Ball State Cardinals vs. Akron Zips Predictions, Odds, Picks

Nov. 2, 2021
Dan Dobish
VI Betting Expert

The Ball State Cardinals (4-4, 2-2 MAC) travel to meet the Akron Zips (2-6, 1-3) at InfoCision Stadium in Akron for a little bit of MACtion Tuesday night at 7:00 p.m. ET. The game will be televised on the CBS Sports Network.

Score Prediction

Ball State 34, Akron 24

Best Bets

Akron +19.5 (-110)

Ball State Cardinals vs. Akron Zips Predictions

Ball State dropped three games in a row after topping FCS Western Illinois in the opener Sept. 2. The Cardinals didn’t get their first win against an FBS team until shocking Army in Muncie as 10-point underdogs, winning 28-16. They held the Black Knights to a respectable 213 rushing yards per game on the ground, and it might have been an even larger win if not for nine penalties.

That win over Army spurred the Cardinals on, as they rattled off three consecutive victories, including a convincing 45-20 victory in Kalamazoo against Western Michigan as 13.5-point underdogs. Apparently, the Cards relish the role of double-digit ‘dog. They topped Eastern Michigan in Ypsilanti as a one-point favorite Oct. 16, but suffered a 24-17 loss at home to Miami (Ohio) as 3.5-point favorites.

As far as Akron is concerned, they started out 1-4 SU/ATS, including a 59-7 blasting at Ohio State. Hey, they did have a 7-0 lead in that game. Anyway, the only win in that span was against FCS Bryant, and the Zips didn’t earn their first win against an FBS foe until Oct. 9 when they went to Doyt Perry Stadium in Bowling Green for a 35-20 win as two-touchdown ‘dogs.

The Zips showed some signs of life, picking up a cover at Miami (Ohio) the following week, losing 34-21 as 20-point ‘dogs. But they were rubbed out 45-10 by visiting Buffalo in a game they were clearly outclassed. So we have two teams which have been a bit Jekyll and Hyde, or tough to figure from week to week.

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Ball State Cardinals vs. Akron Zips Betting Odds

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Ball State Cardinals vs. Akron Zips Betting Resources

  • Matchup: MAC
  • Date: Tuesday, November 2, 2021
  • Venue: InfoCision Stadium
  • Location: Akron, Ohio
  • TV-Time: CBSSN - 7:00 p.m. ET

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Ball State Cardinals Betting Analysis

Straight Up - SU, Against the Spread - ATS, Over-Under (O/U)

  • SU: 4-4
  • ATS: 3-5
  • O/U: 3-5
  • ATS - Home: 1-3
  • ATS - Away: 2-2

The Cardinals opened the season 0-4 ATS, followed that up with a 3-0 ATS run, and then failed to cover against the RedHawks at home. Is another cold streak against the number coming up?

Ball State’s offense has been tremendous on the road inside the league so far, averaging 41.5 PPG in two MAC road games at Western Michigan and Eastern Michigan. The OVER connected in both outings, and they also covered the spread.

Ball State isn’t very good on offense, going for just 335.0 total yards per game, ranking 110th in the nation, while rushing for 116.4 yards per contest, good for just 105th overall. The 24.5 PPG is also just 92nd overall.

Defensively, the Cardinals are allowing 394.5 total yards per game to rank 82nd, which is also their rank in passing yards per game allowed at 236.1. Ball State is yielding 27.9 PPG, so Akron should be able to do some things.

Akron Zips Betting Analysis

Straight Up - SU, Against the Spread - ATS, Over-Under (O/U)

  • SU: 2-6
  • ATS: 3-5
  • O/U: 4-4
  • ATS - Home: 1-3
  • ATS - Away: 2-2

The Zips haven’t produced a win against an FBS team at home this season. Akron was romped 45-24 against Temple on Sept. 11, 34-17 against Ohio on Oct. 2 and 45-10 against Buffalo last Saturday. That’s three losses to FBS teams at InfoCision by least 17 points. The last win for the Zips at home against a league team came Dec. 5, 2020 in a 31-3 beatdown of Bowling Green.

Like Ball State, Akron’s offense is nothing to get excited about. They rank 109 th in total yards, basically the same exact production as Ball State. And the Zips are just shy of 20 per game at 19.9 PPG, good for just 117th out of 130 FBS teams.

On defense, the Zips are coughing up 449.1 total yards game, and they have been gouged on the ground for 217.5 rushing yards per outing. Akron has allowed 38.9 PPG, good for just 126th, so the scoreboard operator at InfoCision might want to limber up the fingers prior to Tuesday night.

The Ball State Cardinals have won three of their last four games. (AP)

Inside the Stats - Ball State Cardinals

  • Record: 4-4
  • VI Ranking: 86
  • Points Scored: 196
  • Points Allowed: 223
  • PS/G: 24.5 (91st)
  • PA/G: 27.9 (80th)

Inside the Stats - Akron Zips

  • Record: 2-6
  • VI Ranking: 117
  • Points Scored: 159
  • Points Allowed: 311
  • PS/G: 19.9 (117th)
  • PA/G: 38.9 (126th)

Key Players to Watch

  • BALL: Carson Steele - RB (84 carries, 428 yards, 5 TD)
  • BALL: Yo'Heinz Tyler - WR (29 catches, 310 yards, 4 TD)
  • AKR: Konata Mumpfield - WR (41 catchhes, 495 yards, 6 TD)
  • AKR: Charles Amankwaa - DB (30 tackles, 3 INT, 2 PD)

Ball State Cardinals vs. Akron Zips Betting Conclusion

This is actually the first meeting between these teams since a 31-3 win by Akron on Oct. 7, 2017 at home, covering a 4.5-point number. While Ball State has won four of the past six meetings overall, the Zips have covered three of the past five. However, since the teams haven’t met in over four calendar years, the trends can mostly be avoided.

The UNDER has hit in each of the past two despite the fact Akron is averaging 33.0 PPG in those outings. Akron has also 21 or more points in six straight meetings with Ball State. Look for plenty of points in this one for both teams, as the offenses might be very good, but the defenses are even worse, allowing for some room to move.

Ball State Cardinals vs. Akron Zips Betting Trends

  • Ball State has won three of its last four games.
  • Akron has lost four of its last five games.
  • Akron has failed to cover the spread in 13 of its last 15 home games.
  • Akron has gone UNDER the point total in four of its last six games.