Dollar General Bowl Vegas Odds & Liev Jackson NCAAF Free Picks: Ohio Bobcats vs Troy Trojans
Thursday, December 22, 2016
by Liev Jackson

Ohio and Troy Meet up in Dollar General Bowl

Dollar General Bowl Vegas Odds & Liev Jackson NCAAF Free Picks: Ohio Bobcats vs Troy Trojans

Ohio Bobcats vs. Troy Trojans

Bobcats: 8-5 (0-0 V)
Trojans: 9-3 (0-0 H)
When: 8:00 PM ET, Friday, December 23, 2016
Where: Ladd-Peebles Stadium, Mobile, Alabama
TV: ESPN

Troy University is less than a three-hour drive from Friday night’s Dollar General Bowl in Mobile Alabama. The team had its best season overall (9-3) since becoming an FBS team in 2001 and will look to get its first bowl win since beating these Ohio Bobcats in the New Orleans bowl in 2010.

Troy finished third in the Sun Belt after dropping two of their last three games. The first was a 35-3 defeat to Arkansas State who tied Appalachian State at the top with a 7-1 conference record. But the second was a 28-24 defeat to 5-7 Georgia Southern.

It was a classic back and forth affair with six lead changes taking place. Troy fought back from a 21-10 deficit to pull ahead 24-21 early in the fourth. But Georgia Southern got the go-ahead touchdown on their next possession and shut the Trojans out the rest of the way.

Troy has three great things going for it in this one. The first is a solid run defense that has kept teams to just 3.4 YPR. In college football any result under 4YPR is especially impressive going up against so many zone based schemes.

Furthermore QB Brandon Silvers leads a very efficient passing game that tends to hit players on the move and that makes them hard to stop against average pass defenses. And finally their 18 interceptions was 7th in FBS.

But if there’s one sore spot that has led to those late season losses it’s a hard time getting off the field on third downs. Opponents have converted on at least 40% of their opportunities in four of the past five games.

Ohio in the meanwhile is in the middle of its most successful run -under Frank Solich- since the 1940s teams of Don Peden.

He came over from Nebraska as a national title runner up and he has led the team to 88 wins over 12 years and eight bowl games, all since 2007. It broke a 39-year drought between bowls. On the other hand, winning that final game has been a problem with a 2-6 record overall including losses in the last two.

In last year’s final they collapsed bigtime, giving up 24 fourth quarter points to Appalachian State in a 31-29 defeat. The winning field goal came as time expired, so you can bet the bitter taste of that defeat is still being felt.

Ohio won the MAC East division with a 8-5 (6-2) record, but they lost two of their last three. The last one was a tough conference final against 13-0 17th ranked Western Michigan.

They kept up with one of the best offenses in the nation that day (8th in points scored with 43.5 PPG) before falling 29-23. Western Michigan got out to a 23-7 lead by halftime before the Bobcats started to claw their way back.

It was 26-23 after a Louie Zervos field goal with 7:14 to go, but that’s as close as they’d get as a middling offense could do no more. WMU outgained Ohio 404-251 on the day and won the time of possession battle 37:52-22:08.

This is a grinding team that will try to run the ball and control the clock. But in 6’3” Sebastian Smith they have a fast, big bodied receiver capable of making big plays. Their run D is also stellar as they’ve allowed just one rushing touchdown since mid-October and no one has averaged even 3 YPR in the past four games.

Bovada has the Troy listed as 4-points favorites and the game's total is sitting at 49 according to MyBookie.ag

On the NCAA Football Moneyline odds at BetOnline Troy are at -180.

Ohio Bobcats vs. Troy Trojans Dollar General Bowl Vegas Odds

Gm# Team
Opener
225 Ohio
49
226 Troy
-4
  Moneyline
+160/-180

Live Odds & Scores also our Free NCAA Football Fantasy Picks

Ohio was a 29-23 loser in its last match at home against Broncos. They covered the +16.5-point spread as underdogs, while the total score of 52 sent UNDER bettors to the payout window.

Ohio Bobcats vs. Troy Trojans Dollar General Bowl Vegas Odds & Trends

Ohio:
Ohio is 4-2 ATS in its last 6 games
Ohio is 7-3 SU in its last 10 games
The total has gone UNDER in 8 of Ohio's last 9 games

Troy:
Troy is 2-5 ATS in its last 7 games
Troy is 8-2 SU in its last 10 games

The Bottom Line:
If Troy (-4) is to win it’ll be through the air and that also plays to their advantage in Neal Brown’s big play system. The home crowd should help as well. The Pick: Troy 28-21.

Liev Jackson NCAAF Free Picks: Troy -4 & Under 49½ at Bovada

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Category

Tags
brandon silvers - frank solich - louie zervos - ohio bobcats - sebastian smith - troy trojans

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