Old Dominion Monarchs 2023 College Football Preview

Old Dominion Monarchs 2023 College Football Preview

July 4, 2023

2022 Recap

Record – 3-9

ATS – 5-7

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times..” <A Tale of Two Cities> <Charles Dickens> <1859>

The first half of the season was definitely a success as the Monarchs stood at 3-3 with upset victories over Virginia Tech and Coastal Carolina (!) under their belt. What could possibly go wrong? Well, Old Dominion proceeded to lose their final six games to finish with a disappointing record of 3-9. Recall that the Monarchs had gone bowling the previous season.

Is there any reason for optimism heading into 2023?

Old Dominion Monarchs 2023 Outlook


The Monarchs had the worst scoring offense in the Sun Belt LY (19.5 PPG) despite getting a decent campaign out of QB Hayden Wolff (18-6 TD to INT) and good production from RB Blake Watson (916, 5 TD) and WR Ali Jennings (959, 9 TD). ALL of those guys are gone and it’s reload time on offense. The alarm bells are going RINGY DINGY DINGY at MEGALOCKS HQ as we ponder the QB situation. It appears as tho they’ll be going with an inexperienced transfer from Furman in Grant Wilson to lead the way and we’ll see how that goes. The RB group is unproven but maybe JUCO transfer RB Kadarius Calloway can be a difference-maker? Losing Jennings is a killer for the WR corps but Javon Harvey is a good piece to build around (558, 18.4, 4 TD) and Pitt transfer Myles Alton adds depth to the position. The OL could be a sore spot as they just bring back a pair of starters and lose their best lineman from the 2022 unit. We project that they’ll do better than 19.5 PPG but this is still one of the weaker offenses in the Sun Belt.


The Monarchs allowed a lot of yards LY (443 YPG, #112 FBS) but they only gave up 26.6 PPG (#64). A good reason for this dichotomy was the Monarchs’ red zone defense which ranked #1 in the Sun Belt. Old Dominion has a major retooling project ahead of them this season. A good chunk of the two-deep needs to be replaced and there are only three starters returning for battle. The good news is that one of them is TACKLING MACHINE LB Jason Henderson who led the nation in tackles with 186 of those BAD BOYS. Terry Jones is a talented safety but they’ve gotta find three new starters on the back end. The DL doesn’t look great on paper but they should be able to put together a decent rotation. This has the look of a below-average Sun Belt stop unit but we don’t think it’ll be a total disaster.


Things look pretty good in this area. They’ve got a fine PK/punter combo to rely upon in Ethan Sanchez (10-13 FG LY) and Ethan Duane (43.1). Both primary return men are also back in the mix. **

** Only team in FBS history with two doods named Ethan ^^

^^ needs fact check

Schedule Analysis

Overall – It’s gonna be tough sledding. The non-conference docket contains dates with Virginia Tech, Wake Forest, and Liberty, but at least they get to play something called Texas A&M-Commerce. Don’t let those accountants stab you with pencils! The draw from the West was has them battling Louisiana and Southern Miss.

Potential ATS Trouble Spot – at Virginia Tech (Sept 2)

The Hokies will look to avenge last season’s defeat in Norfolk. REVENGE is a dish best-served COLD.

Season Win Total

Market consensus July 4

Over 3.5 -125

Under 3.5 -105


Lean: Under

That’s a low bar to clear, but assuming they can beat the finance geeks from Texas A&M-Commerce, it’s still hard to find three more wins on the schedule.

MEGAmazing Tidbit

The largest naval base in the world, Naval Station Norfolk, is located in Norfolk along with one of NATO’s two Strategic Command headquarters. No word on if the male naval officers in the area have been forced to wear high heels and miniskirts in the name of diversity.


Head coach Ricky Rahne might have his BITS AND PIECES getting warm on the hot seat if this season goes the way that the second half of the 2022 campaign went down. The roster doesn’t appear to have too many game-changers and the Sun Belt isn’t the FUN BELT for the bottom rung of teams. The competition is getting fierce.

We hope we’re wrong but we’ll call for three wins and a rebuilding campaign for the Monarchs.