Big Ten Championship Betting Preview: Can Hawkeyes Hang Around?

Tyler Goodson #15 of the Iowa Hawkeyes runs with the football in the first half against the Wisconsin Badgers at Camp Randall Stadium on November 09, 2019 in Madison, Wisconsin.
Image Credit: Quinn Harris/Getty Images

Michigan earned its way into Saturday’s Big Ten championship game with a surprisingly dominant victory over rival Ohio State last weekend. On the other hand, Iowa barely held on to win the weak West Division despite an anemic offense that struggled for much of the season. 

That lackluster Hawkeyes offense is the main reason why Michigan checks in as a double-digit favorite. It’s also why Iowa’s defense has to be flawless to have a shot at the upset. (Being on the right side of the turnover battle wouldn’t hurt either.)

Can the Hawkeyes keep this close and perhaps win a low-scoring affair? Or will Michigan ride its momentum to a blowout victory and secure a spot in the College Football Playoff? We’ll break it all down while looking at the current odds, action, trends, and sportsbook data in this Big Ten Championship Betting Preview.

Game Info

  • Date: Saturday, December 4
  • Time: 8 p.m. ET
  • Location: Lucas Oil Stadium/Indianapolis (neutral site)
  • TV: FOX
  • Weather: Dome

Best Odds

Sportsbook Spread Total
FanDuel Michigan -10.5 (-108) 43.5
DraftKings Michigan -10.5 (-115) 43.5
BetMGM Michigan -10.5 (-110) 43.5
Caesars Michigan -11 (-110) 43.5
FoxBET Michigan -10.5 (-110) 43.5

Odds updated as of 5:30 pm ET Dec. 3.

Betting Action Report: Money On Michigan

Michigan Wolverines running back Hassan Haskins (25) his celebrates touchdown with tight end Luke Schoonmaker (86) and tight end Carter Selzer (89) in the first half against the Indiana Hoosiers at Michigan Stadium.
Image Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

UPDATE 3:30 P.M. ET WEDNESDAY: The CFP rankings updated Tuesday night, and Michigan jumped from No. 5 and out of the playoff to No. 2 and in. So the Wolverines’ big 42-27 home win over Ohio State clearly carried a lot of weight with the committee. Save for juice adjustments, Michigan has stuck at -10.5 all week at DraftKings, while seeing a relatively modest majority of action: 59% of bets and 60% of money. The total dipped from 44 to 43.5 Sunday and stuck there, although ticket count is 2/1 and money 3/1 on the Over.

Editor’s Note: Check out Patrick Everson’s College Football Week 14 Action Report with betting insights on Oklahoma State-Baylor, Georgia-Alabama, and more.

BetPrep Betting Trends

Michigan Key Trends

  • The Wolverines enter the Big Ten title game on a four-game ATS winning streak, and they’re 10-2 ATS for the season.
  • Michigan is 5-1 ATS in its last six games as a favorite.
  • The Over is 39-19 in the Wolverines’ last 58 conference games.

Iowa Key Trends

  • The Hawkeyes are 5-1-1 ATS in their last seven games as an underdog.
  • Iowa is 11-4 ATS in its last 15 games coming off a win.
  • The Under is 4-1 in the Hawkeyes’ last five games as an underdog.

Historical Trends

Michigan and Iowa are both seeking their first-ever Big Ten Championship Game victory. The Wolverines are appearing in this contest for the first time in program history, while the Hawkeyes are making their second appearance after falling to Michigan State in 2015.

Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz is 7-6 against Michigan in his career. The only school to have played the Wolverines at least five times over that span and have a better record is, of course, Ohio State at 16-5.

The Underdog is 9-4 ATS in the last 13 meetings between these two teams, while the Under is 4-1 in the last five meetings overall.

Final Thoughts

Here’s what’s Matt Perrault had to say about this game on the Prop City Podcast:

“Michigan being a double-digit favorite over anyone is insane. I don’t like Iowa. I have been wrong on Iowa a ton. But this number, with Iowa’s defense, is way too high in my mind. You could get that huge emotional letdown after [Michigan] beat Ohio State last week.”

Wagering on the Wolverines? You can find the best number/price of Michigan -10.5 (-110) at FanDuel Sportsbook.

Taking the points with Iowa? Caesars Sportsbook and PointsBet are friends to Hawkeye backers, listing Iowa +11 (-110).

Big Bet Alert: Earlier in the week, BetMGM took a $175,000 bet on Michigan -10.5. The bettor would net $150,000 if the Wolverines cover.