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Dr. Bob Previews NORTH TEXAS (+6.5) Vs. MTSU

LOUISVILLE, KY - OCTOBER 18:  Quarterback Dwight Dasher #9 of the Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders looks to throw against the Louisville Cardinals during the game at Papa John's Cardinal Stadium on October 18, 2008 in Louisville, Kentucky.  Louisville defeated Middle Tennessee 42-23. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Robert StollCorrespondent ISeptember 24, 2009

Middle Tenn (-6.5) 28 NORTH TEXAS 26

Over/Under Total: 52.0
04:00 PM Pacific Time Saturday, Sep-26

I'm not really impressive with Middle Tennessee's wins over Memphis and Maryland, as Memphis has been out-gained 4.6 yards per play to 6.2 yppl by a schedule of teams that is about 7 points worse than average while Maryland has been out-gained 5.3 yppl to 6.9 yppl by an average schedule of teams.

The Blue Raiders certainly don't appear good enough to be favored by nearly a touchdown on the road against an improved North Texas team that is decent offensively and likely to get starting quarterback Riley Dodge back from a 1 1/2 game absence. Dodge was a top 10 recruited quarterback out of high school and came to North Texas to play for his Dad, whom he also played for in high school.

Dodge and backup Nathan Tune, who has been perhaps even better so far this season, have both completed 66% of their passes while RB Cam Montgomery has averaged 5.3 ypr. Middle Tennessee is led by dual threat quarterback Dwight Dasher, who had proven so far this season that he can be more than just a good runner.

Dasher has averaged only 5.7 yards per pass play, but he's performed well the last two weeks against weaker pass defenses. These teams both rate at about 0.1 yppl worse than average offensively and Middle Tennessee is only slightly better than North Texas on defense.

The Mean Green do have horrible special teams that have been known to cost them games, but I think this game should be pretty evenly fought and Middle Tennessee applies to a negative 23-68-1 ATS road letdown situation that is based on last week's upset win at Maryland.

I'd consider North Texas a Strong Opinion at +7 or more.

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