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The B1G Preview & BSD Challenge: Nittany Lions Go On The Road

Last full week of non-conference games plus the Nittany Lions go on the road at Illinois.

Penn State Nittany Lions running back Trey Potts (23) runs with the ball during the fourth quarter against the Delaware Fightin’ Blue Hens at Beaver Stadium. Matthew O’Haren-USA TODAY Sports

Week 2 is in the books! Just about all of us picked Wisconsin to ultimately win their game against Washington State. We should have known better. On the other hand, everyone other than me correctly picked Colorado with the cover, so I’ll just carry that L for a while. Onward!

Friday, September 15

700 PM

Virginia (0-2) vs. Maryland (2-0)

MD -14.5 | O/U 48 | FS1

Virginia may actually be worse than Charlotte, so them only getting 14.5 points in this game quite surprising. The Cavaliers were handled by Tennessee then lost to James Madison, so, unless Maryland isn’t actually ready to “compete for championships,” this game should get out of hand pretty quickly.

Should you watch? It’s worth a look to see if Maryland Marylands
Prediction: Maryland 37, Virginia 14

Saturday, September 16

12:00 PM

No. 7 Penn State (2-0) vs. Illinois (1-1)

PSU -14.5 | O/U 48.5 | FOX

Four things you need to know about this game:

  1. The Big Ten West does not care about non-conference games. They effectively use them as their pre-season, and would happily give up a win there if it means gaining one in conference play. So if they lose a game or two, so be it. Case in point, Northwestern went 0-3 in the non-conference in 2018 and still won the West. So, don’t look at the Kansas and Toledo results to try and determine what will happen in this game.
  2. Illinois was dead in the water two years ago, then they changed their offensive philosophy “overnight” right before the Penn State game, and, well, you know the rest. Expect some wrinkles we haven’t seen yet.
  3. Drew Allar is doing a lot better than we expected through two games, but this will be his first road game, against a conference opponent, who, as mentioned in 1 above, will happily go 0-3 in non-conference play if it means beating a top team in the East.
  4. James Franklin does not forget.

Should you watch? I’d question your fandom if you don’t.
Prediction: Penn State 56, Illinois 17

Louisville (2-0) vs. Indiana (1-1)

LOU -10.0 | O/U 50.5 | B1G Network

This tape should be familiar to all you fine Indiana folks. A Jeff Brohm offense rolls into [not Bloomington] and drops 7 million points while the Hoosiers try to keep up. Can the new, triple option-y offense Indiana has employed so far this season do enough to prevent the onslaught?

Should you watch? You’re occupied.
Prediction: Louisville 23, Indiana 13

Georgia Southern (2-0) vs. Wisconsin (1-1)

WIS -19.5 | O/U 64.5 | B1G Network

Georgia Southern isn’t bad, but they’re also not Washington State. And Wisconsin is at home. It might look like the Buffalo game, but they’ll cover eventually.

Should you watch? You’re busy.
Prediction: Wisconsin 35, Georgia Southern 10

3:30 PM

Minnesota (2-0) vs. No. 20 North Carolina (2-0)

UNC -8.0 | O/U 50 | ESPN

North Carolina nearly fooled everyone into thinking they had a defense against South Carolina. Then came Appalachian State and burned a hole through them. Minnesota, on the other hand, won’t try to get into a shootout with them. They will be quite glad to do to the Tar Heels what Navy did to Notre Dame in 2016.

Should you watch? It should be a fun game if Minnesota’s defense comes to play.
Prediction: Minnesota 21, North Carolina 17

Northwestern (1-1) vs. No. 21 Duke (2-0)

DUKE -18.5 | O/U 48.5 | ACCN

With their one win out of the way, the Wildcats can resume the losing.

Should you watch? No.
Prediction: Duke 42, Northwestern 7

Western Michigan (1-1) vs. No. 25 Iowa (2-0)

IOWA -28.5 | O/U 42.5 | B1G Network

So Vegas is expecting Iowa to not only score 29 points, but to hold their opponent to zero? Bold strategy Cotton!

Should you watch? The Ferentz Line™ is appointment television.
Prediction: Iowa 24, Western Michigan 3

Virginia Tech (1-1) vs. Rutgers (2-0)

RUTG -7.0 | O/U 38 | B1G Network

Well the Hokies already lost to one Big Ten team, will they lose to another?

Should you watch? No.
Prediction: Rutgers 20, Virginia Tech 17

4:00 PM

Western Kentucky (2-0) vs. No. 6 Ohio State (2-0)

OSU -29.0 | O/U 64 | FOX

There’s a 4 PM slot because games on Fox take that long.

Should you watch? Only to see if Ohio State can finally break 40.
Prediction: Ohio State 42, Western Kentucky 20

5:00 PM

No. 8 Washington (2-0) vs. Michigan State (2-0)

WASH -16.0 | O/U 55.5 | Peacock

This was going to be a beatdown before, now it’s just going to be sad to watch.

