Time: 3:30 PM ET
Spread: VIR -27.5
Spread: VIR -3700; KEN +1100
Betting odds courtesy of Bookmaker
Virginia gets a bit of a break this week after a tough schedule so far. The Cavaliers have managed to stay afloat after facing three ranked teams in the first four weeks of the season. Virginia trumped over then- No. 21 Louisville and lost by just eight points to then – No. 21 BYU.
In the opening week then- No. 7 UCLA won by eight points as well. Going 1-2 against AP ranked opponents isn’t the worst, and against Kent State this week, the Cavaliers are 27.5 point favorites. Virginia won’t face another ranked opponent until Nov. 8 (top ranked FSU).
Virginia’s stats could be better, but it isn’t a reflection of a poor team necessarily. Tough opponents lead to things like ranking 68th in passing yards and 90th in rushing yards. That said, the stats from the Cavaliers aren’t particularly revealing.
Greyson Lambert and Matt Johns have both been used at QB, with similar results. Lambert has a better completion ratio (64.9 percent) but he has thrown 4 INTs to just 2 TDs. Johns reverses that with 4 TDs and 2 INTs. Both have rushed for 46 and 47 yards, though Lambert has scored two TDs via the rush. Lambert is battling an ankle injury and is questionable for the game.
Kevin Parks, Khalek Shepherd and Taquan Mizzell have handled the rushing for Virginia, and the trio has combined for over nearly 450 yards. All three have scored TDs, but none offer more than 4.6 yards per carry, and the team-leader in that category is QB Johns with just eight carries.
Four WRs have been good for the Cavaliers, the best having been Canaan Severlin, who leads the team with two receiving TDs. Darius Jennings leads in yardage (184) and is second on the team in yards per reception (16.7). The passing attack of Virginia could potentially be very dangerous this season.
Kent State has opened the season on a real tear, or at least something that brings tears. The Golden Flashes have flashed nothing but poor play, losing its first three contests, with only one having been close. The opening week loss to Ohio came by just a field goal, but last week the Flashes were utterly embarrassed by then- No. 22 Ohio State, losing 66-0 in a laugher.
QB Colin Reardon has been the main show for a team that has little rushing attack to speak of. Reardon has 553 yards on the season, but has thrown as many INTs (4) as TDs.
He had a decent freshman season last year, but hasn’t done much to build on it. Through three games his QB rating is lower, and his completion ratio is, as well. The Flashes offensive line hasn’t done him any favors, allowing Reardon to be sacked six times in three games. His yards per completion is low too (5.12 yards per throw) because teams don’t take Kent State’s backfield seriously, and they shouldn’t. The 27.5 point spread is reasonable, given how poor the Flashes are. It easily could be a five or six TD difference in the final score.