Maggiore’s Big 10 Football Picks – Week # 7: YTD 7-5
We are getting to crunch time in college football. Most teams are nearing or are past the midway point of their seasons and now is when teams start to separate themselves from the pack. Last week’s 2-1/2-0 showing takes us to 7-5 on the season for plays and 7-1 with the opinion picks. Here is week 7.
Play of the Week
Wisconsin (+1) over Purdue
This is a matchup of teams that have not played as advertised so far in 2012. Wisconsin has not shown the offense that I expected in the preseason, but they are showing signs. The Badgers blew a big leading in Lincoln two weeks ago, but rebounded to thrash Illinois last week. Purdue, on the other hand, started the season fairly well and was beginning to gain momentum as the sexy pick to win the Leaders’ division. Then Michigan came to town and ran for over 300 yards and hammered the Boilermakers. I think Wisconsin continues to build a little momentum and becomes the default favorite to win the division. As a dog, the Badgers are a two unit play.
Northwestern (-3.5) over Minnesota
I am not a big fan of laying points on the road, but this number is too short for the difference in talent in this game. Northwestern’s 5 game winning streak (and also their 5 game covering streak) was snapped last week against a surging Penn State team in Happy Valley. The Wildcats are a good football team. Minnesota is coming off a big loss at Iowa and I think the schedule is going to start to catch up to the Gophers. Kain Colter and the Wildcats will go into Minnesota and get a Big Ten road win. 1 unit play on Northwestern.
Ohio State/Indiana over 63.5
Coming into 2012, Ohio State had played in 3 games that went over 63.5 in the last 5 years. They have 2 games like that this season and another that got to 63. These are not Jim Tressel’s Buckeyes. Urban Meyer has OSU playing a very fast pace and lighting up scoreboards. However, it normally takes two teams to cover an over. Indiana is the perfect team to help that happen. The Hoosier can score and struggle to keep teams from scoring. Ohio State has struggled this season stopping spread teams that push the passing game. I look for Ohio State to put up 45+ and the Hoosiers to chip in at least 3 TD’s. Unless the Buckeyes learned how to tackle in the last 6 days, this one soars over. 1 unit on this total.
Ohio State (-17.5) over Indiana
Michigan/Illinois over 48.5