Last Updated Jan 16, 2023, 8:34 AM

LendingTree Bowl Betting 2023 Odds, Predictions, Preview

The Southern Miss Golden Eagles defeated the Rice Owls 38-24 in the 2022 Las Vegas Bowl.

Check out last year's coverage here below and tune back in with us soon for the 2023 Las Vegas Bowl Odds, Picks and Predictions.

The Rice Owls are the only 5-7 team taking part in bowl season this year. There weren’t enough 6-6 teams to fill the allotted bowl slots, so Rice was able to make a bowl game as the 5-7 team with the highest APR.

To no one’s surprise, they are underdogs per the college football betting odds against the Southern Miss Golden Eagles in the LendingTree Bowl. This bowl game will be held on Saturday, Dec. 17, 2022, at 5:45 p.m. ET from Hancock Whitney Stadium in Mobile, Alabama.

Rice Owls vs. Southern Miss Golden Eagles Betting Prediction

Neither the Rice Owls nor the Southern Miss Golden Eagles ended the year on a high note. Rice was 5-4 and lost three straight games to close out the regular season. The Owls were blown out by 30+ points in four of the losses, and all four of their FBS wins were by 12 points or less.

Meanwhile, Southern Miss lost three straight games in November but defeated Louisiana-Monroe to get to 6-6. The Golden Eagles were able to upset Tulane and nearly knocked off Liberty in their season opener, showing a much higher ceiling than the Owls. Southern Miss is the play considering what we have seen from the Golden Eagles at their best and the relative strength of the Sun Belt in comparison to Conference USA.

The play is the Golden Eagles to win and cover the LendingTree bowl matchup.

Score Prediction: Southern Miss 27, Rice 17
Best Bet: Southern Miss -6

These teams will meet in the SRS Distribution Las Vegas Bowl on Saturday, December 17, 2022, at 2:30 p.m. ET from Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Rice Owls vs. Southern Miss Golden Eagles Betting Odds

Rice Owls vs. Southern Miss Golden Eagles Betting Resources

  • Date: Saturday, December 17, 2022
  • TV-Time: ESPN, 5:45 p.m. ET
  • Venue: Hancock Whitney Stadium
  • Location: Mobile, Alabama
  • Expert Picks

Rice Owls vs. Betting Analysis

Freshman A.J. Padgett will be the starting quarterback for Rice in this game. T.J. McMahon was the starter for the Owls for most of the season, but he was injured in Rice’s loss to Western Kentucky last month and hasn’t seen the field since that point. Padgett began the year as the Scout Team QB, but he saw action in Rice’s last two games, and head coach Mike Bloomgren has decided to go with the youngster in the LendingTree Bowl. In losses to UTSA and North Texas, Padgett completed 20 of 40 passes for 339 yards with two touchdowns and an interception.

The good news for Padgett and the Owls is that star receiver Luke McCaffrey is expected to play after missing more than a month due to injury. McCaffrey was the team’s top receiver after transferring in from Nebraska, and he has 51 receptions for 656 yards and six touchdowns on the season. That hurt the effectiveness of Bradley Rozner as teams focused on stopping him in the passing game. Rozner was Rice’s big play threat with 41 catches for 834 yards and nine TDs. Rice threw more interceptions than any other team in college football this season, so keep that in mind on Saturday.

The Owls are the second-worst team taking part in a bowl game per SP+. Rice has the 111th ranked defense in the nation by SP+, as this unit has been unable to stop the run or the pass. They are surrendering 6.2 yards per play (120th in the nation), and the Owls rank dead last nationally in turnover margin.

RB Frank Gore Jr. will be getting plenty of touches for Southern Miss in Saturday's bowl game. (Getty)

Southern Miss Golden Eagles vs. Betting Analysis

Frank Gore Jr. is the star for Southern Miss. The son of the future Hall of Fame running back has been solid during his three years in Hattiesburg, and he surpassed 1,000 rushing yards for the first time in 2022. Gore has run for 1,053 yards (5.1 YPC) and seven touchdowns, and he has proven to be a solid passer in certain “Super” formations where he takes the snap.

