This Friday the Iowa Hawkeyes (7-4) will host the Nebraska Cornhuskers (4-7) in clash of two programs that aren’t very fond of one another. Kickoff is set for 12:00 EST at Kinnick Stadium and will be televised nationally on FOX.
Taking a look at the Week 13 NCAAF odds, the books opened up this game at Iowa -7.5, but it’s at the Hawkeyes -10 at most places now. The total for this contest is currently at 53 points.
Iowa vs Nebraska Vegas Game Odds & Betting Predictions
The Cornhuskers continued their strong finish to the season with a 9-6 win at home over Michigan State as a slim 1-point favorite. It marked their first set of back-to-back wins under new head coach Scott Frost. Nebraska is now 3-1 after their 0-6 start, but what really stands out is how great they have been against the spread. Cornhuskers have covered the number in each of their last 6 games.
The Hawkeyes snapped a 3-game skid with an absolute thrashing of Illinois. Iowa won 63-0 on the road against the Fighting Illini, easily covering as a 16-point favorite. It was the worst lost suffered by Illinois in school history. The Hawkeyes put the game away early in the 2nd quarter with three touchdowns in a little over 2 minutes (2:07) to make it 28-0. Iowa had failed to cover each of their 3 previous games, but are still a strong 7-3-1 ATS overall.
The Hawkeyes have won each of the last 3 meetings in the series and the last two haven’t been close. Iowa barely squeaked by 28-20 at Nebraska in 2015, but won 40-10 at home in 2016 and 56-14 in Lincoln last year.
Free College Football Betting Selection: Iowa -10
My early lean here would be to lay the points with the Hawkeyes. While I’m a big of Scott Frost and have huge expectations for Nebraska in the coming years, I just don’t think they have what takes to be competitive on the road against a team like Iowa. I get they only lost by 5 at Ohio State and by 3 at Northwestern (in OT), but it’s more about the matchup and conditions that I feel give the Hawkeyes the edge.
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As of right now there’s a 60% chances of rain in Iowa City for this game and winds are expected to blowing straight across the field at close to 15 mph. This is going to make it extremely difficult to effectively throw the football and will come down to who can have more success running the football.
I know Nebraska comes in ranked 28th in rushing at 215.3 ypg, but this Iowa defense is built to stop the run. Always has been under Kirk Ferenctz. They are 8th in the country against the run this year, giving up just 100.8 ypg. I would say they have a very similar defense to Michigan State, which just held Nebraska to 103 rushing yards on 30 attempts. The only reason the Cornhuskers won that game, was because of how anemic that Michigan State offense is.
I’m not saying Iowa’s offense is elite, but they are averaging a solid 32.9 ppg in conference play and will be facing a Nebraska defense that is giving up 34.7 ppg and 472.5 yards/game in Big Ten play. Just a couple of weeks ago, Illinois rushed for 383 yards against that Cornhuskers defense.
I just think Nebraska will have a tough time moving the ball and if they get behind, they are going to have to throw in really tough conditions. That’s likely to lead to a turnover or two and give the Hawkeyes the opportunity to pull away for the cover. Give me Iowa -10!