The Bowling Green Falcons hit the road on Wednesday, November 11 to take on the Western Michigan Broncos. Both teams reside atop their respective divisions in the MAC, so this is one of the most anticipated matchups in the conference this season. The Broncos have won each of the last four meetings in this series, including a 26-14 road win last year.
Bowling Green (7-2, 5-0 MAC) won its sixth straight game last Wednesday in a 62-24 beat down of Ohio at home. Quarterback Matt Johnson continued his superb season, completing 26 of 35 passes for 365 yards and four touchdowns in the win.
Western Michigan (6-3, 5-0 MAC) won its fifth straight with a 54-7 blowout victory over Ball State last Thursday. The Broncos racked up 711 yards of total offense in the win with 358 rushing and 353 passing in a balanced attack.
Kickoff inside Waldo Stadium is scheduled for 8:00 EST Wednesday night with ESPN 2 providing the television coverage. Taking a look at the lines in Las Vegas, I find Bowling Green listed as a 3-point favorite over Western Michigan with a total set of 75.5 points.
This is a Western Michigan team that I picked to win the MAC this season with all they had returning. They had 16 starters back and were a loss to NIU in the season finale away from playing in the title game last year. So far, they haven’t disappointed this season, going 5-0 within the conference and needing to keep winning to make sure that they aren’t left out this season.
Offensively, the Broncos have been explosive, averaging 38.0 points, 485.8 yards per game and 6.9 per play against opposing defenses that allow 30.9 points, 425 yards per game and 6.1 per play. Zach Terrell is completing nearly 70 percent of his passes for 2,369 yards with 23 touchdowns and six interceptions this season.
Bowling Green also has an explosive offense, but the difference in this game is going to be defense. Western Michigan is much better on that side of the ball, giving up 389.2 yards per game. Bowling Green is allowing 434.2 yards per game this season for comparison’s sake. I simply look for the Broncos to get more stops in this one and for that to be the difference.
Both teams are coming off blowout wins last week. Western Michigan beat Ball State 54-7, while Bowling Green thumped Ohio 62-24. The difference is that the Broncos’ game was actually a blowout, while the Falcons’ game was not. WMU outgained Ball State 711-152 for the game, or by a ridiculous 559 total yards. Bowling Green only outgained Ohio 581-543, or by 38 total yards. That game against the Bobcats was much closer than the final score showed.
It has been a long string of dominance for the Broncos, who have won five straight coming into this one dating back to their 41-39 home win over Central Michigan. They went on to beat Ohio 49-14 on the road while outgaining them by 213 yards, beat Miami Ohio 35-13 at home, beat Eastern Michigan 58-28 on the road, and beat Ball State 54-7 at home. The only losses the Broncos have suffered this year have coming against three of the better teams in the country in Michigan State, Georgia Southern and Ohio State.
Western Michigan has owned Bowling Green in recent years, going 4-0 SU & 4-0 ATS in the last four meetings. The Broncos topped the Falcons 26-14 on the road last year while outgaining them 361-274.
Western Michigan has owned Bowling Green in recent years, going 4-0 SU & 4-0 ATS in the last four meetings. The Broncos topped the Falcons 26-14 on the road last year while outgaining them 361-274. Terrell threw two touchdown passes while Javion Franklin rushed for 149 yards and a score in the win. The Broncos held the Falcons to just 274 total yards and 14 first downs. Their better defense will be the difference in this game as well.
Western Michigan is 9-1 ATS as an underdog over the last two seasons. The Broncos are 10-1 ATS after gaining 6.25 or more yards per play in their previous game over the last two years. Western Michigan is 9-1 ATS vs. poor pass defenses that allow a completion percentage of 58% or worse over the last two seasons. The Broncos are 9-1 ATS in their last 10 games after scoring more than 40 points in their previous game.