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How and what to watch for UAB vs. Marshall in Conference USA Championship Game

The UAB will try to hand No. 21-ranked Marshall back-to-back losses when they face off in the C-USA championship.

UAB Blazers offensive lineman Will Rykard during the game between UAB Blazers and Western Kentucky Hilltoppers on October 17, 2020 at Legion Field in Birmingham, Alabama. Photo by Michael Wade/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

In the first of many conference championship games this weekend, the UAB Blazers will take on the No. 21-ranked Marshall Thundering Herd for the C-USA crown Friday at 7:00 p.m. ET in Huntington, WV.

UAB (5-3) defeated the Rice Owls last week 21-16 after not playing football in over a month. Blazers quarterback Tyler Johnston III completed 9-of-18 passes for 217 yards, two touchdowns and zero interceptions. He was also the team’s leading rusher with 41 yards on seven carries. As a team, UAB ran for 137 yards and a touchdown, but they will need more production against the best team in Conference USA.

Defensively, the Blazers did an excellent job of making the Owls’ running game obsolete as they only had 66 rushing yards. UAB also forced one of Rice’s quarterbacks into an interception, which they will need to do against Marshall freshman signal-caller Grant Wells.

The Thundering Herd (7-1) are coming off their first loss this season, coincidentally to Rice a couple of weeks ago. In that game, Marshall did not play well on offense as Wells had 165 passing yards, zero touchdowns, and five interceptions for a season high in picked off passes.

On the ground, Brandon Knox was held under 100 rushing yards and without a touchdown for the second game in a row. The power back had 76 yards on 20 carries. He’ll be trying to eclipse the century against a UAB defense that is only giving up 3.8 yards per carry to opposing running backs.

Game Time/TV Channel/Streaming

You can watch UAB vs. Marshall on Friday, December 18th at 7:00 p.m. ET on CBS Sports Network, or you can stream it via CBS Sports app with a cable or streaming service login.

Point Spread, Totals, Odds, Trends

Point spread: UAB vs. Marshall -4.5
Point Total: 42.5
Money line: UAB +185, Marshall -230

  • This season, the Blazers have not been great against the spread with a record of 1-4 in their last five games.
  • However, when it comes to the moneyline, UAB has been a great selection with a record of 4-2 in their last six games.
  • Meanwhile, Marshall has made folks a lot of money this season against the spread with a record of 5-2 in its last seven games.
  • The point total went over in four of the Thundering Herd’s last five games.

Betting splits

UAB: (32% of handle, 14% percent of bets)
Marshall: (68% of handle, 86% percent of bets)

The Best Bet

After getting shutout a couple of weeks ago for their first loss, the Herd will be looking to send a message in the C-USA title game against UAB. Both teams defenses are really good as they don’t give a lot on the ground. But when I look at quarterback and running back, Marshall has the better players, who should bounce back with better performances we’ve seen this season.

Pick: Marshall (-4.5)

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