Where: Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium in Memphis, Tennessee
Date & Time: Saturday, December 30, 2017 at 12:30 PM ET
Spread: Memphis Tigers -3.5
Over/Under Total: 65.5
Quick Pick: Iowa State +4 (Buy it up) | Iowa State MoneyLine
The AutoZone Liberty Bowl will take place on Saturday, December 30, 2017 at 12:30 PM ET. This year, the bowl will feature the Iowa State Cyclones and the Memphis Tigers. The Liberty Bowl is being played at the Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium in Memphis, Tennessee and can be watched on ABC.
AutoZone Liberty Bowl
The AutoZone Liberty Bowl is an annual football game that is played during the NCAA’s College Football Bowl Season. The AutoZone Liberty Bowl has been played since 1959 and has been previously known as the Liberty Bowl, St. Jude Liberty Bowl and the AXA Liberty Bowl.
The AutoZone Liberty Bowl has conference tie-ins with the BIG 12, SEC and the American Athletic Conference. This year, the Iowa State Cyclones will represent the BIG 12 and the Memphis Tigers will represent the American Athletic Conference.
This is the third time that Iowa State has appeared in the AutoZone Liberty Bowl. They have gone 0-2 in their 2 previous appearances, losing to Tulsa 31-17 in 2012 and to Georgia Tech 31-30 in 1972. This will be the first time that the Memphis Tigers will appear in the AutoZone Liberty Bowl.
Previous Matchup History
This is the first time the Iowa State Cyclones and the Memphis Tigers have ever played each other.
Iowa State Cyclones 7-5 (BIG 12)
The Iowa State Cyclones come into this game with a 7-5 SU and 10-1-1 ATS record. They were one of the best teams to bet on this year, covering 10 out of 12 games in the regular season. The Cyclones haven’t cost their betting supporters a loss since September 28 when they los to the Texas Longhorns 17-7 as 5 point dogs.
Head Coach Matt Campbell took the Cyclones from a 3-9 team to a 7-5 bowl eligible team in just 2 years. Campbell and the Cyclones were a team that no one wanted to play, with wins over two top 15 teams. The Cyclones defeated Oklahoma and TCU and showed that they can compete with the best in the BIG 12. In the Cyclones 5 losses, the point differential was only -25 in 5 games, which breaks down to losing by only 5 points per game.
The success earned Campbell an extension and now he will be looking to get the Cyclones over the hump and back in the win column in a bowl. The Cyclones have appeared in 12 bowls in the history of the program and are 3-9 in those games.
The Cyclones have a very talented Running Back in David Montgomery. Montgomery rushed for 1094 yards and 11 touchdowns on the year. He had 828 yards after contact and is extremely hard to bring down.
The Memphis Tigers will be basically playing a home game at the AutoZone Liberty Bowl as the game is played right in Memphis, Tennessee! The Tigers went 7-0 at home this year and are always a tough team to travel to for road teams. The Tigers ended their regular season with a 10-2 SU and 7-4-1 ATS record overall.
The Tigers have the 4th best offense in the FBS. They are led by QB Riley Ferguson, who has passed for nearly 4000 yards this year. Ferguson has completed 63% of his passes for 36 touchdowns and 9 INT’s. Ferguson’s top target is senior WR Anthony Miller. Miller has 1407 receiving yards and 17 touchdowns on the year.
The Tigers have appeared in 10 bowl games in the history of the program. They have gone 5-5 (.500) and are coming into this year’s AutoZone Liberty Bowl on a 3 year bowl streak. This is their 4th consecutive bowl but they have only gone 1-2 in the last two years, losing to Auburn 31-10 in the 2015 Birmingham Bowl and to Western Kentucky 51-31 in last year’s Boca Raton Bowl.
Autozone Liberty Bowl Handicapping
Many people are going to see Memphis’s game totals and think, “Wow, they are really good” but we will caution to you be careful and dig deep! An interesting tid bit of information on Memphis is 6 of their 12 opponents rank in the bottom 9 for defense in the FBS.
Now, flip the coin to the other side and consider that Iowa State’s defense is ranked 46th in the nation and held high scoring teams like Oklahoma to 31 points, Texas Tech to 13 points, West Virginia to 20 points, and TCU to 7 points. They are a decent defense that plays physically up front. That being said, when the Cyclones have the ball, they should be able score at will due to the fact that Memphis has one of the worst defenses in FBS.
Our system is predicting a upset here. Bookmaker has this game as Memphis -3.5 and the total set at 65.5. We will buy up the half point and take Iowa State +4 and we will also play the moneyline dog play. Spooky Express Pick: Iowa St +4 (Buy half point) and Iowa State MoneyLine
Note: This bowl game is being handicapped and broken down weeks in advance of the game being played. Please be sure to check back periodically to determine if any changes have been made and be sure to check the day of the game, to receive and over/under plays that we may provide.
We are making our Iowa State play a 4 STAR for today. We will also be adding a 1 STAR play on this game to play over the posted total. The line went up from when this game originally opened at 65 but we still think it is safe to play it, if you buy it down to 67.
Iowa St +4 (Buy half point) (4 out of 5 Stars)
Iowa St vs. Memphis Over 67 (Buy it down) (1 out of 5 Stars)
Iowa State MoneyLine