Eastern Michigan has been one of the more profitable teams in the MAC in recent years, especially as an underdog.
Last season, the Eagles went 5-1 in such role, including a 4-1 record as a dog on the road. Three of those wins were against conference opponents.
Why does this matter for their win total?
Because EMU’s toughest opponents this season are all on the road, and if they can maintain that type of play away from home, then their chances of going over their win total are high.
Right now, college football betting odds on BetMGM have that number at 7.5.
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Games to like
The Eagles open the season at home against MEAC member Howard and then host an independent squad in UMass in Week 3. They should be able to chalk both of these up as wins before hitting the road for back-to-back weeks against Jacksonville State and Central Michigan. These should also both be wins, setting up the Eagles for a 4-1 start and already halfway to eight victories.
Next comes a short two-game home stretch versus Ball State and Kent State. These were two of the road underdog wins that the Eagles secured last season but should be favorites in 2023 and are likely to triumph.
EMU hosts two of the lower-echelon teams in the league in the final five weeks of the season — an Oct. 28 matchup with Western Michigan and a Nov. 14 matchup with Akron — both should fall the Eagles’ way.
Games not to like
EMU’s first road trip and big test of the season comes in Week 2 against Minnesota. It’s hard to assume that the Eagles will win this game, but they have proved successful against Power 5 programs recently, going 3-2 in the past five years. It was mentioned earlier how good they are on the road as underdogs, but it’d be a stretch to expect them to pull off an upset here.
There are three other games on the schedule that the Eagles may fly into some trouble. Each is on the road.
The first is an Oct. 21 visit to Northern Illinois, where if the Huskies can return to its 2021 version like it’s expected, might pose some troubles for EMU. Following that is a Wednesday night trip to Toledo on Oct. 8, which makes Eastern Michigan’s win probability less likely with the Rockets coming off a bye. This game should have the potential to have huge MAC West implications.
To cap the regular season, the Eagles will head to Buffalo which looks like a toss-up right now.
With its extremely light home schedule, EMU should have no problem winning at least five games at home with a strong chance of winning all six. Obviously, that means they’ll only need to win two games away contests to hit the over 7.5 wins.
Considering how well coach Chris Creighton has had his team playing on the road the past few seasons, I like EMU to go over this number and surpass their projected win total for the third year in a row.
The odds for the over 7.5 is at +115, a change from -120 a month ago. The juice could easily start to shift back in the opposite direction, so perhaps you could get this bet at a discount right now.