Made famous by the 63-60 Northern Illinois vs. Toledo game in 2011, MACtion returns this week as college football’s Mid-American Conference begins their mid-week schedule in order to get some exposure for the conference. Each Tuesday and Wednesday night through the end of the regular season, the MAC will grace college football fans and bettors with its presence. One of Tuesday’s two games is Bowling Green at Akron in what could be a de facto MAC East Division Championship Game.
Bowling Green vs. Akron College Football Preview
Date/Time: Tuesday November 4, 8:00 p.m. ET
College Football Betting Odds from WagerWeb
College Football Betting Favorite: Akron -5.5
Dino Babers is 5-3 straight up and 3-5 ATS in his first foray into the FBS coaching world. Even though BGSU has seemingly played a bunch of track meets, they’re only 4-4 in totals, though three of their four road games have gone over. Terry Bowden’s Zips are 4-4 SU and 2-6 ATS. In two-plus seasons at Akron, Bowden is just 10-22 straight up and 13-18-1 against the number.
Bowling Green Falcons:
Expectations were high for Bowling Green this season. Dino Babers was expected to add another level to this offense and the Falcons had one of the best defenses in the country in a defense-second conference. To date, however, the offense is right on par with last season’s team and the defense is significantly worse. Matt Johnson was lost for the season early on and James Knapke has filled in admirably, but the Falcons defense has left the offense no margin for error week after week. The Falcons defense is allowing over 35 points per game this season after holding opponents under 17 per game in each of the last two seasons. It’s interesting that Clawson’s staff has put together a solid defense at Wake Forest in spite of a terrible offense, so there’s something to be said about the coaching change and the effect it has had on the defense.
Terry Bowden has done a strong job turning the Akron program around in a pretty short amount of time given what he had to work with. The Zips were 3-33 from 2010-12 and won five games last season. They’ll probably be bowl eligible this season with four wins already. The Zips haven’t finished over .500 since 2005 when they played in the Motor City Bowl. Kyle Pohl has not been in the lineup in the last two games, both losses, and this is clearly a different team with him on the field. He’s expected to be back under center this week. This is a Zips team that won on the road at Pitt and held the Panthers to just 10 points. Their defense has only allowed 20 points per game this season and the offense has passed the ball well. The Zips will participate in a lot of MACtion down the stretch as their last four games are all on Tuesday nights.
Free Pick: Akron Zips -5.5
This is the kind of game that the new and improved Zips have been waiting for. They have a chance to tie BG for the division lead and grab hold of the tiebreaker in the process. With Pohl back in the lineup, the offense takes on another dimension and both teams have had extra time to prepare. The advantage may go to the more experienced Bowden, especially with the soft spots available in the Bowling Green defense.
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