College Football Week 10 Predictions: Rice Owls vs. North Texas Mean Green

Rice Owls vs. North Texas Mean Green
Thursday, 10/31/13, 7:30 PM EST
Opening Point Spread:  North Texas -2.5
Current Betting Line:  North Texas -2.5
Opening Total:  52
Current Total:  53
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

The Rice Owls are 10-7 ATS on the road since 2011
The Rice Owls are 10-7 ATS on the road since 2011

Rice takes a five-game overall winning streak and an eight-game streak in Conference USA play to Denton, TX, as it prepares for a matchup against North Texas on Halloween night.  The Owls are coming off a 45-7 win over the UTEP Miners as 19.5-point home favorites last Saturday, while going UNDER the betting total of 59.5—winning the statistical battle by a triple-digit margin for a second consecutive contest.  This will be the third time in the David Bailiff era that the program has played a midseason game during the week—resulting in a split in the two previous games.  Rice is 6-11 SU and 10-7 ATS on the road the last two-plus seasons.

The Owls have converted on all but one possession in the red zone during the 2013 campaign, which ranks third nationally, and can’t be ignored when looking over the college football odds page.  Despite facing two of the top 10 offenses in the country, Rice has allowed 87 fewer points through the first eight games than it did in 2012.  It’s also important to point out that the squad has held 16 of its last 18 opponents scoreless on their opening possessions.

North Texas has won three games in a row, including a 55-14 blowout victory over the Southern Miss Golden Eagles as 12-point road favorites last Saturday, while going OVER the betting total for the first time in four affairs.  The Mean Green have scored 21 points or more in their first eight games of the season for the first time in the school’s 98-year history, which is important to consider when making your college football predictions in Week 10.  Offensively, quarterback Derek Thompson has thrown for 300-plus yards seven times in his career, with wide receiver Brelan Chancellor being his main target.  North Texas is 2-6 SUATS off a win against a conference rival since 2011.

The Mean Green lead the conference and are third in the nation in red zone defense, as they’ve allowed opponents to score just 59 percent of the time.  North Texas is 13-3 when scoring more than 20 points and 1-15 when putting up 21 or less in 32 games under head coach Dan McCarney.  Chancellor is the active career leader in multiple categories nationwide, including kickoff returns yards a game.

Sports bettors will likely play the total, as the UNDER is 6-1 in the Mean Green’s last seven home games.

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