The Wisconsin Badgers will welcome the Minnesota Golden Gophers to Camp Randall Stadium for a rivalry matchup in Week 13 of the College Football Season. Does either team have a true edge? Let’s break down the NCAAF odds and find out!
Minnesota Golden Gophers vs. Wisconsin Badgers
Saturday, November 26, 2022 – 03:30 PM EST at Camp Randall Stadium
It’s probably unlikely that the Minnesota Golden Gophers or Wisconsin Badgers will win the Big Ten West. However, they’re both going to bowl games despite having up-and-down years.
On Saturday, we’ll get an exciting rivalry matchup between Minnesota and Wisconsin as both teams play for a better bowl game, more respect, and of course, bragging rights.
Minnesota won three of their last four games but just lost to Iowa, 13-10 last weekend. Meanwhile, Wisconsin also won three of their last four games but has a loss to Iowa, 24-10.
If it weren’t for Iowa, this game would probably have more to play for. But regardless, it’s going to be an exciting defensive matchup.
Here are our NCAAF picks and predictions for Saturday’s matchup between the Minnesota Golden Gophers vs. Wisconsin Badgers.
Can Minnesota Keep Up On The Road?
The Minnesota Golden Gophers have averaged 403.3 yards per game. The offense doesn’t always look like a powerhouse, but they always find a way to gain yards and win games.
They are led by Tanner Morgan, who has seven passing touchdowns and five interceptions. Morgan is good at limiting turnovers and is a system quarterback.
The Golden Gophers would much rather run the football with Mohamed Ibrahim, who has rushed for 1,524 yards on 277 attempts this season. He’s already scored 19 touchdowns on the season, averaging 5.5 yards per carry. Ibrahim doesn’t get the love that guys like Blake Corum get, but he’s been a stud in his final college football season this year.
He’s also been helped out by an excellent offensive line that understands its assignment. The run block for Minnesota is terrific, allowing Ibrahim to do his thing.
On defense, the Golden Gophers have allowed under 275 yards per game. They’ve given up 172.1 yards in the air and 102.5 yards on the ground. The coverage in the secondary is elite for Minnesota, and the run defense is just as good. Minnesota’s pass rush isn’t as effective as the rest of the defense, but it’s good enough with a terrific secondary playing behind them.
Wisconsin’s Offense Needs To Step Up
The defense for Wisconsin will be fine. They’ve allowed under 300 yards per game while giving up 103.7 yards per game on the ground. As long as the Badgers can shut down the Minnesota run game, they’ll be fine defensively.
Wisconsin’s secondary is just as good as Minnesota’s. These teams are very similar defensively, except Wisconsin has allowed about one more touchdown per game this season.
The Badgers are better as a pass-rush unit and are also dominant in the secondary. The run defense is nearly identical to Minnesota too. They have more missed tackles than Minnesota, which is something to think about, but overall, both defenses should end up shining.
The Wisconsin Badgers have relied on Graham Mertz at quarterback. He’s got 19 touchdowns but also nine interceptions. Like Minnesota, Wisconsin wants to run the football. Braelon Allen has rushed for ten touchdowns on 207 carries. He’s earned 1,121 yards and 5.4 yards per carry. But he’s got a right leg injury. It’s unclear if he’ll be able to perform on Saturday.
Prediction and Pick
The total for this game is sitting at 36. It makes sense, both teams are going to want to run the football.
Both teams will likely need help to gain big yardage plays down the field when they run the football. Neither defense has budged against the run, and we already know both secondaries are elite in the Big Ten.
Therefore, I’m backing the Under 36 in this game. Allen’s hurt and Mertz makes a ton of mistakes. But the defense should play lights out against Minnesota on their home field. Minnesota averages 229.5 yards per game, and Wisconsin has added 176 yards on the ground. It will be hard to score points when these two teams can’t get close to those averages offensively.
Plus, these defenses should be able to force third down and long. Neither quarterback will be good enough to convert at a high rate in those instances. Not against these two defenses.
Remember to take a look at the Minnesota betting sites if you're betting on this rivalry game from Minnesota.
*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.