The top Thursday night (8:00pm ET) game for week 11 of the 2011 college football season features an ACC matchup with the 10th ranked Virginia Tech Hokies (8-1) traveling to Atlanta, GA to take on the 20th ranked Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (7-2) in primetime. The Hokies have won four straight games coming into this one, but eked out a 14-10 win on the road against a week Duke team their last time out and failed to cover the 14.5 point line. Georgia Tech had lost two straight before defeating ACC-rival Clemson 31-17 last week at home to cover the 3.5 point line. Virginia Tech is 2-7 ATS this season while Georgia Tech is 5-3-1 ATS so far in 2011.
The Hokies offense has been a running-based attack this season with tailback David Wilson leading them to an average of 200.2 yards per game rushing (26th among FBS teams) and an average of 29.1 points per game (52nd in the nation). The defense for Head Coach Frank Beamer has been stellar, ranking 6th in the nation in points allowed with 15.4 per game and 12th in total defense with an average of 298.3 YPG allowed. Georgia Tech Head Coach Paul Johnson favors an old-school triple-option attack on offense that ranks second in the nation in rushing with an average of 328 YPG. The Yellow Jackets have scored a ton of points despite their heavy reliance on the run, averaging 37.2 points per contest. The Georgia Tech defense has been stingy against the pass, ranking 16th among FBS teams with 185 YPG allowed and allowing an average of 23.3 PPG (46th in the nation).
Virginia Tech vs. Georgia Tech Spread, Line and Betting Odds:
Virginia Tech Hokies -1
@Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets +1
Over 49 (-110)
Under 49 (-110)
Betting odds taken from BetOnline.com
Virginia Tech vs. Georgia Tech Pick:
Virginia Tech is 1-7 ATS in their last 8 games overall and 1-7 ATS in their last 8 games as a favorite. Georgia Tech is 1-3-1 ATS in their last 5 games overall and 4-1 ATS in their last 5 home games. The under is 11-4-1 in the Hokies’ last 16 games overall and 7-3-1 in their last 11 ACC games. The under is 4-0 in Georgia Tech’s last 4 ACC games and 1-4-1 in their last 15 games against a team with a winning record. In head-to-head play, the under is 4-0 in the teams’ last 4 meetings and the underdog is 5-0 ATS in their last 5 meetings. Virginia Tech has won 3 of the last 4 meetings straight up, including last season by a score of 28-21 at home when they did not cover the 13 point line.
With both teams featuring run-oriented offenses and rugged defenses that do not give up the big play this should be a low-scoring game. Georgia Tech has shown an explosive offense this season, but they will be tested by a Hokie defense that only allows 86.3 YPG on the ground. Virginia Tech will also find yards hard to come by against the Yellow Jackets and the trend for both teams, and in the series strongly favors the under. The point spread is low enough that this game might a swell be a pick-em game, and the two teams are so evenly matched that it could be anyone’s game. The under is the strong play here with “Beamer Ball” in play as the game could well be decided on special teams as the Hokie coach has a propensity to pull out trick plays, kick blocks, fake punts and the like in big games such as this one where points could be at a premium. Take the under as the safe play here.
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