Rockets travel to Kent State Nov. 15 looking to gain bowl eligibility

November 14, 2018 | Athletics, Events, News
By Paul Helgren

With just two games left in the regular season, Toledo is looking for a victory at Kent State Thursday, Nov. 15, in order to gain bowl eligibility for the ninth consecutive season.

The game will start at 6 p.m. and be carried by the CBS Sports Network.

The Rockets (5-5, 3-3 Mid-American Conference) need to defeat the Golden Flashes or Central Michigan in the regular-season finale Nov. 23 in order to reach the minimum bowl requirement of six wins.

Toledo is coming off a 38-15 loss at Northern Illinois Nov. 7 that knocked them out of the MAC West Division title hunt. Sophomore quarterback Eli Peters completed 26 of 47 passes for 264 yards, but Toledo could not keep pace with the Huskies. The Rockets outgained NIU in total offense, 431-427, but missed opportunities and big plays by Northern made the difference.

Toledo trailed by just one, 10-9, late in the first half when NIU’s Sutton Smith blocked a punt and returned it 27 yards for a touchdown. The Huskies scored twice in the third quarter, while the Rockets did not find the end zone again until late in the game. Senior wide receiver Cody Thompson led the offense with eight receptions for 110 yards. Junior Diontae Johnson added seven catches for 52 yards, while senior Jon’Vea Johnson chipped in with four receptions and one TD. Junior Art Thompkins led the rushing attack with 62 yards on 12 carries.

Kent State (2-8, 1-5 MAC) is coming off a 48-14 loss at Buffalo Nov. 6. The Golden Flashes are led by sophomore dual-threat quarterback Woody Barrett, who has thrown for 1,932 yards and 10 touchdowns. He has also run for 442 yards and six TDs. KSU’s lone MAC victory was a 35-28 triumph at Bowling Green Oct. 30. The Flashes also have had a pair of one-point losses, 27-26 to Ohio and 24-23 to Akron.

Toledo leads the series with Kent State, 25-21. The Rockets have won the last three meetings, most recently a 38-7 victory in the Glass Bowl in 2015. Toledo is 4-1 vs. the Golden Flashes since the MAC split into divisions in 1997. Thursday’s game will be only the fourth meeting between the two schools in the past 19 years.

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