The 9.5-point underdog Illinois Fighting Illini storm into Chapel Hill to face the North Carolina Tar Heels in college football week 3 betting action. The game kicks off on ABC this Saturday, Sept 19th at 12:00 PM ET. Cord-cutters can stream the game via Watch ESPN.
A Closer Look At My Illinois Fighting Illini Vs North Carolina Tar Heels Final Score Prediction
What: Illinois Fighting Illini (2-0) at North Carolina Tar Heels (1-1)
When: Saturday, Sept 19th, 2015
Kickoff: 12:00 p.m. ET
Where: Chapel Hill, NC
Stadium: Kenan Stadium
Weather: 83°F/ More Sun Than Clouds
Wind: Southeast 4mph
Spread: North Carolina -9.5
Moneyline: Illinois +315 vs North Carolina -380
Game Total: 63.5
Watch: ABC/ESPN/ESPN 2
Stream: Watch ESPN
Listen: Illinois Vs North Carolina
The Illinois Fighting Illini (2-0 SU,2-0 ATS) throttled Western Illinois 44-0 in its Week 2 mismatch as quarterback Wes Lunt completed 33 of 46 passes for 316 yards with one touchdown and one interception while backup Chayce Crouch completed 5 of 8 pass attempts for an additional score in a cameo appearance in the blowout.
The North Carolina Tar Heels (1-1 SU, 1-1 ATS) bounced back from their season-opening loss against South Carolina by pounding the snot out of tiny North Carolina A&T as quarterback Marquise Williams completed 15 of 20 passes for 211 yards with two touchdowns and one rushing score while running back Elijah Hood rushed 16 times for 56 yards and two scores.
Betting Trends Related To This Matchup:
- North Carolina Tar Heels 2-3 At Home since last season
- North Carolina Tar Heels 1-3 As Favorite since last season
- Illinois Fighting Illini 1-0 When Line was 61.5 to 65.5 since last season
- North Carolina Tar Heels 1-2 As Home Favorite since last season
- North Carolina Tar Heels 2-3 O-U At Home since last season
- North Carolina Tar Heels 5-6 O-U When Line is >60 since last season
- North Carolina Tar Heels 1-2 O-U When Line was 61.5 to 65.5 since last season
- Illinois Fighting Illini 1-4 O-U vs Teams Averaging 25 to 32 PPG since last season
- North Carolina Tar Heels 3-5 O-U vs Teams Averaging 25 to 32 PPG since last season
Betting Analysis: A narrow 51 percent of the betting public likes Illinois to cover the college football betting line as double-digit road underdogs, but I disagree, mostly because I really like Carolina defensive coordinator Gene Chizik and I believe his defensive genius has transformed the Tar Heels into one of the best defenses in the country, even if no one really recognizes that right now.
I also believe that Illinois is going to need more time to come together under interim head coach Bill Cubit after he abrupt, albeit justified, firing of former head coach Tim Beckman amidst allegations of abuse by one player.
"I’ve always done it every place I’ve been," said Cubit, promoted from offensive coordinator Friday after Tim Beckman was fired. "You go out there in a professional manner. We’re all trying to run a classy program that’s going to play hard and give everything they’ve got and represent this university the way it should be. We’ve got some tough times. I want us to be the rallying cry for this campus right now."
Last but not least, I think North Carolina quarterback Marquise Williams is far and away, the best player taking the field in this matchup and that he’s going to have another strong outing after bouncing back nicely from his error-prone season-opening performance.
North Carolina has gone 18-7 SU in its last 25 home games and a blistering 20-7 ATS in their last 27 home games against a team with a winning road record.
While the Tar Heels are 8-3 ATS in their last 11 games following an ATS win, Illinois has gone 5-13 ATS in their last 18 games following an ATS win and an awful 3-13 ATS in their last 16 road games.
I am picking the North Carolina Tar Heels to cover the 10.5-point spread as favorites over Illinois and the Under-63.5. My final score prediction is Illinois 20, UNC 31.