2021 MAC Championship Game odds, spread: Northern Illinois vs. Kent State picks, predictions from proven model

Written by on December 3, 2021

The Northern Illinois Huskies and Kent State Golden Flashes square off in the 2021 MAC Championship Game at Ford Field in Detroit on Saturday. The champion of the West Division, Northern Illinois (8-4) is making its eighth appearance in the championship game in the last 12 seasons. That’s the most appearances by any MAC team. Meanwhile Kent State (7-5), which clinched the East Division on the final day of the regular season, will be making just its second appearance in the title game. The Golden Flashes’ only other appearance came in 2012 when they lost to Northern Illinois. 

Kickoff is noon ET. The Golden Flashes are 3.5-point favorites in the latest Kent State vs. Northern Illinois odds from Caesars Sportsbook, while the over-under for total points scored is 74.5. Before making any Northern Illinois vs. Kent State picks or MAC Championship Game 2021 predictions, you need to see what the SportsLine Projection Model has to say.

The SportsLine Projection Model simulates every FBS college football game 10,000 times. Over the past five-plus years, the proprietary computer model has generated a stunning profit of almost $3,700 for $100 players on its top-rated college football picks against the spread. It also enters Championship Week 2021 on a 42-28 run on all top-rated college football side picks. Anyone who has followed it has seen huge returns.

Now the model has dialed in on Kent State vs. NIU and just revealed its picks and predictions. You can head to SportsLine now to see all of the model’s college football picks. Now, here are the college football odds and betting trends for NIU vs. Kent State:  

  • Kent State vs. Northern Illinois spread: Golden Flashes -3.5
  • Kent State vs. Northern Illinois over-under: 74.5 points 
  • Kent State vs. Northern Illinois money line: Golden Flashes -160, Huskies +140 
  • KSU: Kent State averages 247.2 rushing yards per game, which ranks third in the country 
  • NIU: Northern Illinois leads the country in fourth-down conversion percentage (82.6)

Featured Game | Northern Illinois Huskies vs. Kent State Golden Flashes

Why the Golden Flashes can cover

Kent State already has beaten Northern Illinois this season. On Nov. 3, the Golden Flashes had a dominant night offensively, piling up 682 total yards, including 360 on the ground, in a 52-47 victory. Kent State averaged 8.0 yards per rush, 16.1 yards per completion and 9.1 yards per play.

In addition, the Golden Flashes have one of the top rushing attacks in the country. Led by Marquez Cooper, Kent State averages 247.2 rushing yards per game, which leads the MAC and ranks third in the nation behind only Air Force and Army. Over the last two games alone, the Golden Flashes have averaged 356.5 rushing yards a game.

Why the Huskies can cover

Northern Illinois has excelled in close games this season. The Huskies have played in nine one-score games in 2021 and have more wins (seven) by eight points or fewer than any team in the country. They also have won more games (four) decided by fewer than three points than any school in the nation.

In addition, Northern Illinois is lethal once it enters the red zone. The Huskies have scored 23 touchdowns and 17 field goals on 43 drives that have reached the red zone. The 93.0 percent conversion rate leads the MAC and ranks sixth in the FBS.

How to make Kent State vs. Northern Illinois picks

SportsLine’s model is leaning under on the point total, projecting the teams to combine for 73 points. It also has an against-the-spread pick that cashes in almost 60 percent of simulations. You can see the model’s Northern Illinois vs. Kent State pick only at SportsLine.

So who wins Kent State vs. Northern Illinois? And which side is covering almost 60 percent of the time? Visit SportsLine now to see which side of the Northern Illinois vs. Kent State spread to jump on, all from the advanced model that is on a 42-28 run on top-rated picks, and find out.

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