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College Football Free Pick: Wisconsin vs Michigan

October 13, 2018

Week 7 of the college football regular season features a Big Ten showdown between two ranked teams when the No. 10th ranked Wisconsin Badgers visit the No. 13 ranked Michigan Wolverines in Ann Arbor. Michigan has won 6 of the last 7 played at home against Wisconsin.

The current line has Michigan favored by 10 points with the over/under sitting on 49.

Wisconsin defeated Nebraska in its last outing 41-24 and has now won 18 straight regular season Big Ten games. The Badgers must overcome a Michigan defense that is ranked No. 1 in the nation in yards allowed at 230.5 per game.

Wisconsin’s talented running back Jonathan Taylor had 221 yards rushing with three touchdowns against Nebraska, including a run of 88 yards for a touchdown. In 19 career games with the Badgers, Taylor has rushed for 200 yards or more five times.

The Badgers starting safety Scott Nelson must sit out the game’s first half on Saturday due to being ejected in the Nebraska win for targeting.

The Badgers may also be without three other defensive starters as two cornerbacks Cesar Williams and Deron Harrell are questionable and Isaiah Loudermilk will be a game-time decision.

Last week Michigan easily beat Maryland 42-21 to extend its winning streak to five straight. Michigan has now scored 40 points or more in four consecutive home games. This meeting with Wisconsin starts a stretch of three tough games for the Wolverines that include Michigan State followed by Penn State.

Michigan starting quarterback Shea Patterson played one of his best games since joining Michigan last week completing 19 of his 27 passes for 283 yards with three touchdowns in the Wolverines win against Maryland.

Michigan tight end Zach Gentry had seven receptions for 112 yards and Karan Higdon ran for 103 yards topping the 100-yard rushing mark for his fourth consecutive game.

Defensively, the Wolverines will likely have Rashan Gary back as the defensive end has recovered from his shoulder injury. Aubrey Solomon, who plays nose tackle, could return after missing five games due to surgery on his knee.

Prediction: The Michigan defense is the big key in this game. If the Wolverines can hold Jonathan Taylor in check then Michigan will easily cover the double-digit point spread. However, if Taylor can regularly gain big chunks of yards and give the Badgers second down and short often, than the Michigan defense will become off balance and give Wisconsin a chance to steal this game. Look for Michigan to succeed in containing Taylor and win and cover 34-21.

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