Lamar Cardinals (0-0) at North Texas Mean Green (0-0)
College Football: Saturday, September 2, 2017 at 7:00 pm (Apogee Stadium)
The Line: North Texas Mean Green -18 -- Over/Under: 53.5 Click to Get Latest Betting Odds
The North Texas Mean Green host the Lamar Cardinals in the college football opener for both teams.
Lamar will turn to first year coach Mike Schulz to turn the program around after finishing with 3-8 which cost Ray Woodard his job. Schulz has issues on both sides of the football but one that jumps off the page is the Cardinals managed 21 points on 324 yards for 4.6 yards per play with both the run and pass needing a boost. The Cardinals also struggled defensively with nearly 31 points allowed on 419 yards with opponents preferring to keep the ball with and average of 230 yards per contest. Lamar saw Andrew Allen begin 2016 as the starter under center before going down with an injury that gave Adam Morse a shot at quarterback so the starter might change with performance. The Cardinals receiving corps will lean on Zae Giles after logging 58 receptions a season ago. Lamar has experience along the offensive line but with All America back Kade Harrington is gone so James White will look to fill the void.
The North Texas Mean Green are looking to rebound from a 5-8 record of a season ago. UNT did not stand out on the offensive side of the football with 25 points scored on 342 yards with a rushing and passing attack that was in the bottom quarter of the rankings. The Mean Green defense allowed over 33 points on 440 yards and were #117 versus the run with 200 yards given up on average. Quarterback Mason Fine is hoping for improvement on a 2016 where he was thrown in to the fire as a freshman and it showed with the air game not producing, not to mention 36 sacks and an injured shoulder. JUCO Jalen Guyton and Ricco Bussey Jr. need to step up in right away and give Fine and the Mean Green receiving corps some reliable targets. UNT will lean on Jeffrey Wilson to shoulder the load on the ground but he is also a threat in the passing game with 29 catches in 2016. The Mean Green do have some experience on the offensive line but the key for UNT is establishing the pass.
The under is 4-1 in Lamar Cardinals last 5 games in September and the under is 4-1 in the Lamar Cardinals last 5 road games while the under is 4-1 in the Lamar Cardinals last 5 games overall. North Texas Mean Green are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 non-conference games and North Texas Mean Green are 4-1-1 ATS in their last 6 home games while the over is 9-3 in North Texas Mean Green last 12 games in September.
The Mean Green have the upper hand here and win but I would question if the team even cares about the outcome and would rather just win and be 100% ready for the conference schedule…