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Big Ten Football Week 7 Schedule, Picks, Previews, and Predictions

Michigan-Penn State, sure. But also...Nebraska-Purdue?!

NCAA Football: Michigan at Penn State Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

A blessed, glorious first day of snow to all in the Midwest. Truly, what a magical time this is to be alive.

The Picks

(all times CT)

Saturday, Oct 15

Minnesota Golden Gophers @ (24) Illinois Fighting Illini

11:00am | BTN | Minnesota -6.5 | O/U 38.5

Straight-Up: Minnesota 10-5
Against the Spread: Illinois 13-2

Thumpasaurus: This weekend, I’m gonna have myself a real good time

I feel alive

And Grange Grove, I’ll turn it inside out

I’m floating around in ecstasy so

DON’T stop me now.....

DON’T stop me cuz I’m having a good time


misdreavus79: Oh man, this game should be really good! If Tommy DeVito plays, #24 Illinois can win it, but I don’t know that Art Sitowski will be able to lead the offense the way DeVito can. So, for the sake of competition, I hope DeVito plays. Minnesota 21, #24 Illinois 17

MaximumSam: Oh look, a big time Big Weird West matchup. Predicting these feels like predicting a game of Pachinko. #24 Illinois has been pretty consistent all season, but somehow lost to Indiana. Minny looked pretty dominant until very much not dominating against Purdue. #24 Illinois certainly seems as capable as Purdue on defense, and they are playing at home. But Minnesota gets it’s Big Mo back, so I’ll roll with them, barely. Minnesota 23, #24 Illinois 20.
HWAHSQB: Minnesota is coming off the bye and #24 Illinois had five starters fail to finish the game against I-wa. #24 Illinois can contain Mo to a large extent, but I’m not sure they can wear down a fresh Gopher D. #24 Illinois is due for a letdown after beating Wiscy and I-wa in the same season for the first time since 1989. Minnesota wins 4-2.

Buffkomodo: #24 Illinois is good and should be going to Indianapolis. The dream season doesn’t end with Minnesota. #24 Illinois wins.

Thumpasaurus: OK sorry I’m gonna ruin the best analysis I’ve ever posted here with some more actual thoughts. Not having Big Time Tommy is going to be a problem, but believe it or not I actually think Art could, with a week of game prep, be a serviceable stunt double. I imagine the QB sneak will be practiced a few times since Arturo is such a big boi.

Mo Ibrahim represents by far the biggest rushing threat we’ve faced, but we’ve been good against the run and pretty good at rushing the passer. We haven’t excelled in coverage, but none of Minnesota’s receivers scare me too much. I think the Illini defense is good enough to force a replay of last week’s game but with longer drives for the visitors. Just don’t turn the ball over a bunch and I really believe this team can do it.

BoilerUp89: Minnesota has had two weeks to stew over their home loss to Purdue. They are a decent team and Ibrahim (the B1G MVP if I was deciding) should be back. The Illini defense should be able to slow him down somewhat but I doubt they can completely shut him down. #24 Illinois on the other hand has no QB and is coming off two big emotional wins. This feels like a let down game to me. Don’t worry Illini fans, a loss here doesn’t eliminate you from the West. It just makes things more interesting. Minnesota 24, #24 Illinois 17.

RockyMtnBlue: It’s finally here. The showdown between the Big10’s two definitive POWER MANBALL SMASH run teams. Penn State comes into Ann... Wait. wut? The definitive power run teams in this league are Minni-fucking-sota and a team that wears orange? What the hell are we even doing here? I guess I’ll take the ranked home team over the unranked road team in what apparently will be an upset. Illinois 20, Minnesota 17.

MNW: Maybe Tommy Devito’s healthy. Maybe Bert can drag this game into the mud and make it 9 straight against Minnesota. I’ve certainly been wrong enough this season. Minnesota, 17-10.


The Rumble in Champaign

This poll is closed

  • 19%
    You’re not there yet, Bert. Boat rowers cover a TD spread
    (51 votes)
  • 42%
    Minny in a close one because lots of running and stuff.
    (112 votes)
  • 38%
    Imagine if Peej tried to fight Bert in a bar. It goes like that.
    (102 votes)
265 votes total Vote Now

(10) Penn State Nittany Lions @ (5) Michigan Wolverines

11:00am | FOX | Michigan -7 | O/U 52

Straight-Up: Penn State 8-7
Against the Spread: Penn State 10-5

Well the colors are pretty anyway

misdreavus79: Did you know? Sean Clifford is 2-1 against Michigan, and could have been 3-0 if two defenders hadn’t run into each other on Michigan’s last non-clock exhausting drive. I expect the game to be just as close as that one, and I’m taking Clifford as the difference maker this time around, since, presumably, he is neither hurt nor sick, like he was last year. Penn State 27, Michigan 21

MaximumSam: Another tough game to predict. Michigan has been a quiet little machine, being good enough to outclass all their opponents but not so great as to obliterate them from orbit. Penn State has been much more up and down, looking great (against Auburn) and rough (against Northwestern) or just sort of there (against Central Michigan). It wouldn’t surprise me at all if they pull out a win, especially by being the first team to really bother J.J. McCarthy.

