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Rutgers vs. Iowa college football Week 4 odds: Total of 34.5 points lowest nationally in seven years

Points are likely to be at a premium on Saturday when Rutgers visits Iowa.
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By my count, there are 58 college football teams in the FBS averaging more than 34.5 points per game entering Week 4. Saturday's Big Ten opener between offensively challenged Iowa and Rutgers in Piscataway has a total of only 34.5 points at Caesars Sportsbook. The last time a total between FBS schools closed below 35 was in 2015 when Missouri visited Vanderbilt and the Commodores won 10-3. The SportsLine Projection Model forecasts 41 points being scored Saturday. 

Even with that tiny number -- and it may drop even further because it opened at 35.5 -- 80.5% of tickets and 81.0% of the handle at Caesars are on the Under. Fellow Big Ten school Michigan leads the nation in scoring at 55.3 PPG and had 38 points by itself at the half last week against UConn. Ohio State had 42 vs. Toledo at the break.

There are a few favorites of more than 34.5 points this week: Georgia -45 vs. Kent State; Alabama -40.5 vs. Vanderbilt; and NC State -39 vs. UConn. Iowa is currently -7.5.

The Hawkeyes are averaging 13.5 points per game after "exploding" for a season-high 27 last week in a shutout of Nevada. Iowa had six offensive plays of 20 or more yards against the Wolfpack after having two in its first two games. Defensively, Coach Kirk Ferentz's club limited Nevada – a team that entered averaging 336.3 yards – to just 151 yards total offense. It was the second Iowa opponent this season that gained 151 yards or fewer.

It was Iowa's sixth shutout since 2016, tied with Penn State, UAB and Virginia Tech for the fourth-most in the country over that span. The Hawkeyes have allowed 13 points in their first three games – the second-fewest in the first three games in the AP Poll era (since 1936).

Rutgers is averaging 34.7 points per game, but that's hugely inflated by a 66-7 win over FCS school Wagner in Week 2. Still, the Scarlet Knights have scored in each of the last 11 quarters. Defensively, Rutgers is second nationally and first among Power 5 teams with only 32.3 rushing yards allowed per game. The 97 rushing yards permitted are the fewest allowed by Rutgers in the first three games of a season since 1940 (73).

Iowa is 2-0 all-time vs. Rutgers and the teams haven't met since 2019. Rutgers seeks to start 4-0 for the first time since 2012.

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