College Football Pick: Ball State vs. Northern Illinois

Ross Benjamin

Monday, November 11, 2013 6:36 PM GMT

The 20th ranked Northern Illinois Huskies host the Ball St. Cardinals on Wednesday night. The winner of this game will be in the driver’s seat in the MAC West, and one step closer to a spot in the conference championship game. Find out who we have decided to back for this exhilarating matchup!

According to current college football betting odds Northern Illinois is a 6.0 point home favorite. The road team has covered the last 4 meetings between these two teams.

BCS Buster Again

The Northern Illinois Huskies are on the cusp of being a “BCS Buster” for the second consecutive year. They’re led by dynamic starting quarterback Jordan Lynch who epitomizes the definition of a modern era dual threat quarterback. Lynch has thrown for 1871 yards with 19 touchdown passes and just 5 interceptions. The senior has also rushed for 1150 yards and 12 touchdowns while averaging 6.6 yards per carry. 

He leads an offense that’s #5 nationally averaging 545.4 yards per game, #4 in rushing at 312.7 yards per contest, and #7 in points per game at 44.2. The Huskies have scored 38-points or more in 7 of their 9-games this season.

Cardinals under the Radar

Northern Illinois has attracted a lot of the media attention in the MAC the last 2 seasons and rightfully so. However, there’s another team that’s making some noise this season and flown a bit under the radar. Ball St. enters this contest with a 9-1 record including a perfect 6-0 in conference play. The Cardinals are also riding a 7-game winning streak.  The Cardinals have quietly gone about their business going 16-5 since the beginning of the 2012 season. Senior quarterback Keith Wenning is having a terrific season throwing for 27 touchdowns and just 5 interceptions. Wenning’s success is nothing new for Cardinals fans. In his career Wenning has thrown for 10,418 yards and 84 touchdown passes. The Cardinals offense has been prolific in their own right ranking 24th nationally in total offense, and 14th in scoring offense at 39.9 points per game. Ball St. has scored 38-points or more in 7 of their 10-games this season.

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Final Analysis

This contest is a must see for the avid college football fan. These are two explosive offenses with a pair of starting quarterbacks that don’t get the national acclaim they truly deserve. In addition, both defenses are suspect at best, and are very vulnerable to the type of offensive attacks they’re about to encounter in this game. There’s a lot at stake for both teams, and it’s one of the most anticipated games the MAC has seen in its history. I look for this one to go right down to the wire, and have a small lean for my college football pick toward the road underdog in this spot.

College Football Pick: Ball St. +6.0 over Northern Illinois