Thursday Night MAC Football Betting Preview: Ohio Bobcats at Central Michigan Chippewas

Ohio Bobcats at Central Michigan Chippewas
Kelly/Shorts Stadium – Mount Pleasant, Michigan
Thursday, November 10, 2011, 7:30 pm Eastern, TV: ESPNU
Opening Line: Ohio -7
Current Line: Ohio -6 1/2
Opening Total: 58 1/2
Current Total: 60
Opening Money Line: Ohio -255 / CMU +215
Current Money Line: Ohio -255 / CMU +215

The Central Michigan Chippewas host the Ohio Bobcats Thursday night in MAC action. Ohio is a 6.5 point road favorite.

The 6-3  Ohio Bobcats are 3-2 in the MAC East division and tied with Miami-Ohio for first place in the division. The Bobcats travel to 3-7 Central Michigan who is 2-4 in conference. Ohio is coached by Frank Solich and has road wins over New Mexico St 44-24 and Akron 37-20 along with home wins over Gardner Webb 30-3, Marshall 44-7, Kent St 17-10, and last week against Temple 35-31. The Bobcats have losses at Rutgers 38-26 and and Buffalo 38-37 along with a home loss to Ball St 23-20. Central Michigan is coached by Dan Enos and has home wins  over South Carolina St 21-6 and Northern Illinois 48-41, along with a road win at Akron 23-22. The Chippewas have losses at Kentucky 27-13, Western Michigan 44-14, Michigan St 45-7, North Carolina St 38-24, Ball St 31-27, and last week at Kent St 24-21 along with a home loss to Eastern Michigan 35-28. Central Michigan has dominated the all time series against Ohio 21-4-2. The Chippewas won the last meeting in the 2009 MAC Championship game 20-10 in Detroit.

Last week, Ohio hosted Temple in a battle for first place in the MAC East. The Bobcats were 4 point underdogs at home on the college football betting line. The two teams traded scores throughout the game. Temple took a 31-28 lead with 4:46 left in the fourth quarter. Ohio scored with 1:41 left to take a 35-31 lead, on a 5 yard touchdown pass from QB Tyler Tettleton to Donte Foster, and held off a final desperation drive by the Owls. Ohio had 521 total yards including 240 rushing yards. Tettleton threw for 258 yards and 3 touchdown passes, and added 29 yards on the ground and a rushing touchdown. Tettleton even caught a 23 yard pass.  Running back Donte Harden had 20 carries, 184 yards, and a touchdown along with 2 catches, 75 yards, and a touchdown. Receiver LaVon Brazill had 7 catches for 165 yards. Temple had 437 yards including 308 rushing yards.

Ohio is averaging 458.8 yards a game including 264.8 passing yards and 194 rushing yards. The Bobcats score 32.2 points a game. Ohio has 20 turnovers and has allowed 15 sacks this season. The Bobcats are 67/137 on third and fourth down conversions, and 34/40 scoring in the red zone with 22 touchdowns. Ohio gives up 333.4 total yards, including 194.9 passing yards and 138.6 rushing yards a game. The Bobcats are allowing 21.6 points a game. Ohio has forced 18 turnovers and 14 sacks this season. Bobcat opponents are 60/158 on third and fourth down conversions, and 22/26 scoring in the red zone with 14 touchdowns. Ohio has 2 defensive touchdowns this season.

Tettleton is 179/280 for 2,241 yards, 20 touchdowns and 5 interceptions, along with 83 carries, 287 yards, and 6 touchdowns. Harden has 111 carries, 698 yards, and 2 touchdowns, along with 16 catches, 190 yards, and 2 touchdowns. Ryan Boykin has 87 carries, 337 yards and a touchdown, along with 13 catches, 88 yards, and a touchdown. Beau Blankenship has only 39 carries, but has 2 touchdowns. Brazill has 44 catches, 740 yards, and 8 touchdown catches, plus a rushing touchdown. Riley Dunlop has 26 catches, 376 yards, and 5 touchdowns. Foster has 20 catches, 231 yards, and 3 touchdowns. Kicker Matt Weller is 33/34 on extra points and 15/21 on field goals with a long of 46 yards. Ohio has 6 players listed as questionable or out for the season, including 3 tight ends and 2 defensive players.