Should you watch? I guess if you’re into that sort of thing.
Prediction: Washington 55, Michigan State 22

7:00 PM

Northern Illinois (1-1) vs. Nebraska (0-2)

NEB -11.5 | O/U 43 | FS1

How bad is Boston College? The Huskies beat the Eagles two weeks ago, then came home and lost to Southern Illinois last week. Nebraska will need to dial the inner Scott Frost to 100 to lose this one.

Should you watch? If you’re curious about whether Nebraska can grasp defeat from the jaws of victory once more, tune in!
Prediction: Nebraska 35, Northern Illinois 10

7:30 PM

Bowling Green (1-1) vs. No. 2 Michigan (2-0)

MICH -40.5 | O/U 53.5 | B1G Network

The Vegas line has increased with each game, but the margin of victory has gotten smaller. Maybe, I don’t know, don’t give Bowling Green 40 and a half points when Michigan isn’t planning to score more than 30?

Should you watch? No
Prediction: Michigan 42, Bowling Green 10

Syracuse (2-0) vs. Purdue (1-1)

SYR -2.5 | O/U 57.5 | NBC

I’m sure Purdue is foaming at the mouth to avenge last year’s loss, one that they didn’t have to lose.

Should you watch? Yes.
Prediction: Purdue 28, Syracuse 21

The Picks

Big Ten Picks

Writer Spread Straight up Away Team Score Home Team Score
Writer Spread Straight up Away Team Score Home Team Score
Bennett Florida Atlantic Illinois 16 27
Chris Illinois Illinois 14 38
Colin Illinois Illinois 14 31
Jared Florida Atlantic Illinois 17 28
Lando Illinois Illinois 10 28
Marty Illinois Illinois 10 26
Tim Illinois Illinois 17 35
Will Illinois Illinois 3 30
Bennett Akron Indiana 17 31
Chris Indiana Indiana 17 37
Colin Indiana Indiana 3 28
Jared Indiana Indiana 10 31
Lando Indiana Indiana 14 35
Marty Akron Indiana 14 27
Tim Indiana Indiana 7 38
Will Indiana Indiana 13 34
Bennett Michigan Michigan 10 38
Chris Rutgers Michigan 14 27
Colin Michigan Michigan 14 41
Jared Rutgers Michigan 16 34
Lando Rutgers Michigan 17 38
Marty Rutgers Michigan 14 35
Tim Michigan Michigan 10 38
Will Rutgers Michigan 14 31
Bennett Maryland Maryland 34 17
Chris Maryland Maryland 35 14
Colin Maryland Maryland 34 10
Jared Maryland Maryland 35 21
Lando Maryland Maryland 31 14
Marty Maryland Maryland 31 14
Tim Maryland Maryland 35 17
Will Michigan State Maryland 24 21
Bennett Louisiana Tech Nebraska 17 34
Chris Louisiana Tech Nebraska 17 35
Colin Nebraska Nebraska 7 38
Jared Louisiana Tech Nebraska 17 30
Lando Nebraska Nebraska 7 28
Marty Louisiana Tech Nebraska 14 27
Tim Nebraska Nebraska 10 31
Will Nebraska Nebraska 10 40
Bennett Minnesota Minnesota 28 13
Chris Minnesota Minnesota 28 10
Colin Minnesota Minnesota 30 6
Jared Minnesota Minnesota 28 7
Lando Minnesota Minnesota 27 14
Marty Minnesota Minnesota 30 7
Tim Minnesota Minnesota 31 10
Will Northwestern Minnesota 20 10
Bennett Iowa Penn State 😈 😈
Chris Iowa Penn State 😈 😈
Colin Penn State Penn State 😈 😈
Jared Penn State Penn State 😈 😈
Lando Penn State Penn State 😈 😈
Marty Iowa Penn State 😈 😈
Tim Penn State Penn State 😈 😈
Will Iowa Penn State 😈 😈
Bennett Wisconsin Wisconsin 31 23
Chris Purdue Wisconsin 31 27
Colin Wisconsin Wisconsin 31 20
Jared Wisconsin Wisconsin 30 23
Lando Wisconsin Wisconsin 28 21
Marty Wisconsin Wisconsin 27 17
Tim Wisconsin Wisconsin 38 24
Will Wisconsin Wisconsin 21 10
Bennett Notre Dame Notre Dame 35 38
Chris Notre Dame Notre Dame 32 35
Colin Notre Dame Notre Dame 20 27
Jared Notre Dame Notre Dame 27 28
Lando Ohio State Ohio State 38 28
Marty Notre Dame Ohio State 27 21
Tim Notre Dame Ohio State 31 30
Will Notre Dame Notre Dame 23 27
Black Shoe Degenerates Week 4