Big Ten Title Game Bet: Northwestern vs Ohio State Odds and Prediction

by Rick Rockwell
on November 28, 2018
3

Minute Read

On Saturday, the Northwestern Wildcats and the Ohio State Buckeyes will play for the Big Ten Championship. With a win, the Wildcats could end up in a major bowl game like the Rose Bowl.

If the Buckeyes win, it could improve their chances of making it into the College Football Playoffs. Kickoff inside Lucas Oil Stadium is at 8 PM ET.

For those looking to jump straight into the betting action, here are the top sites we recommend:

Northwestern vs Ohio State Live Odds and Betting History

The following odds are courtesy of Live Odds feed:

Betting Data Northwestern Wildcats Ohio State Buckeyes
Current S/U record 8-4 11-1
2018 Home 3-4 7-0
2018 Away 5-0 4-1
2018 ATS 6-5-1 5-7
2018 ATS Home 2-4-1 4-3
2018 ATS Away 4-1 1-4
2018 O/U 5-7 6-6
2018 O/U Home 3-4 3-4
2018 O/U Away 2-3 3-2

Big Ten Championship Preview: Wildcats vs Buckeyes

Saturday’s Big Ten title game marks the 77th time these two schools have played against each other. The Ohio State Buckeyes have dominated this head-to-head series with a record of 61-14-1. They’ve gone 30-1 against Northwestern since 1972 and have won the last 6 meetings.

Northwestern (8-4, 8-1 Big Ten) has won 3 straight games and 7 of their last 8 games. The only loss in the last two months came against Notre Dame by the score of 31-21. Over that span, the Wildcats defeated three Top 25 teams: Michigan State, Wisconsin and Iowa. Knowing that they had already wrapped up the Big Ten East Division a few weeks ago, NW cruised in their game against Illinois last weekend.

Ohio State (11-1, 8-1 Big Ten) pulled off one of the most impressive performances I’ve seen out of any FBS team this year. After playing a few months of lackluster football, the Buckeyes came out on Saturday and flat out destroyed the #4 ranked Michigan Wolverines in “The Game.” It was a surprising performance as they put up 62 points against the nation’s top defense. Now, we need to see if Ohio State can keep that momentum going this weekend against Northwestern.

Ohio State opened as a double digit spread with the majority of online sportsbooks. Depending on which online football betting site you looked at, the Buckeyes were favored by 12 to 14 points. Currently, most sites have the Buckeyes listed as a 14 point favorite. The Over/Under opened at a range of 57 to 60 points depending on the sportsbook you bet on football at. Currently, BetOnline has the O/U at 60.5 total points.

Free Big Ten Bet and Game Prediction: Northwestern +14

After what we witnessed between Michigan and Ohio State last weekend, it’s hard for some to imagine Northwestern having any chance at beating the Buckeyes on Saturday. With that said, I would caution Buckeyes fans and bettors to take a deep breath before rushing to lay money on Ohio State covering the spread.

Northwestern finished with the same 8-1 record in Big Ten play as the Buckeyes did. Additionally, the Wildcats beat almost as many ranked teams as Ohio State has (3 to 4). On the year, Northwestern has gotten better each week and has shown a toughness that Ohio State might not be fully prepared for.

For example, over their last 5 games, OSU lost to Purdue, only beat Nebraska by 5, and defeated Maryland by 1 point in OT. Other than Michigan, the Buckeyes played down to the level of their opponents. With that in mind, Northwestern has beaten other teams who didn’t take them seriously and I can see Ohio State playing lackadaisical again.

Ohio State has one of the best offenses in all off college football, which we saw on display against Michigan. OSU quarterback Haskins is one of the most prolific passers in FBS and he will light up a scoreboard all by himself. Northwestern has a solid pass defense that only allows 238 ypg. They also only give up 21.7 ppg. NW also has an experienced QB in Thorson, who will keep his poise and continue to lead this offense even if they get behind early.

The Wildcats defense make opposing offenses earn every point and yard. Just ask Notre Dame who had to fight for their win. Ask Michigan who only scored 20 points against this defense. And ask Iowa, who only scored 10 against NW.

Northwestern has been great against the spread and it only gives me more confidence in taking them at the 14 points.

NW has gone 5-1 ATS when an underdog of 10.5 to 21 points, 12-3 ATS in their last 15 games as an underdog, 6-0 ATS this year as an underdog, 20-7 ATS versus the Big Ten, 11-5 ATS when playing teams with winning records, 15-4 SU in games following a SU Big Ten win, 8-2 ATS in their last 10 games played on field turf, and 8-3 ATS after winning 2 or more straight games.

Ohio State is 3-7 ATS when a favorite of 10.5 to 21 points, 9-17 ATS after playing a Big Ten game, 3-6 ATS this year against the Big Ten, 2-5 ATS after winning two or more straight games, 8-15 ATS following a win over a Big Ten rival, and 2-6 ATS in their last 8 overall games.

I believe the Buckeyes will win this game, but I do feel that Northwestern will show up and keep it within two touchdowns. Avoid the moneylines for this title game because Ohio State at -700 has no value and Northwestern’s moneyline of +535 is too risky despite the high odds.

Also, this game could easily turn into a defensive battle which works for the Under or Ohio State could duplicate their success from last weekend against Michigan and hits the Over by themselves. Bottom line, avoid the Total as there’s too much uncertainty.

The smart play is taking Northwestern and the 14 points.

Northwestern vs Ohio State Betting Recap:

  • Oddsmaker: BetOnline
  • Moneylines: Northwestern (+535) and Ohio State (-700)
  • Spread: Ohio State -14 (-109)
  • Over/Under: Over 60.5 total points (-115)
  • Prediction: Ohio State 30 – Northwestern 21
Pick: Northwestern Wildcats +14
-111

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