You might not know it, but the Northwestern Wildcats have quietly won 36 games over the past four seasons while reaching the double-digit win mark twice during the span. The Big Ten title hopefuls have also won three straight bowl games for the first time in program history and are now looking to take another step forward in their evolution under longtime head coach Pat Fitzgerald.
If you’re looking to find out just how many victories Northwestern will likely record this coming season in the hopes of cashing in big on their value-packed NCAAF win total odds in the sportsbook, then you’ve come to the right place.
Thanks to the expert collegiate gridiron analysis and predictions that you’re about to get, you’re going to have a great idea of just how many games the Big Ten title longshots are going to win in 2019 and whether they’ll challenge for the national championship. Now, let’s get busy.
Northwestern Wildcats 2019 Season Win / Loss Total Odds & Betting Prediction
2018 Team Leaders
- Touchdowns: Clayton Thorson (9)
- Rushing: Isaiah Bowser (866)
- Passing: Clayton Thorson (3183)
- Receiving: Flynn Nagel (780)
- Interceptions: JR Pace (4)
Why Will Top Their Win Total Odds?
To get right to the point, there are a bunch of good reasons to back Northwestern to top their modest win total odds of 6½ victories. First, as previously mentioned, the Wildcats are now a program that is used to winning. Northwestern went a respectable 9-5 last season after going 10-3 in 2017. The Cats have basically won seven games or more in each of the last four seasons, so reaching that figure again in 2019 doesn’t look like much of a stretch.
Another good reasons to back Northwestern is the fact that they should be better on offense than they were a year ago, and possibly as good as they’ve ever been under Fitzgerald. While the Wildcats no longer have four-year starter Clayton Thorson under center, they will be starting 2016 five-star recruit Hunter Johnson, a dual-threat quarterback signal-caller with a much bigger upside than Thorson.
Johnson has a sure-handed wide receiver in Ben Skowronek, who has racked up consecutive 45-catch seasons. More importantly, the Wildcats looks to have found a potential star in sophomore running back Isaiah Browser after he averaged a healthy 108.0 yards rushing over Northwestern’s final eight games after becoming the starter.
Then, there’s the fact that the Wildcats look like they’re going to be strong on defense again after limiting the opposition to 23.1 points per game a year ago (41st). All-Big Ten defensive end Joe Gaziano leads a solid defensive line while linebacker Paddy Fisher is expected to challenge for some national awards. The secondary is also in good shape with a nice mix of youth and experience.
Why Won’t Top Their Win Total Odds?
While Northwestern has a manageable win total figure, there are also some good reasons to back the ‘Cats to come up short of their win total figure. First, there are questions along the offensive line, not to mention the fact that Hunter Johnson is going to be a first-time starter and that usually means some struggles. The Wildcats also lost their top cover cornerback in Montre Hartage and they’ve gotten off to slow starts in each of the last two seasons. Last but certainly not least, the Wildcats have what looks like a fairly difficult schedule in front of them, which I’ll get to in just a second.
After opening on the road at Stanford, Northwestern has what looks like a winnable matchup at home again UNLV. Dates at home against Michigan State and at Wisconsin could both be losses waiting to happen. A road date at Nebraska also looks like a tough contest as the Cornhuskers get set for Year 2 of the Scott Frost era. Home dates against Ohio State and Iowa could also turn out to be defeats, but then Northwestern closes out the regular season with what looks like five consecutive ‘winnable’ matchups. In the end, I just can’t bring myself to play the Under here. I fully believe the Wildcats will find a way to reach seven victories in 2019 to finish Over their win total odds.
Pick: 5 Wins