College Football Picks, Predictions, and Previews: The Way It Oughtta Be

Eastern Michigan vs. Western Michigan 12/5/2020 College Football Picks, Prediction, and Preview

The Eastern Michigan visits Western Michigan on 12/5/2020 at 2:00PM.

Eastern Michigan and Western Michigan face off in an important game for both teams as every game in this shortened season with limited or no fans in attendance means more. Eastern Michigan has a record of 0-4 this season. Western Michigan is 4-0 this season. Both have players to meet and know.

Eastern Michigan Team Defense Preview

Eastern Michigan has had 47 defensive drives in non-garbage time minutes and they yield 6.32 plays per drive. The struggle is real. Eastern Michigan cannot find a way to get opposing offenses off the field. Three and outs are not common and if the team needs a three-and-out late in a game to get the ball back, it is just not happening.Offensives should lick their lips given their inability to stop anyone, this is one of the worst defenses in the country. The Defensive Coordinator coaching search threads on Eastern Michigan message boards are flights of fantasy. Eastern Michigan opponents pass the football 40.74% of the time.Their opponents favor running the ball as opposed airing it out.

This is a pushover defense. There is not enough push from the Defensive Line and not enough imagination from the Defensive Coordinator to cause chaos in the backfield.How effective are opposing offensive lines given what we know about their ability to force negative yardage rushing plays? Eastern Michigan can take credit for holding the offensive line of their opponent to 3.39 yards per carry. Sorry to say this about this front seven, but the best way to make an average offensive line look good is for them to face this horrid front seven. This is a team that is getting gashed too much for the tastes of their base. Linebackers are not stopping the bleeding well enough. Opponents have shown a relatively average level of explosiveness in the running game, maybe there will be a breakout rushing play against them.

This is not a disruptive Defense and they get pushed over way too easily. Perhaps they are too vanilla with playcalling. This front seven is simply unable to make an impact, something must change or else the problems will repeat. Eastern Michigan has shown themselves to be better at stopping the pass than the run this season.

Eastern Michigan Team Offense Preview

Eastern Michigan has had 45 total drives this season and they generate 5.13 plays per drive. Relatively speaking, Eastern Michigan is not a team that runs many plays per drive. The offense is either prone to faltering and struggles to notch first downs or extremely explosive, we will need to find out a bit more to get answers. Eastern Michigan has shown a capability to be explosive on first and second down to avoid third downs and has converted well (relatively) on 3rd and 4th Down situations. Passing plays make up 53.68% of their play calls.Eastern Michigan tends to pass more than other teams.

Eastern Michigan struggles with running the ball, getting zero or negative yard plays is disspiriting and the offensive line is not effectively making a good push. Poor playcalling, pre-snap adjustments or post-snap reads may be responsible and this could fall on the Quarterback, Offensive Coordinator, and Head Coach. Based on the Adjusted Line Yards metric, which measures the amount of credit that should be ascribed to the offensive line for a rushing play, they average 2.48 yards per carry. So what does this mean? It means that the offensive line has been incredibly disappointing in their contribution to the ground game. When it comes to getting to that second level where linebackers have not crashed down on the line of scrimmage, they are getting stopped with ease. The breakout rushing plays are simply not happening, it is a massive reach to expect this team to bust out big rushing plays.

Defenses have been able to impose their will on the Eastern Michigan Offense this season. Front sevens of opposing defenses are causing a lot of problems. Eastern Michigan is a better passing team than running team this season.

Western Michigan Team Defense Preview

Western Michigan has had 45 total defensive drives this season and they yield 5.49 plays per drive. There is not much to take away here when it comes to how many plays per drive opponents run, but they are a team that falls in the average window when it comes to plays per drive. Opponents face third and long situations a lot against this defense. This is a defense that forces opponents to commit penalties, have compromised offensive line play, and fail to convert on crunch possessions. Passing plays make up 53.04% of their opponents’ play calls.Western Michigan tends to face teams that prefer to air it out or opponents want to air it out against them.

