College Football MACtion Odds, Picks: 2 Bets for Tuesday’s CFB Games
Michael Allio/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Ohio Bobcats megaphones.
- College football Week 12 action kicks off with two midweek MACtion matchups on Tuesday night.
- Tuesday's college football slate features two key matchups: Bowling Green vs. Toledo and Ohio vs. Ball State.
- Check out our full betting breakdowns and picks for both Tuesday night MAC football games below.
It's always easier to start a week knowing that the football action doesn't end on Monday. We can thank MACtion for that.
Tuesday's college football slate features two games from America's most beautiful conference starting at 7 p.m. ET: Bowling Green vs. Toledo and Ohio vs. Ball State.
Both games could have significant implications for the conference championship, as well as bowl eligibility at large.
Our writers broke down both games and shared a pick for each. Read on to see how we're betting both Tuesday night MACtion games, and be sure to check back tomorrow for our Wednesday night MACtion picks.
Tuesday MACtion College Football Best Bets
The team logos in the table below represent each of the matchups that our college football staff is targeting from Tuesday's slate of MACtion games. Click the team logos for one of the matchups below to navigate to a specific bet discussed in this article.
|Specific bet recommendations come from the sportsbook offering preferred odds as of writing. Always shop for the best price using our NCAAF Odds page, which automatically surfaces the best lines for every game.|
Bowling Green vs. Toledo
By Cody Goggin
As the college football season winds down, we’ll only have a few more chances to appreciate some midweek MACtion — and this is one of them.
This week, Bowling Green will travel to Toledo to take on the Rockets in what could be a pivotal division battle.
Toledo has been the best team in the MAC this season, and it's the favorite to win the conference. Toledo already clinched its spot in the MAC Championship last week with its win over Ball State.
Bowling Green has been one of the biggest surprises in the MAC this year, sitting at 5-5 and looking at earning bowl eligibility for the first time since 2015. Prior to the season, BGSU had a win total set at 4.5, which it has already exceeded.
The road will be tough over the next two weeks with Toledo and Ohio on the schedule, but there's still a path for the Falcons to win the MAC East if they can pull off those upsets.
Bowling Green's success this year has come almost exclusively from its defense. The Falcons enter as the 100th-best offense, according to SP+, and rank 101st in FBS in Offensive Success Rate.
Their play-calling skews more toward the pass, as they throw at the 42nd-highest rate in the country. Bowling Green’s passing game ranks 97th in Success Rate, while the running game ranks 96th.
Generating explosive plays has been a problem for this Bowling Green rushing attack, as the Falcons rank 122nd in rushing PPA.
Another key issue has been its lack of pass blocking, ranking 96th in PFF pass-blocking grade. This may end up causing some issues for quarterback Matt McDonald, who's facing a solid Toledo pass rush.
Bowling Green’s defense has helped carry the team to five wins this season, but it's a tough unit to figure out. Overall, this team ranks 66th in Success Rate and 19th in Havoc, but it sits 80th in explosiveness and 85th in Finishing Drives.
The Falcons defense has made its hay in the run game this year. It ranks an impressive 29th in Rushing Success Rate Allowed but has struggled in allowing big plays. For this reason, the Falcons rank 116th in explosiveness and 70th in PPA against the run.
However, their passing defense has been quite the opposite. They rank just 94th in Defensive Passing Success Rate, but they rarely allow big plays. In fact, the Falcons rank 21st in passing explosiveness allowed and 62nd in PPA.
Toledo quarterback Dequan Finn returned to action last week after missing the previous week with a shoulder injury. He returned in style against Ball State, putting up 301 yards and three touchdowns through the air on the day.
Finn has been very strong this year and has helped lead this Toledo team toward a potential conference championship. The Rockets rank 40th in Passing Success Rate to go along with ranks of 28th in explosiveness and 14th in PPA.
Toledo’s rushing game hasn’t been quite as strong as its passing game. It rushes at the 28th-highest rate in the country but comes in at 70th in Rushing Success Rate and 61st in Rushing PPA.
The Rockets offense is the 37th-best unit in the country, per PFF, and the 63rd-best, according to SP+. Jason Candle’s squad should be able to outmatch the Falcons, as both of these marks are well above what they'll be facing on Tuesday.
Toledo’s defense has been one of the best in the MAC this season, if not the best. The Rockets rank 18th in Defensive Success Rate, including 18th against the run and 35th against the pass.
Toledo ranks 10th in coverage and 18th in run defense, according to PFF. These numbers aren’t scheduled-adjusted, but they do give a good indication as to how sound this defense is.
The Rockets' one Achilles’ heel this season has been allowing explosive rushing plays to kill them. Despite their overall success in the run game, the Toledo defense ranks 115th in rushing explosiveness allowed, which causes it to rank just 76th in rushing PPA.
