NCAA Football Vegas Odds: North Texas at No 2 Alabama Crimson Tide
Saturday, September 17, 2011
by Frank Martin

Trent Richardson - NCAA Football Vegas Odds: North Texas at No 2 Alabama Crimson Tide

After passing a tough road test last week at Penn State, Saturday's home game against North Texas Mean Green figures to be little more than a tune-up for the Southeastern Conference schedule for No. 2 Alabama Crimson Tide.

The North Texas Mean Green defense hasn't been so mean, allowing more than 40 points in losses to Florida International and Houston, and it won't get any easier against the Alabama Crimson Tide. Junior running back Trent Richardson posted his fifth career 100-yard rushing game last week and has scored five touchdowns in two games.

Sophomore quarterback AJ McCarron threw two interceptions in an opening win against Kent State, but he rebounded with a solid game against Penn State, passing for 163 yards and a touchdown with no interceptions. Alabama has won all three meetings, including 53-7 in 2009.

- North Texas Mean Green @ #2 Alabama Crimson Tide
When: 7:30 PM ET, Saturday, September 17, 2011
Where: Bryant-Denny Stadium, Tuscaloosa, Alabama
TV: None

The Crimson Tide have opened as 47-point favorites on Bet Online Sportsbook’s Live NCAA Football Odds.

North Texas Mean Green (0-2): The Mean Green's offense was held out of the end zone in a season-opening loss to Florida International, with the defense accounting for both touchdowns. The offense came to life somewhat against Houston with true freshman quarterback Andrew McNulty providing a spark. Running back Lance Dunbar ranks third on the school's all-time rushing list with 3,214 yards, third-most among active FBS players. North Texas has a weapon in sophomore Brelan Chancellor, who leads the nation in all-purpose yards with 297 per game. Chancellor, who was named the Sun Belt Conference Special Teams Player of the Week after the Houston game, averages 28.4 yards per kick return.

Alabama Crimson Tide (2-0): The Alabama Crimson Tide have huge conference games at home against Arkansas and at Florida in the next two weeks. Alabama ranks fifth in total defense, allowing 170.5 yards per game. That unit is led by safety Mark Barron, who was named SEC Defensive Player of the Week after he had an interception and a fumble recovery. Alabama gets senior wide receiver Darius Hanks back from a two-game suspension in compliance with the NCAA's redshirt rules. Hanks started 13 games last season and made 32 catches for 456 yards and three touchdowns.

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1. Alabama allowed only 250 total yards of offense against Penn State, marking the 31st time in coach Nick Saban's 56-game tenure that the Crimson Tide has held an opponent to less than 300 yards.

2. North Texas is 3-32 all-time against SEC teams. The Mean Green's last win over an SEC team was a 21-14 upset at Tennessee in 1975.

3. Alabama is 17-2 in September games under Saban, including 14-0 since 2008.

NCAA PREDICTION: Alabama 57, North Texas 3 - The Tide rolls into a key stretch of SEC games and gets a chance to rest some starters in the second half.

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Tags
aj mccarron - alabama crimson tide - andrew mcnulty - brelan chancellor - darius hanks - lance dunbar - mark barron - nick saban - north texas mean green - trent richardson

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