Toledo Rockets (3-0) at Ball State Cardinals (2-2)
|Date & Time||Saturday October 3, 2015, 3:00 PM (EDT)|
The Line: Ball State Cardinals +6.5 -- Over/Under: 57
The Toledo Rockets will look to remain unbeaten on the season as they travel to Scheumann Stadium to take on the Ball State Cardinals this Saturday afternoon in College Football action.
The Toledo Rockets improved to 3-0 (0-0 MAC) on the season after they able easily defeat the Arkansas State Red Wolves 37-7 this past Saturday. The Rockets were able to get it down on both sides of the ball in the victory as they outgained Arkansas State by a 477-209 margin and was able to force the Red Wolves into committing 3 turnovers. The Rockers were without their best offensive player in RB Kareem Hunt due to a hamstring injury but got great contributions by backups Terry Swanson (17 carries, 71 yards, 2 TD) and Damion Jones-Moore (18 carries, 64 yards, 1 TD). Offensively, the Rockets are averaging 27.7 ppg. Leading the way at QB for the Rockets is Phillip Ely who has completed 48.3% of his passes for 683 yards, 2 TD and 2 Int. Corey Jones is leading the way for the Rockets WR’s as he has 17 receptions for 155 yards and a TD. Toledo had the best rushing defense in the MAC in 2014 and the defensive has fared well so far in 2015 as they are holding opponents to just 14.0 ppg. LB Jaylen Coleman (35 targets) and DL Orion Jones (16 tackles, 4.5 sacks) have led the way for the Rockets defense. Toledo current has a plus-5 turnover margin on the season.
The Ball State Cardinals dropped to 2-2 (1-0 MAC) on the season after being defeated 24-19 by 17th ranked Northwestern Wildcats. Ball State was up at halftime but was outscored by a 17-6 margin in the third quarter in the loss. The Cardinals were outgained by Northwestern by a 546-359 margin but was able to force the Wildcats into committing three turnovers. Offensively, Ball State is averaging 29.5 ppg this season and are led by two of the better WR’s in the MAC in Jordan Williams (23 receptions, 347 yards, 3 TD) and KeVonn Mabon (19 receptions, 145 yards). Riely Neal has had the most success at the quarterback position this season as he has completed 59.8 % of his passes for 488 yards, 3 TD’s and no Int. Ball Sate has a solid ground game that accumulated 928 yards on the ground this season and are led by Darian Green (57 carries, 402 yards, 4 TD) and James Gilbert (43 carries, 212 yards, 5 TD). Ball State returned 7 starters on the defensive end from their 2014 squad but have struggled keeping points off the board as their opponents are averaging 33.3 ppg. Ball State has a plus-4 turnover margin on the season and is led by LB Ben Ingle who has recorded 30 tackles.
The Rockets are 5-0-1 ATS in their last 6 games following a S.U. win and 4-0 ATS in their last 4 road games. The Cardinals are 11-4 ATS in their last 15 game in October and 5-2 ATS vs. a team with a winning record.
Toledo has shown that they can go on the road and win big games after defeating the 18th ranked Arkansas Razorbacks earlier this season. Ball State looked impressive last week against Northwestern and has to be encouraged by their defense as they’ve given up just 52 points over the past two weeks compared to the 104 points they allowed to VMI and Texas A&M in the first two weeks of the season. Toledo should have Kareem Hunt back in the lineup this weekend and if they do, I think they’ll be able to hold the Cardinals offense in check and score enough to cover this spread. Take Toledo to cover.