Michigan football opens Big Ten play this week against Rutgers and here’s a look at the odds, how to watch, and a prediction.
Even though some Michigan football fans weren’t satisfied with the win last Saturday over Bowling Green, the Wolverines are 3-0.
Jim Harbaugh is also back this week as Rutgers comes to the Big House for the first Big Ten game of the 2023 season. Greg Schiano and the Scarlet Knights aren’t a team to take lightly.
Rutgers is 3-0 and they haven’t just beaten pushovers. The Scarlet Knights have bested Northwestern, Temple, and Virginia Tech and looked good doing it.
Kyle Monangai is one of the leading rushers in college football with 357 yards in three games. Rutgers actually leads the Big Ten in rushing yards coming into this matchup. Quarterback Gavin Wimsatt has also been playing mistake-free football (3 touchdowns, zero interceptions).
Rutgers is also allowing just 10 points per game. Michigan football fans will remember how the last two games were anything but easy. It was a one-score game in 2021 in Ann Arbor, plus the Scarlet Knights led at halftime in 2022, as well as the overtime win by U-M in 2020.
So nobody should be taking Schiano and the Scarlet Knights lightly. You know Michigan football certainly isn’t and here are the odds, how to watch, and a prediction.
Michigan football vs. Rutgers odds
The second-ranked Wolverines are a 24-point favorite according to DraftKings going into Saturday’s game against the Scarlet Knights. The over/under for Michigan and Rutgers is 44.5 and the money line is -2400 for the Wolverines as well as +1200 for Rutgers.
Michigan vs. Rutgers How to watch
Date: Sept. 23
Game Time: 12:00 PM EST
Venue: The Big House
How to Watch: Big Ten Network | Fubo TV
Michigan vs. Rutgers players to watch
All eyes will be on J.J. McCarthy on Saturday after his three-interception game against Bowling Green. Jim Harbaugh said he wants McCarthy to remain a “gunslinger” and that’s exactly the right approach. McCarthy is a playmaker. He had an off night but it’s no time to get conservative. I’m confident that he’ll bounce back and this team will be fired up for Harbaugh’s first game back.
Monangai has been a force through three weeks of the season and it’s allowed Rutgers to use a formula of running and defense to win. Wimsatt is completing 51 percent of his passes, so he’s not lighting the world on fire, but he’s not turning the ball over either. Mohamed Toure has 10 career sacks and one this season as well as two tackles for loss. Aaron Lewis, a former Michigan football signee, also has 12 stops and a sack.
Michigan vs. Rutgers prediction
This is a scary matchup in part because Rutgers plays Michigan tough. Schiano’s teams play solid defense and are always physical. They are just usually lacking talent.
Rutgers has improved though. The quarterback is a blue-chipper and the Scarlet Knights have the Big Ten’s leading rusher. However, I think Schiano is right when he says that Michigan football has the best defensive line in the country.
Michigan will contain Monangai and hold Rutgers to fewer than 100 yards rushing. That will put more of an onus on Wimsatt and he’s talented but not quite ready. He’ll throw his first interception and Michigan football will pull away late in a competitive game. I just don’t see Rutgers scoring much and their pass defense is susceptible.
Michigan 30, Rutgers 3.