Michigan Wolverines vs Maryland Terrapins Pick
Maryland Terrapins (3-1 SU, 3-1 ATS) vs. Michigan Wolverines (4-1 SU, 2-3 ATS)
College Football Week 6
Date/Time: Saturday, October 6th, 2018 –12:00 PM ET
Where: Michigan Stadium – Ann Arbor, Michigan
TV: B1G Network
By: Keith Franks, NCAA Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Spread: Maryland +17.5 / Michigan -17.5
The Maryland Terrapins and the Michigan Wolverines will square off in a B1G conference match-up with divisional and conference implications on the line for both parties. The Terps will travel to the infamous Big House otherwise known as Michigan Stadium when the two teams meet at 12:00 PM ET on Saturday, October 6th, 2018. The contest will be televised live from Ann Arbor on the B1G Network. Since Maryland joined the B1G in 2014, the two teams have met every year. Maryland won that inaugural conference meeting in 2014 but since then the Wolverines have won the last three. Last year in College Park, Michigan made an example of the Terps defeating them 35-10 successfully covering the book’s 14.5-point line. Michigan is also 3-0 ATS against the Terrapins over this span.
Maryland Defeats Minnesota
The Terrapins come into this contest off an impressive 42-13 smashing of the Minnesota Golden Gophers at home two weeks ago, when we saw Maryland close as a 2.5-point favorite. Almost all takers were fading the Terrapins due an ugly loss they sustained against Temple in the week prior when they fell as a 15-point choice outright at home losing 35-14. A staple of Terrapin football is Maryland winning games they should lose while losing games they should win. The notable triumph over Texas a 12-point dog speaks into this narrative.
Given all the controversy that has surrounded this program in the offseason, Maryland has to be playing with house money here as they have already exceeded expectations in many rights. The Terrapins have had an extra week off to prepare for this affair and that in itself provides an edge to Maryland and its backers but it doesn’t just end there.
Michigan Rallies In Evanston
The Wolverines come into this contest off a 20-17 win against the up-start Northwestern Wildcats in Evanston, last week. In the aforementioned contest, the Wolverines scored 20 unanswered points to erase a 17-point deficit against the Wildcats. Overall, the victory marks Michigan’s fourth consecutive since losing to Notre Dame to coronate the 2018 season. The Maize and Blue also own dominant performances against Nebraska, Southern Methodist, and Western Michigan. Over this span, Michigan has gone 2-1 ATS as they have been impelled to cover some lofty point spreads against this overall mediocre competition.
The Wolverines the best defense in the country in total defense as they allow an astounding 232.6 yards of total defense per game. Michigan follows this up with the fourth-best passing defense (146.2 yards per game) and sixth-best defense against the run at 86.4 yards per game. Overall, Michigan allows just 14.8 points per game (11th nationally). The problem with Michigan is their offense is one dimensional and quarterback Shea Patterson has been relatively ineffective as a transfer quarterback and the Maize and Blue have averaged just 206.2 yards per game through the air. This gives teams a blueprint on how to stymie this bunch and the Terps are vicious against the run in their own rank as they are 17th nationally against the rush. This is bad news for Michigan’s hallmark running attack.
A Key Match: Michigan Against The Ghosts of Bucky and Sparty
The Wolverines have a huge meeting with Wisconsin in Ann Arbor and then a pivotal rivalry affair with Michigan State in the following fixture after this clash with Maryland. Both of these teams have been perpetual thorns in the side of Michigan over the last few years and you have to wonder if Michigan will be caught looking past Maryland as it focuses on the two teams that have been skeletons in the Wolverines’ closet.
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Take Maryland +17.5
In addition to the possible look-ahead spot here, additional week of rest for Maryland, and the general bias fostered toward the Wolverines given the fact that Michigan has treated the Terrapins as nothing more than glorified chore, you have to also wonder how Michigan will handle this meeting after a 17-point comeback on the road, last week. Generally speaking, victories of this nature take a toll on teams in their follow-up and can render the Wolverines prone for a let-down here against Maryland. By no means are we implying that an upset is imminent but it is possible here as the Terps are juiced up heading into Ann Arbor. Lest we forget this is the same team that already defeated Texas earlier this year when no one gave them a shot at beating the Longhorns at FedEx Field. This game has a similar feel. Take the points.