Reviewing the two games tonight and a few other college games that have experienced moves on the college football odds board this week.
College Football Picks
105 Bowling Green/106 Western Michigan- Bowling Green opened -3.5 or -4, depending on your source. The public has mostly been on Bowling Green but the wiseguys are on the Western Michigan. Bowling Green is now -2.5 on the college football odds board.
Bowling Green is probably the best team in the top-heavy MAC, but Western Michigan has had a great season in spite of three early season losses. They lost their opener to B1G Michigan State, in what was a huge game for the team and their fans. They came out the next week and let down at a very good Georgia Southern team and lost again. They beat Murray State then lost the following week to Ohio State. They played both B1G rivals very well and covered in both games. Nonetheless, they were 1-3 and the once-promising season could have turned disastrous. They have reeled off five straight wins and now sit at 6-3 and undefeated in the MAC. They have thrown the ball very well all season, and recently have their running game chewing up yardage on the ground. Their 34 year old, coach PJ Fleck, is one of the rising stars and will soon be a hot item to fill much bigger jobs, if not this year, then in the very near future.
Bowling Green has two losses on its resume, to Tennessee and Memphis, two high quality opponents. They, too, are undefeated in the MAC. As well as W Mich has thrown the ball, B Green has been even better. However they have not been nearly as effective on the ground as has W Mich.
Bowling Green’s head coach Dino Barbers is no slouch himself. He is 15-8 in his two years at Bowling Green after two conference championships in two years at Eastern Illinois. Don’t be surprised if he is mentioned for some of the bigger job openings, either.
The two teams are amazingly similar on defense. Statistically, there is almost nothing separating them. It will come down to execution.
Both teams are atop their division. This could very easily be a preview of the conference championship.
107 Northern Illinois/108 Buffalo- Northern Illinois is coming off its biggest win of the season, a 32-27 win over previously undefeated Toledo.
NIU opened -6, but has gone up to -7. The public is largely on them, but sharp money is only now starting to shown up to take the better numbers on the dog.
NIU has dominated the MAC West, representing that side of the conference in the championship game for six years in a row. They have three losses on the season, one in conference to Central Michigan. Their other two were to Ohio State and Boston College, two Power 5 conference teams. They now have 4 straight wins in the MAC and are just now playing their best football of the season.
Last week, multi-year starting quarterback Drew Hare went out of the game and most likely for the season. He was replaced by freshman Ryan Graham who played very well and led them to two late scores in the defeat of Toledo. Graham starts again for the Huskies.
Buffalo has been inconsistent, but not all that bad for first year coach Lance Leipold, who dominated Division III at Wisconsin-Whitewater (6 championships in 8 years, 109-6 record). They have now won 3 straight. I’m wondering if Leipold’s coaching is just starting to take hold.
127 Michigan/128 Indiana- More money has shown up on Michigan, there is no more -12.5 around, all Michigan -13 now.
197 Appalachian State/198 Idaho- The public was on App State with their college football picks, now some sharp money has come in on the same side. They have gone from -17.5 up to -19. I have a feeling this one goes higher.