Wisconsin Football: Best sports gambling bets against Iowa

MADISON, WI - SEPTEMBER 08: Madison Cone #31 of the Wisconsin Badgers reacts to a stop against the New Mexico Lobos during the first half at Camp Randall Stadium on September 8, 2018 in Madison, Wisconsin. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
MADISON, WI - SEPTEMBER 08: Madison Cone #31 of the Wisconsin Badgers reacts to a stop against the New Mexico Lobos during the first half at Camp Randall Stadium on September 8, 2018 in Madison, Wisconsin. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /

Every week we’ll analyze the lines and totals for Wisconsin Football, plus anything else that might be able to make you some money.

Last weekend’s game didn’t go as planned at all for Wisconsin football, or for my picks. I still managed a 1-1 weekend by taking the over but missed on Wisconsin covering. Wisconsin is now 0-3 against the spread, and I am 0-3 because I’ve picked Wisconsin to cover all three weeks.

Last week Wisconsin was favored by 21.5, which I thought was doable for the Badgers. I projected that they would put together a strong showing by dominating with Jonathan Taylor and shutting down anything BYU wanted to do on offense. I was so sorely mistaken.

Obviously, a loss by the favorite means they don’t cover. And I could tell early on in the game that it wasn’t going to be a high-scoring day for the Badgers. My only hope was the over, otherwise, I was facing 0-2 for the third straight weekend and considering retiring this weekly post.

I mentioned last week that BYU’s best shot to win at all was to keep the game close and I threw out the score of 24-21. Turns out that was the exact score, just not in favor of the Badgers. I also mentioned that that score would still hit the over, which is why I took it. It’s tough to feel brilliant after a 1-5 overall start to the season, but hitting the over does it for me.

Let’s get into next week’s game against Iowa and examine these lines.

Must Read. Three superlatives from week three vs. BYU. light

Please remember to always play responsibly. Do not wager any money you do not have and do not take anything I say here or in the future as fact. No bet is guaranteed. I do not personally gamble on sports, I only entertain the concept as an additional way to enjoy and discuss sports. I do not encourage gambling.

The Spread

Wisconsin opened at -6 over the Hawkeyes, but it’s been bet all the way down to -3.5. Tons of love has come in on the side of Iowa in this game. I think it’s more about distrust for Wisconsin though. The line moving away from the Badgers means more value is there for Wisconsin bettors. That’s a free 2.5 points that the public has given to that side.

More from Badger of Honor

As silly as it sounds, I have to ride with the Badgers against the spread. Especially with the added value from the line dropping. Instead of needing the Badgers by a touchdown, I’ll need four points. That saves Wisconsin a score, theoretically. If the Badgers are heading into the red zone with a  21-20 lead, a touchdown would be needed to cover, whereas now only a field goal is required. I like that added comfort.

Plus, Vegas isn’t trying to set this line in a way to have the Badgers going 0-4 against the spread. That would set a noticeable trend and bring in too much attention against the Badgers in following weeks. Vegas wants this to even out.

I project this line will continue to move down towards a pick ’em, thanks to the wagering public. The public’s perception of Wisconsin just isn’t good and it’ll only be reflected in the spread as the week goes on. If you can get the line at -3, that’s even better because it allows for a push. It also gives you the opportunity to buy the hook (extra half of a point) to get the spread down to only -2.5 for slightly less valuable odds.

This trend is favorable to those taking Wisconsin against the spread. I would recommend waiting it out as it has a few more days to drop down and further increase the value.

The Total

Over, over, over! The total is only 41.5 and that feels like a gimme. If you’re like me and think Wisconsin has a chance to get its offense figured out this weekend, that total could be obliterated. And if the offenses aren’t hitting on all cylinders, the total is so low it won’t matter.

If both teams get into the 20’s, it’s almost impossible to lose this wager. A 20-20 tie going into overtime guarantees a winner on the over, so only a 21-20 final score is a loser in that scenario.

I don’t see Wisconsin scoring less than 21 points this weekend. The only threat for this to go under is if Wisconsin’s offense is completely broken, or if Wisconsin’s defense totally shuts down the Hawkeyes. I don’t think Wisconsin’s offense is broken, and if the Badger D shows up big, the Badgers have a great shot at covering the spread for the first time this year as a security blanket.

The Play

Official play: Wisconsin -3.5, over 41.5 (wait on the line to drop even more)

Wisconsin’s offense is getting completely underrated after last week against BYU. It’s important to remember that was one of the worst offensive showings by the Badger offensive line in years. That’s not something that’s going to happen again. The public perception to the loss is a massive overreaction.

It’s going to be very difficult to go 0-2 with these picks. I know that’s not the goal, but it’s a nice safety net to have. If Iowa wins a game in the teens then the picks are 0-2. But I don’t see that happening.

Next. Ten best Wisconsin Football games since 2010. dark

A conservative prediction is Wisconsin to win 27-17, with a late touchdown to put the game away. Wisconsin covers, the over is comfortably met, and we got ourselves our first 2-0 week of the year. Just a little later than planned.