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Why Northwestern Will Beat Minnesota

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70% of you somehow believe that Minnesota will reign victorious at the vicious confines of Ryan Field Saturday. You hold this mistaken belief in spite of the following facts:

  • Mike Kafka is leading the NCAA in pass completion percentage and can gallop like a horse. He has stonishing potential.
  • All the injured NW linebackers and cornerbacks will return to play against the Gophers, meaning NW will feature a fully healthy defense for the first time this year. Plus, the Wildcats return their top running back, who didn't play against Syracuse because of injury.
  • Adam Weber and Minnesota are being lauded for their effort in a two touchdown loss to Cal, while everyone conveniently forgets they barely survived Syracuse and Air Force.
  • Vegas says Northwestern is favored. And they gamble for a living. Which means they aren't homers who get fooled by an injury plagued miracle loss to an improving Syracuse team.
  • The Minnesota offense is averaging 21 points per game, has no running attack to speak of, and features a quarterback who takes a sack or gives the ball to the other team when he feels an ounce of pressure. They statistically have the worst offense in the Big Ten, but I realize there was no true cupcake on the Gopher schedule so far, so it's a skewed statistic.

Some nice counterarguments exist, but Minnesota doesn't do one thing well. Their defense is unexceptional, picking off one ball in three games and failing to generate a pass rush on Paulus or Riley of Cal. The offense subsists on the occasional circus catch by Decker and little else. Weber, a veteran leader, has regressed accuracy wise and threw 3 picks in the span of 12 minutes against Cal. So why all of a sudden do 70% of you believe they're going to snap out of this offensive funk?

Make sure to go back and submit your picks for Week 4 of the Obligatory Predictions Contest. Weekly winners get a chance to write 500 words on the site. NEW this year is our season long competition - win the whole damn thing and we send you something amazing.