Michigan Chippewas vs. Western Michigan Broncos Preview and Pick

Central Michigan Chippewas (5-4) -2.5, 67 o/u at Western Michigan Broncos (3-6) +2.5, 67 o/u Waldo Stadium, 7:30 pm Eastern, Tuesday
by Badger of Predictem.com

Both teams will be well rested for this Mid American Conference (MAC) clash in Kalamazoo, Mich., as the unusual Tuesday night kickoff has allowed both the Chippewas and Broncos a full 10 days to prepare and scheme.

In most seasons the in-state rivalry between these two schools would be enough to hype the game, but Central Michigan has much more to play for than rivalry. With a win, the Chippewas (5-4, 4-0 MAC) can claim the MAC West title for the second year in a row and earn a birth in the MAC Championship game.

Western Michigan (3-6, 2-3), ironically the preseason favorite in the MAC West, will be trying to salvage some pride as their season has turned into a huge disappointment already.

Central Michigan has loaded their entire offense onto the back of quarterback
Dan LaFevour this season, and the redshirt sophomore has responded with
an MVP-type year. LaFevour throws it a lot (2,312 yards), with good accuracy
(67.1 percent, 18 TDs, only 7 interceptions).

The Chippewas offense, ranked 29th in the country, averages 420 yards and 32.2 points per game (46.5 in their 4 MAC games) and is a large reason why Central Michigan is a hot team right now, covering ATS in four of the past five weeks as well as 6-1-1 O/U.

On the other hand, Western Michigan has had trouble holding on to the football on offense all season. In last weeks 19-2 loss to Eastern Michigan, the Broncos turned it over six times (3 interceptions, 3 fumbles) and continue to turn the ball over with gusto to the tune of 15 interceptions and 12 lost fumbles on the season.

They havent even named their starting quarterback for the game yet (either Tim Heller or Thomas Peregrin), so that should tell you all you need to know about the state of the Broncos offense. Western Michigan has been a sports betting nightmare because of their struggles, covering ATS just once (1-7) since the season opener, and going 3-6 O/U.

On defense, neither team is really good enough to make too much impact. Western Michigan is 94th and averages giving up nearly as much on the ground (199.8 yards) as they do in the air (229.6 yards).

Central Michigan has even less defense, as far as numbers go, ranking 115th overall and are just getting gouged in the pass defense at 300.1 yards per game.

Due to potential inclimate weather, most offshore
sportsbooks aren’t offering a number for a total. At time of print,
only Bookmaker is offering a total, with 62 O/U.

With a 10-day layoff dont expect injuries do play too much of a role in this game at the start. But with 10 days of film study, I would expect a few tricks, gadgets or fakes to try and take advantage of a newly discovered opportunity. The intangibles in this game could be scary for a sports bettor, because like most games in a heated rivalry, momentum swings can happen in Tuesdays game in an instant.

As far as the historical betting trends, 4-of-5 is a consistent theme. Western Michigan has covered ATS in four of their last five games verses Central Michigan, and hasnt lost to Chippewas straight up in Kalamazoo since back in 1993. Four of the last five have also gone under the total in the rivalry.

The game started as a +3 for Western Michigan, with early betting on the home underdog moving it down to +2.5. The over/under in Las Vegas opened at 67, but is down to 62 at most online bookies, so offense is the perceived public favorite on this one too.

Badger’s Pick: I know the game is at Western Michigan, and a home-dog is great value and usually a sure bet, that is the only reason I can think of why you would like the Broncos in this one. Central Michigan and LaFevour are just too good offensively and the Chippewas cover this one going away.