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The B1G Preview And Degenerate Challenge: All Big Ten Teams In Action

With all 14 Big Ten teams playing this week, there’s a lot to choose from!

Iowa senior linebacker Seth Benson, left, poses for a photo with South Dakota State senior tight end Zach Heins after Iowa’s 7-3 win over the Jackrabbits during a NCAA football game on Saturday, Sept. 3, 2022, at Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City. Bryon Houlgrave/The Register / USA TODAY NETWORK

Penn State escapes! Indiana has already eclipsed its conference win total from a season ago! The Big Ten is undefeated in conference play! Week 1 of the season provided plenty of drama and a variety of pretty good games to go along with the snooze fest that usually accompanies early season sacrifices around the country.

Some teams overachieved (hi Rutgers), others found a way to look even worse than they already did (Jesus Iowa), but, all in all, the first full week of the season gave us plenty to enjoy.

With all 14 teams in play, week two should start painting the picture of what to expect from the Big Ten, with another mix of sacrifices and possibly exciting games on the horizon.

The Games


Western Illinois Leathernecks (0-1) at Minnesota Golden Gophers (1-0)

12:00 PM Eastern, B1G Network
Line TBD

Some early lines have this set at 37.5, which is right about what last week’s game against New Mexico State was. That’s all you need to know about this game.

Should you Watch? No, you’re busy with other commitments
Prediction: Minnesota 45, Western Illinois 7

Arkansas State Red Wolves (1-0) at No. 3 Ohio State Buckeyes

12:00 PM Eastern, B1G Network
Ohio State -44.5

Jaxon Smith-Njigba might not play in this game, which takes the margin of victory from 60 points to about 50. I don’t see this going well for Arkansas State, especially after scoring only 21 points last week, albeit against a much better opponent.

Should you watch? No, you’re busy.
Prediction: Ohio State 54, Arkansas State 7

Duke Blue Devils (1-0) at Northwestern Wildcats (1-0, 1-0 Big Ten)

12:00 PM Eastern, FS1
Northwestern -10

Why does Vegas keep making Northwestern a favorite in this game? The Wildcats have lost to Duke three straight times, with the last win coming in 2016. Each loss is a little worse than the one before, and while Northwestern looked pretty good against Nebraska, I don’t know that they’re 10 whole points better than the Blue Devils at this juncture. I still think they’ll win, but I’m not ready to tab the Wildcats as double-digit favorites just yet.

Should you watch? If Penn State/Ohio gets out of hand early, maybe flip back and forth here.
Prediction: Northwestern 28, Duke 21

Ohio Bobcats (1-0) at Penn State Nittany Lions (1-0, 1-0 Big Ten)

12:00 PM Eastern, ABC
Penn State -25.5

Line has moved in favor of the Nittany Lions by about a point and a half, so the public seems to view the Purdue win in a positive light. Speaking to Penn State fans might have you think the Nittany Lions got blown out, however.

I’m interested in seeing whether Drew Allar plays the full fourth quarter, or whether the Nittany Lions can put Ohio away early enough to give Allar more than a quarter’s worth of action.

Should you watch? Yes, you’re a Penn State fan!
Prediction: Penn State 56, Ohio 17

Washington State Cougars (1-0) at No. 19 Wisconsin Badgers (1-0)

3:30 PM Eastern, Fox
Wisconsin -17.5

Wisconsin looked great against an overmatched opponent last week, but that opponent was able to move the ball on them. I don’t expect the Badgers to lose this one, but 17 and a half points may be a bit of an overreaction to beating a pretty bad FCS team a week ago.

Should you watch? May be the most interesting game in this slot.
Prediction: Wisconsin 31, Washington State 17

Maryland Terrapins (1-0) at Charlotte 49ers (0-2)

3:30 PM Eastern, TBD
Line TBD

Maryland is yet again traveling to a group of 5 opponent, this time it’s Charlotte. The 49ers are bad enough that they shouldn’t actually lose this one. In fact, Charlotte is bad enough that Maryland should easily cover this massive spread, should they choose to.

Should you watch? Only if the game is close.
Prediction: Maryland 49, Charlotte 14

Akron Zips (1-0) at No. 14 Michigan State Spartans (1-0)

4:00 PM Eastern, B1G Network
Michigan State -34.5

Akron is most certainly not as good as Western Michigan, so I do expect this to get out of hand pretty quickly. But, at the same time, let’s remember that the Broncos were within a score of Michigan State in the fourth quarter before the Spartans tacked on a couple of scores. I expect former Penn State offensive coordinator Joe Moorhead to have a few tricks up his sleeve.

Should you watch? If only to support a former coach.
Prediction: Michigan State 35, Akron 10

Iowa State Cyclones (1-0) at Iowa Hawkeyes (1-0)

4:00 PM Eastern, B1G Network
Iowa -3.5

Iowa seems to look like garbage the week before Iowa State every single year, only to find a way to beat the Cyclones no matter the quality of each respective team. I can’t in good conscience say that what we saw from the Hawkeyes last week can be seen as anything other than “Iowa does not have an offense.”

