Miami (Ohio) vs. North Texas Odds & Picks for Frisco Football Classic: Bet This Short Favorite

Miami (Ohio) vs. North Texas Odds & Picks for Frisco Football Classic: Bet This Short Favorite article feature image
Credit:

Matthew Pearce and Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured, from left: North Texas Mean Green running back DeAndre Torrey (3) and Miami RedHawks running back Kevin Davis (26).

  • Thursday's Frisco Football Classic has seen odds movement, as the updated over/under is trending upward as Miami (Ohio) remains a small favorite over North Texas.
  • We like the short favorite in this one, and BJ Cunningham explains why in his full betting guide.
  • Check out Cunningham's breakdown and betting pick for this college football bowl game.

Miami (Ohio) vs. North Texas Odds

Thursday, Dec. 23
3:30 p.m. ET
ESPN
Miami (OH) Odds
Spread Total Moneyline
-2.5
-110
56
-110o / -110u
-131
North Texas Odds
Spread Total Moneyline
+2.5
-110
56
-110o / -110u
+110
Odds via PointsBet. Get up-to-the-minute college football odds here.

Frisco Football Classic
Thursday, Dec. 23 · Frisco, TX

North Texas and Miami (Ohio) meet on Thursday afternoon for the Frisco Football Classic.

North Texas’ season appeared to be doomed after starting the season 1-6, with that one win coming on the first weekend of the season over FCS Northwestern State. However, the Mean Green rattled off five straight wins to end the season, including a 45-23 upset of Conference USA champion UTSA.

The RedHawks, meanwhile, finished the regular season in heartbreaking fashion, losing a winner-take-all game against Kent State in overtime to decide who won the MAC East. Miami played much better down the stretch when starting quarterback Brett Gabbert returned from injury.

Let’s break down which side will finish the season with a win on Thursday afternoon.


Miami (Ohio) RedHawks

RedHawks Offense

Miami may have struggled from a Success Rate perspective this season, but boy, is the offense explosive. The RedHawks rank ninth in the country in explosiveness because they average 6.1 yards per play.

Gabbert returned from injury for the Ball State game on Oct. 23, and in the final five games of the season with him under center, the RedHawks put up 6.8 yards per play as the quarterback averaged 9.4 yards per attempt.

Gabbert was one of the best quarterbacks in the MAC this season, helping the RedHawks rank ninth in EPA per pass. He especially thrives in getting the ball down the field, with a PFF passing grade over 89 on throws more than 10 yards downfield.

Gabbert should be able to beat a North Texas secondary that is very suspect.

Brett Gabbert lets it FLY for the Redhawks 🎯 pic.twitter.com/jU1vRCTpMr

— PFF College Football (@PFF_College) November 17, 2021

The problem for Miami is it has really struggled to run the ball, averaging only 4.2 yards per carry and ranking 95th in Rushing Success Rate. Stopping the rush is the strength of North Texas’ defense, which ranks ninth in Rushing Success Rate Allowed.

We might see Gabbert attempt 40-plus passes, which is nothing new to him, having done so twice in his last four games.

RedHawks Defense

Miami’s defense has been built on creating turnovers this season. The RedHawks are 17th in the nation in Havoc and have put a ton of pressure on the opposing quarterback, as PFF has them graded as the 37th-best pass-rushing unit in college football.

North Texas has done a fantastic job of protecting the quarterback, but Miami will have to stop the run if it wants to slow down the Mean Green.

The RedHawks have been very average against the run, allowing 4.3 yards per carry and ranking 59th in Rushing Success Rate Allowed. They also rank outside the top 80 in Defensive Line Yards and Stuff Rate, which is not good news against North Texas’ run-heavy attack.

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North Texas Mean Green

Mean Green Offense

The Mean Green offense plays very fast and runs the ball at an incredibly high rate. North Texas is seventh in the country in plays per minute and carries the rock 62.6% of the time, which is the 14th-most in college football.

North Texas thrives on the ground thanks to star running back DeAndre Torrey, who averaged 4.9 yards per carry with 13 touchdowns this season. Torrey led the Mean Green to a top-30 ranking in Rushing Success Rate, and the offensive line put up similar numbers in Offensive Line Yards.

This run by @MeanGreenFB's Deandre Torrey is UNREAL! pic.twitter.com/AUjuYti9iT

— Stadium (@Stadium) November 27, 2021

Quarterback Austin Aune hasn’t been called upon very much this season, and when he has been, it hasn’t been pretty. He’s averaging only 6.7 yards per attempt with a 67.0 PFF passing grade.

While Miami’s secondary has been terrible this season, Aune likely won’t be able to exploit it.

Mean Green Defense

North Texas put up some pretty impressive defensive numbers this season, ranking 15th in Success Rate Allowed. However, it was one of the worst teams in college football at preventing explosiveness, ranking 128th.

The Mean Green secondary had all sorts of issues this season, allowing 7.9 yards per attempt while ranking 123rd in explosive passing allowed and 106th in terms of a coverage grade, per PFF. That’s a bad matchup against Gabbert and the Miami passing attack, which was 19th in passing explosiveness this season.

One of the main reasons North Texas gave up so many explosive plays is because it ranks 104th in tackling, per PFF. The Mean Green also really struggled to put pressure on the quarterback, ranking 122nd in the country in pass-rush grade.

Don’t expect North Texas to exploit Miami’s weakness on offense, which is its offensive line.


Miami (OH) vs. North Texas Matchup Analysis

Toggle the dropdowns below to hide or show how Miami (OH) and North Texas match up statistically:

Miami (OH) Offense vs. North Texas Defense
Offense
Defense
Edge
Rush Success 95 9
Line Yards 68 34
Pass Success 56 37
Pass Blocking** 121 122
Big Play 49 41
Havoc 11 48
Finishing Drives 76 37
** Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)

North Texas Offense vs. Miami (OH) Defense
Offense
Defense
Edge
Rush Success 30 59
Line Yards 26 85
Pass Success 102 100
Pass Blocking** 112 25
Big Play 88 105
Havoc 14 17
Finishing Drives 113 63
** Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)

Pace of Play / Other
PFF Tackling 44 104
Coverage 108 106
Middle 8 75 77
SP+ Special Teams 107 108
Plays per Minute 60 7
Rush Rate 50.6% (92) 62.6% (14)

Data via College Football Data, FootballOutsiders, SP+, PFF and SportSource Analytics.


Miami (OH) vs. North Texas Betting Pick

Given how susceptible North Texas is in the secondary, this one could get out of hand quickly if Gabbert throws the ball the way he has over the last five games.

I have the RedHawks projected as -6.1 favorites, so I like them at -2.5.

Pick: Miami (Ohio) -2.5

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