WNUR’s Predictions of Northwestern vs. Indiana

The WNUR Sports staff weighs in with their predictions for the Northwestern Wildcats football team’s matchup with the Indiana Hoosiers on Saturday.

Photo Courtesy of The Daily Northwestern.

College football is a lot of things. Predictable is not one of them. The Minnesota Golden Gophers currently possess the longest winning streak in the Big Ten at five games and sit 4-0 on the season. The Northwestern Wildcats, whom many predicted would have a down year with the losses of Dan Persa, Jeremy Ebert, and Drake Dunsmore, are also 4-0 and on the brink of being ranked nationally. So, logically, predictions should be hard, right? WRONG! Not for WNUR’s Sam Block, who correctly predicted the score of last week’s game, 38-7. We should all aspire to be as awesome as this visionary ‘Cats fan. For this reason, Sam will pick first this week.

Sam Block (@Blockless): Northwestern, 31-21. The last time NU was undefeated and at home in Big Ten play, they lost to a bad Purdue team… who was starting their back up quarterback. I think NU’s defense is enough to make this time different, but it won’t be the blow out everyone expects. Watch for Brian Arnfelt to be part of a turnover, which has been a difference maker for the ‘Cats. Player to Watch: Brian Arnfelt.

Seth Bernstein (@SethBernstein67): 35-17 Northwestern. Northwestern took care of business in the non-conference portion of the schedule. Indiana is just not a very good football team and I expect more of the same from The Wildcats: running the ball a lot and continuing to show off that improved defense. Player to Watch: Mike Trumpy.

Michael Anders (@MikeAnders819): Northwestern wins 31-24. While Indiana does lead the Big 10 in passing, these numbers have been piled up against Indiana State, Massachusetts, and Ball State. The Cats secondary has had plenty of issues this year but they should put up a fight against Hoosier backup QB Cameron Coffman, who replaced starter Tre Roberson after he broke his leg in Week 2. NU should dominate time of possession against Indiana’s shoddy run defense. Player to Watch: Chi Chi Ariguzo.

Danny Moran (@DannyJMoran): Northwestern 41, Indiana 28. This game is tailored made for Kain Colter to use his scrambling ability. He ate Indiana alive last season as a wide receiver but will do it with his legs on Saturday, with a healthy dose of Venric Mark on the side. Indiana’s two quarterback duo will give the Northwestern secondary some trouble but the front seven does enough to give the Wildcats a comfortable win. Player to Watch: Kain Colter.

Jon Rosenberg (@BigJonRosenberg): Northwestern 33, Indiana 17. Indiana struggled with Tre Roberson taking snaps. Without him, they don’t stand a chance. Player to Watch: Nick VanHoose will have a pick 6.

John Castellanos (@JJCast15): Northwestern 34, Indiana 17. NU comes running out of the gates in the first half, giving the ‘Cats a comfortable lead throughout the game. Players to Watch: Offense: Tony Jones, Defense: David Nwabuisi.

Nick Petro (@NickyPetro): Northwestern 34, Indiana 17. The Wildcats will roll to their first Top-25 ranking since the beginning of the 2010 season, in which they also started 5-0. An all-offense, no-defense game is the only way the Hoosiers sneak out of Ryan Field with a win, but Northwestern’s defense has looked much improved since the Syracuse shoot-out. Venric Mark should not have trouble running wild over the Indiana front seven. Player To Watch: Jeff Budzien (keeping that streak going, baby!).

Jeffrey Eisenband (@JeffEisenband): Northwestern, 31-17. Indiana showed significant improvement in 2012 after starting 2-0, but the Week Two injury to quarterback Tre Roberson is a hole left unfilled. The Hoosiers will hang around in the first half before letting the ‘Cats pull away. Expect NU to keep up their consistency on defense against a shaky offense. Player to Watch: Chi Chi Ariguzo.

Cameron Songer (@CameronSonger): Northwestern wins, 24-21. There’s no doubt in my mind Northwestern has more talent, but Indiana is coming off a bye following a loss to Ball State. The Hoosiers are angry and ready to punish the ‘Cats, who may be overlooking a team they beat handily last year. This game will be closer than people think unless the ‘Cats can bury Indiana early. Let Indiana hang around, and Indiana QB Cameron Coffman (making his his first career road start) will gain confidence. If Northwestern’s secondary can rattle him in the first half, it’ll be an easy Wildcats win.

Cameron Albert-Deitch (@c_albertdeitch): 28-17, Northwestern. Indiana is a surprising 2-1 heading into B1G play, but they’re still very much conference lightweights after losing a shootout to Ball State last week. Venric Mark will impress again with at least another two rushing touchdowns, leading the ‘Cats to their first conference win and a 5-0 record. Player to Watch: Venric Mark.

Eric Klaus: 35-20 NU.  Northwestern should have little trouble putting up points against a somewhat improved Indiana defense.  I expect the Wildcats to have a strong first-half before slowing down the game and controlling the clock with a run-dominated second-half.  Cam Coffman and the IU passing offense may give the Northwestern defense some trouble throughout, however this will not be enough to overcome NU’s better overall talent. Player to Watch:  CB Nick VanHoose.

Greg Mroz (@TheeMrClean): Northwestern 42, Indiana 14. IU has a backup quarterback and a poor defense. The Cats will run all over the Hoosiers, and except lots of subs to come into the game in the second half. Mike Trumpy will be interesting to watch tomorrow because his role is at this point undefined, and once this team starts playing meaningful conference games, how much will he be used? For NU’s sake, he will be very active against IU. Player to Watch: Mike Trumpy.

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