FIU Panthers (0-0) at Liberty Flames (1-0)
College Football: Saturday, September 26, 2020 at 1:00 pm (Williams Stadium)
The Line: Liberty Flames -6.5 -- Over/Under: 58 Click to Get Latest Betting Odds
The FIU Panthers and the Liberty Flames meet Saturday in college football action from Williams Stadium.
This will be the first game of the 2020 campaign for FIU. Last season, the Panthers went 6-7 overall and 3-5 in Conference USA play. FIU was invited to the Camellia Bowl, where they fell 34-26 to Arkansas State. As for the Flames, they’ve got one game in the books in 2020. Liberty took on Western Kentucky last weekend, and bagged a victory 30-24. Check back all season long for free college football picks and college football predictions at Sports Chat Place.
The Panthers had quite the up-and-down season in 2019, and unfortunately the “down” part was more common. FIU finished one spot out of the basement in the East Division, mired in a logjam of mediocre Conference USA teams. The Panthers dropped four of their final six games to end the season on a downturn.
This year, FIU gets head coach Butch Davis back on the sideline for his fourth season. He’ll be joined by offensive coordinator Rich Skrosky (also in year four), and the second-year defensive coordinator duo of Jeff Copp and Jerod Kruse.
Over on the Liberty side, they had a nice season in 2019, going 8-5 overall, behind only Notre Dame among independents. The Flames earned a trip to the Cure Bowl, where they took out Georgia Southern 23-16.
Liberty looked pretty decent versus Western Kentucky in their opening game of the 2020 season. The Flames scored in every quarter, but couldn’t totally shake off the pesky Hilltoppers. Liberty quarterback Malik Willis threw for 133 yards and also led the rushers with 168 yards and three touchdowns on 21 carries. Joshua Mack also had a great day on the ground with 168 yards and three scores.
The Golden Panthers are 10-4 ATS versus a team with a winning record and 11-5 ATS in their last 16 games as an underdog. FIU is 2-5 ATS in their last seven games overall and 0-4 ATS in their last four games in September.
Meanwhile, the Flames are 5-1 ATS in their last six games overall and 11-5 ATS in their last 16 games in September. Liberty is 3-7 ATS in their last 10 games after an ATS win and 21-10 ATS in their last 31 non-conference games.
Pick: This one’s a little tricky, but I like Liberty. The Flames’ offense in their opening game wasn’t exactly explosive, but a steady pace in the running game and some great overall numbers there really helped with the results on the scoreboard. Liberty will likely want another heavy ball-control game like that again here, so expect a heavy dose of rushing until FIU proves they can stop it. As of right now, I'm okay on the Flames at less than a touchdown/extra point, but if the line inflates much I'll probably look at this game again.