Nebraska Michigan Odds
The Nebraska Cornhuskers (6-2, 3-1 Big Ten) travel to face the Michigan Wolverines (6-2, 2-2 Big Ten) on Saturday, November 9. These teams have split their two meetings as Big Ten opponents over the past two seasons with the home team winning each time.
This Big Ten battle will be nationally televised on ABC at 3:30 EST Saturday afternoon. Taking a look at the odds in Las Vegas, I find Michigan as a 7-point favorite over Nebraska with a total set of 57.5 points.
Why Michigan Covers
The Wolverines have clearly protected the Big House to the best of their ability in 2013. They are a perfect 5-0 straight up and 4-1 against the spread at home this year. They are outscoring opponents 46.6 to 24.6 in Ann Arbor, or by an average of 22.0 points per game. That includes wins over the likes of Notre Dame (41-30), Minnesota (42-13) and Indiana (63-47).
Amazingly, Nebraska has only played two road games all season. It fell 23-34 at Minnesota in its last away game, while its win came over Big Ten bottom feeder Purdue. The Huskers have played an extremely soft schedule this season, and there’s no question that this will be their biggest test of the year so far. With the way their defense has been playing, they could be in trouble.
Michigan is putting up 37.9 points and 411.6 yards per game on the season. It will be up against a Nebraska defense that is yielding 399.9 yards per game on the season. That’s pretty poor when you consider that the eight teams the Huskers have faced have combined to average 396 yards per game offensively, so they haven’t had to go up against too many good offenses. The exception was UCLA, which the Huskers yielded 41 points and 504 total yards to in a 21-41 loss on September 14.
Plays against underdogs of 3.5 to 10 points (NEBRASKA) – in a game involving 2 very good teams – outscoring opponents by 10+ PPG after 7+ games, after a win by 3 or less points are 22-3 (88%) ATS since 1992. Michigan is 6-0 against the spread off a road loss over the last three seasons. The Cornhuskers are 2-9-1 against the number in their last 12 road games. Worse yet, Nebraska is 0-8-1 against the spread in its last nine road games vs. a team with a winning home record. The Wolverines are 6-1 against the number in their last seven home games.
Why Nebraska Covers
The Cornhuskers have a lot of momentum heading into this one after completing a hail mary to beat Northwestern 27-24 at home this past weekend. They really dominated that game and it shouldn’t have come down to it, but their four turnovers made it closer than it should have been. They outgained the Wildcats 472-326 for the game.
Nebraska has certainly been solid offensively all season, averaging 38.2 points and 467.6 yards per game to rank 30th in the country in total offense. It is scoring 33.2 points and giving up just 21.0 points en route to a 3-1 record in Big Ten play. Michigan is giving up 27.0 points per game on the season and 33.0 points per game in Big Ten action. There are clearly some holes in this Michigan defense that Nebraska can exploit.
The Wolverines are in a hangover situation. They were beat down by a final of 6-29 at in-state rival Michigan State last weekend. That game really put a damper on their chances of winning their division, and they could have a hard time recovering this week. Remember, this is a Michigan team that needed a fourth quarter comeback to beat winless Connecticut 24-21, and a goal line stand in the closing seconds to top Akron 28-24.
Michigan is 24-42 against the spread in its last 66 games as a favorite of 3.5 to 10 points. The Wolverines are 10-23-1 against the number in their last 34 games vs. a team with a winning record. Michigan is 13-30 against the spread in its last 43 conference games. The Wolverines are 5-17 against the number in their last 22 November contests.
Michigan is 13-30 against the spread in its last 43 conference games.
My Early Lean: Nebraska +7