NCAA Football Pick: Northern Illinois vs. Toledo
Date/Time: November 20th, 8:00 ET
College Football Odds from BetDSI
Point Spread: Northern Illinois -3
Two of the best teams in the MAC are going to square off in one of the best venues in the conference. The Glass Bowl is set to host the Toledo Rockets, as the hometown crowd tries to spoil the BCS bowl bid for the Northern Illinois Huskies.
We’ve been talking about the Huskies all season long, and they are definitely worth talking about. They have 31 regular season wins in a row, and it isn’t often that they are even challenged. For those that just look at the final score, it would seem as though NIU beat the snot out of the Ball State Cardinals, arguably the second best team in the MAC last week. However, the team scored three TDs in the final six minutes of the game to take a tie game that should have never been covered and turned it into what looked like a romp. QB Jordan Lynch threw for a season-high 345 yards and two TDs, and he is now up to 2,216 passing yards and 1,273 rushing yards on the season. This team isn’t just Lynch, though. The defense is at least respectable this year, allowing 25.2 points per game, though we worry a lot about how this team would stack up against a team in a BCS bowl game like last season when it was buried by the Florida State Seminoles.
Losing this game would perhaps knock the Huskies out of the MAC Championship Game as well. The Rockets only have one loss in conference, and if this game is won, they will seize control of their own destiny in the conference, barring a collapse by both the Buffalo Bulls and the Bowling Green Falcons down the stretch of the season. Last week’s home win against the Bulls was the biggest victory of the season for the Rockets, who have only been beaten by the Ball State Cardinals this year. Remember that the team’s other two losses both came against SEC teams, and that defeat against the Missouri Tigers doesn’t look so bad anymore. In the last five games, the Rockets have put up at least 45 points four times, and in the one game which they didn’t, they still went on the road and beat Bowling Green with its top ranked defense in the MAC by a field goal as four point underdogs.
This looks like one of these games where the Huskies should run away and hide. They’ll have won the MAC East with a victory, and they might even hop over the Fresno State Bulldogs in the BCS rankings as a result. However, going into the Glass Bowl is no fun for anyone, and all five foes that have come here this year have walked away with losses. Toledo is 4-1 ATS this year at home, and it could ruin everything for the MAC on Wednesday night with the shocking upset.
Northern Illinois Huskies vs. Toledo Rockets Pick: Toledo Rockets +3