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Minnesota Football vs. Northwestern: Game central, quick preview & prediction

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Bowl eligibility, who wants some bowl eligibility?

Opening thoughts

Minnesota played well against Nebraska and now I’m not sure what to do with my hands.

Will we get that kind of performance again? Will we go back to poor execution? Is Northwestern actually any good? I have no idea, so I’m just going to enjoy my time in Chicago with friends and let everything else play itself out.

Gnome #TAKES

Winter Goldy Hat Gnome

Winter Hat Gnome would love to see Northwestern fall on their face as badly as the obsolete vernacular in their namesake novel by Eli Cash.*

*if you can get this reference without Googling then we should be friends

When & Where

Date: Saturday, November 18th

Kickoff Time: 11:00 am CT

Where: Ryan Field, Evanston, IL

Watch & Listen

TV: Fox Sports 1

Streaming Video: Big Ten Network (or the BTN2Go app for your mobile device)

Radio: KFAN (100.3 in the Twin Cities) and the Gopher Radio Network (Radio Affiliates).

Streaming Audio: Locate KFAN on IHeartRadio (or the IHeartRadio app for your mobile device)

Satellite Radio:

  • Sirius: 134 (Internet 967)
  • XM: 195 (Internet 967)
  • SiriusXM: 195 (Internet 967)
  • NOTE: The Sirius/XM website has also started listening what “internet” channel the games are on this year if you choose to listen online vs through a receiver.

Odds

Spread: Northwestern by 7 to 7.5.

O/U: 41

Weather Forecast

Low 40’s, possible rain, and no I am not a water demon.

The Enemy

Where Are They From? Evanston, IL

All Time Series: The Gophers have a commanding lead the all time series vs. Northwestern: 53-34-5.

Last Game: Gophers won 29-12 last season in Minneapolis.

SB Nation Blog: Inside NU

This Season: 7-3 (5-2 B1G)

Keys to the game

  • Efficient passing. Another good Demry Croft performance would go a long way to getting Minnesota a win. Northwestern has a legit run defense and expecting the Gophers to run for 409 yards with limited passing is probably foolish. However, if Demry and the receivers can make the Wildcats pay through the air that should open things up for the running backs and read option looks.
  • Don’t be one-sided on defense. Northwestern hasn’t been exception at either running or passing the ball, but they have had each half of the offense show they can carry the team when the other part of the O is struggling. The Gophers will need to be consistent across the board to give them the best chance to win.
  • QB pressure. The defense has been at it’s best when Blake Cashman and the defense get to the quarterback consistently. Think back to last fall and you’ll see that Northwestern often struggles when Clayton Thorson is under pressure. Make him struggle please.

How afraid am I?

On a scale of 1 to 5 "Brewsters on his face" (1 being not a afraid, 5 being very afraid)?

I’m moderately concerned about this game in my head, so I’m going with 3 Nerd Brewsters afraid of Northwestern.

Prediction

In my heart though, I’m not ready to give up my good feelings from Nebraska. This led me to make a bold decision in the podcast last night and I’ll repeat the full homer prediction here.

Minnesota, 49- Northwestern 13

Back to back boat races. I have no rational reason to predict this and I’m quite sure it won’t happen but I’m here for it anyway. EDIT: I cannot stress enough how illogical and terrible this prediction is (which won’t stop me from crowing about it if by some miracle I’m proven right).