with a 7-4 record. They did manage to say on the rails in the final month of the season, closing things out by winning 3 of their last 4 games. A balanced offense saw them score a touch over 28 PPG this season, while the defense held the opposition to 23 PPG. The defensive numbers might have been even better where it not for a couple of blowout games in the middle of the season when they conceded 45 and 42 points to Tulsa and Memphis, respectively, in back to back games. The offense was also a little up and down, and there were a lot of weeks in the regular season were the two units were simply not in sync. The Cougars were 6-5 ATS this season while going 2-9 O/U.

Houston Cougars

Why bet on the Fresno State Bulldogs

The Fresno State Bulldogs finished the season with a very respectable 9-4 record, and they go there by playing some stifling defensive football. The Bulldogs D held their opponents to an average of about 17 PPG and were difficult to break down via the air or ground. This season could have been a whole lot better for the Bulldogs had they been able to beat Boise State in the MWC Championship Game, but they went down in that one by a score of 17-14. This team is either going to come into this game determined to finish the year on a positive note, or they are going to still be down after that defeat. This is a team that has not done well in their recent bowl game appearances, going 0-6 SU and ATS in bowl games dating back to 2008. The Bulldogs went an impressive 10-2-1 ATS this season, as well as 3-10 O/U.

Fresno State Cougars

Expert Pick and Final Score Prediction

I think we might be in for a little bit of an upset here, as I like Fresno State to snap their winless streak in bowl games with a win in this one. It should be a close one, and I think the total creeps just OVER.

Predicted Score: Houston Cougars 24 Fresno State Bulldogs 27