Western Kentucky vs. FAU prediction and game preview. Projecting who wins between the Hilltoppers and Owls on Saturday in Boca Raton, FL.
Western Kentucky vs. FAU Game Preview
When: Saturday, Oct. 29 – 3:30 p.m. ET
Where: FAU Football Stadium, Boca Raton, FL
TV Broadcast: N/A
The Hilltoppers (5-3, 3-1 Conference USA) had an easy time last week at home against Old Dominion, as quarterback Mike White threw for 378 yards and four touchdowns in a 59-24 win. Jeff Brohm’s squad recorded points on eight of its first nine possessions to lead 52-14 after two quarters of play. White completed 28-of-32 passes, and Taywan Taylor led the receiving corps by catching 10 passes for 123 yards and three scores.
Meanwhile, the Owls (1-6, 0-3) had last week off, and it could not have come at a better time. The last time Charlie Partridge’s team saw action was at Marshall, which used two Keion Davis touchdowns (including the winning score late in the fourth quarter), to earn a 27-21 win. FAU received 111 yards and a touchdown on the ground from Devin Singletary as well as 109 rushing yards and a score from Greg Howell.
The last time these teams played, Hilltoppers signal-caller Brandon Doughty threw four touchdown passes and added a scoring reception in a 35-19 win at L.T. Smith Stadium. Western Kentucky pulled away in the second half after FAU only trailed 14-13 after two quarters of play.
What To Know About Western Kentucky
The Hilltoppers had a nice response last week to giving up 55 points at Louisiana Tech and 43 to Middle Tennessee. The ‘Toppers gave up only 67 rushing yards to Old Dominion and are now one win away from bowl eligibility for a sixth straight season after their third straight win over the Monarchs. Not only is White lighting up opposing defenses, but Anthony Wales has rushed for 739 yards and 11 touchdowns and is averaging 6.5 yards per carry. He’s also a solid pass-catcher out of the backfield. Quinton Baker has also chipped in to spell Wales, so it’s a rushing attack that complements White and the passing game very well.
What to Know About FAU
The Owls have lost six in a row and are suffering through a very difficult time in their program. Outside of the rushing duo of Howell Jr. (614 yards and nine touchdowns) and Singletary (258 yards and two scores) and the play of defensive end Trey Hendrickson (who should see action on Sundays at the next level), there is not much to be excited about if you’re a fan of the Owls. Making matters worse, starting tackle Bryan Beck has been ruled out for the season with a knee injury, making him the third FAU starter on the O-Line to suffer a season-ending injury. Dillon DeBoer is the only Owls lineman to play in every game this season.
Offense: Western Kentucky. The Hilltoppers are averaging 486.9 yards per game.
Defense: Western Kentucky. Both units are porous. But while the ‘Toppers are struggling mightily defending the run, the Owls are having trouble stopping opponents both on the ground and through the air.
Special Teams: FAU. Western Kentucky kickers Skyler Simcox and Ryan Nuss have combined to miss five field goals already this season, including two kicks under 40 yards.
Coaching: Western Kentucky. Brohm is 25-10 with two bowl wins as he enjoys his third season with WKU.
Intangibles: Western Kentucky. Even with a bye last week, this FAU team is beaten down.
Matchup To Watch
White vs. FAU secondary
The Owls rank No. 90 in passing yards allowed, which is not a good thing for a defense that is preparing to face the No. 9 passing offense in the country. White has a 14-to-2 TD-to-INT ratio over his last four games, and he has passed for 2,476 yards on the season. It figures to be a very long night for the FAU secondary.
Spread: Western Kentucky -16
Western Kentucky vs. FAU Prediction
The Hilltoppers are tied for the C-USA East lead, and they aren’t losing that place this week. The Owls are giving up 35.7 points per contest, and White will find plenty of passing lanes in this one.
Western Kentucky vs. FAU Score Prediction: Western Kentucky 41, FAU 23