Michigan vs. Rutgers NCAAF Week 10 Betting Preview: Scarlet Knights Need to Limit Turnovers

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Blake Corum #2 of the Michigan Wolverines runs up the field in the first half of a game against the Penn State Nittany Lions. Mike Mulholland/Getty Images/AFP.

The Rutgers Scarlet Knights will welcome the Michigan Wolverines to SHI Stadium for an exciting Big Ten matchup. With the spread sitting at -26, does Rutgers have a chance to cover at home?

Let’s see what the NCAAF odds tell us at the top-rated sportsbooks!

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Michigan Wolverines vs. Rutgers Scarlet Knights

Saturday, November 5, 2022 – 07:30 PM EDT at SHI Stadium

The Michigan Wolverines are ranked 5th after the first College Football Playoff rankings were released. The committee believes that Clemson is a better team than Michigan. I disagree.

Michigan is 8-0 on the season with some large Big Ten wins by huge margins. They’ll seek more respect against the Rutgers Scarlet Knights on the road.

Rutgers has just one conference win on the season, while Michigan has five. The Wolverines are better analytically than they were last year. Last year’s team made the College Football Playoff. However, Rutgers has given Michigan a battle over the last two seasons.

Can Rutgers battle Michigan for a third straight game and keep it close? Here are our NCAAF picks and predictions for Saturday’s matchup between the Michigan Wolverines vs. Rutgers Scarlet Knights.

When Rutgers Has the Ball

The Rutgers Scarlet Knights haven’t been healthy at quarterback all season long. But they’re looking to develop Gavin Wimsatt to finish the year. Wimsatt has a QBR of 24.5 with three interceptions to just one touchdown.

He’s better in the read-option on offense, but when he tried to run for the first time against Minnesota last week, he was helped off the field after his head hit the ground. He’ll be fine and he’s expected to play on Saturday against Michigan.

The offense scored no points against Minnesota’s defense with Wimsatt under center. He made some errors with two turnovers and missed a bunch of throws that were too high for receivers to grab. There were also some drops mixed in. Against Michigan, Rutgers will need to be perfect offensively.

The Wolverines have allowed just 250.3 yards per game on defense, with under 80 yards on the ground. Rutgers won’t be able to succeed in the air, and with Michigan’s run defense so dominant, they’ll likely fail to find success on the ground as well.

When Michigan Has the Ball

The Wolverines have scored 41 points per game this season. They’re led by Blake Corum, who has rushed for 1078 yards and 14 touchdowns for Michigan this season. J.J. McCarthy has also done well at quarterback, with ten touchdowns and just two interceptions. McCarthy has been really good at limiting turnovers, allowing Michigan to earn plenty of stops defensively.

The offense has been outstanding, but will have a challenge against Rutgers’ defense. The Scarlet Knights have allowed 22.5 points per game but under 300 yards total per game. The secondary is elite for Rutgers, and the pass rush has also been terrific.

They’ve also stayed disciplined in tackling and continue to stop the run successfully. The Scarlet Knights didn’t allow any big plays down the field against Minnesota last week in a 31-0 loss. They kept Minnesota in front but just couldn’t get off on third downs.

Rutgers will need to stop Michigan on third down in this game. With how strong Michigan is up front and how great Corum is as a runner, it’s unlikely that Rutgers will be able to earn enough stops to keep themselves in the game.

Michigan vs. Rutgers: Pick and Prediction

But with all of that said, the spread is at -26 for Michigan. Last year, Rutgers had the ball in a one-possession game in the two-minute drill. Rutgers didn’t get the job done but kept the game within one score. In the game before that, Rutgers played Michigan into overtime. Rutgers had their chances but ended up losing.

Again, Rutgers kept things close. If the Scarlet Knights can limit turnovers, Rutgers should be able to cover the spread at home. Michigan will wear Rutgers down. But the defense has held up well this season. And if Rutgers can earn just a couple of third-down stops, they’ll put themselves in a perfect spot to at least cover in this game.

Of course, Michigan is looking to prove to the College Football Committee that they deserve a top-four spot in the rankings, but there’s so much football to be played. It’ll all play itself out. Michigan needs to worry about winning.

Rutgers needs to worry about limiting turnovers. The Knights are just two wins away from a legitimate bowl appearance. They’ve got a couple of teams they can beat coming up after Michigan. But for now, I will stick with the narrative that Rutgers can cover.

NCAAF Pick: Rutgers +26 (-110) at BetOnline (visit our BetOnline Review)

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Rutgers +26 (-110)
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*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.