Old Dominion Monarchs vs. Marshall Thundering Herd Picks and Game Preview -- 10/09/2021

by Chuck Sommers

Game time: 2 p.m. ET, October 9, 2021
Venue: Joan C. Edwards Stadium, Huntington, WV
Where to watch: CBS Sports Network

Opening Odds at USA Sportsbooks


DraftKings: Marshall -19.5
BetMGM: Marshall -19.5
Caesars: Marshall -19.5

Season record
Old Dominion: 1-4 (0-1 Conference USA)
Marshall: 2-3 (0-1 C-USA)

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Old Dominion - Marshall preview and analysis


Recent form
Old Dominion: lost 28-21 at UTEP on Oct. 2
Marshall: lost 34-28 at Middle Tennessee on Oct. 2

This is a bit of an interesting play that could benefit the road team.

The Old Dominion Monarchs will be on the road for the second straight week to take on the high-flying Marshall Thundering Herd on Saturday.

This isn't a matchup of top Subdivision powerhouses under any stretch. Marshall comes in losers of three straight, all on one-score games. The Herd lost by six points against the Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders as 11-point favorites and needed two touchdowns in the fourth quarter to cut it close.

Grant Wells threw 47 times to total 321 yards and a touchdown, but also threw two interceptions. Rasheen Ali only carried the ball 19 times for 113 yards but had three touchdowns to carry the Marshall offense.

Unfortunately being down by 20 points through three quarters will get you away from the run game.

But it speaks a lot to the fact that MTSU was outgained 493-314 and still won because they forced six turnovers and had the ball for almost seven minutes longer than Marshall.

The Herd has a dangerous offense, but they're facing a scrappy Old Dominion defense that has allowed 179 yards through the air. The Monarchs are coming into this week on a three-game losing streak of their own. Old Dominion had a 21-20 lead in the fourth quarter against a really strong UTEP Miners club, only to go cold in the fourth.

The Old Dominion players on offense aren't going to wow anyone, especially against this Marshall defense. It only totaled 282 yards in 25:32 time of possession, but also turned it over twice to stall any progress from quarterback D.J. Mack Jr. It was still a tough go for Mack, going 20 of 34 for 194 yards, a touchdown, and an interception.

Prediction


Marshall's pass attack should be the difference this weekend and ultimately pull out a victory. But Old Dominion has shown a knack to score and will keep this one close. I'd purchase the extra point for some comfort. Marshall by 16

Betting trends


Old Dominion is 5-7 against the spread as an underdog in its last 12, but 0-13 straight up as a dog.

Marshall is 3-11 ATS as a home favorite but 11-3 straight up.

Players to watch


Old Dominion: Two receivers should see more targets their way. Ali Jennings had the lone receiving touchdown last week on three receptions for 44 yards. Stone Smartt also had a big game with two catches for 40 yards. Mack has to use his targets more.

Marshall: Xavier Gaines will need a much better input offensively after a quiet Saturday. He had three receptions for 24 yards. Fortunately the likes of Corey Gammage, Willie Johnson and Shadeed Ahmed stepped up, but Gaines is a sneaky contributor among the Marshall players.

Statistical leaders


Old Dominion:
Passing: D.J. Mack Jr. -- 753 yards, 4 TD, 5 INT
Rushing: Elijah Davis -- 279 yards, 2 TD
Receiving: Zack Kuntz -- 239 yards, 2 TD

Marshall:
Passing: Grant Wells -- 1,701 yards, 6 TD, 7 INT
Rushing: Rasheen Ali -- 489 yards, 11 TD
Receiving: Corey Gammage -- 446 yards

Don't miss our champion handicappers' free picks and expert football picks today. And if you enjoyed this Old Dominion - Marshalprediction, be sure to drop by every day for our daily NCAA projections and previews.

Chuck Sommers

About the Author:

Chuck Sommers has camped outside of sportsbooks since he can remember, learning the tricks and nuances of the trade. He still has nightmares of betting $5,000 on the Raiders in the Tuck Rule game but has since turned that to 25 years of veteran handicapping greatness. You can find him mostly in the shadows at the Red Rock or Aliante casinos wondering if the over is cashing on any given Sunday.

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

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