Notre Dame Fighting Irish vs Wisconsin Badgers Prediction, Odds and Preview - 09/25/2021

by Amedeus Mastrangelo

Game Time: 12:00 pm ET, Saturday, September 25, 2021
Venue:  Soldier Field, Chicago, IL
Where to Watch:  Fox


Opening Odds at USA Sportsbooks

DraftKings:  Point Spread:  Notre Dame +5.5, Wisconsin -5.5; Over/Under:  46.5 points
Bet365:  Point Spread:  Notre Dame +5.5, Wisconsin -5.5; Over/Under:  47 points
BetMGM:  Point Spread:  Notre Dame +5.5, Wisconsin -5.5; Over/Under:  46.5 points

Season Record

Notre Dame Fighting Irish:  3-0 (3rd place, Independents)
Wisconsin Badgers:  1-1 (5th place, Big Ten West)
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Notre Dame Fighting Irish vs Wisconsin Badgers Preview and Analysis

Recent Form
Notre Dame Fighting Irish:  won at home on Sep. 18 against the Purdue Boilermakers 27-13.
Wisconsin Badgers:  won at home on Sep. 11 against the Eastern Michigan Eagles 34-7.

Notre Dame Fighting Irish Analysis

Notre Dame is coming into this game with a 3-0 record overall and is 1-0 in road games where they will be here away from South Bend. This will be their 4th non-conference game in a row. Notre Dame won at home against Purdue last week but they have not looked as good this year as they have in recent years. In that game, their starter Jack Coan completed 15/31 passes for 223 yards and 2 touchdowns. They barely ran the ball at all in that one as Kyren Williams led their team with 91 rushing yards and 1 touchdown on 12 carries, but no one else really did much in the running game. Avery Davis had a big day on the receiving end as he led the team with 120 receiving yards and 1 touchdown on 5 receptions. Kyle Hamilton led the defense with 7 solo tackles and 3 assisted ones, also making 1 interception in that game as well. DJ Brown also had an interception in that game and a few of their defensive players were able to get to the opposing quarterback for some sacks in that one. They have scored 100 points in their first 3 games and have allowed their opponents to score 80 points against them. Their offense is averaging 407.7 YPG while their defense is allowing 381 YPG.

Wisconsin Badgers Analysis

Wisconsin is coming into this college football game with a 1-1 record overall and a 1-1 record in their home games but this game will actually be on a neutral field and the first time that Wisconsin will not be playing at home this season. They are 0-1 in their conference games but this one is another non-conference game for them. They did not play over the last weekend so their last game would have been a win against EMU on September 11. Graham Mertz played alright in that game completing 14/17 passes for 141 yards, zero touchdowns, and zero interceptions. Chez Mellusi had a big day as he led the team in rushing with 144 yards and 1 TD on 20 carries. Isaac Guerendo also had 92 rushing yards and 1 TD on 4 carries. The receiving corps had a very quiet day as Kendric Pryor led the team with 54 receiving yards on 4 receptions. Jake Ferguson had just 17 yards on 3 receptions as well. Matt Henningsen, Tatum Grass, Semar Melvin, Scott Nelson, Spencer Lytle, and Alexander Smith all led the defense with 2 solo tackles but it was Henningsen who also had a sack as well. That was the only sack in the game for them while Donte Burton came away with the only interception for them in the game. They have scored 44 points in their first 2 games and have allowed their opponents to score 23 points against them. Their offense is averaging 438.5 YPG while their defense is allowing 194.5 YPG.


Notre Dame vs Wisconsin Prediction

Notre Dame is ranked 12th on the AP poll while Wisconsin is ranked 18th yet they come in a 6 point favorite here on a neutral site. Wisconsin has had an extra week to prepare for this game with their bye last week while Notre Dame has looked like they are struggling to get by some of the teams they have played so far. Draftkings sportsbook has the total set very low in this game and both teams are likely to score some points here. Notre Dame does not have the best defense and will have to throw the ball more if they fall behind. The best bet to play here is on the over as the total is so low it will surely go over. Wisconsin has looked like the better team here and with the rest as well, the only way to bet the side would be Wisconsin on the moneyline.
Notre Dame Wisconsin Prediction:  Our NCAAF Pick for Saturday, September 25, 2021 (12:00 pm ET start time) is Wisconsin 34 Notre Dame 28.
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NCAAF Betting Trends

Notre Dame Fighting Irish: 16-12 ATS in all games. 3-1 ATS when the total is between 42.5 and 49.
Wisconsin Badgers: 2-7 ATS when the total is between 42.5 and 49. 0-1 ATS as a neutral field favorite of 7 points or less.

Key Injuries

Notre Dame Fighting Irish:  L. Diggs (RB) day-to-day - Undisclosed injury. C. Flemister (RB) day-to-day - Undisclosed injury. P. Kollie (LB) day-to-day - Undisclosed injury.
Wisconsin Badgers:  D. Harrell (CB) Ques Sept 25 - Arm injury. A. Witt (LB) Ques Sept 25 - Undisclosed injury. L. Chenal (LB) Out indefinitely - Illness.

Players to Watch

Notre Dame Fighting Irish: Michael Mayer is one player to watch here. He has a team-best 206 receiving yards and 3 TDs on the season. If Notre Dame is to pull off the upset here they will need Mayer to play at his best and make some big catches in key moments. Look for him to be a difference maker for them here. 
Wisconsin Badgers: Chez Mellusi is one player to watch in this one. He leads his team in rushing yards and in touchdowns. He had a big game last week with over 100 rushing yards and he will be looking to duplicate that here. To win this one, Wisconsin will want to run the ball and control the clock so look for him to get a lot of touches in this one.

Notable Quotes

"I liked the way our guys prepared this week. Our level of preparation rose and so did our performance. It wasn't the best by any means. But we developed some players today. They got grittier." - Brian Kelly on how his team prepared for their Purdue game which they went on to win.
“He'll be an opponent” - Paul Chryst on facing Notre Dame quarterback Jack Coan.

Starting Lineups

Notre Dame Fighting Irish
WR Austin Jr., Kevin 
WR Lenzy, Braden 
WR Davis, Avery 
TE Mayer, Michael 
QB Coan, Jack 
RB Williams, Kyren 
Wisconsin Badgers
WR Pryor, Kendric 
WR Davis III, Danny 
TE Ferguson, Jake 
QB Mertz, Graham 
RB Mellusi, Chez 
FB Chenal, John 

Statistical Leaders

Notre Dame Fighting Irish
Passing: J. Coan (828)
Rushing: K. Williams (211)
Receiving: M. Mayer (206)
Touchdowns: M. Mayer (3)
Sacks: I. Foskey (3.5)
Tackles: J. Bertrand (1)
Wisconsin Badgers
Passing: G. Mertz (326)
Rushing: C. Mellusi (265)
Receiving: D. Davis III (129)
Touchdowns: C. Mellusi (2)
Sacks: N. Herbig (1.5)
Tackles: S. Nelson (8)
Notre Dame Fighting Irish: Brian Kelly (12th season)
Wisconsin Badgers: Paul Chryst (7th season)

Weather Forecast

67 degrees F mostly sunny, 50% humidity, 0% chance of rain, up to 11 mph wind speeds W.

Amedeus Mastrangelo

About the Author:

Amedeus Mastrangelo has been heavily wagering on all sports for years and plays just about everything, including sides, totals, favorites, underdogs, against the spread, alternative spreads, first half, second half, player props, and futures. The bottom line is, if Mastrangelo can see an edge in any way shape or form, then he's going to take advantage.

All photographic images used for editorial content have been licensed from the Associated Press.

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