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College Football Picks for Week 6 – Purdue & Arkansas Among Top Underdog Plays

Jack Magruder

by Jack Magruder in College Football

Updated Nov 18, 2022 · 8:02 AM PST

Purdue Boilermakers quarterback Aidan O'Connell throws a pass
Sep 10, 2022; West Lafayette, Indiana, USA; Purdue Boilermakers quarterback Aidan O'Connell (16) throws a pass during the second quarter against the Indiana State Sycamores at Ross-Ade Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Goddin-USA TODAY Sports
  • Purdue is a strong underdog play in a Big Ten game at Maryland
  • No. 25 LSU and Arkansas are poised for SEC upsets in their matchups
  • Read below for betting odds, analysis and college football picks for Week 6

Another weekend, another chance to bring some favorites down to earth. Quarterbacks Aidan O’Connell and Taulia Tagovailoa faceoff in a game featuring two of the Big Ten’s best signal-callers when Purdue (3-2, 1-1) visits Maryland (4-1, 1-1).

No. 25 LSU (4-1, 2-0) takes a four-game winning streak into an SEC home game against No. 8 Tennessee (4-0, 1-0), and Arkansas (3-2, 1-2) looks to break a two-game losing streak at No. 23 Mississippi State (4-1, 1-1).

Let’s dive into my three best top college football picks at plus-money value for Week 6.

Purdue vs Maryland Odds

Team Spread Moneyline Total
Purdue Boilermakers +3.5 (-113) +135 Over 59.5 (-109)
Maryland Terrapins -3.5 (-108) -177 Under 58.5 (-112)

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Pick No. 1: Purdue over Maryland

A 20-10 victory over Minnesota last week made Purdue the Big Ten West favorite in the latest conference title odds, and quarterback Aidan O’Connell as close to full strength as he has been since suffering an apparent rib injury in the first quarter of 32-29 loss to Syracuse on Sept. 17.

Sixth-year senior O’Connell, a game-time decision the last two weeks, sat out a 28-26 victory over Florida Atlantic on Sept 24. He was 27-of-40 for 199 yards against the Gophers but was still bothered, throwing two interceptions.

The Boilermakers, who rank No. 26 in NCAA Division I in total defense, limited Minnesota to 304 yards and 47 yards rushing,  benefiting from the absence of running back Mohamed Ibrahim. The Terps are 84th in total defense. Tagovailoa ranks No. 2 in Division I in completion percentage at 75.5 percent and O’Connell is 14th in passing yards per game at 299.8.

Both teams will score, but this game will turn on the little things. Maryland has been sloppy — it has a minus-3 turnover ratio and has been penalized 41 times for 352 yards. Purdue has a plus-1 turnover ratio. Purdue won the last meeting 40-14 at home as a 4-point dog in 2019.

Safety Jalen Graham, considered the Boilers’ best defensive player, is expected to play after missing the previous four with a fractured tibia suffered in a 35-31 loss to Penn State.  No. 1 halfback King Doerue is doubtful with a calf injury, but Dylan Downing and Devin Mockobee have had 100-yard games in his absence.

  • Pick: Purdue ML (+135, 2 units)

Arkansas vs Mississippi State Odds

Team Spread Moneyline Total
Arkansas Razorbacks +9 (-112) +275 Over 57.5 (-112)
Mississippi State Bulldogs -9 (-110) -360 Under 57.5 (-110)

Pick No. 2: Arkansas over Mississippi State

Arkansas will get well here after consecutive losses to Texas A&M and Alabama, although make sure to check the status of Hogs’ quarterback KJ Jefferson, who practiced for the first time Wednesday after being knocked out of the Alabama game with a head injury.

Reserve quarterback Cade Fortin, considered more of a passer than then 2021 backup Malik Hornsby, entered after Jefferson left against Alabama. Either way, the Porkers will work the ground game against a Mississippi State defense that is giving up 4.2 yards per carry. Arkansas rolled up 244 yards rushing against the Aggies and had another 187 against Alabama.

Bulldogs quarterback Will Rogers blew up against A&M last week, throwing for 329 yards and three touchdowns in a 42-24 victory over A&M, but the Razorbacks will be able to keep the Air Raid offense off the field long enough to matter.

  • Pick: Arkansas ML (+250, 1 unit)

Tennessee vs LSU Odds

Team Spread Moneyline Total
Tennessee Volunteers -3 (-109) -155 Over 65 (-109)
LSU Tigers +3 (-112) +123 Under 65 (-112)

Pick No. 3: LSU Over Tennessee

LSU is a blocked extra point and successful overtime away from being undefeated in Brian Kelly’s first season. Arizona State transfer quarterback Jayden Daniels has been reborn in the bayou, combining for 1,236 passing/rushing yards and nine touchdowns without an interception.

Tennessee leads Division I in total offense averaging 559 yards per game, but routs of Mid-American foes Ball State and Akron have ballooned that number. The Tigers are equipped to handle the Hendon Hooker-led group with a defense that ranks 19th in total defense.

The Volunteers are 94th in total defense, giving up an average of 407 yards per game. Only 11 Power 5 teams have given up more, but Hooker has kept them unbeaten as his Heisman Trophy odds shorten.

  • Pick: LSU ML (+123, 2 units)
  • Last week: 1-2 SU, 2-1 ATS.  Season upsets: 7-14 SU, 12-9 ATS
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