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Iowa Hawkeyes vs. Northwestern Wildcats Pick-Odds-Prediction 10/26/13

Northwestern Wildcats (4-3) at Iowa Hawkeyes (4-3)

College Football: Saturday, October 26, 2013 at 12:00 pm (Kinnick Stadium)

The Line: Iowa Hawkeyes -4 See the Latest Odds

TV: BTN HD

The Northwestern Wildcats head to Iowa City on Saturday to face off against the Iowa Hawkeyes.

The Iowa Hawkeyes are only 4-3 on the season, and while I don’t believe in moral victories, Iowa did have a nice showing against the Buckeyes last weekend.  Iowa is an old school team, but slowly you are starting to see this team transform into a more modern offense with some no-huddle and more spread looks.  Don’t be fooled though, Iowa still wants to grind it out on the ground, and the Hawks are having some success at that this season, averaging 4.3 yards per carry.  Iowa has opened up the play calling however with sophomore signal caller Rudock taking the reins.  Rudock is putting up solid numbers this season, completing nearly 60 percent of his passes for 1447 yards and a TD/INT ratio of 11/7.  Rudock is also effective on the ground, as the Iowa signal caller has rushed for 147 yards this season on 34 attempts, making him the third leading rusher on the Hawkeyes.  Defensively Iowa is stout, allowing just 20.2 points per game on average, and that is against a decent schedule that includes the Spartans, the Huskies and of course the Buckeyes. 

Iowa Hawkeyes vs. Northwestern Wildcats Pick-Odds-Prediction 10/26/13

Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

The Northwestern Wildcats have been in a free fall ever since their heartbreaking loss to the Buckeyes three weeks ago.  Since that loss, Northwestern has fallen to the Badgers (no shame there), and last week to the Golden Gophers.  The Wildcats are incredibly beat up at key positions.  McEvilly on the defensive line is currently listed as questionable against Iowa, as well as their shifty running back Venric Mark and of course one of their two quarterbacks, Kain Colter.  The Wildcats with Colter and Mark in the backfield have a very dynamic and dangerous ground attack that in the past has given Iowa some trouble.  Defensively the Wildcats have struggled this season, with their ability to create turnovers the one saving grace for this unit.  Northwestern is giving up 4.4 yards per carry on average this season, and if their defensive front isn’t complete on Saturday against Iowa, that number could climb as the Hawkeyes are sure to try and take advantage of any holes up front.

The Northwestern Wildcats are 0-5 against the spread in their last five games, and the total has gone under in four of the last five for Northwestern.  The Hawkeyes are 3-8-1 ATS in their last 12 home games and the total has gone over in five of their last seven home games.

I like the Hawkeyes in this spot.  On a neutral field, and if everyone was healthy, I’d take the Wildcats, but Iowa City can be tough and the Wildcats are bruised and battered right now.  The Minnesota Golden Gophers were able to move the ball on Northwestern last weekend, and if they can, the Hawks can.  Northwestern will make some plays and keep it close, but in the end I like Iowa by around a touchdown here on Saturday. 

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Iowa -4

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