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Pioneer Press Big Ten football picks: Week 3

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Pioneer Press Big Ten football picks: Week 3

Gophers beat reporter Andy Greder picks this week’s games:

FRIDAY

MARYLAND AT ILLINOIS, 8 p.m., FS1

The Illini will follow a season-opening win against Nebraska with three consecutive losses. That was a short honeymoon for Bret Bielema. Maryland, 29-20

SATURDAY

NO. 8 CINCINNATI AT INDIANA, 11 a.m., ESPN

The preseason darling Hoosiers were destroyed by Iowa in the opener, and their blowout win over FCS Idaho means little because the Bearcats will do what the Hawkeyes did. Cincinnati, 35-17 

NORTHERN ILLINOIS at No. 25 MICHIGAN, 11 a.m., BTN

When Jim Harbaugh’s quotes include George Patton and Neil Armstrong, you know the quirky ol’ ball coach is feeling pretty good about his team. Michigan, 40-10

MICHIGAN STATE AT NO. 24 Miami (Fla.), 11 a.m., ABC

The Spartans have had the lead longer in two games this season than they did in seven in 2020. They might add to that stat in this one, but they won’t leave with a win. Miami, 28-24

NEBRASKA AT NO. 3 OKLAHOMA, 11 a.m., FOX

The Cornhuskers reportedly tried to get out of rekindling their lost rivalry with Oklahoma. After this blowout, they will regret that not happening. Oklahoma, 42-18

GOPHERS AT COLORADO, NOON, PAC-12N

Thousands of Minnesota fans will make the trip to Boulder for this rare matchup. The team will make it entertaining, and won’t spoil the visit. Gophers, 24-21

PURDUE AT NO. 12 NOTRE DAME, 1:30 p.m., NBC

College football is weird. Example 12,472: Notre Dame won’t allow the Boilermakers to bring their 10-foot tall, 565-pound drum into its stadium’s main tunnel, so Purdue will have to go without the “World’s Largest Drum.” Notre Dame, 38-24

KENT STATE AT No. 5 IOWA, 2:30 p.m., BTN

The Big Ten West — and maybe the Big Ten Conference — runs through Iowa City after the Hawkeyes’ defense smothered two ranked teams to start the season. Iowa, 28-3

TULSA AT No. 9 OHIO STATE, 2:30 p.m., FS1

Oregon said they wanted to run the ball just like the Gophers did against Ohio State. Then the Ducks had even more success, and Buckeyes coach Ryan Day wouldn’t solo tackle the status of Key Coombs as defensive coordinator. Ohio State, 40-20

DELAWARE AT RUTGERS, 2:30 p.m., FS1

Given the thrilling nature of this matchup, this is a perfect place to share that we went 13-1 in Big Ten picks in Week 2. Thanks a lot, Ohio State. Rutgers, 24-9

NORTHWESTERN AT DUKE, 3 p.m., ACCN

The Wall Street Journal reported Oregon State-Purdue was the least-watched FOX game on Sept. 4, showing the new alliance’s scheduling won’t benefit everyone. Northwestern, 21-17

NO. 22 AUBURN at NO. 10 PENN STATE, 6:30 p.m. ABC

Auburn hasn’t played a road Big Ten game in nine decades and their first one is a “White Out” game at Happy Valley. Good luck with all that. Penn State, 31-23

Our picks: 20-3

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