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How and what to watch for No. 13 Wisconsin vs. Michigan

After a long wait, the No. 13 Wisconsin Badgers return to the football field to take on the struggling Michigan Wolverines on Saturday.

Wisconsin Badgers running back Garrett Groshek rushes with the football against Illinois Fighting Illini defensive back Sydney Brown during the fourth quarter at Camp Randall Stadium.  Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

After a long wait, the No. 13 Wisconsin Badgers return to the football field to take on the struggling Michigan Wolverines on Saturday.

After a season-opening pummeling of Illinois, Wisconsin spent the next three weeks sidelined while dealing with a COVID-19 outbreak. Graham Mertz, who delivered an essentially perfect debut as a starting quarterback, tested positive among numerous other Badgers, forcing the program to miss games. Mertz has now passed the 21-day waiting period and can return, but head coach Paul Chryst did not commit to playing him due to practice limitations.

Meanwhile, Michigan faces yet another wave of national skepticism over head coach Jim Harbaugh. The Wolverines find themselves at 1-2 following back-to-back distressing losses, first against Michigan State and then Indiana. Worse still, Michigan seems as far away from defeating arch-rival Ohio State as it ever has during the Harbaugh era. A loss to Wisconsin wouldn’t do much additional damage to Harbaugh’s job security, but a win could buy him back some credibility with the fan base and boosters.

Game Time/TV Channel/Streaming

You can watch Wisconsin vs. Michigan on Saturday, Nov. 14 at 7:30 p.m. ET on ABC, which is online also at ABC.com, where you can stream it with a cable or streaming service login.

Point Spread, Totals, Odds, Trends

Point spread: Wisconsin (-6) vs. Michigan
Point Total: 52.5
Money line: Wisconsin -235, Michigan +180

  • Against the spread, Wisconsin has a 17-8-0 record as the road team and a 14-5-0 record as a road favorite since the start of the 2015 season.
  • Over the same period, the Badgers have hit the over 12 times in 25 opportunities as a road team and done so 10 out of 19 times as a road favorite.
  • Since the start of 2015, Michigan has gone 19-17-0 against the spread at home and 1-2-0 as a home underdog.
  • Also over that span, the Wolverines have hit the over 22 times in 36 opportunities at home with one push and done so three out of three tries as the home underdog.

Betting splits

Wisconsin -6: (77% of handle, 69% percent of bets)
Michigan +6: (23% of handle, 31% percent of bets)

The Best Bet

While Mertz only has one collegiate start under his belt, he looks every bit the can’t-miss recruit Wisconsin expected a year ago. Michigan, following back-to-back losses, will have a difficult time preventing a third. Given the reasonably close point spread, bet on the Badgers’ upside.

Pick: Wisconsin -6

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