Miami-OH Vs. Northern Illinois Odds, Picks, Predictions (11/15/22)

In a matchup of two teams who have disappointed so far at this point of the season, this Wednesday night MACtion showdown features the Northern Illinois Huskies hosting the Miami-OH Redhawks. While the season is just about over for Northern Illinois, Miami-OH still has something to play for as they can win out the last two weeks of the season to get to a bowl game.

Miami-OH Vs. Northern Illinois Odds

Miami-OH opened up at +2.5 and quickly saw that number shoot down to as low as +1.5 on most books. This comes as little surprise as they have all the motivation in this one as NIU’s postseason hopes cling on to an extra team being needed to fill a bowl gap.

As for the total, the under has gained some massive steam as it went from the opening number of 50.5, all the way to 46. With a run heavy script on deck, the under has attracted most bettors as they expect a bleeding clock and limited scoring between two anemic passing offenses.

Miami-OH Vs. Northern Illinois Prediction & Pick

The Pick: Miami-OH +2

Miami OH was one of my early future picks to win the MAC and it has been about as painful as it could get as I watched that future ticket burn in flames. 

While sitting at 4-6 (2-4 conf), Miami OH has had a lead in nine of their ten games this season. This is in large part of their offense, a unit that has been unlucky and struggled mightily at spurts. Never being able to put together a complete performance, this has led to constant let downs as their postseason hopes are in jeopardy. 

While the offense comes into this one slightly out matched, they do possess advantages in some key metrics that can swing this into their favor. Mainly in Off Finishing Drives, as NIU is one of the worst units in football in limiting opposing scoring past the 40. Should they benefit from their advantage in explosiveness during their drives, Miami-OH will be well positioned to put points on the board as they near the endzone.

Miami-OH Vs. Northern Illinois Key Matchups

Can Miami-OH defense lead them to victory once again? Has quarterback Brett Gabbert figured it out just in time for a bowl berth?

Quarterback Depth vs Miami-OH Defense

It’s never easy for a unit to find sustained success when their starting quarterback goes down with an injury or plays well below expected. It’s especially never easy should their second stringer follow suit. Enter Nevan Cremascoli, NIU’s third string quarterback who got the starting nod in their last game against WMU. He also shared duties under center with Justin Lynch.

Nevan put together an underwhelming performance in their victory, throwing for 133 yards, one touchdown, and one interception. While Lynch was limited with only one passing attempt, he was used more on the ground as he finished with 83 rushing yards and the game winning touchdown.

While it’s uncertain if Lynch will get more playing time under center for his rushing performance, we can heavily expect the offense to revolve around the run in a conservative approach in this matchup.

Brett Gabbert vs Northern Illinois Secondary

It has been a roller coaster of a season for Gabbert and company with the offense severely disappointing at times in what could have been a successful season for the Redhawks. Their hopes remain alive on the shoulders of Gabbert who finished his last game out with 244 yards in the air as well as three touchdowns in a losing effort to Ohio.

He gets another chance to shine once again and keep their postseason hopes alive as NIU boasts one of the worst defenses in football. Well below average in Def Finishing Drives, Success Rate, and Explosiveness, Miami-OH should be able to move the ball at will against them.

Verdict

It won’t be pretty but expect the motivated Redhawks to get the job done as the slight underdog in a must win situation to keep their bowl aspirations alive. While you can take them on the moneyline, I will back them on the points at +2 for a little extra cushion should they blow a late lead once again.

Kody is a sports betting writer here at Lineups. He specializes in college sports as well as the NFL and NBA. He won’t quit believing in the Lions Super Bowl chances even when they are eliminated.

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