On Saturday, September 9th, the Wisconsin Badgers will host the Florida Atlantic Owls at Camp Randall Stadium in Madison, Wisconsin. The Badgers look for another victory at home, while the Owls hope to bounce back from a disappointing blowout loss.
The Florida Atlantic Owls (0-1) started off the Lane Kiffin era last week with a huge loss to Navy 42-19. They look to prevent Wisconin from duplicating Navy’s success on the ground, which was over 400 yards and 5 touchdowns.
Wisconsin (1-0) started off last week very slow and all of Madison, Wisconsin, was panicking. The Badgers had numerous self-inflicted mistakes that kept Utah State in the game, with a score of 10-10 heading into the half. The 2nd half saw the Badgers return to form by shutting out Utah State and scoring 49 points. This week, they look to put together two strong halves and run away with this game.
The spread opened with Wisconsin at -36 points. It has come down to 31 points. The Over/Under started at 57.5 points and has gone up slightly to 58.5 total points.
If Florida Atlantic can give up over 400 yards rushing at home versus Navy, then they can easily give up at least 250 yards rushing on the road at Wisconsin. The Badgers put up 248 yards on the ground last week and that was basically playing one half of football. With head coach Paul Chryst hammering home fundamentals and preaching on eliminating mistakes this week, expect Wisconsin to put up a lot of points on the Owls in this game and not allowing them to hang around for even a quarter.
Florida Atlantic was able to throw for almost 300 yards last week, but they only tallied 40 yards on the ground. You can expect that low rushing output to continue trending this week as Wisconsin’s defense looks ready after shutting out Utah State in the second half of last week’s game.
In reality, the Owls just don’t have the talent to compete against Wisconsin, especially on the road. Although their future is trending upward with Lane Kiffin, it’s not going to happen this week.
Once Wisconsin establishes their run game, and they definitely will, that will soften the defense for play action passes. Additionally, it will open up the field for Alex Hornibrook to shine. Last week, he threw for 244 yards, 3 touchdowns, 0 turnovers and a 65.2 completion percentage. This week, I expect him to match or exceed those numbers in what should be a route.
Florida Atlantic is 1-4-1 ATS in their last 6 games, 2-5 ATS in their last 7 games on the road, and 0-5 ATS against a team with a winning record. Wisconsin is 12-3-2 ATS in their last 17 games.
There’s no denying that Lane Kiffin is a talented coach and an offensive genius. Unfortunately, he doesn’t have enough talent to really succeed this year and definitely not this week. The Badgers got their swagger back in the 2nd half of last week including a 28 point third quarter where they outgained Utah State 251 to 43 total yards. Wisconsin forced 4 turnovers, won the battle for time of possession and easily pulled away. The Badgers might outscore the Owls by 50 this week.