Upcoming Free Picks

Ball State vs. Central Michigan,
10-13-2018 - Expert Prediction

This is a past game! View all upcoming NCAAF games instead!

Game Snapshot with Current Line

#127 Ball State
Cardinals 54.5
#128 Central Michigan
Chippewas -2.5

Saturday, October 13, 2018 at 3:00pm

Image licensed from USA Today Sports

Game Stats

Ball State Cardinals

2 - 4

3-3
ATS
1-4
O/U
25
PPG
23
OPPG

Central Michigan Chippewas

1 - 5

4-2
ATS
3-3
O/U
17
PPG
26
OPPG

Betting Trends

All NCAAF

No betting trends available for this game. Click here to see all available for NCAAF.

Ball State at Central Michigan

When and Where: Saturday, Oct. 13, Kelly Shorts Stadium, Mount Pleasant, Michigan, 3 p.m. EDT.

Ball State looks to revive its bowl hopes and end a three-game losing streak to Central Michigan on Saturday when it faces the struggling Chippewas in a clash of West Division teams in the Mid-American Conference.

The Cardinals (2-4, 1-1 MAC West) were thwarted in their bid to take two wins from a three-game homestand following their 24-16 defeat to Northern Illinois last Saturday.

Ball State, which had won nine games combined the previous three seasons are looking to end a four-year bowl drought and avenge a 56-9 thrashing at home last year to the Chippewas (1-5, o-2 West), who are in danger of having a bowl appearance streak end at four years without a strong second half to the season.

Cards look to move past frustrating loss

Ball State came up short in its loss to Northern Illinois despite running 96 plays offensively.

The Cardinals, who were restricted to three field goals in the first three quarters, took advantage of an interception by Ray Wilborn for a short touchdown drive.

They had one last chance down eight and got as far as the Huskies’ 35-yard line, but Riley Neal threw four straight incompletions — including a fourth-down pass that was batted down in the end zone as time expired.

“We had our opportunities; we simply didn’t make enough plays in critical situations to get a win,” Cardinals coach Mike Neu told the school’s official website. “When you’re playing against a team like that, every opportunity matters.”

Ball State is averaging 458.7 yards offensively in large part due to running 85.3 plays per game. Neal has thrown for 1,501 yards and eight touchdowns, but he also has completed just 57.6 percent of his passes as the Cardinals have averaged just 26.0 points and been held to 16 or less in three of their six games.

“We’re close, but close doesn’t really count,” Neu said. “We’ve got to make sure we take advantage of those opportunities when we have them.”

Wide receiver Riley Miller is enjoying a breakout season with 35 receptions for 504 yards, already bettering both his marks from last season. Corey Lacanaria and Justin Hall have also been consistent targets for Neal, combining for 62 catches, 571 yards and two touchdowns.

The Cardinals have lost three straight to the Chippewas after winning the previous five but the defeats in 2015 and 2016 were by a combined five points before last year’s 47-point thrashing.

Young Chips take lumps in loss to Buffalo

Central Michigan has lost back-to-back games since its lone victory over FCS school Maine but took a bigger step back after a respectable loss to then-No. 21 Michigan State with its 34-24 setback at home to Buffalo last weekend.

The Chippewas were gashed for 295 rushing yards, four off their season-worst, and continued a season-long trend of struggling in that part of the game. Discounting the win over Maine, Central Michigan has given up 1,150 rushing yards and 13 TDs on the ground while yielding 5.0 yards per carry.

“Obviously we’re disappointed as a team,” senior linebacker Alex Briones told the school’s official website. “We felt coming in we were the better team, but we made some mistakes in the first half. Any time you make mistakes and (commit) penalties like that and turn the ball over you’re not going to win many games, so just got to clean it up and once we clean it up we’re going to win games.”

Chippewas coach John Bonamego followed up on Briones’ thoughts on the lack of discipline as Central Michigan was whistled for 10 penalties, its most since a season-high 12 in the opener versus Kentucky.

There were also issues for Bonamego to address offensively as Central Michigan committed four turnovers — all interceptions by Tommy Lazzaro — marking the fifth consecutive game it had at least two.

Lazzaro did have a season-best 102 rushing yards while throwing for 117 and a touchdown, but he has been picked off eight times in his four starts and completed just 50.5 percent of his passes.

Central Michigan’s 1,619 total yards is second-worst among FBS teams which have played six games and 125th of 129 overall at this level. The 16 turnovers the Chips have committed is also tied for the most among FBS teams.

The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.

Full-Game Side Bet
Rating:

While both teams are struggling, it appears Central Michigan has far more issues to sort out on both sides of the ball compared to the Cardinals, whose biggest problem appears to be finishing off drives while running all those plays.

The Chippewas have also struggled all season moving the ball offensively while holding the ball barely more than 26 minutes per game. If that trend continues against Ball State’s up-tempo offense that likely will rack up about 90 plays, they will be absolutely gassed defensively by the fourth quarter. That should give the Cardinals the separation needed for a win in this game.

