Wyoming at Illinois (4:00 pm est)
Line: Illinois -14
This is the first meeting between these two teams but when Wyoming has ventured to play the Big Ten, it has not been historically good. Wyoming is 1-19 all time vs the Big Ten and while they haven’t played the Big Ten since 2017 and the team is completely different, it goes to show you the athletes they have do not compare to the Athletes the Big Ten gets.
Illinois has a very good defense returning and that spells disaster for a Wyoming offense that still hasn’t named a starting QB (as of this writing). In fact, they only have 1 QB on their roster with actual game experience and that is the Utah State transfer, Andrew Peasley. Last year, Wyoming was not a good offensive team as they only ranked 8th in the Mountain West Conference and 100th nationally in terms of scoring. Going on the road against a Power 5 team with a solid defense is not a recipe for success and we feel Wyoming will struggle to score.
As far as the Illinois offense goes, they have questions surrounding the QB position as well however, they return a solid ground game that will surely take pressure off Tommy Devito. Devito had a decent career at Syracuse over the past 4 seasons and certainly has experience, but we wouldn’t put him in the upper echelon of Big Ten QB’s.
We mentioned the Illinois rushing attack as they bring back all 3 of their top backs from last year when they averaged just under 174 yards per game. This means something because while Wyoming wasn’t bad defensively last year, they did struggle against the run, and we believe Illinois will exploit that.
Last year, Illinois opened their season in Week 0 with an upset win at home against Nebraska as they beat the Cornhuskers by 8. This program generally opens with success as they are 10-2 in their last 12 season opening games. It’s a big price but we expect Illinois to win this game by 3 touchdowns so we will lay the price and take the home favorite.
1* College Football Free Pick is Illinois -14.
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