Ball St. Cardinals vs. Central Michigan Chippewas
The Central Michigan Chippewas look to pick up a conference victory against the Ball State Cardinals Saturday. The Chippewas were upset by Eastern Michigan 35-28 in week seven while the Cardinals knocked off Ohio 23-20. The Cardinals are -1 point favorites over the Chippewas with an over/under point total set at 58.
Central Michigan misses former quarterback Dan LeFevor but were expected to take down Eastern Michigan regardless of who was calling the signals. However, the offense was the only unit that came through with 449 yards and 30 first downs. The Chippewas never reached the 100 yard plateau, finishing with 98 yards with Tim Phillips totaling 54 yards on nine totes representing the extent of their success. The offense was one dimensional but the passing of quarterback Ryan Radcliff more than picked up the slack. Radcliff completed 33 of 50 for 351 yards with three touchdowns and an interceptions. Radcliff hit eight different receivers with the trio of Cody Wilson, David Blackburn and Titus Davis combining for 24 receptions for 265 yards and a pair of touchdowns. As good as the offense was the defense had issues stopping the ground game of Eastern Michigan who ran for 350 yards and an impressive seven yard average.
Through seven games all we know about Ball State is they have a winning record but where they stand in the MAC is a mystery. Whether this team is a factor in the conference remains to be seen but they did knock off an Ohio squad that was thought to be a factor. The Cardinals had an ordinary day on the offensive side of the football with 372 yards. Ball State certainly didn’t light up the scoreboard but made plays at key times as indicated by the 12 0f 20 performance on third down conversions. The rushing attack didn’t standout but was moderately successful with Jahwan Edwards and his 123 yards leading the team to 166 yards and four yards per shot. The passing game was also short an almost an extension of the rushing attack. Keith Wenning had some issues hooking up with his receiving corps and had even more problems getting the ball downfield. The defense bent but didn’t break, giving up 413 yards but recovered a fumble and intercepted a pair of passes. The punt coverage team allowed a 25 yard return but otherwise limited the big plays.
The Chippewas will rely on the passing of Radcliff and hope for some type of success on the ground to eat some clock and keep a suspect defense on the sideline. Ball State is just the opposite and can run a little and hope Wenning gets something going in the air while also protecting a vulnerable defense. Probably not a great game to watch but I like the better running team.
Ball St. Cardinals -1 Central Michigan Chippewas