Prediction: Pick: Ball State +2

Full-Game Total Pick
Rating:

Central Michigan has yet to prove itself effective offensively between its turnovers and lack of scoring. The Cardinals two biggest offensive performances came against an FCS school and a conference rival in Kent State which has given up 42.2 points per game against FBS teams.

While these teams have combined for 58 or more points in four of the previous six meetings, neither appear to have enough firepower, Ball State’s scheme aside, to get back there in this contest.

Prediction: Pick: UNDER 54 points

Full-Game Prop Bet
Rating:

Given the lack of consistency on offense for Central Michigan, Ball State should not only cover but win this game outright. The chance to get plus money on the moneyline is too good to pass up in this instance.

Prediction: Ball State +120

Half-Time Side Pick
Rating:

Central Michigan has not scored a first-half touchdown in its last four games versus FBS opponents, and even when counting the win over Maine, the Chips have totaled just 19 first-half points in their last five contests. Ball State should be able to run past them in the first half.

Prediction: Pick: Ball State +1.5 (-110)

Half-Time Total Bet
Rating:

That lack of offense for Central Michigan contributes to taking the under here. While the Cardinals do run plenty of plays, it does not always translate into points as they have been held to 10 or fewer in the first half in four of their last five contests.

Prediction: Pick: UNDER 27.5 points (-115)

Half-Time Prop Prediction
Rating:

Neither team has been especially proficient in the first half, so it would not be surprising to see single digits or a goose egg by either or both teams after the first 15 minutes.

Prediction: Pick: UNDER 10.5 points 1st quarter (-110)

Chris Altruda (@AlTruda73)

A 1994 graduate of Marquette University when they were known as the Warriors and Brooklyn native, Chris Altruda is a freelance sportswriter based in Chicago. He has worked at three major U.S. wire services and also has prior experience in sports handicapping and daily fantasy roster building. Now that the Cubs have won a World Series, he holds out hope the Jets will win a Super Bowl before he dies. Can be followed on Twitter at @AlTruda73.

Login

Forgot Password?
Forgot your password? Enter your email and we'll send you a reset token:

Return to login
Enter the token from your email and a new password. Don't forget to check your spam folder if you didn't get the email.

