South Carolina Gamecocks at #7 Georgia Bulldogs
Sanford Stadium – Athens, Georgia
Saturday, September 19, 2015, 6:00 pm Eastern, TV: ESPN
Opening Line: Georgia -15
Current Line: Georgia -16 1/2
Opening Total: 55 1/2
Current Total: 53 1/2
Opening Money Line: Georgia -900 / South Carolina +600
Current Money Line: Georgia -700 / South Carolina +500
The Georgia Bulldogs and South Carolina Gamecocks renew a rivalry that dates back to 1894 Saturday in Athens. Georgia is 2-0 this season including 1-0 in the SEC. South Carolina is 1-1 including 0-1 in the SEC.
Georgia leads the series 47-18-2, including 27-8 in Athens. The Gamecocks have won four of the last five games in the series including 38-35 last year in Columbia.
South Carolina is coached by Steve Spurrier. The Gamecocks opened the season with a 17-13 win over North Carolina in Charlotte, Last week, South Carolina hosted Kentucky in the SEC opener for both schools. The Gamecocks were 7 point favorites against Kentucky and the total was 56. Still, Kentucky jumped out to a 24-7 halftime lead. South Carolina fought back and pulled to within 24-22 with 8 minutes to go in the game. The Gamecocks went for two but the Wildcats intercepted it and ran it all the way back to make it 26-22. After a Kentucky punt, South Carolina drove from their own 11 to the Kentucky 37. However, an interception with 11 seconds left ended South Carolina’s hopes of completing the comeback. Kentucky had lost 22 straight road games before Saturday. South Carolina is 1-1 ATS and the total is 0-2 this season.
Georgia is coached by Mark Richt. Georgia has a home win over UL-Monroe 51-14 in a game shortened by lightning and storms and last week at Vanderbilt 31-14. Georgia was a 17.5 point favorite against Vanderbilt and the total was 48.5. A late Vandy touchdown and two point conversion made the score 24-14 with 4:33 left. However, Georgia would score on an 88 yard pick six to win by 17, not enough for Georgia backers. The Bulldogs are 1-1 ATS and the total is 1-1 this season.
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South Carolina has scored 19.5 points a game and also given up 19.5 points per game. The Gamecocks average 406 yards per game including 181 passing and 225 rushing yards. South Carolina has allowed 420 yards per game on defense including 212 passing and 208 rushing yards per game. The Gamecocks have forced 4 turnovers and have 3 giveaways. South Carolina is averaging 55 penalty yards per game and opponents average 52. The Gamecocks are 11/28 on third and fourth down conversions and opponents are 11/31. South Carolina has forced 5 sacks and has allowed 3 of their own. The Gamecocks are 6/8 scoring in the red zone with 2 touchdowns, and opponents are 5/7 with 3 touchdowns.
Quarterback Connor Mitch injured his shoulder early in the Kentucky game and is out until at least late October. Perry Orth takes over as the starter. Orth has passed for 203 yards with a touchdown and an interception. Mitch passed for 165 yards with a touchdown, and rushed for 51 yards with a touchdown. Quarterback Gage Pucci is questionable with a knee injury.
Running back Brandon Wilds has 30 carries for 157 yards and no touchdowns, along with 6 catches for 66 yards. Shon Carson has 9 carries for 111 yards and a touchdown. David Williams has 15 carries for 60 yards. Receiver Pharoh Cooper has 12 catches for 145 yards and a touchdown, plus 4 catches for 20 yards. Jerell Adams has 5 catches for 70 yards. Four little used receivers/tight ends are questionable or out.
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Georgia is outscoring teams 41-14 this season. The Bulldogs average 429 yards per game on offense, including 262 passing and 167 rushing yards. Georgia is allowing 326 yards per game on defense, including 251 passing and 75 rushing yards. The Bulldogs have forced four turnovers and have one of their own. Georgia averages 61 penalty yards per game and opponents average 25. The Bulldogs are 9/22 on third down conversions, and opponents are 15/39. Georgia has forced 6 sacks and allowed 2 this season. Georgia is 6/7 scoring in the red zone with 5 touchdowns, and opponents are 2/5 with 2 touchdowns. Georgia has scored on a pick six and a punt return for a touchdown.
Quarterback Greyson Lambert has passed for 257 yards with 2 rushing touchdowns and also has a rushing touchdown. Brice Ramsey has thrown for 76 yards with a touchdown.
Running back Nick Chubb has 35 carries for 309 yards and 2 touchdowns. Sony Michel has 18 carries for 97 yards with a touchdown and also has 4 catches for 109 yards and a touchdown. Keith Marshall has 15 carries for 84 yards and 2 touchdowns. Receiver Malcolm Mitchell has 7 catches for 88 yards and a touchdown. Terry Godwin has 4 catches for 41 yards. Tight end Jeb Blazevich has 2 catches for 34 yards and a touchdown.
South Carolina is 3-7 ATS after a straight up loss, 2-5 in SEC games and 2-7 in September. The under is 14-4 in this series recently. The Gamecocks are 6-1 ATS against the Bulldogs recently including 4-1 in Athens.
Georgia is 5-1 ATS after an ATS loss, and on grass, 5-2 overall, 5-12-1 after a straight up win, and 1-8 after allowing more than 280 passing yards. The home team and favorite are both 4-1 ATS in the series recently.
South Carolina is clearly rebuilding, and it doesn’t get any easier without Mitch for an extended period of time. Georgia is one of the favorites to win the SEC and contend for a playoff spot. I like the Bulldogs to win in a rout at home.