Toledo vs Kent State Odds & Picks: The MAC Championship Bet to Make

Toledo vs Kent State Odds & Picks: The MAC Championship Bet to Make article feature image
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Scott W. Grau/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Toledo’s RayJ Dennis.

Toledo vs Kent State Odds

Saturday, March 11
7:30 p.m. ET
ESPN2
Toledo Odds
SpreadTotalMoneyline
-1
-103
149
-110o / -110u
-110
Kent State Odds
SpreadTotalMoneyline
+1
-118
149
-110o / -110u
-110
Odds via BetRivers. Get up-to-the-minute college basketball odds here.

Apologies to Akron and Ball State, but this showdown is what the mid-major maniacs wanted: Toledo vs. Kent State.

Since the dawn of the 2022-23 campaign, the Rockets and Golden Flashes looked like the cream of the MAC's crop. Both notched stellar nonconference resumes and carried forth that momentum into league play.

Annoyingly, the two only squared off once in the regular season over two months ago. Kent got the better of the Rockets in that meeting, but Toledo got the last laugh — that is, a third consecutive outright league title.

Basically, the Rockets are a literal rocket ship right now. They're winners of 17 games in a row — the nation's longest win streak to date — and enter the championship game riding a six-game cover streak.

On top of that, the revenge angle looms large in Toledo's psyche, especially given the well-documented postseason shortcomings.

Head coach Tod Kowalczyk may be the best coach in the mid-major landscape never to advance to the tournament. This evening figures to be his best bite at the apple since 2018 when Nate Oats' supercharged Buffalo Bulls took down Toledo in the MAC Tournament title game.


Toledo vs Kent State Matchup Breakdown

Last year's Kent State team was built on brute force and interior physicality. Against Toledo's smaller, guard-tilted lineup, it proved to be the Rockets' kryptonite. Kent swept Toledo in the regular season.

This season, head coach Rob Senderoff pivoted to a more balanced attack on both ends.  A deeper perimeter backcourt enabled Kent to push the pace on offense and dial up pressure on the defensive end. Again, this blueprint prevailed over Toledo in the only regular-season meeting this season.

One could argue Kent State simply has Toledo's number. One could also argue the recent lopsided success stems from the fundamental mismatches Kent creates for Toledo on both ends of the floor.

However, Toledo looks like a brand-new team right now. While down the services of top perimeter defender Tyler Cochran for most of the season, Toledo's found greener pastures in a myriad of role players.

EJ Farmer is a prime example. Farmer's blossomed into instant offense off the pine down the stretch — if Cochran were still healthy and playing a full workload, Farmer may never have gotten the repetitions he needed to pop.

Above all, RayJ Dennis has risen to a whole new level over the last month of the year. Dennis played in the shadow of Kent's Sincere Carry for most of the season, but the gap between the two catalysts has narrowed.

Toledo vs Kent State Betting Pick & Prediction

Per BartTorvik's time snapshot tool, Toledo's current mojo holds an edge over Kent State. Over the last five games, Toledo's net adjusted efficiency, relative to Kent, shows a 5-point advantage over the Flashes.

There are legitimate matchup concerns for the Rockets, but their momentum is the prevailing force in this handicap. Take the Rockets up to -1.

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