North Texas Lamar Game Preview
The North Texas Mean Green opens the 2017 football season with heightened expectations and newly revealed uniforms. While the new Nike digs will make the Mean Green look good on the field, the outcome of this Saturday’s game versus the Lamar Cardinals might be the best measure of how this season will play out for the second year of the Seth Littrell era. During the inaugural season, the Mean Green ended their campaign 5-8 with a loss to Army in the Heart of Dallas bowl, 38-31 in overtime. While the season ended in disappointment, some could consider the program turnaround a success after going 1-11 in 2015.
Lamar has faced a similar situation in recent years after an unsuccessful 3-8 2016 season which led to hiring of Mike Schultz. Schultz is facing his first assignment as a head coach, but brings experience to the table after being offensive coordinator for TCU from 1998-2008. His coaching resume includes 10 years at TCU, helping turn the 1997 team from a 1-11 record, to a 7-5 record in 1998, and had 9 bowl game appearances in his ten years with the Horned Frogs. Schultz also can lay claim to coaching future NFL stars LaDainian Tomlinson and Andy Dalton.
3 Things to Know
North Texas is 6-4 in it’s last 10 season-openers in Denton, dating back to the 1990 season.
North Texas is 4-2 vs the Lamar Cardinals . Saturday will be the first meeting since October 21st, 1986 when North Texas won the game 33-13.
Senior kicker Trevor Moore currently holds the school record for most consecutive made extra points with 99 in a row.
Players to Watch
North Texas: Quinn Shanbour
While Mason Fine was named the starter and will receive the majority of the snaps, Shanbour has received praise from coaches. It’ll be interesting to see the redshirt junior see some game time snaps should North Texas jump out to a large lead.
Lamar: James White
The Senior running back had 462 yards and 7 touchdowns in three seasons at Texas A&M. The back poses a tough task for the North Texas defense, who gave up an average of 5.3 yards per carry. Schultz has said his philosophy is to get the ball into his playmakers hands. North Texas should expect to see White carry the ball at least 40 times.
Where to Watch: ESPN3 / ntTV - 6pm CT
Prediction: North Texas 34 Lamar 21