NCAA Football Game Preview: Ohio at Eastern Michigan – 11/9

Nov 9, 2021

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Game: Ohio Bobcats at Eastern Michigan Eagles  

Time: 8:00 p.m. ET 

Odds: Bobcats +5.5, Eagles -5.5 

Total: 60.5 

Another Tuesday night, another dose of MAC-tion! Last week, Eastern Michigan got a mid-week victory over Toledo on the road. Tonight, the Eagles will host the 2-7 Ohio Bobcats. Once again, MAC fans should be excited as EMU has the highest-scoring offense in the MAC and Ohio still hasn’t figured out how to stop anyone this season. 

The Eagles average 35 points per game and have topped 50 points three times this season. That includes their last two games in a row. The Eagles beat Toledo last week 52-49 after having beaten Bowling Green 55-24 in their previous game.  

The catalyst that makes the Eastern Michigan offense go is QB Ben Bryant, a transfer from Cincinnati. So far this season, Bryant has completed 69.3 percent of his passes and thrown for 2,190 yards and 13 touchdowns. The ground game is a two-headed attack featuring running backs Darius Boone Jr. (371 yards, 6 TDs) and Jawon Hamilton (411 yards, 4 TDs).  

The Bobcats, who beat Miami (OH) last week to break a three-game losing streak, are going to have their hands full on defense. Ohio’s defense has had a rough time this season giving up 31.8 points per game so far. That ranks No. 92 in the nation. Surprisingly, Ohio has played just well enough to keep the Bobcats in most of its games. Prior to beating Miami (OH) 35-33, Ohio lost 34-27, 27-26, and 30-27. 

Ohio, which lost long-time head coach Frank Solich just before the season, has not had a typical Bobcats season. Solich, who retired due to health reasons, usually had Ohio competing for division championships. Ohio had just two losing seasons during Solich’s 16-year reign.  

The defense has been a huge issue for Ohio, but the offense has struggled to be explosive. The Bobcats have used both Kurtis Rourke (1,251 yards passing, 7 TDs) and Armani Rogers (334 yards passing) at quarterback. Rogers is a dynamic athlete who happens to be the Bobcats’ second-leading rusher with 461 yards and six touchdowns. De’Montre Tuggle leads the team with 621 yards and seven scores.  

Ohio only scores 22.7 points per game though the Bobcats have scored at least 26 points in each of their five MAC games so far. Ohio has been able to keep games close and is 4-1 ATS in its last five games. Eastern Michigan has done the same and covered in four of its last six games.  

Ohio has dominated this series winning eight of the last ten games between the two schools. The Bobcats have covered the spread in five of the last six against the Eagles.  

The teams trend in different directions when it comes to totals. The Under has hit in four of Ohio’s five MAC games thus far. With EMU scoring at least 31 points in its last three games, all three of those games went Over the game total. None of those three totals were as high as tonight’s total of 60.5.