Wisconsin Badgers at Iowa Hawkeyes
NCAAF: Saturday, September 22, 2018, Kinnick Stadium, Iowa City, Iowa, 8:30 PM ET
The Wisconsin Badgers opened the new season with a couple of big wins over Western Kentucky and New Mexico but they were upset at home by the BYU Cougars in the first non-conference home defeat since 2003. On the other hand, the Iowa Hawkeyes maintained the perfect start of the season with the third straight victory as they once again displayed an excellent defensive performance to remain the only unbeaten team in the Big Ten West alongside Minnesota.
The Badgers’ late field goal miss cost them a win over the Cougars
Wisconsin was a massive favorite to beat the Brigham Young Cougars in front of their own fans but the visitors shocked them with a 24-21 win thanks to Rafael Gaglianone’ missed field goal kick late in the tilt. The Badgers were excellent on the ground as they collected 204 rushing yards and three touchdowns and they are among the top ten teams when it comes to rushing yards on average (285.0). However, the Hawkeyes are the third-best team in the entire country when it comes to defending the ground as they are allowing only 42.0 rushing yards per contest, so the visitors will have to find a way to hurt them through the air instead.
Alex Hornibrook is listed as the starting quarterback and the junior has 43 completions on 68 attempts for 595 yards, three touchdowns, and two interceptions for the rating of 145.4. Hornibrook didn’t have the best of displays in a loss to the Cougars as he recorded 18 passes on 28 attempts for 190 yards and an interception, while his passer rating was just 47.6. He is expected to be better on this one, especially if the Hawkeyes stop the Badgers’ rushing game.
The Hawkeyes recorded the third consecutive victory with a win over the Panthers
Iowa kept the Northern Iowa Panthers off the scoreboard in the opening three quarters while they scored 38 points in that span, and even though the visitors responded with 14 in the final quarter, it wasn’t enough to avoid a 38-14 defeat. The Hawkeyes recorded 545 total yards in opposite to the Panthers’ 228, while they won 13 first downs more than the visitors (27-14). Iowa is averaging 28.0 points per contest, but their defense is outstanding this year as they are allowing just 8.0 points per game, which is good enough for the second-best defense in the college football.
Nate Stanley is the clear No. 1 option at the quarterback position and the junior has 50 completions on 79 attempts for 583 yards, three touchdowns, and two interceptions for the rating of 132.8. Stanley impressed in a win over Northern Iowa as he recorded 23 passes on 28 attempts for 309 yards, two touchdowns, and an interception, while he had a passer rating of 94.5.
- 4-1 ATS in their last five games played in September
- 7-2 ATS in their last nine games after allowing less than 275 total yards in their previous game
- 6-1-1 ATS in their last eight games played at home
- 1-4 ATS in their last five games played in September
- 0-4 ATS in their last four games played on field turf
- 1-4 ATS in their last five games in total
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
Wisconsin won five out of the previous eight H2H encounters including the last two, while the Badgers were victorious in four out of the past five meetings at the Kinnick Stadium. Although the Badgers are slight favorites on this one and road team is 8-3 ATS in their last 11 meetings, I am backing one of the best defenses in the country to control the visitors. Iowa is averaging nearly 390 yards per contest, while their defense has been rock solid against the running and I am not convinced with Alex Hornibrook passing skills, so it’s going to be difficult for the visitors to make damage.
Prediction: Iowa Hawkeyes +3 (-110)
Full-Game Total Pick
For those who prefer playing on the points, under is 3-1-1 in the last five meetings; under is 8-3 in Hawkeyes previous 11 home games, under is 35-17-2 in Hawkeyes last 54 games in September, while under is 5-2 in Badgers previous seven games in total.
Prediction: Under 42.5 (110)
Full-Game Prop Bet
Wisconsin scored more than 21 points in the first two games of the season but they scored exactly 21 in the most recent tilt. The Badgers did score over 21.5 in three out of the last four visits to Iowa, and although the Hawkeyes’ defense didn’t allow more than 14 points so far in the campaign, I believe the visitors will score at least 22.
Prediction: Team Totals: Wisconsin Badgers Over 21.5 (-120)
Half-Time Side Pick
Both Iowa and Wisconsin were up at halftime in two out of three games so far in the campaign, and this will likely be a close encounter, so it could go either way. However, I am giving a slight advantage to the hosts and you can back them at +120 or you can go with the +1.5 spread at -110.
Prediction: Iowa Hawkeyes (+120)
Half-Time Total Bet
None of Iowa’s first three game of the season produced more than 21 points at halftime, while that is the case in one of Wisconsin’s three, and considering that the Hawkeyes are rock solid at home, I don’t think the rivals will combine for more than 21 on this one.
Prediction: Under 21.5 (-115)
Half-Time Prop Prediction
It’s going to be a close one but I believe the hosts have the ability to edge the slightly favored visitors and beat them in both halves. Backing Iowa on double result would bring you +250 profit, but you can also try with an unorthodox Tie – Iowa pick at +1400.
Prediction: Double Result: Iowa – Iowa (+250)