SMU vs. James Madison Prediction, Game Preview

    SMU vs. James Madison prediction and game preview. The Mustangs look to improve to 2-2 on the season as they host the 3-0 Dukes.

    September 21, 2015

    It’s homecoming weekend for the SMU Mustangs, which play James Madison for the first time. We take a look at the unfamiliar foes below in the SMU vs. James Madison prediction and game preview.

    SMU vs. James Madison Game Preview


    Date: Saturday, September 26
    Game Time: 7:00 ET
    Network: ESPN3

    Follow and/or Contact @Rich Cirminiello 

    Why You Need To Care

    New head coach Chad Morris is building something on the Hilltop, even if it’s not yet reflected in the record. SMU, so bad a year ago, showed spurts of competitiveness against Baylor and most recently TCU. And now that the Big 12 portion of the schedule is over, the Mustangs could put their rebuilding plans into second gear. They’ll entertain a dangerous James Madison team that’s buried its first three opponents.

    Why James Madison Will Win

    SMU’s defensive problems will continue against QB Vad Lee and the Dukes. Lee, a Georgia Tech transfer, headlines an attack averaging 51 points per game. The Mustang will also have a tough time slowing the backfield tandem of Khalid Abdullah and Cardon Johnson, who are averaging more than six yards a carry.

    Why SMU Will Win

    At this stage, Morris’ impact has been felt fastest on offense, which is no surprise. Against No. 3 TCU, the Mustangs produced 508 yards and four touchdowns. Not bad for a team that couldn’t get out of its own way in 2014. Matt Davis’ run-pass potential keeps defenses guessing, and the receiving corps is contributing in the pass—and run—game.

    Player Who Matters

    Davis isn’t getting much help from his blockers. His pass catchers, though, have been a different story. Courtland Sutton, a 6-4 redshirt freshman, in particular, will cause problems for the Dukes. Sutton is averaging almost 22 yards a grab and has four touchdown catches.

    What’s Going To Happen?

    It’s way under the radar, but Davis vs. Lee will be one of the sneaky-good quarterback matchups of Week 4. The dual-threats will trade blows throughout in an entertaining and tight affair. Davis will land the knockout punch in the final quarter, using his feet to deliver a homecoming victory.

    SMU vs. James Madison Prediction

    Final Score: SMU 41, James Madison 34, Line: No Line, o/u: No Line
    Must See Rating: 5: Republican Debate, Second Round – 1: Republican Debate, First Round … 1

    MORE: College Football Bowl Projections After Week 3


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