Northwestern Wildcats (6-4) at Minnesota Golden Gophers (5-5)
|Date & Time||Saturday November 17, 2018, 12:00 PM (EST)|
The Line: Minnesota Golden Gophers +3 -- Over/Under:
The Northwestern Wildcats and Minnesota Golden Gophers meet Saturday in college football action at TCF Bank Stadium.
The Northwestern Wildcats look to stay hot after winning five of their last six games. The Northwestern Wildcats have won all four road games this season. Clayton Thorson is completing 59.4 percent of his passes for 2,335 yards, 12 touchdowns and 12 interceptions. Thorson has one or less touchdown passes in nine of his last 12 games. Flynn Nagel and Bennett Skowronek have combined for 1,206 receiving yards and four touchdowns while Cameron Green has 44 receptions. The Northwestern Wildcats ground game is averaging 102.1 yards per contest, and Isaiah Bowser leads the way with 485 yards and four touchdowns. Defensively, Northwestern is allowing 23 points and 373.1 yards per game. Blake Gallagher leads the Northwestern Wildcats with 93 tackles, Joe Gaziano has five sacks and JR Pace has three interceptions.
The Minnesota Golden Gophers can become bowl eligible for the sixth time in the last seven years with a victory here. The Minnesota Golden Gophers have won five of their last six home games. Zack Annexstad is completing 52.2 percent of his passes for 1,277 yards, nine touchdowns and seven interceptions. Annexstad and Tanner Morgan have combined for 15 touchdown passes and 11 interceptions this season. Tyler Johnson and Rashod Bateman have combined for 1,542 receiving yards and 15 touchdowns while Chris Autman-Bell has 23 receptions. The Minnesota Golden Gophers ground game is averaging 165.1 yards per contest, and Mohamed Ibrahim leads the way with 717 yards and five touchdowns. Defensively, Minnesota is allowing 29.6 points and 404.8 yards per game. Blake Cashman leads the Minnesota Golden Gophers with 81 tackles, Carter Coughlin has nine sacks and Jacob Huff has two interceptions.
The Wildcats are 6-0-1 ATS in their last 7 games in November, 21-5-1 ATS in their last 27 conference games and 4-1-2 ATS in their last 7 games overall. The Golden Gophers are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 home games and 24-9-2 ATS in their last 35 games in November. The Wildcats are 4-9 ATS in their last 13 meetings, the home team is 4-0 ATS in their last 4 meetings and the favorite is 4-1 ATS in their last 5 meetings.
The Northwestern Wildcats have quietly been one of the hotter teams in the country and have oddly played their best football this season on the road. The Minnesota Golden Gophers haven't won back-to-back games since early September, but this is their best chance to clinch a bowl bid, as they play next week on the road against Wisconsin. The Northwestern Wildcats have failed to cover their last four games when favored by at least three points. The Minnesota Golden Gophers have failed to cover seven of their last 10 games when an underdog of at least three points. We back the Northwestern Wildcats often, and I said before the season that they were a Big Ten dark horse contender, and they've already locked up a spot in the title game. However, I like backing home teams this time of year that still have something to play for and senior day is big as well. Minnesota needs this game to go bowling and there's 13 seniors on this roster. Give me my free field goal.