clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

The renewal of hate between Ohio State and Michigan tops Rivalry Week's Big Ten college football bets, odds

There is one last chance for glory in the Big Ten regular season. Not only is bowl eligibility is at stake for a number of teams, but the Big Ten East still hasn't been decided yet.

Joe Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

If you were too busy chowing down on Thanksgiving dinner yesterday and missed the week's national picks, you can find the leftovers here.

B1G games (All games Saturday unless otherwise noted):

#4 Iowa (-2) v. Nebraska - Friday 3:30 p.m - ABC

Iowa may have already clinched the Big Ten West, but they are looking to complete an undefeated regular season for the first time since 1922. This isn't the Iowa team we have become used to of the past few years, with the Hawkeyes scoring at least 30 points in the last five games. Iowa is tied with Michigan for the conference lead in turnovers, and should be able to add to that total against Nebraska quarterback Tommy Armstrong Jr., who has thrown 12 interceptions so far this season,

Not only does Nebraska have a chance to play spoiler in this matchup, but after so many close losses this season a win will earn them bowl eligibility. The Cornhuskers have been good on offense, averaging over 440 yards per game, but their defense has really let them down. A win would give Nebraska their first season with two wins over top-10 teams since 1995. Nebraska will give Iowa all they can handle in this one, but I get the feeling the Hawkeyes pull out a late win in Lincoln.

Iowa 31 Nebraska 27

Indiana (-7) v. Purdue - 12:00 p.m. - Big Ten Network

A win in West Lafayette on Saturday afternoon would give Indiana their first season where they are bowl eligible in eight years. This pick would be a lot easier if the status of Jordan Howard was known, but the UAB transfer only carried the football three times against Maryland. Stepping in for Howard was Devine Redding, who rushed for a career-high 130 yards in the comeback victory.

After David Blough suffered a concussion last week against Iowa, Austin Appleby has reclaimed the role of Purdue's starting quarterback. Both teams are horrific on defense, but Indiana has a more productive offense, even if Howard doesn't end up playing. It certainly would make Purdue's season if they could run Indiana's bowl hopes, but the Hoosiers have played well against bad teams this year. The Hoosiers win the Old Oaken Bucket for the third year in a row.

Indiana 45 Purdue 31

Maryland v. Rutgers (-1) - 12:00 p.m. - Big Ten Network

It's not like this game needed any help in being awful, but last week Caleb Rowe suffered a concussion against Indiana, and the status of Perry Hills is also up in the air, so it's not known who will start at quarterback for the Terrapins. Maryland is still winless in the Big Ten this year, and with all their injury issues it's hard to see that changing on Saturday.

Rutgers was able to earn their first win in what seemed like forever when they stepped out of conference to beat Army 31-21 last week. The Scarlet Knights still have slim bowl hopes if they earn a win on Saturday, but they'll need the APR to help them out if the NCAA decides to let some 5-7 teams play. While I'm not totally confident that Rutgers will run away with this matchup, I do like their offense a little more than Maryland's, especially since they don't have nearly as many questions at quarterback.

Rutgers 27 Maryland 17

Wisconsin (-2.5) v. Minnesota - 3:30 p.m. - Big Ten Network

Wisconsin has to be happy that they have the yearly rivalry games against Minnesota since the Badgers has dominated the series of late, winning the last 11 against the Golden Gophers. The Badgers have to be seething after being cheated out of win last week against Northwestern in Madison, which dropped them from the CFP top-25. Wisconsin hasn't been nearly as proficient this year on the ground, as they are only averaging 138.2 yards per game on the ground. Luckily Joel Stave, who has recorded 29 wins at quarterback during his career, has picked up the offense at times.

Last week the Golden Gophers were able to give Tracy Claeys his first win as permanent head coach, with a 32-23 victory over Illinois. The big star of the game was running back Shannon Brooks, who ran for 174 and three touchdowns. Quarterback Mitch Leidner continued his strong play, and has only thrown one interception over the past four games. The battle for Paul Bunyan's Axe will be a physical affair which won't feature much scoring, and for some reason I see the Golden Gophers ending their slide against the Badgers to become bowl eligible.

