Penn State Nittany Lions @ Illinois Fighting Illini 9/16/23 Free Pick, NCAAF Odds, NCAAF Predictions

#7 Penn State Nittany Lions (2-0) at Illinois Fighting Illini (1-1)

Game Info: Saturday, September 16th, 2023 at  12:00 p.m. EST (Memorial Stadium)

Betting Odds: Penn State -14.5 (-115) - Over/Under (48.5)

Pick: Penn State -14.5 (-115)

On Saturday afternoon the number seven team in the country, Penn State heads to Champaign to take on the Illinois Fighting Illini in the opening game of their Big Ten conference schedule. This will be a solid measuring stick game for both of these teams as they are being tested by conference competition for the first time this season. Both teams will be looking to start their conference season out on the right foot as they both look to take the first step on their journey towards the Big Ten championship game later this season. 

The Penn State Nittany Lions look like a legitimate contender this season, and they come into the third game of the year ranked number seven in the country. Brand new quarterback Drew Aller is looking like an absolute superstar, as has not been stopped throughout the first two weeks of the season. They will be looking to keep the momentum rolling in their conference opener on the road in Illinois as they look to start the season with three consecutive victories, and further establish themselves as a potential college football playoff contender this season. 

Penn State is having a fantastic season so far this year and they will be looking to pick up their third consecutive victory of the season. They opening up the season with a pair of victories over West Virginia and FCS school Delaware, they currently have an average margin of victory of thirty nine and a half points through their first two games of the season. Drew Allar is emerging as a potential Heisman Trophy winning candidate if he can continue to perform at the level that he has throughout the first two games of the season. Meanwhile starting running back Nick Singleton will be looking to add to his stats after his massive performance last weekend as well, as Penn State looks to grab the victory over Illinois here on Saturday afternoon on the road. 

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The Illinois Fighting Illini will be looking to pull off a massive upset on Saturday afternoon at home when they welcome in the number seven team in the country. They will have to play a near perfect game here at home against Penn State if they want to pull off the upset against the Nittany Lions, and establish themselves as a potential contender in the Big Ten West division this season. Illinois will have to find a way to shut down both Nick Singleton and Drew Aller, as Penn State’s offense has been running rampant over the first two weeks of the season and they have been the key to the success for the Nittany Lions so far this year. 

If Illinois could either limit the damage or shut them down completely, and put them in a great position to pull off an upset of the Nittany Lions here on Saturday afternoon at home. Their offense will have to find a way to click on all cylinders and they won’t be able to afford to turn the ball over or settle for field goals throughout this game if they want to pick up a victory. They will also have to find a way to control the time of possession and keep Penn State's star studded offense off of the field here on Saturday as well. If they can manage to manufacture turnovers, they can find themselves in a great position to win this game on Saturday at home. 

Betting trends to consider in this matchup:

- Penn State leads the all time series 20-6

- Penn State has won 3 out of the last 4 

- Penn State won by 39 last time they play at Illinois

I look for Penn State to win this game and win this game because I look for them to blow out Illinois and cover the spread in the process here on Saturday on the road in Champaign. As I look for Nick Singleton and Drew Aller to lead Penn State to a massive victory here on Saturday to pick up their third consecutive victory of the season as well as their first Big Ten Conference victory of the season.

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