Week 8 Sun Belt Fearless Predictions

Posted Oct 20, 2012

Week 8 Sun Belt Fearless Predictions, Previews & Analysis

Louisiana-Lafayette (4-1) at North Texas (2-4) Oct. 16, 9:00, ESPN2

Here's The Deal: There's no margin for error in the crowded Sun Belt with three unbeaten teams and six teams with one loss or fewer. North Texas is 1-1 in conference play with a win over Florida Atlantic and a loss to Troy, but there's plenty of time to jump to the head of the class with ULM, WKU and Arkansas State ahead. However, a loss to the Ragin' Cajuns would be devastating to title hopes and would all but end any reasonable shot at going bowling. On the flip side, ULL is rolling with its only loss coming at Oklahoma State with conference blowouts over Troy and FIU. After this starts a nasty four game stretch against Arkansas State, ULM, Florida and Western Kentucky, but with a strong offense and one of the Sun Belt's best defenses, the Ragin' Cajuns are expected to be able to more than hold their own. ULL has won five in a row in the series.

What Will Happen: With ULL starting quarterback Blaine Gautier out with a broken hand, Terrance Broadway will step up and shine against a UNT defense that's solid and will keep the score down. The Ragin' Cajuns don't have much in the secondary, but the Mean Green won't be able to take advantage outside of a huge night coming from Brelan Chancellor.

CFN Prediction: Louisiana-Lafayette 31 … North Texas 20
ATS Consultants Line (Click for more lines and picks) Louisiana-Lafayette -4 O/U: 57
Must Watch Rating (5 – Seven Psychopaths, 1 – Here Comes the Boom): 2

FIU (1-6) at Troy (3-3) Oct. 20, 1:00

What Will Happen: FIU has been one of the biggest disasters this year. One of the favorites for the Sun Belt title is 1-6 and can't seem to get the offense going and can't come up with a clutch stop. It's been a rough campaign, and now the Golden Panthers have to go on the road three times in the next four games. Troy is all but out of the Sun Belt chase, but it has a chance to still be in the hunt for a bowl game with the league's top passing attack, but the pass rush has been awful and there have been too many close losses. FIU isn't stopping anyone's passing attack, and it's not going to be able to slow down quarterback Deon Anthony, who'll do just fine in place of a banged up Corey Robinson.

CFN Prediction: Troy 30 … Florida International 27
ATS Consultants Line (Click for more lines and picks) Troy -7 O/U: 55.5
Florida Atlantic (1-5) at South Alabama (1-5) Oct. 20, 3:30

What Will Happen: It's a race for the bottom. South Alabama gave Arkansas State a good run, but it was an aberration. The offense hasn't shown up on a consistent basis, but neither has Florida Atlantic's O. Last in the Sun Belt in almost every offensive category, the Owls haven't been able to make much of a dent in the five-game losing streak. Something has to give, and this week it'll be the Owls. USA will get just enough offensive balance, with a nice day from the passing attack, to sneak away with an FBS win.

CFN Prediction: South Alabama 20 … Florida Atlantic 17
ATS Consultants Line (Click for more lines and picks) South Alabama -3.5 O/U: 54.5
ULM (4-2) at WKU (5-1) Oct. 20, 4:00, ESPN3

What Will Happen: While this might not be the be-all-end-all for the Sun Belt title – ULL and Arkansas State will still have their say – but it's fair to say that the winner will be in the driver's seat. WKU has had a few battles, but it's been able to use its fantastic defense to win four straight. Can the running game and the aggressive defensive front take care of the high-powered ULM attack? The Warhawks have exploded this season with the Sun Belt's best attack and a run defense that's stopping just about everyone cold. The Hilltoppers have the pass rush and the defense to bother Kolton Browning and slow down the ULM machine, but it'll be the efficient passing game that keeps the chains moving and the Warhawks off the field just enough to get the huge win.

CFN Prediction: Western Kentucky 31 … ULM 28
ATS Consultants Line (Click for more lines and picks) WKU -3.5 O/U: 53.5