All odds courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook.
- Ohio State: o/u 10.5
- Michigan: o/u 9.5
- Penn State: o/u 8.5
- Michigan State: o/u 7.5
- Maryland: o/u 6
- Rutgers: o/u 4
- Indiana: o/u 4
Looking at how the win totals are projected in the Big Ten East, the order in which they’re presented here is how Vegas thinks the standings will look at the end of the season. It’s about as you would expect, with Ohio State and Michigan followed by Penn State and Michigan State and then all of the rest, with Maryland clearly ahead of teams like Rutgers and Indiana.
A few of these lines are tough. When it comes to the Buckeyes, you’re basically asking yourself if they beat Notre Dame or not. It’s tough to find two losses on Ohio State’s schedule if the Fighting Irish are not one of them, but we’ve seen crazier things happen before. Michigan is another interesting one. While I’m expecting them to take a step down this season, it’s tough to find two losses on their very easy schedule, let alone the three they would need to fall under the 9.5 total set by the oddsmakers.
The team that catches my eye the most here is Maryland. The Terps have a real chance to be one of the best non-Ohio State offenses in the conference. Quarterback Taulia Tagovailoa is entering his second full season as the starter, and around him are a plethora of top end weapons including wide receivers Rakim Jarrett and Dontay Demus. The defense should be solid as well, anchored by guys like Ruben Hyppolite II, Jakorian Bennett and Tarheeb Still as well as a handful of players just waiting to break out.
Maryland has two easy non-conference games against Buffalo and Charlotte, then get Indiana, Northwestern and Rutgers in-conference as five should-be wins. They likely aren’t quite there yet to knock off Ohio State or Michigan, and road contests against Wisconsin and Penn State won’t be easy, but if they can just grab two wins against the group of SMU, Michigan State and Purdue, they can reach seven wins to hit their total. At worst I see this team winning six games, which would be a push.
- Wisconsin: o/u 8.5
- Minnesota: o/u 7.5
- Iowa: o/u 7.5
- Purdue: o/u 7.5
- NOTE: Nebraska, Northwestern and Illinois have already played, thus have no odds.
The win totals in the Big Ten West are exactly as you’d expect them to be. Someone has to win the games on the schedule in the lesser half of the conference, but nobody knows exactly who that will be. The oddsmakers have given Wisconsin the greatest chance of emerging victorious with the highest win total in the division at 8.5, but it’s not saying all that much since Minnesota, Iowa and Purdue are all right behind them at 7.5. The rest of the West already took part in a Week 0 game, so their win totals are not listed.
The team I'm looking at on this side of the B1G is Iowa. The Hawkeyes had one of the best defenses in the country a season ago, and most of that production is returning. Senior linebacker Jack Campbell is one of the very best in the nation at his position, and Seth Benson alongside him is no slouch either as the pair combined for 245 tackles in 2021. In the secondary, Riley Moss is the definition of a ballhawk, while Joe Evans and Lukas Van Ness return up front having tied as the team’s sack leaders a year ago. If Iowa can put together any semblance of offense — something which, to be fair, is not a strength of any team in the West outside of maybe Purdue — then I like to Hawkeyes to exceed their win total.
Iowa gets two relatively easy games in the non-conference against South Dakota State and Nevada, and then they get Iowa State in a rivalry game that Kirk Ferentz’s squad has owned, winning each of the last six meetings. They then have road contests against Rutgers and Illinois sandwiching a big home battle against Michigan. All three of those games are winnable, as Kinnick Stadium could prove a bugaboo for the Wolverines as it has many teams before them. They probably won’t upset Ohio State on the road, but then they hit a stretch of Northwestern, Purdue, Wisconsin, Minnesota and Nebraska to close it out. I like their chances to win at least three of those games if not four. This would put Iowa at somewhere between 8-10 wins, hitting the over of their 7.5 total.
Odds/lines subject to change. T&Cs apply. See draftkings.com/sportsbook for details.