Big Ten Championship 2021: Michigan vs. Iowa TV Info, Odds, Predictions

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistDecember 1, 2021

Michigan defensive end Aidan Hutchinson (97) rushes Ohio State quarterback C.J. Stroud (7) during the first half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Nov. 27, 2021, in Ann Arbor, Mich. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
Carlos Osorio/Associated Press

The Michigan Wolverines are favored to extend the Big Ten East's dominance in the Big Ten Championship Game. 

All of the conference title game winners have come from the Big Ten East since the league shifted to the East-West format in 2014. 

The Ohio State Buckeyes have five conference titles in that span. The Michigan State Spartans and Penn State Nittany Lions each have one championship.

Michigan has never played in the Big Ten Championship Game because it has been stuck behind the three other premier programs in its division.

The Iowa Hawkeyes are making their second appearance in Indianapolis. Saturday's performance could mirror the 13-point output from Kirk Ferentz's side in 2015. 

Iowa has struggled to produce a consistent offensive product at parts of the season, and it is up against a tough challenge versus Michigan's defense. 


Big Ten Championship Info

Date: Saturday, December 4

Start Time: 8 p.m. ET 

TV: Fox

Live Stream: FoxSports.com or Fox Sports app



via DraftKings Sportsbook

Spread: Michigan -10.5

Over/Under: 43.5 

Money Line: Michigan (-450; bet $450 to win $100); Iowa (+340; bet $100 to win $340)



Michigan 34, Iowa 10

MVP: Aidan Hutchinson, DE, Michigan

Four of the seven Big Ten Championship Games between the East and West champions were decided by 10 or more points. 

All four of those victories were earned by Ohio State and its tremendous pipeline of offensive talent. 

Michigan can extend that trend on Saturday but with a new wrinkle. The Wolverines defense could be the story in Indianapolis. 

Defensive end Aidan Hutchinson emerged as a potential Heisman Trophy candidate after the win over Ohio State. 

The lack of clear-cut Heisman favorites across the FBS right now opens the door for someone like Hutchinson to be voted as the award's winner. 

Hutchinson is the leader of a Michigan defense that allowed 17.2 points and 196.3 passing yards per game in the regular season.

Hutchinson, who has 13 sacks, could be a menace to the Iowa offensive line. Hawkeyes quarterbacks suffered 30 sacks this season. 

If Michigan wins the interior battle on defense, it could set the tone for offensive success in the trenches through running backs Hassan Haskins and Blake Corum. 

The Wolverines eclipsed the 30-point mark in each of their three games against Big Ten West opposition. They beat the Wisconsin Badgers and Northwestern Wildcats by double figures. Michigan won the rushing yards battle by a 610-283 margin in those three victories. 

Iowa struggled against some of the best teams on its schedule. The Hawkeyes only beat Penn State by three points and then lost consecutive games to the Purdue Boilermakers and Wisconsin. Iowa even stumbled a bit in a 17-12 win over Northwestern. 

Iowa has had one instance of a quarterback throwing for more than 200 yards since the October 9 win over Penn State. 

If the Hawkeyes fail to generate yards and first downs on the ground, they could struggle to keep up with Michigan through the air. 

Spencer Petras performed well in a relief role in the win over the Nebraska Cornhuskers, but he is facing a different animal in the Michigan pass rush. 

Petras was picked off four times and sacked on four occasions in the loss to Purdue. He failed to eclipse the 100-yard mark through the air while being sacked five times by Wisconsin.

If Michigan forces Iowa to beat it through the air, the Wolverines could be up by double figures by halftime. 

Iowa needs to play a perfect game to even keep the game close, but its performances in previous big games this season suggest that is not possible. 


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