Western Michigan opponents have struggled with running the ball and this defense has crushed the spirits of their opponents with zero or negative yard plays. 4th and Short is not a cake walk against this defense, maybe passing on 4th and Short or having some sort of RPO is the way to go here because if an Offensive Coordinator thinks that they can just line and run a Quarterback Sneak or hand it off to a tailback, they are mistaken. Opponent rushing yards attributed to their offensive line this season comes out to 2.3 yards per carry. Opponent offensive lines have been simply unable to support their running games against this defense. When it comes to getting to that second level, running backs are getting stopped. This defense does not allow themselves to be gashed. Long breakout runs against this Defense are far too common. This is a very porous rushing defense that is incapable of preventing a situation where their safeties chase down a running back or quarterback.

Western Michigan has made the turnover belt, chain, pads, lunch pail or whatever gimmick they use change hands a lot. This is a Defense that causes pure aggravation. Western Michigan should have a sign ready for opponents near the Visitor Locker Room that says “Welcome to Hell”, this front seven is deep and they cause a lot of problems. Western Michigan is better at stopping the run than the pass this season.

Western Michigan Team Offense Preview

Western Michigan has had 44 drives in non-garbage time minutes and they average 4.77 plays per drive. Relatively speaking, Western Michigan is not a team that runs many plays per drive. The offense is either prone to faltering and struggles to notch first downs or extremely explosive, we will need to find out a bit more to get answers. Any defense is in for a challenge with Western Michigan, given their ability to accrue more than 5 yards on 1st Downs and their ability to convert on 3rd and 4th Downs. They put a lot of pressure on opposing defenses.Passing plays make up 40.95% of their play calls.They favor running the ball as opposed airing it out.

Western Michigan is not doing anything particularly special as far as their ability to avoid negative yardage plays on the ground. Based on the Adjusted Line Yards metric, which measures the amount of credit that should be ascribed to the offensive line for a rushing play, they average 3.37 yards per carry. This is an elite offensive line when it comes to generating a push for the running game. They know how to create creases for running backs to break loose. Playing 7 in a box may not be enough for opposing defenses, this is a great O-Line. The offensive line and running back corps deserve a lot of credit for gashing defenses with their running game like the way they have this season. They feature a relatively average explosiveness in the running game, maybe there will be a breakout rushing play, but it is not something to count on from them.

Defenses have had trouble making big, disruptive plays against Western Michigan this season. Western Michigan is among the best in the country at keeping defensive front sevens at bay. Opposing defenses need their secondary players to step up and cause trouble in order for this Offense to be disrupted. Western Michigan has shown themselves to be a better running team than passing team this season.

The Eastern Michigan Roster

The Players to Watch for Eastern Michigan

Preston Hutchinson QB 6-2 203

This season, Preston Hutchinson has put up 1100 yards and 7 touchdowns. He has thrown 6 interceptions. He has a QB Rating of 136.3thus far this season. Preston Hutchinson has thrown 6 interceptions this season.As a rusher, Preston Hutchinson has 155.0 rushing yards, which puts him in the 85.87 percentile among Quarterbacks. He ran the ball as opposed to throwing the ball 58.0 times this season, which puts him in the 86.51 percentile. Has he hit paydirt as a runner? He has 6.0 rushing touchdowns this season.

Samson Evans RB 6-0 210

This season, Samson Evans has 70 rushing yards on 27 carries. Was he able to get to the end zone on the ground? He has 0 rushing touchdowns.As a receiver in the backfield, Samson Evans picked up 25 yards. He caught the ball as opposed to taking handoffs or catching laterals 3 times this season. Did he score often as a receiver? He had 0 receiving touchdowns this season.

Tanner Knue WR 5-11 171

This season, Tanner Knue picked up 282 yards. He caught the ball 20 times this season. Did he score often as a receiver? He had 1 receiving touchdowns this season.

Alex Merritt DL 6-2 276

The leading tackler among Defensive Ends for Eastern Michigan, Alex Merritt has 17 tackles this season. He was able to keep rushers back and penetrate the offensive line with 2 tackles for loss, which puts him in the 66.53 percentile among Defensive Ends. When it came to rushing the Quarterback, he has been able to take them down 1 times this season, which put him in the 68.5 percentile among all Defensive Ends in College Football. He has forced 0 fumbles this season.

