Big Al's Daily Angle: NCAA Basketball and NCAA Football Preview

by Big Al Staff

The Friday sports card features college basketball along with one game in college football. COVID issues prompted the cancellation of the previously scheduled Southern Mississippi/UTEP and Boise State/UNLV college football games. The Aston Villa-Newcastle United match scheduled for Friday afternoon is also postponed due to COVID concerns.

Two of the games on the college basketball card will be nationally-televised at 9 PM ET. Texas Tech hosts Troy on ESPN2. The Red Raiders won their first two games of the season before getting upset against Houston last Sunday by a 64-53 score as a 3-point favorite. Troy is 1-1 after they lost at UNC-Wilmington last Saturday by a 73-50 score. Texas Tech is a 26.5-point favorite with the total set at 136.5 (all odds from BetOnline).

On FS1, Oregon plays Seton Hall on a neutral court in Omaha. The Ducks lost their first game of the season on Wednesday in an 83-75 upset loss to Missouri as a 3-point favorite. The Pirates are 1-2 after a 76-63 upset loss at Rhode Island on Wednesday as a 2-point favorite. Oregon is a 2-point favorite with an over/under of 142.

The Friday night college football game on ESPN is a rematch of the last two conference championship games in the Sun Belt Conference. Appalachian State defeated Louisiana-Lafayette in the 2018 conference championship game by a 30-19 score. The Mountaineers followed that victory up last year with their second-straight conference championship in a 45-38 win over the Ragin’ Cajuns. Appalachian State won both of those games at home in Boone, North Carolina, which is once again the site for this showdown.

Louisiana returned 14 starters from last year’s team that finished 11-3 with a 27-17 victory over Miami (OH) in the Lending Tree Bowl. The Ragin’ Cajuns have clinched their third straight appearance in the Sun Belt Conference championship game with an 8-1 season. Louisiana’s lone loss was against Coastal Carolina, which they will get to avenge in this year’s Sun Belt championship game on December 19th. But first, the Ragin’ Cajuns have the opportunity to settle some past business in this revenge opportunity.

The Ragin’ Cajuns come off a 70-20 victory at Louisiana-Monroe last week as a four-touchdown favorite. Senior quarterback Levi Lewis completed 18 of 25 passes for 147 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions. Lewis is completing 62.2% of his passes this season for 2027 yards with 16 touchdown passes but along with seven interceptions. Lewis has added 233 rushing yards on the ground on a 6.3 yards-per-carry average with another five touchdowns. Lewis hands off to running backs Elijah Mitchell and Trey Ragas, who have each rushed for more than 600 yards. The Ragin’ Cajuns average 5.8 yards-per-carry as a team, which is the sixth-highest mark in the nation.

Appalachian State responded to their 34-23 loss at Coastal Carolina two weeks ago with a 47-10 victory at home against Troy last Saturday as a two-touchdown favorite. While the Mountaineers cannot defend their conference championship, they can still improve their standing for a bowl bid in this high-profile matchup. Appalachian State is 7-2 on the year, with their other loss being a 17-7 setback at Marshall.

BetOnline lists Appalachian State as a 3-point favorite with an over/under of 51.5. The ESPN broadcast starts at 8:30 PM ET.

All photographic images used for editorial content have been licensed from the Associated Press.

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