Sure, some players are hurt, but getting those players back isn’t going to make the abomination we saw last week suddenly turn into a competent affair. I’d like to believe this is their punishment for what they did last season. Maybe don’t boo injured players next time!

Should you watch? Only if you’re a sicko of the highest degree.
Prediction: Iowa 6, Iowa State 3

Virginia Cavaliers (1-0) at Illinois Fighting Illini (1-1, 0-1 Big Ten)

4:00 PM Eastern, ESPNU
Illinois -4.5

Virginia blew the doors off Illinois last season, but this Virginia team does not seem equipped to do that again under a new head coach, with what they lost, and on the road. Look for Illinois to repay the favor here.

Should you watch? Yes. This could be a sneaky good game.
Prediction: Illinois 21, Virginia 10

Indiana State Sycamores (1-0) at Purdue Boilermakers (0-1, 0-1 Big Ten)

4:00 PM Eastern, B1G Network
Line TBD

Purdue looked good last week, so expect this one to get out of hand pretty quickly.

Should you watch? No.
Prediction: Purdue 56, Indiana State 14

Wagner Seahawks (0-1) at Rutgers Scarlet Knights (1-0)

4:00 PM Eastern, B1G Network
Line TBD

Another FCS opponent for a Big Ten team. Like the other three, don’t expect this game to be close for long.

Should you watch? No
Prediction: Rutgers 49, Wagner 17

Georgia Southern Eagles (1-0) at Nebraska Cornhuskers (1-1, 0-1 Big Ten)

7:30 PM Eastern, FS1
Nebraska -23.5

This is the last tune up for the Cornhuskers before things get real. Look for Nebraska to work out any remaining kinks as Oklahoma looms. Unlike last week, I do think Nebraska should be able to cover in this one. Whether they will is a different story.

Should you watch? No
Prediction: Nebraska 33, Georgia Southern 17

Hawai’i Rainbow Warriors (0-2) at No. 4 Michigan Wolverines (1-0)

8:00 PM Eastern, B1G Network
Michigan -51.5

Vanderbilt beat Hawai’i by 53 two weeks ago. Western Kentucky beat them by 32. This Rainbow Warriors team is simply not good. They might be worse than both UMass and New Mexico State!

All that said, 52 points is a lot for anyone to clear.

Should you watch? No
Prediction: Michigan 63, Hawai’i 14

Idaho Vandals (0-1) at Indiana Hoosiers (1-0, 1-0 Big Ten)

4:00 PM Eastern, B1G Network
Line TBD

Idaho continues to be pretty bad at football. Indiana already showed they aren’t going to be as dismal as they were a year ago. You put two and two together.

Should you watch? No
Prediction: Indiana 55, Idaho 7

The Picks

Picks Table

Writer Straight Up Against The Spread Score (road team) Score (home team)
Writer Straight Up Against The Spread Score (road team) Score (home team)
Northestern at Iowa (-11)
Bennett Iowa Northwestern 10 15
Dylan Iowa Iowa 3 21
Eli Northwestern Northwestern 3 0
Jared Iowa Northwestern 9 18
Lando Iowa Iowa 20 34
Marty Iowa Northwestern 9 10
Tim Iowa Iowa 7 20
Rutgers at Minnesota (-14)
Bennett Minnesota Rutgers 13 24
Dylan Minnesota Rutgers 20 16
Eli Minnesota Rutgers 16 23
Jared Minnesota Rutgers 17 24
Lando Minnesota Minnesota 17 34
Marty Minnesota Rutgers 20 23
Tim Minnesota Minnesota 13 28
Illinois (-7.5) at Nebraska
Bennett Illinois Illinois 27 13
Dylan Illinois Nebraska 38 31
Eli Nebraska Nebraska 20 23
Jared Illinois Nebraska 20 14
Lando Illinois Illinois 31 21
Marty Illinois Nebraska 24 20
Tim Illinois Illinois 31 21
Michigan State at Michigan (-22.5)
Bennett Michigan Michigan 10 38
Dylan Michigan Michigan 13 49
Eli Michigan Michigan State 13 33
Jared Michigan Michigan State 20 37
Lando Michigan Michigan State 21 38
Marty Michigan Michigan 10 35
Tim Michigan Michigan State 17 38
Ohio State (-15.5) at Penn State
Bennett Ohio State Penn State 37 23
Dylan Ohio State Penn State 35 24
Eli Penn State Penn State 56 17
Jared Ohio State Penn State 38 24
Lando Ohio State Penn State 35 21
Marty Ohio State Penn State 42 28
Tim Ohio State Penn State 37 27
Picks for each Big Ten game ordered by game and picker.