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Purdue Boilermakers at Illinois Fighting Illini - 10/8/16 College Football Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Purdue Boilermakers (2-2) at Illinois Fighting Illini (1-3)

College Football: Saturday, October 8, 2016 at 3:30 pm (Memorial Stadium)

The Line: Illinois Fighting Illini -9 -- Over/Under: 53.5 See the Latest Odds

TV: BTN, BTN2

Over at Memorial Stadium in Champaign on Saturday, October 8, we’ve got a pretty good college football matchup headed our way when the Purdue Boilermakers travel to meet the Illinois Fighting Illini. 

In their last outing this past Saturday, Purdue was embarrassed by Maryland 50-7. The Boilermakers allowed 204 yards on seven carries to RB Ty Johnson, and were down 36-0 heading into the fourth quarter. Purdue QB David Blough finished 18-of-41 for 132 yards and one touchdown to Cole Herdman, who had 23 yards on four catches. On the ground, the Boilermakers didn’t have any luck either, with Markell Jones carrying 12 times for a paltry 23 yards. 

Purdue Boilermakers at Illinois Fighting Illini - 10/8/16 College Football Pick, Odds, and Prediction

USA TODAY Sports

On the year thus far, Blough has put up a 96-of-171 line for 1078 yards and a 6:7 TD:INT ratio, while Jones leads the Purdue runners with 73 carries for 339 yards and two touchdowns. Domonique Young is the Boilermakers’ leading receiver, with 23 grabs for 279 yards and one score. 

Over on the Illinois side, they’re sporting a 1-3 record, opening the season with a win and losing their next three games by a combined 113-49 score. In the Illini’s last outing Saturday at Nebraska, it was another loss 31-16. Illinois was actually up 16-10 at the start of the fourth quarter, but then proceeded to allow three unanswered touchdowns. Fighting Illini QB Wes Lunt had another uninspired day with a 13-of-22 line for 133 yards, most going to lead receiver Malik Turner (five receptions; 57 yards). As for the running game, Illinois wasn’t that proficient either, with Reggie Corbin leading the way on nine carries for 72 yards. 

In 2016, Lunt has put up a 74-of-120 line for 798 yards and six touchdowns. Kendrick Foster sits atop the rushers with 25 carries for 221 yards and three scores, while Turner leads the Illini receivers with 20 receptions and three touchdowns with 280 yards total. 

Purdue is 5-1 ATS in their last six games following a straight-up loss, and 4-1 ATS in their last five games following an ATS loss. Purdue is also 4-1 ATS in their last five road games, and 1-4 ATS in their last five games overall. 

Meanwhile, Illinois is 5-2 ATS in their last seven games in October, and 2-5 ATS in their last seven conference games. Illinois is also 1-5 ATS in their last six home games, and 2-5 ATS in their last seven overall. 

So far this season, Purdue has been following the script: they’re beating the teams they should beat, and getting destroyed by the ones they shouldn’t beat. It’s a small sample size, but in their two losses, Purdue has been beaten by a combined 61 points. This game is one of the few plausibly winnable outings the Boilermakers have left, and beating Illinois is their last chance to gain some momentum before running the gauntlet in the middle of their schedule. All of that said, I don’t think Purdue has the defensive prowess to stop Illinois (though the Illini won’t run wild quite like Maryland did), but should be able to slow them down enough to cover. If the line were any thinner, I wouldn’t be so sure about that, though.

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Purdue Boilermakers +9

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