Maryland vs Illinois Picks and Predictions: Terps Must Prove Themselves on Big Stage

The Terps have been hot to start the season, but now they must prove they can handle a large spread, on the road, in the spotlight of a national TV appearance. Find out if they have the right stuff as we break down our Maryland vs Illinois picks.

Chris Euksuzian
Sep 16, 2021 • 10:15 ET • 4 min read
Artur Sitkowski Illinois fighting Illini college football
Photo By - USA TODAY Sports

The Maryland Terrapins could not have asked for a better start to their college season and are ready for Big Ten play as they go to Champagne and take on the Illinois Fighting Illini.

Illinois has already had highs and lows to start this season. Brett Bielema needs to make sure to get his team refocused after losing two straight games. 

Can the Illini come up with a solid game plan to slow down this high-power attack?

Find out with our free college football betting picks and predictions for Eastern Maryland vs. Illinois on Friday, September 17.

Maryland vs Illinois odds

Odds via the Covers Line, an average comprised of odds from multiple sportsbooks.

The line opened up at most sportsbooks Illinois +7.5. At the time of writing, the line has stayed at +7.5. The total opened up at 59.5 and the line has moved up to 60.5 at most books.

Use the live odds widget above to track any future line movements right up until kickoff and be sure to check out the full college football odds before placing your bets.

Maryland vs Illinois picks

Picks made on 9/15/2021 at 10:55 p.m. ET.
Click on each pick to jump to the full analysis.

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Maryland vs Illinois game info

Location: Memorial Stadium, Champaign, IL
Date: Friday, September 17, 2021
Time: 9:00 p.m. ET

Maryland vs Illinois betting preview


Be sure to monitor the gametime conditions with our NCAA football weather info.

Key injuries

Maryland: Fa’Najae Gotay LB (Out)
Illinois: Marquez Beason WR (Questionable), Brandon Peters QB (Questionable), Tailon Leitzsey DB (Questionable), Mike Epstein RB (Questionable), Keith Randolph Jr. DL (Questionable), Calvin Hart Jr. LB (Out), Jordyn Slaughter OL (Out)

Find our latest NCAA football injury reports.

Betting trend to know

The Under is 4-0 for the Terrapins in their last four road games. Find more NCAA betting trends for Maryland vs. Illinois.

Maryland vs Illinois predictions

Maryland starts their Big Ten journey this year at Memorial Stadium. 

This betting line opened at +7.5 for Illinois at home due to the Terrapins’ hot start. The Fighting Illini have not helped their cause with the betting line. They‘ve done everything but put up a good fight in their last two games. 

The most recent loss to Virginia in Charlottesville has given the public an opinion that Illinois will not hang with the Maryland Terrapins. 62 percent of the public is betting on the Terrapins based on Covers Consensus.

Maryland has not had a road game yet this year. While the Terrapins have looked impressive in their last two games, their pass defense has not impressed, as they’re ranked 103rd in defensive passing yards. Artur Sitkowski of Illinois should be able to take advantage of this pass defense at home. 

Taking advantage of a poor pass defense allows Illinois to control possession and clock management. 

The Illini are getting too many points at home based on recency bias from last week. Friday night, primetime game on FS1 — I expect Brett Bielema to have his team dictate the tempo, feed off their home crowd, and keep this game closer than most people think. 

Maryland has shown that they are a force to be reckoned with at home with Taulia Tagovailoa. However, every team has to prove that they can produce at home and on the road. The Terrapins get their shot on Friday night. 

Maryland has not fared well in Friday games when it comes to the Over. The Under is 5-1 for the Terps in their last six Friday games and 6-1 in their last seven conference games. 

Illinois is coming off an embarrassing loss. The Fighting Illini have recently favored the Under in their next game when giving up over 40 points in their previous game. The Under is 5-0-1 in their last six such games.

Illinois wants to make sure that they keep the ball out of Taulia's hands as much as possible if they have any shot of not getting humiliated on national television. With this mindset, the Under is the play.

NCAA parlays

Did you know that if you parlayed our Maryland vs. Illinois picks, you could win $26.45 on a $10 bet?

Use our college football parlay calculator to create your own parlays and see their potential payouts.

Where can I bet on college football odds?

You can bet on college football odds at every online and casino sportsbook, including NCAA moneylines, spreads, Over/Under totals, and a ton of college football prop odds. Head over to our best football betting sites for the top spots to bet on college football odds in your area.

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