BUFFALO BULLS (7-2)
at TOLEDO ROCKETS (6-3)
Kickoff: Tuesday, 7:30 p.m. ET
Line: Toledo -4
Buffalo attempts to go 6-0 in the Mid-American Conference on Tuesday night with a visit to Toledo, which is trying to keep pace with Ball State and Northern Illinois in the West division of the conference.
The Bulls are coming off a big 30-3 win over Ohio last week and are winners of their past seven games, both SU and ATS, after starting the season 0-2. They have absolutely dominated the MAC this season, winning each of their five games by at least 20 points. Last week they were only 4.5-point favorites at home against the Bobcats, but their 252 rushing yards and solid defense shut them down. The Rockets have also had a very successful season in the MAC, going 4-1 SU and ATS up to this point. Their only defeat in conference came at the hands of 9-1 Ball State by a score of 31-24. Toledo defeated Eastern Michigan 55-16 in its most recent game thanks to an impressive 729 yards of offense. Since 1992, these two programs have met only four times, with Toledo having a 3-1 record SU, but going only 1-3 ATS. In last season’s matchup, Toledo won 25-20 on the road as 7-point favorites thanks to 241 rushing yards. Both teams committed two turnovers in the game and the overall offensive numbers were close (Toledo 412 total yards, Buffalo 372 total yards). The Over is 2-1 in the past three matchups, but the Under has gone 12-3 in the Rockets’ past 15 games. Although Buffalo has done very well this season, it is a dreadful 3-16 SU in its past 19 away games.
Which team will stay unbeaten in the MAC? For the answer, connect to College Football Best Bets for all the StatFox Experts picks throughout the 2013 regular season and bowl season. The four experts are a combined 53% ATS (98-87-7) in college football Best Bets for the season, led by StatFox Dave who is 59% ATS (31-22-2) in Best Bets this season, including 69% ATS (18-8-1) during a run of seven straight weeks of .500 or better. StatFox Brian is also 59% ATS (27-19-1) in college football Best Bets this year, including a 64% ATS (16-9) surge over the past five weeks. Last week he picked Virginia Tech to win straight up at Miami, and Florida State to win 52-3 over Wake Forest in a game the 'Noles won 59-3.
The Bulls have been great in conference this season and should give a lot of credit to QB Joe Licata (1,738 yards, 16 TD, 5 INT) for their success. Licata has nine touchdowns to only one interception in conference play, but has averaged only 193.8 passing YPG. In Buffalo’s victory over Ohio, Licata was 13-for-22 (59.1%) for 169 yards and two touchdowns (one interception). His ability to not turn the ball over has been a major factor in the team’s 7-game winning streak. While Licata deserves much of the credit this season, the Bulls would not be doing this well without the performance from HB Branden Oliver, who has 1,123 rushing yards (5.2 YPC) with 11 touchdowns this season. He has really been a workhorse over the past three games, averaging 36 attempts per game and gaining an average of 216.7 YPG on the ground. WR Alex Neutz has impressed at receiver this season with 707 yards on 43 catches (16.4 avg.) and has added nine touchdowns. He has caught a touchdown in 8-of-9 games this season. LB Khalil Mack (59 tackles, 7.5 sacks, 3 INT, 2 TD) could be an early pick in next year’s NFL draft, but for now he is helping the Bulls hold opponents to 20.7 PPG and 363.9 YPG.
Toledo has averaged 445.6 yards of offense per game this season, which includes 238.9 YPG rushing (15th in nation). HB David Fluellen (1,067 yards, 10 TD) has been the Rockets' top option on the ground, but missed his previous game with a leg injury. Early reports look promising that Fluellen will be able to play against Toledo on Tuesday. If he is not able to go, the combo of HBs Kareem Hunt (486 rush yards, 5 TD) and Damion Jones-Moore (200 rush yards, 4 TD) will be expected to carry the offense. Hunt has three straight games with 110+ yards and at least one touchdown. QB Terrance Owens (1,609 passing yards, 11 TD, 6 INT) has performed extremely well in the past two games with a combined 505 passing yards and six touchdowns with 0 INT. WRs Bernard Reedy (587 rec. yards, 4 TD) and Alonzo Russell (515 rec. yards, 5 TD) have accounted for 59.2% of the passing game this year. DE Jayrone Elliot has been spectacular this season, recording 56 tackles and seven sacks. Elliot and the rest of the Rockets’ defense has allowed 26.2 PPG and 394.4 YPG this year.