Big Ten Football Betting: (20) Northwestern Wildcats at (25) Wisconsin Badgers

Justin Jackson and the Wildcats are 10 point underdogs on the road against the Wisconsin Badgers.
Justin Jackson and the Wildcats are 10 point underdogs on the road against the Wisconsin Badgers.

Time: 2:30 PM CT
Spread: WIS -10
Total: 40

Betting odds c/o Bovada

The home team has won the last eight meetings between Northwestern and Wisconsin, and the hosting Badgers are 10-point favorites over Northwestern with the over/under at 40 according to oddsmakers at Bovada. The game will air on the Big Ten Network at 2:30 PM CT.

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Wisconsin is 5-1 in Big Ten play while Northwestern is 4-2 in conference play. Nevertheless, it is the Huskies that are ranked No. 20 while the Badgers are No. 25 in the nation. Wisconsin won 35-6 in the most recent matchup on Oct 12, 2013. Northwestern has not won at Wisconsin since September 2000. Northwestern NC Pat Fitzgerald thinks the winning plan is easy, though: “Don’t turn the ball over, that’s the bottom line,” he said.

Northwestern turned the ball over three straight times last week against Purdue but still beat the Boilermakers 21-14 for its third straight victory. It defeated Purdue and Nebraska the two weeks prior and has not lost since its matchups against ranked Michigan and Iowa.

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QB Clayton Thorson has thrown for 1,259 yards and rushed for 360. His completion ratio is just 52.6 percent, but he has three targets with 200 or more receiving yards on the year, led by Dan Vitale’s 321 yards and three TDs. RB Justin Jackson has 1,033 yards on 226 carries, for 4.6 yards per attempt.

Warren Long has been a good third down option and is averaging six yards per carry with four TDs on the year. Thorson has rushed for five, while Jackson has just two on the season. Jackson has 146 receiving yards on 18 catches.

Wisconsin is hot and has won five straight over Nebraska, Purdue, Illinois, Rutgers and Maryland. Last week was a 31-24 win over the Terrapins on the road. QB Joel Stave threw for 188 yards on 15 of 24 passing with a TD and an INT. The Terrapin backfield did well by committee with 117 rushing yards and a pair of TDs. Joe Schubert led the team in yardage with 57, all on one carry.

Alex Erickson caught five passes for 83 yards, and Dare Ogunbowale had 47 rushing yards on a team high 19 attempts while catching a pass for a TD as well. He has 612 rushing yards on the year and 265 receiving yards, while Erickson has 831 yards on the year and three receiving TDs.

Stave is throwing at a 61 percent clip on the year with 2,162 yard and a 7.40 yard per attempt average.

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