Purdue vs Michigan Odds & Picks | Your Big Ten Championship Betting Guide
Michael Hickey/Getty Images. Pictured: Braiden McGregor of the Michigan Wolverines.
Purdue vs Michigan Odds
-115o / -105u
-115o / -105u
The summer takeaway from Big Ten Media Days centered around 12 teams orbiting Ohio State and Michigan.
The Buckeyes were heavy preseason favorites to win the conference, with Michigan at +350 and a dozen other teams at 20-1 or higher. Oddsmakers were flush with Ohio State money — investments that would never be seen again after Michigan's second-half domination of the Buckeyes.
Head coach Jim Harbaugh had the college football world convinced Michigan entered "The Game" without a passing attack. This perception made Ohio State send an aggressive blitz to stop the rush, playing into the Wolverines' heavy play-action game plan.
The early deep shots by Michigan opened the running lanes in the second half, showing everyone that the Wolverines are a legitimate national title contender.
In the tightest of division races, Purdue needed to win its final three games and get plenty of help to make the conference championship. The Boilermakers pulled off the feat under sixth-year head coach Jeff Brohm.
Despite losing a top defensive coordinator in the offseason, Purdue finished the season with a third-down stop unit ranked in the top 20. Now, Brohm must overtake a Michigan team that's sandwiched between a win over its biggest rival and a potential College Football Playoff spot.
Prayers are in line for the family of starting quarterback Aidan O'Connell, who was visibly upset in a 290-yard passing effort against Indiana. The senior will be away from the team for the bulk of the week, limiting preparations for the Big Ten Championship.
O'Connell has regressed from an explosive 2021 campaign, throwing fewer touchdowns and the most turnover-worthy plays of his career. It's not all O'Connell's fault, though, as the Boilermakers have dropped nearly double the number of passes versus from last season.
One bright spot has been Iowa transfer wide receiver Charlie Jones, who has hauled in the third-most receptions in the country to go along with 12 touchdowns.
— Big Ten Network (@BigTenNetwork) November 26, 2022
Brohm prefers a heavy dose of pass, going to the air on 56% of snaps this season. Thanks to Jones, the efficiency shines brightest in early downs passing, as the Boilers rank 31st nationally in Standard Downs Success Rate.
More importantly, this Purdue offense is one of the best in the nation in ball protection. Its national rank of sixth in Havoc Allowed is driven by the best numbers in tackles for loss allowed and fumbles.
Defensive coordinator Brad Lambert's successful tenure in West Lafayette came to an end with his move to Wake Forest. The play-calling duties moved to co-coordinator Ron English, who had not called a defense since 2016 at San Jose State.
The 4-2-5 scheme has been competent in the wake of losing key talent on the defensive line. The Boilermakers' ranks in Success Rate and tackling haven't tailed off, but they have fallen to mid-FBS in Havoc after a dominant 2021.
The injuries piled up for Michigan before traveling to Ohio State.
Star running back Blake Corum nursed a heavily-wrapped knee, logging just two carries against the Buckeyes. He's now expected to have knee surgery and miss the rest of the season.
Edge rusher Mike Morris has seven sacks on the season but was limited to a single snap in Week 13 because of an injury. Preseason Heisman sleeper Donovan Edwards was also wrapped heavily after recording two touches against Nebraska and no snaps against Illinois.
The Wolverines' late Week 12 victory over the Fighting Illini was pivotal for the win over Ohio State, as Harbaugh populated game film with 40 rushing attempts and a weak 7.5 average depth of target for JJ McCarthy passing attempts.
Michigan played possum with its air explosiveness in the near loss to Illinois to hide its game plan against Ohio State. The master plan worked, as McCarthy hit explosives to Cornelius Johnson in the air to open up the ground game for Edwards.
CORNELIUS JOHNSON DOES IT AGAIN OMG
— PFF College (@PFF_College) November 26, 2022
Michigan's defense also changed up its game plan. It blitzed less than usual with minimal rushers in order to defend the pass. Cornerbacks Rod Moore and Mike Sainristil both recorded a pair of pass breakups.
The defensive line recorded only a single sack with just nine pressures in 50 snaps, a testament to how tight Michigan covered targets downfield.
— Michigan Football (@UMichFootball) November 27, 2022
Purdue vs Michigan Matchup Analysis
Toggle the dropdowns below to hide or show how Purdue and Michigan match up statistically:
Purdue Offense vs Michigan Defense
|** Pass Blocking (Off) vs Pass Rush (Def)|
Michigan Offense vs Purdue Defense
|** Pass Blocking (Off) vs Pass Rush (Def)|
Pace of Play / Other
|SP+ Special Teams||121||10|
|Seconds per Play||25.9 (50)||29.6 (120)|
|Rush Rate||44.3% (118)||62.1% (12)|
Data via CollegeFootballData.com (CFBD), FootballOutsiders, SP+, Pro Football Focus and SportSource Analytics
Purdue vs Michigan Betting Pick
Harbaugh and Brohm have not locked up head-to-head since Brohm's inaugural season in 2017.
Dubbed "The Spoilermakers," Purdue won outright over top-25 competition in Illinois and Minnesota this season. Brohm won both of his previous conference championship games while at Western Kentucky.
Harbaugh knows Purdue is a dangerous team playing with house money, but the Wolverines were in a similar spot just a season ago after they beat the Buckeyes. They went on to blow out Iowa, 42-3, forcing seven of the Hawkeyes' eight possessions to end in a punt after their first-quarter field goal.
This Michigan team has been dominant in the second half of games, outscoring opponents by a net of 116 points over the past six contests. More than half of the Wolverines' opponents have failed to score a touchdown in the second half.
Harbaugh has high praise for co-offensive coordinator Sherrone Moore and defensive coordinator Jesse Minter for their in-game adjustments. If the Wolverines are in a tight battle with ownership of the "Middle 8," its certainly worth a live investment on Michigan.
The market was hit early in favor of Michigan, pushing an early point spread of -14.5 to -17. Purdue will see support at +17.5 or higher, with plenty of tickets written on Michigan at -16.5.
Brohm acknowledged that Purdue must do everything to eliminate the explosive plays, indicating that the Cover 0 and heavy blitz Ohio State played will not be in the cards for the Boilermakers.
Purdue has been a top-35 team against rush explosives, but the defense has struggled to stop the deep pass. Maryland was the most dynamic offense on the Boilermakers' schedule, and Purdue allowed four different receivers to log downfield catches that led to scoring drives.
In last year's Big Ten Championship, only 17 points were on the board at halftime. The Wolverines are not the only team that operates after the half, as Purdue has scored more in the second half during three of its past four games.
Look for explosives and points to come after the scripted series come to an end. Expect each team to make adjustments depending on the opposing defense's coverage.
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