It’s summer, which means it’s officially time to go through schedules and predict exactly how teams will finish with 100 percent accuracy.

Let’s do it.

Instead of picking exact records, though, I think it’s interesting to look at over/under regular season win totals set by oddsmakers. With the NFL draft over, set the over/under for each B1G team’s regular-season win total.

Today, I broke down the B1G West:


Over/under — 10 wins

The bet — Over

If I’m picking a team to start in the top five, you better believe that I’m predicting that they’ll win 11 games. That’s the case for the Badgers, who return that entire offensive line, the preseason Heisman Trophy favorite in Jonathan Taylor, as well as some veteran pieces on the defensive side. A non-conference schedule of Western Kentucky, New Mexico and BYU doesn’t scare me (all at home), nor does a B1G West that Wisconsin is 12-0 against the last two years. Wisconsin’s road schedule is certainly more difficult than it was last year (at Iowa, at Michigan, at Penn State), but I still like the odds of Paul Chryst leading the way to an 11-1 regular season.


Over/under — 7.5 wins

The bet — Under

I know, I know, I know. Northwestern doesn’t get enough preseason love. As Pat Fitzgerald will remind you, the Wildcats have the longest active winning streak in FBS. I get all of that. Here’s why I’m not betting on an 8-4 season, though. Northwestern has to play an FBS-leading 11 Power 5 opponents. Yes, that includes Notre Dame. That’s with Clayton Thorson trying to recover from his ACL tear, and replacing arguably the best offensive player in program history in Justin Jackson. Add in the new pieces Northwestern has on defense and I’m not sold on an 8-win season.


Over/under — 7.5 wins

The bet — Over

Iowa has some tough losses on the back end of that defense to overcome with Josey Jewell and Josh Jackson off to the NFL. But I like the Hawkeyes’ chances of getting to eight wins because of the defensive line depth and the expected improvement in the passing game. I wrote about why I thought Nate Stanley held Iowa back at times last year, but with a year of experience under his belt, I like his chances of being more consistent, especially with weapons like Noah Fant returning. Plus, Iowa got a favorable draw with three home non-conference games (the Cy-Hawk game will be a good one) and a favorable crossover slate (at Indiana, vs. Maryland, at Penn State). I have no problem setting the bar at eight wins.


Over/under — 6 wins

The bet — Stay away

I know this might sound like a cop out, but I think this could be a push. It’s so, so, so difficult to predict what a team will look like without a clear picture of what the offensive identity will be because of the quarterback situation. As much as I believe in P.J. Fleck’s ability to build an offense, I’m in wait-and-see mode with how he develops his new starting quarterback.

Credit: Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

I thought losing Shannon Brooks was a brutal preseason blow, though Rodney Smith is more than capable of handling the load, especially if Minnesota can get something going in the passing game. I like a non-conference slate that somehow lacks a Power 5 opponent, but I don’t like B1G home games against three teams who won bowl games. I’ll set the bar at 6 wins and stay far, far away from this one.


Over/under — 5.5 wins

The bet — Over

No, I’m not saying Tom Osborne 2.0 is going to take the field for Nebraska this fall. But the good news is that Mike Riley 2.0 isn’t taking the field, either. Scott Frost will completely turn the Huskers around on the offensive side. I suspect there will still be some growing pains at quarterback considering it’ll likely be a true freshman in Adrian Martinez, or it’ll be Tristan Gebbia, who is new to Frost’s system. That said, the Huskers are loaded at the skill positions and should be in good shape to light up more scoreboards than they did last year. As for stopping other teams from doing that, I’m not as sold. I still think this is more of a 6-7 win team even with that brutal start to B1G play (at Michigan, vs. Purdue, at Wisconsin, at Northwestern). Despite a daunting conference schedule, the Huskers still get back to bowl eligibility in Year 1 of the Frost era.


Over/under — 5.5 wins

The bet — Over

Wait…the oddsmakers know that Jeff Brohm is coaching Purdue now…right? That’s an insultingly low bar to set after what he did to revive that program in Year 1. I understand that the Boilermakers lost a ton of their defensive production (they rank 125th in that department), but this is still a Purdue defensive staff that has a reputation for stopping the run. That’s a pretty good common denominator to winning games in the B1G. Like Northwestern, Purdue also has 11 Power 5 opponents, but the good news is that six of them are at home. I had Purdue more in the 7-8 win range, despite all of those question marks on defense. I’d be stunned if they missed a bowl game and took a step back in Brohm’s second season.


Over/under — 3.5 wins

The bet — Under

Gosh, it’s not often that I’d take the under for 3.5 wins. I know that Illinois was suuuuuuuuper young last year, but what have we seen from Lovie Smith that suggests he’s the right guy to develop his young roster? I mean, this was a team that was outscored 118-303 in a winless conference season last year. Illinois fired offensive coordinator Garrick McGee, who was supposed to be the program’s big assistant staff hire after Smith took over. Now, they have a first-year offensive coordinator with zero depth/experience at quarterback and three of their B1G home games are against teams who won bowl games last year. Sorry, but that’s not a recipe but that’s not a recipe that suggests Smith is about to have his best season in Champaign.