Whoa. Just the two games. This is gonna take some getting used to. Although maybe it's "our" bye week, since neither are on TV. Nonetheless, each has a little somethin'-somethin' for those willing and able to attend-slash-watch the game legally.
For alien clarification, this is 0-9 Akron at 2-7 Ball State. The odds say Ball State is a two-touchdown favorite, but boy I can't see that big of a blowout. If Akron plays a complete game, they can win. Although Akron has yet to score more than 20 on an FBS opponent, and they haven't hit the 400-yard mark on offense all year, but last week they held Temple to six points at halftime and 30 for the game. You might remember UConn also let the Owls score 30.
The Cardinals came close to wins at Toledo and vs. EMU, and were a couple fumbles shy of being a much less laughable 4-5. Throw in the shoulda-won Liberty game. Now they're a best-case 5-4 team. They could have Miami's season, but alas. They're 0-3 in games decided by less than a touchdown. The wins against SEMO and CMU were by double-digits.
Roo can invest everything they have into winning this one, much like they kept Indiana close, and get on the board. Also, for what it's worth, Akron has the better kicker: Igor Iveljic. You'll want to see that if it comes down to a game-winning field goal. They can do it. I want to see them do it. Guess: Akron 23, Ball State 21
A deceptively important game, and this is one that could make the MAC East even more tangly. Imagine this scenario: Kent State's at two losses. They win this game. Then Temple, now at two losses, gives Ohio and Miami their second losses each. Now you've got FOUR two-loss teams and the MAC tiebreakers are immediately sponsored by Texas Instruments before Kent State and Ohio play the day after Thanksgiving.
But we're getting ahead of ourselves. This game would have to be the first domino to fall for our descent into Jenga madness. Good on the Flashes for pulling off two straight wins after a second-through-fourth-quarter collapse in the Glass Bowl. But just putting a single point on the board in the last two weeks against the Al Golden Barrier has been a chore unlike any other. Do you mind if we call that Owls defensive line the Al Golden Barrier?
Because of this matchup, mayhem shall be averted, although watching the first and third best defenses in the MAC (Hi, NIU!) play each other is going to result in some endzone emaciation. Bring a granola bar. Guess: Temple 23, Kent State 16