Go Daddy.com Bowl – Ladd-Peebles Stadium in Mobile, Alabama
Sunday, January 4, 2015 @ 9:00 PM EST (ESPN)
Toledo Rockets (8-4, Mid-American) vs Arkansas State Red Wolves (7-5, Sun Belt)
Current Line: Toledo -3.5, O/U: 67.0
Toledo Rockets (Head Coach Matt Campbell): Aside from the NCAA Championship Game, this is college football's 2014 bowl game swan-song. The Rockets played good ball for the most of the season, finishing second in its conference. They only two bad games played that came against #16 Missouri and a very good Cincinnati team. This is the fifth year in a row that the Rockets have qualified for a postseason bowl game.
The Rockets, using equally strong running and passing games, were able to amass 486.3 YPG in offense. The best player on offense was Soph RB Kareem Hunt with 1,360 yards rushing and 11 TDs. He was joined in the backfield by Soph QB Logan Woodside who came through with 2,087 yards passing and 9 TDs. The defense played well in spurts, but still gave up just over 400 YPG, which created problems for the team in close games.
Toledo is 9-0 under vs. good offensive teams – scoring 31 or more points/game over the last 3 seasons. Toledo is 26-13 ATS as a favorite of 3.5 to 10 points since 1992.
Arkansas State Red Wolves (Head Coach ): Playing a weak schedule that included only three other bowl teams, the Red Wolves managed to be the best of an average lot. They started the season off with back-to-back losses to Tennessee and Miami Fla before hitting a nice stretch where they won five of six games. By the end of the regular season, they were struggling again.
He is not a recognized name within the NCAA, but starting QB Fredi Knighten put up some big-time numbers. He threw for 2,874 yards and 19 TDs and added 775 yards and 11 TDs rushing. RB Michael Gordon proved to be reliable in the backfield where he gained 1,064 yards and 13 TDs from the line of scrimmage. As for the defense, they did a good job by causing 27 turnovers and giving the offense plenty of opportunities to put points on the board.
Arkansas State is 8-1 ATS when playing against a team with a winning record over the last 2 seasons. Arkansas State is 0-11 ATS after gaining 300 or more rushing yards last game since 1992.
Major Injuries: None to Report
Preview: It has been a long and exciting NCAA 2014 football season. It will be fun to sit back and evaluate the new playoff scheme and determine its effect on the postseason. For these two teams, they must be happy to have the honor of closing out the bowl season. The Red Wolves have to be viewed with a bit of skepticism given the weakness of its schedule. The Rockets fared well versus stronger competition and have the look of a favorite in this one. It will be fun to watch Knighten who takes to the public stage to display his wares. For football fans, it's time to get ready for the big game. Toledo has more talent and will get the straight-up win.