Hello everyone, and welcome to this week’s betting lines for the Big 10.
I said last week I was trying to do better, and boy did I ever. I went 5-1 last week with my picks, and if I knew better I would’ve actually put some money down on those games.
One of those picks (Under 48.5 for Purdue/Minnesota) was as close as it could’ve been as those two teams scored 48 total points. I am now 32-23 this season after my 5-1 output last week. Let’s get right back to it!
Byes: Penn State, Iowa
Rutgers at Illinois
Line: Illinois -2.5; O/U: 48
Let’s get the (explicit) show of the week out of the way. We all know it’s this game. The two worst teams in the Big 10. By far.
The last we saw of Rutgers they got shutout by Ohio State 56-0. The last we saw Illinois they got blown out by a mediocre Iowa team.
I think both defenses should be able to limit the opposing offenses for most of this game. Illinois’ season-high in points in 24 while Rutgers’ (not to an FCS school) is 17. This game was a 24-7 win for Illinois last year at Rutgers, so I expect another low-scoring game out of these two bottom feeding Big 10 teams.
Pick: Under 48
Purdue at No. 7 Wisconsin
Line: Wisconsin -16; O/U: 51
Wisconsin picked up yet another dominate victory last weekend against Nebraska while Purdue struggled at times against the boat rowers of Minnesota.
Part of those struggles for Jeff Brohm and Purdue came from their sticky situation right now at quarterback. Elijah Sindelar has been significantly better than David Blough for most of this season, but Brohm is still using both of them. Blough threw for 59 yards, 1 touchdown and 2 interceptions last weekend while Sindelar threw for 248 yards, 1 touchdown and 0 picks.
While that much is unclear about Purdue, Wisconsin is about as clear as any team in the conference right now. Alex Hornibrook didn’t look that great at quarterback for the Badgers, but he didn’t need to be great against Nebraska. Running back Jonathan Taylor has been a beast, and he ran for 249 yards and 2 touchdowns against Nebraska last week. Purdue will continue to get stuff together while Wisconsin gets work done at home.
Pick: Wisconsin -16
Northwestern at Maryland
Line: Northwestern -3; O/U: 50
Maryland got absolutely destroyed last week in The Horseshoe by Ohio State while Northwestern looked like an FCS school against Penn State.
Both teams are coming off real embarrassing losses, but only one can come out on top. While Maryland has had a tough beginning to the Big 10 season, especially with having to start a third-string QB, but Northwestern has had it much harder in terms of schedule (at Wisconsin, vs. Penn State). I think the Wildcats regroup this weekend and take care of business on the road thanks to senior running back Justin Jackson.
Pick: Northwestern -3
No. 9 Ohio State at Nebraska
Line: Ohio State -24; O/U: 56.5
I’ve picked Ohio State to not cover the last few weeks. What have they done the last few weeks? Yup, they’ve covered. For that simple reason, and the fact that Nebraska is no good anyways, I’m picking the Buckeyes. No deep analysis needed for this one.
Pick: Ohio State -24
No. 21 Michigan State at Minnesota
Line: Michigan State -4; O/U: 40.5
After getting through their first three games with relative ease, the Minnesota Golden Gophers have started the Big 10 season 0-2 after losses to Maryland and Purdue.
Meanwhile, MSU is 2-0 after a home win against Iowa and ... well, we all know who the other win was against. But needless to say, MSU’s defense has been impressive. Forget the Notre Dame game, as MSU’s offensive struggles were a big reason why ND won that game.
Minnesota is averaging 25 points per game at home so far this season. Michigan State’s average points per game on the road? Well, 14 because MSU’s first “road” game was last weekend at Michigan. If Minnesota can get around 25 points, that means MSU only needs 16 to hit the over. I’m not sure Minnesota can put up 25 on MSU’s defense, but I’ll take those odds because I think the Spartans’ offense can make up for Minnesota’s lost points.
Pick: Over 40.5
No. 17 Michigan at Indiana
Line: Michigan -6.5; O/U: 48
I picked against Michigan yet again last week in hopes that they would destroy the spread.
That obviously didn’t work. So that means I must right the ship and pick Michigan this week, right?
WRONG! For the first time this year I am choosing the over/under for a Michigan game. These games with Indiana are usually higher scoring and intense (except in the blizzard in AA last year). The weather looks good for this weekend — and hopefully so will Michigan’s offense — so I’m going to be risky here and take the over.
Pick: Over 48