Western Michigan vs. Ohio Betting Picks & Odds: Which Team Is Offering Value?

Western Michigan vs. Ohio Betting Picks & Odds: Which Team Is Offering Value? article feature image
Credit:

Mark Konezny, USA Today Sports. Pictured: Sean Tyler

  • The betting odds make Ohio a slight home favorite against Western Michigan, with the over/under at 61.5.
  • Do the Bobcats have an edge in this Tuesday night MACtion game? Our experts pick out their favorite bets and break down every angle you need to know.

Western Michigan at Ohio Picks & Odds

  • Spread: Ohio -1.5
  • Over/Under: 61.5
  • Time: 6:30 p.m. ET
  • TV: ESPN 2

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Collin Wilson: Can Ohio Bounce Back?

Ohio may be the most motivated team in Week 12. After losing to Miami of Ohio last week, Frank Solich’s team will need a minor miracle to make it to the MAC Championship. Ohio will now focus on getting to seven wins to qualify for a bowl game. Remaining games against Bowling Green and Akron should be wins, but the Bobcats must get a win against Western Michigan to have a shot at the postseason.

Unfortunately, motivation alone can’t turn Ohio’s defense around. The Bobcats are outside of the top 100 in opponent rushing and passing success rate, so Western Michigan running back LaVante Bellamy could have a big game on Tuesday night.

Ohio’s defense may be a mess, but its talented quarterback, Nathan Rourke, can be a difference maker in this game. Rourke’s ability to extend drives with his legs could limit Western Michigan’s offensive possessions. Ohio’s offense will have a big advantage on third down. The Bobcats are the seventh-best team in the nation in converting third downs while the Broncos rank 102nd in opponent third down conversion rate.

Ohio ranks 14th in rushing success so the Bobcats should control the clock and move the ball. Western Michigan can also move the chains, ranking 41st in rushing success and 36th in passing, but the Broncos have had issues putting together long drives that come up empty. The Broncos had three different drives of at least nine plays that ended with no points.

Western Michigan has yet to win on the road this season and it will have its hands full with a highly motivated Ohio.

The Pick: Ohio Moneyline -125 or better [In New Jersey? Bet now at PointsBet]

Kyle Miller: A Unique Betting Opportunity

Bettors have a unique opportunity on Tuesday night that wouldn’t be available to them if this were a Saturday in early October. Midweek games have a reputation of going under the total so they are typically shaded a bit in that direction. Additionally, the weather in Athens, OH is supposed to be very cold and a little windy. Here’s why you should still look towards to over in this matchup.

Western Michigan and Ohio rank 17th and 44th respectively in yards per play. These are two of the most high-powered offenses in the group of five, and they have massive advantages against the opposing defenses in this game. While both teams lean on the run more than the average team, Ohio is a little more extreme in that direction. That should bode well for the Bobcats’ offense as they rank 30th in average yards per rush while Western Michigan is 116th in defending it.

The Broncos are 51st in points per play allowed, but just 86th in yards per play allowed. That shows that they’ve been fortunate on the defensive side of the ball this year. Ohio will be able to control the line of scrimmage on offense as their line ranks 22nd in line score versus the 85th defensive line in the country. In order to hit an over in the 60’s, you’ll need some explosive plays. Ohio has been quite explosive on the ground and Western Michigan is 102nd in defending it.

Much of the same can be said when Western Michigan has the ball. The Broncos rank 8th in average yards per carry, 18th in rushing explosiveness, and 23rd in offensive line score. Ohio is 122nd, 123rd, and 115th at defending those categories respectively. There should be plenty of huge plays from the Broncos’ offense in this game.

It can be tough for a game to go over a total this high when neither team wants to press the tempo and they rely on the run. The clock will be running because of all the rushing plays and both teams are content with letting it run. This is a special scenario where both offenses have huge advantages over the defenses, though.

If this game were played on a typical Saturday in early October, this total would be closer to 70 so I’m happy to take the over once this number hits it’s floor.

The Pick: Over 61.5

[In New Jersey? Bet now at PointsBet]

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