Korey Hernandez DB 5-11 178.0

He is the leading tackler among non-exclusive Defensive Backs (meaning he can play either Safety Position, Nickel Back, Star or even play as a Cornerback in coverage) for Eastern Michigan, Korey Hernandez had 30 tackles which puts him in the 81.83 percentile among returning non-exclusive Defensive Backs. He was able to keep rushers and receivers back on screens with 0 tackles for loss this season, which puts him in the 32.62 percentile among Secondary position players. When it came to blitzing the Quarterback, this season he was able to take them down 0 times this season. Korey Hernandez as a ball hawker was able to pick off 0 passes this season, which puts him in the 38.31 percentile among returning secondary position players this season.

The Western Michigan Roster

The Players to Watch for Western Michigan

Kaleb Eleby QB 6-1 215

This season, Kaleb Eleby has put up 1138 yards and 12 touchdowns. He has thrown 1 interceptions. He has a QB Rating of 212.6thus far this season. Kaleb Eleby has thrown 1 interceptions this season.As a rusher, Kaleb Eleby has 17.0 rushing yards, which puts him in the 44.29 percentile among Quarterbacks. He ran the ball as opposed to throwing the ball 19.0 times this season, which puts him in the 56.83 percentile. Has he hit paydirt as a runner? He has 4.0 rushing touchdowns this season.

La’darius Jefferson RB 6-1 223

This season, La’darius Jefferson has 335 rushing yards on 66 carries. Was he able to get to the end zone on the ground? He has 2 rushing touchdowns.As a receiver in the backfield, La’darius Jefferson picked up 0 yards. He caught the ball as opposed to taking handoffs or catching laterals 0 times this season. Did he score often as a receiver? He had 0 receiving touchdowns this season.

D’Wayne Eskridge WR 5-9 190

This season, D’Wayne Eskridge picked up 591 yards. He caught the ball 21 times this season. Did he score often as a receiver? He had 6 receiving touchdowns this season.

Ralph Holley DT 6-2 285

The leading tackler among Defensive Tackles for Western Michigan, Ralph Holley has 19 tackles this season. He was able to keep rushers back and penetrate the offensive line with 8 tackles for loss, which puts him in the 98.62 percentile among Defensive Tackles. When it came to rushing the Quarterback, he has been able to take them down 3 times this season, which put him in the 95.64 percentile among all Defensive Tackles in College Football. He has forced 0 fumbles this season.

Marshawn Kneeland DE 6-4 255

The leading tackler among Defensive Ends for Western Michigan, Marshawn Kneeland has 22 tackles this season. He was able to keep rushers back and penetrate the offensive line with 2 tackles for loss, which puts him in the 66.53 percentile among Defensive Ends. When it came to rushing the Quarterback, he has been able to take them down 2 times this season, which put him in the 82.48 percentile among all Defensive Ends in College Football. He has forced 0 fumbles this season.

Bricen Garner S 6-1 190.0

He is the leading tackler among non-exclusive Defensive Backs (meaning he can play either Safety Position, Nickel Back, Star or even play as a Cornerback in coverage) for Western Michigan, Bricen Garner had 35 tackles which puts him in the 87.92 percentile among returning non-exclusive Defensive Backs. He was able to keep rushers and receivers back on screens with 4 tackles for loss this season, which puts him in the 97.02 percentile among Secondary position players. When it came to blitzing the Quarterback, this season he was able to take them down 0 times this season. Bricen Garner as a ball hawker was able to pick off 0 passes this season, which puts him in the 38.31 percentile among returning secondary position players this season.

Patrick Lupro CB 5-10 185

Considered the leading tackler among Cornerbacks for Western Michigan, Patrick Lupro had 20 tackles which puts him in the 77.27 percentile among Corners. He was able to keep rushers and receivers back on screens with 2 tackles for loss this season, which puts him in the 92.38 percentile among Corners. When it came to blitzing the Quarterback, this season he was able to take them down 0 times this season. Patrick Lupro as a ball hawker was able to pick off 0 passes this season, which puts him in the 37.54 percentile among Corners this season.

Eastern Michigan vs. Western Michigan Prediction, Picks, and Odds


Prediction: Eastern Michigan 31 Western Michigan 46

Spread Pick: Western Michigan -13.5 -114 Pinnacle Sports
Moneyline Pick: Western Michigan -459 SportsInteraction
Total Pick: Over 66 -107 Pinnacle Sports