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Big Ten Week 13 Picks, Predictions

Can Northwestern score? (No.) Can anyone care about Michigan State-Rutgers? (No.)

NCAA Football: Ohio State at Penn State Matthew O’Haren-USA TODAY Sports

Football’s happening! Some of it might even be good!

...who are we kidding. It’s all gonna suck.

“Are they any good at this?” OTE Betting Update

Boilerman31: Creighton takes honors for the week going 5-1 ATS. Stew jumps LPW for second place, which is all we can compete for with BRT 10 units above everyone.

Saturday, November 23

Illinois Fighting Illini at Iowa Hawkeyes

11am | BTN | Iowa -15 (opened Iowa -12) | O/U 48

Straight-Up: Iowa, 16-1
Against the Spread: Illinois, 13-4

Boilerman: Both teams are on nice cover streaks with Iowa covering the last 3 and Illinois covering their last 5 games. I’m picking Illinois to cover this one but I don’t really have any good rationale for it. Hawkeyes 21-13.

MC ClapYoHandz: Since Wisconsin’s terrible meltdown in Champaign I have been picking Illinois mostly to console myself, and to my surprise it has been most fruitful! Unfortunately I think the buck stops here. Iowa has been playing well and will be too much to handle at home. Illinois beats the spread but goes down swinging.

Dead Read: Some part of me thinks Illinois might win this. Lovie is playing with house money, and Iowa is between trophy games. While that would be fun, I think Illinois acquits itself well...but comes up just short of the upset.

Stew: I think Iowa wins fairly comfortably, but that doesn’t mean they cover. This ain’t gonna be 63-0. But something like 30-17 would be quite welcome.

BRT: Come on, fighting Lovies! Illinois shows up, but Iowa is feeling good after one of the biggest wins in program history last week and is able to dispatch them.

MNW: While 63-0 is the more recent trend of this series, a nice Iowa letdown after a good showing where the playbook was opened—with, as HoyaGoon pointed out at one point, lots of presnap motion with the tight ends—ever so slightly. Time to head back into the zone running and not come out. Iowa, 24-10.


UI or U of I?

This poll is closed

  • 32%
    The one all the Naperville kids wanted to go to
    (63 votes)
  • 67%
    The one all the Naperville kids actually went to
    (128 votes)
191 votes total Vote Now

Minnesota Golden Gophers at Northwestern Wildcats

11am | ABC (really?!) | Minnesota -13.5 | O/U 39.5

Straight-Up: Minnesota, 17-0 (might also be the final score)
Against the Spread: Minnesota, 16-1

Boilerman: I just keep staring at this total, granted, Minnesota is on a 7-0 under run against Fitz. I fully expect Minnesota to return to their winning ways. They’re on a 9-1 ATS run when favored by 10+ points. Gophers go to the lakeside and row their way to a W. Minnesota 24-9.

MC: Northwestern didn’t fool anyone last week and Minnesota is pissed. This game being in Evanston merely means Minnesota’s home field advantage isn’t quite as strong. Minnesota in a laugher.

Dead Read: I can think of no good reason why this game will be close. Northwestern lost to Nebby. Minnesota crushed Nebby. Also, I think the Wildcat players probably just want this season to be over. Minny covers, with or without its starting quarterback.

Stew: How much of this line being a bit low because Tanner Morgan may not play? Minnesota’s QB depth isn’t great, but still. With those WRs does that matter? I think the gophers can get to 30+, and I just don’t see jNW getting to 15.

BRT: Northwestern has been capable of surprises in the past, so anything is possible, but I don’t think that’s 2019 Northwestern so much.

MNW: Because it’s the last time I can mention this: Minnesota has not scored at Ryan Field since 2013. Tonight, WSR was kind enough to call our attention to this:

Possibly no Aiden Smith means...well, that Northwestern scores 0 with Andrew Marty instead of 3 with Smith? Maybe Jason Whittaker runs aimless QB power left, aimless QB power right, incomplete pass, punt...then Seth Green comes on for Minnesota and does the same thing? Or maybe Fitz just goes nuts and runs Riley Lees (who you might remember as the only Northwestern receiver to catch a pass against UMass) out of the Wild Boomer formation.

Who gives a shit at this point. Let’s get this over with. Minnesota, 24-0.



This poll is closed

  • 77%
    Minnesota covers.
    (185 votes)
  • 7%
    Minnesota does not cover.
    (18 votes)
  • 14%
    I have been drinking heavily.
    (35 votes)
238 votes total Vote Now


Which does Northwestern end the game with more of?

This poll is closed

  • 40%
    Points scored
    (94 votes)
  • 59%
    Quarterbacks used
    (140 votes)
234 votes total Vote Now


Hell, does Northwestern even score?

This poll is closed

  • 48%
    (114 votes)
  • 51%
    (121 votes)
235 votes total Vote Now


Will Mick McCall be the Northwestern OC in September 2020?

This poll is closed

  • 100%
    (180 votes)
180 votes total Vote Now


Why is this happening?

