My record stands at 50-9, but it is keeping its head just above water in the last month…so it’s time to string together some great weeks. It begins with week eight….let’s take a look at what is happening in Delanyland.
Minnesota (4-2, 0-2) @ Northwestern (4-2, 0-2) Noon ESPN2: The Gophers lead the all-time series vs the Wildcats 50-33-5. They are 1-2 in their last three meetings in Evanston, but the Wildcats have won the last three games. Jerry Kill has taken a leave of absence to try to give his body some rest…probably a pretty good call to err on the side of caution here. The Gophers ran into a buzz saw (at the time) in the Hawkeyes and haven’t really recovered. They got beat up at home and have been on the road ever since. I don’t know if they have the stuff to go into Ryan Field and beat a Northwestern team that has been shown what they are made of and where they stand in the Big Ten pecking order. These are two teams that are in desperate need of winning this football game…I am going with the Wildcats to get off the ground first and use the home field to help them. I am going to say that this will be a fun game to watch…lots of scoring…by Northwestern. Wildcats bounce back and beat Minnesota 41-20.
Purdue (1-5, 0-2) @ Michigan State (5-1, 2-0) Noon Big Ten Network: Michigan State leads the all-time series vs Purdue 33-27-3. The Spartans have won the last four meetings..the Boilermakers are 2-2 in its last four games in East Lansing. If Michigan State loses this game, this would be the biggest upset in the Big Ten in many years. Some of that may go to me deeming the Spartans as the odds on favorite to win the Legends. Some of it may be from me also deeming Purdue as one of the worst Big Ten teams in recent memory…How can Purdue beat the Spartans this week?…execute a perfect game plan. Could it happen?…yes. Will it happen?….no, not even close. This one will be over in the first half. Michigan State wins 35-7.
Indiana (3-3, 1-1) @ Michigan (5-1, 1-1) 3:30pm Big Ten Network: The Wolverines lead the all-time series vs Indiana 52-9…Michigan has won the last 17 meetings and 32 of the last 33. IU has lost 16 straight games in Ann Arbor. The last time the Hoosiers won in Ann Arbor was in 1967. Michigan will be back to Ann Arbor for this one so the odds are in favor of Brady Hoke winning this football game. I am not going to go against that…I do however think it again will come down to the last seven or eight minutes of the game. I believe that Al Borges will spend the majority of the first half trying to establish a running game when there is none to speak of..(UM is 9th in the Big Ten)…but Devin Gardner will win this game for Michigan…and perhaps I believe the Michigan defense will rise up…Jake Ryan will cause a fumble…so will Frank Clark…that will be the difference….Michigan beats Indiana 56-50. Read the full game preview here: Indiana at Michigan
Iowa (4-2, 1-1) @ #4 Ohio State (6-0, 2-0) 3:30pm ABC: Ohio State leads the all-time series vs Iowa 46-14-3. The Bucks have won the last four meetings, 13 of the last 14 meetings and haven’t lost to the Hawkeyes in Columbus since 1991 (6 straight). Don’t be surprised to see Iowa leading this game at some point in the first half. Both teams coming off a bye week, OSU has probably been at home or in tattoo parlors across beautiful downtown Columbus having someone read them their press clippings. Iowa has been off too and I remind you that they had a bye week after six games last year…and they were 4-2 just like this season. They lost their last six games. I like Iowa to hang around…Ferentz generally doesn’t get blown out in these games…I like the Buckeyes to win on Saturday, but it will be closer than most think. OSU wins 31-21.
#25 Wisconsin (4-2, 2-1) @ Illinois (3-2, 0-1) 8:00pm Big Ten Network: This series is dead even…36-36-7 with Illinois holding an edge in Memorial Stadium 20-15-3. The Badgers have won the last three meetings, seven of the last eight and 13 of the last 16. They have also won three of the last four in Champana. There is a chance this Badger team is a little tired. Their last two road games have been huge. They just blew out a pretty good Northwestern team in front of a homecoming crowd in Madison…I am guessing that Wisconsin might be caught a little off guard this week. Illinois is one of the better offensive teams in the conference so it wouldn’t surprise me to see them put up a few points before the Badgers wake up. The main factor will be to remember that Illinois is also one of the worst defensive teams in the Big Ten as well..11th against both the pass and the run. I think this one will be closer than most think..until Wisconsin gets the running game going…and that might not take as long as you think. Badgers beat Illinois 43-24.
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