Posts Tagged ‘Troy Trojans’

R&L Carriers New Orleans Bowl Picks: Ohio vs. Troy Analysis

December 15th, 2010 by Adam Markowitz (Bankroll Sports Columnist) | Posted in College Football   Comments Off on R&L Carriers New Orleans Bowl Picks: Ohio vs. Troy Analysis

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Down in the Bayou, representatives from the MAC and the Sun Belt are going to square off, as the Ohio Bobcats match up with the Troy Trojans in the New Orleans Bowl. These two teams have both had very up and down seasons, but they come together having just barely squeaked into the second season. Which one of these teams will be able to beat the slender college football odds on this day? Find out as we offer the keys to beating the New Orleans Bowl lines for Saturday night.

Key #1: Boo Jackson has to put up better numbers against an iffy defense… if he plays
If the Trojans had a major problem this year, it was that their defense was incredibly inconsistent. The unit ranked No. 101 against the pass this year at 247.6 yards per game, and they were just a pitiful No. 94 overall at 419.2 yards per game. There weren’t many bowl teams on this schedule this year, as there were only four teams that are going to the second season. The game against the Middle Tennessee State Blue Raiders should probably be thrown out, as it was the first time that QB Dwight Dasher suited up this season. However, in the other three games against bowl teams, Troy allowed 41 points to the Oklahoma State Cowboys, 52 to the Florida International Golden Panthers, and 69 to the South Carolina Gamecocks. Now a senior, QB Boo Jackson is playing in his final game with the Bobcats. He really did nothing but digress for the majority of his career after a stunning sophomore campaign, and his last few games of the regular season were probably his worst. Jackson was intercepted in ten of his 12 games this year, and the fact that he threw for just 133 yards and two picks against the Kent State Golden Flashes in the last game of the season was what kept the Bobcats out of the MAC Championship Game. Jackson had four games this year where he didn’t even get to double digits in completions, and for a man that doesn’t have a stellar running game, nor a solid set of legs himself, only throwing for 1,688 yards just didn’t cut it. He hasn’t thrown for more than 240 yards in a game all season long and will probably need more than that to survive against Troy. The problem that Jackson has right now is that he is fighting bowl eligibility issues. He has undisclosed academic problems right now, and at least as far as this point, he hasn’t made the trek to the Crescent City with the rest of the team. If that’s the case, the man that started the season, QB Phillip Bates, the team’s second leading rusher, is going to be calling the shots.

New Orleans Bowl Odds at Diamond Sportsbook 
Ohio Bobcats +2
Troy Trojans -2
Over/Under 58
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Key #2: Corey Robinson has to be a strong leader, even as just a freshman
QB Corey Robinson has plenty of college football left in his arm, and he has had a great first year at the helm in Troy. He has thrown for 3,339 yards and 24 TDs already, and he has had eight games with at least two TD passes on the year. Robinson really became the only quarterback option for the team over the course of the last month or so of the season, as the rest of the signal callers sort of became obsolete all of a sudden. In that last month of the year, Robinson threw for 300+ yards in three of his five games, giving him a total of five 300+ yard games on the campaign. The key is going to be his completion percentage. In games in which the frosh completed at least 60% of his passes, he is 6-1. In games in which he was under that 60% barrier, the team went just 1-4, and several of those losses were brutal. This is a relatively young Troy team that is direly still looking for a leader. This is the game where Robinson can step up and take charge, setting the tone for the next three years, and if he does, the Trojans will be tough to stop.

Key #3: Ohio needs to keep tabs on Jerrel Jernigan
In his career, WR Jerrel Jernigan has done just about everything that a man can do on a football field. He is just one catch away from setting a career high in receptions this year, and though he probably isn’t having his best season, he is also clearly not playing on a team that is as talented as it was when QB Levi Brown was calling the shots. Jernigan has already accounted for 5,916 yards in his career between rushing, receiving, returning, and passing, and he has been good for 774 receiving yards, 301 punt return yards, 600 kick return yards, 306 rushing yards, and 41 passing yards this year to go with nine TDs. The 2,022 yards is a career high, and left Jernigan with an average of 168.5 yards per game that he accounts for by himself. The Bobcats have a defense which is surrendering just 316.6 yards per game, and this unit really needs to make sure that it keeps tabs on Jernigan at all times to be successful in this one.