Iowa Hawkeyes at Minnesota Golden Gophers - 10/8/16 College Football Pick, Odds, and Prediction
Iowa Hawkeyes (3-2) at Minnesota Golden Gophers (3-1)
College Football: Saturday, October 8, 2016 at 12:00 pm (TCF Bank Stadium)
The Line: Minnesota Golden Gophers +1.5 -- Over/Under: 51 See the Latest Odds
We’ve got a great college football matchup coming on Saturday, October 8 from TCF Bank Stadium as the Iowa Hawkeyes travel to meet the Minnesota Golden Gophers.
Iowa enters this game at 3-2 on the season and is coming off a 38-31 loss to Northwestern in their most recent outing. In that game, the Hawkeyes allowed Justin Jackson to run for 171 yards and Austin Carr to catch three touchdown passes. The Iowa offense couldn’t keep up (and also gave up an interception on the final drive), and QB C.J. Beathard finished 19-of-27 for 204 yards and a TD. On the ground, LeShun Daniels Jr. led the Hawkeyes with 17 carries for 72 yards and a TD, while Riley McCarron came up with eight grabs for 78 yards and a score.
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So far this year for Iowa, Beathard is 74-of-120 for 945 yards and nine touchdowns, while Daniels leads the way on the ground with 69 carries for 373 yards and four scores. The top Hawkeyes receiver is Matt VandeBerg with 19 grabs for 284 yards and three TDs.
Over on the Minnesota side, they’re coming in at 3-1 on the season. The Golden Gophers suffered their first loss of the year with a 29-26 OT heartbreaker at Penn State this past weekend. Minnesota had an early 13-3 lead in that one, but gave up 17 unanswered points in the third quarter. QB Mitch Leidner went 24-of-40 with 241 yards, one TD and one pick for the Gophers, while RB Rodney Smith handled the rushing duties (23 carries; 104 yards) along with Shannon Brooks (14 carries; 100 yards; TD). Brian Smith would finish with 101 yards on seven receptions, but couldn’t help Minnesota late.
On the season for the Golden Gophers, Leidner has a 73-of-116 line for 840 yards and a 5:2 TD:INT ratio. Smith leads the team in rushing with 82 carries for 402 yards and five touchdowns, while Drew Wolitarsky still has the lead among Minnesota receivers with 24 receptions for 321 yards and three scores.
Iowa is 5-1 ATS in their last six road games, and 1-4-1 ATS in their last six conference games. Iowa is also 1-5-1 ATS in their last seven games overall, and 0-3-1 ATS versus a team with a winning record.
Meanwhile, Minnesota is 6-0 ATS in their last six games following a straight-up loss, and 17-5-1 ATS in their last 23 conference games. Minnesota is also 5-2 ATS versus a team with a winning record, and 5-2-1 ATS in their last eight games after posting over 450 total yards in their previous game.
Iowa started the year with two solid victories, winning handily against under-matched competition. The wheels seem to have fallen off for the Hawkeyes in the three weeks since, however, as they’re 1-2 in that span and could easily have lost to Rutgers (a 14-7 affair), going 0-3. Those were all games the Hawkeyes probably should have won, and here they are in a coin-flip situation against Minnesota. My main concern with the Gophers is that they allow a lot of points (at least 23 in every game this year), but the offense usually answers the call to respond. I’m going with Minnesota here, but I’m not terribly happy about it. I’m anticipating a close game as well.