Still, Michigan has the best combo of offensive line and running back in the conference, and they play stingy defense too. A fun game and Michigan covers with a late score. Michigan 28, Penn State 20.

Buffkomodo: I just watched Michigan play with its food last week and if Indiana had competent o-line play they could have damn near won that game. That seems to be a trend with Harbaugh teams. However, Penn State has a tendency to dick trip. God, this sucks. Give me....whatever I picked on the sheet. I dunno.

BoilerUp89: Oh, one of the three important B1G East games of the whole season. I think Penn State is the better team but it is on the road. Penn State’s earlier road games provide them valuable experience for grinding out a close win in the Big House. Penn State 24, Michigan 21.

RockyMtnBlue: What’s that chant Little Brother likes to mock Michigan with? I think it goes “Over-rated (clap)(clap)(clapclapclap)” They’re annoying little shits but they’re not wrong. When Penn State has the ball they will seriously jack with the heads of Michigan linebackers all day. When the Wolverines have the ball Michigan’s predictability and G5-quality pass protection will get JJ killed. Penn State 34, Michigan 13

MNW: Finally, we’ll actually know who’s going to finish second in the Big Ten East. That question has been keeping me up at night. Michigan, 28-20.


The all-important showdown for 2nd place in the Big10 East.

This poll is closed

  • 25%
    lol Penn State gave $80M to this guy? Michigan rolls.
    (74 votes)
  • 35%
    lol Penn State gave $80M to this guy? He can’t even win close games.
    (104 votes)
  • 39%
    (114 votes)
292 votes total Vote Now

Maryland Terrapins @ Indiana Hoosiers

2:30pm | ESPN2 | Maryland -11 | O/U 62.5

Straight-Up: Maryland 14-1
Against the Spread: Indiana 9-6

misdreavus79: A Maryland team pissed off that they let one get away and an Indiana team exhausted from yet another close call. Yeah... Maryland 37, Indiana 17

MaximumSam: I don’t have enough confidence to say Maryland will blow out the local high school down the street, much less Indiana. But they have shown a lot of grit this season, which isn’t something you usually say about them. The Hoosiers have recommitted to playing defense, so I think they cover in another spiritual victory. Maryland 27, Indiana 17.

Buffkomodo: Read my piece.

BoilerUp89: I do not know how to properly analyze Indiana’s season to date. I’m picking Maryland to win but have no idea whether this will be a close one or a blowout.

RockyMtnBlue: Shut up, BuffKomodo. You’re not the boss of me. Maryland 31, Indiana 24

MNW: MaxSam and BoilerUp have this one right, in my book. Maryland’s the better team and should win, but this game also feels like a repeat of sorts of Indiana-Nebraska. It’s in Bloomington, so let’s give the Hoosiers a little more credit and a 38-35 loss.


The all-important showdown for 4th place in the East.

This poll is closed

  • 51%
    Turtles win big. I’ll explain in the comments.
    (115 votes)
  • 34%
    It’s close, but the turtles pull it out. I’ll explain in the comments.
    (78 votes)
  • 14%
    9WININD... er... 6WINDIANA, baby!
    (32 votes)
225 votes total Vote Now

Wisconsin Badgers @ Michigan State Spartans

3:00pm | FOX | Wisconsin -7.5 | O/U 48.5

Straight-Up: Wisconsin 10-4
Against the Spread: Wisconsin 10-4

It’s like Christmas, but with a lot more Ewww

misdreavus79: At this rate, Wisconsin will have already removed the interim tag by the time Jim Leohnard plays a team with a pulse. Wisconsin 33, Michigan State 20

MaximumSam: I’m not sure Sparty has hit bottom yet. Wisconsin 35, Michigan State 10.

Narrator: Purdue is next on the docket.

Dead Read: I don’t like Sparty’s, at all. I think they’ll get Mollywhopped.

