Akron at Toledo
This Tuesday the Toledo Rockets will host the Akron Zips in what will be the final regular season game for both teams. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:00 EST at the Glass Bowl and will be televised nationally on ESPN2. Oddsmakers have listed Toledo as a 19-point home favorite with the total set at 57.5 points.
Why Akron Will Cover:
It has been an extremely difficult season for the Zips, who dropped to 1-10 overall and 0-7 inside the MAC with a 14-22 loss at home to Massachusetts. The only win on the season came against a non-FBS opponent in Morgan St (66-6). While the results haven’t been what they hoped for, Akron has continued to play hard despite the fact that they know they have no chance of making it to a bowl game.
The Zips are a respectable 5-6 ATS this season and appear to be showing some good value in their matchup against Toledo. Akron is a very profitable 4-1 ATS away from home and seem to play their best against the top teams in the conference. Three of their four losses against teams who currently have a winning record in the MAC have come by 14-points or less, which includes a 9-point loss at Kent State, who is a perfect 7-0 in conference play.
This also appears to be a very strong matchup for the Zips. Akron comes into this game with the 14th ranked passing offense in the nation, averaging just over 317.0 ypg through the air. You would expect them to have all kinds of success throwing the ball against Toledo’s 115th ranked pass defense (298.8 ypg). This should allow Akron to keep it close and also leaves open the door for a backdoor cover if they struggle to keep up with the Rockets early.
Why Toledo Will Cover:
The Rockets come in off a disappointing 24-31 loss at Northern Illinois, which ruined any hopes of winning the West and playing in the MAC Championship Game. With an overall record of 8-3 the Rockets will be headed to their third straight bowl game no matter the outcome of their game against Akron.
While it may appear that Toledo has nothing to play for in this game, I think there’s a good chance they will. The Rockets need to win this game to have a chance at finishing the season with 10 wins. That’s a very important mark for a team like Toledo out of a small conference, especially after finishing last year with 9 wins. The Rockets will also want to impress the bowl selectors.
It’s also the final home game for the seniors on this team and they are going to want to finish their career with a big victory at home. Last year the Rockets went into their home finale as a 14-point favorite against Ball State and ended up winning 45-28. Toledo is 22-2 straight up in their final home game and have covered the spread in this spot each of the past three seasons.
While these two teams haven’t played since 2006. The Rockets are an impressive 5-1 ATS over the last six meetings between these two schools. Toledo is also a solid 5-2-1 ATS in their last 8 home games vs a team with a losing road record.