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Big 10 Betting Lines: Week 5

Michigan is off, but we’ve still got some Big 10 games to smile about

NCAA Football: Penn State at Iowa Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Happy bye week, Michigan fans, and welcome to this week’s Big 10 betting lines.

Even though Michigan is off this week, there are still some interesting games going on in the conference. I’m hoping to do better than my 3-4 record from last week, putting me at 24-19 overall for the year. I’m actually a horrid 0-4 when it comes to U-M games this year. Luckily for me, Michigan doesn’t play this week so there is no way I can make it worse.

Play along and see if you can do better than yours truly. Odds are you can.

Byes: Michigan, Purdue

Nebraska at Illinois

Line: Nebraska -6.5; O/U: 47

The (explicit) show of the week in the Big 10 comes on Friday night this week! Getting it out of the way early; just the way I like it.

This is such a horrible game. If Illinois is the dumpster fire in the Big 10 right now, then Nebraska is the garbage that is in that flaming dumpster. Throwing two pick-sixes against Northern Illinois at home is a monstrosity. LOSING to Northern Illinois at home is even more of a monstrosity. Beating Rutgers last week by just 10 points puts the icing on the cake.

Illinois is coming off a bye, but got absolutely smacked two Friday’s ago against Southern Florida. The Big 10, collectively, is a pretty good conference, but the bottom tier of the conference is horrendous.

With all of that said, I think Nebraska pulls out the win in a low-scoring game.

Pick: Under 47

Northwestern at No. 10 Wisconsin

Line: Wisconsin -15; O/U: 51

Northwestern has been the most polarizing team in the conference by far. Week 1: 11-point win against Nevada. Week 2: 24-point loss at Duke. Week 3: 42-point win against Bowling Green. This team confuses me with each passing week.

Wisconsin, however, has practically dominated every team it has played this year. The Badgers have been the same consistent team week in and week out — a hard-nosed, tough and physically draining football team. I expect the same to happen this weekend at Camp Randall.

Pick: Wisconsin -15

Maryland at Minnesota

Line: Minnesota -10.5; O/U: 45

Maryland is now down to its third-string quarterback after backup Kasim Hill tore his ACL last weekend against UCF. And things do not get easier for the Terps as they have to visit the Minnesota Golden Gophers this weekend, a team that is about as hot as any team in the conference.

Minnesota has won each of its three games by double digits. The Gophers won five games by double digits last year total. Now they are favored by double digits yet again at home against a banged up Maryland team. Minnesota obviously won’t blow out opponents all year, but I think this has a chance to be another double digit win for P.J. Fleck and company.

Pick: Minnesota -10.5

Indiana at No. 4 Penn State

Line: Penn State -17; O/U: 66

Look. We all know how good of a team Penn State is. The Nittany Lions had a miraculous comeback victory against Iowa last weekend in Kinnick Stadium. But all that aside, Indiana is sadly overlooked in this game.

Indiana has the fifth ranked scoring offense in the Big 10 right now, with Penn State holding down the third spot. The Hoosiers are capable of putting up a lot of points this year, something we have not been able to say for quite some time. They have blown out opponents in their two wins and got blown out by Ohio State in the fourth quarter, making it a one-sided looking score. I don’t think Indiana wins, but I do think plenty of touchdowns will be scored.

Pick: Over 66

Iowa at Michigan State

Line: Michigan State -3.5; O/U: 45

From one game that will probably feature plenty of touchdowns to a game that...probably won’t.

I’m kind of surprised Michigan State is favored in this game considering how horribly they looked against Notre Dame and how well Iowa fared against Penn State. I believe this game will be a classic Big 10 football game — defense, defense, defense. That makes my pick quick and simple.

Pick: Under 45

No. 11 Ohio State at Rutgers

Line: Ohio State -29.5; O/U: 52

Let’s end on a fun note, shall we?

(In epic announcer’s voice): “Michigan’s biggest rival and a school who belongs in the MAC go head to head this weekend as the Ohio State Buckeyes travel to a place where Michigan put up 78 points last season to take on the Rutgers Scarlet Knights!”

That sentence up above is about as exciting as the game is going to get.

Hey, Vegas...Come on, now. This game will be over by halftime.

Pick: Ohio State -29.5