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Tennessee vs. Purdue prediction and pick for this week's Music City Bowl showdown between the two teams. Purdue is missing some key players, but can they keep it close? Jason Radowitz gives his pick

Tennessee vs. Purdue Prediction, Pick Against The Spread, and Latest Odds

Tennessee Volunteers vs. Purdue Boilermakers - Music City Bowl

Spread: Tennessee -5.5

Total: 63.5

Date: Thursday, December 30, 2021

Game Time: 3:00 p.m. ET

Where To Watch: ESPN

Tennessee vs. Purdue odds

Tennessee vs. Purdue Prediction

The Tennessee Volunteers will take on the Purdue Boilermakers in the Music City Bowl on December 30 in Nissan Stadium. Nissan Stadium is in Nashville, Tennessee, which is part of the reason why the Volunteers are favorites against Purdue in this game.

The Volunteers finished 7-5 on the year and actually surprised many this season with 38.8 points per game. The Volunteers weren’t used to scoring a whole lot of points but transfer quarterback Hendon Hooker was just fantastic for Tennessee this season to lead them into a bowl game.

Now Hooker and Tennessee will take on a Purdue team that has knocked off a bunch of top 10 opponents this season on their way to an 8-4 record. Purdue’s defense was the difference-maker this season.

Can Purdue’s defense step up against a tough Tennessee offense? Here are our picks and predictions for the Music City Bowl between the Tennessee Volunteers and the Purdue Boilermakers.

Tennessee vs. Purdue INJURY REPORT


Questionable: QB Hendon Hooker (Hand)


Out: WR David Bell (NFL Draft Prep), DE George Karlaftis (NFL Draft Prep)

Tennessee vs Purdue Prediction

Right off the bat, Purdue will be without David Bell, who has chosen to prepare for the NFL Draft instead of playing in the Music City Bowl. Bell caught 93 receptions for 1286 yards and six touchdowns.

He’s not just a nobody. He’s going to be really missed in Purdue’s offense as Purdue really relied heavily on him at times.

The defense, on the other hand, has always been a mess. While Purdue has allowed just 20.5 points per game and 341.5 yards per game, there are ways to beat them. Purdue allowed 146.9 yards per game on the ground this season. Many teams found success rushing the football and Tennessee will more than likely do the same.

The Boilermakers also struggled to get stops in the secondary, despite allowing 194.6 yards per game in the air. It was the pass rush that helped beat the passing game on defense.

The Volunteers gained 212 yards per game on the ground on the offensive end and should have no problems gaining a large number of yards in this one against Purdue. The offensive line hasn’t been great but the play from Hooker has been. If he’s able to get the ball out of his hands quickly, he’ll beat the secondary up in this one.

And while Tennessee has allowed over 400 yards of offense per game, the Volunteers haven’t been that bad on the defensive end. There’s nothing elite about that Tennessee defense but against the run, in the pass rush, as a secondary, it’s an above-average unit that will perform against Purdue, especially with the Boilermakers playing without Bell.

Give me Tennessee -5 in this one with the game being played in Tennessee.

Tennessee Volunteers vs Purdue Boilermakers Pick

  • PICK: Tennessee -5 (-110)

Article Author


Jason grew up an avid sports fan. His passion for sports writing grew in high school and he developed a blog that was strictly for New York Sports. From his work, you will quickly realize that he loves looking at games from an analytical and numbers perspective and hopes to provide you with that same perspective in his articles.


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