Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns at Texas State Bobcats
Bobcat Stadium – San Marcos, Texas
Tuesday, October 14, 2014, 8:00 pm Eastern, TV: ESPN2
Opening Line: Texas State -3
Current Line: Texas State -2
Opening Total: 63
Current Total: 64
Opening Money Line: Texas State -150 / Louisiana +130
Current Money Line: Texas State -130 / Louisiana +110
One sure sign that it is mid-October, besides cooler fall weather, leaves changing colors and children preparing for Halloween is Tuesday and Wednesday night college football games. The games usually involve MAC or Sun Belt schools and gives them a chance at a national TV audience. The first such game this season matches the 2-3 Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns and the 3-2 Texas State Bobcats Tuesday night in San Marcos. Both teams are 1-0 in the Sun Belt behind 4-0 Georgia Southern and 2-0 Arkansas State. Louisiana won the only previous meeting against Texas State last season in Lafayette 48-24 as the two teams became conference rivals for the first time.
Louisiana is coached by Mark Hudspeth. The Ragin’ Cajuns opened the season with a 45-6 win at home against Southern, before going on a three game losing streak. Louisiana opened Sun Belt play 10 days ago with a 34-31 home win over Georgia State. The Cajuns have losses at home to Louisiana Tech 48-20, at Ole Miss 56-15 and at Boise State 34-9. Louisiana is 1-4 ATS and the total is 3-2 this season. The Cajuns were 16 point favorites against Georgia State and the total was 64.5.
Texas State is coached by Dennis Franchione. The Bobcats have home wins over Arkansas-Pine Bluff 65-0 and 10 days ago against Idaho 35-30 in San Marcos to open Sun Belt play. Texas State also has a road win at Tulsa 37-34 in triple overtime. The Bobcats lost at home to Navy 35-21 and at Illinois 42-35. Texas State has won 2 straight games. The Bobcats are 3-2 ATS and the total is 3-1-1 this season. Texas State was a 14.5 point favorite against Idaho and the total was 65.
Louisiana is being outscored 35-25 this season. The Cajuns are #95 in scoring and #104 in points allowed out of 128 FBS teams. Louisiana is averaging 390 yards per game on offense including 214 passing and 176 rushing yards. On defense, the Cajuns are allowing 458 yards per game including 272 passing and 186 rushing yards. Louisiana is #92 or worse in all three categories nationally. The Cajuns are -9 in turnovers with 10 giveaways. Louisiana is averaging 47 penalty yards per game and opponents average 48. The Cajuns are 34/71 on third and fourth down conversions and opponents are 42/86. Louisiana has forced 7 sacks and allowed 2 this season. The Cajuns are 17/19 scoring in the red zone with 13 touchdowns and opponents are 16/20 with 13 touchdowns. Louisiana has allowed two pick sixes this season.
Louisiana quarterback Terrance Broadway has completed 59.9% of his passes for 892 yards with 6 touchdowns and 7 interceptions, along with 41 carries for 231 yards and a touchdown. Brooks Haack has also taken 21 snaps this season and thrown for 164 yards and 2 touchdowns. Running back Elijah McGuire has 43 carries for 331 yards and 3 touchdowns, plus 18 catches for 157 yards. McGuire is questionable with a toe injury. Alonzo Harris has 63 carries for 249 yards and 4 touchdowns, plus 6 catches. Receiver Jamal Robinson has 15 catches for 260 yards and 4 touchdowns. Al Riles has 15 catches for 139 yards. Four defensive players are questionable or out for Louisiana.
Texas State is outscoring teams 39-28 this season. The Bobcats are #23 nationally in scoring. Texas State is averaging 498 yards per game on offense including 238 passing and 260 rushing yards. The Bobcats are #20 in total offense and #16 nationally in rushing. On defense Texas State is allowing 425 yards per game including 210 passing and 215 rushing yards. The Bobcats are #34 in pass defense nationally but #110 in rush defense. Texas State is even in turnovers with 7 takeaways and giveaways. The Bobcats are averaging 74 penalty yards per game and opponents are averaging 35. Texas State is 38/80 on third and fourth down conversions and opponents are 41/95. The Bobcats have forced 19 sacks and allowed 9 this season. Texas State is 22/24 scoring in the red zone with 21 touchdowns and opponents are 19/26 with 15 touchdowns. The Bobcats have allowed one pick six this season,
Texas State quarterback Tyler Jones has completed 68.4% of his passes for 1,149 yards with 12 touchdowns and 4 interceptions, along with 69 carries for 253 yards and 4 touchdowns. Running back Terrance Franks has 52 carries for 408 yards and 6 touchdowns, plus 9 catches for 57 yards and 2 touchdowns. Robert Lowe has 68 carries for 402 yards and 2 touchdowns, plus 10 catches for 117 yards. Bradley Miller has 23 catches for 232 yards and a touchdown. Jafus Gaines has 12 catches for 206 yards and 4 touchdowns. Ben Ijah has 14 catches for 144 yards and 3 touchdowns. Brandon Smith has 13 catches for 118 yards and a touchdown.
Louisiana is 12-5 ATS against teams with winning records, 2-5 after gaining more than 450 total yards, 1-4 after allowing more than 280 passing yards, 1-7 after a cover, 0-5 in Sun Belt games, and after a straight up win, 0-4 in road games, overall and on fieldturf.
Texas State is 4-1 ATS after rushing for more than 200 yards, 2-5 at home, 1-4 in October, 0-4 in Sun Belt games, and after allowing more than 450 total yards.
Neither of these teams are great on defense, so this could be a high scoring affair. Louisiana’s problem has been turnovers and they must rectify those issues quickly or this could be a long season. I am a little surprised Texas State is only a two point favorite at home. I think that line is more a representation of Louisiana’s reputation as the class of the Sun Belt for the last 3 seasons. They aren’t the same team though, and I like the Bobcats to win comfortably at home.