Northwestern has been undervalued and underestimated by Las Vegas and opposing fans for years, and despite winning the Big Ten West, it doesn’t look like that’s going to change.
The over/under win total for the ‘Cats has been set at 6.5 at multiple sportsbooks as prop bets come out for the 2019 College Football season. Some prominent books like Caesars Palace have the Wildcats total as low as 6.
For reference, Northwestern’s 2017 over/under win total was set at 7, and its 2018 total at 6. In the eyes of the bookies, NU’s expectations do not change much from year-to-year. As we all know, the Wildcats covered both of their past two win totals easily.
In 2017, the ‘Cats won their last eight games to cap off a nine win season, including a thrilling Music City Bowl victory that was played without Clayton Thorson for a large portion of the game.
And you all remember the epic 2018 season, right? After posting a 1-3 start and blowing a double-digit lead to Akron, Northwestern rattled off a stellar Big Ten campaign that earned the team its first Big Ten West title. It was another nine win season for the ‘Cats, highlighted by a division-clinching win in Iowa.
Will NU finish over or under 6.5 wins in 2019?
There are about three free wins for NU on the schedule this year in my eyes. UNLV, UMass and Illinois should be victories. But as we all know, it never seems to be that simple with this team.
Beyond that, the team’s schedule is tough. Northwestern will face Stanford, Wisconsin and Nebraska on the road, and will host Ohio State, Michigan State and Iowa.
We’ll get into season predictions more later in the summer, but I know many of you (including me) will scoff at the 6.5 number that Vegas set for NU. But hey, we know Fitz’s team performs best as an underdog. Northwestern was 0-4-1 last year against the spread as a favorite, but an astounding 7-1-1 as an underdog.
For now, we’re only 52 days until NU will be squaring off with the Cardinal in Palo Alto. Bring on football season.