2017 Football Preview – Big Ten – Wildcats
Looking for 2017 Northwestern Wildcats predictions? The Wildcats are definitely one of those teams you want to root for. It is going to be hard for them to compete regularly with the likes of Ohio State, Michigan and Wisconsin in the Big Ten they mirror their coach and maximize their. They are winners and not as boring as you think they are.
NCAA Football Gambling Lines
- 2017-18 College Football Preview – Northwestern Wildcats
Head Coach: Pat Fitzgerald
2015 Record: 7-6
Northwestern Wildcats Odds to win the 2017 FBS Championship: +30000
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This is a really solid team which could get to double digit victories this season.
2017 Northwestern Wildcats Predictions: Team Strengths
Experience where it Counts: Northwestern has one of the best backfields with Junior QB Clayton Thorson and RB Justin Jackson.
Jackson may not get much pub but he rushed for more yards than Saquon Barkley last season and has increased his production every year on campus.
Thorson ran with the job last season throwing for more than 3000 yards giving the Wildcats a nicely balanced attack.
Protecting these two are an offensive line with four returning starters – all upperclassmen.
Don’t Forget About the Defense: Last season NW yielded just 22ppg, good for 24th in the nation.
They were very stingy against the run and should be again Tyler Lancaster and Jordon Thompson in the middle. Both have the size to hold up and Lancaster is getting some all conference mentions.
Safety Godwin Igwebuike is a first teamer who makes plays all over the field. He led the team in tackles while Montre Hartage led with 5 interception. The defensive backfield is really good and experienced.
2017 Northwestern Wildcats Predictions: Team Weaknesses
Soft Middle?: Key to the success of their defense a year ago was Dwayne Walker at LB.
He led the team in sacks and was a truly elite athlete at the linebacker position. He was so good you wondered why he chose Northwestern.
The linebacking corps will be solid but you have to wonder if another playmaker like that will emerge. If not they may have to gamble more
On offense it looks like they are filling the lone vacancy on the offensive line with a freshman – Gunnar Vogel.
Northwestern is not the kind of place where frosh see a lot of time and if the struggles the offense might take a while to find their stride.
Thorson will have to find a new primary target this season with Austin Carr having moved on. He had 50 more catches than anyone else last season.
Northwestern Wildcats Prediction: 10-2
This is a very good team with an excellent schedule.
The only thing that could have made it better would have been if this is one of the years they host Wisconsin. That trip to Madison and the following week hosting Penn State are the only blemishes I see.
The last three weeks should be a breeze so if they somehow get ahead of the Badgers in the standing they could stay there. Either way NW should be very happy at the end of the season.
The Wildcats are not as talented as the top teams in the B10 but it would not surprise if they have more wins that the likes of Michigan and Penn State this season.
2017 Northwestern Wildcats Football Schedule
- 9/2/17 3:30 PM ET NEV
- 9/9/17 12:00 PM ET @DUKE
- 9/16/17 7:30 PM ET BGSU
- 9/30/17 TBD @WIS
- 10/7/17 TBD PSU
- 10/14/17 TBD @MD
- 10/21/17 TBD IOWA
- 10/28/17 TBD MSU
- 11/4/17 TBD @NEB
- 11/11/17 TBD PUR
- 11/18/17 TBD MINN
- 11/25/17 TBD @ILL
What do you think about our 2017 Northwestern Wildcats predictions? Please leave us a comment below telling us how you think they’ll do in 2017!
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