- Maryland hosts Minnesota in Big 10 action on Friday, October 30th
- Both teams are looking to bounce back from disappointing losses in Week 8
- See the game odds, spread and total along with predictions below
After both teams suffered tough losses in their seasons openers, Minnesota and Maryland will both be searching for their first wins of the season when the two teams clash in Week 9 at Capital One Field on Friday, October 30th (7:30 PM EST).
The Golden Gophers are listed as 20.5-point favorites after winning by 42 points in last year’s meeting. Minnesota actually opened as -18 favorites, but the line was quickly bet up by the public.
Which team is best set up to bounce back in Week 9? See the odds and betting pick in the story below.
Minnesota vs Maryland Week 9 Odds
|Minnesota||-20.5 (-106)||-1250||O 61.5 (-106)|
|Maryland||+20.5 (-114)||+710||U 61.5 (-114)|
Odds taken Oct. 27 from FanDuel
Golden Gophers Loaded on Offense
Minnesota will be looking to pick up its first win of the season against the Terrapins after falling 49-24 to Michigan in the season opener. We saw potential from this Golden Gophers offense, but it was the team’s inexperienced defense that cost them the chance at upsetting the Wolverines.
Senior QB Tanner Morgan had a tough outing against Michigan after throwing for an impressive 3,253 yards and 30 touchdowns with just seven interceptions last season. Part of his struggles can be traced to the team being without two starting offensive linemen in right guard Curtis Dunap Jr. and right tackle Daniel Faalele. It’s unclear if they’ll be available against Maryland.
This is a very talented offense that returns eight starters from last season. Junior running back Mohamed Ibrahim was a force against Michigan with 140 rushing yards and two scores, while Rashod Bateman was once again Morgan’s top target at receiver. They’re primed for a big bounce-back game against one of the worst defenses in the conference.
Terrapins Started in Brutal Fashion
It couldn’t have gone much worse for Maryland in their season opener against Northwestern. Young transfer quarterback Taulia Tagovailoa struggled mightily in his program debut, completing just 56% of his passes and throwing three picks in a 43-3 loss. Maryland’s run defense was also gashed for a whopping 325 yards by Northwestern’s rushing attack.
Maryland’s offensive line looks like it will be a real problem this season, as the team managed just 64 rushing yards and 143 yards passing against the Wildcats. Maryland was dominated in time of possession and couldn’t contain Northwestern QB Peyton Ramsey, who went off for 212 yards. Minnesota’s Morgan and Ibrahim could have a field day against this defense.
This is a very young Terrapins squad with more than 50 new players on the roster. The fact they they managed just a single field goal and only had 22:79 time of possession against a Wildcats team coming off a three-win season speaks volumes to where this program is at in its rebuild.
What’s the Best Bet?
Both teams are looking for bounce-back victories in this one, but there’s a clear mismatch in skill between the two teams. Minnesota’s defense didn’t look good against Michigan, but this is a well-coached unit under Joseph Rossi that will have a much easier time against Maryland than they did against a surprisingly explosive Wolverines attack.
— Minnesota Football (@GopherFootball) October 25, 2020
When these two teams played last season, Minnesota dominated in all aspects in a 52-10 victory. The Golden Gophers had a 42:53-17:07 advantage in time of possession and will control the clock once again on Friday. Morgan will have a better game, but it will be Ibrahim that takes control and dominates against this successible Maryland run defense.
It’s tough to bet on most Big Ten teams covering a 20-plus point spread on the road in a conference rivalry game, but keep in mind Minnesota was 4-1-0 away from TCF Bank Stadium last season and covered in three of those contests. The Golden Gophers are loaded on offense and dominated when these two teams met last year. A rebuilding Maryland program simply doesn’t have the weapons or experience to keep pace in this one.
Pick: Minnesota Golden Gophers -20.5 (-106)