2015 Big Ten Football Betting Preview
After defying the oddsmakers by routing the Wisconsin Badgers 59-0 as 4-point betting underdogs to win the 2014 Big Ten Conference Championship, the Ohio State Buckeyes have emerged as opening -150 favorites at 5Dimes to repeat as Big Ten champs in college football futures betting.
The Buckeyes opened the 2014 campaign well back of the Badgers on the betting odds menu, lagging at 11/4 in Big Ten futures wagering, and endured a season of adversity.
Injuries ended the season of quarterbacks Braxton Miller and JT Barrett, but a strong ground game powered OSU to the nation’s fifth-best point production, while red-shirt sophomore QB Cardale Jones unexpectedly led the Buckeyes to their Big Ten title win followed by upset victories over the Alabama Crimson Tide and Oregon Ducks to win the inaugural College Football Playoff.
The Buckeyes are trailed in early Big Ten futures betting by the Michigan State Spartans, with odds of +300 at 5Dimes. The Spartans finished 2014 with an impressive 7-1 record against Big Ten rivals, with their only defeat coming against the Buckeyes, a stunning 49-37 loss as four-point home favorites.
Wisconsin is next on the Big Ten futures betting odds menu, pegged at +800. It was a disappointing season for the Badgers in 2014, who opened the season as strong 2/1 favorites to win the Big Ten and looked poised to crack the Top 10 in the national rankings before falling to the Buckeyes in the Conference Championship game.
The Nebraska Cornhuskers struggled throughout the second half of the 2014 college football season, posting SU losses in three of their last four while going 2-3-1 ATS in their last six, and open with +1100 odds at 5Dimes to claim the 2015 Big Ten title.
The Minnesota Golden Gophers also faded down the stretch last season, posting SU losses in four of their last six, but were a solid 7-3 ATS in their last 10, and are a +1200 dark horse bet to emerge as 2015 Big Ten champs.
The Michigan Wolverines round out the front of the pack with +1300 odds, followed by the Penn State Nittany Lions at +1700, Iowa Hawkeyes at +2200, Rutgers Scarlet Knights at +2500, and Maryland Terrapins at +3000.
The Northwestern Wildcats open with distant odds of +5500 at 5Dimes, followed by the Indiana Hoosiers and Illinois Fighting Illini at +6000, while the Purdue Boilermakers are conference longshots, sporting odds of +8000.
2015 Odds to Win the Big Ten Championship at 5Dimes as of February 13:
Ohio State -150
Michigan State +300
Penn State +1700
Ohio State and Michigan State both went undefeated in Big Ten conference play last season, with the Spartans topping the Buckeyes 34-24 in the Big Ten Championship Game. Ohio State, though, had the edge on the odds to win the Big Ten championship this offseason - until quarterback Braxton Miller got injured.
With Miller reportedly out for the season with a shoulder injury the Bovada Big Ten odds have the Buckeyes now listed at 11/4, with Wisconsin the new 2/1 favorite and Michigan State just behind them at 9/4 on those college football futures.
Ohio State topped the Leaders Division last season with an 8-0 record, while Michigan State ended up atop the Legends Division with an 8-0 record. The Badgers went 6-2 in Big Ten play last season, ending up two games behind Ohio State in the Leaders Division.
Nebraska is then at 15/2 on the odds to win the Big Ten championship at Bovada, with Iowa and Michigan at 10/1. Northwestern sits at 33/1, with Maryland at 50/1, Minnesota at 75/1, Indiana at 100/1, Illinois at 150/1, and Rutgers and Purdue at 300/1. The Boilermakers didn't have any success at all in Big Ten play last season, losing all eight of their conference matchups.
2014 Odds to Win the Big Ten Championship at Bovada as of August 20:
Michigan State 9/4
Ohio State 11/4
2014 Odds to Win the Big Ten East at Bovada as of August 20:
Michigan State 1/1
Ohio State 5/4
2014 Odds to Win the Big Ten West at Bovada as of August 20:
The best team in the Big Ten last season was not eligible for the conference championship game, but that is not the case in 2013. The Ohio State Buckeyes will look to pick up where they left off after their 12-0 run in their quest for a national title.
Ohio State (Odds to win BCS Championship at Bovada 7/1)
The Buckeyes went a perfect 12-0 straight-up last season but they were just 7-5 against the spread. They did cover in their final four games. Ohio State comes in this season as the clear favorite to win the Big Ten and a third-favorite to win the BCS title.
Michigan (Odds to win BCS Championship at Bovada 33/1)
The Wolverines will look to improve upon an 8-5 SU record last season that included a 6-2 SU run through the conference. They went 6-7 ATS overall and 2-4 ATS on the road. The total went OVER in four of their last five games.
Nebraska (Odds to win BCS Championship at Bovada 50/1)
In their second season in the Big Ten, the Cornhuskers made their presence felt by winning the Legends Division at 7-1 SU. They were 10-4 SU overall but just 6-7-1 ATS.
Wisconsin (Odds to win BCS Championship at Bovada 75/1)
The Badgers were 8-6 SU (6-8 ATS) last season and 5-4 SU in conference play. They went 2-4 SU and ATS down the stretch including a 20-14 loss to Stanford in the Rose Bowl as 4-point underdogs.
Michigan State (Odds to win BCS Championship at Bovada 100/1)
The best bet on the Spartans (7-6 SU) last season was on the total line with 10 of 13 games staying UNDER the total. They went 5-8 ATS overall and 1-7 ATS at home.
Northwestern (Odds to win BCS Championship at Bovada 150/1)
The Wildcats could be the team to watch in the Big Ten this season after going 10-3 SU and an extremely profitable 12-1 ATS in 2012.
Iowa (Odds to win BCS Championship at Bovada 500/1)
The Hawkeyes won just two games SU in the Big Ten last season on their way to an overall record of 4-8 SU and ATS.
Illinois (Odds to win BCS Championship at Bovada OFF)
This had to be the most disappointing team in the Big Ten last season with zero victories in conference play and a 2-10 SU (3-9 ATS) record overall.
Indiana (Odds to win BCS Championship at Bovada OFF)
The Hoosiers went 4-8 SU and 6-6 ATS but they were a solid play on the total line with eight of 11 games going OVER the total.
Minnesota (Odds to win BCS Championship at Bovada OFF)
The Golden Gophers stumbled to a 2-6 SU record in the Big Ten and they went 6-7 SU and ATS overall. They failed to cover in six of their last nine games.
Penn State (Odds to win BCS Championship at Bovada OFF)
Despite all the off-field issues the Nittany Lions turned in a solid 6-2 SU mark in conference play and an 8-4 SU record overall. They were a profitable 9-2-1 ATS that included a 4-0-1 ATS record on the road.
Purdue (Odds to win BCS Championship at Bovada OFF)
The Boilermakers were 6-7 both SU and ATS last season with the total going OVER in eight of 12 games.