The ‘Cats are under the lights in Bloomington this Saturday as they take on a surging 6-2 Indiana Hoosier squad. If the Wildcats are to have any chance of pushing for a fifth-consecutive bowl appearance, a win at Memorial Stadium is a must. Here’s what our staff sees happening tonight:
Noah Coffman: Indiana 27, Northwestern 12
Indiana is just much better than Northwestern. That’s all there is to it. The Hoosiers have a dominant offense regardless of who is at the helm, and a defense good enough (despite some misleading counting stats) to neutralize a Wildcat offense that has had limited effectiveness regardless of who they have faced in Big Ten play.
At some point, NU is going to break through. Just not this week.
Joe Weinberg: Indiana 24, Northwestern 20
‘Tis not the season.
Colin Kruse: Indiana 21, Northwestern 6
Northwestern’s defense will play well again, but, no matter who starts at quarterback for the Hoosiers, whether it be Michael Penix, Jr. or Peyton Ramsey, Mick McCall’s offense will struggle to move the ball down the field enough that Indiana’s offensive production will be enough, however limited.
A fatigued defense will give it their all, but unless they can significantly shorten the field for the offense (through turnovers), the ‘Cats will fall to 1-7. On the bright side, my record this season will become bowl eligible at 6-2. Redbox Bowl here I come!
Avery Zimmerman: Indiana 21, Northwestern 10
Matthew Albert: Northwestern 24, Indiana 10
Hashtag Go ‘Cats. Sorry #9WINdiana.
Jacob Brown: Indiana 17, Northwestern 3
Regardless of who is at QB for either team, I see Indiana’s offense controlling the pace of the game and NU struggling to move the ball as the Wildcats lose their sixth in a row.
Daniel Olinger: Indiana 28, Northwestern 6
Indiana has hung at least 31 points on every single defense they’ve faced this year save for that of Ohio State’s (and let’s face it, their defense can’t really be thought of in, um, ... human terms). I know Northwestern’s defense is still very stout, but it’s not an elite unit that can completely shut down good offenses.
And until the ‘Cats show any progress on the offensive side of the ball, I can’t pick them to win against any team left on their schedule except UMass.
William Karmin: Northwestern 20, Indiana 17
Indiana has been far better than Northwestern this season. Additionally, the Hoosiers still have plenty to play for.
That is why I’m picking Northwestern. Indiana has never been in this spot before. With the game being played at night and on FS1, Indiana will be hyped up and Memorial Stadium will be buzzing. To quote Fitz, Indiana will “squeeze the bat too hard” and play too emotionally. In Fitzgerald’s tenure, he has prided his teams on being road warriors. Saturday will be no different, as Northwestern will be the spoilers for #9WINdiana.
Mac Stone: Indiana 20, Northwestern 13
Hunter Johnson may be back, but the offense certainly won't be. Northwestern scores 13 to put up a bit of a fight, but Indiana settles in and finishes the fight on an early fourth quarter touchdown. Hoosiers by seven.
Ryley Hougland: Northwestern 14, Indiana 10
Yes, I’m a major homer. But I also see an Indiana team that’s given up 30 PPG against Big 10 opponents and relies heavily on a passing game that NU should be able to match up well against. NU is better than they’ve been showing, and they’re bound to prove that eventually.
Eli Karp: Northwestern 19, Indiana 16
My move to make a jump in the standings didn’t work last week. Alas, I try again. I suspect we may see some kind of Hunter action, and I agree with Will that Indiana may come out too fired up.
2019 Inside NU Prediction Standings:
Joe Weinberg: 6-1
Noah Coffman: 5-2
Avery Zimmerman: 5-2
Colin Kruse: 5-2
William Karmin: 5-2
Lia Assimakopoulos: 4-3
Eli Karp: 3-4
Matt Albert: 2-4
Jacob Brown: 3-1
Daniel Olinger: 2-0
Mac Stone: 2-0
Caleb Friedman: 1-0
Lucio Vainesman: 1-0
Claire Kuwana: 1-0
Ryley Hougland: 1-1
Graham Brennan: 0-1