Maryland vs Illinois Prediction, Game Preview

Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Maryland vs Illinois Prediction, Game Preview

College Football Predictions

Maryland vs Illinois Prediction, Game Preview

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Maryland vs Illinois prediction and game preview.


Maryland vs Illinois Broadcast

Date: Friday, September 17
Game Time: 9:00 ET
Venue: Memorial Stadium, Champaign, IL
Network: FS1
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Maryland (2-0) vs Illinois (1-2) Game Preview


Why Illinois Will Win

The Illini have struggled over the last two weeks with a loss to UTSA and a 42-14 rocking from Virginia, but things haven’t totally fallen off the map.

Former Rutgers QB Artur Sitkowski stepped in for an injured Brandon Peters and has been fine. The downfield plays aren’t there, but he’s been good enough to get the job done if the rest of the parts are working.

Maryland had problems with the West Virginia passing game in the 30-24 win in the opener, and it hasn’t been pushed yet on the ground. Illinois will come out and try to bully the Terp defensive front, but …

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Why Maryland Will Win

The Illinois running has been serviceable. It hasn’t taken over games, and it’s only averaging four yards per carry – it’s not going to be a problem for a Terp defensive front that allowed 114 yards in the first two games.

The bigger issue for the Illini is a secondary that’s getting roasted. It had way too many breakdowns in the opener against Nebraska, and last week Virginia’s Brennan Armstrong threw for over 400 yards and five scores.

Taulia Tagovailoa has been fantastic so far. He hit 76% of his throws in the first two games for 606 yards and six scores with no picks. The downfield plays are there, the ground attack is working just fine, and …

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What’s Going To Happen

Now Maryland has to prove it can win on the road.

Illinois will try to turn its season around by being 2-0 in the Big Ten, but the Terps have way too much offensive pop against a secondary that’s having way too many issues and breakdowns.

Maryland won’t be perfect – and Illinois will have its moments and chances to take over – but it’ll have more offensive balance in the fourth quarter to get to 3-0.

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Maryland vs Illinois Prediction, Line

Maryland 36, Illinois 27
Line: Maryland -7, o/u: 60.5
ATS Confidence out of 5: 2

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Must See Rating: 2.5

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