Troy vs. Ohio prediction and Dollar General Bowl preview. Projecting who wins between the Bobcats and Trojans in Alabama.
Troy vs. Ohio Dollar General Bowl Preview
When: Friday, Dec. 23 – 8 p.m. ET
Where: Ladd-Peebles Stadium, Mobile, Ala.
TV Broadcast: ESPN
Troy used a seven-game winning streak immiedately following a six-point loss to Playoff-qualifier Clemson to earn its and the Sun Belt’s first-ever AP Top 25 ranking. Then it promptly lost by 32 points to Arkansas State. The Trojans still finished 9-3, despite losing the regular-season finale to Georgia Southern, on the back of the conference’s top offense.
That makes for an intriguing matchup against defensive-minded Ohio. The Bobcats had Western Michigan on the ropes in the MAC title game and nearly ruined the Broncos’ Cotton Bowl pursuit before falling, 29-23. Tarell Basham is a force on the defensive line and could give Troy fits.
What To Know About Troy
The Trojans’ 438.6 yards per game led the Sun Belt, as did running back Jordan Chunn’s 42 plays of at least 10 yards from scrimmage. Chunn was one of two backs in the conference to average 100 yards rushing per game, and his 13 touchdowns led the Sun Belt. He and quarterback Brandon Silvers benefited from an offensive line that allowed only seven sacks, the fewest in the nation.
What To Know About Ohio
Basham will do his best to break through that line. He led the MAC with 10.5 sacks and his 14.5 tackles for loss ranked third. That helped Ohio allow the fewest yards per play at 5.18, and it certainly will provide a tough challenge to a Troy offense that’s consistently dangerous.
The Bobcats’ offense leaves plenty to be desired, but Greg Windham is a solid quarterback who also can move out of the pocket and pick up yardage if necessary.
Offense: Troy – Chunn will be the best offensive player on the field.
Defense: Ohio – Troy is no slouch defensively, but Basham gives the Bobcats the edge here.
Special Teams: Troy – Jabir Frye led the Sun Belt in average yards per kickoff return and brought back one for a touchdown.
Coaching: Even – Youth vs. Experience. Troy’s Neal Brown is only 36 years old and guided a five-win improvement from last season. Frank Solich has coached in plenty of big games during a career that includes a stop at Nebraska.
Intangibles: Even – Troy played Clemson tough, and Ohio nearly knocked off Tennessee in Knoxville. Neither team will be intimidated.
Matchup To Watch
Chunn vs. Basham
Basham will try to penetrate the backfield, and that could slow Chunn’s production. But if Troy’s line holds up as it has all season, Chunn could be in for a big day.
Spread: No line as of post
Over/Under: No line as post
Troy vs. Ohio Prediction
Chunn breaks free for 135 yards and two touchdowns and Troy stands tall on defense as well to pick up the victory.
Troy vs. Ohio Final Score Prediction: Troy 38, Ohio 20
Campus Insiders Staff Picks
Brian Stultz: Ohio
Jeff Bartl: Troy
Rich Cirminiello: Ohio
Robert Judin: Ohio
Pete Fiutak: Troy