The first week of the season showed that the bottom of the league is better than it was last year, while the top still seems pretty strong. Can Purdue keep its newfound offense going? Did Northwestern simply suffer a week one hiccup? How will this week’s B1G games go down? Let’s find out!
Big Ten Week 2 Preview
Ohio (1-0) at Purdue (0-1)
Friday, 8:00 PM at West Lafayette, IN
Line: Purdue -4.0
Purdue surprised me, playing a tough game against a ranked Louisville squad, coming up just short. I think Coach Brohm will keep the Boilermaker offense rolling, and Purdue will improve to 1-1 on the season.
Prediction: Purdue 27, Ohio 20
Florida Atlantic (0-1) at #9 Wisconsin (1-0)
Saturday, 12:00 PM at Madison, WI
Line: Wisconsin -32
Wisconsin showed a lot of rust, which seemed to be a theme for many of the nation’s top teams in week 1. After a tough first half, the Badgers poured it on and won walking away. I don’t think FAU has it in them to challenge Wisconsin, and the Badgers win another romp.
Prediction: Wisconsin 45, Florida Atlantic 7
Cincinnati (1-0) at #8 Michigan (1-0)
Saturday, 12:00 PM at Ann Arbor, MI
Line: Michigan -34
Michigan’s offense looked very pedestrian against a solid Florida defense, but their defense looks like it has simply reloaded. Teams will have to do some serious work to overcome their front seven, and I don’t think Cincinnati has it in them.
Prediction: Michigan 35, Cincinnati 10
Northwestern (1-0) at Duke (1-0)
Saturday, 12:00 PM at Durham, NC
Line: Northwestern -3
Every time I put my faith in Northwestern, they go and look incredibly pedestrian against a Group of 5 team. Meanwhile Duke demolished NC Central. After a year of assuming Northwestern would rally and get better, I’m done picking the Wildcats. The Blue Devils get the win.
Prediction: Duke 31, Northwestern 24
Iowa (1-0) at Iowa State (1-0)
Saturday, 12:00 PM at Ames, IA
Line: Iowa -2.5
Iowa played a very Iowa game against Wyoming, running the ball and playing solid defense en route to a win over Wyoming. I’ll take the Hawkeyes over the Cyclones in an extremely Iowa game.
Prediction: Iowa 21, Iowa State 17
Towson (1-0) at Maryland (1-0)
Saturday, 12:00 PM at College Park, MD
Line: No Line (FCS)
Maryland shocked the world last week, taking down ranked Texas in Austin. The Terps had a few injuries, but I don’t think Towson will be a team that can take advantage of them. Maryland coasts to an easy victory.
Prediction: Maryland 49, Towson 10
Indiana (0-1, 0-1 Big Ten) at Virginia (1-0)
Saturday, 3:30 PM at Charlottesville, VA
Line: Indiana -3
Indiana surprised me, playing up tempo on offense and hanging with Ohio State for three quarters. Virginia still has too much work to do, so I’ll take the Hoosiers by a sizable margin.
Prediction: Indiana 42, Virginia 24
Western Michigan (0-1) at Michigan State (1-0)
Saturday, 3:30 PM at East Lansing, MI
Line: Michigan State -7
Perhaps it was just week one rust that kept USC from demolishing Western Michigan, or perhaps PJ Fleck built a good team before leaving for the B1G. Regardless, I still don’t have faith in Michigan State, and I’m taking the Broncos to upend the Spartans.
Prediction: Western Michigan 28, Michigan State 24
Eastern Michigan (1-0) at Rutgers (0-1)
Saturday, 3:30 PM at Piscataway, NJ
Line: Rutgers -5
Like Indiana, Rutgers hung tough with a top ten opponent before ultimately falling. The Scarlet Knights still have work to do on all sides of the ball, but EMU will allow them to continue working out the kinks. Rutgers gets the win easily.
Prediction: Rutgers 31, Eastern Michigan 17
Nebraska (1-0) at Oregon (1-0)
Saturday, 4:30 PM at Eugene, OR
Line: Oregon -13
Nebraska apparently forgot how to defense last week, which is bad, because Oregon remembered how to offense. I think the Ducks waddle all over Big Red, and Mike Riley’s seat starts to feel a little warm.
Prediction: Oregon 52, Nebraska 31
#5 Oklahoma (1-0) at #2 Ohio State (1-0, 1-0)
Saturday, 7:30 PM at Columbus, OH
Line: Ohio State -7
After seeing how Indiana, a team with good offense and marginal defense, held up against the Buckeyes, I’m actually down on Ohio State at the moment. The Sooners’ offense is more potent than the Hoosiers’, and the defense is just as good, if not better. The Buckeyes still haven’t figured out the long ball, so give me Oklahoma in a mild upset.
Prediction: Oklahoma 35, Ohio State 31
Western Kentucky (1-0) at Illinois (1-0)
Saturday, 8:00 PM at Champaign, IL
Line: Western Kentucky -7.5
Remember how I said the Illini might need a late score to beat lowly Ball State? I said that almost jokingly, as I thought they couldn’t be that bad. Turns out, they are. The Hilltoppers roll into Champaign and blast Illinois, as the Lovie Smith era continues to death spiral.
Prediction: Western Kentucky 45, Illinois 24
Minnesota (1-0) at Oregon State (1-1)
Saturday, 10:00 PM at Corvallis, OR
Line: Oregon State -2
So Minnesota looked pretty bad in a low-scoring win over Buffalo. Conversely, Oregon State got routed by a not-very-good Colorado State, and just barely held on to beat Portland State. With the Beavers as favorites, give me Minnesota to win and hand over that easy money.
Prediction: Minnesota 24, Oregon State 14
BSD Staff Picks
After an opening week that was mostly chalk, Eli has the early lead, having gone a perfect 13-0. The masthead mostly agrees on the games around the league this week, with a handful of exceptions. Clay and I have picked the Blue Devils over the Wildcats, while Cari and I have taken Western Michigan over Michigan State. Garrett was the lone standout picking Eastern Michigan to upend Rutgers, while he and Eli also like Nebraska to defeat Oregon. Garrett, Clay, and I have all picked the Sooners to beat the Buckeyes, while Eli is the only one on the staff to think that the Illini have what it takes to beat the Hilltoppers. What say you, dear reader? Did the masthead get it right?