Penn State vs. Georgia Bowl Pick
A defensive struggle should breakout today at EverBank Field in Jacksonville, Florida when Penn State takes on Georgia in the TaxSlayer Bowl at 12:00PM ET.
Oddsmakers from online sports book Mybookie.ag currently list the Bulldogs as 6-point favorites over the Nittany Lions after Georgia opened as a 7-point favorite. As for the total, the number opened at 41.5 but has climbed to 43.
Penn State is 7-5 on the year but just 4-8 against the spread, while Georgia is 9-3 overall and 5-7 at the betting window. Of the wagers currently placed on today's matchup, 60% of college football public bettors are currently backing the Bulldogs -6.
There's some value in taking the points with Penn State because you don't know how motivated Georgia is going to be playing in a small bowl in Jacksonville, or how prepared they'll be after the program fired head coach Mark Richt. But with the dominance that SEC teams have shown this bowl season, it's also a risk backing the Nittany Lions when there will likely be a disparity in speed and overall talent.
But one thing is for sure: Both offenses should struggle. PSU ranked 106th and 114th in total offense the past two seasons and fired offensive coordinator John Donovan in the process. New OC Joe Moorhead will not take over until after the bowl game, which means quarterbacks coach Ricky Rahne will be forced to put together a game plan against Georgia's stout defense (16.9 points per game/9th in the country).
The Bulldogs have also struggled offensively after losing Nick Chubb. Quarterback play has been an issue all season and it doesn't figure to get better today versus a Penn State defense that leads the nation in sacks and finished 14th in total defense while surrendering 324.3 yards per game. The majority of the bowl games this season are flying over the total, but this should be one that stays under.
TAXSLAYER BOWL FREE PICK: PENN STATE/GEORGIA UNDER 43