College Football Week 9 Picks: Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets vs. Pittsburgh Panthers

Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets vs. Pittsburgh Panthers
Saturday, 10/25/14, 3:30 PM EST
Opening Point Spread:  Pittsburgh -3.5
Current Betting Line:  Pittsburgh -3
Opening Total:  55.5
Current Total:  55.5
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

The Pittsburgh Panthers are 3-0 SU all-time at home in this series
The Pittsburgh Panthers are 3-0 SU all-time at home in this series

Georgia Tech has dropped back-to-back games, including a 48-43 setback to the North Carolina Tar Heels as 2.5-point road underdogs last Saturday, while going OVER the betting total for the first time in four contests.  The Yellow Jackets are led offensively by dual-threat quarterback Justin Thomas, which is important to consider when making your Week 9 college football betting picks, as he leads all players in averaging 19.2 yards per completion.  He also is a big reason why the team ranks fourth in the country in gaining 306.3 rushing yards a contest.  Georgia Tech is 3-10 SU and 5-8 ATS as underdogs the last two-plus seasons.

The Yellow Jackets are capable of turning things around, which can’t be ignored when looking over the college football betting odds, as they’ve made 17 consecutive bowl appearances.  Georgia Tech also has a special-teams playmaker in defensive back Jamal Golden, who has 496 combined return yards to rank 14th in the country in that all-important statistical category.  The school is 3-5 SU all-time in this series, but it has dropped all three prior meetings in the Steel City.

Pittsburgh snapped a three-game losing streak by capturing a 21-16 victory over the Virginia Tech Hokies as one-point home underdogs on Oct. 16, while going UNDER the betting total for a fourth consecutive affair.  The Panthers will try to control the football with running back James Conner leading the way, as he needs only 41 yards to become the 13th player in school history to reach the 1,000-yard mark for a season.  An improved offensive line has allowed the team to control the clock, as it ranks 16th in fewest tackles for loss allowed.  Pittsburgh is 13-6 SU and 9-10 ATS as favorites since the 2012 campaign.

The Panthers have the fourth-best statistical defense in the Atlantic Coast Conference, as the unit is surrendering just 280.4 yards per contest.  Pittsburgh started the year fielding one of the youngest teams in the country, with 81 underclassmen on the roster, but that group is starting to grow up under third year head coach Paul Chryst.

Sports bettors will likely play the total, as the OVER is 7-3 in the Yellow Jackets’ last 10 games in October.

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