Norte Dame Fighting Irish (8-0) vs Northwestern Wildcats (5-3)Date : 11/03/2018
Time : 7:15 pm EST
Location : Ryan Field, Evanston, Illinois
Pick, Prediction, & Preview:
Norte Dame Fighting Irish vs Northwestern Wildcats
The 3rd ranked Notre Dame Fighting Irish will visit Ryan Field in Evanston, Illinois, to battle the Northwestern Wildcats on Saturday night at 7:15 pm EST. The Irish remained unbeaten in 2018 by picking up a 44-22 road win over the Navy Midshipmen as they allowed 294 yards to the Midshipmen, however, put up 254 yards on Navy’s defense while collecting two turnovers on the day. The Northwestern Wildcats won their fourth straight game last weekend versus the Wisconsin Badgers as they picked up the 31-17 home victory as they capitalized on three Badgers fumbles while also racking up 182 yards on the ground en route to the victory. Furthermore, the Wildcats also picked up a 43-40 road win in the last matchup amongst these teams which dates to November 15, 2014 as they also covered as 17 points road underdogs.
Norte Dame Fighting Irish's Latest Performance :
The Irish remained undefeated after a blowout road win over the struggling Midshipmen in their last outing thanks to Dexter Williams putting up 142 yards along with three TD’s for a rushing attack that collected 254 yards on the ground. Ian Book threw two touchdowns on 330 passing yards for the game with Jafar Armstrong having five catches for 64 yards. The defense, however, allowed 292 yards on the ground to Navy with Malcolm Perry having 133 yards on twelve carries. Also, Navy committed two turnovers in the contest while converting just 17% on third down conversions. Notre Dame, overall, is 4-1 ATS in their last five games after beginning the season 1-2 ATS. With that being the case, they will look to crack the defense for Northwestern that is ranked in the top 50 in pass/rush defense for the year.
Northwestern Wildcats's Latest Performance :
Northwestern is in first place within the Big Ten West division while also winning four straight as their offense averaged 28 points during their stellar streak. On the other hand, the defense allowed just 20 points during this time which is slightly lower than their average for the year (23.6). Nonetheless, the defense allowed just 17 points to the then-5-2 Wisconsin Badgers as they jumped out to a 31-10 lead early in the fourth quarter after an Isiah Bowser two-yard touchdown run. And while the Wildcats only racked up 349 total yards for the game, Northwestern recovered three fumbles on the day while putting up 182 yards in the contest with Bowser having 117 yards along with a score in the contest.
Clayton Thorson passed for 167 yards and a TD, but, threw three picks in the game, his seventh interception in four games. In all, the Wildcats are on a high at this point in the season, however, with the Irish defense allowing just 19 points per game in their last four outings, Thorson will certainly need to clean up the mistakes this weekend.
How Norte Dame Fighting Irish & Northwestern Wildcats Matchup.
Vegas Odds, Offshore Odds, & Odds ATS:
Notre Dame is 5-3 ATS while the OU is 4-4
Northwestern is 4-3-1 ATS while the OU is 4-4
In-Depth Analysis of each team:
Notre Dame is 3-0 ATS in their three road games this season as they won each game by an average of 21 points. On the other hand, Northwestern is 2-3 in five home games this year (2-0 in last two) while being 2-2-1 ATS. With the momentum and confidence that both teams have obtained within the past few weeks will certainly make this game a competitive and interesting one. Look for the Irish to bring the pressure on defense throughout in which to get to Thorson while using their rushing attack to be the tip of the spear in allowing for Book and company to have passing opportunities as the game wears on.
Against The Spread Selection: Pick: Notre Dame Righting Irish -9.5
My reason for the pick :
The Irish will come out with a win in this contest because they have proven that their defense is for real while their offense possesses a powerful rushing attack. Also, Book has been spectacular this year for Notre Dame and will certainly test the pass secondary for Northwestern that is allowing 220 yards per game. And while the Wildcats should be given credit for their winning way thus far, this will come to an end this weekend as the Irish defense will be just too much for an up and down offense for Northwestern as Thorson continues to be very inconsistent.
Totals Selection: Pick: Under 53.5
My reason for the prediction :
Both teams have stout defenses as they have shown all season. With that being said, expect the score to remain well below its set limit for this game. Of course, Notre Dame will take advantage of its opportunities throughout while locking down the offense for Northwestern during the game. In all, the under, which has been the play in three of the last five game for Northwestern, will indeed be the strong play in this matchup.
Betting trends for Norte Dame Fighting Irish:
- Fighting Irish are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 road games.
- Over is 13-3 in Fighting Irish last 16 games after accumulating more than 280 yards passing in their previous game.
- Fighting Irish are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games overall.
Betting trends for Northwestern Wildcats:
- Wildcats are 3-0-1 ATS in their last 4 games on grass.
- Wildcats are 5-0 ATS in their last 5 games in November.
- Wildcats are 6-1 ATS in their last 7 games after accumulating less than 170 yards passing in their previous game.