No. 19 Louisiana vs. No. 12 Coastal Carolina

No. 19 Louisiana vs. No. 12 Coastal Carolina | 2020 NCAAF Expert Analysis

Written by on December 17, 2020

It’s quite simply the biggest game in Sun Belt Conference history on Saturday afternoon when one-loss and 19th-ranked Louisiana visits unbeaten and No. 12 Coastal Carolina in the conference title game. The Chanticleers could get a New Year’s Six Bowl spot with a victory.

How to Bet Louisiana at Coastal Carolina NCAA Football Odds & TV InfoLast Meeting

These teams played at Louisiana on Oct. 14 and Coastal Carolina won 30-27. Massimo Biscardi put a 40-yard game-winning field goal through the uprights with just 4 seconds remaining to give the Chanticleers the program’s first-ever win over an FBS top 25 nationally-ranked program as Louisiana was ranked No. 21 back then. CCU totaled 414 yards of offense on a balanced attack on 212 yards rushing and 202 yards passing, while UL recorded 413 total yards on 236 yards rushing and 177 yards passing.

Coastal Carolina leads the all-time series 2-1.Why Bet on Louisiana? | 2020 NCAAF Expert Analysis

Louisiana (9-1) last played on Dec. 4 and won at Appalachian State 24-21 – the Mountaineers’ game-tying 30-yard field goal attempt with five seconds remaining sailed wide left. UL earned the program’s first victory over Appalachian State and extended its winning streak to six games. The Ragin’ Cajuns have now posted a 9-1 record for the first time in program history.

Running back Trey Ragas was pivotal in the win as his two third-quarter touchdowns gave Louisiana a lead it did not relinquish. Ragas finished with 43 rushing yards on 12 carries and his two scores, while also hauling in an eight-yard touchdown reception. Levi Lewis passed for 101 yards and a score and rushed for 77 yards. It was Lewis’ 17th straight game throwing for a touchdown.

Ragas now has 37 career rushing TDs and he and Clemson star and Travis Etienne are the only two running backs in college football who have tallied eight or more rushing touchdowns in four consecutive seasons.

Louisiana’s defense turned three App State turnovers into 14 points. It marked the ninth time this season the defense has recorded two or more turnovers in a game, improving it to 9-0 in those games. Louisiana improved to 6-0 on the road this season, marking its second-straight season with a perfect record away from home in the regular season.

The Ragin’ Cajuns will be playing in the month of December for just the 22nd time in program history, owning a 10-11 record in those contests. UL is looking for team’s first Sun Belt Conference Championship since the 2005 season and back-to-back double-digit win seasons for the first time in program history.

Why Bet on Coastal Carolina? | 2020 NCAAF Expert Analysis

Coastal Carolina took care of one major piece of business earlier this week in signing in-demand head coach Jamey Chadwell to a seven-year extension. Chadwell, who was considered a candidate for open Power 5 coaching jobs, has led the Chanticleers to an 11-0 record and a program-best No. 12 ranking from the College Football Playoff committee.

The school did not release financial details but said the potential annual value, with all incentives met, would be the highest in the Sun Belt. Chadwell made $375,000 this season as he led the Chanticleers to wins over two Top 25 opponents, including then-No. 13 BYU two weeks ago.

CCU was nearly caught in a trap game last Saturday, escaping with a 42-38 win at Troy. Coastal, who led for most of the contest, saw a six-yard touchdown pass from Jacob Free to Tray Eafford with 1:20 to go in the game put the Trojans on top by three at 38-35, only to answer back with a five-play, 75-yard drive in just 45 seconds to take the 42-38 road win.

The game-winning score was a 23-yard pass across the middle from Grayson McCall to Jaivon Heiligh that saw the junior wideout race into the end zone to give the Chants the lead with only 35 seconds remaining.

The Chants threw for a season-high 338 yards to go along with 176 rushing yards. The 514 yards were the third time this season that the CCU offense went over 500 total yards offense for the game. McCall had a career game, as he was 24-of-29 for 338 passing yards, three touchdowns, and one interception. He also rushed 10 times for 40 yards and a score. Heiligh nearly broke his own school record of 12 receptions with 11 catches for a career-high 138 yards and two scores.

Coastal Carolina became the only team in Sun Belt Conference history to finish the regular season at 11-0 overall. Prior to this season, Coastal had not won more than two conference games in any season since joining the Sun Belt in 2017 and just six total conference games in the program’s history in the Sun Belt.

With a win over Louisiana, the Chanticleers will tie the program record for the most wins in a single season with 12, which they set back in 2013 and 2014 as a member of the FCS level.

The Chanticleers went 4-0 this season versus the Sun Belt West Division with wins over Arkansas State (Oct. 3), at then-No. 21 Louisiana (Oct. 14), versus South Alabama (Nov. 7), and at Texas State (Nov. 28).

Game Trends
  • Ragin’ Cajuns are 13-6 ATS in their last 19 road games.
  • Ragin’ Cajuns are 3-7 ATS in their last 10 games following a straight up win.
  • Chanticleers are 5-0 ATS vs. a team with a winning record.
  • Chanticleers are 4-0-1 ATS in their last 5 home games.
Expert Prediction
  • Coastal Carolina 31, Louisiana 28

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