Last Updated Sep 29, 2021, 8:00 PM
Michigan Wolverines vs. Wisconsin Badgers Predictions, Odds, Picks
VI Football Betting Expert
A Big 10 battle is set for Saturday afternoon as the Michigan Wolverines head to Madison, Wisconsin to take on the Wisconsin Badgers. Kick off for this conference bout is scheduled for 12:00 p.m. ET and will air on FOX from Camp Randall Stadium.
Score Prediction: Michigan 23, Wisconsin 20
Best Bet: Michigan +2.5
Best Bet: Under 43.5
Michigan Wolverines vs. Wisconsin Badgers Predictions
The biggest trend that stands out in this meeting is the point total (O/U). Michigan has gone UNDER in three of four games this season, while Wisconsin has gone UNDER in two of its three games. The combined 2-5 O/U run for these schools makes the smart play the UNDER. Wisconsin has gone UNDER in four straight games when playing inside Camp Randall Stadium as well.
The Michigan defense is no joke, ranked fourth nationally in points allowed per game. Add that with Wisconsin averaging 19 points per game, which ranks a woeful 113th nationally, it seems there is a numerical recipe for the UNDER hitting. The only concern there is that the point total has gone OVER in three straight meetings between both schools.
It's clear Michigan is the better team, as the Badgers have struggled noticeably on offense behind the arm of quarterback Graham Mertz. Much like the Wisconsin basketball team this past season, the leaders of this offense need to step up - plain and simple. Easier said than done though, especially against this Michigan defense.
Take advantage of the books, once again, giving Wisconsin favored odds when their opponent is clearly the better team on paper. Yes, Notre Dame was a neutral site, but Michigan seems to be the likely winner outright so taking any points regardless of the venue is the smart odds play. Wisconsin has covered four of its last five games against Michigan, but has also failed to cover six straight against an AP-ranked school.
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Michigan Wolverines vs. Wisconsin Badgers Betting Odds
Michigan Wolverines vs. Wisconsin Badgers Betting Resources
- Matchup: Big 10
- Date: Saturday, October 2, 2021
- Venue: Camp Randall Stadium
- Location: Madison, Wisconsin
- TV-Time: FOX - 12:00 p.m. ET
Michigan Wolverines Betting Analysis
Straight Up - SU, Against the Spread - ATS, Over-Under (O/U)
- SU: 4-0
- ATS: 3-1
- O/U: 1-3
- ATS - Home: 3-1
- ATS - Away: 0-0
Michigan's offense is just as good as its defense, statistically speaking. The Wolverines have the fourth-best defense nationally, but they also own the nation's 17th-highest point total average per game (40). They're outscoring opponents 161 to 47 this season, as Michigan has the nation's best (out of 130 schools) SRS ranking - which accounts the point difference in wins with the strength of schedule.
Blake Corum is running roughshod with 6.9 yards per carry and seven rushing TDs to go along with 475 yards. He is complimented with Hassan Haskins who has six TDs and 322 yards this year. The difference between these two backs is that Corum is also a threat in the receiving game.
Donovan Edwards also produces out of the back field, so the Michigan running attack will be crucial against Wisconsin's front seven - which is tough to crack in Madison. Cade McNamara is vastly more important to Michigan's offensive success in this game - and has yet to throw an interception this season.
Field possession will be key in this one, so the fact that Michigan has yet to throw an interception this season bodes well for Wolverines bettors. Although 16 of the Wolverines TDs have come from three players, all running backs, expect Wisconsin to focus on the run which will mean the passing attack of Michigan might have to take control of this game.
Cornelius Johnson is the main target for Michigan in the aerial attack, but only has eight catches for 198 yards and a TD. It's easy to think Michigan's running game will keep this game close, which it might, but the Wolverines passing attack will need to be ready in case this dangerous Badger defense limits Corum and co.
