Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#193 Charlotte vs.
#194 Old Dominion (ODU)
Saturday, November 27, 2021 at 2:00pm EST
Written by Eric P.

The Old Dominion Monarchs play host to the Charlotte 49ers on Saturday afternoon from Kornblau Field at S.B. Ballard Stadium. In what is expected to an interesting CUSA match-up on the weekend, both teams are eyeing just one more win for bowl eligibility. The 49ers come in having lost four of their last five games, including two in a row, and will need to turn the tides on the road if they don't want this to be their last game. For the Monarchs, they've had one of the largest turn arounds in the country from last season and a big part of that is winning their last four games. There isn't a doubt who has the best momentum in this match up but having lost two in a row to Charlotte overall, this will certainly be a great battle between conference foes.

49ers Eyeing Bowl Elgibility

Charlotte's season started so strong with a win against Duke that definitely turned some heads in the region, but a poor last month now has the 49ers unsure if bowl eligibility is even in their future. They've lost two in a row, both by double-digits, and have lost four of five overall, with the lone win coming in overtime. Double-digit losses have become a staple of the program over the last six weeks and now things will only get tougher as they go on the road against one of the conference's hottest teams.

Charlotte also continues to battle some injuries, with one player already ruled out for the weekend and another ruled as questionable. Davondre Robinson (bicep) has been ruled out indefinitely but Victor Tucker remains questionable. Tucker, the team's second-leading receiver, would be a massive loss for an offense needing all the help that they can get in the finale.

Charlotte's offense is averaging just over 26 points per game, which falls right in line with their total yardage per game. It's clear the offense is a concern, which has only gotten worse of late, but the 49ers still have time to salvage it.

Chris Reynolds remains the leader at quarterback and has had a great season. He's tossed for an average of 245 yards per game through the air, with 24 touchdowns and only seven interceptions. Unfortunately, he hasn't had a ton of help on the ground and without the 49ers controlling the possession game, they'll continue to have a hard time finding wins.

While the offense has had its highs this season, Charlotte's defense still remains a key handicap. The 49ers rank 1-1st nationally in scoring defense and outside the top 100 in nearly every defensive category. Charlotte has three tacklers all with over 60 tackles on the season, while Markees Watts is one whose name to hear. Sitting third on the team in tackles, he leads the way in sacks by far. Watts has the ability to make his name heard in this one but without it, it's going to be another long Thanksgiving weekend for the whole Charlotte family.

Monarchs Are Story Of CUSA

Old Dominion hasn't wasted any time turning the program around in year one of the new regimes. It was a slow start to the season but the Monarchs have won four in a row, taking down some of the teams that have dominated CUSA over the last few seasons. Nobody in CUSA has more confidence and momentum than Old Dominion right now and with both their offense and defense rankings inside the top 90, their numbers bode well to find the win in the finale.

Unlike their opponents, Old Dominion comes in with a full bill of health. While Charlotte only has two injuries to worry about, the added depth, even if minimal, might be enough in what is expected to be a close matchup.

Charlotte averages only 0.5 fewer points than Charlotte does but their ground game could go a long way to helping them control the game. They rank 31st nationally in rushing attempts per game and 59th in rushing yards per game and given Charlotte's struggles defensively, having to stay on the field and stop the run could be problematic.

Hayden Wolff is the leader at quarterback, averaging 178 yards per game through the air. Blake Watson is the key though, averaging 103 rushing yards per game as one of the best backs in CUSA. Combining with Elijah Davis (50 rushing yards per game) gives them some depth at the position. If the Monarchs can continue to move the ball on the ground, coming away with the win shouldn't be a problem.

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Full-Game Side Bet

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Rating:

Old Dominion is playing the best football of anyone in CUSA right now and considering they have the home-field advantage, they could have their way with nearly anyone in the conference this weekend. Given that their opponent is Charlotte, one of the teams with the least momentum in the conference right now and a poor defense, they might get blown off the field in this one. Old Dominion can control the game on the ground and without Charlotte being able to get their defense off the field, the Monarchs will troll their way to their sixth victory and bowl eligibility. Additionally, according to covers.com, for Old Dominion, they are 4-0 ATS in their last four games overall and are 5-1 ATS in their last six games on field turf. For Charlotte, they are 0-5-1 ATS in their last six games as an underdog, re 0-4-1 ATS in their last five games as a road underdog, and are 0-3-1 ATS in their last four road games against a team with a losing home record.

Prediction: Old Dominion (-9.5)

Full-Game Total Pick

Insiders Status:

Rating:

Fewer than 56 points have been scored in two of the last three times that these two teams have met and for Old Dominion, fewer than 56 points have been scored in three of their last four games overall. Charlotte is struggling to move the ball and then Old Dominion's focus on running the ball, controlling the clock, and slowing down the game, all will contribute to a slow scoring affair. With bowl eligibility on the line for both sides, a slow approach might be key to this one. Additionally, according to covers.com, for Old Dominion, the under is 5-1 in their last six games overall and are 5-1 in their last six conference games.

Prediction: Under 55.5
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Written By Eric Ploch , "Eric P."

Eric grew up surrounded by sports, whether it was spending the weekend catching games in person or on tv, or heading out to the fields to play whatever sport was in season. What started as a hobby, soon became a passion, as he became the sports editor of his high school newspaper, then wrote for his university newspaper during his undergrad years. After obtaining a degree in Sports Operations and Promotions, and spending 8 years deeply immersed in the sports world, Eric decided to take his love for analytics and predictions, and his experience, to online sports fans everywhere. James is now an integral part of our team here at StatSalt and has also been a very successful sports bettor over the years. Be sure and follow him daily.