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Big Ten Preview: Week Four

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Each of the Big Ten conference contests in bloggerific preview.

Leon Halip

Jim Delany insists they keep playing these games, so here we go.

Eastern Michigan @ #11 Michigan State

When: Saturday, 12pm ET

Line: Michigan State -45.5

Over/Under: 52

Rob Bolden Threat Level: Red. Let's get down to brass tacks, Vegas has the line at 45.5 and the over/under at only 52, that would seem to indicate EMU is not very good. Perhaps the former Nittany Lion can change their luck, however the Spartans are a bit stiffer test than Old Dominion. More importantly, the Eagles have another quarterback named Brogan Roback, which sounds entirely made up, I'm operating under the assumption he's a dude in witness protection, hiding where no one would possibly look.

Western Illinois @ Northwestern

When: Saturday, 12pm ET

Line: Off

Over/Under: Off

Pat Fitzgerald wants Northwestern to play tougher? Maybe facing a team called the Leathernecks isn't the most ideal opponent to see next on the schedule. Even against a Division I-AA FCS squad, I'm not sure the Wildcats have enough offense, regardless how tough they play.

Southern Illinois @ Purdue

When: Saturday, 12pm ET

Line: Off

Over/Under: Off

Purdue split earlier match-ups with Directional Michigan, now tries their luck with Directional Illinois. In all honesty, I'd like my chances better against just regular Illinois, because, y'know Beckman. The Boilermakers gave Notre Dame more of a game than I was expecting, watch out for the letdown this week.

Bowling Green @ #19 Wisconsin

When: Saturday, 12pm ET

Line: Wisconsin -27

Over/Under: 63.5

Bowling Green survived battle with the "chaos team," now have to see how well they do against a defense. It's still up in the air whether Wisconsin's offensive issues are resolved, so this game could be far more interesting than their pedigrees would indicate.

Iowa @ Pitt

When: Saturday, 12pm ET

Line: Pitt -7

Over/Under: 46.5

A game of utter misery, why would any subject themselves to this? Seriously, this game seems like it should be a crime. Have we looked at the statutes to be certain?

Maryland @ Syracuse

When: Saturday, 12:30pm ET

Line: Syracuse -2

Over/Under: 53

Neither of these teams have terribly impressive thus far this season, although the Orange handily defeated Maryland last year. Will the dome make it two in a row? Will this classic ACC blood feud continue now that Maryland in the B1G?

Rutgers @ Navy

When: Saturday, 3:30pm ET

Line: Navy -6.5

Over/Under: 54

Respect? Rutgers fans complaining they were disrespected following their loss last week, should learn exactly what is disrespect. This. This is disrespect. Booing and screaming obscenities at the Naval Academy is beyond disgraceful. Fortunately, the Midshipmen won't have to deal with that home.

Utah @ Michigan

When: Saturday, 3:30pm ET

Line: Michigan -3.5

Over/Under: 56

Utah is the chic upset pick this week, their new offensive coordinator has been pushing all the right buttons. Michigan, on the other hand, let a seemingly atrocious Miami (OH) team hang around in the first half. The Utes don't look to fade in the second half, so the Wolverines have their work cut out for them.

San Jose State @ Minnesota

When: Saturday, 4pm ET

Line: Minnesota -10

Over/Under: 52

The lesson from TCU is Minnesota's not ready for primetime yet. Despite all the familiarity between the staffs, the Horned Frogs dispatched the Gophers with ease. Jerry Kill has Minnesota on the upswing, now we'll see how he handles coming off a bad loss against a San Jose State squad that couldn't run with Auburn's uptempo attack. That's not the Gopher's milieu, but maybe Kill throws in a few new wrinkles.

Indiana @ #18 Missouri

When: Saturday, 4pm ET

Line: Missouri -13.5

Over/Under: 71

Never count out the "chaos team." All offense, no defense. Anything can happen in a shootout, even the infallible SEC losing one to wretched B1G.

Texas State @ Illinois

When: Saturday, 4pm ET

Line: Illinois -13

Over/Under: 62.5

Tim Beckman is the gift that keeps on giving, "as you look at that second half, we won." Nevermind the fact Washington was up 38-12 after the first half and only had three passes in the second half, but sure, you won. Illinois, undefeated in second halves this year, looks to have the inside track on the College Football Second Half Playoff this year.

Miami @ #24 Nebraska

When: Saturday, 8pm ET

Line: Nebraska -7.5

Over/Under: 56

This game isn't the last out-of-conference the B1G faces, but it's their last chance to make a good impression of any sort. Miami fans are getting ready to run Al Golden, or at the very least Mark D'Onofrio, off, losing this game won't make his seat any cooler. It's a classic tale of stoppable force vs. moveable object, and Bo Pelini.