There isn’t much else of note on this offense for the Golden Eagles. Southern Miss has started four different quarterbacks this season, and head coach Will Hall has stated that junior Trey Lowe will be QB1 in this game. Lowe started the last three games of the season for the Golden Eagles, completing 47 of 86 passes for 632 yards with two touchdowns and an interceptions. Jason Brownlee is the go-to receiver in this offense by a country mile with 52 receptions for 819 yards and seven touchdowns on the year.

Southern Miss has a very good defense. The Golden Eagles rank 40th in Defensive SP+, and they have done an excellent job stopping the run. To make matters worse for Rice, this has been an opportunistic secondary with 16 interceptions on the year. Safety Jay Stanley is someone to watch with four interceptions and three forced fumbles on his way to being named Third Team All-SBC.

LendingTree Bowl History

The LendingTree Bowl began in 1999 and the matchup currently features schools from the Mid-American Conference (MAC) and the Sun Belt. The game takes place at Ladd Peebles Stadium from Mobile, Alabama. This game was previously called the Mobile Alabama Bowl, GMAC Mobile Alabama Bowl, GMAC Bowl, Bowl and Dollar General Bowl. 

Arkansas State has made the most appearances with four while owning a 2-2 SU and 1-3 ATS record. Appalachian State won the latest installment in 2017, top Mid-American Conference champ Toledo by a 34-0 score.

In 2018, Troy kept the 'dogs barking with a 42-32 comeback victory against Buffalo of the MAC. The Trojans outscored the Bulls 21-8 in the second half to earn the victory. It was the second win in three seasons for the Trojans in this game.

In 2019 under the new LendingTree banner, Louisiana picked up a 27-17 win for the Sun Belt Conference, while Miami (Ohio) was able to grab the cover as a two-touchdown 'dog, a common theme at this bowl game no matter the name. The MAC has dropped five straight in this game.

In 2020, Georgia State snapped a five-game run by underdogs, pounding Western Kentucky by a 39-21 score as 3-point favorites.

And in 2021, it was Liberty routing Eastern Michigan by a 56-20 count, giving favorites a 2-0 SU/ATS run.

YearMatchupSpread, TotalsATS Result
2022Southern Miss Golden Eagles 38 Rice Owls 24USM -6.5, 45.5Favorite, Over
2021Liberty 56 Eastern MI 20Liberty -9.5, 58.5Favorite, Over
2020Georgia State 39 Western KY 21Georgia State -3, 50.5Favorite, Over
2019Louisiana 27 Miami (OH) 17Louisiana -15, 55.5Underdog, Under
2018Troy 42 Buffalo 32Buffalo -1.5, 51.5Underdog, Over
2017Appalachian State 34 Toledo 0Toledo -6.5, 61.5Underdog, Under
2016Troy 28 Ohio 23Troy -6, 49Underdog, Over
2015Georgia Southern 58 Bowling Green 27Bowling Green -5.5, 63Underdog, Over
2014Toledo 63 Arkansas State 44Toledo -3, 70.5Favorite, Over
2013Arkansas State 23 Ball State 20Ball State -6.5, 63.5Underdog, Under
2012Arkansas State 17 Ball State 13Arkansas State -3, 64Favorite, Under
2011Northern Illinois 38 Arkansas State 20Arkansas State -1, 65.5Underdog, Under
2010Miami (OH) 35 Middle Tenn State 21Middle Tenn State -1.5, 48.5Underdog, Over
2009Central Michigan 44 Troy 41Central Michigan -3, 63.5Push, Over
2008Tulsa 45 Ball State 13Tulsa -2.5, 70.5Favorite, Under
2007Tulsa 63 Bowling Green 7Tulsa -5.5, 77.5Favorite, Under
2006Southern Miss 28 Ohio 7Southern Miss -6.5, 42.5Favorite, Under
2005Toledo 45 UTEP 13Toledo -3, 62Favorite, Under
2004Bowling Green 52 Memphis 35Bowling Green -3, 67Favorite, Over
2003Miami (OH) 49 Louisville 28Miami (OH) -13, 67.5Favorite, Over
2002Marshall 38 Louisville 15Marshall -2.5, 63Favorite, Under
2001Marshall 64 East Carolina 61Marshall -2.5, 67Favorite, Over
2000Southern Miss 28 TCU 21TCU -7, 43.5Underdog, Over
1999TCU 28 East Carolina 14East Carolina -5.5, 46Underdog, Under

For more information on bowl games, check out our College Football Bowl Central