Russell Athletic Bowl Free Pick
Bettors are pounding North Carolina at the betting window ahead of today’s Russell Athletic Bowl at 5:30PM ET, but is Baylor the play as an underdog?
Our College Football Public Betting page shows that over 70% of wagers are on the Tar Heels to cover today versus the Bears. That amount of public action has helped the point spread jump the fence, going from Baylor -2.5 to North Carolina -3. According to oddsmakers from online sports book Mybookie.ag, the over/under is now up to 69 points after opening at 68.5.
There is some value in taking Baylor with this much public action on UNC, but the Bears are extremely banged up. Quarterback Jarrett Stidham is doubtful with a foot injury, receiver Corey Coleman and offensive lineman Pat Colbert (labrum) are both out, and running back Shock Lindwood might not play due to an ankle injury.
The worry with the Tar Heels is motivation. They were flying high heading into the ACC championship game but lost to Clemson and is now playing a Baylor squad with massive injury concerns. Will North Carolina overlook Baylor, which has a fairly underrated defense?
While that is a concern, it’s still difficult to back a Bears team that is down to their third-string quarterback and will be without the All-American in Coleman. North Carolina averaged 40.9 points per game this season and had the 27th-ranked pass defense in the nation. If the Tar Heels are still motivated, they certainly have the talent advantage.
RUSSELL ATHLETIC BOWL FREE PICK: NORTH CAROLINA TAR HEELS -3