Northwestern +14.5 1st Half -115 3% play I see plenty of books right now with this 1st half line including mybookie
I like the first half as a play in this game much more. Northwestern over the last 5 meetings have dominated this game in the first half outscoring Wisconsin 54-24. We are getting a huge number here, and we have seen inflated 1st halfs for favorites the last year and a half. Wisconsin is the #1 defense in the nation, but the average offenses they have faced rank 110th in YPP on average. Northwestern is 116th, but their defense is the reason I’m going to back them in the first half. They have held Wisconsin to 10, 7, 7, 0, and 0 points in the first half the last 5 seasons. I just think Pat Fitzgerald is a better coach, and I think this is a buy low sell high situation. This is the role Northwestern loves to be in.
Wisconsin is also really banged up especially on the defensive side of the ball, and they will be without their two starting safeties in the first half who were ejected for targeting. I can see Northwestern getting some points in the first half, and getting shut out in the second half. Northwestern’s defense is still very solid ranking 38th in YPP allowed, and they are top 20 in explosive plays allowed. They are fundamentally sound and I don’t think Jonathan Taylor will break any long TD’s here. NW held Wisconsin to 165 yards in last year’s 31-17 victory. I think Northwestern will be able to run the ball here a bit. Wisconsin does rank #1 in in rushing defense, but they haven’t [layed anyone with an average opponent rushing offense ranking 108th. Northwestern has had success against Wisconsin, and I think the safeties missing from Wisconsin will hurt them in the run game as well.
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