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Big Ten Football Week 8 Schedule, Picks, Previews, and Predictions

In the Obligatory Predictions Competition, we ask if the Boilers can break their Badger dick, the Terps can break an all-time futility mark, and if Ohio State runs it up on Iowa. Oh, and the lamest white-out ever in Happy Valley.

Northwestern Wildcats vs Purdue Boilermakers
From the last time Purdue beat Wisconsin
Photo by Sandra Dukes/Getty Images

My phone reminded me, this morning, of what I was doing five years ago today.

I had flown from Boston—a two-week research trip wherein I also flew to Maryland to watch the ‘Cats beat the Terps—to Evanston, where I saw one of my favorite sights: Iowa fans leaving Ryan Field.

Just look at that. All those yokels, having congratulated themselves on paying money to fill out Ryan Field, having to do the wheezy shuffle back to their sad lives elsewhere.

That’s what usually made being a Northwestern fan so much fun. And I still resent our head coach for being such a stubborn prick that we won’t get to see that at all this year.

The Picks

(all times CT)

Saturday, Oct 22

Iowa Hawkeyes @ (2) Ohio State Buckeyes

11:00am | FOX | Ohio State -29 | O/U 49

Straight-Up: All Deathstar (is it ever otherwise?)
Against the Spread: Deathstar 9-4

MaximumSam: I still have flashbacks to 2017, when Iowa put up 55 on OSU in a rout. It made no sense and continues to make no sense. Still, Iowa actually scored points in a few other games that season, including 56 on Nebraska. Hard to say how many points Iowa scores this year that would equally shocking. 21? 28? Probably won’t be enough, whatever it is. Ohio State 31, Iowa 13.

WSR: tOSU isn’t like your standard B1G West team in they don’t subscribe to the formula of “if we punt, they’ll punt and we can keep pushing them back until they make a mistake and our defense will do something with it and we can eventually get a FG.” If they can’t beat you through the air, we’ve seen that they can grind you out through the run. And the defense will take advantage of Iowa’s “offense.” It’ll get ugly, and I’ll smile quite a bit about it.

BoilerUp89: I believe OSU will score more than 30 points which means they will cover.

misdreavus79: 30 points on a non-Rutgers game seems like a lot. Shit, Michigan State only got 27! Ohio State 34, Iowa 10

RockyMtnBlue: Can Iowa’s myriad of zones slow down the ridiculous OSU passing game? Of course they can’t. Don’t be silly. Ohio State 44, Iowa 3

MNW: Normally taking Iowa to cover here would be a no-brainer. First, Phil Parker lives to scheme against this defense; second, Kirk Ferentz will sit on the ball and keep it close by limiting Ohio State’s possessions—think how Rutgers beat the spread.

That’s right, Iowa fans: we’re at the point where you’re getting compared to Rutgers. And you can’t argue it. Ohio State, 45-10.


Awful offensive coaches vs awfully offensive coaches

This poll is closed

  • 73%
    The deathstar deathstars.
    (231 votes)
  • 18%
    The Iowa defense keeps it close-ish
    (59 votes)
  • 8%
    Iowa wins. Brian gets a contract extension.
    (26 votes)
316 votes total Vote Now

Indiana Hoosiers @ Rutgers Scarlet Knights

11:00am | BTN | Rutgers -3 | O/U 45

Straight-Up: Indiana 10-3
Against the Spread: No middles

Only west fans believe in Rutgers. The rest of us know.

MaximumSam: Ugh. I don’t have a great sense of this game. Rutgers couldn’t score on Nebraska, which makes me think they can’t score on anybody. They did change coordinators, so maybe they will look slightly improved. I have this as a slow motion pillow fight, and Tom Allen can swing a pillow. Indiana 17, Rutgers 15.

HWAHSQB: This is exactly the sicko type of game I want to watch while Bert is out on the recruiting trail. Who cares who wins? We all win by getting to watch this slugfest. And by slugfest, I mean a fight between two slugs.

