A year or two ago, Indiana and Michigan State might have been viewed as viable opposition for Big Ten powerhouses Michigan and Ohio State. However, in 2022, they are both more than 20-point underdogs.
Indiana is coming off a loss to a struggling Nebraska team and that reward is a home game against undefeated Michigan. Ohio State will look to keep rolling against Michigan State, but the two most compelling games could be the showdowns between Purdue and Maryland as well as the Iowa-Illinois matchup.
Undefeated Penn State gets the week off after a tough matchup against Northwestern.
The college football betting lines have Ohio State (+225) third and Michigan (+2200) sixth in the odds to win the national title.
Ohio State (-250) remains the overwhelming favorite to win the Big Ten title according to the college football picks followed by defending champion Michigan (+475), Penn State (+1000) and Minnesota (+1400).
Game of the Week
Michigan Wolverines vs Indiana Hoosiers
- Date, time, TV: Saturday, Noon ET (FOX)
- Line: Michigan -22½
If Indiana struggled against Nebraska, what would things look like when Michigan comes to town?
Blake Corum only had one carry in last year’s win. Considering that he had 59 carries in the last two weeks, he should be much busier in this one.
The nation’s leading scorer (10 TD, 60 pts) 🔋 pic.twitter.com/ZKSH6Abzv5
— Michigan Football (@UMichFootball) October 5, 2022
Indiana is 12th out of 14 teams in the Big Ten with 142.6 rushing yards allowed per game. However, the 3.3 yards allowed per rushing allowed ranks eighth so perhaps they can slow down Corum and the Michigan running game.
Auburn transfer Shaun Shivers leads Indiana with 345 rushing yards.
Michigan is second in the conference with 15 sacks so protecting the quarterback will be crucial for the Hoosiers.
The Wolverines are 19-1 in the last 20 games against Indiana and will look to extend the domination on Saturday.
Other Games to Watch
Nebraska Cornhuskers vs Rutgers Scarlet Knights
- Date, Time (TV): Friday, 7 p.m. ET (FS1)
- Line: Nebraska -3
Nebraska is coming off its first conference win of the season. Can the Huskers do it again?
Rutgers (3-2) won its first three games, but it has been a different story since stepping into conference play as the Scarlet Knights have been outscored 76-20 in losses to Iowa and Ohio State.
Nebraska (2-3) is last in the Big Ten in total defense while Rutgers is second to last in total offense, so who wins that game within the game?
Rutgers is 1-4 against the spread in its last five games against teams from the Big Ten West while Nebraska has covered in just one of its last seven contests.
Purdue Boilermakers vs Maryland Terrapins
- Date, Time (TV): Saturday, Noon ET (BTN)
- Line: Maryland -3
This is not going to be a fun day for the defensive backs for both teams when 3-2 Purdue squares off with 4-1 Maryland in one of the more interesting games in Big Ten.
Purdue’s Aidan O’Connell leads the Big Ten with an average of 299.8 passing yards per game while Maryland’s Taulia Tagovailoa is the conference leader with a 75.5 completion percentage.
Purdue and Maryland are ninth and 10th in the conference in passing yards per game so this could be a pretty entertaining affair.
Wisconsin Badgers vs Northwestern Wildcats
- Date, Time (TV): Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ET (Big Ten Network)
- Line: Wisconsin -10
When it comes to job security, being blown out by a team coached by one of your predecessors is not the way to proceed.
After Bret Bielema’s Illinois’ team rolled to a 34-10 win just a week after Wisconsin suffered a humbling 31-point loss at Ohio State, the clock struck midnight on Paul Chryst’s time at Wisconsin.
Northwestern (1-4) has already upset Nebraska and covered as 25½-point underdogs and will look to hang around as a double-digit underdog in this one.
Only Nebraska allows more rushing yards per game than Northwestern, and that could be a problem with Braelon Allen, the fifth-leading rusher in the Big Ten, figuring to get the ball early and often.
Wisconsin (2-3) has covered against the college football predictions in just one of its last 10 games at Northwestern. When looking at the Big Ten West football standings, who would have had Wisconsin as the lone team in the division without a conference win?
Ohio State Buckeyes vs Michigan State Spartans
- Date, Time (TV): Saturday, 4 p.m. ET (ABC)
- Line: Ohio State -27
A year ago, this would have been one of the games of the season in the Big Ten. In 2022, the hope is that the game is still competitive heading into the second half. Ohio State is currently favored by 27 points against the 2-3 Spartans.
The presence of star running back Kenneth Walker helped overcome the defensive issues at Michigan State a season ago. Walker is now in the NFL and the offense isn’t able to fix all the issues.
Third-ranked Ohio State (5-0) is rolling through the schedule even with running back TreVeyon Henderson and receiver Jaxon Smith-Njigba missing time.
According to the college football odds, quarterback C.J. Stroud has even odds to win the Heisman Trophy.
Michigan State is allowing quarterbacks to complete 67% of its passes with eight touchdowns and no interceptions, so this could be a long day for the Spartans’ secondary.
The Buckeyes have covered in each of the last five matchups with Michigan State.
Iowa Hawkeyes vs Illinois Fighting Illini
- Date, Time (TV): Saturday, 7:30 p.m. ET (Big Ten Network)
- Line: Illinois -3½
Could the Big Ten be saving the best for last in Week 6?
Iowa’s offense is abysmal, but the defense leads the Big Ten, allowing just 3.7 yards per play in helping the Hawkeyes get off to a 3-2 start. Illinois (4-1) is second on that list at 3.8 yards a play so this game could be the most physical of the six Big Ten contests.
Keep an eye on defensive linemen Keith Randolph of Illinois and Lukas Van Ness of Iowa as they are among the conference leaders in tackles for loss.
The total has gone under in five of Iowa’s last six games and in 11 of the last 15 games for Illinois.