Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#311 Buffalo -5.5 vs.
#312 Kent State 55.5
Thursday, November 14, 2019 at 7:00pm EST
Written by David Hess

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#311 State University of New York at Buffalo
#312 Kent State University
5-4
3-6
5-4
5-4
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28
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College Football action on Thursday evening and we will see a pair of teams from the Mid-American conference square off as the Buffalo Bulls grapple with the Kent State Golden Flashes at Dix Stadium in Kent, Ohio. Buffalo won this game at home last year by a score of 48-14.

The Buffalo Bulls enter this game playing very well as they have won their last three games in a row and are now at 3-2 within the MAVC after starting league play at 0-2. The offense has taken off of late as the Bulls have scored 86 points in their last two games combined after scoring a total of 61 points through their first two league games. The defense has been strong all year but even more so of late as they have allowed just 10.25 ppg over their last four games in regulation. Can the Bulls continue to play well on both sides of the ball? We shall see.

The Golden Flashes are trending in the opposite direction as they enter this game having lost their last three games in a row. Kent State is now at 3-6 overall, including 2-3 in league play. Their offense has been solid of late as they have averaged 29 ppg over their last three games but unfortunately, the Golden Flashes have allowed 34.3 ppg over the same stretch. The good news is that all three of their losses in a row have come by seven points or less, so they are not playing that bad at all. Can the Golden Flashes find enough defense against a hot offense to pull off the upset? You'll have to check back to find out.

Buffalo Looks For It's 4th Win In A Row

The Buffalo Bulls did not have a great start to their year but they are starting to put things together. The Bulls began their season at 2-4 with one of their two wins coming against an FCS foe in Robert Morris. Since their rough start, they have rattled off three wins in a row and all three wins have been by at least 21 points. Buffalo has outscored their foes 107-34 over that stretch and will now look to keep it rolling against a struggling Kent State team. The offense has shown up of late as the Bulls enter this game having scored 86 points in their last two games after notching a total of 61 points over their previous three games. In their last game, they crushed Eastern Michigan0n the road by a score of 43-14. Buffalo trailed the game 7-2 after one quarter but outscored the Eagles 27-0 in the 2nd frame and that was all she wrote.

The Bulls rolled up 460 yards of total offense in the contest, including 252 yards on the ground. Jaret Patterson led the attack with 160 yards rushing and two TDs. He leads the team in rushing with 995 yards, which is 16th in the nation. The Bulls ranked 123rd in the nation in passing but they are 17th in rushing and that is key as they will be facing a Kent State team that is 128th in the nation against the run. Kyle Vantrease has thrown for just 679 yards with five TDs and one INT so far this year. The Bulls are a bit old school as they rely on their ground game and defense to win games. In their last four games, they have allowed just 10.25 ppg in regulation. The Bulls gave up just 210 yards in the win over the Eagles and they are now 12th in total yards allowed, 42nd against the pass, 5th against the run and 36th in points allowed at 22.3 ppg. The defense will need to step up against a Kent State offense that has played well of late. This will be a big game for the Bulls as they look tp secure bowl eligibility.

The Defense Is A Mess For Kent State

While the Bulls have won three in a row, the Golden Flashes have lost three in a row. They are trending in the opposite direction and at 3-6 on the year, the Golden Flashes cannot afford another loss or they will be completely eliminated from contention for a bowl game. The offense has been solid of late, and I will get back to that in a moment, but I have to talk about the defense right now. The Golden Flashes have allowed an average 34.3 ppg over their last three games and they have allowed an average of 39.3 ppg in their six losses this year.

That compares to allowing just 15.3 ppg in their three wins. Stopping the run has been a major issue as the Golden Flashes are 128th in the nation in that department, allowing 256.1 ypg on the ground so far. They have even been worse of late, allowing an average of 272 ypg on the ground in their last three games. That is not good news as the Bulls are 17th in the nation in rushing. If they can stop the run, then Kent State will be in huge trouble in this game.

Now on to the offense. the Golden Flashes have been playing well on offense of late as they have averaged 413.3 ypg and 29.0 ppg over their last three games, but still, they have lost all three due to their lack of defense. Can the offense keep playing well? It will not be easy as the Bulls have allowed just 250.3 ypg and 11.3 ppg over its last three games. Kent State put up 33 points and 428 yards of total offense against the Toledo Rockets in their last game but it wasn't enough as they fell by two points, thanks to missing a two-point conversion.

Dustin Crum had a very nice game as he threw for 252 yards with three TDs and no INTs. Crums has had a very solid season, throwing for 1602 yards with 13 TDs and just one INT, but still, the Golden Flashes are 3-6 on the year. KSU ranks 95 in passing so far and 57th in rushing. They had 171 yards on the ground against the Rockets and have averaged 170.7 ypg on the ground over their last three games. Keeping that up will not be easy as the Bulls have allowed just 33.7 ypg on the ground over their last three games.

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The Bulls won this game by 34 points last year and this one could be just as ugly. In the era of pass-happy teams, you still need to run the ball to be effective and the Bulls have a massive edge in both running the ball and defending the run. The Bulls have the 17th ranks ground attack in the nation and will be facing a Kent State team that is 128th against the run. Even worse is that the Golden Flashes have allowed 270 ypg on the ground over their last three games. The Bulls will completely stampede the Golden Flashes in this one. On the other side of the ball, Kent has averaged 170.7 ypg on the ground over their last three games but Buffalo has allowed just 33.7 ypg on the ground over that stretch. Dustin Crum has had a nice season for KSU this year but his life will be a living hell with no ground game to help him out. The Bulls will control this game from start to finish and the clincher is the fact that they are 5-0-1 ATS in their last six trips to Kent State.

Prediction: Buffalo -6

Full-Game Total Pick

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The Bulls have been strong on offense and the Golden Flashes have been better on offense of late but still, I see this one going under the total. Buffalo has a strong ground game that is going up against one of the weakest run defenses in the nation. They will run the ball a ton in this one and that will help move the clock along. As I stated, the KSU offense has been better of late, but the Bulls defense has been very strong as they have allowed just 11.3 ppg over their last three games. I can not see the Golden Flashes contributing enough in this game to it Over the total. The Under is 6-1 in Buffalo's last seven road games vs. a team with a losing home record and 8-3 in Kent State's last 11 games following a straight-up loss.

Prediction: Under 55.5
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Written By David Hess

David has always had a fascination with numbers and sports, so he combined the two to become a handicapper and a writer for us here at Winners & Whiners, along with StatSalt. All the information that David puts in his articles are well-researched and his predictions are well-thought out. He is a big fan of all the major pro sports and the colleges making David a very versatile and a constantly winning handicapper. David has been writing for the past 10 years and has been handicapping for over 20 years. He will help you beat the Man, so be sure and follow along.