The Breakdown: UNLV vs. UNT

North Texas Mean Green vs. UNLV Rebels

Date: January 1, 2014

Time: 11:00 pm CT

Location: Dallas, TX

Line: UNT –6.5

TV: ESPU

Weather: Kickoff – 50° Winds S 10mph 4th Quarter – 62° Winds SSW 14mph


Statistical Break Down

(NCAA Rank)

North Texas

UNLV

8-4

W-L

7-5

31.5 (50)

POINTS FOR

31.3 (53)

18.1 (9)

POINTS AGAINST

31.5 (93)

411.6 (66)

TOTAL OFF

423.8 (52)

355.5 (27)

TOTAL DEF

436.3 (100)

227.6 (68)

PASSING

242.4 (51)

184 (47)

RUSHING

181.4 (52)

230.4 (64)

PASSING (OPP)

214.5 (32)

125.1 (18)

RUSHING (OPP)

157 (59)

21.5 (61)

FIRST DOWNS

24 (30)

18 (14)

FIRST DOWNS (OPP)

22 (86)

46% (26)

THIRD DOWN CONV. %

40% (62)

36% (32)

THIRD DOWN CONV. %(DEF)

47% (114)

71

TEAM TFL

43

34

TEAM SACKS

19

85%

RED ZONE OFF

77%

61%

RED ZONE DEF

82%

23.94 (19)

KICK RETURNS

22.77 (40)

20.95 (57)

KICK RETURN(OPP)

22.02 (82)

14.7 (6)

PUNT RETURNS

3.64 (114)

6.74 (41)

PUNT RETURNS(OPP)

9.81 (90)

Derek Thompson – 220.0

LEADING PASSER (YPG)

Caleb Herring- 210.0

Brandin Byrd – 85.2

LEADING RUSHER (YPG)

Tim Cornett– 104.2

Brelan Chancellor – 59.8

LEADING RECIEVER (YPG)

Devante Davis– 99.5

Brelan Chancellor – 148.6

LEADING APY

Marcus Sullivan – 122.8

Zach Orr – 9.5

LEADING TACKLER (TPG)

Peni Vea– 8.1

Aaron Bellazin – 7.5

SACK LEADER

Tyler Gaston – 4.5

Aaron Bellazin – 11

Zach Orr – 11

TFL LEADER

Tani Maka – 6.5

Marcus Trice – 8

PASS BR-UP LEADER

Kenneth Penny – 16

Marcus Trice – 5

INT LEADER

Frank Crawford – 4

Zach Orr – 3

FF LEADER

Tajh Hasson – 3

Zach Orr – 4

FR LEADER

Kenneth Penny – 2

CONFERNCE STATS ONLY

North Texas

CUSA

UNLV

MW

6-2

W-L

5-3

32.8 (4)

POINTS FOR

33.8 (6)

14.0 (1)

POINTS AGAINST

30.1 (4)

412.4 (4)

TOTAL OFF

443.8 (8)

289.8 (2)

TOTAL DEF

465.1 (6)

202.5 (8)

PASSING

266.1 (9)

209.9 (4)

RUSHING

177.6 (7)

189.1 (3)

PASSING (OPP)

248.5 (4)

100.6 (1)

RUSHING (OPP)

216.6 (8)

22 (5)

FIRST DOWNS

26 (2)

17 (3)

FIRST DOWNS (OPP)

23 (6)

48% (4)

THIRD DOWN CONV. %

42% (9)

33% (2)

THIRD DOWN CONV. %(DEF)

47% (10)

29 (1)

SACK BY

14 (8)

6 (2)

SACKS AGAINST

16 (7)

86% (5)

RED ZONE OFF

76% (10)

56% (1)

RED ZONE DEF

83% (6)

23.4 (5)

KICK RETURNS

24.6 (2)

11.5 (3)

PUNT RETURNS

2.9 (10)

+5 (4)

TO MARGIN

+6 (2)

32:05 (3)

TIME OF POSSESION

31:13 (7)

Game Notes:

UNLV

 

Projected Starters:

North Texas

UNLV

Derek Thompson, 6-4, 218, Sr.

