Big Ten Predictions and Best Bets – November 7, 2020
I was one of the many really looking forward to the Purdue vs. Wisconsin clash this weekend. The bad news is that game got canceled and we’ll have to continue waiting to see if Rondale Moore will take the field.
The good news is there are six other conference games taking place on Saturday to focus our attention on.
- Michigan vs. Indiana
- Nebraska vs. Northwestern
- Michigan State vs. Iowa
- Maryland vs. Penn State
- Minnesota vs. Illinois
- Rutgers vs. Ohio State
With that in mind, here are my Big Ten predictions for November 7.
Michigan vs. Indiana Predictions
- Michigan to beat Indiana
- Predicted Total: 54-58 points
Buckle up for what should be one of the best college football games on Saturday. Jim Harbaugh’s bunch anxiously arrives in Bloomington hoping to rinse out a bad taste from losing last weekend to the Spartans.
On the flip side, Indiana hopes to keep things rolling and push their record to 3-0.
Why do I like Michigan to win this game on the road?
The Wolverines offense has been electric on the ground – averaging 204 rushing yards/game on an impressive 6.3 yards per carry. Unfortunately for the Hoosiers, stopping the run is their biggest weakness.
Nebraska vs. Northwestern Predictions
- Northwestern to beat Nebraska
- Predicted Total: 49-53 points
Scott Frost has been begging for games – even going as far as attempting to schedule a game against Chattanooga on Halloween. Now instead of preparing for a road test in Evanston, he’s busy making sure the media knows his team is holding up emotionally.
The Wildcats smothered Maryland before defeating Iowa at Kinnick Stadium. NW head coach Pat Fitzgerald has good balance on offense, a host of playmakers on defense, and the Cornhuskers simply cannot be trusted.
Look for Northwestern to send Nebraska back to Lincoln staring at an 0-2 hole.
Michigan State vs. Iowa Predictions
- Iowa to beat Michigan State
- Predicted Total: 44-48 points
Recency bias is going to steer bettors toward backing Michigan State and the points. After all, MSU just beat Michigan at the Big House while the Hawkeyes were busy losing at home to Northwestern.
Not so fast.
Iowa is due for a bounce-back game against a Mel Tucker-led squad that’s still searching for an identity. Kirk Ferentz’s boys are stingy against the pass and should be able to give Rocky Lombardi plenty of problems.
Maryland vs. Penn State Predictions
- Penn State to beat Maryland
- Predicted Total: 60-64 points
Penn State is 0-2 and Taulia Tagovailoa lit up the Golden Gophers D in a prime-time spot. Nevertheless, this is the utter definition of a “get right” spot for the Nittany Lions. The Terrapins defense surrendered 43 points to Northwestern and 44 to Minnesota.
Sean Clifford may be missing his top weapon in the backfield (Journey Brown), but he’s got more than enough tools around him to make a dent in the Terps D.
The 25-point line ultimately may be too large for me to get behind, but I have no qualms about saying Penn State will wind up winning this game handily.
As far as a Big Ten pick I do endorse a bet on….
Minnesota vs. Illinois Predictions
- Illinois to beat Minnesota
- Predicted Total: 64-68 points
Not all of my Big Ten predictions are chalky. On that note, here’s where I’ll go out on a limb and say that Illinois pulls off the upset. Latching onto the Fighting Illini +7.5 is one of my best college football bets of the week, but I see nothing wrong with pouncing on Lovie Smith and company to win the game outright.
Any theories related to Minnesota’s defense being solid can be thrown out the window – at least for now.
- 0 points allowed/ game
- 5 passing yards allowed/game
- 5 rushing yards allowed/game
Any concerns that about Illinois riding with a fourth-string quarterback should be put to bed. In fact, I’ll go out on another limb and say that Coran Taylor is the most talented signal-caller on the Fighting Illini’s roster. And he’s more than willing to put the work in.
#Illini QB Coran Taylor: "I’m gonna go home, take a shower and start watching film. Probably for the rest of the day."— Gavin Good (@itsallG_O_O_D) October 31, 2020
Rutgers vs. Ohio State Predictions
- Ohio State to beat Rutgers
- Predicted Total: 63-67 points
Let’s keep this short and sweet because there are no versions of Rutgers strolling into Columbus and emerging unscathed. Just two games in and Ryan Day’s high-powered offense is already firing on all cylinders – a scary thought for the Scarlet Knights.
With the spread ballooning to 38.5 at trusted sites like MyBookie, I’ll stay on the sidelines and opt not to touch this game. Then again, the Buckeyes could very easily run up this score in their quest for a spot in the College Football Playoff.
Big Ten Picks for November 7
- Michigan (-3) -115
- Northwestern (-3.5) -110
- Illinois (+7.5) -125
As good of a start as it has been for the Hoosiers, I think they run into a buzzsaw this weekend versus a restless Michigan team.
With Scott Frost’s focus on “seeking pity” rather than preparing for the Wildcats, I envision Northwestern beating up the Cornhuskers.
Finally, if Illinois upending Minnesota is a little bold for your liking, head to BetNow for this Big Ten prediction. The Fighting Illini are getting 7.5 points – that’s too many for me to ignore.