Southern Miss vs. Old Dominion prediction and game preview. Projecting who wins between the Golden Eagles and Monarchs on Saturday in Norfolk, VA.
Southern Miss vs. Old Dominion Game Preview
When: Saturday, Nov. 12 – 3:30 p.m. ET
Where: S.B. Ballard Stadium, Norfolk, VA
TV Broadcast: N/A
The Golden Eagles (5-4, 3-2 Conference USA) suffered a surprising 38-27 home setback to Charlotte last week, as Hasaan Klugh ran for a touchdown and capped a 21-point second quarter with an 18-yard pass to T.L. Ford II. Charlotte was up by as many as 24 points over a Southern Miss team that saw Nick Mullens go 19 of 25 through the air for 249 yards and two touchdowns but was picked off twice.
Meanwhile, the Monarchs (6-3, 4-1) took care of business over Marshall at home last Saturday, 38-14. David Washington threw for three touchdowns and had 199 passing yards, while Ray Lawry ran for 209 yards and a score. Old Dominion outgained Marshall 461-214 and held Thundering Herd quarterback Chase Litton to just 87 passing yards and a touchdown.
When these teams met last year in Hattiesburg, Jalen Richard ran for 161 yards and four touchdowns, Mullens passed for two scores and ran for another, and the Golden Eagles rallied for a 56-31 win. Mullens was 21 of 37 for 302 yards, and the Golden Eagles had 612 yards to 338 for the Monarchs.
What To Know About Southern Miss
The Golden Eagles have had an up-and-down year in Jay Hopson’s first season as head coach. The season opener saw them rally to beat Kentucky on the road, but this is the same team that was also blown out by UTSA and had the loss to Charlotte last week. The offense has shined, though, with Mullens, wide receiver Allenzae Staggers and running back Ito Smith. But Mullens has two games with multiple picks, and two of those games ended up being losses. The Golden Eagles can hang with some Power Five teams because they have an abundance of offensive playmakers, but defensive coordinator David Duggan needs to see more consistency from his unit.
What to Know About Old Dominion
One week after the Monarchs received a strong game from Washington and Lawry in a 31-21 road victory over UTEP, Bobby Wilder’s squad won its fifth game in its last six with the victory last Saturday. Washington is playing like a senior, throwing 19 touchdowns to just three interceptions, while Lawry has rushed for 340 yards and three touchdowns on 44 carries the last two games. It’s a very balanced offense, though the defense is susceptible to the pass, which isn’t a good thing with Mullens and Co. coming to town.
Offense: Southern Miss. This is a very balanced Old Dominion offense, but Southern Miss has the more explosive collection of offensive playmakers.
Defense: Southern Miss. The Golden Eagles are giving up 335.4 yards per game, while the Monarchs are allowing opponents to rack up 385.6 yards per contest.
Special Teams: Old Dominion. Overall, Wilder has been pleased with the Monarchs’ improved special teams depth this fall, which has helped their punt and kickoff return units.
Coaching: Even. Hopson was successful at Alcorn State and should be a good long term fit in Hattiesburg, while Wilder has had just one losing season at ODU.
Intangibles: Old Dominion. The Monarchs are hot, and this is a home game against a team that has experienced some tough losses.
Matchup To Watch
Smith vs. Old Dominion defensive front
Smith has found the end zone on the ground in every game this season but one, and in that contest he caught a touchdown pass. ODU needs to be aware of where he is on every Southern Miss offensive play. In last year’s contest, the Golden Eagles’ Richard ran for 161 yards and four touchdowns. ODU is No. 55 in rush defense this year at 156.7 yards per game, so it’s been a solid unit. But Smith has five games of at least 100 yards, none below 64 and has averaged at least 4.0 yards per carry in every contest this fall.
Spread: No line (as of post)
Over/Under: No Line (as of post)
Southern Miss vs. Old Dominion Prediction
The Monarchs have taken care of business against the teams that they should beat this season. This one’s at home, but the Golden Eagles’ experience against a tougher slate will pay off. Mullens, Staggers and Smith will be too much for an ODU defense that will give up a few big plays in the second half. Southern Miss gets a much-needed victory after dropping three out of its last four.
Southern Miss vs. Old Dominion Score Prediction: Southern Miss 34, Old Dominion 27