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Northwestern Wildcats vs. Michigan Wolverines Pick-Odds-Prediction 11/16/13

Michigan Wolverines (6-3) at Northwestern Wildcats (4-5)

NCAAF Football: Saturday, November 16, 2013 at 3:30 pm (Ryan Field)

The Line: Northwestern Wildcats -2.5 See the Latest Odds

TV: BTN HD

The Michigan Wolverines will try and rebound after back to back losses this weekend, when the Wolverines face the Wildcats at Ryan Field.

The Northwestern Wildcats have had a season for the books.  The Wildcats were at one time flirting with a top 15 ranking, and had the Ohio State Buckeyes on the ropes in primetime.  Since then, everything has fallen apart for the Wildcats.  Counting that loss to the Buckeyes, the Wildcats have dropped five straight, including a loss in their last game, to the Nebraska Cornhuskers on a 50+ yard hail mary as time expired for the huskers.  Northwestern has been banged up this season at key positions, which has definitely hurt, but you can see this team almost believes they are going to lose when you watch them play.  I still think Fitz is one of the best coaches in the Big Ten, but he has yet to be able to turn this season around for NU. 

Northwestern Wildcats vs. Michigan Wolverines Pick-Odds-Prediction 11/16/13

Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

The Michigan Wolverines, like the Wildcats are reeling right now.  The Wolverines were playing excellent ball earlier in the season, but now the Wolverines have dropped two in a row, one to their rival the Michigan State Spartans, and then this past week to the Nebraska Cornhuskers…in Ann Arbor no less.  The Wolverines offense has been horrible the past two games, and against the Huskers, MU looked clueless.  Devin Gardner had happy feet all day long as the Huskers were blitzing on nearly every play, and the Wolverines did nothing to try and adjust.  In fact, on first down the Wolverines routinely went under center and ran right into the teeth of the Huskers blitz.  The play on the field was terrible for this offense, but this loss I hang more on Hoke and company as the coaching was horrendous for the Wolverines offensively.  The defense for Michigan was solid, holding the Huskers to under 300 yards of total offense isn’t easy, but unless the Wolverines get this offense figured out soon, it will be a long road to January.

The Michigan Wolverines are 4-5 against the spread this season, and as an underdog, the Wolverines are 0-1 against the number.  On the road this season, the Wolverines are 0-3 ATS, and when playing inside the Big Ten, Michigan is 2-3 against the spread on the year.

The Wildcats are just 3-6 against the spread this season, and at home, the Wildcats are just 1-4 ATS.  When playing inside the Big Ten, Northwestern is also just 1-4 against the spread this season.

It seems the odds makers are begging us to take Northwestern at the current number, but I’m going to bite anyway.  The Wildcats are better than they have played as of late, and what better way for them to turn their season around somewhat, than by beating the Wolverines at Ryan Field.  Venric Mark is still listed as questionable, which is why I believe this number is under three. 

The Wildcats defense is far from dominant, but Northwestern is great at forcing turnovers, and then turning those turnovers into points.  The Wolverines have been far from efficient the past few weeks, and I look for the Wildcats to take advantage of that on Saturday, getting some free possessions from Gardner and company.

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Northwestern -2.5

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