Old Dominion vs. Liberty fearless prediction and game preview.
Date: Saturday, September 1
Game Time: 6:00 pm ET
Venue: Williams Stadium, Lynchburg, VA
Old Dominion (0-0) vs. Liberty (0-0) Game Preview
It’s the first game in the new world of Liberty football, moving up to the provisional world of the FBS with a chance to come up with a huge win against a relatively-nearby foe.
Old Dominion beat Liberty 21-17 back in 2013 back when the program was just getting everything rolling at the FBS level. Coming off a 5-7 season with a disappointing finish to miss out on bowl eligibility, it needs this to go into a big game against FIU with a good win under its belt.
With the two schools just over 50 miles apart, this has the makings of a potential rivalry down their road. But that only happens if the games are good – this one should be spirited.
One Reason Why Liberty Will Win
It’s the home opener in the FBS for a program looking to make its way into the establishment.
Liberty really, really wants to get into a conference – there are a whole slew of stories and issues around that – so it wants to make a point whenever it can. With the great passing game in place, it might just be able to come out roaring.
The Old Dominion secondary was a problem last season and needs to tighten up in a big way – and that’s where Flames QB Stephen Calvert comes in. He’s back along with almost all of the top receivers returning. It’s a veteran team with an infusion of depth now that it has an expanded roster – the offense will work.
One Reason Why Old Dominion Will Win
Liberty should be able to run it a little bit, but the ODU run defense that was a problem last season won’t get tested all that much.
The pass rush, though, should be a killer, thanks to Oshane Ximines and Daniel Appouh ready to crank it up and get behind the line.
Offensively, ODU should be able to control the game on the ground with Jeremy Cox running behind a veteran line with the talent and experience to be far better. The Monarchs have to keep Calvert and company off the field.
What’s Going To Happen
Old Dominion will be far better, and it’ll show it as the season goes on, but at home in its first game in the new world, Liberty will come up with a terrific performance and pull off the win.
The offense will be sharp – the Monarch pass defense will still need some work – and the Flames will be inspired defensively. It’ll be a thriller that goes down to the wire, and Turner Gill’s team will hold firm with ODU getting a chance to pull out the win on its final drive.