Saturday, November 14, 2020, Michigan Stadium, Ann Arbor, Michigan, 7:30 p.m. ET
Badgers at Wolverines Betting Preview: Badgers (-1.5), Wolverines (+1.5)
Wisconsin Badgers Betting Preview
With games being canceled or postponed across the country because of coronavirus concerns, perhaps the best news of the weekend was that it looked good for Wisconsin’s game against Michigan to be played.
“We feel confident that we have a handle on the situation and are excited to play this week at Michigan,” athletics director Barry Alvarez said. “As we have done throughout, we will continue to monitor our testing results and base our decision on those results.”
After opening the season with a 45-7 win over Illinois on October 23, the No. 13 Badgers (1-0, 1-0 Big Ten) had games against Nebraska and Purdue canceled because of the coronavirus situation.
Getting the game in against Michigan is critical for the Badgers in their title bid. The Big Ten has ruled a team must play a minimum of six games to be eligible to play in the conference championship game. Wisconsin must play all of its remaining games to qualify.
The status of redshirt freshman quarterback Graham Mertz, who tested positive on October 24, is unclear. Coach Paul Chryst, who tested positive on the same day, said the Badgers will measure the progress of Mertz, who was 20 of 31 passing for 248 yards and five touchdowns against the Illini, this week.
“I think he’ll be able to have some practice. We’ll see if it’s enough practice time,” Chryst said. “You don’t know. Each guy’s a little bit different how they handle all of it. We’ll kind of see on him and a couple of other guys that were kind of in that early group of (positive tests).”
Tight end Jake Ferguson was Mertz’s preferred target. He caught a team-high seven passes for 72 yards and three touchdowns. The defense held Illinois to 218 total yards and eight first downs.
Michigan Wolverines Betting Preview
Falling out of the Top 24 for the first time since the end of the 2017 after losses to Michigan State and Indiana after the opening win over Minnesota, the Wolverines (1-2, 1-2 Big Ten) now must deal with questions about coach Jim Harbaugh and if he will leave Ann Arbor for an NFL job.
“No matter what I tell you, tomorrow something else will be written by somebody else,” Harbaugh said. “I’m going to let my actions speak loudly and, hopefully, you know me, my actions have been consistent.”
Harbaugh could be looking to give some younger players exposure going forward.
“Everybody has been here for at least three to four months, practicing football,” Harbaugh said. “Now there’s an opportunity to play — and guys are ready. We’ve talked about it before. You put them out there and let ’em play. That’s what they came here for. We recruited all of them.”
One bright spot has been the play of quarterback Joe Milton
He has topped the 300-yard mark passing in the last two games after throwing for 229 in the opening 49-24 win over Minnesota.
Badgers at Wolverines Betting Pick for November 14, 2020
The Badgers have won four of the last six meetings with the Wolverines but will be seeking back-to-back wins in the series for just the fourth time. They haven’t won at Michigan since 2010, losing 14-7 in 2016 and 38-13 in 2018. The Badgers won 35-14 at home last year.
Badgers at Wolverine Betting Pick:
Badgers 24, Wolverines 17
Badgers at Wolverines Best Bet for November 14, 2020
The Wolverines have scored just 45 points total in their last two games after beating Minnesota 49-24 in their opener. The Badgers are playing their first game since opening on October 23 with a 45-7 romp past Illinois.
Badgers at Wolverines Best Bet: UNDER 51.5