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Indiana @ Iowa Prediction: Penix to lead IU to big road win

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By Neil Monnery

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Whilst a lot of attention will be paid to the Wisconsin/Penn State game in the BigTen, a huge game takes place straight afterwards over on BTN as #17 Indiana travel to Kinnick to face #18 Iowa.

The star attraction in this game is clearly Michael Penix Jr. The RS JR from Tampa flashed last season and showed himself on a national stage by leading his team back with a late rally to beat ranked Penn State. Sadly for him, he would tear his ACL in November and has slowly worked himself back into game shape and looks set to lead his team this weekend.

With 1,645 yards under his belt last season in the seven games he played, he actually led the conference in yards per game. He’s 10-2 as a starter for the team with a 61.6% completion percentage. This lefty has all the potential to be a very good collegiate QB.

Iowa Head Coach Kirk Ferentz has been talking up the off-season leap that RS JR Spencer Petras has made. Last season was a bit of a baptism of fire for the California kid as he went into the Covid shortened campaign with no spring ball under his belt.

His final two games however were clearly his best as he threw for five scores with no picks against Illinois and Wisconsin. What we did see last season however is he doesn’t push the ball down the field often as he cleared 250 yards through the air just once in eight games. That seems to indicate that Iowa will have to rely on the ground game.

Scoring has been up in the early games so far around College Football and I see a surprising amount of points in this one...

Spread:

Most pundits agree that home field advantage is worth three points and the line has been set at Iowa -3.5. I think most agree this just feels like a pick ‘em type of game. What I like about the visitors is I’ve seen Penix Jr. perform in big games. I like the way he carries himself and the fact he seems unfazed in big moments. For that reason I’m taking them to cover the 3.5.

Straight-up/Moneyline:

Not only am I taking them to cover. Give me a road upset baby!

Over/Under Points Totals:

The o/u line is set at 46.5 and this is one of the lowest around College Football this weekend. Makes no bones about it, the Sportsbooks think this will be an old school BigTen game where the ground game, field position and good defense comes out on top. I’m going against that train of thought and think this might be a surprisingly high scorer. I’ll take the over.

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