This poll is closed

  • 9%
    You suck, MNW
    (24 votes)
  • 30%
    Because you touch yourself at night
    (74 votes)
  • 12%
    Because you deserve it
    (31 votes)
  • 25%
    Because Fitz
    (62 votes)
  • 22%
    Fuck you
    (54 votes)
245 votes total Vote Now

Michigan State Spartans at Rutgers Scarlet Knights

11am | FS1 | MSU -20.5 (opened MSU -23) | O/U 45

Against the Spread:

Boilerman: Mark Dantonio’s team is a on a six-game skid against the number. A trip to the East Coast might be what the doctor ordered. I’m not buying it though. One would think this game would be an easy under given the Spartans’ defense but Sparty on the road hasn’t been in ugly games as much as they are in East Lansing. Granted, Rutgers is still awful. Sparty 31-17.

MC: Rutgers is so, so bad, but MSU hasn’t come close to impressing in a while. I don’t think the result of this one is in doubt and the spread being less than half of the OSU-Rutgers game should make it attainable, but I am going to wince and say Rutgers beats the spread? I already regret it.

Dead Read: If the Spartans cannot get a Mollywhoppin’ out of this, it will be time for Dantonio to investigate retirement locales. I think MSU will cover, though.

Stew: I hate this line. I can’t take MSU to cover anything, and I refuse to take rutger to cover. Ugh. I guess gimme the MSU to cover.

BRT: MSU is kinda bad, but Rutgers is REALLY bad. I could see Dantonio keeping this to an 18-point win though, just because he seems hell-bent on pissing off his fanbase to the max.

MNW: Michigan State is going bowling, and Johnny Langan is the kind of quarterback that will scramble one too many times and get his head taken off by a Spartan linebacker. Isaih Pacheco goes nowhere, Sparty leans on Rutgers, Nunzio has a real bad time. Michigan State, 28-3.



This poll is closed

  • 33%
    sparty big
    (77 votes)
  • 46%
    sparty less big
    (109 votes)
  • 19%
    (46 votes)
232 votes total Vote Now

Penn State Nittany Lions at Ohio State Buckeyes

11am | FOX | OSU -18.5 | O/U 59.5

Straight-Up: OSU, 17-0
Against the Spread: OSU, 11-6

pkloa: Whooaa oh, sometimes I get a good feelin’, yeah. I get a feelin’ that we’re never ever ever gonna beat Ryan Day, yeah, I get a good feelin’. Buckeyes Death Machine welcomes the Nittany Lions and sends them packing, Buckeyes cover easily.

Boilerman: Time to see what Ohio State is truly made of. They’re currently 0-7 ATS before in the game before Michigan. Last week they called off the dogs, much to the public’s (and yours truly) chagrin. I don’t think Penn State has the right formula to pull off the upset but I think it’ll be closer than what the public thinks. Buckeyes 31-25.

MC: This would be a little more fun if it was in Happy Valley. I’m not going to be an idiot and try to predict when Ohio State actually drops one, but the spread is a tough call. I think Penn State brings their A game to this one but OSU proves to be a special team this year. Buckeyes cover.

Dead Read: Each team will be facing its toughest opponent of the regular season on Saturday. I think PSU is good enough -- and prideful enough -- to keep this relatively close. I think this will be something like 35-21. Buckeyes win, but do not cover.

Stew: OSU is really an almost 20 point favorite over a top10 team?? No way, right? I think OSU just rips off PSU’s arm and beats them with it. OSU covers.

BRT: OSU has been prone to brain farts before, but not, so far, with Ryan Day. Penn State is fine, but they’ve proven themselves more than mortal by losing to some random team from the West. Color me very surprised if OSU has real trouble here.

MNW: I don’t have the energy for this one. Penn State looks like a generically good Top 10 team. Ohio State looks like they’re not even playing the same sport as most teams. Buckeyes, 38-17.


IT’S B1G. IT’S N00D.

This poll is closed

  • 51%
    (147 votes)
  • 28%
    Ho-hum, a close or good game or something.
    (82 votes)
  • 19%
    (57 votes)
286 votes total Vote Now

Nebraska Cornhuskers at Maryland Terrapins

2:30pm | BTN | UNL -4.5 (opened UNL -7.5) | O/U 64

Straight-Up: Nebraska, 16-1
Against the Spread: Maryland, 13-4

Boilerman: This is a game which will be played. I don’t have any fancy trends or stats for this one. Both teams are bad. If this were in Lincoln, I’d say Huskers roll easily. I still think they cover in a shootout. Nebraska 38-30.

MC: Adrian Martinez looked to have figured some things out last week and can build on that. The University of Maryland football team participates in the game of American football against scheduled collegiate opponents. Nebraska covers this one.

Dead Read: This is a contest between two poor football teams. Nebraska has been horrid on the road under Frost. Maryland has enough speed at the skill positions to cause problems for Nebby’s lackluster defense. Martinez will make three brilliant plays, he will be paralyzed by indecision three or four times, and he will also make two or three horrible decisions. Let’s say Nebraska wins by 7-10 points, but that might be wishful thinking.

Stew: Maryland is terrible, and I think UNL should be able to score at will. However, it’s the single longest trip in the conference, I believe, and UNL has been pretty awful on the road. So I’m just going to go ahead and middle this.

