Indiana vs. Northwestern fearless prediction and game preview.
Indiana vs. Northwestern Broadcast
Date: Saturday, November 2nd
Game Time: 7:00 ET
Venue: Memorial Stadium, Bloomington, IN
Indiana (6-2) vs. Northwestern (1-6) Game Preview
Why Northwestern Will Win
The defense continues to keep the team in games. It’s not getting any help from the offense, but all it’ll take is just a little bit of scoring and a little bit of pop, and this thing can turn around fast.
The D is terrific against the better passing teams – allowing just 180 yards per game – and that’s Indiana’s strength. The Hoosiers are leading the Big Ten in passing, but the Wildcats are able to keep everything locked up – there just aren’t a whole slew of yards after the catch.
To pull this off, though, Northwestern has to win the turnover battle. It’s struggling with giveaways, and it’s not coming up with enough picks, but IU isn’t going to take the ball away and it’s not going to win the turnover margin.
The Wildcats have to own the special teams battle, and they have to rely on a whole slew of Indiana penalties – expect at least seven – to catch a few breaks, because …
Why Indiana Will Win
The Northwestern offense doesn’t work at a whole other level.
Only two teams in college football average fewer than 14 points per game – Akron and Northwestern. The Wildcats are dead last in the country averaging 10.7 points per game scoring ten or fewer five times in the seven games.
The Hoosier defense isn’t doing a bad job. It’s allowing just 324 yards per game, partly because the short-to-midrange passing game controls everything. IU dominates the time of possession battle, keeping the ball for well over 33 minutes per game.
The only way this works for Northwestern is to keep its offense on the field and goes on a few long, sustained drives, and that’s not going to happen. The Northwestern passing game doesn’t exist, failing to hit half of its passes and averaging a pathetic 4.1 yards per throw with two touchdowns.
Just a few scores for IU should put this away.
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What’s Going To Happen
The pressure is off. Indiana isn’t going to win the Big Ten East, and it’s FINALLY bowl eligible again after coming so close the last year years. Now the program is playing with house money, and it’s going to play like it.
Northwestern’s offense will continue to sputter, but the defense – again – will do just enough to keep this from being brutal. It won’t be enough against a Hoosier O that will get a few early scoring drives and coast from there.
Indiana vs. Northwestern Prediction, Line
Must See Rating: 2.5
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