Kent State vs. Iowa Odds, Prediction, Pick: Betting Value on Another Over/Under (September 18)

Kent State vs. Iowa Odds, Prediction, Pick: Betting Value on Another Over/Under (September 18) article feature image

Keith Gillett/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Iowa Hawkeyes football team.

  • The Iowa Hawkeyes host the Kent State Golden Flashes in a Week 3 college football matchup.
  • The Hawkeyes are coming off a huge win over Iowa State last week, but Keg doesn't think either offense will get going today.
  • Check out Keg's breakdown for the game, along with updated odds and a betting pick below.

Kent State vs. Iowa Odds

Saturday, Sept. 18
3:30 p.m. ET
Big Ten Network
Kent State Odds
-105o / -115u
Iowa Odds
-105o / -115u
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute college football odds here.

The Hawkeyes are rolling this year and have separated themselves as an elite team. Iowa comes into this game ranked in the top 5 in September for the first time since 1985.

Kent State is 1-1 and still has many things to figure out.

Saturday's game will be the third meeting between the two schools, with both previous meetings coming at Kinnick Stadium. Iowa has outscored Kent State 80-7 in the two matchups.

The Hawkeyes are also currently the only team with wins over two top-20 teams. Will being a big favorite this weekend affect the determination they've had these first two weeks?

Kent State Golden Flashes

The MAC coaches and the media picked Kent State to win the East Division this fall.

A year ago, the Golden Flashes led the country in points per game, their total offense ranked 18th nationally (517.0 YPG) and they slotted in at 42nd in scoring (35.0 PPG).

The 2021 season brings new challenges, especially in Week 3. While they do have an experienced QB and an offense known for putting points on the board, this Iowa defense may be too much for them.

Flashes Offense

Quarterback Dustin Crum is one of the better players at his position in the MAC, if not the best. He can stress defenses with his arm or legs. However, Crum has not faced a defense as stout as the one he'll see at Iowa.

The rushing attack for Kent State carried the way vs. VMI, as the team combined for 494 yards and seven touchdowns on 62 carries last week.

Marquez Cooper led the team with 119 yards and one touchdown on 12 carries. Joachim Bangda and Daniel Bangura both chipped in with 80 yards and one touchdown apiece.

Flashes Defense

The defense is allowing 437.0 yards per game, which ranks 107th among 130 FBS programs.

The Golden Flashes currently lead the nation with eight interceptions while Iowa ranks second with six. I expect both defenses to be stout this week and, as a result, expect both teams to look to the run game for results.

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Iowa Hawkeyes

The Hawkeyes have drawn attention all over college football after playing two ranked opponents in the first two weeks and beating both by impressive margins.

That's been due in large part to Kirk Ferentz's ability to pin opposing offenses inside their own 20 and keeping them there with one of the best defenses in the nation.

Hawkeyes Offense

The offense has struggled so far this year, but it's partly due to their first two games being played vs. two of the better defenses on their schedule this season.

Iowa State and Indiana began the week ranked in the top 30 nationally in yards yielded per game. Iowa's defense has scored three touchdowns over two games, which has played a massive factor in its offense only having four touchdowns in the same period.

Quarterback Spencer Petras' job has been limited to preventing turnovers and recognizing protections. But at the end of the day they're winning games, and however they do it, that's the main goal.

Hawkeyes Defense

Ball security is paramount for an Iowa team with a stingy defense and Tory Taylor, the best punter in the country. If it can improve incrementally offensively to take advantage of what the other two phases provide, the Hawkeyes will achieve the level of complementary football needed to be ultra successful.

The most significant factor in both of Iowa's wins has been its ability to force turnovers. The Hawkeyes picked off three Michael Penix, Jr. passes, and corner Riley Moss turned two into pick-6's in a Week 1, 34-6 rout.

They intercepted Iowa State star QB Brock Purdy three times and scored on a forced fumble in last Saturday's 27-17 upset over the Cyclones.

Kent State vs. Iowa Matchup Analysis

Toggle the dropdowns below to hide or show how Kent State and Iowa match up statistically:

Kent State Offense vs. Iowa Defense




Rush Success
Line Yards
Pass Success
Pass Blocking*
Big Play
Finishing Drives
* Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)

Iowa Offense vs. Kent State Defense




Rush Success
Line Yards
Pass Success
Pass Blocking*
Big Play
Finishing Drives
* Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)

Pace of Play / Other
PFF Tackling
PFF Coverage
Middle 8
SP+ Special Teams
Plays per Minute
Rush Rate
68.6% (11)
60.5% (37)

Data via College Football Data (CFBD), FootballOutsiders, SP+, PFF & SportSource Analytics.

Kent State vs. Iowa Betting Pick

The Hawkeyes are rolling this year and have separated themselves as an elite team. I expect a low-scoring game here.

Kent State likes to push tempo despite the fact it runs the ball so often out of its spread formation. However, Iowa has a tendency to slow down every team it faces.

These two defenses are both off to a hot start, and I expect that to continue this week.

The total for this game currently sits at 57 and I'll be taking the under. I feel confident on this number down to 56. While we've seen both of these defenses to produce their own "offense," I don't expect either actual offensive unit to produce enough to surpass this number.

Pick: Under 57

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