TV Schedule: Saturday, October 3 12 p.m. ET, ESPN
Location: Camp Randall Stadium, Madison, WI
Line: Wisconsin (-7)
The undefeated Iowa Hawkeyes enter this Saturday’s Big Ten matchup as an underdog away at Camp Randall Stadium. The Hawkeyes have had an impressive month of September, going 4-0 and getting key victories over in-state rival Iowa State and at home against the Pittsburgh Panthers. Fresh off a 62-16 win over North Texas, Iowa hopes to upset the No. 19 Wisconsin Badgers.
Iowa’s starting quarterback C.J. Beathard has had an outstanding season so far with nearly a 70 percent completion rate, throwing for six touchdowns to one interception, and rushing for three touchdowns as well. Starting running back Jordan Canzeri is averaging five yards per carry, and already has eight rushing touchdowns on the season.
After losing to Alabama in Week 1, the Badgers have walked over three non-Power 5 teams. With the exception of a 58-0 win over Miami (OH) in Week 2, the Badgers’ offense has not looked as explosive as it has been in recent years. Quarterback Joel Stave is having a good year so far, but has yet to show consistency in big games throughout his career.
With starting running back Corey Clement out for the next four to six weeks, the Badgers will rely on freshman Taiwan Deal and junior Dare Ogunbowale. The two have put up 571 yards rushing and seven touchdowns combined. Tanner McEvoy is an early MVP candidate for the Badgers, starting on both sides of the ball at wide receiver and at safety.
Iowa has a quarterback that has shown consistency, and the Hawkeyes have momentum after starting the season with a four game winning streak. This will be a tough matchup for the Badgers, as C.J. Beathard and the Iowa Hawkeyes will come to play. The Wisconsin running game has not been as dominant in 2015 as its been recent years, and the Badgers have yet to show that they can get the job done through the air. After playing three non-Power 5 teams, the Badgers will face a good Hawkeyes defense that is hungry for another win. I wouldn’t be surprised to see an upset on Saturday, but with home-field advantage at Camp Randall Stadium, I’m going with the Badgers to escape a loss at home.
Prediction: Wisconsin 27, Iowa 24