Central Michigan traveled to Kent St last week, and the Chippewas were 2.5 point underdogs. The two teams were tied at 14 at halftime, but Kent St scored 10 unanswered points to take a 24-14 lead. Central Michigan scored with 5:52 to pull within 24-21 but neither team scored for the rest of the game. CMU kicker David Harman missed a 28 yard field goal at the end of regulation that would have sent the game into overtime.  Central Michigan had 402 total yards but only 86 rushing yards. The Chippewas were unable to overcome 2 turnovers. Chippewa quarterback Ryan Radcliff threw for 316 yards with 3 touchdowns and 2 interceptions. Receiver Titus Davis had 10 catches, 192 yards, and 2 touchdowns. Courtney Williams also had a touchdown catch for the Chips. Kent St had 422 total yards including 141 rushing yards.

Central Michigan is averaging 390.6 total yards and 22.6 points a game. The Chippewas are average 269.5 passing yards and 121.1 rushing yards a game. CMU has 21 turnovers and has allowed 14 sacks. Central is 56/147 on third and fourth down conversions, and 19/24 scoring in the red zone with 10 touchdowns. The Chippewas are allowing 410.7 yards and 31.3 points a game on defense. CMU gives up 239.6 passing yards and 171.1 rushing yards a game. The Chips have forced 10 turnovers and 11 sacks. CMU opponents are 76/168 on third and fourth down conversions, and 36/43 scoring in the red zone with 26 touchdowns. The Chippewas have one defensive touchdown this season.

Radcliff is 211/364 passing (58%) for 2,691 yards, 20 touchdowns and 14 interceptions. Running back Anthony Garland has 76 carries, 365 yards, and a touchdown. Paris Cotton has 52 carries, 333 yards, and 2 touchdowns, and 11 catches, 166 yards, and 2 touchdown catches.  Zurlon Tipton has 66 carries 296 yards, and a touchdown, along with 12 catches for 109 yards. Tim Phillips has 54 carries, 214 yards, and a touchdown, along with 10 catches for 80 yards. He hasn’t played in three games and is listed as questionable for the Ohio game. Davis has 29 catches, 577 yards, and 4 touchdowns.  Cody Wilson has 47 catches, 522 yards, and 3 touchdowns. He is questionable with an undisclosed injury and missed the Kent St game. David Blackburn has 33 catches, 465 yards, and 5 touchdowns. Jerry Harris and  Williams also get significant targets, and could get even more if Wilson can’t go. Williams has 4 touchdown catches, and Harris has 2. Harman is 26/26 on extra points and 12/15 on field goals with a long of 45. The Chippewas have 8 players listed as questionable or out including 4 defensive players.

Central Michigan is 1-9 against the spread this season and the total is 7-3 in those games. Ohio is 4-5 ATS and the total is 6-3 this season. The Bobcats are 4-0 ATS in road games against teams with losing home records, 8-1 in November games, 6-2 in Thursday games, 17-7 in conference games, and 16-7-1 after a straight up win. The Chippewas are 6-1 ATS in Thursday games, 9-2-2 at home against teams with winning road records. 4-1-2 as a home dog, 5-2 in November, 2-5 at home, 1-4 as an underdog of between 3.5 and 10 points, 3-15 overall, 1-6 after a straight up loss, 1-7 as an underdog, 0-4 after failing to cover, in conference games, and against teams with winning records, and on turf.

After an emotional win last week against Temple to seize control of the MAC Eeast, Ohio can’t afford a let down on the road against a lesser opponent. Ohio has an explosive offense and should be able to exploit the leaky defense of Central Michigan.

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