College Football Week 8, 2021: Saturday notes and observations

Tuesday notes and observations (discussion of future non-conference schedules, including a couple of matchups not “officially” released yet)

Wednesday notes and observations (lots of statistical comparisons between WCU and The Citadel, along with a look at FCS in general from a stats perspective)

Thursday notes and observations (roster review, broadcast information, etc.)

The Post and Courier game preview

This is mostly just a quick post on gameday to list the lines…

Also, there is this. From The Citadel’s game notes:

On this date… [October 23]

In 1976, The Citadel went on the road and scored the first 26 points on the way to a 26-7 road victory over Air Force. The Bulldogs took advantage of a short field to take the lead on a three-yard touchdown run from Andrew Johnson. Paul Tanguay kicked field goals of 47 and 37 yards around a six-yard touchdown pass from Mary Crosby to Al Major. Ralph Ferguson put the game away in the fourth quarter with a 31-yard interception return for a touchdown.

I actually wrote about this game several years ago. I’ve always felt it was a bit underrated as a notable victory by the Bulldogs. Here is a fairly extensive review of the contest:

The Citadel 26, Air Force 7

By the way, if you’re into old games (and this one came with the AFA coach’s show highlight package, which was terrific), I highly recommend checking out The Citadel Football Association’s list of available DVDs:

Link

Per one source that deals in such matters, The Citadel is a 10-point favorite over Western Carolina. The over/under is 66½.

That line is about what it “should” be, according to my metrics. As for the over/under, that’s a lot of points — but my numbers indicate the potential for an even higher-scoring contest.

Other SoCon lines (VMI is off this week):

  • Chattanooga is a 3-point favorite at Samford (over/under of 64)
  • ETSU is a 1½-point favorite at Furman (over/under of 45)
  • Mercer is a 7-point favorite over Wofford (over/under of 45½)

Those three lines accurately reflect the schools’ respective power ratings (well, at least my power ratings).

I am experimenting with a totals calculator, beginning this week, and it suggests that ETSU-Furman might be lower-scoring than that over/under number. We shall see. I am not overly confident in my projections.

Other lines/totals in FCS of some interest:

  • Dayton is a 1½-point favorite at Valparaiso; the Flyers should be more heavily favored
  • James Madison is a 14-point favorite at Delaware; the power ratings suggest the future Sun Belt program should be an 18-to-20 point favorite
  • Kennesaw State is a 1-point favorite at Campbell; my numbers really like the Owls in that matchup

That is about it this week. The actual lines dovetailed rather well with the power ratings, all things considered.

Some over/unders that were flagged on my calculator:

  • LIU-Central Connecticut State (51½); Georgetown-Bucknell (45½); North Carolina Central-Morgan State (37½) — the system suggested the over is definitely in play for those three games
  • Northern Iowa-South Dakota State (49½); James Madison-Delaware (48½); Missouri State-North Dakota State (48½); Rhode Island-Villanova (50½); Southeastern Louisiana-Northwestern State (73½); Weber State-Eastern Washington (63½); Prairie View A&M-Southern (53½) — all of those contests are under plays

Again, this is a first-week experiment that I expect to go very badly. As always, this exercise is for recreational purposes only; I’m not putting any money on any of these games.

Okay, it’s time for football…