The Tulane vs. Houston betting preview is certainly not the one we thought we’d be writing prior to the season. As we enter college football’s Week 5, the American Athletic Conference race will get a huge jolt, with the winner of this matchup becoming one of the favorites in the AAC. But which betting odds, DFS picks, and fantasy football players should you be mindful of? The official Tulane vs. Houston prediction gives you all the answers.
Want to win a free $200 on football this season? As a new user on DraftKings Sportsbook, you can bet $5 and win $200 by betting on the NFL or college football.
Tulane vs. Houston betting preview
- Spread: Houston (-2.5)
- Moneyline: Houston (-145); Tulane (+125)
- Over/Under: 55 points
- Game time: 7:00 p.m. ET
- Location: TDECU Stadium, Houston, TX
- Predicted weather at kick: 78 degrees, sunny, 6-7 mph winds
It’s a unique situation to be in for each team, especially the Tulane Green Wave. Tulane is fresh off a loss to Southern Miss after knocking off Kansas State, who then defeated Oklahoma in Week 4. The transitive property doesn’t actually exist in college football, but what’s a team like Tulane doing losing to a team like Southern Miss? Did they forgo out-of-conference prep and focus on AAC play with Houston on a short week? Was there a defensive discrepancy? Before we get into that, let’s roll with our fantasy and DFS plays ahead of our prediction.
Top DFS picks and fantasy plays
Here are the players and their values according to FanDuel ahead of their Friday night clash.
- QB Clayton Tune, Houston: $10,000
- QB Michael Pratt, Tulane: $9,400
- RB Tyjae Spears, Tulane: $9,300
- RB Ta’Zhawn Henry, Houston: $8,300
- RB Brandon Campbell, Houston: $7,500
- RB Iverson Celestine, Tulane: $5,300
- WR Nathaniel Dell, Houston: $9,200
- WR Matthew Golden, Houston: $6,800
- WR Joseph Manjack IV, Houston: $6,400
- WR Deuce Watts, Tulane: $6,100
- WR Jha’Quan Jackson, Tulane: $5,800
- WR Shae Wyatt, Tulane: $5,600
- WR Dea Dea McDougle, Tulane: $5,200
- WR KeSean Carter, Houston: $5,100
- TE Tyrick James, Tulane: $5,500
- TE Alex Bauman, Tulane: $5,300
The DFS plays center around the quarterbacks in this outing. Clayton Tune was penciled in as a surefire, can’t miss quarterback for fantasy purposes as well as postseason awards. However, four games into this season, he’s nowhere in that stratosphere or conversation, at least at this time. The talent is still there for Tune, but the processing has been slow and he’s needed some game-winning moments in the waning stages to cement what could be his legacy and ultimately even win some games this year.
Michael Pratt, however, is an interesting play for Tulane, both in season-long fantasy and DFS leagues. He’s a high-end rushing quarterback who is second on his team in yards facing off against a bottom-third run defense the Cougs possess. Grab Pratt at a cheap rate here and play one of the higher-end quarterbacks in flex or multi-scoring position.
As far as the receiving options and rushing options, Tyjae Spears is dominant and has great starting value here. The Houston receivers, on the other hand, do not. Tulane is a top-end defense, in fact, the top defense in defending the pass in terms of yards per game this year, thus mitigating the impact Nathaniel Dell or Matthew Golden could have on your DFS lineup.
For a more in-depth look at the DFS slate, take a look at our game-by-game preview for each FBS vs. FBS game on Friday night, including Tulane vs. Houston.
Prediction for Tulane vs. Houston
The Green Wave are in desperate need of a rebound victory after dropping the game to Southern Miss. Had they won as they should have, there could be a bit of a letdown or a rest-on-your-laurels type game on a short week. Instead, you can bet head coach Willie Fritz got this team back into shape and refocused for the conference game at hand. Pratt is a gritty quarterback who isn’t often asked to win games, but he may be called upon to do so here. Fortunately for him and Green Wave fans, the Cougars’ defense is giving up nearly 150 yards on the ground per game and has allowed eight touchdowns.
Pratt and Spears are in line for a big game if they want to win this one and make a name for themselves in the AAC. But it’s what Tulane does defensively that will go a long way in dictating the outcome of this game.
The rolling nature of their safeties and how close they play to the line of scrimmage will be a fun individual and stylistic matchup to watch when these two square off. Macon Clark flies around the field from a hybrid role at strong safety. He can cover the slot or drop back and play center field, confusing even the most seasoned of quarterbacks.
Keep eyes on Jadon Cannady on Tulane’s defense. After learning the nickel position last year, Cannady is trusted with the team’s No. 1 receivers whenever they come to the strong side of the field. What separates Cannady is his burst to the football and his willingness to mix it up with wide receivers and ball carriers even though he may give up a few inches to each. Cannady is the x-factor on this defense at limiting what could be a high-flying unit.
Since they stymied Kansas State, however, this Tulane defense may have shown their fatal flaw, and that is exposure to throws over the middle of the field when their safeties aren’t aligned properly. Stretching the field vertically is one thing, but stretching this relatively smaller Tulane defense out horizontally and pre-snap is what Houston can do en route to victory.
Prediction: Houston 28, Tulane 24