Akron vs. Buffalo Prediction, Game Preview

    Akron vs. Buffalo prediction and game preview. Projecting who will win Thursday night's MAC battle between the Zips and Bulls.

    October 24, 2016

    Akron vs. Buffalo prediction and game preview. Projecting who will win Thursday night’s MAC battle between the Zips and Bulls.


    Akron vs. Buffalo Game Preview

    When: Thursday, Oct. 27 – 7:30 p.m. ET
    Where: UB Stadium, Buffalo.
    TV Broadcast: ESPN3

    Akron quarterback Thomas Woodson missed three straight games due to injury, but he was back under center Saturday and looked healthy. He finished 27-of-40 for 338 yards and two touchdowns, helping the Zips beat Ball State, 35-25. They’re tied with Ohio atop the MAC East at 3-1 in conference play.

    Buffalo is 2 1/2 games off that pace and is winless in conference action. The 1-6 Bulls have dropped four straight and were routed, 44-7, by Northern Illinois last week. One of the nation’s worst offenses committed four more turnovers and failed to get to 400 yards for the fifth time in six games against FBS competition.

    What To Know About Akron

    Akron’s offense was held to fewer than 300 yards in each of the previous two games before Woodson returned Saturday to provide a spark. The Zips finished with 529 yards, as Van Edwards added 112 and a touchdown on the ground. Woodson being healthy is a dangerous thing for Buffalo.

    The defense leaves plenty to be desired, though. It ranks 11th in the MAC in yards allowed per game after letting Ball State amass 443. The Zips also have allowed over 600 yards on the ground over their last two games.

    What To Know About Buffalo

    The Bulls continue to struggle. They’ve lost nine of their last 10 games dating back to last season and are getting inconsistent play from quarterback Tyree Jackson. The redshirt freshman tossed four interceptions in last week’s loss to Northern Illinois and rushed for only five yards while attempting 41 passes because of an big early deficit.

    Buffalo allowed 511 yards, with 312 of them coming on the ground. Akron might have some fun running the ball Thursday, as the Bulls have the nation’s second-worst rush defense allowing 289.1 yards on the ground per game.

    Advantages

    Offense: Akron – Woodson is a threat to run the ball as well.

    Defense: Akron – The Zips’ unit has had it’s issues, too, but nothing like what Buffalo has gone through with its run defense.

    Special Teams: Akron – JoJo Natson is one of the MAC’s most dangerous returners.

    Coaching: Akron – Terry Bowden has the Zips competing for a MAC East title.

    Intangibles: Buffalo – The Bulls have won four straight home matchups with the Zips.

    Matchup To Watch

    Woodson vs. Buffalo’s defense

    Not just Woodson’s arm, but his ability to run should come into play, too. With the Bulls struggling to stop the run, Bowden might elect to keep the ball in Woodson’s hands as much as possible, including plenty of designed runs.

    Betting Odds

    Spread: Akron -14.5
    Over/Under: No Line as of post

    Akron vs. Buffalo Prediction

    Woodson accounts for four total touchdowns while leading Akron to 575 yards of total offense in a rather easy road win over the Bulls.

    Akron vs. Buffalo final score prediction: Akron 35, Buffalo 17

    MORE: 1-128 College Football Rankings – Week 9

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