The Big Ten Conference took awhile to get things going this season, but they have joined the college football party in 2020. In an effort to get some extra exposure due to the late start, the Big Ten Conference scheduled a number of Friday night games this season.
The Minnesota Golden Gophers will host the Purdue Boilermakers on Friday in what is always a fun rivalry game. Purdue comes into this game with a record of 2-1, while Minnesota is a very disappointing 1-3 so far this season.
Both teams hail from the West Division in the Big Ten Conference, which has traditionally been the weaker of the two. Purdue still has a chance to win that division, while Minnesota is just trying to climb out of the cellar.
The Purdue Boilermakers are 2.5-point favorites over the Minnesota Golden Gophers on Friday night.
Purdue Throwing the Football
Star wide receiver Rondale Moore has not even stepped on the field for Purdue this season, but that offense has still been putting up big numbers. The Boilermakers are averaging 305.3 passing yards per game, which is top-20 in the country.
Quarterback Aidan O’Connell has been terrific for Purdue this season, throwing for 916 yards and seven touchdowns. The Boilermeraks will need another dominant game from O’Connell because their rushing attack has been non-existent.
Purdue is averaging just 63.7 rushing yards per game, but Minnesota has given up some rushing yards this season. Look for the Boilermakers to get their run game rolling in this game.
The defense has yet to allow more than 27 points in any game this season, and that unit resembles a typical Big Ten defense. Purdue will look to shut down a struggling Gophers team early and often on Friday night.
Minnesota Defense a Disaster
The Minnesota offense has been up and down throughout the 2020 season, but the defense has been a disaster all season long. The Golden Gophers are allowing nearly 26 points per game, and that unit had no answer for the Iowa Hawkeyes in their most recent game.
The lack of defense has simply put too much pressure on the offense, and that unit has not been able to cover for them. Minnesota was “rowing the boat” on offense a season ago, but they appear to be treading water in 2020.
Minnesota is averaging more than 215 rushing yards per game, and they will look to get that part of their offense rolling. Running back Mohammed Ibrahim leads the team with 715 rushing yards and 10 touchdowns, but he needs some help from his teammates.
Quarterback Tanner Morgan has plenty of Big Ten experience, but the Golden Gophers are waiting for him to take off. Minnesota simply can’t rely on their defense to help much in this game.
Golden Gophers Boat Continues to Sink
Last season, Minnesota coined the phrase, “Row the Boat,” as the Golden Gophers were having a historic season. Minnesota was expected to be good again in 2020, but this has been a very rough start.
Purdue has been without its top wide receiver all season, but it has not slowed down this offense. The Boilermakers are facing one of the worst teams in the Big Ten in this game and that passing attack should have another big day.
Minnesota is searching for answers, but they are unable to keep the boat from sinking this season. Purdue will add to the issues for the Golden Gophers as they pick up an impressive road win on Friday night.
Bet the Purdue Boilermakers -2.5 over the Minnesota Golden Gophers in this rare Friday night game in the Big Ten.