South Alabama (1-4, 0-1) at Troy (4-1, 1-0)
When: Wednesday, October 11th 2017
Where: Veterans Memorial Stadium, Troy, AL
Time: 8:00 ET | TV: ESPN2
Opening Odds: Troy -17.5/49
The Sun Belt Conference takes center stage in this midweek matchup between the South Alabama Jaguars and Troy Trojans on Wednesday night – broadcast live on ESPN2. This will be the sixth overall meeting in this series for schools that are only 200 miles apart. The Trojans have won two in a row against the Jaguars with both games decided by one score, but the road team has covered four of the last five. Troy gained national attention with their huge upset win at LSU on September 30th, but must focus on winning the Sun Belt before thinking about finishing the regular season as the top Group of 5 team. Troy finished conference play with a 6-2 mark last season. South Alabama is desperate for a victory after a 1-4 start to the season. The Jaguars opened the year with Ole Miss and Oklahoma State and lost by a combined 91-34. After a win over Alabama A&M, South Alabama stumbled in overtime (29-23) against the Idaho Vandals at home and lost to Louisiana Tech 34-16 on September 30th. With seven games remaining, it will be tough for the Jaguars to become Bowl-eligible as they have four road games left and host an improving ULM team and Arkansas State later this season.
In Troy’s upset victory against LSU, the Trojans ran the ball well by controlling the line of scrimmage. The offense generated 206 yards rushing and three scores for an average of 4.9 yards per carry. Jordan Chunn rushed for 191 of those 206 yards and enters Wednesday night’s game with 490 on the season. Chunn has posted back-to-back 100-yard efforts, and also has 17 receptions out of the backfield. Quarterback Brandon Silvers has taken a lessor role with the emergence of the running game, and has thrown just two TD passes after a career-best 23 last season. Silvers’ top target is Deondre Douglas with 22, but Emanuel Thompson (20), Damion Willis (14) and Tevaris McCormick (15) are also capable. Troy is ranked 24th in the country in points allowed (18.6) and 32nd overall (344.6 yards/game).
South Alabama is limiting opponents to 129 rushing yards per game through the first five, with Oklahoma State (163) posting the most yardage so far. The Jaguars have not allowed an opponent to finish a game with a per-carry average higher than 4.9 and surrendered just one run of 30 yards or more. Freshman linebacker Riley Cole (30) leads the improved defense, with Finesse Middleton (four tackles for a loss) and Tyree Turner (three) also having good seasons thus far. South Alabama enters Wednesday night’s matchup with the No. 9 ranked pass efficiency defense in the Sun Belt, having allowed 11 passing scores through five games and opposing quarterbacks are connecting on 65.4% of their throws against the secondary. South Alabama ranks 113th in total offense (329.0) and 99th in passing (186.8).
Though Troy’s win over LSU may have been a bit of a fluke, this team is pretty good. The rushing attack is one of the best in the conference and they were a strong team last year. Troy is just better overall and South Alabama will have a hard time scoring points. I’ll take the home team in a route.
Pick: Troy -16.5
- Jaguars are 7-19 ATS in their last 26 conference games.
- Jaguars are 10-28 ATS in their last 38 games overall.
- Jaguars are 3-11 ATS vs. a team with a winning record.
- Jaguars are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games following a straight up loss.
- Jaguars are 4-23 ATS in their last 27 games after allowing more than 450 total yards in their previous game.
- Jaguars are 1-6 ATS in their last 7 games following a ATS loss.
- Jaguars are 1-6 ATS in their last 7 road games.
- Jaguars are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 road games vs. a team with a winning home record.
- Jaguars are 0-6 ATS in their last 6 games following a bye week.
- Trojans are 14-5 ATS in their last 19 games after accumulating less than 170 yards passing in their previous game.
- Trojans are 8-17 ATS in their last 25 games in October.
- Trojans are 2-5 ATS in their last 7 conference games.
- Trojans are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games following a straight up win.
- Trojans are 1-5 ATS vs. a team with a losing record.
- Trojans are 1-6 ATS in their last 7 games overall.
- Trojans are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 home games.
- Trojans are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 home games vs. a team with a losing road record.
- Trojans are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 games on turf.
- Trojans are 0-5 ATS in their last 5 games following a bye week.
- Under is 4-0 in Jaguars last 4 games overall.
- Over is 4-0 in Jaguars last 4 road games vs. a team with a winning home record.
- Under is 5-1-1 in Jaguars last 7 games following a straight up loss.
- Over is 4-1 in Jaguars last 5 road games.
- Over is 7-2-1 in Jaguars last 10 vs. a team with a winning record.
- Under is 3-1-1 in Jaguars last 5 games in October.
- Under is 3-1-1 in Jaguars last 5 games after allowing more than 280 yards passing in their previous game.
- Over is 9-4-2 in Jaguars last 15 games following a ATS loss.
- Under is 4-0 in Trojans last 4 vs. a team with a losing record.
- Under is 5-0 in Trojans last 5 games following a straight up win.
- Under is 4-0 in Trojans last 4 games on turf.
- Under is 5-0 in Trojans last 5 games following a ATS win.
- Under is 10-1-1 in Trojans last 12 conference games.
- Under is 4-1 in Trojans last 5 games after accumulating less than 170 yards passing in their previous game.
- Under is 4-1 in Trojans last 5 home games vs. a team with a losing road record.
- Under is 4-1 in Trojans last 5 games after accumulating more than 200 yards rushing in their previous game.
- Under is 15-5-1 in Trojans last 21 games overall.
- Under is 16-6-1 in Trojans last 23 games following a bye week.
- Over is 20-9 in Trojans last 29 home games.
- Underdog is 4-0 ATS in their last 4 meetings.
- Road team is 4-1 ATS in their last 5 meetings.
- Under is 3-1-1 in the last 5 meetings.