NCAAF Week 2 Virginia at Illinois Betting Preview

Virginia at Illinois

DFS players should give Virginia QB Brennan Armstrong some considerations on Saturday as he heads into a rematch with an Illinois team he exploited for 405 yards and 5TD passes a season ago as UVA picked up a 42-14 win as -10.5 favorites.

Last year’s meeting was in Charlottesville however, and UVA has completely swapped their coaching staff in the offseason. The Cavaliers won their opener 34-17 over Richmond but failed to cover the -21 point spread. The Illini are -3.5 favorites in the Virginia at Illinois rematch.

Armstrong Ready to Torch?

Virginia moved on from six season of Bronco Mendenhall when he decided to step down last offseason to spend more time with his family. The 55-year-old seemingly had a lot of coaching left to do and he had success with the Cavaliers making them bowl eligible in four of his six years at the helm.

The Tony Elliott era is off to a decent start for Virginia with the team’s 34-17 win over Richmond last week. Elliott’s first real victory though was convincing Armstrong to return to the team after throwing for 4,449 yards with 31 TDs against 10 INT last season. Armstrong is off to a solid start in 2022, going 21/33 for 246 yards and 2 TDs against Richmond while adding 105 yards and another score on the ground – including a 64-yard TD run.

65% of public bettors like UVA getting the points in the Virginia at Illinois matchup, which makes sense after last year’s 42-14 win by the Cavaliers. Virginia racked up 556 yards of total offense in that matchup so how much as the Illinois defense really improved in the offseason?

Illini Look for Revenge

This year’s Illinois squad is a lot different than the one that was manhandled by Virginia last season in Bret Bielema’s third game at the helm in Champaign. The Fighting Illini showed improvement over the second half of Bielema’s first year as head coach, beating #7 Penn State in 9OT, taking down #20 Minnesota, and beating Nortwestern in a rivalry game.

2022 started off well for the Illini as they beat Wyoming 38-6 to cover the -14 point spread, but Illinois lost their Big Ten opener 23-20 at Indiana last Friday night. Illinois would have liked to come into Saturday’s game 2-0 and they had their chances, but on the bright side Chase Brown has looked like an absolute stud with 150+ yards rushing in each of his first two games.

Brown had 41 yards and a TD on just 7 carries against UVA last season, so Illinois’ main goal is to keep this game close so that the run game can remain an option. QB Tommy DeVito has multiple TD passes in each of his first two games with the Illini so maybe IU has more firepower to contend in this year’s game if Armstrong does indeed go off again for the Cavaliers.

Free Virginia at Illinois Betting Pick

Armstrong had a solid start to the season and has faced this Illinois defense before with great results. Oddsmakers might have the wrong team favored here as the Illini proved they are the same old team in last week’s loss to Indiana.

Free Pick: Virginia +3.5

 

Author: Max Hunt