Memphis vs. Navy Odds, Predictions, Picks for Thursday: Your Betting Guide for This AAC Battle
Cody Glenn/Getty Images. Pictured: Seth Henigan.
Memphis vs. Navy Odds
|Memphis Odds||-11 (-115)|
|Navy Odds||+11 (-105)|
|Moneyline||-435 / +330|
|Over/Under||56 (-105 / -115)|
|Time||7:30 p.m. ET|
|Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute college football odds here.|
The Navy Midshipmen travel to Liberty Bowl Stadium on Thursday to face a Memphis Tigers team that is desperate to find their first AAC victory.
Navy opened the season 0-2 after being outscored 72-10 by Marshall and Air Force.
Since then, the Midshipmen are 1-2, but they have proven to be much tougher than their record appears. They lost by one score to a high-powered Houston offense and then, roared back from a 14-point fourth-quarter deficit to upset UCF. Last week, they led undefeated SMU by 14 before ultimately losing 31-24.
The opposite can be said for Memphis, which is trying to stop the bleeding after losing three games in a row.
The Tigers started out 3-0, including a win over an SEC opponent in Mississippi State. Since that victory, Memphis has lost its last three to UTSA, Temple and Tulsa by a combined 12 points.
The Memphis offense has been electric even through the three-game skid.
Whether the Tigers will be able to slow down the rushing attack of Navy could be the deciding factor in this matchup.
Memphis vs. Navy Betting Preview
The Memphis offense has been dominant all season long behind the arm of true freshman quarterback Seth Henigan.
Henigan is a gunslinger that has averaged over 320 passing yards per game while tossing 14 touchdowns to three interceptions. He’s averaging 9.0 yards per attempt while holding a 60% completion rate.
Last week against Tulsa, he threw for 463 yards on 57 pass attempts.
Henigan’s go-to receiver has been Calvin Austin III, who is averaging eight receptions and 140 yards per game. Austin III has eight touchdowns and has caught one in every game except against Temple.
The wide receiver has time and time again proven to be one of the most explosive players in all of college football.
CALVIN AUSTIN III CAUGHT THEM SLEEPING 🤯 pic.twitter.com/H5o828mFQ3
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) September 18, 2021
Wide receivers Sean Dykes and Javon Ivory have both proven to have big-play ability, with each logging a 100-yard receiving game this season.
Combined, the three receivers have contributed to 80% of Henigan’s passing yards on the season.
Last week, the Tigers outgained Tulsa by 197 total yards and added 14 more first downs, yet still lost the game due to untimely turnovers.
Memphis was a trendy dark-horse pick to win the AAC, but that pipedream has gone south over the last three weeks. The main contributor to that has been the lack of defense by the Tigers.
Memphis has allowed an average of 33 points and over 450 yards of offense per game.
Teams have consistently been able to move the ball down the field methodically against the Tigers’ defense. The unit ranks 65th in Rushing and 118th in Passing Success Rates, allowing 5.7 yards per play.
Last time out the Tigers allowed 5.1 yards per rush on Tulsa’s 46 carries. The Golden Hurricane rushed for 235 yards and three touchdowns in that game.
Navy should be following the same blueprint and find success on early downs rushing the ball.
The quarterback position has been a lingering issue for Navy since the Malcolm Perry era ended in 2019.
The Midshipmen have gone 4-11 straight up since his departure and rank outside the top 100 in scoring offense, averaging less than 17 points per game during that span.
After averaging five points per game in the first two contests, the Midshipmen offense has improved significantly, amounting 78 points over the last three games.
Navy owns a Rush Rate of 87%, which ranks third in the nation behind the other two service academies. It ranks 42nd in Rushing Success Rate and averages 3.7 yards per attempt. The Midshipmen’s ground attack has contributed to 78% of their total offensive yards.
After a quarterback carousel extended through the first month of the season, head coach Ken Niumatalolo has landed on Tai Lavatai for the starting roll. He should be able to lead the offense to paydirt often against a Memphis defense that was unable to stop the rush last week.
The Navy defense hasn’t seen the same improvement as the offense recently, allowing over 32 points per game.
They have been solid against the rush, allowing 3.6 yards per attempt.
They haven’t seen the same success against the pass, though, as they’ve allowed 8.3 yards per attempt (97th in the country). When removing the Air Force game from the equation, the Navy defense is allowing over 280 passing yards per game.
The unit has struggled to get pressure on the quarterback, as they totaled just five sacks in five games.
Navy lost both its starting cornerbacks last week against SMU. Senior Michael McMorris left the game due to injury and Jamal Glenn was booted for targeting.
The secondary is a major concern as they face one of the most pass-heavy offenses in the country.
Memphis vs. Navy Matchup Analysis
Toggle the dropdowns below to hide or show how Navy and Memphis match up statistically:
Navy Offense vs. Memphis Defense
|** Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)|
Memphis Offense vs. Navy Defense
|** Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)|
Pace of Play / Other
|SP+ Special Teams||104||64|
|Plays per Minute||120||7|
|Rush Rate||86.7% (3)||51.4% (82)|
Memphis vs. Navy Betting Pick
Navy has started to find its offensive stride now that it has an established quarterback in Lavatai. The offense has continued to show improvement the last three games and will find success against a Memphis defense that was shredded on the ground last week.
There have been two constants through all six of the Tigers’ games this season: the offense will score in a flash and the defense can’t get off the field.
They have scored 28 or more points in all six games this season and Henigan has proven to be the real deal. But the defense has also allowed 28 points or more against each FBS opponent this season.
This will be a back-and-forth game, which will see two teams taking different paths to get to the same outcome. Navy will find the end zone through methodical marches down the field while Memphis will respond in a flash behind an offense that ranks seventh in Plays per Minute.