Marshall vs. Middle Tennessee - 11/12/16 College Football Pick, Odds, and Prediction
Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders (6-3) at Marshall Thundering Herd (2-7)
College Football: Saturday, November 12, 2016 at 7:00 pm (Joan C. Edwards Stadium)
The Line: Marshall Thundering Herd +9.5 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds
TV: American Sports Network
The Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders will travel to Joan C. Edwards Stadium to take on the Marshall Thundering Herd this Saturday night in College Football action.
The Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders had their two game winning streak snapped and dropped to 6-3 (3-2 C-USA) on the season after being defeated by the UTSA Roadrunners, 45-25, this past Saturday. Middle Tennessee lost their star QB Brent Stockstill early in the 1st quarter and Blue Raiders just couldn’t generate the same amount of offense without him in this one. Middle Tennessee was outgained by UTSA by a 378-369 margin and lost the turnover battle by a 4-2 margin. Leading the way for the Blue Raiders was WR Richie James who had a TD and 100 receiving yards on 5 receptions. On the season, Middle Tennessee is averaging 38.8 ppg on 519.7 total yards per game (341.3 passing, 178.3 rushing). Offensively, Middle Tennessee has been led by QB Brent Stockstill (63.9 Comp %, 27 TD, 5 INT, 311.2 yds/g) however, if Stockstill can’t go due to his shoulder injury, the Blue Raiders will rely on John Urzua (54.5 Comp %, 2 TD, 4 INT, 133.5 yds/g). The Blue Raiders have a very dangerous receiving group which is led by Richie James (8.1 rec/g, 125.8 yds/g, 9 TD), I’Tavius Mathers (5.4 rec/g, 53.6 yds/g, 3 TD), Ty Lee (4.6 rec/g, 51.8 yds/g, 6 TD), Dennis Andrews (2.7 rec/g, 36.3 yds/g, 6 TD), and Patrick Smith (2.8 rec/g, 31.6 yds/g, 2 TD). The Blue Raiders backfield is led by I’Tavius Mathers who had 12 TD’s on the season and is averaging 127.2 rushing yds/g on 19.0 att/g. Defensively, Middle Tennessee is allowing their opponents to average 31.6 ppg on 433.1 total yards per game (243.3 passing, 189.8 rushing). The Blue Raiders have forced their opponents into committing 15 turnovers this season and has an overall turnover margin of +3.
USA TODAY Sports
The Marshall Thundering Herd lost their 3rd straight game and dropped to 2-7 (1-4 C-USA) on the season after being defeated by the Old Dominion Monarchs, 38-14, this past Saturday. Marshall had no answers for Ray Lawry and the Monarchs rushing attack and couldn’t fight back after falling behind by a 21-7 margin at halftime. Marshall was outgained by Old Dominion by a 461-214 margin and allowed the Monarchs to rush for 262 yards. Leading the way for Marshall was QB Chase Litton who completed 17 of 26 passes for 87 yards and a TD. On the season, Marshall is averaging 28.3 ppg on 348.7 total yards per game (245.8 passing, 102.9 rushing). Offensively, the Thundering Herd has been led by QB Chase Litton who has completed 62.0% of his passes for 18 TD and 7 INT while averaging 258.1 passing yds/game. Litton’s main targets this season has been Michael Clark (3.3 rec/g, 61.1 yds/g, 5 TD), Josh Knight (5.2 rec/g, 55.6 yds/g, 4 TD), Ryan Yurachek (2.7 rec/g, 30.7 yds/g, 4 TD), and Deon-Tay McManus (2.6 rec/g, 28.6 yds/g, 2 TD). The Marshall backfield has been led by Keion Davis who had 6 TD’s on the season and is averaging 58.6 rushing yds/game. Defensively, Marshall is allowing their opponents to average 35.0 ppg on 467.1 total yards per game (259.3 passing, 207.8 rushing). Marshall has only committed 12 turnovers on the season and has an overall turnover margin of +2.
The Blue Raiders are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games in November however, just 1-3-1 ATS in their last 5 conference games. The Thundering Herd are 15-2-2 ATS in their last 19 home games vs. a team with a winning road record however, are just 1-5 ATS in their last 6 conference games.
This game has yet to be lined due to the uncertainly of Middle Tennessee’s standout QB, Brent Stockstill. Early indications look as he won’t be able to go due to a shoulder injury. I’m interested to see where this line ends up at as Middle Tennessee really struggled without Stockstill under center and having a freshman QB make his first start in a road conference game usually isn’t a recipe for success, even if the Blue Raiders are going against Marshall’s 108th ranked scoring defense. I'll wait to make an offical pick until the status of Brett Stockstill is known, but as of right now, I’m leading towards taking the Thundering Herd if Stockstill doesn't play and if they get 10+ points as I think Chase Litton will be able to generate enough offense trhough the air to cover. Please check back when the line is posted.
Update (11/12/16): It does look like Brent Stockstill is out of the season due to a collerbone injury. Marshall hasn't been good this season but as I didn't like what I saw from the Blue Raiders offense after Stockstill went down, I'm going to take the Thundering Herd and the points.