It's Championship Saturday in the world of College Football and we will see a pair of teams square off that have won the last two Conference U.S.A. Title games. The UAB Blazers will travel to FAU Stadium in Boca Raton, Florida to battle it out with the Florida Atlantic Owls in this contest.
UAB Is Looking For Back-To-Back TitlesThe Blazers have had a solid 9-3 season, which includes a 6-2 mark in league play. They tied the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs atop Conference U.S.A West but won the tiebreaker thanks to a 20-14 home win over the Bulldogs back on November 23rd. The Blazers come in having won their last three games in a row, so they have some momentum heading into this game. Their last two wins have been by five points or less abut still, they were wins. The Blazers will now be looking to secure their 2nd league title in a row. They won last year's title game by a score of 27-25 over Middle Tennessee State. Can they make it two in a row? We shall see.
UAB enters this game off a 26-21 road win over North Texas. The defense has been strong down the stretch as they have now allowed just 15 ppg over their last three games. The Mean Green did throw for 268 yards on the Blazers and that was a bit of a shocker as UAB is currently 6th in the nation against the pass, allowing just 175.5 ypg through the air for the year. This pass defense will be tested against the Owls, who rank 31st in the nation in passing. UAB allowed the Mean Green just 21 yards on the ground and that is not a surprise as they are 4th in the nation against the run, allowing just 88.8 ypg this year. The Blazers are 12th in points allowed, giving up just 18.5 ppg.
The Blazers did not have a great game on offense against the Mean Green as they had just 310 yards of total offense in the contest, but it was enough to give them the win. The Blazers have been middle of the pack in the nation in rushing as they rank 66th in that category but they had 203 yards rushing against North Texas. Spencer Brown led the way with 111 yards and a TD. QB Dylan Hopkins has started the last five games and he has not put up impressive numbers. Hopkins has completed just 51.2% of his passes for 512 yards with three TDs and four INTs so far. He could have a good game in this one as the Owls are 95th against the pass.
Owls Are Looking For 6th Win In A RowThe Florida Atlantic Owls won this title game two years ago but they skidded to a 5-7 season last year. Lane Kiffin did an excellent job of getting them back to the title game this year. The Owls enter this game at 9-3 overall and they went 7-1 in league play. FAU has plenty of momentum of their own as they enter this contest having won their last five games in a row and the Owls have outscored their foes by 22 ppg over that stretch. The Owls have been awesome down the stretch, especially their offense, but can they keep it rolling against one of the best defenses in the nation? We shall see.
FAU comes in off a rather easy 34-17 home win over Southern Miss and they have jow gone 4-2 here at home for the year. The Owls had just 300 yards of total offense but it was more than enough. Chris Robisonhas had a solid season for the Owls and while he threw for just 156 yards in the win over the Golden Eagles, he did have three TDs to just one INT. For the year, Robinson has thrown for 3125 yards with 22 TDs and just five INTs but will have a tough test in this one against a UAB defense that is 11th in the nation against the pass, allowing just 183.2 ypg through the air this year.
The defense was strong down the stretch as the Owls allowed just 15.4 ppg over their last five games, and they will be taking on a less than stellar offense in this one. The Blazers have averaged just 25.1 ppg on the year, which is 95th in the nation and they are 101st in total offense. FAU allowed just 258 yards of total offense to the Golden Eagles, including just 60 yards on the ground. Their pass defense has struggled this year, but their run defense is 53rd and that could be key. If the Owls can stop the pass, then it will force Hopkins to try and beat them and he has not looked great.
Trends Are Courtesy Of Covers.com UAB is:
- 20-6-1 ATS in their last 27 conference games
- 12-5 ATS in their last 17 games following a straight-up win
Florida Atlantis is:
- 3-12-1 ATS in their last 16 games as a home favorite of 3.5-10.0