Appalachian State-Middle Tennessee Betting Guide: A Clear Motivated Side in New Orleans Bowl
USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Thomas Hennigan and Brent Stockstill
2018 New Orleans Bowl Betting Odds: Appalachian State-Middle Tennessee
- Odds: Appalachian State -7
- Over/Under: 50.5
- Date: Saturday, Dec. 15
- Time: 9 p.m. ET
- TV: ESPN
>> All odds as of Saturday morning. Download The Action Network App to get real-time bowl odds and win probabilities on your bets.
Appalachian State won the first ever Sun Belt Championship to earn a spot in the New Orleans Bowl, where it will take on a senior-laden Middle Tennessee State.
App State had a 2.11 yards-per-play differential during the regular season, the sixth-best mark in the country. The Mountaineers didn’t miss a beat under new quarterback Zac Thomas, but did lose star back Jalin Moore for the season in October.
MTSU has been known for offense in the past, but the 46th-ranked defense per S&P+ helped the Blue Raiders go 8-5 against the spread this season. They had covered five straight before losing to UAB in the Conference USA Championship Game.
Odds Movement for Appalachian State-Middle Tennessee
By Danny Donahue
Bets on this game are split exactly 50-50 at the time of writing. And with 54% of the money on Middle Tennessee, this line has fallen off the key number of 7 down to 6.5.
The total features a much more significant bet vs. dollar discrepancy, as the over has drawn 58% of bettors but just 33% of money wagered. With two-thirds of the cash landing on the under, this number has fallen from 50.5 to 50.
Trends to Know
By John Ewing
It pays to be contrarian in bowl games. Bettors willing to take unpopular underdogs, like Middle Tennessee State, have returned a profit of +33.76 units since 2005.
By Evan Abrams
There are two types of college football bowl games played at Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans. There is the December bowl game, which is usually two non-Power 5 schools, and then there is the big New Year’s Six game.
Since 2005, when a bowl game in December is played at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, the over is 9-3 (75%), profiting bettors 5.5 units, making the Superdome the most profitable stadium for December bowl overs in this span.
Stockstill Should Have Time to Throw
MTSU quarterback Brent Stockstill will have time to throw the ball, which at times has been an issue this year for an offensive line that ranks 99th in Adjusted Sack Rate (112th on Passing Downs).
App State is not the team that will exploit that deficiency, as the Mountaineers rank 118th in that same category on Passing Downs.
The main question: Can MTSU hit any explosive plays in the passing game against a defense that just doesn’t give up any (rank No. 2 defending passing explosiveness).
Who’s More Motivated?
If anybody watched the MTSU postgame press conference after their conference title loss, you know the Raiders will be fired up for this game.
Stockstill is 2-5 in bowls since his arrival in Murfreesboro in 2006; one of those wins came at this same bowl in 2009. The Blue Raiders will appear in a bowl for the fourth straight year.
I certainly give the motivational edge to MTSU here against an App State team that lost its head coach and has won bowl games in each of the past three seasons.
By Steve Petrella
App State lost coach Scott Satterfield to Louisville last week, and longtime defensive line coach Mark Ivey will take over for the New Orleans Bowl.
Satterfield’s took coordinators Bryan Brown and Frank Ponce to get a head start on recruiting for the Dec. 19 early signing deadline. Co-offensive coordinator Shawn Clark may call plays and is candidate for the head coaching job.
Satterfield had previously called plays, so this will be Clark’s debut in that regard.
Bet to Watch
By Collin Wilson