Early November is a mixed bag of emotions. On one hand, we get one of the most exhilarating things to happen to college football — midweek MACtion. When there’s not much else going on a Tuesday or Wednesday night, you can turn to the Mid-American Conference to be a source of entertainment. On the other hand, midweek football is the indicator that the college football season is approaching its end.
I must admit, I am a MACtion mega fan. In 2020, when it was announced that the MAC conference would not have a football season due to the pandemic, I truly shed some tears. But then when it was announced that a season would be played after all, it was like Christmas morning.
My love for the Mid-American Conference goes way back to my poker days. While the world was focused on the SEC, Big 12, and other Power Five conferences, I was making bank on the MAC. The most profitable games often are the ones being overlooked. The word is out, however, and now being a #MACtion fan is a trend. Just remember who started it.
Here are some trends to note before things kick off Tuesday night.
Western Michigan Broncos
Under head coach Tim Lester, now in his fifth year, the Broncos have not had a winning ATS season. Since 2017, WMU is 22-28-2 ATS overall and 14-19-1 ATS in conference, including 1-2-1 ATS in conference this season.
During the same time span, WMU is 29-23 overall and 20-14 in conference.
The Broncos last won the MAC title in 2016.
This season, WMU pulled the 14.5-point underdog upset over Pitt, winning 44-41, generating 517 yards of total offense and controlling the time of possession.
WMU is 20-14 to the over in conferences games with Lester as head coach.
The Rockets last won the MAC title in 2017.
Toledo has posted an 18-21 ATS record and 11-15 ATS in conference since winning the title.
This season, Toledo is ranked No. 3 in the country in opponent offensive touchdowns allowed, behind only Georgia and Penn State.
Toledo leads the nation with the fewest giveaways per game.
Toledo is 18-24-1 to the under in conference under head coach Jason Candle and 0-4 to the under this season.
Ball State Cardinals
From 2016-19, the Cardinals had a 15-33 record, but in 2020 they finished 7-1 (5-1 in conference), won the MAC title and defeated No. 19 San Jose State in the Arizona Bowl.
This season, Ball State is 5-3 ATS and 4-3 ATS in conference.
Central Michigan Chippewas
In two seasons with head coach Jim McElwain, CMU is 16-12 ATS overall and 11-8 ATS in conference.
CMU is 1-3 ATS in conference this season.
CMU is 1-3 to the under in conference this season.
Eastern Michigan Eagles
Under head coach Chris Creighton, the Eagles are 17-29 SU on the road.
The Eagles are 15-46 SU as an underdog under Creighton.
During that same time, EMU is 35-25-1 ATS as an underdog.
EMU is the least penalized team in the country, averaging 3.4 penalties per game for an average of 30 yards.
Northern Illinois Huskies
Under head coach Thomas Hammock (third season), the Huskies are 14-11 ATS, 9-9 ATS in conference and 10-6-1 in conference as underdogs.
NIU posted a 0-6 season last year. The Huskies are 6-2 this season, 4-0 in conference and lead the MAC West.
NIU is top 12 in the nation in rushing yards per game and fifth for rushing play percentage behind Army, Air Force, Navy, and Minnesota.
Since 2017, Ohio has a 19-12 conference record.
All 12 losses have been by seven points or fewer, and 10 of those 12 have been by three points or fewer.
During that same time, Ohio is 8-6 ATS as an underdog.
Ohio is 0-4 to the under in conference this season.
Kent State Golden Flashes
Last year’s 69-35 win over Akron tied the single-game record for most points scored and total yards (750).
After a 2-10 season in 2018, Kent State is 14-11 since.
Kent State is top 10 in the FBS in takeaways and first in the MAC for interceptions.
Miami has ranked 84th or worse in total offense in the last four seasons.
The RedHawks won the MAC title in 2019.
Miami is top 20 for both opponent red-zone scoring attempts and opponent red-zone scores.
Miami is 5-11 to the under in conference since 2019 and 1-3 this season.
The Bulls have won four straight regular-season finales SU and ATS. They face Ball State on Nov. 23 to close the season.
Buffalo nearly upset Coastal Carolina in Week 3, losing 28-25 as a 14-point underdog and then nearly was upset by Old Dominion the following week, winning 35-34 as a 13-point favorite.
The Bulls finished last season 6-1, losing to Ball State in the MAC title game as 13-point favorites.
Buffalo ranks first in the conference in points scored, averaging 33.7 points per game.
Buffalo is top 10 in the FBS for quarterback sacks and first in the MAC.
Since winning its last two regular season MAC games in 2017, Akron is 4-22 SU and 7-19 ATS in conference games.
Akron’s season win total was 2.5 and it is currently 2-6 heading into Week 10.
Akron is ranked last in the conference in points scored, averaging 19.9 points per game.
Bowling Green Falcons
Bowling Green is tied in the FBS for top field-goal percentage with a 100 percent conversion rate.
After finishing 0-5 last season, Bowling Green is 3-6 this year, surpassing its season win total of 1.5.
Bowling Green is 4-1 to the over in conference games this season.
Since the 2020 season, Bowling Green is 8-5 ATS as an underdog.
Collectively last season, overs went 36-30. The year before: 82-69-2. If you straight bet the over in every game in the last two seasons, you would have made a profit.
However, MAC conference games are 20-30 to the under this season.
The only MAC team posting a winning over record this season is Bowling Green at 4-1.
One last bit of advice, have fun with it. The MAC can be wild, so don’t go putting your entire bankroll on one bet. Crazy things happen.
Rules for betting #MACtion
1️⃣ Forget what you think you know about football.
2️⃣ Whatever you think will happen, opposite is more likely.
3️⃣ Each quarter is a rollercoaster ride.
4️⃣ You must have big cojones to bet MAC.
5️⃣ No lead is safe.
🔑 most important: Have fun with it!
— Pamela Maldonado (@pamelam35) November 2, 2021