Ball St Cardinals at Buffalo Bulls, UB Stadium, Buffalo, NY
Friday, November 12, 2010, 6:00 pm Eastern, TV: ESPNU
Opening Line: Buffalo -3 (-115)
Current Line: Buffalo -3
Opening Total: 47
Current Total: 46 1/2
Money Line: Buffalo -150 / Ball St +130
The 3-7 Ball St Cardinals travel to Buffalo to take on the 2-7 Bulls in a MAC game. Neither of these teams are going to a bowl game, so this game is strictly for pride. It was only 2 years a go that these two teams played in the MAC championship game. However since that game, both lost their talented coaches to bigger programs and had to rebuild. Ball St has gone 4-1 against the spread in the last 5 meetings against the Bulls, and all 5 games have gone over the total.The Cardinals are 13-4 ATS on the road in the last 3 years.
Ball St is being outscored 30-22 for the season. They are being outgained 419-308. The main problem is the offense isn’t very good. They have turned the ball over 28 times this season and have a turnover ratio of -8. They have only converted 34 percent on third down. The Cardinals are only rushing for 156 yards a game and have 9 rushing touchdowns for the year. The passing game is only averaging 151 yards a game with 16 passing touchdowns. Keith Wenning takes most of the snaps and has 1,175 yards, 13 touchdowns, and 14 interceptions. Kely page also takes some snaps and has 3 touchdowns and an interception. Jack Tomlinson is the top receiver with 18 catches, 338 yards and 5 TD catches. Eric Williams and MiQuale Lewis split most of the carries on the ground. Williams has 3 touchdowns on 87 carries while Lewis has a touchdown on 114 carries. Defensively, the Cardinals are not that bad, but not good enough to compensate for the meager offense. They do give up 185 yards a game on the ground, and 233 yards a game against the pass.
Buffalo is even worse offensively than Ball St. They are being outscored 30-15 and outgained 343-307 yards per game. Incredibly, the Bulls have been outscored 151-10 in the first and fourth quarters combined this season. Like Ball St, they turn the ball over a lot as they have 25 for the season, and also have problems converting on 3rd downs. The Bulls have only converted 37% on third down and only 7% on 4th down. The bulls are better on defense than Ball St, as they only give up 151 yards a game on the ground. They have forced 22 turnovers and have 14 sacks for the season. The Bulls struggle on the offensive line as they have allowed 24 sacks this season. They only rush for 122 ayrds a game and have a paltry 3 rushing touchdowns for the season. Two of those are by quarterback Alex Zordich who recently took over as the starter from Jerry Davis. Zordich hasn’t been great so far but he has shown flashes that he might be the Bulls quarterback of the future as he is a true freshman. Zordich has thrown for 411 yards, 1 touchdown and 5 interceptions in 2.5 games since taking over as the starter last month. Branden Oliver the top running back for the Bulls with 99 carries and 292 yards. Four Buffalo receivers account for all their touchdown catches. Marcus Rivers and Terrell Jackson are teh top two receivers. The two have at least 41 catches each.
Both of these teams struggle on offense. Buffalo is much better on defense and that might be the difference in the game. I don’t expect to see a lot of scoring in this game because of the inept offenses. The weather will be in the mid to low 40’s, with no rain or snow. That is actually pretty mild for Buffalo in mid-November.
Our College Football handicappers are red hot and have a ton of winners on tap this weekend.