Week 9 of the college football mid-major betting report is here. What a difference a week makes! MTSU was beaten in double overtime by rival Western Kentucky two weeks ago. How did they respond? They went to Missouri and won outright. The money poured in on Missouri as bettors figured the SEC would take care of business. Missouri closed as a 9.5-point favorite. MTSU pulled off the big upset.
Through the rest of the season, I'll continue to follow everyone associated with the MTSU football program on Twitter. I'll also be reading the work of beat writers and following team press conferences. Any way I can, I'll be looking to find extra bits of information to try to gain an edge. Essentially, I'll be looking to make myself an expert on this MTSU Blue Raiders team. The goal of this article is to show that specialization can be a profitable sports betting strategy.
This is the sixth straight season I'm doing the mid-major report for Doc's Sports. How have the selections on the mid-major betting report done? Overall, the record is 32 wins and 24 losses with a gain of $1,460. We are coming off a really strong season following the Temple Owls. The selections on the Temple games last year went 11-4 and we gained $1,050 over the course of the season.
There will be a selection on each game at the end of the weekly article. We'll be using the Doc's Sports Unit Betting System for every pick, which will allow readers to follow along and track the results.
Middle Tennessee State's 51-45 win at Missouri was a really big win for the program. The Blue Raiders offense was extremely balanced in the win. MTSU ran for 311 yards and threw for 284 more. I'Tavius Mathers had 28 carries for 215 yards. Mathers has been amazing for this offense this season. Brent Stockstill is normally known only for his passing, but he ran for 81 yards on six carries last weekend. Seven different players had at least one reception last weekend.
Missouri racked up 629 yards last weekend. The Tigers ran for 348 yards and threw for 281. MTSU's defense has had trouble stopping the run several times this year, and that issue showed up again last weekend. Two running backs topped 100 yards rushing for Missouri last weekend.
Missouri actually had 36 first downs compared to only 27 for MTSU. How was MTSU able to win despite a slight disadvantage in the statistical battle? The Blue Raiders didn't turn the ball over at all, while Missouri had two turnovers. Additionally, Missouri had 13 penalties for 114 yards.
Last week's two unit selection on MTSU +7 was a winner.
Notes of Interest
-Aldo Giovanni Amato, MTSU beat writer for the Daily News Journal, wrote about an awesome moment between Coach Rick Stockstill and his son, quarterback Brent Stockstill. The moment occurred after the win at Missouri. Rick choked up while talking about the performance of his son in last week's game. He said, "He's the toughest guy I've ever coached. I love him and I love his competitive spirit." After the game, Brent showed he has equal admiration for his Dad, tweeting out a picture of Rick with the word "GOAT" (Greatest of All Time) as the caption. Very cool!
-To further illustrate how good Mathers has been for the Blue Raiders in the backfield, consider this statistic. Vince Hall owns the MTSU single-season record for rushing yards with 1,439. Mathers has 940 so far this year, and the team still has five regular-season games remaining. Mathers has a great shot at breaking the record. It's crazy to believe that before the season, the running game was considered the biggest question mark for this team. Mathers has taken care of that problem in a hurry!
-Rick Stockstill talked about how important it was for his team to get back on track right away after losing the previous week to Western Kentucky during his press conference this week. He also said the players found a ton of joy in winning on the road against an SEC opponent, especially since no one thought they could do it. Stockstill said, "That joy will carry them for a long time. They'll remember it the rest of their lives."
-MTSU picked up a big nonconference win, and now it is up to them to focus back on winning games inside Conference USA. They travel to take on a Florida International team that has played much better in recent weeks.
-MTSU is 5-1-1 ATS in their last seven Conference USA contests.
-FIU is 7-19 ATS in their last 26 games against a team with a winning record.
-The 'under' is 6-2 in MTSU's last eight conference games.
-The 'over' is 12-3-1 in FIU's last 16 home games.
MTSU vs. FIU College Football Odds
MTSU opened as 16.5 point favorites at Bookmaker. The line jumped to 17.5 before settling back down to MTSU -17. The posted total here opened at 63 points, and there has been no movement there. Thus far this is a game that hasn't attracted much interest from bettors.
MTSU vs. FIU College Football Picks
This is a letdown spot for MTSU, so I'm not going to lay the big number. I do think the Blue Raiders win, but I'm not sure what kind of margin they'll win by in this contest. FIU's offense is much improved of late. They have scored at least 24 points in each of their last four games. I think MTSU's offense will pile up the yardage and points here, and I think FIU will do enough to get this game over the posted total. A two unit play on over 63 points here.
Pick #125 MTSU/FIU over 63 for 2 units
Season Results- 4 Wins 4 Losses (-$540)
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