Wisconsin Badgers Betting Analysis
Straight Up - SU, Against the Spread - ATS, Over-Under (O/U)
- SU: 1-2
- ATS: 1-2
- O/U: 1-2
- ATS - Home: 1-2
- ATS - Away: 0-0
Wisconsin's defense might not be as good as we think, however. In the blink of an eye, Notre Dame put up over 40 points on the Badgers who might also have the worst offense to play from behind with. The only notion that Wisconsin's defense shows up on Saturday is that it's in Madison. The environment can only work in the Badgers' favor, but Michigan is too good of a team to let a venue defeat them - but it might. That's not a smart way to bet however, although the UNDER has hit in four straight home games for Wisconsin - typically meaning opponents struggle to score there.
The issue for Wisconsin's defense might actually be the offense, as Mertz continues to struggle which puts the defense on the field a lot. Mertz is completing 56.8% of his passes, which isn't terrible but it isn't good either. Anything over 50% is manageable, but not when your touchdown-to-interception ratio is 1:6. That would be enough to bench any quarterback four games into a season, but he is the best option for Wisconsin. There is no secret sauce, Mertz has to step up its as simple as that.
Chez Mellusi is the best option for Wisconsin's offense to produce numbers, a consistent 4.6 yards per carry with two TDs which is also (sadly) the most amount of TDs scored by any player on this offense - including the quarterbacks. Kendric Pryor and Danny Davis are the main targets in the passing game, but there's not much of one currently.
Inside the Stats - Michigan Wolverines
- Record: 4-0
- VI Ranking: 13
- Points Scored: 161
- Points Allowed: 47
- PS/G: 40.2 (17th)
- PA/G: 11.8 (4th)
Inside the Stats - Wisconsin Badgers
- Record: 1-2
- VI Ranking: 49
- Points Scored: 57
- Points Allowed: 64
- PS/G: 19 (113th)
- PA/G: 21.3 (56th)
Key Players to Watch
- MICH: Bake Corum - RB (69 carries, 475 yards, 7 TD)
- MICH: Cade McNamara - QB (33/53, 534 yards, 3 TD)
- WIS: Graham Mertz - QB (54/95, 566 yards, TD, 6 INT)
- WIS: Chez Mellusi - RB (69 carries, 319 yards, 2 TD)
- MICH: Ronnie Bell - WR (Knee-Out)
- WIS: Mike Maskalunas - LB (Undisclosed-Questionable)
- WIS: Darion Harrell - CB (Leg-Questionable)
- WIS: Faion Hicks - CB (Undisclosed-Questionable)
- WIS: Antwan Roberts - RB (Suspension-Out)
- WIS: Jack Nelson - OL (Arm-Questionable)
- WIS: Al Ashford - CB (Arm-Out)
- WIS: Tyler Mais - S ((Undisclosed-Questionable)
- WIS: Jack Eschenbach - TE (Arm-Questionable)
- WIS: Logan Brown - OL (Arm-Questionable)
- WIS: Aaron Witt - LB (Leg-Questionable)
- WIS: Cole Dakovich - TE (Leg-Out)
- WIS: Jordan Turner - LB (Undisclosed-Out)
- WIS: Quan Easterling - FB (Undisclosed-Questionable)
Michigan Wolverines vs. Wisconsin Badgers Betting Conclusion
Wisconsin's offense will only go as far as Mertz will take them, unless the defense plays out of its mind. The Badgers defense is capable of such a performance, especially at home as the 21.3 points allowed per game indicate. Also keep in mind that the point total went up following a 41 point allowance against Notre Dame. It's unlikely they give up anything over 35 at home.
Michigan's offense is very good however, despite being run heavy. The running philosophy of these teams should lean on the UNDER along with the O/U record of these teams 2-5 this season. Also, Michigan only allows 11.8 points per game while Wisconsin only scores 19. The UNDER and Michigan to cover (maybe even win) seems to be the smart play in this Big 10 battle.
Michigan Wolverines vs. Wisconsin Badgers Betting Trends
- Wisconsin has failed to cover the spread in six straight games when facing an AP-ranked school.
- The point total has gone OVER in three straight meetings.
- Wisconsin has gone UNDER the point total in four straight home games.