Northwestern Football schedule and complete game predictions

(Photo by Adam Hunger/Getty Images)
(Photo by Adam Hunger/Getty Images) /

After finishing last season with a 7-6 record and earning a trip to the Pinstripe Bowl, where the Wildcats beat Pitt, Northwestern could be poised for Big Ten West title contention.

It is no secret that Northwestern is at a turning point in its football program’s tenure. But the Big Ten is not the easiest conference and they will have their work cut out for them. With that said Northwestern does have a pretty favorable schedule that, if everything goes right, should see the Wildcats above .500 for another season and earning a bowl bid.


September 2nd: vs. Nevada

September 9th: at Duke

September 16th: vs. Bowling Green

September 30th: Wisconsin

October 7th: vs. Penn State

October 14th: at Maryland

October 21st: vs. Iowa

October 28th: vs. Michigan State

November 4th: at Nebraska

November 11th: vs. Purdue

November 18th: vs. Minnesota

November 25th: at Illinois

Game-by-game predictions

In my opinion, Northwestern starts off the season with a favorable non-conference schedule, which I believe will see them start the season 3-0. After their non-conference schedule wraps up, things start to get a little tougher for the Wildcats.

Northwestern will open up Big Ten play against a tough Wisconsin Badgers team. Not only do they have to open up against the Badgers but they do so in Madison, Wisconsin at Camp Randall Stadium. Any Big Ten fan knows how tough that place is to go into and get a win. I have the Wildcats dropping this game to Wisconsin.

The following three games are toss ups, but Northwestern could easily come out of all three with wins. Penn State at home will be a tough game but I see the Wildcats surviving a close game. Then they have Maryland and Iowa back to back. Both of those games are winnable for the Wildcats as you never know what to expect from an Iowa team. I do see them dropping one of these games probably to Maryland. Following a win against Iowa, Northwestern will be 5-2.

Following the Iowa game, the Wildcats will again hit another tough two game stretch, Michigan State at home and traveling to Nebraska. Sparty is always a tough matchup and no team loves going into Nebraska to play a game. These two games should be interesting games between evenly matched teams, so I’ll say the Wildcats split and go 1-1 bringing their season record to 6-3.

Next: Previewing the 2017 Northwestern offense

The Wildcats will finish up with Purdue, Minnesota and Illinois, all three of these games the Wildcats should be favored in for sure. Does that mean Northwestern could finish the season at 9-3? Sure, but not so fast! I have Minnesota beating the Wildcats at home in a very close game. The Wildcats will wrap up the season with a win against the Illini and finish their season at 8-4.

Obviously, things can change from August to November but as of right now this is how I see the season going down for the Wildcats. It will be interesting to see how competitive they can be this season and seasons to come.