College Football Picks: W. Michigan vs. Northern Illinois

Jeff Grant

Monday, November 25, 2013 4:43 PM GMT

Monday, Nov. 25, 2013 4:43 PM GMT

The Northern Illinois Huskies will try to complete a perfect regular season Tuesday, as they prepare to host the Western Michigan Broncos at Huskie Stadium. Let’s take a closer look at the college football betting lines for this Mid-American Conference matchup, with the opening kickoff scheduled for 7:00 p.m. ET on ESPN2.

Taking on a ranked opponent

Western Michigan will play a top-25 opponent for the 23rd time in school history in Week 14, as it looks to finish the season with a 2-10 SU and 4-8 ATS record against college football odds.

Broncos first-year head coach P.J. Fleck and defensive line coach Vinson Reynolds were teammates with one another at Northern Illinois in the early 2000’s, which is important to consider from a motivational standpoint.

Quite a run

 Northern Illinois sits in the No. 14 spot in the current BCS standings, as it enters this affair as one of only four teams nationally with an 11-0 record.  The Huskies have tallied 45 wins over the last four seasons.

The program has managed to beat the sportsbooks in its last five victories, while the OVER has cashed three times in that span.

College football handicappers will also find that the Huskies have won 25 consecutive games at this venue—the longest active streak of its kind in that nation.

Davis

The Broncos will need to score at least 21 points to potentially cover the number in this game, as their defense is allowing 35.6 points per game, while they’ve surrendered 165 during their four-game losing streak in this series.

Western Michigan is capable of putting up some numbers if it targets wide receiver Corey Davis, who leads all true freshman in receiving yards and touchdowns.

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Heisman Trophy candidate

There’s no doubt that Huskies quarterback Jordan Lynch is a legitimate threat to win the 2013 Heisman Trophy, considering he accounts for 63.7 percent of the team’s offense, while compiling a 23-2 career record under center.

Lynch has never lost a MAC game, a true road game or a home game during his time at the position.  He is one of nine players in college football history to rush for 3,000-plus yards and throw for more than 5,000 in his career.

Prediction

I’m going to recommend that readers back the Broncos, as I believe they’ll be properly motivated by Fleck in this affair.

Western Michigan entered the season with 31 underclassmen on its depth chart, which ranked as the seventh most in the country, but a good performance in this spot could provide momentum for the program heading into 2014.

College Football Pick:  Western Michigan Broncos +35

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