Upcoming Free Picks

Bank the Bet Podcast
Wednesday, Oct 17
NBA
#701 Memphis Grizzlies 209
#702 Indiana Pacers -7
7:05pm
View Pick
#703 Milwaukee Bucks -3
#704 Charlotte Hornets 217
7:05pm
View Pick
#705 Miami Heat -2.5
#706 Orlando Magic 210.5
7:05pm
View Pick
#707 Brooklyn Nets 212
#708 Detroit Pistons -5.5
7:05pm
View Pick
#709 Atlanta Hawks 213.5
#710 New York Knicks -3
7:35pm
View Pick
#711 Cleveland Cavaliers 214
#712 Toronto Raptors -13
7:35pm
View Pick
#713 New Orleans Pelicans 229.5
#714 Houston Rockets -8
8:05pm
View Pick
#715 Minnesota Timberwolves 210.5
#716 San Antonio Spurs -2
8:35pm
View Pick
#717 Utah Jazz -8.5
#718 Sacramento Kings 208
10:05pm
View Pick
#719 Dallas Mavericks 215
#720 Phoenix Suns -1
10:35pm
View Pick
#721 Denver Nuggets -1.5
#722 Los Angeles Clippers 227
10:35pm
View Pick
MLB
#911 Milwaukee Brewers 7
#912 Los Angeles Dodgers -170
5:05pm
View Pick
#913 Boston Red Sox 8.5
#914 Houston Astros -145
8:35pm
View Pick
NHL
#51 N.Y. Rangers 6
#52 Washington -260
7:05pm
View Pick
#53 St. Louis -110
#54 Montreal -110
7:05pm
View Pick
#55 Boston -110
#56 Calgary -110
9:35pm
View Pick
#57 N.Y. Islanders 6
#58 Anaheim -155
10:05pm
View Pick
Thursday, Oct 18
NFL
#301 Denver Broncos -1
#302 Arizona Cardinals 41
8:20pm
View Pick
NCAAF
#303 Georgia State 54
#304 Arkansas State -14.5
7:30pm
View Pick
#305 Stanford -2.5
#306 Arizona State 53.5
9:00pm
View Pick
NHL
#13 Boston
#14 Edmonton
9:05pm
View Pick
Friday, Oct 19
NCAAF
#307 Colorado State
#308 Boise State
9:00pm
View Pick
#309 Air Force -11
#310 UNLV 54.5
10:00pm
View Pick
Saturday, Oct 20
NCAAF
#313 Cincinnati 48.5
#314 Temple -3.5
12:00pm
View Pick
#319 Maryland 52.5
#320 Iowa -10
12:00pm
View Pick
#325 Northwestern -20
#326 Rutgers 49
12:00pm
View Pick
#329 Miami - OH 46.5
#330 Army -8
12:00pm
View Pick
#331 Michigan -7
#332 Michigan State 45.5
12:00pm
View Pick
#339 Buffalo -1.5
#340 Toledo 67
12:00pm
View Pick
#345 Illinois
#346 Wisconsin
12:00pm
View Pick
#355 Tulsa 55
#356 Arkansas -7
12:00pm
View Pick
#383 Oklahoma -8
#384 TCU 61
12:00pm
View Pick
#399 Auburn -3.5
#400 Ole Miss 64
12:00pm
View Pick
#317 North Carolina 64
#318 Syracuse -9.5
12:20pm
View Pick
#321 Virginia 45.5
#322 Duke -7.5
12:30pm
View Pick
#375 Bowling Green 69.5
#376 Ohio U -16.5
2:00pm
View Pick
#323 FAU -3
#324 Marshall 59.5
2:30pm
View Pick
#359 Utah State -15
#360 Wyoming 53.5
2:30pm
View Pick
#337 Eastern Michigan -3
#338 Ball State 51.5
3:00pm
View Pick
#363 Western Michigan -4
#364 Central Michigan 58
3:00pm
View Pick
#395 Charlotte 52.5
#396 Middle Tennessee State -17.5
3:00pm
View Pick
#369 Colorado 51
#370 Washington -15
3:30pm
View Pick
#347 Houston -12.5
#348 Navy 61.5
3:30pm
View Pick
#391 Kansas 61.5
#392 Texas Tech -20
3:30pm
View Pick
#389 NC State 53.5
#390 Clemson -17
3:30pm
View Pick
#387 SMU 61
#388 Tulane -7
3:30pm
View Pick
#379 Minnesota 56
#380 Nebraska -3.5
3:30pm
View Pick
#373 Wake Forest 60
#374 Florida State -10.5
3:30pm
View Pick
#353 UL Lafayette
#354 Appalachian State
3:30pm
View Pick
#349 UTEP
#350 Louisiana Tech
3:30pm
View Pick
#343 Penn State -14.5
#344 Indiana 61
3:30pm
View Pick
#341 Akron -4.5
#342 Kent State 54.5
3:30pm
View Pick
#335 Alabama
#336 Tennessee
3:30pm
View Pick
#327 Coastal Carolina 74.5
#328 UMass -3.5
3:30pm
View Pick
#357 Georgia Southern -12
#358 New Mexico State 53.5
4:00pm
View Pick
#371 California -6.5
#372 Oregon State 59
4:00pm
View Pick
#397 Memphis 74
#398 Missouri -10
4:00pm
View Pick
#403 Mississippi St 44.5
#404 LSU -6.5
7:00pm
View Pick
#393 UTSA 45
#394 Southern Miss -17.5
7:00pm
View Pick
#381 UConn
#382 USF
7:00pm
View Pick
#377 Texas State 59
#378 UL Monroe -10
7:00pm
View Pick
#315 UCF
#316 East Carolina
7:00pm
View Pick
#311 Vanderbilt 48
#312 Kentucky -11
7:30pm
View Pick
#333 Ohio State -13
#334 Purdue 63.5
7:30pm
View Pick
#351 Rice
#352 FIU
7:30pm
View Pick
#361 Fresno State -13.5
#362 New Mexico 55.5
7:30pm
View Pick
#367 Oregon 66
#368 Washington State -3
7:30pm
View Pick
#385 North Texas -1
#386 UAB 52
7:30pm
View Pick
#401 ODU 57.5
#402 Western Kentucky -5
7:30pm
View Pick
#405 USC 49
#406 Utah -7
8:00pm
View Pick
#365 Arizona 55
#366 UCLA -8
10:30pm
View Pick
#407 San Jose State
#408 San Diego State
10:30pm
View Pick
Sunday, Oct 21
NFL
#451 Tennessee Titans 45.5
#452 Los Angeles Chargers -6.5
9:30am
View Pick
#453 New England Patriots -3
#454 Chicago Bears 50
1:00pm
View Pick
#455 Cleveland Browns 49.5
#456 Tampa Bay Buccaneers -3
1:00pm
View Pick
#457 Detroit Lions -2.5
#458 Miami Dolphins 47
1:00pm
View Pick
#459 Carolina Panthers 45
#460 Philadelphia Eagles -5
1:00pm
View Pick
#461 Buffalo Bills 44
#462 Indianapolis Colts -7.5
1:00pm
View Pick
#465 Minnesota Vikings -3
#466 New York Jets 47
1:00pm
View Pick
#467 Houston Texans 44
#468 Jacksonville Jaguars -5
1:00pm
View Pick
#469 New Orleans Saints 51
#470 Baltimore Ravens -2.5
4:05pm
View Pick
#471 Dallas Cowboys 42
#472 Washington Redskins -2
4:25pm
View Pick
#473 Los Angeles Rams -9.5
#474 49ers 52
4:25pm
View Pick
#463 Cincinnati Bengals 58.5
#464 Kansas City Chiefs -6
8:20pm
View Pick
NCAAF
#409 Nevada
#410 Hawaii
12:00am
View Pick
Monday, Oct 22
NFL
#475 New York Giants 54
#476 Atlanta Falcons -5.5
8:15pm
View Pick