QB

Caleb Herring (6-3, 200, SR-3L)

Brandin Byrd, 5-10, 223, Sr.

RB

Tim Cornett (6-0, 210, JR-2L)

Brelan Chancellor, 5-9, 186, Sr.

WR/FB

Taylor Barnhill (6-4, 240, JR-2L)

Carlos Harris, 5-8, 172, So.

WR

Devante Davis (6-3, 200, JR-2L)

Darnell Smith, 6-1, 203, Sr.

WR

Marcus Sullivan (5-9, 195, JR-2L)

Drew Miller, 6-1, 258, Sr.

TE

Jake Phillips (6-6, 255, SO-1L)

Antonio Johnson, 6-6, 294, Jr.

LT

Brett Boyko (6-7, 310, JR-2L)

Mason Y’Barbo, 6-2, 307, Jr.

LG

Cameron Jefferson (6-6, 300, JR-2L)

Kaydon Kirby, 6-3, 313, Fr.,

C

Robert Waterman (6-2, 290, JR-2L)

Cyril Lemon, 6-3, 304, Jr.,

RG

Ron Scoggins (6-3, 335, SO-1L)

LaChris Anyiam, 6-4, 296, Sr.

RT

Andrew Oberg (6-7, 280, SO-1L)

Richard Abbe, 6-4, 320, Sr.

DT

Alex Klorman (6-2, 285, SR-3L)

Ryan Boutwell, 6-3, 248, Sr.

DT

Mark Garrick (6-4, 280, SR-1L)

Aarron Bellazin, 6-2, 265, Sr.

DE

Sonny Sanitoa (6-3, 260, SO-1L)

Brandon McCoy, 6-2, 257, Sr

DE

Jordan Sparkman (6-6, 265, JR-2L)

Zach Orr, 6-1, 240, Sr.

MLB

Tani Maka (6-1, 240, SR-3L)

Will Wright, 6-2, 221, Sr.

OLB

Tau Lotulelei (6-1, 220, FR-RS)

Derek Akunne, 6-0, 244, Jr.

OLB

Tim Hasson (6-2, 215, SR-3L)

Kenny Buyers, 5-11, 177, So

CB

Tajh Hasson (6-1, 195, JR-2L)

James Jones, 5-11, 173, Jr.

CB

Kenneth Penny (5-11, 170, JR-2L)

Marcus Trice, 5-8, 193, Sr.

FS

Mike Horsey (6-0, 180, JR-2L)

Lairamie Lee, 5-10, 195, Jr.

SS

Peni Vea (6-1, 200, SO-1L)

Zach Paul, 5-9, 155, So.

K

Nolan Kohorst (6-0, 180, SR-3L)

Blake Macek, 5-9, 186, Fr., RS

P

P Logan Yunker (6-2, 215, SO-TR)

Brelan Chancellor, 5-9, 186, Sr.

KR

Marcus Sullivan (5-9, 195, JR-2L)

Brelan Chancellor, 5-9, 186, Sr.

PR

Keith Whitely (5-9, 185, FR)

What They’re Saying:

ESPN Pick Center:

TEAMRANKINGS – North Texas 30 – UNLV 25

numberFire- North Texas 33 – UNLV 24

SI:

Once UNLV put Herring under center, it racked up points with the best of them, averaging 34.2 over its final nine games. That scoring came in spite of a major weakness. The Rebels rank 102nd in red zone offense, generating points on just 76.9 percent of their red zone chances. North Texas puts the clamps on opposing attacks inside the 20-yard line, allowing foes to score on just 60.6 percent of red zone trips, tops in the nation. The Mean Green faithful also face a short trip down I-35 to the Cotton Bowl, making this a veritable home game for North Texas.

