This is what I believe is the first Wednesday night college football game of the year. Wednesday nights are typically reserved for MAC and Sun Belt football, so don’t get too excited, but there are going to be opportunities to make money and that’s all that matters. In the first edition of Wednesday night football, the Georgia Southern Eagles take on the Arkansas State Red Wolves. It’s either college football or the National League Wild Card Game tonight, if you want to bet on sports. I’m going to take a look at this college football Sun Belt matchup in Arkansas.
The Red Wolves come into Week 6 of the college football schedule, with an abysmal record of 0-4. Arkansas State is still searching for their first win of the season. In their defence, they started the season off with a couple of difficult opponents, Toledo and Auburn. They have no excuse for losing to Central Arkansas last week, though. The Red Wolves were -16.5 favorites there, but lost straight up by a score of 28-23. Lines makers took a swing and missed on that one. Arkansas State will try and regroup at home tonight, this time as home underdogs.
Georgia Southern had a very good 2015, capped off by a blowout of Bowling Green in their bowl game. The Eagles finished 9-3, with losses coming against Georgia State, West Virginia, and Georgia. They nearly knocked Georgia off, but fell in overtime on the road. Georgia State was a bad loss, but otherwise, it was a successful season for them.
Georgia Southern has not looked as dominant in 2016, but they still are holding up a quality record of 3-1 entering Wednesday night. The Eagles will attempt to smother Arkansas State tonight with their superb version of the triple-option. If you can’t defend the run, it’s going to make for an excursion trying to slow them down. Find out what I think of this one below, including my college football pick for Wednesday night.
Georgia Southern Eagles vs. Arkansas State Red Wolves NCAAF Betting Odds:
Georgia Southern -7(-110)
vs. Arkansas State +7(-110)
Odds provided by Bovada.lv
Georgia Southern vs. Arkansas State Pick:
Georgia Southern leans on the run all game long. The trick to beating Georgia Southern is to get ahead early. It severely limits their ability to comeback, considering they’re going to need to do it by running the ball. The Eagles are good at mixing in the pass, more so than other triple-option offenses, but when it comes down to it they aren’t going to go down the field dinking and dunking with the pass.
Western Michigan made sure to leave no doubts a week ago, pouring it on with 49 points in a 49-31 loss for Georgia Southern. The Eagles rely on two quarterbacks, Favian Upshaw and Kevin Ellison. Combined they threw for 3 touchdowns a week ago, along with 168 yards. So like I said, there is a passing element to their offense that defenses must prepare for.
The meat of their offensive attack is certainly on the ground, though. Note that the Eagles are 4th in country in rushing, and last season they were 1st in all of college football. So while they haven’t been on last year’s level, they are still the 4th best rushing team in college football, and they haven’t played at their best yet.
Georgia Southern may look at their best tonight. This is a total mismatch for Arkansas State. I think the popular thing to do in this game is to take the home dog. In most cases, taking a home dog is a profitable move. I fail to understand how Arkansas State is going to slow their rushing game down, though. Note that Arkansas State are allowing 240 rushing yards per game.
That equates to the Red Wolves being 99th in the nation defending the run. Georgia Southern is a team that averaged well over 40 points per game in 2015, we haven’t seen that explosiveness yet, but I expect a nice showing for them tonight. I also see the Eagles’ defense responding after they got pummeled by Western Michigan last week. I am going to lay the points with Georgia Southern in this midweek matchup on Wednesday night.