The Ball State Cardinals and Ohio Bobcats will face off on the turf at Peden Stadium. CBS Sports Network will broadcast the action and this Thursday matchup is scheduled to kick off at 7:00 p.m. ET.
Betting Preview: Ohio Bobcats vs. Ball State Cardinals
The Cardinals come into this Thursday MAC game as a significant dog here and are currently getting 10 points. If they are wanting to play the moneyline, bettors would currently need to lay down $400 in order to win $100 back on the Bobcats (-400). The Cardinals are getting +300 moneyline odds. There will likely be multiple solid in-game betting scenarios in this showdown, and oddsmakers have determined the over/under (O/U) to be 62 points.
Betting odds have shifted slightly from where they first opened. The opening line was -11 while the game’s total was set initially at 61.5.
The Cardinals are 4-4 against the spread (ATS) and are down 1.4 units so far. They’ve been a good under bet and have posted an Over-Under record of 2-5.
The Bobcats have gained 0.0 units this season. The team is 4-3 ATS and has an even O/U record of 3-3.
The Cardinals have gone 3-5 straight up (SU), including 2-2 SU against conference opponents. The Bobcats are 4-3 SU overall and 2-1 SU in conference play.
The Cards fell to Eastern Michigan 42-20 in a thumping where Riley Neal completed only 21-of-39 passes for 157 yards, along with a score and a pick. Neal (77 rushing yards on 13 attempts, one TD) also spearheaded the running attack in the loss and was complemented by James Gilbert (41 yards on 13 carries). Justin Hall (10 receptions, 81 yards) and Riley Miller (four catches, 36 yards, one TD) handled the receiving duties.
Ohio just earned a 49-14 win over Bowling Green. The defensive unit let the Falcons rush for 100 yards on 26 attempts. Scott Miller torched the defense, putting up 145 yards on six catches for Bowling Green. For Ohio, Nathan Rourke completed eight-of-12 passes for 193 yards and four touchdowns. A.J. Ouellette (81 yards on 14 rush attempts) and Maleek Irons (116 yards on 12 carries) handled the ground game in the win as Andrew Meyer (three receptions, 52 yards, one TD) and Papi White (two catches, 92 yards, two TDs) led the receiving attack.
Ball State has run the ball on 49.6 percent of its offensive possessions this year while Ohio has a rush percentage of 61.1 percent. The Cardinals have rushed for 185.5 yards per game (including 168.8 per game versus Mid-American opponents) and have 13 touchdowns via handoffs this year. The Bobcats are putting up 208.1 rush yards per game (189.3 in conference) and have 17 total rushing TDs.
The Cards offensive scheme has tallied 251.1 yards per game through the air overall (266.3 per game against conference opposition) and has 11 passing TDs so far. The Bobcats have put up 248.3 pass yards per contest (255 against MAC competition) and have 15 total pass scores.
Ball State seems to hold the upper hand when it comes to limiting the pass. The team has allowed opponents to run for an average of 192.0 yards and throw for 213.6 yards per game. The Ohio defense has allowed 311.0 yards per game to opposing passers and 154.4 yards per game on the ground. The Cards are allowing an adjusted net yards per pass attempt (ANY/A) of only 5.71 to opposing QBs, while the Bobcats have given up an 8.07 ANY/A.
Rourke has been more efficient than Neal lately. His adjusted net yards per pass attempt sits at 9.04 for the year and 12.47 across his past two outings while Neal’s ANY/A is 5.26 and 4.33 over the last two games.
These two conference foes did not get a chance to face each other in 2017.
Ball State Cardinals vs. Ohio Bobcats Free Pick
SU Winner: Ohio, ATS Winner: Ohio, O/U: Under