Staff Predictions: Owls take on Ohio in first road game of the season

This is the first encounter between the two sides.


Paul Leachman

Justin McKithen (left) and LaJohntay Wester (right) clearing the smoke as they rush the field for the opening game against Charlotte on August 27, 2022.

FAU will enter its first road game of the 2022 season in Athens, Ohio, against the Ohio University Bobcats.

The Owls are coming off a dominant 43-13 victory over Charlotte, as they are looking to keep a perfect record to start their campaign.

For both FAU and Ohio, this marks the first matchup between the two teams in their history. They are scheduled for Saturday with a 6 p.m. start time, as ESPN+ will head the broadcast.

The University Press Sports Staff returns with their predictions after going 2-1 last week.

Cameron Priester – Sports Editor (0-1)

It’s no secret that FAU looked great in its victory over Charlotte in the season opener. However, there is less certainty on if the improvements shown will last over the course of an entire season. 

This is an opportunity for the Owls to prove their improvement from the first week was not a fluke.

After scoring on their third play from scrimmage against Charlotte, FAU will likely once again come out very aggressive on offense. Expect offensive coordinator Brent Dearmon to dial up multiple deep passes downfield, maybe even a trick play or two, on the first drive.

The Bobcats struggled all year on offense in 2021, averaging 22.6 points per game, which ranked 106th in the FBS. In addition, they lost their top two contributors over the offseason in running back De’Montre Tuggle and wide receiver Cameron Odom.

The FAU defense should not have many problems keeping Ohio’s offense in check if they play in similar fashion to last week: fast and aggressive. 

Barring any major offseason improvements by Ohio, if the Owls can come out of the locker room in rhythm like last week, expect them to depart from Athens with a 2-0 record. 

Prediction: FAU 31, Ohio 14


Richard Pereira – News Editor (1-0)

The Owls begin their time on the road this season with a first-ever matchup against the Bobcats.

FAU did a lot of things right in its season-opening victory against Charlotte. They ran the ball to their advantage and had graduate quarterback N’Kosi Perry put up a great passing game, completing 16 of his 21 passes to his teammates for a total of 256 passing yards.

The Owls shined with their defensive scheme. After conceding the first touchdown of the game, they shut the 49ers down for nearly two quarters while scoring 33 unanswered points.

For Ohio, the team begins the season coming off a 3-9 record in the 2021 campaign. They did worse at home than on the road, losing all but one game on their own field.

The Bobcats do have some highlights for the Owls to look out for. They will have to keep track of redshirt junior quarterback Kourtis Rourke, who totaled up to 1,801 passing yards for 11 touchdowns in 10 appearances last year.

While Ohio should not be immediately counted out, this game will go to the Owls’ favor if the Bobcats have an unpleasant start.

Prediction: FAU 33, Ohio 17


Trey Avant – Staff Writer (1-0)

While FAU struggled on the road last season going a measly 1-5, they should dispel any road woes in this matchup. Ohio’s defense will have a ton of issues containing FAU’s offense. 

Last week, FAU quarterback N’Kosi Perry threw for 256 passing yards and one touchdown while running back Larry McCammon III rushed for 118 rushing yards and one touchdown.

FAU has a much improved defense this season and held a very good Charlotte offense to only 13 points. Ohio quarterback Kurtis Rourke is accurate, but he is not a big play machine. The Bobcats will rely heavily on the run game to win. 

Running back O’Shaan Allison is leading the backfield for Ohio and stopping him will be key for FAU’s victory. Unfortunately, outside of Allison, Ohio does not have enough to defeat FAU.

Prediction: FAU 41, Ohio 3


Kevin Garcia – Staff Writer (0-0)

On the heels of an impressive 43-13 win in last week’s season opener, FAU should carry that momentum into its matchup with Ohio and pick up another victory. 

Ohio‘s offense lacks big play ability, making this an ideal matchup for a defense led by its secondary. If the Owls can shut down wide receivers James Bostic and Tyler Walton, they will find victory.

Quarterback N’Kosi Perry looked solid in his first start after a full off-season with his team. The graduate student completed 72% of his passes, as FAU’s offense on paper is a mismatch for the Bobcats’ secondary and look for Perry to exploit that. 

Running back Larry McCammon III played a huge role in last week’s win, and the Owls will need him to do so again this week. The Bobcats defense ranked 103rd in rushing yards allowed per game in 2021.

While FAU should earn their second win, it will not be in a dominant fashion as Ohio will not go away without a fight in its home stadium. The Owls’ defense still needs time to gel together so there’s potential for the Bobcats to break off with a couple of scores. 

Prediction: FAU 30, Ohio 20

For information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected] or tweet the staff:  Cameron Priester (@PriesterCameron), Richard Pereira (@Rich26Pereira), and Trey Avant (@TreyAvant3), and Kevin Garcia (@Kevingar658)