With about a month remaining in the regular season, C-USA already has two teams that are bowl eligible – Louisiana Tech with seven wins and UAB with six.
The Owls are one of four teams one win away from eligibility with five wins. After this upcoming weekend, C-USA will have at least one and likely two more bowl-eligible teams. Either FAU or WKU will emerge from Saturday’s contest in Bowling Green, Ky., with a sixth win.
East division front runner Marshall will be a heavy favorite against winless Rice to get its sixth win.
With four games remaining for most C-USA teams, several other teams should have to opportunity to gain bowl eligibility, including FIU (4-4).
With six teams either already bowl eligible or one win away, Conference USA is likely to conclude the season with more bowl eligible teams than tie-ins. Only five teams from C-USA are guaranteed spots in bowl games, making the quest for a bowl berth more of a race to seven wins.
FAU vs WKU Preview
The contest will effectively serve as an elimination game in the quest for the C-USA East title. Both FAU and Western Kentucky suffered their only loss to Marshall, creating a three-way tie for first in the East.
Western Kentucky defensive lineman DeAngelo Malone will be one of the main players to watch on the defense. Malone has 62 total tackles on the season. His nine sacks are tied for fourth in the nation in sacks. Last week Marshall limited Malone to four tackles and zero sacks. FAU’s offensive line, a group that’s been hot and cold this season, will need one of their better efforts.
WKU’s offense is based on the running game led by running back Gaej Walker. Walker leads the team in rushing with 730 yards and six touchdowns. FAU’s defense will need to focus on the run as the Owls give up over 150 yards a game and 11 touchdowns this season.
Week 10 C-USA Game of the Week
ODU at FIU. Not much of interest outside of FAU’s contest at WKU this week. Both ODU and FIU are looking to bounce back after 30 point losses to conference foes. James Morgan and the FIU offense will face off against an ODU defense that has given up over 1,200 total yards in their last three games. An FIU win would put the Panthers one victory away from bowl eligibility entering the Shula Bowl two weekends from now.
FAU Stat Check
3 – Fumble recoveries for Rashad Smith, which is tied for first in the FBS.
4 – Interceptions by Meiko Dotson, ranking him fifth in the nation and second in C-USA.
5 – Sacks for Leighton McCarthy, seventh in C-USA.
+7 – Turnover margin for the Owls best in C-USA.
10 – Total interceptions by the Owls, tied for 10th in the nationally.
32.9 – Points per game averaged by FAU, tied for second in C-USA.
415 – Average yards per game for FAU this season.
577 – Receiving Yards for Harrison Bryant, leading all tight ends in the nation.