All eyes will be on Happy Valley as undefeated Michigan takes the trip to face Penn State in a battle of two teams with Big Ten title aspirations.
The Michigan passing game is in line for a big day against Penn State's secondary, and I'm targeting both J.J. McCarthy and tight end Colston Loveland. Meanwhile, can Drew Allar put together a strong performance after struggling in his first marquee outing against Ohio State about a month ago.
Here are my three favorite player prop plays for this massive matchup. You can get our against the spread pick here, but let's dig into the props for Saturday's matchup.
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Best College Football Prop Bets for Michigan vs. Penn State in Week 11
- J.J. McCarthy OVER 234.5 Passing Yards
- Colston Loveland OVER 35.5 Receiving Yards
- Drew Allar UNDER 193.5 Passing Yards
J.J. McCarthy OVER 234.5 Passing Yards
As noted in our early week deep dive, this is shaping up to be a big outing for Michigan's passing game a vulnerable Penn State secondary.
Penn State's coverage grade over the balance of the season rates this group as a top 25 group, but when you zoom in on the four times it's played a national average or better passing game in terms of EPA/Play, the team's numbers are far worse. Against West Virginia, Ohio State, Indiana, and Maryland, the Nittany Lions have a coverage grade of about 61, which would put them outside the top 125 when scaled out across the entire season.
Against a vulnerable secondary, I expect McCarthy to continue to cook. The 6'3" signal-caller has made serious strides as a downfield passer this season as well. He has thrown more than 37% of his passes further than 10 yards down the field and is completing 66% of those passes with 19 big-time throws to three turnover-worthy plays according to Pro Football Focus.
This number is being anchored in McCarthy's low output, but it's worth noting that the Michigan quarterback has only passed the ball eight times in the fourth quarter this season. With a four quarters, I expect McCarthy to clear this with ease.
Colston Loveland OVER 35.5 Receiving Yards
As Michigan continues to ramp its offense this season, Loveland continues to play more of a role, tallying 55 or more yards over his last three games with at least three catches. It's worth noting that the last time Penn State faced an elite offense in Ohio State, tight end Cade Stover played a big role, catching four passes for 70 yards.
As a believer in this Michigan passing game, I'm going to target Loveland as my pass catcher to clear his prop.
Drew Allar UNDER 193.5 Passing Yards
Consider me still not sold on Drew Allar and this Penn State passing game.
Allar continues to not be a threat to push the ball down the field, averaging less than seven yards per pass attempt with only nine big-time throws. Overall, about 30% of Allar's throws have been more than 10 yards down the field and he's completing 47% of those passes.
Michigan's secondary is relentless and allowing the fifth lowest completion percentage in college football this season (52.7%) and the Nittany Lions inability to generate explosive plays is going to cost them this game and Allar's prop. PSU is bottom 10 in the country in explosive play rate and against a disciplined unit I expect plenty of three-and-outs, supressing Allar's passing prop.
Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.
Track Reed's bets here!