Florida International Toledo Spread Line and Predictions Bowl Game

The bowl schedule resumes this Sunday (8:30pm ET) with the Little Caesars Bowl in Detroit, MI with the Florida International Golden Panthers (6-6) of the Sun Belt Conference, in their second bowl game ever taking on the Toledo Rockets (8-4) of the Mid-American Conference. Florida International dropped their last game to Middle Tennessee by a 28-27 count on December 4, while Toledo comes into the contest with a modest two-game winning streak after defeating Central Michigan 42-31 in their last contest on November 26.

Florida International, which is in just their ninth season of playing football, features an offense that averaged 38 points per game in their last five contests, of which they won 4 of those games Running backs Darriet Perry, with 707 yards rushing and 14 touchdowns, and Darrian Mallary with 669 yards rushing and two touchdowns lead the offensive attack. Quarterback Wesley Carroll with a 61.8% completion percentage and 15 touchdowns to go with 13 interceptions has been solid if unspectacular all season long. On defense the Golden panthers have allowed 26.9 points per game on the season and have allowed 365.6 YPG to rank in the middle of the pack nationally.

Toledo is making its third appearance in the former Motor City Bowl, although they have not played in a bowl game period since 2005 when they won the GMAC Bowl buy a 45-13 count over UTEP. The Rocket’s quarterback Austin Dantin has been ruled out of the game with a separated shoulder, and freshman Terrance Owens will replace him. Owens has played well in limited action this season completing 60.3% of his passes for 12 touchdowns with only 2 interceptions. Avoiding turnovers will be a key for the young QB in his first start in a bowl game. Eric Page, a n explosive threat as both a wide receiver with 94 receptions, for 1,081 yards on the season, and as a kickoff returner with 3 returns for touchdowns, could be the difference maker in a relatively tight game. On defense Toledo has allowed 28.1 PPG and an average of 370.4 yards per contest, both ranking in the bottom half of all FBS schools.

The two teams have met twice before in the recent past, with Toledo winning at Florida International by a score of 41-31 in 2009 and Florida International winning at Toledo 35-16 in 2008. The under is 5-2-1 in the Golden Panther’s last 8 games overall and 6-2 in Toledo’s last 8 games in December. The over is 13-5 in the Rocket’s last 18 games as a favorite. Toledo has won 8 of their last 10 bowl games.

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Florida International vs. Toledo Spread, Line and Betting Odds:

Spread:

Florida International -1.5
@ Toledo Rockets +1.5

Game Total:

Over 56 (-110)
Under 56 (-110)

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Florida International vs. Toledo Prediction for the Little Caesars Bowl:

Spread Prediction (Top Play) – The Rockets are a strong underog in this game with a more efficient passing game, a game-breaking wide receiver/kickoff returner in Eric Page and greater fan support than upstart Florida International with Detroit located only a short drive from Toledo. Toledo should have plenty of support on hand, that combined having the most dynamic player on the field in Page should make the difference in a tight game.

PREDICTION (TOP PLAY) – Toledo +1.5

Over/Under Prediction – Take the over in this game. Both teams are nothing to write home about on defense and the coaches likely to open up the playbook a bit with some new wrinkles installed during the extended prep time for the bowl we should see quite a bit of scoring. With a relatively low total of 56 to hit, a more wide-open style of play should yield a total that exceeds the number with relative ease.

PREDICTION – Over 56