Hello, Herd fans!
The East Division race comes down to Western Kentucky beating Marshall, with Old Dominion possibly picking up the pieces in case of an upset. Louisiana Tech plays Southern Mississippi on Friday, but the Bulldogs have clinched the West.
Southern Miss and two other teams are fighting for a bowl bid. If all three fail, only *4* of the 13 teams will be bowl-eligible.
With some format changes, here we go:
East: WKU 6-1, Old Dominion 6-1, Florida International 4-3, MTSU 4-3, Charlotte 3-4, Marshall 2-5, Florida Atlantic 2-5
West: La Tech 6-1 (clinched), Texas-San Antonio 4-3, Southern Miss 3-4, North Texas 3-4, Rice 2-6, Texas-El Paso 1-6
Bowl eligibility chart
Bowl tie-ins: New Mexico, Boca Raton, Bahamas, New Orleans, Hawaii, Heart of Dallas (6); secondary partnership with Independence Bowl
Eligible: WKU, ODU, MTSU, La. Tech (4)
Ineligible: Florida International, Marshall, FAU, Rice, UTEP, Charlotte.
Still fighting, with schedule
UTSA 5-6: Charlotte
Southern Miss 5-6: La Tech
North Texas 5-6: at UTEP
Notable stat leaders
Rushing yards: Aaron Jones, UTEP 1,472, I’Tavius Mathers, MTSU 1,291, Ito Smith, Southern Miss 1,194.
Passing yards: Ryan Higgins, La Tech 3,460, Mike White, WKU 3,373, Brent Stockstill, MTSU 2,801.
Pass efficiency: Mike White, WKU 179.5, Ryan Higgins, La Tech 177.2, David Washington, ODU 155.4.
Receptions: Trent Taylor, La Tech 103, Richie James, MTSU 93, Taywan Taylor, WKU 77.
Receiving yards: Richie James, MTSU 1,343, Trent Taylor, La Tech 1,343, Taywan Taylor, WKU 1,340.
Team scoring: Louisiana Tech 45.8, WKU 42.5, MTSU 36.7.
Team total yardage: Louisiana Tech 540.7, WKU 509.8, MTSU 493.7.
This week’s offerings, in order of interest (MU-WKU not included):
FIU (4-7, 4-3) at Old Dominion (8-3, 6-1), 3:30 p.m., ESPN3: I’d almost give interim Ron Cooper coach-of-the-year honors for leading the Panthers to a 4-4 mark after the firing of Ron Turner. But that award belongs to the Monarchs’ Bobby Wilder.
LINE: ODU by 13 1/2. FIU’S INTEREST WANES.
Louisiana Tech (8-3, 6-1) at Southern Miss (5-6, 3-4), 4 p.m. Friday, ESPNews: The Golden Eagles’ missing a bowl game would be the biggest collapse story in C-USA, if not for Marshall.
Charlotte (4-7, 3-4) at UTSA (5-6, 4-3): 7 p.m., Campus Insiders: The Roadrunners’ Frank Wilson should get some coach-of-the-year love, too..
LINE: UTSA by 10. ROADRUNNERS WILL ROLL
FAU (3-8, 2-5) at Middle Tennessee (7-4, 4-3), 5:30 p.m., beIN Sports: If the Owls win in what could be Charlie Partridge’s last game and Marshall loses, the Herd finishes in the East Division basement.
LINE: MTSU by 13.5. THE OWLS LOSE INTEREST.
Rice (3-8) at Stanford (8-3), 8 p.m., Pac-12 Networks: Why?
LINE: Stanford by 36. CARDS ARE THE SMARTER PICK.
Last week vs. line: 3-2 (including MU game). Season: 36-44.