The #7 overall Minnesota Golden Gophers (9-0) travel to Iowa City this weekend for a BIG 10 battle against the #23 overall Iowa Hawkeyes (6-3). Kickoff is set for 4:00 PM EST on November 16th at Kinnick Stadium and the game will be nationally televised on FOX.
Taking a look at the Week 12 college football odds, Iowa opened as a 3-point home favorite earlier this week. The spread hasn’t moved at all after early betting, as the Hawkeyes are currently available at -3. The total for the game is sitting at 44.5 points.
Vegas Betting Preview & Game Odds: Iowa vs Minnesota
Minnesota managed to stay unbeaten last weekend, knocking off #9 overall Penn State 31-26 at home to move to 9-0 on the season overall. The Golden Gophers had a 24-13 lead at the half and managed to hold on down the stretch despite getting outscored 13-7 over the final two quarters of the game. QB Tanner Morgan was fantastic, going 18/20 for 339 passing yards and three touchdowns through the air. RB Rodney Smith had a tough time finding any running room on the ground, averaging only 2.8 yards per carry on a team-high 18 rushing attempts. The dynamic receiving duo of Rashod Bateman and Tyler Johnson was fantastic, combining for 307 yards and two touchdowns on 14 catches. Overall, Minnesota gained well over 400 total yards of offense and found the end zone four times in the victory.
The Golden Gophers had a fairly average outing on the other side of the ball against Penn State, holding the Nittany Lions to three touchdowns despite giving up over 500 total yards of offense. Minnesota forced three interceptions but did have a tough time slowing down RB Journey Brown on the ground, as he racked up 124 rushing yards and two touchdowns on just 14 carries.
Iowa lost their third game of the season last weekend, falling 24-22 on the road against #15 overall Wisconsin to drop to 6-3 overall. The Hawkeyes have up two touchdowns in the second quarter and couldn’t find a way to regain the lead after the half despite outscoring the Badgers 16-3 over the final 15 minutes of the game. QB Nathan Stanley went 17/28 for 208 passing yards and two touchdowns through the air while Toren Young led the way with nine carries for 44 rushing yards on the ground. Tyrone Tracy Jr. absolutely torched the Wisconsin secondary, hauling in five catches for 130 receiving yards and a touchdown. As a whole, Iowa generated over 300 total yards of offense and scored two touchdowns in the loss.
The Hawkeyes were mediocre defensively against Wisconsin, giving up over 450 total yards of offense and three touchdowns. Iowa struggled to slow down Badgers WR Quintez Cephus, as he recorded five catches for 94 yards and a touchdown.
NCAA Football Betting Predictions & Free Pick: Minnesota +3
It’s really hard to bet against the surging Golden Gophers right now, especially after their extremely impressive win last weekend against Penn State. While this game could easily go either way, I don’t see how I can turn down three points in a matchup that Minnesota seems to have a pretty decent shot at winning outright. Not only have they yet to lose a single game all season, the Golden Gophers are also a very solid 6-2-1 against the spread through their first nine games – including a 2-0-1 record ATS in three road games. Even though Iowa has also played well for the most part this year, they have already suffered three losses and have failed to cover the number in three out of their last five games at Kinnick Stadium.
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Minnesota has struggled a little bit in recent years against the Hawkeyes, going 0-3 against the spread over their last three meetings. However, this really is the best Golden Gophers squad in several decades, so their historical struggles in this matchup aren’t the least bit concerning to me. Not only are they a perfect 6-0 against the spread in their last six games overall, they are also 7-0 ATS over their last seven battles with BIG 10 opponents. On the other side, Iowa is a remarkably average 4-5 against the spread though nine games this year. I’m going to take the three points and roll with the slight road underdog on Saturday afternoon – give me Minnesota to cover and win outright!