Iowa is trying to ice down a Big 10 division championship, but Minnesota would lose to play spoiler. How are we betting this border rivalry battle against the college football odds?
Gophers-Hawkeyes Betting Odds
This week's college football odds market opened Iowa as an 11.5-point favorite over Minnesota, with a total of right around 46 points, and both those numbers held fairly steady through the week.
Iowa, at 9-0 SU, 6-3 ATS and 5-0 in Big 10 play leads the West Division by a game and a tiebreaker over Wisconsin, with just three to play. And winning the division gets the Hawkeyes a shot at a berth in the national championship playoff.
Last week Iowa won at Indiana 35-27, squeaking out the cover as a seven-point road favorite. The Hawkeyes took a 7-0 lead less than a minute into the game on Akrum Wadley's 65-yard scoring run, fell down 17-14 late in the second quarter, but immediate drove for a touchdown that gave them the lead for good. Iowa later grabbed a 35-20 advantage early in the fourth quarter, then held on from there.
On the night the Hawkeyes outgained the Hoosiers 467-407, and outrushed them, but only by 234-227.
Iowa is now 10-0 SU, 7-3 ATS when CJ Beathard has started at quarterback.
Minnesota, at 4-5 both SU and ATS this season, needs two wins in its last three games to become blow-eligible. The Gophers began this season 3-1, the only loss a 23-17 decision against TCU. They then started 1-1 in Big 10 play, losing badly to Northwestern, then winning at Purdue 41-13. But Minnesota has since lost three straight games, and its head coach, after falling at Ohio State last week 28-14.
The Gophers held the Buckeyes to a scoreless tie late into the second quarter, but gave up two scores, the first on a pick-six, in the last five minutes to fall down 14-0 at the half. Minnesota then trailed 21-0 into the fourth, but scored twice, the second time with two minutes to go, to make things interesting, before giving up a meaningless OSU touchdown a few plays later.
The Gophers couldn't pull the upset, but they held on for the cover as 23-point dogs.
On the night Minnesota got outgained 376-314, and outrushed 189-33.
Two weeks ago the Gophers, in their first game without Coach Kill, lost at home to Michigan 29-26 on a failed quarterback sneak in the final seconds. But they covered as 10-point home dogs.
Gophers-Hawkeyes Totals Trends
Minnesota is 5-4 on the UNDERS this season, as Gophers games have averaged just under 45 points.
Iowa is 5-3 on the OVERS, as Hawkeyes games have averaged just under 49 points.
Gophers-Hawkeyes Recent History
Iowa once dominated this rivalry, the battle for Floyd of Rosedale, taking eight of nine meetings from 2001-09, but Minnesota has won three of the last five meetings, and covered six of the last nine. Last year the Gophers put their biggest hurtin' on the Hawkeyes since 1998, romping to a 51-14 victory in Minneapolis.
Minnesota spotted Iowa the first touchdown of the game last year, then scored the next 51 points, in a shocking blowout. On the day the Gophers outgained the Hawkeyes 429-205, outrushed them 291-84 and won time of possession by over 16 minutes.
These two teams have played just one common foe so far this season; Minnesota lost to Northwestern back in early October 27-0, while two weeks later Iowa beat the Wildcats 40-10. The Hawkeyes outgained Northwestern by almost 300 yards, while the Gophers got outgained by the 'Cats by 140 yards.
Gophers-Hawkeyes College Football Picks
Iowa is outrushing opponents this season by over 100 yards per game, while Minnesota is getting outrushed by about 10 YPG. Also, the Gophers are banged-up, all over the place. And the Hawkeyes are playing for big stakes. So while the spread on this game might be slightly inflated toward the home team, we like Iowa, minus the points. Also, Minnesota might have a hard time getting into double-digits in this one, so we're thinking UNDER.
College Football Picks: Hawkeyes -10 and UNDER 46 at Bovada