WSR: I have no idea. I think Rutgers wins because Indiana is bad, but Rutgers may not be good either. It’s not going to be a good football game, but it could be fun because of the stupidity.

BoilerUp89: On the one hand, Schiano has yet to win a conference home game. On the other hand, Hoosier fans are asking how big Allen’s buyout is. Flip a coin.

misdreavus79: I have no idea. Indiana 27, Rutgers 24

RockyMtnBlue: Indiana has been kinda bad and a lot weird. Rutgers has been kinda weird and a lot bad. I want to watch this game and shitpost all day but I feel bad for both fanbases. Indiana 13, Rutgers 6

MNW: I would’ve taken Indiana in this one, but BuffKomodo’s look at the Tom Allen tenure has me down on the Hoosiers:

Actually, now I’m distracted by Rutgers’ Passion Puddle. Because...uh...

Indiana’s season isn’t over yet—but a loss this weekend would sure convince me that Tom Allen’s time is up. And I think Greg Schiano, having fired OC Sean Gleeson a couple weeks ago, is a more desperate man. Rutgers, 25-19.


The all-important showdown for 6th place in the East. Dozens of people will see:

This poll is closed

  • 36%
    Rutgers covers! Fire the cannon!
    (88 votes)
  • 25%
    Rutgers wins by less than 3. Fire the cannon!
    (63 votes)
  • 37%
    Indiana wins. And it isn’t even a basketball game!
    (92 votes)
243 votes total Vote Now

Purdue Boilermakers @ Wisconsin Badgers

2:30pm | ESPN | Wisconsin -2.5 | O/U 52

Straight-Up: Purdue 8-5
Against the Spread: No middles

8 of 13 OTE “writers” picking Purdue to win outright in Madison. The end is nigh.

MaximumSam: Wisconsin is favored? Did the oddsmakers watch any of their games? Purdue 28, Wisconsin 20.

HWAHSQB: AOC has failed in his two previous tries against Wiscy including last year against Mertz who only needed 5 completions on 8 attempts to win in West Lafayette. They are in Camp Randall this year and that along with historical precedent have me picking the Badgers.

WSR: Let’s see if wisconsin is somehow more trash than I previously thought. I don’t have a ton of confidence in their defense to have a chance, but I’m also interested to see how the Purdue defense handles things.

BoilerUp89: See my article from earlier this week. wisconsin wins.

misdreavus79: This isn’t your grandmother’s Wisconsin walking through that door. Actually your grandmother’s Wisconsin might be worse than this one, so scratch that. Purdue 33, Wisconsin 13

RockyMtnBlue: In college football some teams just have another team’s number, no matter how inferior they are (lookin’ at you little brother). Wisconsin owns Purdue. Wisconsin really owns Purdue at Camp Randall. And yet... Purdue 27, Wisconsin 21

MNW: I’ll believe it when I see it.

I’ll believe it when I see it.

I’ll believe it when I see it.

Prove me wrong, Trains. badgers, 24-21.


Trains vs Rodents

This poll is closed

  • 39%
    Wisconsin always beats Purdue. Only a fool bets otherwise.
    (121 votes)
  • 4%
    I’m middling a 2.5pt spread because I’m super brave (or just a State grad)
    (13 votes)
  • 56%
    Graham Mertz vs Aiden O’Connell. Purdue wins because even Camp Randall Voodoo Magic can’t overcome that matchup.
    (173 votes)
307 votes total Vote Now

Northwestern Wildcats @ Maryland Terrapins

2:30pm | BTN | Maryland -13.5 | O/U 52

Straight-Up: Maryland 11-2
Against the Spread: Maryland 8-5

MaximumSam: I’m assuming Taulia won’t play for Maryland, doesn’t change the fact that Northwestern sucks, but may umpact the final score. Maryland 24, Northwestern 14.

HWAHSQB: No amount of “coaching' from Locksley can make the Terps derp this game badly enough to lose, but they can screw up enough to allow a Nern cover.