The pick: North Texas 31, UNLV 20

Athlon Sports:

Both programs should be excited to be in this bowl. UNLV coach Bobby Hauck began the year on the hot seat but earned a contract extension with a 7-5 season. After a 9-15 start under Dan McCarney, North Texas nearly won Conference USA’s West Division with an 8-4 record. Both programs are pointed in the right direction, and this game is a reward for a breakout year. Quarterback play will be critical for both teams on Jan. 1. If Herring has success early, UNLV should be able to establish its running game. And the same can be said for North Texas, but Herring was more efficient than Derek Thompson in 2013. The Rebels have an edge in offensive talent with Herring and Cornett, but the Mean Green has the better defense and a home-field advantage. Those two factors should be the difference in this game.

Prediction: North Texas 31, UNLV 24

FanIQ.com:

UNLV has a strong offense, but didn’t play consistent football against quality teams. This isn’t your usual North Texas squad, as Dan McCarney has the Mean Green one win away from its first nine-win season since 2003 and will be playing in a virtual home game in Dallas.

North Texas 28, UNLV 22

AccuScore.com Game Forecast Preview:

North Texas is a solid favorite with a 70% chance to beat UNLV. Brandin Byrd is projected for 101 rushing yards and a 64% chance of having at least 1 rushing TD. In the 30% of simulations where UNLV wins, Nick Sherry averages 1.99 TD passes vs 1.1 interceptions, while in losses he has a ratio of 1.05 TDs to 1.41 interceptions. Tim Cornett averages 116 rushing yards and 1.43 rushing TDs when UNLV wins and 102 yards and 0.81 TDs in losses. North Texas has a 46% chance of forcing more turnovers than they commit. Positive turnover margin helps them win 78% of the time. SPREADS / TOTALS: Current Point Spread is NTEX -6.5 — Over/Under line is 54.5

Sports Network:

Ranked fourth in the nation in takeaways, the Mean Green will have their work cut out for them this time around as they face a passing attack that is both explosive and conservative at the same time. Herring doesn’t make many mistakes in the pocket, but if he does you can expect to see North Texas pounce immediately.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: North Texas 27, UNLV 20

Edraft.com: How the Rebels’ handle Chancellor will be key in this game with their defensive schemes and special teams. Do they kick it away from him and completely rule out the chance of a big return or do they take risks and kick it to him. If you give him just a little bit of open space, he will burn you for the big play.

Game Prediction: North Texas 24 UNLV 17

Rant Sports:

PREDICTION: UNLV 28, North Texas 24

Bleacher Report:

Bowl games can feature some wild plays and take unexpected turns. The Heart of Dallas Bowl will be no different. After a back-and-forth first quarter with plenty of points, both teams settle down for the remainder of the game.

Herring will have a big day passing for UNLV, but in the end, North Texas’ defense makes just enough plays to stay ahead, and the Mean Green run down the clock in the fourth quarter to secure their first bowl win in over a decade.

Score prediction: North Texas 34, UNLV 28


Trend Breakdown:

UNLV Season Trends

First Down Run – 54% Pass – 46%

Second Down Run – 54% Pass – 46%

 

Third Down Run – 35% Pass – 65%

Total Run – 51% Pass – 49%

WR Targets

1st Down

2nd Down

3rd Down

Total
Devante Davis 32% 34% 24%

30%

Marcus Sullivan 17% 14% 24%

19%

Maika Mataele 13% 7% 16%

12%

Anthony Williams 7% 4% 8%

7%

Jake Phillips 7% 6% 8%

7%

Tim Cornett 8% 13% 7%

9%

Taylor Barnhill 10% 8% 3%

7%

Jerry Rice Jr. 1% 6% 3%

3%

Shaquille Murray-Lawrence 2% 2% 4%

3%

Adonis Smith 1% 3% 4%

3%

Aaron Criswell 2% 3% 0%

2%


UNT Season Trends

First Down Run – 66% Pass – 34%

Second Down Run – 53% Pass – 47%

Third Down Run – 39% Pass – 61%

Total Run – 58% Pass – 42%

 

