NCAA Football Free Betting Pick: Rutgers Scarlet Knights vs. Illinois Fighting Illini

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The Rutgers Scarlet Knights (+21) are heading west to visit the Illinois Fighting Illini at Memorial Stadium. This conference showdown will get going at 3:30 p.m. ET and BTN is scheduled to have the TV rights.

Betting Preview: Rutgers Scarlet Knights at Illinois Fighting Illini

Rutgers is the noticeable underdog here and is currently receiving three touchdowns by bookmakers. If the Scarlet Knights get out in front early on it would result in a decent live betting scenario. Oddsmakers have determined the over/under (O/U) to be 49 points.

This matchup’s line has recently moved down from -20 to where it stands now (-21). The game’s over/under has not moved after being initially set at 49.

The Scarlet Knights have gained 0.5 units so far and are 2-6 against the spread (ATS). The team’s posted an O/U record of 4-3-1.

The Fighting Illini are down 1.1 units for moneyline bettors this season. They’re 5-3 ATS and have an O/U record of 3-5.

The Scarlet Knights are 2-6 straight up (SU), including 0-5 SU against Big 10 opponents. The Fighting Illini are 4-4 SU overall and 2-3 SU in conference play.

When these two schools met a year ago, Illinois knocked off Rutgers by three touchdowns 38-17.

The Scarlet Knights are coming off a 44-34 victory over Liberty last week in which Johnny Langan completed 15 passes on 21 attempts for 192 yards and two touchdowns. Langan (118 yards on 21 rush attempts, one TD) also mounted the ground attack and was complemented by Isaih Pacheco (107 yards on 19 carries, two TDs). Bo Melton (five receptions, 47 yards) and Isaiah Washington (four catches, 89 yards, one TD) shared the receiving duties in the win.

Illinois just earned a 24-6 win over Purdue. The defense let the Boilermakers rush for 135 yards on 44 attempts. Zander Horvath had a productive outing in the loss for Purdue, posting 54 rushing yards on nine attempts. For Illinois, Brandon Peters completed three-of-six passes for 26 yards. Dre Brown (131 rushing yards on 18 attempts) and the signal-caller Peters (17 yards on 12 carries, one TD) mounted the running attack as Donny Navarro (one receptions, 17 yards) and Justice Williams (one catch, eight yards) led the pass-catching attack in the win.

In terms of offensive play-calling, each of these teams has a similar run-pass ratio on the season. Rutgers has run the ball on 60.2 percent of its offensive possessions while Illinois has a rush percentage of 59.4. The Scarlet Knights have run for 130.4 yards per game (including 98 per game against Big Ten opponents) and have nine touchdowns on the ground this year. The Fighting Illini are putting up 157.9 rushing yards per game (151.8 in conference) and have 14 total rush TDs.

The Scarlet Knights offensive scheme has logged 151.1 yards per contest through the air overall (73 per game against conference opposition) and has five passing TDs so far. The Fighting Illini have recorded 168.1 pass yards per contest (125 in the Big 10) and have 13 total pass scores.

Rutgers has allowed opponents to run for an average of 198.4 yards and pass for 246.6 yards per game. The Illinois D has given up 224.5 yards per game to opposing passers and 187.8 yards per game on the ground. The Fighting Illini are giving up an adjusted net yards per pass attempt (ANY/A) of 6.74 to opponents, while the Scarlet Knights have allowed a 7.71 ANY/A.

Offensively, Langan has put up 364 passing yards this season. The signal-caller has completed 57 percent of his 60 attempts with two scores through the air and two interceptions. Langan’s got a 3.60 adjusted net yards per pass attempt, including 2.93 over the last two outings.

Brandon Peters has completed 77-of-133 passes for 823 yards, 10 TDs and four INTs for Illinois. His ANY/A stands at 5.21 for the season and 6.00 over his past two outings.

Rutgers Scarlet Knights at Illinois Fighting Illini Free Prediction

SU Winner: Illinois, ATS Winner: Rutgers, O/U: Under

Team Betting Trends

  • The Illinois offense has lost six fumbles this season while Rutgers has let four get away.
  • The Illinois D has registered more than twice as many sacks as Rutgers this season (19 to nine).
  • Rutgers, as a team, has produced 3.8 yards per carry over its past three outings and 4.3 over its last two.
  • Illinois has averaged 3.4 yards per carry over its last three contests and 4.4 over its past two.
  • In its last three matches, Illinois is 3-0 ATS and the under cashed in two of those three.
  • The O/U for Rutgers’ previous game was set at 44. The over cashed in the team’s 44-34 win over Liberty.
  • Over its last three contests, Rutgers is 1-2 ATS and the over cashed in two of those three.
  • The Over/Under for Illinois’ last game going into it was 54.5. The under cashed in that 24-6 victory over Purdue.