BRT: Nebraska is just horrendous on the road, so there’s a pretty good chance they drop this, even against hapless Maryland. This might be a fun one to tune into for the unaffiliated though, if you like lots of scoring. I have chosen Nebraska because I am tied with Aaron in straight-up picks, and we picked the same winners this week. So I figured I’d choose a difference-maker and I may as well let my own team crush my undefeated streak in straight-up picks. Thanks, Huskers. I’m already annoyed.

MNW: Why am I being forced to pick this game? Why are either of the teams in this conference?

I realize both teams were only on bye last week, but it feels like I haven’t paid attention to a Nebraska or Maryland game in about a month. And I really want to keep it that way. Looks like I took the Huskers to cover, but I don’t have any logic beyond “I want more than one team to be worse than Northwestern.”



This poll is closed

  • 67%
    generic big red
    (118 votes)
  • 32%
    generic other colors
    (58 votes)
176 votes total Vote Now

Purdue Boilermakers at wisconsin badgers

3pm | FOX | wisc -24.5 (opened -21 | O/U 47.5

Straight-Up: wisconsin, 17-0
Against the Spread: Purdue, 12-5

Boilerman: Jeff Brohm is 10-0 ATS on the road as a 14+ point underdog. That said, I don’t think this game will be very interesting outside of seeing if that trend continues. Jonathan Taylor should have his way with the Boilermaker D and Purdue’s still starting a walk-on. Wisconsin 24-7.

MC: Teams have figured out how to be more productive against a Wisconsin defense that started the year historically hot, so I’m inclined to say Purdue makes this a close one. Then again, it’s a home game and far and away the biggest key to beating the Badger defense is a super-mobile QB, and Purdue is not exactly at full strength. I will say Purdue just beats the spread, and in doing so Wisconsin will probably then make me look dumb with a 41-10 win. I am fine with that kind of dumb.

Dead Read: I have nothing but respect for what Purdue has accomplished despite the ridiculous spate of injuries. I just do not believe they have enough horses up front to run with Wisconsin for four quarters. I think Wiscy covers, but Brohm has surprised me before...and he may surprise me again.

Stew: I think wisconsin wins easily, but Purdue can score points, and wisconsin has shown that their defense is a little more vulnerable than previously expected. Purdue with the backdoor cover.

BRT: I think Wisconsin should be able to do this, but Purdue is well-coached, and if Wisconsin’s still got the case of Huskertackleitis they apparently picked up last week, it could get interesting. Of course, I’m hoping that happens. My team is terrible, and I want nothing but chaos.

MNW: Is Rondale Moore back? If so, maybe I’ll regret the cover call. But in the POW camp, with the badger defense roaring, it’s gonna be ugly. wisconsin, 35-10.


Purdue has not beaten wisconsin since 2003.

This poll is closed

  • 38%
    And they’ll wait a lot longer. badgers big.
    (86 votes)
  • 46%
    Can we interest them in a moral victory?
    (104 votes)
  • 15%
    (36 votes)
226 votes total Vote Now

Michigan Wolverines at Indiana Hoosiers

2:30pm | ESPN | Michigan -9.5 (opened -7) | O/U 53

Straight-Up: Michigan, 11-6
Against the Spread: Indiana, 13-4

pkloa: [Admiral Akbar It’s a Trap!.gif] Indiana is a good football squad. Michigan is better, but not to the point where they can’t dicktrip. I’m calling Indiana, straight up.

Boilerman: Shea Patterson had to open his mouth. I’m guessing Harbaugh isn’t too happy his QB admitted to looking ahead to Ohio State. I’m think Indiana still finds a way to let this one slip through their hands but wouldn’t be surprised if they pull the outright upset. Michigan 34-28.

MC: I’m a big fan of what Indiana has been doing this season and Michigan provided bulletin board material, so instinct would lead me to Indiana, but I don’t know. I do think Michigan has figured things out since the Penn State loss, and I went and checked if Tom Allen was in coaching the Dantonio coaching tree and therefore has a Ph.D. in channeling hate into productivity. He is not. Michigan covers, maybe.

Dead Read: I will take Indiana straight up. The Hoosiers look like a legit football team, and Michigan isn’t even going through the motions of pretending to respect them. Also, I have to admit loving the idea of Indiana stopping Harbaugh in his tracks.

Stew: I think Michigan probably has been looking ahead a bit, but they’ve been playing well enough that I think they still win. But go ahead and gimme Indiana to cover. It’s just too many points to swallow.

BRT: I picked Michigan because bad things rarely happen to bad people/football teams. I’m cheering hard for Indiana though. Go get that monkey off your back guys, and use that bulletin board material Michigan has kindly supplied you.

MNW: YOU BLOCKHEAD! Michigan, 34-13.


Does Charlie Brown kick the football this time?

This poll is closed

  • 40%
    Yep! #9WINdiana comes early!
    (104 votes)
  • 28%
    No, but can we interest him in a moral victory?
    (73 votes)
  • 30%
    (77 votes)
254 votes total Vote Now

Let us know your picks and predictions in the comments.