IOWA CITY, Iowa - The much-anticipated Iowa-Illinois game this Saturday (1 p.m. CT, FS1) lost some of its luster when Illini coach and former Hawkeye Bret Bielema was sidelined with COVID-19.
Despite that disappointing news, the show must (and will) go on. The Hawkeyes are chasing a Big Ten West Division title. The Illini are pursuing bowl eligibility.
Here's a closer look at this year's matchup from a gambling perspective:
Point Spreads: The game opened with Iowa -10.0 on Sunday at Vegas Insider (VI). The VI consensus showed the number at the Hawkeyes -12.0 as of Thursday afternoon. Draft Kings showed it at Illinois +13.0, while Fan Duel and Super Book were the low at the Illini +11.5.
If you're shopping locally, Elite Sportsbook in Riverside, Iowa, had it at Iowa -12.5.
Money Lines: The VI consensus opened with Iowa -480 and Illinois +350. Iowa's number moved to -450 as of Thursday afternoon with Illinois at +370. Draft Kings was the high on the Hawkeyes at -525 with Circa the lowest on the Hawkeyes at -440. BET MGM are the low on the Illini (+340), and Draft Kings the high (+385).
Locally, Elite showed Iowa at -500 and Illinois at +375.
Over/Under: Also referred to as "the total", this number represents the amount of combined points scored by the two teams. As of Thursday morning, VI consensus puts it at 38.5, where it opened on Sunday. All of the books in the consensus showed it at 38.5 Thursday afternoon other than Fan Duel (37.5).
Locally, Elite showed it at 38.5.
Public Percentages Wagered: Books track the percentages of bets placed on each team in a given game.
As of Thursday morning, 62 percent of the wagers were made on the Illini, according to ActionNetwork.com, which showed the point spread as Iowa -11.5.
These percentages often shift as the game draws closer. The "sharps" (professional gamblers) frequently come in late with their bets.
-Fighting Illini are 4-0-1 Against The Spread (ATS) vs. a team with a winning record.
-Illinois is 7-2 ATS in its last 9 games in November.
-Fighting Illini are 1-3-1 ATS in their last 5 games following a ATS win.
-Illinois is 5-2 ATS in its last 7 conference games.
-Fighting Illini are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 games following a straight up win.
-Under is 8-0 in Illinois' last 8 games overall.
-Under is 4-0 in Fighting Illini last 4 road games.
-Hawkeyes are 7-2 ATS in their last 9 games following a straight up win.
-Iowa is 5-2 ATS in its last 7 home games.
-Hawkeyes are 9-4 ATS in their last 13 games as a favorite.
-Iowa is 9-4-1 ATS in its last 14 conference games.
-Hawkeyes are 11-5-1 ATS in their last 17 games overall.
-Under is 6-1 in Hawkeyes last 7 games following a ATS win.
-Under is 9-3-1 in Iowa's last 13 games as a home favorite.
-Fighting Illini are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 meetings.
-Road team is 6-1 ATS in their last 7 meetings.