Eastern Michigan vs. Charlotte prediction and game preview. Projecting who wins the game between the Eagles and 49ers.
Eastern Michigan vs. Charlotte Game Preview
When: Saturday, September 17 – 6:00 p.m. ET
Where: McColl-Richardson Field
TV Broadcast: N/A
The Eagles had an easy time in their season opener, coasting to a 61-14 win over Mississippi Valley State. However, they ran into a salty Missouri squad last week and were torched by Drew Lock, who threw five touchdown passes in a 61-21 Tigers win. Meanwhile, the 49ers were completely overmatched by Lamar Jackson and Louisville in their season opener, as the 56-point setback was the team’s worst since its school-record 73-14 loss to Middle Tennessee last year. However, Brad Lambert’s squad bounced back last week behind Kevin Olsen’s three touchdown passes, as the 49ers beat Elon 47-14. This will be the first meeting between the schools.
What To Know About Eastern Michigan
Shaq Vann came into the season as the Eagles’ star offensive player, but he was limited to just one carry for 10 yards against Mizzou because he injured his shoulder early in the first quarter and did not return. Ian Eriksen took over and rushed 23 times for 90 yards and a touchdown. It was acknowledged on Monday that Vann will miss the Charlotte game, and his return is unknown. Head coach Chris Creighton admitted that it could be for the rest of the season, which is a brutal blow for a program desperately trying to turn things around. Defensively, Creighton’s squad allowed Mizzou quarterback Drew Lock to complete 24 of 37 pass attempts for 450 yards, which was only 30 yards shy of the school record. The Tigers amassed 647 yards of total offense in the win.
What to Know About Charlotte
The 49ers were able to regain some confidence against Elon, as Olsen played very well in his second start for the team. The former Miami signal-caller was 19 of 25 through the air for 155 yards before being replaced in the fourth quarter. Robert Washington ran for two scores and Austin Duke had 103 receiving yards and a touchdown. Defensively, the 49ers are led by senior nose tackle Larry Ogunjobi, who was a second-team all-Conference USA performer last season. Ogunjobi’s presence helps free up the team’s ends and linebackers.
Offense: Even. EMU’s first seven drives against Mizzou resulted in five punts, an interception and a 1-yard touchdown run. Junior quarterback Todd Porter has started both games for the Eagles in place of redshirt junior Brogan Roback, who rejoins the team this week after serving a two-game suspension for an undisclosed violation of team rules. There is no word on who will start against the 49ers.
Defense: Even. Both teams have suffered a blowout loss. EMU has been bolstered by the retuen of end Pat O’Connor, who is healthy after missing last season due to a shoulder injury.
Special Teams: Charlotte. The 49ers have a significant advantage through two games in the special teams efficiency rankings.
Coaching: Even. Both head coaches have significant work to do at their respective programs.
Intangibles: Eastern Michigan. Wins have been hard to come by for the Eagles, but they know they should defeat a program that has not been in existence for very long.
Matchup To Watch
Eriksen vs. Charlotte defensive front
With Vann sidelined for perhaps the rest of the season, the Eagles will be looking for Eriksen to assume the lead role. He had a little success last week against Mizzou one week after he had 12 carries for 97 yards and two touchdowns against Mississippi Valley State. Playing the 49ers could provide Eriksen with an opportunity to gain even more confidence heading into the MAC season. He runs hard and is a physical back, so Creighton will get a glimpse of the run game’s future a little bit earlier than expected.
Eastern Michigan vs. Charlotte Betting Odds
Spread: Eastern Michigan -3
Eastern Michigan vs. Charlotte Prediction
The loss of Vann is a big blow to a team that has been a lower-tier MAC team for awhile. Eriksen could step up, but it just seems that EMU cannot catch a break. Meanwhile, Olsen has a chance to build off of his Elon performance, and EMU provides the perfect opportunity.
Eastern Michigan vs. Charlotte Score Prediction: Charlotte 37, Eastern Michigan 33