Minnesota 17 Wisconsin 14

#16 Northwestern (-3.5) v. Illinois - 3:30 p.m. - ESPNU

I don't know exactly how Northwestern keeps doing it, but they keep finding ways to win ugly. The Wildcats have won their last four games by a combined 17 points. For some reason it doesn't feel like Northwestern should be the 16th-ranked team in the country, but they are just a win away from earning their first 10-win season since 2012. Running back Justin Jackson has been giving Northwestern all they need on offense lately, rushing for 441 yards over the past three games.

Much like last year when it came down to the game against Northwestern, Illinois needs a win to become bowl eligible this year. The ranking Northwestern has might be all the Wildcats need in this matchup, since the Fighting Illini have lost their last 12 games to ranked opponents by an average of 22.6 points per game. The Illinois defense is greatly improved compared to last year and for some reason I see them making one last push to have the interim tag removed from Bill Cubit's title.

Illinois 24 Northwestern 21

Penn State v. #5 Michigan State (-10.5) - 3:30 p.m. - ESPN

How bad did Penn State look last week? Sure it was against Michigan's tough defense but the Nittany Lions looked like they had no leadership. It's hard to fault Christian Hackenberg when he has to have no confidence in his coaching staff and offensive line. Saquon Barkley has looked great during the year, but who knows what the freshman will be able to get against a Michigan State defense that just shut down Ezekiel Elliott and the Ohio State rushing attack.

How quickly a week can change things. The win over Ohio State in Columbus on Saturday vaulted the Spartans to just outside the CFP top-four, and wins against Penn State and Iowa would certainly get them in the playoff. It is still unknown whether Connor Cook will be able to play in this one, but Tyler O'Connor and Damion Terry held their own against the Buckeyes. A win would clinch the Big Ten East for the Spartans, but it's not going to be easy for them. I think Penn State keeps it within double-digits here, but Michigan State punches their ticket for a trip to Indianapolis next week.

Michigan State 23 Penn State 16

#8 Ohio State (-1) v. #10 Michigan - 12:00 p.m. - ABC

We saved the best for last this week. The Game. I don't need to preach the importance of this matchup, but it feels like old times with both teams highly ranked. The hated rivalry could've had a little more juice had Ohio State taken care of business last week against Michigan State, but the offense game plan didn't give the Buckeyes a chance at success. Ezekiel Elliott let his frustrations fly following the game, and I can't really blame him since it's ridiculous he was only given 12 carries in the loss.

The Ohio State offense has weapons in Elliott and J.T. Barrett rushing the football, but they need to open things open and try and work the football downfield a little, especially since when they have a tremendous wide receiver like Michael Thomas. The Buckeye defense has done everything that has been asked of them this year, and is the only reason Ohio State was undefeated for as long as they were.

Jake Rudock continued his strong play recently with 256 yards passing against Penn State, which gave him his third straight game with at least 250 yards passing. Jehu Chesson hurt his arm during the win over the Nittany Lions, but is expected to play against the Buckeyes. Michigan will need Chesson, who has caught 14 passes for 276 and four touchdowns over the past two games, and Jake Butt to come up big, since it's hard to see the Wolverine rushing attack to get a whole lot against the strong Ohio State front.

Just the coaching matchup along gives this game plenty of intrigue, but the hated rivalry kicks things up another billion notches. Urban Meyer has yet to lose to Michigan as Ohio State head coach, but this is the best team the Wolverines have fielded since Meyer has been on the opposite sideline. Still I like that Meyer is going become involved more in the offense this week, so you could see Elliott rush the ball 40 times here. Michigan hasn't been quite as strong against the run lately so I think Ohio State finds some holes on the ground and earns a hard-fought victory.

Ohio State 28 Michigan 24