The Break Down: Portland St.

Game Information

Time: October 10, 2015 4:00 pm CT

Location: Apogee Stadium – Denton, TX

Line: Portland St -1

TV: Mean Green Webcast

Radio: KHYI 95.3 FM KNTU 88.1 FM KGAF 1580 AM

Weather: Mostly sunny, with a high near 83. North northeast wind 5 to 10 mph.


Team Information

Portland St.

North Texas


North Texas
 
Portland St.
Stat
Category
Stat
16.8
Scoring Offense
26.5
45
Scoring Defense
12.5
163.8
Rushing Offense
205.5
230
Rushing Defense
113
201.2
Passing Offense
111
286.9
Passing Defense
205
365
Total Offense
316.5
516.8
Total Defense
318.2
4.9
Yards Per Play
5
6.9
OPP Yards Per Play
4.4
0.22
Points Per Play
0.42
0.6
OPP Points Per Play
0.17
39%
3rd Conversion
34%
60%
Opp 3rd Conversion
26%
-6
TO Margin
+8
Play Call Percentages
North Texas Offense
Portland St. Defense
Run %
Down
Run %
61%

1st Down
60%

48%

2nd Down
42%

40%

3rd Down
31%


North Texas Offense
Portland St. Defense
Pass %
Down
Pass %
39%

1st Down
40%

52%

2nd Down
58%

60%

3rd Down
69%

North Texas Defense
Portland St. Offense
Run %
Down
Run %
68%

1st Down
82%

52%

2nd Down
73%

50%

3rd Down
55%

North Texas Defense
Portland St. Offense
Pass %
Down
Pass %
32%

1st Down
18%

48%

2nd Down
27%
50%

3rd Down
45%


Yards Per Play
North Texas Offense
Portland St. Defense
Average
Down
Average
5.8
1st Down
4.8
4.0
2nd Down
4.8
4.9
3rd Down
4.3
North Texas Offense
Portland St. Defense
Run
Down
Run
5.4
1st Down
3.9
4.5
2nd Down
4.2
0.9
3rd Down
4.7
North Texas Offense
Portland St. Defense
Pass
Down
Pass
6.4
1st Down
6.2
3.5
2nd Down
5.2
7.6
3rd Down
4.2
North Texas Defense
Portland St. Offense
Average
Down
Average
6.3
1st Down
5.8
7.9
2nd Down
4.9
7.3
3rd Down
5.1
North Texas Defense
Portland St. Offense
Run
Down
Run
4.7
1st Down
5.6
6.7
2nd Down
3.9
5.0
3rd Down
4.1
North Texas Defense
Portland St. Offense
Pass
Down
Pass
9.7
1st Down
7.1
9.3
2nd Down
7.5
9.6
3rd Down
6.3
WR Target
North Texas
Portland St.
Carlos Harris
Paris Penn

