Purdue Boilermakers(1-2SU,1-2ATS) vs.Wisconsin Badgers(2-1SU,3-0ATS)
College Football Week4
Date and Time:Saturday, September 21, 3:30pm ET
Where:Camp Randall Stadium
byEvergreen,Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread:Pur +24/UW -24
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Believe it or not, we are a quarter of the way through the college football
season and many teams now move into the conference portion of the schedule.The
Big Ten kicks off conference matchups this weekend as the Purdue
Boilermakers head to Madison to take on the Wisconsin Badgers.Bucky
is still feeling the sting from the loss at Arizona State that featured
the most bizarre end of game sequence that I have ever seen.We will see
how the Badgers shake off the emotions from the Terror in Tempe and the
Boilers will look to take another step forward after nearly bouncing Notre
Dame last week.
Despite losing the game, Wisconsin is getting some sort of credit due to the Desert Debacle and opened as 23 point favorites for Saturday.That line has now pushed to 24 at most online betting sites and the over/under total for the game is running at 47 and a half.The Boilers havent won a game against the Badgers, either straight up or against the spread, since 2003 but this is the largest point spread in that timeframe, so they may be able to at least break that ATS trend.
Purdue played its best game by far last weekend but fell short against the Irish, 31-24.No one really expected that close of a contest after the Boilers got routed by Cincinnati in the opener and barely downed the Sycamores of Indiana State a week later.Rob Henry threw all three of his touchdown passes against the Golden Domers and will have a chance to pick on a Badger secondary that was routinely abused by back shoulder throws last weekend.Akeem Hunt continues to do it all for Purdue as he leads the team in rushing, receiving and touchdowns but the Wisconsin defense will certainly key on him.B.J. Knauf is a difference maker in the return game but somebody in the Purdue skill group needs to step up and spark an offense that is ranked outside the top-110 in total yards, rushing yards and points (17 ppg).
Wisconsin got fat off UMass and Tennessee Tech in the first two weeks, pitching two defensive shutouts while running the ball all over the Camp Randall turf.A win against the Sun Devils wasnt to be but it appears that the 2013 version of the Badgers will be very similar to what we have seen in the past.The offensive line is big as ever, the running backs are premiere and Gary Andersen has the defense playing very sound despite the 32 given up at ASU.Melvin Gordon has been a revelation in the Badger backfield as the sophomore is averaging 12.9 yards per carry on the year with four touchdowns.He cannot be caught from behind and stays fresh throughout the game as James White and Corey Clement are exceptional runners alongside him.Purdue is good across the front seven but they will have their hands full against a rush offense that averages 337 yards per game.Joel Stave has been a bit shaky at times under center but seems to be able to make the plays when necessary and can seemingly find Jared Abbrederis at will even though the opposing secondary keys one the senior wideout.
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Darrell Hazell will be looking for his first conference win as Purdues head man but his Big Ten roots are deep after spending seven seasons with Ohio State as their receivers coach.He likely saw all he needed to see of the Badger offense, even as he coached his own offense, to know that you cant win without stopping that run game.The Boilermaker defense is its better unit and will have to play another notch up to remain competitive, especially on the road in Madison.The runstoppers for Purdue are on notice as a subpar effort there will lead to this one getting out of hand early and the Boiler offense hasnt really shown signs that it can move the ball consistently and cover up for the defense.
The Badger defense has a leg up against the Purdue offense on paper but has a few holes in the secondary that stem from youth and inexperience.Wisconsin corners were flagged for pass interference often last week and did not have an answer for the back shoulder routes in the second half.The Badger front seven should be able to shut down Purdues run game and the score may lead the Boilers to air it out early so the Sconnie secondary will see a lot of action again.Wisconsin has averaged 41 points per game in three contests so some coverage lapses shouldnt overly affect the outcome of the game, but they do have the potential to swing the ATS result.
Overall, I think this game is a snoozer from a straight up perspective. Sure, the Badgers might take a bit to shake off the bad feelings from last week but I think that winds up being more motivation than hangover and no one really likes playing a ticked off badger at home.Melvin Gordon left, James White right, play action to Abbrederis and the Badgers put plenty of points on the board to win this one without much stress.This should be a close one with the points however as Purdue should have some confidence of its own entering off their best effort of the young season.Hazell has these kids fired up by all accounts and the Boilers stay close enough to get an ATS win after finding a little success through the air.Wisconsin 42 Purdue 20
EvergreensPick to Cover the Point Spread:PURDUE
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