Last week: (3-2)
Ouch. I need help here people, I'm floundering somewhere around 21st in the Pick'em. Not good. Let's turn this thing around. All lines courtesy of BSD (I love it when other people do my work for me).
Iowa (3-2) at Michigan State (4-1) Line (Sparty -9.5)
Sure everyone knows about Javon Ringer but did you know Iowa has the Big Ten's second leading rusher in Shonn Greene at 133 yards per game? It's likely that Michigan State will face its toughest rush defense so far this season (4th in conference) so this could be a boring battle of wills. From the 'oh by the way' stat book, the home team has won the last eight meetings in the series.
TNL's Trooper: Sparty
Indiana (2-2) at Minnesota (4-1) Line (Minny -7.5)
Can Minnesota win its first Big Ten game since 2006? Can Indiana win at the Metrodome for the first time since 1993? Minnesota's 3rd ranked (Big Ten) offense goes up against the league's worst pass defense. Quarterback Kellen Lewis continues to be the team's leading passer and rusher – stop him and you stop Indiana and I think the Gophers will.
TNL's Trooper: Minnesota
No. 6 Penn State (5-0) at Purdue (2-2) Line (JoePa -12.5)
Purdue ranks last in the Big Ten in total defense (439.2 ypg), rush defense (194.5 ypg), and pass defense (245ypg). Penn State ranks first in the Big Ten in rushing offense (268 ypg), total offense (515 ypg) and scoring offense (50 ppg). Yeah… not good.
TNL's Trooper: Penn State
Illinois (2-2) at Michigan (2-2) Line (DickRod -2.5)
Illinois hasn't beaten Michigan since 1999 and the Wolverines are coming off the second biggest comeback in school history. There's a reason they had to have the second biggest comeback in school history: they aren't very good. Illinois has more to prove and Michigan is still trying to find an identity, don't let Wisconsin's poor game management fool you into believing Michigan has righted the ship. Illinois plays great with a lead and they'll get one in Ann Arbor.
TNL's Trooper: the fighting Zookers
No. 14 Ohio State (4-1) at No. 18 Wisconsin (3-1) Line (Sweatervest -2.5)
The Cheese Heads get back Travis Beckum in full High Def condition in time to meet THEosu. In my entire adult life I've clung to one theory in football: when you lose in horrific fashion (as Wisconsin did last week) you do one of two things – you either give up and collapse completely or you bounce back and play the best you've played all year. Take the later and the home team in this one.
TNL's Trooper: Wisconsin