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Thursday Night Mac-Tion Free Betting Pick

Northern Illinois Takes on Toledo for 1st In the MAC West

When the Jets are playing in the Thursday night NFL game, it can be tempting to find something else to watch. Interestingly enough the best football action of the night might be an early MAC tilt as the 6-2 NIU Huskies take on the 7-1 Toledo Rockets with both teams being 4-0 in the conference. The 11/2/17 college football free pick has put the home team Rockets as -8 favorites – although that has been bet down from a -9.5 open.

Worlds are going to collide in theΒ 11/2/17 college football free pick as both squads are riding four game win streaks into Thursday night. NIU is 3-1 on the road while Toledo is 4-0 at home. The Rockets won for the first time in six head to head matchups last year with a 31-24 win and four of the last five matchups have been decided by a TD or less. This is Mac-tion to a T folks.

Does NIU Retain Their Dominance?

11/2/17 college football free pick
Freshman QB Marcus Childers has shown a good grasp of the offense early. Image Rights USA Today Sports

Northern Illinois did not beat Toledo from 1990 to 2004 but as their program turned around, so did their results against the Rockets. Since 2004 the Huskies have a head-to-head record of 8-4 including a six game winning streak that was just snapped last year. NIU comes in hot, having won four straight. They weren’t all easy however – a week ago last week Eastern Michigan took Northern to OT and NIU only escaped Buffalo 14-13 despite being -7.5 favorites.

The Huskies have a top 50 rushing attack but leading runner Jordan Huff is battling a foot injury and has missed the last two games. Backup Marcus Jones had a TD last week in his absence and there is opportunity against a middle-of-the-pack Toledo rush defense allowing 160+ yards per game on the ground. The real key for NIU could be QB Marcus Childers. He’s a freshman in a big game for the 11/2/17 college football free pick, but has thrown 9TD and just 1INT and had his best passing game last week with 283 yards. Toledo is a solid 43rd in the nation in pass defense.

Toledo Comes in as Rockets on a Roll

Toledo hasn’t just been beating teams lately – they’ve been beating them up. The last three games have been a 58-17 win over Ball State, a 48-21 win over Akron, and a 30-10 victory against Central Michigan. It’s been the running game fueling the success as the Rockets flared for 303 yards against Akron and 335 versus Ball State. The Rockets have a multi-faceted ground attack between the Mac’s leading rusher Terry Swanson (728 yards), Shakif Seymour (467) and Art Thompkins (437). That being said, the NIU rush defense is elite at 9th in the nation giving up only 106.1 YPG.

Toledo is far from a one-dimensional team however. QB Logan Woodside has thrown for 2295 yards in the air this season and has 8TD to just 1INT his last two games. Woodside has thrown for 300 or more yards in four of eight games this year but once again the Huskies defense is stout in the passing game, ranking 42nd at just 201.6 YPG.

11/2/17 College Football Free Pick Betting

In last year’s 31-24 win Toledo QB Logan Woodside threw for 286 yards and 3TD to pace the Rockets offense. NIU actually outgained Toledo however 441-420 and had over 200 yards on the ground. There are some questions at the Huskies QB position but there are some rumblings in DeKalb that Childers isn’t necessarily a backup – but an upgrade. The Toledo offense is dynamic, but Northern Illinois has the #15 total yardage defense that can stop them. Bettors are split 54-46 on the home squad Toledo -8, but the road team has actually covered in six straight contests between the two teams.

Pick: Northern Illinois +8

 

 

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Carl Taylor

Every loss is a chance to learn a lesson. That being said, wins are so much more enjoyable. Follow along to tap into the wisdom I’ve learned from 20 years as a sports bettor.

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