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Betting Preview: Pittsburgh Panthers vs Penn State Nittany Lions

The Penn State Nittany Lions have done exactly what they’ve needed to do despite facing a pair of weaker opponents to open the season. And while things get a little more challenging Saturday against visiting Pittsburgh, the Nittany Lions are well-positioned to improve to 3-0 with everything humming on both ends of the football.

Pittsburgh Panthers vs Penn State Nittany Lions (Matchup Report)
Date/Time: September 14, 12 noon ET
TV Coverage: ABC
Opening Odds: Penn State -17.5 | O/U 48.5 (Line History)

Opening Odds Analysis

This game opened with Penn State favored by 17.5 points; if it gets bet up past -19, it’ll represent the largest spread between the teams since 1999.

Pittsburgh News & Notes

When the Panthers are on the road, the UNDER is the smart play. Pittsburgh has been a totals force in away games of late, finishing below the total in five straight and 10 of its previous 11. And unfortunately, the Panthers’ anemic offense has been the catalyst for the most part, with the visitors scoring fewer than 20 points six times over that span.

If Pittsburgh is going to generate enough offense to make this one even remotely competitive, it will need to get the Davises going. A.J. Davis and Vincent Davis have combined for 170 rushing yards and a pair of touchdowns on 35 carries over the first two games, but will be in tough against a Penn State defense limiting opponents to a minuscule 2.19 yards per carry.

Penn State News & Notes

Well, the Nittany Lions have certainly had no problems scoring points: They hung 79 on the poor Idaho Vandals in Week 1, then crunched the Buffalo Bulls by 32 points last weekend. Penn State is averaging 515 yards of total offense per game and has scored a whopping 15 touchdowns, with nine different players finding the end zone through the first two weeks.

Bettors are probably happy to see the Nittany Lions continue their homestand, as well. Penn State comes in having covered in seven of its previous eight games at Beaver Stadium, with three of those covers coming by 15-plus points. The Lions are also 4-2 ATS in their previous six games overall as a fave of 14-plus points.

Betting Pick: Pittsburgh UNDER team points scored

Penn State can do no wrong, while the Panthers played some uninspired football in splitting their first two games at home. With the Nittany Lions run defense looking sensational and Pittsburgh traditionally struggling to score on the road, we favor the Panthers to finish below their team total.

Shark Bites
  • Pittsburgh is 1-6-1 ATS in its last 8 games vs the Big Ten.
  • Penn State is 13-3-1 ATS in its last 17 following a SU win of more than 20 points.
  • Pittsburgh is 0-3 SU in its last 3 games on the road vs Penn State (avg. losing margin: 13.0).