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Illinois Fighting Illini vs. Northwestern Wildcats Pick-Odds-Prediction 11/30/13

Northwestern Wildcats (4-7) at Illinois Fighting Illini (4-7)

College Football: Saturday, November 30, 2013 at 3:30 pm (Memorial Stadium)

The Line: Illinois Fighting Illini +3.5 See the Latest Odds


The Northwestern Wildcats head to Memorial Stadium on Saturday to face off against the Illinois Fighting Illini.

The Illinois Fighting Illini finally earned a win this past weekend, although it wasn’t pretty, as Illinois defeated the Purdue Boilermakers 20-16 in Purdue.  Illinois was typical Illinois this season, starting off the season promising, and then completely falling flat once conference play starts.  The Illini, heading into their meeting with Purdue last weekend had dropped six straight in conference play.  A huge reason for that is their horrible defensive play.  Illinois is currently ranked 107th in the nation in scoring defense, allowing more than 35 points per game on average.  I’ve said all year long that Scheelhaase is the real deal under center for the Illini, and the passing game has been effective for the Fighting Illini, ranking 28th in the nation with an average of 285.9 yards per game through the air, but still without a defense this team was going nowhere once again this year.

Illinois Fighting Illini vs. Northwestern Wildcats Pick-Odds-Prediction 11/30/13

David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

The Northwestern Wildcats are one of the more disappointing stories in all of college football this year.  Remember when the Wildcats were undefeated and they had the Buckeyes on the ropes at Ryan Field in primetime?  SO do I and that was a fun game to watch and the Wildcats looked like they were poised for something special this year.  After that loss, the wheels just completely fell off for this team as the Wildcats fell again this past weekend, making it seven straight losses for the ‘Cats.  This team was thinking Rose Bowl earlier in the year, now they will be at home watching all the bowl games in January.  To be fair, the Wildcats did suffer a ton of injuries at key positions, and Northwestern had one of the toughest schedules in the conference, but still, to drop seven straight is incredibly disappointing.  The Wildcats can hope to end their season on somewhat of a high note here as Northwestern finally gets a break, and gets to face the Illini. 

The Northwestern Wildcats are just 3-8 against the spread on the year, and when the Wildcats are the favorite, Northwestern is just 2-4 ATS. 

The Illinois Fighting Illini are 5-6 against the spread on the year, and when the Illini are an underdog, Illinois is 4-4 ATS this season.

I have to take Northwestern in this spot.  The Wildcats, believe it or not are better than their record shows, as the Wildcats have had two overtime losses in that seven game losing streak, one to the Huskers, and the other to the Hawkeyes.  The Wildcats had the Huskers beat, in Lincoln no less, but gave up a hair Mary costing them the game as time ran out.

Illinois is just a bad team, and we are getting some value here as I have this one at a round a touchdown advantage for the Wildcats.  I will be on Northwestern here on Saturday.

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