Buffkomodo: Michigan State mostly because Wisconsin is a dumpster fire at the moment and they’re on the road. A Michigan State loss seemingly ends the Spartan’s season, right?

HWAHSQB: Wisconsin has shown they can beat garbage teams and Mertz looks like a Heisman candidate against garbage D. MSU is garbage and their secondary is garbage. Wisconsin wins bigly.

MNW: I don’t remember who I chose and RMB has fallen behind on adding the graphics (who would ever be late on an OTE article?!?!?!? folks,,,) and I don’t care about this piece of shit game. Let’s say wisconsin can pass all over the Spartans like they did NU. badgers, 28-17.

RockyMtnBlue: I remember once upon a time some guy named Graham Mertz had an amazing game and suddenly everyone was afraid of Wisconsin’s passing game. That lasted about 4 minutes. Sparty begins to the right the ship. Michigan State 21, Wisconsin 20.


Remember when this was a marquee matchup?

This poll is closed

  • 48%
    Wisconsin in a rout
    (113 votes)
  • 33%
    Wisconsin in a squeaker
    (78 votes)
  • 18%
    Tuck Comin’!
    (44 votes)
235 votes total Vote Now

Nebraska Cornhuskers @ Purdue Boilermakers

6:30pm | BTN | Purdue -13 | O/U 58.5

Straight-Up: Purdue 10-4
Against the Spread: Nebraska 13-1

misdreavus79: I don’t think Purdue will languish on offense the way the two other teams Nebraska has beaten did. Purdue 34, Nebraska 28

MaximumSam: Purdue is a good team. Nebraska isn’t. Purdue makes all their games more interesting than they need to be, so 13 is a pretty big number for them. Purdue 30, Nebraska 20.

Dead Read: This one could be downright bizarre. Do I have any good “reasons” why Nebraska can win a night road game against a team with a pulse? No, not really. Fortunately, this is the B1G West, so that does not matter. Going with Nebraska to steal a weird one, simply because I want them to.

Buffkomodo: Purdue because they’re the clear number 2 in the West behind Illinois and they’re certainly more competent than Nebraska....Should Nebraska manage to win this Scott Frost should never coach another FBS game.

BoilerUp89: The spread is too high for Purdue. Mickey Joseph has not lost a conference game yet. Because it is a night game in front of a Purdue crowd that hasn’t had a home game for a few weeks, I’ll take the Boilers to win.

HWAHSQB: 13 points is too big of a spread for any B1G West game that Nern isn’t playing in. Purdue wins, but doesn’t cover.

MNW: The entire West is a clear #2. We need some insanity, and I think Zombie Nebraska is exactly the team to give it to us! (Unfortunately, this will make Gopher fans happy. My wife dressed our child up in a badger onesie today. Life’s full of war crimes.) Huskers, 33-28.

RockyMtnBlue: It’s the West. It’s pure chaos. We can’t even count on jNebby to lose hilariously anymore. I really have no idea so I’ll default into “home team wins a close one.” Purdue 31, Nebraska 28


How bad does Purdue miss Frost?

This poll is closed

  • 36%
    Purdue wins comfortably. Just because Frost is gone doesn’t mean Nebraska is actually good.
    (98 votes)
  • 48%
    Purdue in a close one. Turns out Frosty isn’t the only guy who can coach Nebraska to one-score losses.
    (130 votes)
  • 14%
    Nebraska is BACK, baby! (God help us all)
    (39 votes)
267 votes total Vote Now

Too cowardly to play this week

Rutgers Scarlet Knights

Northwestern Wildcats

(2) Ohio State Buckeyes

Iowa Hawkeyes

misdreavus79: Will Iowa find any semblance of an offense before they play Ohio State? Not that it will matter, but losing 34-10 is a lot better than 59-0.

MaximumSam: Greg Schiano and Pat Fitzgerald are drinking tall boys of High Life and comparing the terms of their contracts, laughing hysterically that they can add another wing to their houses for winning three games. Meanwhile, Ryan Day commits ritual suicide with a buckeye necklace after talking to Brian Ferentz about running an offense. Schiano/Fitzgerald 12, Day/Ferentz 2.

Buffkomodo: I’m not certain that 3 of these 4 teams are helped by rest. Ohio State being the only one who needs to keep players from getting hurt in that statement by the way. The rest? None of them are bowling so it’s really a moot point.

HWAHSQB: Iowa gets extra “coaching” by Brian Ferentz and Rutgers gets extra coaching on offense by ??? They both are losers against Bye.

MNW: Finally, I can get drunk because I want to and not because Northwestern makes me.