The 2021 Sun Belt Conference Championship game will be contested between the App State Mountaineers and the Ragin’ Cajuns. On paper, this game is pretty interesting given that App State is the favorite but got soundly beaten by Louisiana earlier in the season. On paper, this should also be a very exciting game in terms of the rate of scoring, with both of these moving the ball quite well on the year.
The only thing that might come in between us fans and an absolute shootout is that both of these teams both defend well. With all that said, the lines here do look a little weird with this total at 53, and the Mountaineers are entering as 3-point favorites with everything we know about these teams.
Appalachian State Mountaineers Betting Preview:
App State lost to this very Ragin’ Cajuns team midseason, which is why it is weird to see them worthy favorites in this spot. However, they have not put a foot wrong since that loss rattled off 6 straight wins following that loss, including a big win against Coastal Carolina. The Mountaineers’ last game was a blowout win, but it was expected against the Georgia Southern Eagles winning with a big second-half effort with a final score of 27-3.
QB Chase Brice was on point in that game, throwing for 235 yards and 2 TD’s, and that was nice to see considering his turnover problem this year. Brice has 22 touchdowns but a problematic 10 interceptions, so the Ragin’ Cajuns, on the other side, will be looking at that as a possible spot to take advantage and force a few turnovers. Outside of the turnovers, though, Brice has been a solid enough QB who has no problem going deep for big plays, so this really could go either way.
Thomas Hennigan was on the receiving end of a few big plays in that Georgia Southern game, and he will likely be a popular target here again, as the senior wide-out has compiled 705 receiving yards and 5 TD’s on the season.
Louisiana-Lafayette Ragin’ Cajuns Betting Preview:
On the other side of this game, Louisiana-Lafayette is also an impressive team, as they have done even better than App State in building a winning streak winning every game of the season outside of the first game against Longhorns. There really are no big-time wins on their record, as they have had a very light schedule, but their consistency has been great, and they have looked solid in plenty of these games.
The Ragin’ Cajuns’ last game was not one that they looked great in, though, as they just barely managed to get past the UL Monroe Warhawks, which ended with a score of 21-16. Over 3 touchdowns favored them in that one, so plenty more was expected of them. That last game is what happened in a few of their games this year, as they just did not really show up and managed to sleepwalk their way to a win because they were the superior team.
Now I do not doubt that they will be showing up in a big way here, but the fact that it seems like this team has a propensity to just not show up at times is something to keep an eye on from a handicapping perspective. I really think one of the main keys to victory for the Ragin’ Cajuns is to establish the run, and that will come through Chris Smith, who has looked like a very good RB all season long. Smith has 834 yards on the ground, and 8 TD’s and I would be surprised if he is not able to build upon those numbers this Saturday.
Appalachian State Mountaineers vs. Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns Betting Lines & Odds
Although App State fell to this Ragin’ Cajuns team earlier in the year, I feel like they are the right side of this one at -3. They do have the better defense and have proven they are able to step up against some of the better teams in the country. I think we see this App State defense step up and Brice to keep it clean and for them to go gate to wire in what likely ends up being a simple enough win going into bowl season.
Free Betting Pick
Appalachian State Mountaineers vs. Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns Betting Verdict: App State -3
Appalachian State Mountaineers vs. Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns Final Score Prediction: 31-21 App State