A couple of rivals in West Division of the Big Ten Conference lock up in their season opener in the Hoosier State. The Northwestern Wildcats are on the road as they take the trip to face the Purdue Boilermakers Thursday night. Northwestern finished the 2017 season 10-3 and closed the year with a 24-23 win over Kentucky in the Music City Bowl. Purdue went 7-6 in the first year under Jeff Brohm and won the Foster Farms Bowl 38-35 over Arizona. The Boilermakers lead the all-time series 50-31-1 but the Wildcats have won four straight matchups, including a 23-13 home win in the last matchup on November 11, 2017.
- Over is 4-0-1 in Wildcats last 5 road games.
- Wildcats are 5-0 ATS in their last 5 Thursday games.
- Wildcats are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 road games.
- Under is 6-1 in Boilermakers last 7 conference games.
- Boilermakers are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games overall.
- Boilermakers are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 home games.
Head to Head
- Road team is 5-1 ATS in their last 6 meetings.
- Wildcats are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 meetings in Purdue.
- Under is 10-3 in the last 13 meetings.
My first CFB spread pick of the 2018 season goes to the Boilermakers in this Big 10 matchup. Purdue was a surprise breakout in its first year under Jeff Brohm, ending with an impressive bowl win over Arizona. The Boilermakers have most of their key players back and should be even more explosive on offense. Northwestern is in rebuilding mode of sorts, as it loses most key contributors led by record-setting RB Justin Jackson. Veteran QB Clayton Thorson is questionable with an injury. Purdue in a blowout.
Prediction: PURDUE -3.5