NCAA Football: Kent State Golden Flashes vs Iowa Hawkeyes Prediction, Odds and Preview - 09/18/2021

by James Q

NCAA Football: Kent State Golden Flashes vs Iowa Hawkeyes Prediction, Odds and Preview - 09/18/2021

Game Time: 3:30 pm ET, Saturday, September 18th, 2021 
Venue: Kinnick Stadium, Iowa City, Iowa
Where to Watch: BTN

Opening NCAAF Odds at USA Sportsbooks

DraftKings:  Spread:  Iowa -22.5:  O/U: 56.5
BetMGM:  Spread:  Iowa -22.5:  O/U:  57
Caesars:  Spread: Iowa -22.5:  O/U: 56.5

Season Record

Kent State:  1-1 (Mac) 
Iowa:  2-0 (Big Ten)

Iowa’s last matchup was one corn farmers will remember for decades.  Iowa beat the Iowa State Cyclones 27-17.  It was more than a game on the schedule.  It was more than a nearby college rivalry. It was historic.  The Iowa vs Iowa State game first happened in 1894, the interstate rivals had met 70 times since... and it was the first time both teams were in the Top Ten at the same time.  Epic win.  Iowa is favored against Kent State this week, but more than the game, their real challenge is to avoid complacency.  They have to stay focused even though 2 games in they have already gotten the biggest win in school history. The Hawks can't lose focus and drop one to the Golden Flashes.

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Offensive Analysis 

Kent State routed VMI 60-10 last week.  They looked unstoppable. Of course VMI is not a top program.  Kent State only managed to put up 10 points against Texas A&M’s 41 points  the week before when they got routed. Kent State is now averaging 35 PPG this season. QB Dustin Crum has thrown 24-43 with 269 yards, 1 TD, 2 interceptions on the season.   WR Dante Cephas has caught 5 balls for 75 yards, RB Marquez Cooper has 20 carries for a team-high 161 rushing yards and 1 TD.  

Spencer Petras has 251 passing yards, 1 touchdown, 0 interceptions in two games so far.  He’s 73rd in QBR 53.3.  He is not a pass first quarterback and he is not running a pass first offense.  Iowa is a run-focused team.  They use the pass to keep the defenses honest in their coverage of the run game. RB Tyler Goodson does the hard work, he has 40 carries for 154 yards and 2 TD’s on the season. WR Sam LaPorta catches the occasional long ball; he has 6 receptions for 104 total yards on the season.  


Defensive Analysis

The Kent State Golden Flashes had one of the best defenses in the MAC during the Covid-19 shortened season.  They were 16th in the country with 3 sacks per game.  Defending the pass is their specialty with a strong pass rushing defensive line.  Zayin West leads the D-line with team highs for sacks and tackles for a loss. He is joined by Sekou Diaby a 5th year senior and Jordan Revels a Texas State transfer.  The problem for Kent State will still be, not everyone passes all the time. Certainly not Iowa. Buffalo running back Jaret Patterson rushed for 409 yards and 8 touchdowns (tied for most in FBS history) against Kent State.  

Iowa can thank their very strong defense for their current #5 ranking in CFB.  Iowa’s defense has scored 3 touchdowns and created 7 turnovers in their two games.  That has been against two ranked opponents in a row.  The Iowa defense has been on the field for 25 opponents possessions so far and that has produced 7 turnovers.  Dominant.  Iowa has big games ahead on their schedule; Penn State, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Nebraska, whatever happens in those games you can rest assured Iowa will have the better defense.

Golden Flashes vs Hawkeyes Prediction

Our prediction for Saturday, September 18th is….  Iowa 55 -  Kent State 10


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NCAAF Betting Trends

Iowa defeated Kent State, 39-7, in their last meeting in 2004.
The total has hit the under in eight of Iowa's last nine home games.
Iowa is 8-0 in its last eight games. 
Kent State is 8-3 ATS in its last 11 games.

Key Injuries

Kent State:  Nothing reported
Iowa:  Nothing reported

Players to Watch

Kent State:  QB Dustin Crum.  He has 2 interceptions over two games.  He will be facing Iowa’s defense that has forced 7 turnovers and returned 3 for touchdowns.  Dustin needs to take care of the ball above all else.

Iowa:  RB Tyler Goodson.  Iowa’s leading rusher is about to have a huge day against Kent State’s poor run defense.


Notable Quotes

"I'm really kind of pleased with the way the guys have held up. We knew Saturday would be a tough contest just because of the people we were playing against and the whole picture of it.”  Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz about last Saturday against Iowa State.

Starting Lineups

Kent State:  QB  Dustin Crum, RB Marquez Cooper, WR Dante Cephas, WR Ja’Shaun Poke, WR Nykeim Johnson, TE Aaron Hackett

Iowa:  QB Spencer Petras, RB Tyler Goodson, FB Monte pottebaum, WR Tyrone Tracy, WR Nico Ragiani, TE Sam LaPorta


Statistical Leaders


Kent State:  Sean Lewis, since 2017.
Iowa: Kirk Ferentz since 1999 and still going strong.


Weather Forecast 

Mostly Sunny, with a high of 87*,  25% chance of rain.


James Q

About the Author:

James Q. has been involved with sports and gambling his entire life. A former division 1 scholarship basketball player, James understands sports (and especially basketball) inside-and-out. Following his basketball playing days, James parlayed his gambling skills into a semi-pro poker career. James resides in Los Angeles, and especially loves the Los Angeles Clippers, Los Angeles Rams, and Los Angeles Dodgers. And when he isn't betting on sports (and writing about it), James can be found performing stand-up comedy on the Sunset Strip.

All photographic images used for editorial content have been licensed from the Associated Press.

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