College Football Picks Against the Spread: Notre Dame Fighting Irish at Purdue Boilermakers

Notre Dame Fighting Irish at Purdue Boilermakers
Saturday, 10/1/11, 8:00 PM EST, TV:  ESPN
Opening Point Spread:  Notre Dame -13
Current Betting Line:  Notre Dame -12
Opening Total:  47
Current Total:  48
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

The Notre Dame Fighting Irish are 4-14 ATS as a favorite

Notre Dame has evened its record at 2-2 after picking up a 15-12 win over the Pittsburgh Panthers as seven-point road favorites.  The Fighting Irish have been led by quarterback Tommy Rees, who has thrown at least one touchdown pass in the last nine games.  He overcame a rough start against the Panthers, hitting 12 of his last 14 passes, including all eight in the game winning 85-yard drive.  The Fighting Irish have been plagued by turnovers all year, adding two more last week, tied for last in the country with Tulsa.  Notre Dame is 4-14 ATS as a favorite and 2-5 ATS in October over the last two-plus seasons.

The Fighting Irish lead this series by a 54-26-2 count, including wins in 20 of the last 25 meetings.  Notre Dame has captured eight of the last 12 games in the series inside Ross-Ade Stadium.  The program has tallied a 373-91-8 all-time record during the month of October, winning seven of the last nine such games on the road.  Second-year head coach Brian Kelly seems to have the team headed in the right direction, especially considering he has the sixth-most wins of any active coach in the country since the 2006 season.

Purdue will host Notre Dame under the lights for just the third time in the series and is coming off its first shutout of an opponent since 2004.  The Boilermakers have a very balanced offense, averaging 258.7 passing yards and 212.3 rushing yards per game.  The team has been playing with a quarterback tandem, as Caleb TerBush and Robert Marve teamed up to complete 21 of 25 passes in their last game.  Purdue is 4-2 ATS as an underdog of 10.5 to 21 points and 6-8 ATS at home.

The Boilermakers are just 16-17 in 33 all-time night games inside Ross-Ade Stadium and will look to continue to punish opponents on the ground.  Purdue gained 393 rushing yards last week in a win over Southeast Missouri.  The team has done a relatively good job of avoiding injury this year, even though it lost projected starting quarterback Rob Henry during the offseason.  Purdue was ravaged by injuries a year ago, losing 76 combined games from notable players.  Offensively, the team hasn’t had many drives that were short in distance, as 11 of the 13 end-zone ending drives have been 50 or more yards.

Bettors will likely back the Boilermakers due to their 3-1-1 ATS mark as a home underdog, while the Irish are 1-5 ATS as a road favorite.

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