 

 

WR Targets

1st Down

2nd Down

3rd Down

Total
Darnell Smith 25% 30% 22%

26%

Brelan Chancellor 25% 26% 20%

23%

Carlos Harris 20% 22% 21%

21%

Darvin Kidsy 6% 3% 8%

6%

Lynrick Pleasant 3% 2% 2%

2%

Reggie Pegram 2% 2% 5%

3%

Drew Miller 7% 3% 8%

6%

Darius Terrell 1% 1% 1%

1%

Brandin Byrd 7% 3% 6%

5%

Marcus Smith 3% 3% 5%

4%

UNLV Successful Plays:

Successful Plays:

Any play resulting in a touchdown

Any play resulting in a first down

Any pass play 5 yards or greater

Any run play 4 yards or greater

Pass-

Caleb Herring – 170

Devante Davis – 61

Marcus Sullivan – 37

Maika Mataele – 26

Tim Cornett – 15

Run-

Tim Cornett – 113

Caleb Herring – 50

Shaquille Murray-Lawrence – 14

Adonis Smith – 9

 

Matchups:

Pass O

UNLV’s has faced some pretty potent passing attacks this year (Fresno St & San Jose St.). I expect them to be able to handle UNT’s passing game from a coverage aspect, but I don’t think they will get a tremendous amount of pressure on D. Thompson. If UNT is dominating in the run game then the passing game should open up enough for UNT to find some success. If UNT is forced into passing the ball in order to move the stick, well then it could be a long day for the Mean Green.

Run O

This one is pretty simple. I expect UNT to win the battle in trenches. I don’t think UNT will gash UNLV, but I believe in UNT finding a steady 4.5 yard per carry average during the game.

OL

UNT is giving up 1 sack for every 37 pass attempts. I don’t think UNLV is going to touch D. Thompson in this game much. From the ground attack perspective UNT is averaging 4.4 yards per carry while UNLV is giving up 5.2. I think the big uglies are going to win their battle tomorrow.

Pass D

Caleb Herring and the UNLV passing attack is not great, but they have enough weapons to take advantage of the overly aggressive UNT secondary.

Run D

This is where the game will be won. If UNT can limit UNLV’s ground attack they should be able to walk away with a victory. Plus I like the fact that this will be one of the best run defenses UNLV will have faced this year.

DL

UNT’s DL is averaging 1 sack for every 12 pass attempts. They should be able to get some good pressure on Herring when UNLV is passing while clogging the run lanes when UNLV turns to Cornett

Special Teams

I think Brelan Chancellor could be a difference maker against a weak coverage team. UNLV would be wise to kick the ball away from Brelan.

Coaching

How UNT Can Win:

  1. Run it early and often. In UNLV’s 5 losses they gave up an average of 255.5 on the ground. In those games their opponents had a run to pass percentage of 60% run 40% pass. It’s no secret on how UNT needs to attack UNLV.

  2. Have fun! Don’t be up tight. Hopefully the coaching staff won’t be up tight early too. UNT can take advantage of a defense that is susceptible to over pursuit. I for one would like to see a trick play or a reverse on the first offensive series. San Diego St. used a reverse and a reverse pass on their two first plays to strike pay dirt against the Rebels.

  3. Keep Caleb Herring contained to just a passer. Herring is a very athletic smart QB. He has the ability to pick up 3rd down conversions with his feet. UNT needs to keep the UNLV offense in 3rd and long situations where Herring is forced to make a play with his arm.

  4. Don’t let Cornett make UNLV’s offense two dimensional. In UNLV’s 5 losses Cornett was held to 66 yards per game. In their 7 wins 132 yards per game on the ground. If Cornett is able to run the ball effectively it makes UNLV’s offense pretty scary.

  5. Keep Marcus Sullivan and Devante Davis contained. The receiving duo is quite explosive and efficient. Combined they are averaging a successful play on 82% of their touches.

 

Go Mean Green!