The #19 overall Iowa Hawkeyes (8-3) travel to Lincoln on Friday for a BIG 10 West showdown with the Nebraska Cornhuskers (5-6). Kickoff is set for 12:30 PM EST on November 29th from Tom Osborne Field at Memorial Stadium and the game will be televised on the BIG 10 Network.
Taking a look at the Week 14 college football odds, Iowa opened as a 5.5-point road favorite earlier this week. The spread has come down by half a point after early betting, as the Hawkeyes are currently available at -5. The total for the game is sitting at 44 points.
Vegas Betting Preview & Game Odds: Nebraska vs Iowa
Iowa won their second straight game last weekend, beating Illinois 19-10 at home to improve to 8-3 on the season overall. The Hawkeyes had a 13-7 lead at the half and managed to hold on for the victory down the stretch, giving up just a single field goal over the final 30 minutes of the game. QB Nathan Stanley went 18/35 for 308 passing yards through the air while RB Tyler Goodson led the way on the ground with 38 rushing yards and a touchdown. Ihmir Smith-Marsette led the way for the receiving corps, making four catches for 121 yards. Overall, Iowa gained almost 400 total yards and found the end zone once on offense in the win.
The Hawkeyes had yet another strong outing on the other side of the ball against Illinois, holding the Fighting Illini to just one touchdown despite giving up close to 350 total yards of offense. Iowa was especially tough against the pass, forcing two interceptions and allowing only 144 yards through the air.
Nebraska snapped a four game losing slide last weekend, crushing Maryland 54-7 on the road to improve to 5-6 on the season overall. The Cornhuskers scored 34 unanswered points in the first half and cruised to victory from there, giving up only a single touchdown the entire game. QB Adrian Martinez had an up and down game through the air, going 16/25 for 194 passing yards and two touchdowns but also getting picked off once as well. Martinez also chipped in on the ground, rushing for a team-high 94 yards and a score on just ten carries. J.D Spielman absolutely torched the Terrapins secondary, exploding for 104 yards and two touchdowns on a game-high seven receptions. As a whole, Nebraska generated well over 500 total yards of offense and scored six touchdowns in the blowout win.
The Cornhuskers were fantastic defensively against Maryland, holding the Terps to just over 200 total yards of offense and one touchdown. Nebraska was almost impenetrable through the air, surrendering only 57 passing yards the entire game.
NCAA Football Betting Predictions & Free Pick: Iowa -5
As tempted as I am by the OVER on 44 total points scored, I just can’t quite commit to pulling the trigger due to how well the Hawkeyes have played defensively all season. While their offense has certainly failed to do a lot of damage on the scoreboard in recent weeks, their defense has given up more than 20 points just once the entire year. Therefore, I’m probably leaning towards laying the five points and rolling with the road underdog in this BIG 10 West battle, as I’m not sure that the Cornhuskers will find a way to score more than just a couple of touchdowns – at most. It is also important to note that Iowa beat the previously unbeaten Minnesota Golden Gophers by five points back in Week 12 – a school that crushed Nebraska 34-7 on October 12th.
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Iowa has had the upper hand against the spread in this BIG 10 rivalry as of late, covering the number in two out of their last three meetings with the Cornhuskers. Nebraska has also struggled at home this season, going a brutal 1-5 against the spread through their first six outings at Memorial Stadium. They are also just 1-7 ATS over their last eight games overall. On the other side, the Hawkeyes are a rock-solid 4-1 against the spread in their last five road games against the Cornhuskers. I’m going to lay the five points and take a shot with the team that has one of the best defenses in the entire country on Friday afternoon – give me Iowa to cover!