Fortunately for the Rockets, Bowling Green ranks 111th in rushing explosiveness, so these issues in the run game shouldn't arise for Toledo.
Bowling Green vs Toledo Betting Pick
The key matchup in this game will be Toledo’s passing offense against this Bowling Green pass defense.
If Finn can have a successful day and move the ball, then I expect Toledo’s offense to have a good day. But given Bowling Green’s ability to plug up the run, the Rockets will be in trouble if they can't move the ball through the air.
I don’t think Bowling Green’s offense will have any answers for Toledo’s strong defense.
With the questions surrounding the Rockets offense, I like the under in this game. The strength of the Bowling Green defense matches up with this Toledo attack in a way that should turn this into a low-scoring rock fight.
Ohio vs. Ball State
Three teams were tied with a 4-1 record in the MAC East entering last week. Ohio now stands alone atop the division after its 37-21 victory over Miami (OH) in last week's midweek MACtion.
The Bobcats are now in control of their own destiny with just two games remaining. First up is Ball State.
In 2020, the Cardinals defeated Buffalo to cap off a 7-1 MAC Championship run. Since then, the program has a record of just 11-12 while splitting its 14 conference games.
Ball State needs to secure a victory in one of its final two games to become bowl-eligible this season.
Does Ohio take control of the East, or does Ball State become bowl-eligible after this matchup?
The Bobcats are streaking and show no signs of letting up anytime soon. The program has now won five games in a row, including three outright upsets as underdogs.
More importantly for bettors, the Bobcats have covered the spread in all six MAC games this season.
Much of that is due to the unexpected success of quarterback Kurtis Rourke. Last season, Rourke was more of a game manager who averaged 180 yards per game and 6.9 yards per pass attempt.
But this year, the junior has exploded throwing for over 300 passing yards per game while averaging 9.2 yards per attempt. He has tossed 24 touchdowns to only four interceptions this season.
It doesn’t hurt that he has a former Ohio State wide receiver in Sam Wiglusz to throw to. Wiglusz is averaging six receptions per game in the slot and has found the end zone on nine occasions this season.
The Ohio defense has been a question mark. It's allowed 30 points and nearly 450 yards per game, ranking outside the top 90 nationally in both categories.
The Bobs will be attacked by a Ball State offense that has thrown the ball often without much success. The Cardinals rank 13th in the nation, averaging 40 passes per game, but they've mustered just 5.9 yards per attempt to rank 120th.
Ball State has gone 2-2 in nonconference play with its average margin of victory sitting at 24 points in those matchups. The Cardinals have gone .500 in there six MAC games this year, but each one has been decided by seven points or less.
The loss last week to Toledo eliminated Ball State from contention in the MAC West, but a victory in one of the next two games will send the program to postseason play for the third time in four years.
The offense is spearheaded by running back Carson Steele. The sophomore running back is averaging 25 carries a game while putting up 5.1 yards per carry and finding the end zone 12 times this season. In his six games against conference foes, Steele is averaging 138 yards per game.
Steele has been a monster in November specifically.
He rushed for 192 yards on 29 carries against Kent State two weeks ago and followed that up with 198 yards and three touchdowns against Toledo.
Though Ball State wants to feed Steele, the Cardinals still throw the ball over 40 times per game.
Redshirt junior quarterback John Paddock has been largely mediocre this season, averaging 230 yards per game. It's less ideal when that average comes from nearly 40 pass attempts per game for only 5.8 yards per pass attempt.
Paddock has 16 touchdowns passes this season, but he’s also thrown 11 interceptions, including one in eight of his 10 games this season.
Ohio vs Ball State Betting Pick
Ohio is the hottest team in the MAC, having covered the spread in all six matchups against conference opponents this season.
But the Bobcats are coming off a victory over in-state rival Miami (OH) and will now be traveling on the road against a sneaky Ball State team that boasts one of the top running backs in the conference.
Steele has rushed for over 190 yards two weeks in a row against Kent State and Toledo. The Ohio rushing defense has certainly had its moments recently, holding Akron, Western Michigan, Buffalo and Miami (OH) to a combined average of 59 rushing yards per game.
But we’ve seen it get gashed on the ground at times, allowing 605 yards rushing to Northern Illinois and Kent State. Ball State has the ground attack to put up similar numbers in this game.
The Cardinals defense has been strong against the pass, allowing just 6.2 yards per pass attempt this season. They can limit the big plays and keep Rourke in check.
Ohio is taking over 80% of the money in this game, and I consider myself a contrarian. This is a great sell-high spot on the Bobcats, so I'll back Ball State to become bowl eligible as a home underdog.
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