2022 Big Ten totals of wins, odds, choices: the predictions for each team as Ohio State, Michigan faces big numbers

The Big Ten saw a lot of surprises last season. Michigan won the conference for the first time since 2004 and went to the College Football Playoff, while Ohio State and Michigan State played in the six New Year’s bowls. In the west division of the conference, Minnesota recovered from a 2020 dip by winning nine games, as did Purdue, which scored its highest win total since 2003.

On the other hand, Penn State had another mediocre season (7-6) and Northwestern followed a division title with a 3-9 record. Will we see as many surprises in 2022 or will things return to normal? I have no idea, but that has never stopped me from trying to peak in the future anyway. Let’s take a look at Caesars Sportsbook’s 2022 Big Ten win totals.

Illinois

Over / under 4.5 wins

  • Wins: Wyoming, Chattanooga, Minnesota, Purdue, northwest
  • Losses: Indiana, Virginia, Wisconsin, Iowa, Nebraska, State of Michigan, Michigan

Analyses: Illinois’ total winnings were set at 3.5 last season, but they won five games on Bret Bielema’s debut thanks largely to one of the best defenses in the Big Ten. With a change to the offensive coordinator, the Illini are hoping to improve by at least one victory to reach the ball. I think the team is more likely to finish 4-8 or worse. The first four games are going to be huge. Choice: over 4.5 (-110)

Indiana

Over / under 4 wins

  • Wins: Illinois, Idaho, Western Kentucky, Maryland, Purdue
  • Losses: Cincinnati, Nebraska, Michigan, Rutgers, Penn State, Ohio State, Michigan State

Analyses: I don’t think Indiana was as bad as its record suggested last season, and a friendlier schedule should help the Hoosiers step forward into 2021. There are winnable home games against Illinois, Maryland and Purdue, and the toughest games are all on the road except for Michigan. That said, the Hoosiers probably regret scheduling Cincinnati in noncon. Life in the Big Ten East is hard enough without adding playoff teams to the schedule. Choice: over 4 (-120)

Iowa

Over / under 7.5 wins

  • Wins: State of South Dakota, State of Iowa, Nevada, Rutgers, Illinois, Northwestern, Wisconsin, Nebraska
  • Losses: Michigan, State of Ohio, Purdue, Minnesota

Analyses: When I first saw the Iowa total, I thought “it’s too low”, but then I looked at the schedule and saw the Hawkeyes having the pleasure of attracting both Michigan and the state of Ohio from the east . The good news is that the key division games against Wisconsin and Nebraska will be held in Iowa City, as will the annual clash with the state of Iowa. While the 7-5 is definitely in play, barring disaster or injury, the 8-4 seems within reach. Choice: over 7.5 (+100)

Maryland

Over / under 6 wins

  • Wins: Buffalo, Charlotte, SMU, Purdue, Northwestern, Rutgers
  • Losses: Michigan, State of Michigan, Indiana, Wisconsin, State of Penn, State of Ohio

Analyses: Maryland season prepares to be a roller coaster. The Terps are expected to start 3-0 before consecutive games against Wolverines and Spartans. Then there is a middle ground before a match between Wisconsin, Penn State and Ohio State in consecutive weeks. This could make the final against Rutgers much more difficult than expected! The most likely outcome here is a push, but if forced to take a side, I more often see an unexpected defeat than an upset victory. Choice: Less than 6 (-125)

Michigan

Over / under 9.5 wins

  • Wins: Colorado State, Hawaii, UConn, Maryland, Iowa, Indiana, Penn State, Rutgers, Nebraska, Illinois
  • Losses: State of Michigan, State of Ohio

Analyses: I know a lot of people expect the Wolverines to take a big step back considering everyone they lost, but this should still be one of the best teams in the Big Ten and a major contender for the conference title behind Ohio State. The non-conference schedule is super soft, and a road trip to Iowa is the only obstacle I see before the mid-October showdown with Penn State. Michigan is unlikely to win the Big Ten or reach the playoffs again, but it’s not hard to find 10 scheduled wins. Choice: over 9.5 (-115)

State of Michigan

Over / under 7.5 wins

  • Wins: Western Michigan, Akron, Minnesota, Maryland, Wisconsin, Michigan, Illinois, Rutgers, Indiana
  • Losses: State of Washington, Ohio, State of Penn

Analyses: I wrote last week that no one should be surprised if the The Spartans fall back to Earth a little bit in 2022, but this total of victories is too drastic a step. The Spartans may be slightly worse offensively, but they should be better offensively and some of their most challenging games (Ohio State and Wisconsin) are at home. If they go away and beat Washington in early September, I don’t see how they can’t reach eight wins. If they lose, they will probably get there anyway. Choice: over 7.5 (-125)

Minnesota

Over / under 7.5 wins

  • Wins: State of New Mexico, Western Illinois, Colorado, Purdue, Rutgers, Northwestern, Iowa
  • Losses: State of Michigan, Illinois, Penn State, Nebraska, Wisconsin

Analyses: Minnesota fans, does it help if I tell you I’m surprised I got the below here? I didn’t expect it, but after the typically easy program, things get a lot more difficult. Not only do the Gophers draw Michigan State and Penn State from the east, but they both hit the road. There are also away games against Wisconsin, Nebraska and Illinois. Also, even though I know the coaches are confident in a new offensive line, I have to see it first and I have more significant concerns about the top seven having to replace some key players from a tough defense last season. Choice: Less than 7.5 (-125)

