North Texas Preview

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Opponent: North Texas Mean Green
Location:  TBD
Game Time:  TBD
Television:  GamePlan or ESPN360.com, which ATVS happens to get.

This is the logo of the North Texas Mean Green, our opponent for Week #3 of the 2008 football season.  North Texas is not a good team.  They're probably the worst team we play this year, in fact, assuming we play them.  As of press time (early in the morning), the venue for this game had not been announced, but it appeared from models that Ike would not threaten Baton Rouge, and by the time this is published, there may have been an announcement.  I

To give you an idea about how bad the Mean Green is, North Texas is 0-2 on the year so far, having lost to K-State 45-6 and then to Tulsa 56-26.  That Tulsa game, amazingly, wasn't as close as the score would indicate.  

K-State outgained North Texas 471-205.  Tulsa kept it a little closer, getting 555 yards and giving up 450.  Tulsa was up 42-10 at halftime and gave up most of those yards when the game was essentially over.

Both Kansas State and Tulsa passed all over the Mean Green.  Tulsa is a passing team by trade, and they got 420 yards in the air, but K-State runs a more traditional offense and they got 306 yards.  And these numbers do not include any stat-skewing 80 yard plays or anything like that.  The longest pass play from scrimmage in either of these two games was 43 yards.  So K-State and Tulsa were able to get yardage consistently through the air.  

In other words, you can pass on this team.  Their opponents are completing passes at about a 70% rate, if you don't count backup quarterbacks coming in to mop up and not doing quite so well.  They've given up 9.2 yards per pass attempt, which is insane.  This means that if LSU can't move the ball in the air against this team, we will have problems passing all year.

I'm not expecting anything like Tulsa's 420 yards of passing offense.  We just don't run the kind of offense that is going to generate those kinds of numbers unless we get a few flukey 80-yard pass plays.  But I do think we can improve on the 193 yards passing we had against Appalachian State.

I think if we get 250 yards passing and 250 yards rushing, that will be great.  

Offensively, North Texas has run the ball effectively.  Their leading rusher is Cam Montgomery, who has 117 yards on 17 carries, averaging 6.9 yards per carry.  Freshman Lance Dunbar averages 7.2 yards per carry on 10 carries.  That's solid, but because North Texas has never played with a lead, they really haven't had their running backs tested.  I don't expect they'll play with a lead much this week either.

I also expect we will be seeing a lot of young players in this game, as the score should be out of reach by halftime.  It would also be nice to see us force some turnovers.  We did not do that against Appalachian State, though i think that will come as the season progresses.

Overall, this is one of those games where you get young players some experience, try to avoid injuries, and don't show your future opponents (Auburn) anything they can gameplan against.

 

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