Notre Dame a rare double-digit favorite at Stanford in Rivalry Week opening lines

Notre Dame football
Notre Dame football (AP PHOTO/MICHAEL CONROY)
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Oddsmakers at Circa Sports opened No. 15 Notre Dame a 14.5-point favorite at Stanford for their Week 14 clash Saturday. The betting total is set at 53 points. CG Technology initially offered the Irish a 3-point favorite in Game of the Year lines in May.

Bettors must go back to 2006 to uncover the last time the Irish lay double digits in the annual fight for the Legends Trophy. Notre Dame won but failed to best the number in a 31-10 win as heavy 29.5-point chalk that season. The program, in fact, has failed to cover the spread in its last three gifting 10 points or more in the series.

This is just the seventh time the Cardinal has caught double digits on the oddsboard behind head coach David Shaw. Four of these games have occurred in the 2019 campaign. The ninth-year coach is a solid 15-8 against the spread (65.2%) kicking off the betting underdog in his career.

Notre Dame is 10-1 SU and 7-4 ATS in the last 11 games in the series coming off a win, while the Cardinal enters after a loss. Stanford has dropped three straight contests after falling to Cal 24-20 as a 2-point favorite last time out.

Here’s a look at all the Rivalry Week opening odds coming out Sunday for Big Ten matchups and Indiana FBS programs. This includes No. 2 Ohio State sitting on a big number at the Big House for its annual clash with No. 10 Michigan, as well Illinois in a rare spot laying points against Northwestern in the Land of Lincoln battle.

Lines are courtesy of Circa Sports. Updated AP Top 25 polling numbers are used for rankings.

All games Saturday except Iowa at Nebraska in the Heroes Game, which kicks off Friday, Nov. 29 at 2:30 p.m. ET / 1:30 p.m. CT (BTN)

Indiana FBS programs

Indiana (-5, 55) at Purdue

Indiana opens the betting favorite in its rivalry with Purdue for the first time since 2016. The Boilermakers have covered more than two-thirds (13-6 ATS) of all contests as underdogs in the Jeff Brohm era.

The last five battles for the Old Oaken Bucket at Ross-Ade Stadium has cashed OVER tickets, and by a solid 16.3 margin (58.3 avg. total). The winner in each game has lit up the scoreboard for at least 31 points.

Miami (OH) at Ball State (-2.5, 56)

The Red Bird Rivalry sees Ball State open the betting favorite (-2.5) for the first time in the last four matchups, despite the opposite direction each program is headed.

Miami (OH) have won five straight contests, including three as the betting underdog. The defense is allowing just 16.7 points per game in this span. After beating its first three MAC rivals in the 2019 campaign, the Cardinals have lost four conference games in a row. They have kicked off betting favorites in all but one in this stretch. The defense is allowing an average 38.8 points in this span.

Big Ten matchups

No. 19 Iowa (-3, 48.5) at Nebraska

Iowa has kicked off the betting favorite in each of the last five Heroes Games. It averages 37.8 points per contests, as opposed to 21.8 for the Cornhuskers. The OVER has cashed in all but one matchup.

Nebraska snapped a horrendous seven game run without covering a spread with a 54-7 rout over Maryland as a touchdown favorite last Saturday. It put up 10 points or more in each quarter.

No. 13 Wisconsin (-3.5, 48) at No. 9 Minnesota

The battle for Paul Bunyan’s Axe sees Minnesota open as a 3.5-point pup hosting Wisconsin at TCF Bank Stadium. Home underdogs of a touchdown or less in the last 19 Big Ten matchups between ranked teams are 4-15 SU and 5-12-2 ATS overall.

Rutgers at No. 12 Penn State (-41, 53)

The betting market has gifted Rutgers 20-plus points on the oddsboard in 10 of its last 11 road B1G matchups. The program is winless and 3-7-1 ATS in this stretch, averaging just 6.1 points.

Northwestern at Illinois (-9, 45)

This is the first time since 2011 the Illini lay points to Northwestern in the battle for the Land of Lincoln Trophy. Since 1990, Illinois is 8-6 SU and 4-10 ATS as the betting favorite in the series, including a 3-3 SU and 2-4 ATS mark against Wildcats’ longtime head coach Pat Fitzgerald.

No. 2 Ohio State (-10, 54) at No. 10 Michigan

CG technology listed the Wolverines 3-point chalk in Game of the Year lines in May, while Golden Nugget dangled -3.5 in favor of Michigan. FanDuel opened The Game a pick ‘em over the summer.

If line shopping the updated lines, take note the Buckeyes have claimed victory by more than 11 points just once in their last 19 trips to the Big House.

Maryland at Michigan State (-18, 51)

The UNDER has cased in all five matchups since the Terps joined the Big Ten conference. The combined score (35.8) is falling an average two touchdowns below a 49.8 total. Maryland has posted more than 15 points in just one meeting, a 28-17 victory as 2-point pups in 2016.

Sparty is 2-9 ATS in its last 11 conference games, posting just 16.8 points per game.

Trends compiled with queries performed at SportsDatabase.

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