Nebraska

Over / under 7.5 wins

  • Wins: Northwestern, North Dakota, Southern Georgia, Indiana, Illinois, Minnesota
  • Losses: Oklahoma, Rutgers, Purdue, Michigan, Wisconsin, Iowa

Analyses: Can the greatest 3-9 team of all time improve to 8-4 in 2022? Considering Nebraska played as a 6-6 team last year, technically it wouldn’t be a big leap, but I’m not going to bet on it. Honestly, I don’t know what anyone has seen from Nebraska in the past eight years that would make them optimistic about anything. However, I think we will see a rebound from many of the horrific breaks this team went through last year. The greatest 3-9 team of all time will be a perfectly mediocre 6-6 team. It might even go up to 7-5, but betting on 8-4 seems absurd. Choice: Less than 7.5 (-125)

North Western

Over / under 3.5 wins

  • Wins: Duke, Southern Illinois, Miami (OH)
  • Losses: Nebraska, Penn State, Wisconsin, Maryland, Iowa, Ohio State, Minnesota, Purdue, Illinois

Analyses: I’ll start by saying that I wouldn’t make this bet if I were you. I will not. I’m planning that Northwestern won’t win the Big Ten this year, which is the kind of thing that happens before the Wildcats find a way to win 10 games by scoring just 17 points per game. Even if I don’t put anything beyond this program, there aren’t many obvious reasons to bet it will happen. So if you absolutely have to place one, I would go under, but I won’t join you. Choice: Less than 3.5 (+110)

State of Ohio

Wins Over / Under 11

  • Wins: Notre Dame, State of Arkansas, Toledo, Wisconsin, Rutgers, State of Michigan, Iowa, State of Penn, Northwestern, Indiana, Maryland, Michigan
  • Losses: Nobody

Analyses: There is nothing that I enjoy less than predicting that a great team will remain undefeated. Winning is hard and going for an entire season without failing once is a high mountain to climb. But Ohio State is more likely to go 12-0 or 11-1 than anything else, so with the total set at 11, I don’t see how you can bet anything other than over. They will have one of the best attacks in the country, and if Jim Knowles improves their defense, this team will win the Big Ten and return to the College Football playoffs. Choice: Over 11 (-140)

Penn State

Over / under 8.5 wins

  • Wins: Purdue, Ohio, Central Michigan, Northwestern, Minnesota, Indiana, Maryland, Rutgers, State of Michigan
  • Losses: Auburn, Michigan, State of Ohio

Analyses: I strongly believe that Penn State is better than the team we have seen in the last two seasons. I don’t take what happened in the Big Ten in 2020 too seriously, and there are reasons to think the Nittany Lions will take a step forward this year. They are still one of the most talented teams in the conference and quarterback Sean Clifford will play under the same attacking coordinator in consecutive seasons for the first time in his career. Despite the loss of some key components, the defense should still be good. Finally, the program is not bad. Lions have Ohio State and Michigan State at home, and a road trip to Auburn won’t be as difficult as it seemed when it was planned. Choice: over 8.5 (-105)

Purdue

Over / under 7 wins

  • Wins: State of Indiana, Atlantic Florida, Nebraska, Iowa, Northwest
  • Losses: Penn State, Syracuse, Minnesota, Maryland, Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana

Analyses: Like Michigan State, Purdue is another team that I expect to take a step back in 2022. The difference is that I believe Purdue’s step back will be much more important. The Boilermakers went 9-4 last year, and here I finished them 5-7 and they missed a game of boules. It might be too steep a drop, but the Boilermakers bring nearly all of their ‘coin flip’ games to the road, which adds to the difficulty of everything. With a few breaks, this team could finish 7-5, but even that would be just a push, and I just don’t see 8-4 happening with this schedule. The under is a solid bet. Choice: Less than 7 (-130)

Rutger

Over / under 4 wins

  • Wins: Wagner, Temple, Nebraska, Indiana
  • Losses: Boston College, Iowa, Ohio State, Minnesota, Michigan, Michigan State, Penn State, Maryland

Analyses: I’ve taken a pessimistic view with every other team I plan to increase the total winnings in 2022, so it’s time for some optimism. While I’m planning the Knights to finish 4-8, a 5-7 record seems more likely to me than 3-9 with this schedule. The Knights just won five games last season and they do a great job of being a pain in the ass against teams that don’t have significant talent advantages over them. While they are still likely to get beaten up by the top teams in the East, they will be feisty enough against everyone else that it wouldn’t be a shock if they pulled a flip out somewhere. Choice: More than 4 (-105)

Wisconsin

Over / under 9 wins

  • Wins: State of Illinois, State of Washington, State of New Mexico, Illinois, Northwestern, Purdue, Maryland, Nebraska, Minnesota
  • Losses: State of Ohio, State of Michigan, Iowa

Analyses: I’ve been waiting for the Wisconsin bout to take a step forward in its passing bout with Graham Mertz for the past two seasons, and it hasn’t come. I don’t count on that in 2022. Of course, that doesn’t mean the Badgers will fall apart. Handling the ball effectively and playing suffocating defense has worked well for Madison for a long time, and while that limits the program’s ability to win the conference, it can still win the West. Driving trips to the state of Ohio and the state of Michigan won’t be much fun, but the Badgers should be favorites in every other game outside of their Iowa trip. Choice: Less than 9 (-115)

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