Big Ten spring games are set to wrap up and we just saw seven players from the conference go in the first round of the 2022 NFL Draft. Those numbers were second only to, you guessed it, the SEC.
As we prepare for another season of college football, BetRivers sportsbook has posted conference championship odds for each Power 5 conference. Ohio State is the clear-cut favorite after being denied its fifth-straight Big Ten title by hated rival Michigan in 2021. More of the big-name sports betting apps are likely to release their own conference championship betting odds soon.
How does the rest of the conference stack up? Is there anyone that could dethrone the perennial favorites? Let’s dive into the rest of BetRivers Sportsbook’s Big Ten Championship odds.
BetRivers Big Ten Championship Odds
|Team||BetRivers Big Ten Title Odds|
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The difference in odds between Ohio State and Penn State is the biggest discrepancy BetRivers has across all Power 5 conferences, with Clemson (-143) and Miami (+700) of the ACC next.
The case for Ohio State is clear. The Buckeyes return key offensive pieces that helped lead college football last season in points per game and total offensive yards. The Buckeyes are led by Heisman front-runner C.J. Stroud, along with budding superstars WR Jaxon Smith-Njigba and RB TreVeyeon Henderson. Despite losing two of their top receivers to the NFL Draft, Ohio State has had three straight top-five recruiting classes per 247Sports. Those cupboards aren’t bare.
Penn State trails far behind Ohio State in BetRivers’ 2022 Big Ten title odds but had itself an impressive 2022 on the recruiting front. The Nittany Lions recruiting class ranked sixth overall this year, second to only Ohio State in the Big Ten. The key issue to watch here is on the defensive side of the ball. Penn State had one of the top defenses in the nation last year but will be losing key pieces in Jaquan Brisker, Arnold Ebiketie, Brandon Smith, Tariq Castro-Fields, and Jesse Luketa.
Michigan had its time in the limelight last year, throttling Ohio State en route to an absolute beatdown of Iowa to win its first Big Ten Championship since 2004. Similar to the Buckeyes, the Wolverines will be returning key offensive starters of their own. After having a breakout season offensively in 2021, this will be important, especially considering the defensive losses Michigan has to deal with. This includes No. 2 overall NFL draft pick Aidan Hutchinson, fellow first-rounder Dax Hill, and David Ojabo, who was certainly in the first-round discussion until his Pro Day injury.
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The Rest Of The List
Getting Michigan State at +2700 is the homerun swing to take if you’re into that sort of thing. The Spartans put together a really strong season last year but will have to find a way to replace the production from running back Kenneth Walker III, who had the second-most rushing yards and tied for the eighth-most rushing touchdowns in 2021. The Spartans’ defense, particularly in the passing game, has to improve if they want any shot of taking the next step.
Iowa and Wisconsin would be the next two teams to consider, but I’m not buying in.
Wisconsin has to replace nearly all of its defensive starters from last year, and despite having stud sophomore running back Braelon Allen, Graham Mertz is still under center and they have an inexperienced receiving group.
For Iowa, most of its defensive starters are returning, but the Hawkeyes have to replace first-round draft pick Tyler Linderbaum on the line as well as running back Tyler Goodson, and their passing game was pitiful in 2021. The 4.7 yards per passing play Iowa produced last year ranked 120th out of 130 teams. Asking your defense to play a perfect sixty minutes is too tall a task.
AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill