North Texas vs

Boise St.

at Frisco TX
Sat, Dec 17
6:15 PM Pacific
Rotation: 217
Odds: Boise St. -10.5, Total: 59.5

Game Analysis

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Strong Opinion – Over (60) – Boise State (-10.5)  40   North Texas  27

A compensated points model would project 59.0 points in this game and my math model projects 60.2 total points before adjustments to the model are made for current personnel. The total appears to be based on the play of these teams over the course of the season, but Boise State’s offense is better than their season numbers and North Texas is likely to throw the ball more than they normally do in this game, which should also increase scoring.

Boise State struggled to move the ball early in the season with Hank Bachmeier at quarterback, as he averaged just 4.6 yards per pass play in 4 games (against teams that would allow 7.5 yppp to an average quarterback. After scoring just 10 points in an upset loss to UTEP a change was made at quarterback and the offensive coordinator was changed. Those changes have produced good results, as quarterback Taylen Green not only improved the pass game (he’s been 0.6 yppp better than average) but he’s also added a running element to the offense with his 501 yards on 61 runs. In Green’s 9 starts the Broncos’ offense has been 0.5 yards per play better than average (6.5 yppl against teams that would allow 6.0 yppl), which is significantly better than their -0.1 yppl rating for all games (that’s how much the -1.7 yppl rating of their first 4 games dragged down their season average).

The North Texas defense has allowed an average of 31.5 points on 463 yards per game at 6.1 yppl while facing teams that would average 5.6 yppl against an average defensive team. That’s 0.3 yppl worse than the average defense that Green faced in his 9 starts and Boise State should have a couple of possessions more than usual given the fast pace the North Texas runs their offense at (they allow 75.4 plays per game, excluding kneel downs and spikes). North Texas faced 7 average or better offensive teams this season (SMU, Memphis, Louisiana Tech with McNeil at QB, UTSA twice, Western Kentucky, and UAB) and the Mean Green gave up 40 points or more in 4 of those games and an average of 36 points. Boise State’s offense rates the same as the average of those teams and the Broncos have a good chance of getting to 40 points in this game with the calm weather conditions.

North Texas got to the CUSA Championship game and this bowl game because of their offense, which has averaged 33.9 points and has been 0.5 yppl better than average despite many games in which they ran the ball a lot rather than needing Austin Aune’s passing, which is the strength of the offense (8.2 yppp against teams that would allow 7.1 yppp to an average QB). North Texas ran the ball 54% of the time because they faced a lot of teams that were terrible defending the run and didn’t need to throw the ball to beat those teams. However, in the 7 games that they didn’t win by 17 points or more (6 losses and a close game against Rice), the Eagles ran the ball just 46% of the time and I project just 45% run plays in this game against a Boise defense that is good defending the run (0.6 yprp better than average) and just average against the pass (their 5.4 yppp allowed was against quarterbacks that would combine to average just 5.4 yppp against an average FBS defense). Throwing the ball 54% of the time instead of running the ball 54% of the time makes the North Texas offense 0.21 yppp better, which equates to 1.4 points.

Boise only faced 3 better than average quarterbacks the entire season and the Broncos gave up an average of 8.3 yppp to Oregon State’s Chance Nolan, BYU’s Jaren Hall, and Fresno’s Jake Haener. I project just 4.4 yprp for North Texas but for Aune to average 7.6 yppp. Overall, the math projects 385 yards at 6.2 yppl for the Mean Green in this game, which equates to 27 points even with Aune more likely to throw more than 1 interception than he is to throw 1 or fewer picks (1.35 projected).

It’s going to be cold on Saturday night in Frisco Texas (38 degrees) but it will be calm with no precipitation – and no wind will allow both teams to throw the ball accurately (cold temperatures actually lead to relatively higher scoring than warm weather games with all else being equal). My math model liked the over before adjusting 2.2 points upwards based on the projected weather.

The Over is a Strong Opinion at 61 points or less.

  • Team Stats
  • Game Log
  • North Texas
  • Boise St.


  • Run Plays 36.4 37.5
  • Run Yards 210.6 204.2
  • YPRP 5.8 5.4


  • Pass Comp 17.2 22.8
  • Pass Att 30.4 35.8
  • Comp % 56.5% 63.7%
  • Pass Yards 262.4 272.2
  • Sacks 1.2 2.1
  • Sack Yards 6.5 13.0
  • Sack % 3.6% 5.5%
  • Pass Plays 31.5 37.9
  • Net Pass Yards 255.8 259.2
  • YPPP 8.1 6.8


  • Total Plays 67.9 75.4
  • Total Yards 466.5 463.4
  • YPPL 6.9 6.1


  • Int 1.1 0.6
  • Int % 3.6% 1.7%
  • Fumbles 0.5 0.5
  • Turnovers 1.5 1.2
  • Points 33.9 31.5
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