Thursday, September 26, 2013

Big Ten Weekend Preview

Your first reaction, might be what the heck is going on this weekend?  How can there be 4 games with Big Ten games in it?  Why is Illinois and Purdue still playing non-conference games?

There is two reasons for a ton of byes this week.  First and foremost this is the reaction to a number of years ago when it was clear the other conferences were still playing and the Big Ten was home watching and everyone was forgetting about the league.    So the Big Ten made sure they are still playing after Thanksgiving which equals a late September bye.    In the future, this will probably be the spot for the 9th Big Ten game.

Big Ten Game of the Week

Wisconsin at Ohio State:  It's really hard to tell what either of these teams are.   They both have played a bunch of "body bag" games and they both traveled to average to poor PAC 12 teams.   Wisconsin lost when the PAC 12 referees started their 3 Stooges performance.  OSU just rolled CAL and didn't look back.  Both programs have new coaches, Urban was with Ohio State last year but didn't get to play past the Michigan game because "they were bad".   I'm sorry but I couldn't pick the Wisconsin coach out of a line up. 

Ohio State can't decided with QB to play and might play two.  One guy rolled all the dead bodies and the other is a bit banged up but has big game experience.   Doesn't seem like there is a bad choice here.  Both teams will want to run to win and we know Urban will take some deep shots.   Playing is the Shoe is the big difference as the Buckeyes are a 7 point favorite.  This game score will look closer then it really is and OSU will control the game.  OSU 24  Wisconsin 14 (ABC 8:00)

Iowa at Minnesota:  Talk about not knowing either team?  Minnesota continues to be concerned with their head coaches health but continues to win.  Iowa on the other hand, starts the year with a loss to a good Northern Illinois team at home and then scores 59 points against Western Michigan last weekend.   Minnesota's hallmark win so far this year is over UNLV.  So who knows?  Hopefully, the Michigan coaches will be watching this game closely because they have Minnesota next week and travel to Iowa later in the year.  This game barley has a line with Iowa -1.   Iowa 20 Minnesota 17 (ABC/ESPN2 3:30)

Miami, Ohio at Illinois:  This is a strange game as it feels we should all be playing Big Ten football now.  Illinois is coming off the loss to UCLA and is a 25 favorite.   Illinois 41 Miami, OH 10 (Noon BTN)

Northern Illinois at Purdue:  Remember that good team I spoke about beating Iowa?  Well, they get a chance to get another win against a Big Ten team this weekend.  They are even favored on the road!  Yes, a MAC Team is favored at a Big Ten school, Northern Illinois is -3.5.  Purdue played well against ND but it looks like ND might be headed to a 3 or 4 loss season..   I would assume the Boilermakers are getting better and will make this a game.  Northern Illinois 28 Purdue 21 (Noon BTN)

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