WSR: I object to this “football game” taking place on humanitarian grounds.

BoilerUp89: Maryland should win, but without Taulia I’m not sure they cover.

misdreavus79: The dream is dead. Maryland 47, Northwestern 17

RockyMtnBlue: I’ve heard Taulia is a game time decision. It really didn’t look like that when he went down. Can Maryland win a game with something called Billy Edwards Jr playing QB the whole way? Normally I’d say ‘no’, but this is Northwestern we’re talking about. Maryland 20, Northwestern 10

MNW: Ahem. Northwestern has never lost to Maryland:

I refuse to accept it could happen until it does. ‘Cats, 23-17.


Kittens vs Turtles. Awwww.

This poll is closed

  • 55%
    Maryland covers. Lord NW sucks.
    (147 votes)
  • 38%
    Maryland wins but NW covers. Lord this matchup sucks.
    (102 votes)
  • 6%
    Northwestern wins. Lord Maryland sucks even more than Northwestern!
    (18 votes)
267 votes total Vote Now

Minnesota Golden Gophers @ (16) Penn State Nittany Lions

6:30pm | ABC | Penn State -5 | O/U 44.5

Straight-Up: Penn State 11-2
Against the Spread: Penn State 8-5

MaximumSam: Honestly, I don’t know what to make of these teams. They both seemed pretty good to start the season, and both got hogtied and thrown in the river in their last game. Will Tanner Morgan or Drew Allar play? Does it matter?

I’m probably biased because I watched Penn State getting paved and didn’t see Minny get thumped. Minnesota 17, Penn State 14.

HWAHSQB: Both teams got wholloped last go round, but only Franklin’s PSU teams have a pattern of laying down and tolling over in games following their first loss. Minnesota wins straight up.

WSR: Monday night I was in Frisco and watched the Loons lose in penalty kicks to FC Dallas. Saturday night I will be in Happy Valley and will probably be watching the Gophers lose to Penn State. That’s just how I work right now.

BoilerUp89: Well Purdue played both and Penn State was clearly the better team. I wouldn’t be shocked to see the Nittany Lions roll over and go to sleep, but Minnesota hasn’t played well in nearly a month.

misdreavus79: Dear god if they lose this game. Penn State 35, Minnesota 21

RockyMtnBlue: It’s just barely possible Penn State isn’t as good as I thought they were this time last week. On the one hand, Minnesota brings their power run game to play a team that got smoked by a power run game last week. On the other hand, it’s Minnesota. Already without their best WR, and maybe without their QB, too? Also, Peej is still their coach, right? Just checking. Penn State 24, Minnesota 17

MNW: I don’t think Minnesota is the kind of team to be cowed by the white-out in Happy Valley, and the Gophers should be able to run the ball a little bit on the Nittany Lions.

Then again, in a battle of backup quarterbacks—which is what this might be—you might see Minnesota needing to throw itself outta the occasional jam on 3rd and distance...and my God, the PJ Fleck-era Gophers are miserable when the boats aren’t running on time. One too many mistakes trips ‘em up. Nittany Lions, 17-10.


Coach Slogan vs Coach Hype

This poll is closed

  • 52%
    It’s a whiteout game. Penn State covers.
    (142 votes)
  • 31%
    Penn State wins a close one. Literally no one involved leaves the stadium satisfied.
    (85 votes)
  • 16%
    Boat Rowers with the upset!
    (46 votes)
273 votes total Vote Now

Too cowardly to play this week

(18) Illinois Fighting Illini

(4) Michigan Wolverines

Michigan State Spartans

Nebraska Cornhuskers

misdreavus79: Football gods, if you exist, make Michigan State beat Michigan. We need this football gods!

RockyMtnBlue: Dude. Dafuc we do to you? We TRIED to keep you in the game! We led by only 2 when the first downs were 18-1. May the fleas of a thousand camels flock in your underpants.

MNW: I’m already tired of ranked Illinois.