The Charlotte 49ers (-11.5) are heading southwest to face the UTEP Miners at Sun Bowl. Fans can catch the action live on ESPN+ and this conference matchup kicks off at 3:00 p.m. ET. These two CUSA foes did not get a chance to face each other in 2018.
Betting Preview: UTEP Miners vs. Charlotte 49ers
UTEP is playing the role of underdog and is currently getting 11.5 points in this Saturday CUSA game. The 49ers are also receiving -470 moneyline odds while the Miners are +340. Vegas has determined the over/under (O/U) to be 57.5 points, and if one side catches a lucky break early, it would likely generate a nice betting scenario in-game.
The 49ers have gained 0.5 units so far and are 4-5 against the spread (ATS). The team has posted an O/U record of 7-2.
The Miners have lost 2.1 units this season. The team is 2-5-1 ATS and owns an even O/U record of 4-4.
The 49ers are 4-5 straight up (SU), including 2-3 SU against CUSA opponents. The Miners are 1-7 SU overall and 0-5 SU in conference play.
Charlotte enters this contest on a zero-game losing streak while UTEP has won each of its last zero. The Niners are coming off a resounding 34-20 victory over Middle Tennessee last week. Chris Reynolds completed 14 passes for 192 yards and one touchdown. Aaron McAllister (104 rushing yards on 24 attempts, two TDs) and the signal-caller Reynolds (103 yards on 16 carries, one TD) mounted the running attack. Cameron Dollar (three receptions, 80 yards) and Victor Tucker (three catches, 50 yards) handled the receiving duties in the win.
UTEP just lost a one-sided 52-26 game to North Texas. The team’s defensive unit allowed the Mean Green to pass for 332 yards and seven touchdowns while rushing for 144 yards. Michael Lawrence had a good showing in the win for North Texas, recording 87 yards and a score on six catches. For UTEP, Kai Locksley completed 17-of-29 passes for 119 yards. Treyvon Hughes (97 yards on 17 rush attempts, three TDs) and the signal-caller Locksley (27 yards on 14 carries) mounted the running attack while Justin Garrett (11 receptions, 77 yards) and Alan Busey (two catches, 20 yards) led the pass-catching attack in the loss.
Each of these squads has a remarkably similar (61-39) run-pass ratio on the season. Having said that, the 49ers have produced 211 rush yards per game (including 171.2 per game against Conference USA opponents) and have 20 scores on the ground this year. The Miners haven’t been quite as successful, as they’re putting up 136.3 rushing yards per game (122.2 in conference) and have 14 total rush TDs.
If 2019 results can translate to this game, then it seems like the 49ers ought to hold an edge in the trenches. Their offensive line has given up just 38 sacks while the D-line logged 19 sacks. The Miners, on the other hand, have allowed 42 sacks and their defense has forced only 20 sacks.
The Niners offensive scheme has averaged 207.2 yards through the air overall (225 per game against conference opposition) and has 18 passing scores so far. The Miners have put up 160.5 pass yards per contest (169 against CUSA competition) and have four total pass TDs.
Defensively, Charlotte appears to have the upper hand when it comes to limiting the pass. The team has allowed opponents to run for an average of 201.2 yards and throw for 209.3 yards per game. The UTEP D has allowed 251 yards per game to opposing passers and 177.3 yards per game on the ground. The Niners are giving up an adjusted net yards per pass attempt (ANY/A) of 7.98 to opposing QBs, while the Miners have allowed a staggering 9.09 ANY/A.
Passing-wise, Reynolds has put up 1,344 yards on the year, and has connected on 60 percent of his 167 attempts with 13 passing scores and six interceptions. He has a 7.07 adjusted net yards per pass attempt overall, although that number sits at 11.09 over the last two outings.
We expect the Charlotte offense to mix it up in this one. As a group, Chris Reynolds, Benny LeMay and Victor Tucker have combined for 582 yards from scrimmage and six touchdowns over the last two outings.
Kai Locksley has connected on 39-of-77 passes for 429 yards, one TD and two INTs for UTEP. His ANY/A sits at a very poor 2.62 for the season and 4.60 over his past two outings.
Treyvon Hughes (459 rushing yards, nine rush TDs on the year), Justin Garrett (153 receiving yards) and Jacob Cowing (125 receiving yards, one receiving TD) have combined to account for 380 total yards and five touchdowns over the past couple of games.
Charlotte 49ers vs. UTEP Miners Betting Prediction
SU Winner: Charlotte, ATS Winner: Charlotte, O/U: Over
- The Charlotte defense has 27 sacks on the year while UTEP has just eight.
- The UTEP offense has lost five fumbles in 2019 while Charlotte has lost two.
- The 49ers offense has tallied five pass plays of 40 or more yards, while the Miners have accounted for three such plays.
- The Charlotte defense has allowed 10 pass plays of 40 yards or more, while UTEP has given up seven such plays.
- The Charlotte offense has created 18 rushing plays of 20 or more yards, while UTEP has created 12 such runs.
- The 49ers defense has allowed 15 rushing plays of 20+ yards, while the Miners have given up 10 such runs.
- Charlotte has averaged 4.6 yards per rush attempt over its last three contests and 5.2 over its last two.
- UTEP has averaged 3.4 yards per carry over its last three outings and 3.7 over its past two.