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North Texas Mean Green at Liberty Flames
NCAAF: Saturday, September 22, 2018, Williams Stadium, Lynchburg, Virginia, 6 PM ET
The North Texas Mean Green opened the new season with three wins and they are at the top of the Conference USA West thanks to great offensive displays in the first three weeks. On the other hand, the Liberty Flames started with a convincing win over the Old Dominion Monarchs but they suffered a defeat to the Army Knights.
The Mean Green upset Arkansas on the road
North Texas surprised the Razorbacks with a 44-17 victory thanks to Arizona’s six turnovers, while the Mean Green committed just one. The Mean Green scored 17 unanswered points in the first quarter and the hosts couldn’t get the things going to get back in the clash, so the visitors secured a comfortable win. North Texas recorded 281 passing yards, and although they had less than 100 rushing yards, they proved to be very dangerous through the air. The Mean Green has the third-best offense when it comes to the passing as they are averaging 398.7 passing yards per contest, while Liberty is allowing 116.5 passing yards per game, which is the third-best defense in the country.
Mason Fine is listed as the starting quarterback and the junior has 89 completions on 135 attempts for 1143 yards, eight touchdowns, and an interception, for the rating of 155.1. Fine recorded 24 passes on 45 attempts for 281 yards and a touchdown in a win over Arkansas, and he should have better numbers on Saturday.
The Flames’ defense couldn’t cope with Army’s rushing offense
Liberty displayed a very well offensive performance when it comes to the passing as they recorded even 307 yards and a couple of touchdowns comparing it with Army’s 61, but the Knights destroyed them on the ground as they ran for 449 yards and four scores. Liberty is excellent in defending the air, but they have a lot of problems when it comes to defending the ground as they are allowing 289.0 yards per contest, and the Mean Green will be looking to hurt the visitors with running.
Stephen Calvert is the No. 1 option at the quarterback and the junior has 44 completions on 73 passes for 652 yards, six touchdowns, and an interception, for the rating of 159.7. Calvert threw 19 passes on 37 attempts in a loss to Army as he collected 307 yards, two touchdowns, and an interception.
- 2-3 in the last five games in total
- 4-6 in the last ten games overall
- 4-0 ATS in their last four vs. INDEP rivals
- 6-1 ATS in their last seven games after scoring more than 40 points in their previous game
- 9-3 ATS in their last 12 non-conference games
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
These teams have never met before but after everything we saw in the opening three weeks of the season, the Mean Green is looking in a stronger position to get the victory here. North Texas has a fantastic offense when it comes to the passing, while Liberty is defending the air at a high level, so it’s going to be interesting to see the visitors how they’ll handle the Flames’ sturdy defense. However, I don’t think they will have troubles to secure the fourth straight win.
Prediction: North Texas Mean Green -12.5 (-110)
Full-Game Total Pick
When it comes to the points, under is 7-3 in Flames last ten games overall; under is 5-1 in Mean Green last six games in total, while under is 5-1 in Mean Green previous six games after scoring more than 40 points in their previous game.
Prediction: Under 70 (-110)
Full-Game Prop Bet
North Texas destroyed all of their opponents in the opening three weeks of the season, scoring 44+ in each of those contests, and although they are facing the team that is also rather efficient, I don’t think they will have trouble to beat the Flames with a margin bigger than 12 points. Still, I don’t believe the visitors will be that dominant as it was the case so far in the campaign, so I am backing them to win by 13 to 18 point difference.
Prediction: Winning Margin: North Texas Mean Green 13-18 (+400)
Half-Time Side Pick
The Mean Green had a lead at halftime in each of the previous three games, while Liberty was up only once after the opening 30 minutes, so I am backing the visitors to take control of this tilt in the first half and create at least a 7-point lead.
Prediction: North Texas Mean Green -7 (-110)
Half-Time Total Bet
Two of the Mean Green’s three games produced more than 35 points at halftime, while that wasn’t the case in none of the Flames’ three games thus far, and considering that I expect to see under 70 points in the end, I am also backing under at halftime.
Prediction: Under 35.5 (-110)
Half-Time Prop Prediction
The visitors are the favorites here and I don’t think they will have problems to beat Liberty in both halves, but if the -175 odds are too low for your taste, you can try with a tie at halftime and North Texas’s win in the end at +1600.
Prediction: Double Result: North Texas – North Texas (-175)