Petzold: How Chippewas will go 7-5 this season, game-by-game


Central Michigan Life sports reporter Evan Petzold breaks down the rest of the 2018 schedule for the Chippewas.

Sept. 1 at Kentucky Wildcats


UK 24, CMU 10

The absence of Josh Paschal on Kentucky's defensive line should be enough to allow Jonathan Ward to let loose a few times. However, the Wildcats' secondary should've have a problem with an inexperienced quarterback in Tony Poljan and a youthful group of wide receivers. 

Sept. 8 vs. Kansas Jayhawks


CMU 38, KAN 16

A year ago Shane Morris threw for 467 yards in the 45-27 victory against Kansas. Much of the same will occur this time around as the Jayhawks remain one of the worst Power-5 teams in the country. 

Sept. 15 at Northern Illinois Huskers


NIU 28, CMU 13

Northern Illinois defensive end Sutton Smith is a game changer and future NFL player. He will prove himself after being defeated by CMU last season. 

Sept. 22 vs. Maine Black Bears


CMU 51, UMaine 12

Redshirt sophomore quarterback Chris Ferguson is the starter for Maine, which features a weak offensive line. CMU's Mitch Stanitzek, Malik Fountain and others should have a field day. Maybe even a couple interceptions for the young defensive back core.  

Sept. 29 at Michigan State Spartans


MSU 24, CMU 12

The Spartans are one of the best teams in the nation and will prove to be too much for CMU in East Lansing. Despite the in-state rivalry and being one of the biggest games this season, MSU is too talented and well-coached.  

Oct. 6 vs. Buffalo Bulls


CMU 20, BUF 10

Muskegon product Tyree Jackson is one of the best quarterbacks in the MAC but by Week 6, the athleticism of the Chippewas should be enough to steal a win at home.

Oct. 13 vs. Ball State Cardinals


CMU 41, BALL 3

Ball State hasn't had a winning season since 2013. The team was 2-10 last year. Offense and defense will both have great games. 

Oct. 20 vs. Western Michigan Broncos


CMU 21, WMU 20

After last year's game came down to the wire, the Chippewas will come out on top at Kelly/Shorts Stadium due to the heroics of Poljan and Ward on offense and a late stop by the defense. 

Oct. 27 at Akron Zips


AKRN 10, CMU 3

Kato Nelson is an inconsistent quarterback, providing CMU with opportunities to win the game on defense. Unfortunately, the offense is unable to produce against linebacker Ulysses Gilbert III and cornerback Kyron Brown. 

Nov. 3 at Eastern Michigan Eagles


CMU 42, EMU 31

Eastern Michigan secured its first winning season in 21 years in 2016. This one will be an offensive shootout with CMU coming out victorious. At this point of the season, Poljan will have found his groove in the pocket. 

Nov. 10 vs. Bowling Green Falcons


CMU 17, BG 14

Ward and Bowling Green's Andrew Clair will duke it out on the ground, while Michael Armstrong cashes in on a late field goal for the win. 

Nov. 23 at Toledo Rockets


TOL 35, CMU 10

Without 2017 MAC Player of the Year Logan Woodside, the Rockets need a new quarterback. By the last week in the season, that should be figured out and the offense will be too much for CMU. The reigning MAC Champions will take this one.