Michigan Wolverines at Minnesota Golden Gophers Betting Preview
The Big Ten is back! After almost two months of college football, the Big Ten will finally return to action this weekend for an abbreviated eight-game schedule. There are no bye weeks, and every team will only have the next two months to make their mark on the 2020 season.
The Little Brown Jug will be on the line in the marquee Big Ten game this week. The Minnesota Golden Gophers have turned a corner under P.J. Fleck, but they have not had a lot of success against the Michigan Wolverines. Michigan is 41-4 against Minnesota since 1967.
College Football Betting Odds
We have yet to see any real movement in this game. Michigan opened as a field goal favorite, and that line has yet to move. The Wolverines are 7-2 ATS in their last nine games against the Golden Gophers, and the over has cashed in each of the last six meetings.
Minnesota Offense vs. Michigan Defense
The Golden Gophers might have the second-best offense in the Big Ten next to Ohio State. Minnesota ranked seventh in offensive SP+ in 2019, as Tanner Morgan had a breakout year throwing the ball to Rashod Bateman and Tyler Johnson. Both receivers finished with over 1,200 yards and 10 touchdowns, and Bateman will return for one more year.
Chris Autman-Bell figures to replace Johnson in this offense, and he caught 28 passes for 371 yards and five touchdowns last season. The key is Morgan though. His accuracy with the deep ball was excellent, as he averaged 10.2 YPA with 30 touchdowns against just seven interceptions.
Minnesota has a solid running back in Mohamed Ibrahim too. We saw Ibrahim run wild against Auburn, and he averaged 5.3 YPC on the season. This offensive line is solid as well, providing the time Morgan needs when making a decision in this RPO-heavy scheme.
Don Brown is one of the best defensive coordinators in the country though. His defenses have continually been some of the best in college football, and he will have the Wolverines ready.
Michigan Offense vs. Minnesota Defense
This is a big question mark for Jim Harbaugh and Michigan. Shea Patterson wasn’t the superstar many thought he would be in Ann Arbor, but he was pretty good, and the Wolverines will now go with the inexperienced Joe Milton.
Milton hasn’t spent much time on the field in two seasons at Michigan. He has thrown just 11 passes, and the rumors are that he is a high variance player. The talent seems to be there from how his teammates and coaches are talking, but he is currently lacking in consistency.
That means Harbaugh will likely lean on the ground game. Michigan has two great running backs in Zach Charbonnet and Hassan Haskins, and the return of star tackle Jalen Mayfield gives this offensive line a huge boost.
The Golden Gophers had a very good defense last year, but they lost a number of their playmakers. The loss of Antoine Winfield Jr. will really hurt, but Benjamin St-Juste and Coney Durr are solid cornerbacks. This front seven could be a problem though.
There are big questions for both teams, but Minnesota figures to have more answers on offense, so the Golden Gophers are a strong moneyline play in this game.Follow our Twitter account for the latest sports news and wagering odds, and come to