25%
28%
Turner Smiley

Thomas Carter

14%
22%
Chris Loving
Trent Riley

10%
17%
Marcus Smith

Darnell Adams

7%
9%
Inside the Matchups
NORTH TEXAS PASS DEFENSE
VS.
PORTLAND ST. PASS OFFENSE
Symbol 2
Edge
Why
If there was a week where you thought North Texas could get its pass defense back in check this would be the week. They are facing a Portland St team that is not a great passing team at all. Portland St hasn’t thrown for over 200 yards on the season, and they haven’t thrown more than 20 passes in a game yet. North Texas should be able to keep the Vikings in check. What worries me is if Portland St is running the ball well enough to establish some play action home run hitters. Those types of plays could be killers for the North Texas defense.
NORTH TEXAS RUN DEFENSE
VS.
PORTLAND ST. RUN OFFENSE
Edge
Symbol 2
Why
Portland St. is running the ball an average of 48 times a game. The Vikings will live and die with their physical pistol rushing attack. Most of Portland St.’s runs come off of some read option play with their QB Alex Kuresa. Kuresa is a very athletic QB and capable of putting up a big number against North Texas. Kuresa had 92 yards rushing against Washington St and is carrying the ball about 16 times a game. Portland St. also has a couple of backs capable of toting the rock. Nate Tago will get the start and he is only averaging 29 yards per game, but he had 69 last week against a tough North Dakota run defense. The other back who will see carries is David Jones. Don’t be surprised to see Portland St get their WR’s involved or their slash athletic backup QB/WR Paris Penn involved. This type of rushing attack will force North Texas to play fundamental football. Everyone has to do their job. Missed assignments have been plaguing the Mean Green defense along with scheme problems. For that reason you have to feel like Portland St. will be able to run the ball.
NORTH TEXAS DEFENSIVE LINE
VS.
PORTLAND ST. OFFENSIVE LINE
Symbol 2
Edge
Why
Right now there is no way you can have confidence in the North Texas defensive line. They have been shredded in back to back weeks. Portland St is big on the OL, but they aren’t Southern Miss or Iowa. I don’t feel confident in North Texas being able to consistently win battles, but the Mean Green should be able to dominate on passing downs. Portland St has given up 10 sacks on only 65 pass attempts. That would mean the Vikings QBs are being sacked 15% of the time. If Portland St was an FBS team that would rank 127th out of 128. J. Roberts should have big game and the North Texas DL should get 5+ sacks in this game. One note of concern would be Kuresa’s scrambling ability. He could convert some 3rd downs with his feet.
NORTH TEXAS PASS OFFENSE
VS.
PORTLAND ST. PASS DEFENSE
Edge
Symbol 2
Why
Portland St. only gave up 307 passing yards to Washington St which was WSU’s second lowest total of the season. The Vikings also held Western Oregon and Idaho St to under 200 yards passing. Both of those teams were averaging close to 250 yards passing. The Vikings have 8 INTs on the year which is quite an impressive total. That would rank them in the top 15 nationally among FBS schools. Safety Patrick Onwausor and Xavier Coleman lead the way in the Vikings secondary. Onwausor is a big athletic physical safety. The Vikings play a lot of zone defense, so there are voids to be found. I’m just not sold on Andrew McNulty being able to find them. I do think McNulty is going to struggle against Portland St. He will make a few plays, but because of his inconsistencies I can’t trust him. Consider this McNulty has had a bad game after every good game. Well he actually had a good game last week statistically speaking. (And when I say he had a good game I mean he had a good game by Mac standards, not the rest of college football.)He has never had back to back games where his QB rating was over 100 when he started. He had a QB rating over 100 last year against UAB and Southern Miss in back to back games, but he didn’t start at UAB. I do think Marcus Smith and Chris Loving have good days for North Texas. Smith and Loving should be able to sit down in those voids of the Portland St zone and be open.
NORTH TEXAS RUN OFFENSE
VS.
PORTLAND ST. RUN DEFENSE
Symbol 2
Edge
Why
North Texas will be going up against a stingy run defense. Portland St has held all of their opponents in check except for North Dakota. Looking deeper into the numbers it looks like Portland St may not have been facing good running teams to begin with outside of North Dakota. North Dakota had their RB and QB go over 100 yards rushing in the game. Not sure McNulty is going to go over a 100 yards, but J. Wilson should be able to. If North Texas uses their speed advantage and attacks the Vikings on the edges they should be able to hit some big plays. I’m not saying that NT can’t run up the middle either against Portland St, but I think it will be more difficult with Portland St.’s big defensive line.
NORTH TEXAS OFFENSIVE LINE
VS.
PORTLAND ST. DEFENSIVE LINE
Symbol 2
Edge
Why
North Texas is on pace to give up the most sacks since Dan McCarney has been the head coach. They are pretty much what I thought they were at the beginning of the year. Decent run blockers and poor pass blockers. North Texas should be able to win the battle against the Portland St DL. Portland St is big in the middle, but the Vikings do struggle getting off blocks at times. In pass rushing situations Portland St has no one with over 2 sacks and only 4 guys on the team who have registered a sack. Not saying they cant get to McNulty, but they shouldn’t be able to get to him as often as Southern Miss did.
NORTH TEXAS SPECIAL TEAMS
VS.
PORTLAND ST. SPECIAL TEAMS
Edge
Symbol 2
Why
Eric Keena continues to air beautiful punts. Keena has done a masterful job, now only if the UNT coverage teams could do better. Darvin Kidsy is only averaging 4.8 yards per return. That is not what we were expecting to see this year. For Portland St the Vikings have a dynamic kick returner in Kahlil Dawson. Dawson has a 94 yard TD return the year. The Vikings kicker Jonathan Gonzales has also been solid this year going 5 for 5 and nailing a 50 yarder against Idaho St.
Player Ratings
North Texas
Portland St.
Player/Overall Rating
Position
Player/Overall Rating
Andrew McNulty - 69
QB vs QB
Alex Kuresa - 71
Jeffery Wilison - 78
RB vs RB
Nate Tago - 68
Carlos Harris - 85
WR vs CB
Xavier Coleman - 67
Marcus Smith - 75
TE vs MLB
Jeremy Lutali - 76
Chris Davis - 75
CB vs WR
Paris Penn - 67
Kishawn McClain - 77
FS vs FS
Patrick Onwausor - 73

GAME PLAN FOR VICTORY 

How Portland St will Win

Portland St. will win if they are able to establish their running game. It will allow the Vikings to control the game. They will be able to control the time of possession and it will allow them to hit a few big plays in the passing game with play action. The Vikings would be able to wear down the North Texas DL. Portland St. needs to load up on the NT run game and force McNulty to beat them with his arm. If they force McNulty to throw into tight windows he is liable to make mistakes.

How North Texas will Win

North Texas will win if they are able to get J.Wilson going and continue to feed him all day long. North Texas will also need McNulty to be efficient. The feeling is that North Texas will lean on the run game heavily, but if Portland St loads up on the run then NT will need McNulty to make plays with his arm.  On defense North Texas has to get Portland St in 3rd down passing situations forcing the Vikings OL to pass block. If they do that NT should be able to get Portland St off the field.