7:05 pm
November 3

Northern Illinois @ Kent State

Who will WIN this matchup?

Northern Illinois Huskies (6-2)

@ Kent State Golden Flashes (4-4)


Current odds:

Northern Illinois Huskies: (+159)

Kent State Golden Flashes: (-195)


The line for this game is Kent State by 3.5 points.

Northern Illinois comes into the game as the lone unbeaten team in the MAC at 4-0 and 6-2 overall and own the outright lead in the MAC Western Division. The Huskies are averaging 30.5 points per game in MAC play. Their formula has been a strong running game (249 yards per game, tops in MAC play) and stopping the run (131 yards allowed, third in the MAC).

The rushing attack is led by Jay Ducker and Antario Brown, who combine for over 200 yards a game as a rushing tandem. Former Michigan State quarterback Rocky Lombardi handles the passing duties. Lombardi threw for 348 yards and a trio of scores in the 39-38 triumph over Central Michigan last time out. Trayvon Rudolph and Tyrice Richie are the two main receivers, each topped 140 yards against the Chips. Lombardi can also extend plays with his legs, rushing the ball for over 100 yards in MAC play this year with a. pair of scores.

Defensively, Northern Illinois likes to bring pressure and are led by CJ Brown and Dillon Thomas, who each average about seven stops a game.

The Flashes come into the game at 4-4 overall and 3-1 in the Mid-American Conference’s East Division and currently tied with Miami for the top spot in the East. They are coming off a 34-27 victory over the Ohio Bobcats down in Athens on October 23rd.

Dustin Crum through for 257 and a score and ran for 93 more and another score in the victory. Crum’s favorite target was Dante Cephas who caught nine balls for 103 yards and the opening score of the game. Crum earned MAC East Offensive Player of the Week for his efforts.

The defense held Ohio to over 100 rushing yards below their conference average in the game. Manny Lawrence-Burke and Nico Bolden led the charge with 14 and 12 stops, respectively. Manny took home MAC East Defensive Player of the Week honors by adding a tackle-for-loss and forced fumble to his defensive resume. Lawrence-Burke leads the team and sits third in MAC play with 42 stops and an average of 10.5 per game.

In MAC play, the Golden Flashes own the top scoring offense at 35 points per game. They have achieved that through incredible balance, rushing for 203 yards/MAC game and throwing for an average of 259. The rushing game has been a triumvirate of Marquez Cooper (77 yards/game), Dustin Crum (62.5 yards/game) and Xavier Williams (45 yard/game).

This is just the third time in the last 12 years that the two teams have met at Dix Stadium and the first time that Coach Lewis and his staff will face the Huskies. Kent State is looking to snap a 10-game slide against NIU with their last win coming in a 44-34 win in Kent back in 2001.


StreakSmarter Pick
Northern Illinois Huskies