Maggiore’s Big 10 Football Picks – Week # 8: YTD 10-5
A 3-0 week 7 brings the record to 10-5 on plays. The opinion picks didn’t fair quite as well. 2 losses drop the opinion record to 7-3 for the year. I look for the dogs to bark in the Big 10 this week. Good luck everyone.
Play of the Week
Penn State (+2.5) over Iowa
The Nittany Lions have turned their season around after a tough 0-2 start. The new coaching staff has done an amazing job preparing this team and I believe that will continue this week at Iowa. The Hawkeyes are coming off an overtime win at Michigan State last week, but the offense has been less than impressive in 2012. Iowa has failed to score 20 points on 3 different occasions this season, and the Penn State defense has been very good all season. I believe that senior quarterback Matt McGloin and the Penn State offense will find a way to put up points and get the outright road win. I will take the points to play it safe. This is a two unit pick. If the line goes back to the key number at +3, this will become a 3 unit pick.
Northwestern (+6) over Nebraska
The Cornhuskers have had two weeks to think about the 63-38 drubbing that Ohio State put on them in Columbus in week 6. A trip to Evanston is not the best way to come back after something like that. Northwestern is a better team than what they are getting credit for. The Wildcats are two late touchdowns from Penn State away from being undefeated. I believe the grass at Ryan Stadium will slow down Taylor Martinez and the Nebraska offense, while Northwestern will use the blueprint Ohio State used to run the ball on the Husker defense. Look for Wildcat running back Vernic Mark to have a big game and, at the very worst, keep Northwestern inside the number. This is a 1 unit play.
Michigan State (+9.5) over Michigan
Michigan State has been a disappointment. The Spartans came into the season with very high expectations, but the quarterback play has not done enough to pick up wins. That said, Michigan State can still play defense. In Sparty’s 3 losses they have given up a total of 5 touchdowns. Last week’s loss to Iowa was ugly, but I am going to chalk that one up to looking ahead to this rivalry game. Michigan State’s other two losses are to top 10 teams in Ohio State and Norte Dame. The Wolverines, on the other hand, have started to play better the past couple of week. However, it is becoming more and more evident that if you can slow down Denard Robinson, you have a pretty good shot to beat Michigan. I look for the Spartan defense to force Robinson to beat them with his arm and I don’t think he is good enough to do that. This is a 1 unit play at 9.5, but it will become a two unit game if the spread hits +10.
Indiana/Navy over 61
Ohio State (-18.5) over Purdue