The South Alabama Jaguars try to bounce back from a pair of disappointing losses when they play host to the Georgia Southern Eagles for a Sun Belt contest on Thursday night.
South Alabama lost at Texas State in four overtimes last weekend 33-31, one week after falling to Louisiana by two. The Eagles are also coming off a loss, losing to Troy, 27-24. Both teams could use a win to stay in their respective division races, so this one will be a hard-fought affair. If you’re looking to bet online on Thursday night football, we’ll take a closer look at the college football odds for this one to help you make your selections.
|Game: Georgia Southern Eagles (2-4, 1-2) at South Alabama Jaguars (3-2, 0-2)
Location: Hancock Whitney Stadium
Time: 7:30 p.m. ET
|Team||Point Spread||Moneyline||Over/Under||Team Total|
Georgia Southern has dominated, winning all seven meetings, including all three played in Mobile, Ala. The Eagles won last year’s contest, 24-17, in a rare close game between the schools.
In the seven matchups between the conference rivals, Georgia Southern has outscored South Alabama, 251-79. The Jaguars have scored just eight touchdowns in the seven games in the rivalry.
Georgia Southern Eagles
Next game: vs. Georgia State
Down 24-3 in the third quarter, Georgia Southern made a comeback with 21 straight points before falling 27-24 to Troy on Saturday. Alex Raynor connected on two field goals in the fourth quarter to tie the game for the Eagles, but Brooks Buce’s 24-yard field goal with 1:46 to play proved to be the difference.
Quarterback Justin Tomlin threw for a career-high 210 yards but also had three interceptions. The Eagles’ running game couldn’t get much of anything going, producing a total of 82 yards.
Quin Williams’ fumble recovery in the third quarter helped set up a touchdown and was the first by the Eagles this season. It was the only turnover forced by the Georgia Southern defense.
Despite the loss, the Eagles won their third straight against the spread, covering the 5½ points that the Trojans were favored by. Georgia Southern is 2-3 against the spread this season.
Interim head coach Kevin Whitley announced that defensive lineman Gavin Adcock had been removed from the team. Adcock was caught on a viral video chugging a beer while standing on top of the team bus. The senior nose tackle had returned to action for the Eagles’ last game against Troy after being suspended following the video going public.
South Alabama Jaguars
Next game: at Louisiana-Monroe
The Jaguars blew a 14-point lead and fell in four overtimes 33-31 to the Texas State Bobcats. Quarterback Jake Bentley threw for 189 yards and two touchdowns to lead the South Alabama offense.
Jalen Tolbert had five receptions for 84 yards to pace the Jaguars. South Alabama was outgained 399-329, including a 212-140 disadvantage on the ground.
Bentley found Tolbert for a touchdown in the first overtime, but the Bobcats matched the score to keep the game going. Neither team was able to score in the second or third overtime periods before Texas State scored in the fourth extra period to earn the win.
The Jaguars fell to 2-3 against the spread this season, failing to cover the four-point spread they were favored by. South Alabama is 2-1 at home against the spread in 2021.
The Jaguars are having some major injury troubles. Center James Jackson isn’t expected to play due to a knee injury. The defense could be missing linebackers Chris Henderson, Shawn Jennings and Ke’Shun Brown, who are dealing with injuries, while A.J. DeShazor will miss the first half after a targeting call in the second half against Texas State.
Betting on the Game
South Alabama is fourth in the Sun Belt in points allowed per game at 19.8 points per game. The Jaguars will try to slow the Eagles’ running game, which is averaging 253.3 yards per game.
South Alabama has played a couple of close games in its last two contests, but this one likely won’t be. The Eagles are likely to improve to 8-0 in the series with a win in this game.
If you’re confident in the Eagles staying perfect against the Jaguars, the moneyline bet is the way to go. It gets you a slightly better payout without having to get the three points.
On the other hand, if you’re backing the Jaguars, a moneyline pick allows you to win in a close game. Again, it’s only a slight difference odds-wise from a point spread bet, but you can at least keep the three points.
A total of 49½ is almost exactly the total of the two teams’ scoring averages for the season. Having a short week — especially after a four-overtime game for the Jaguars — may make the going a little rough in the early going, but both teams should be able to put some points on the board in this one. When making your college football picks, the safe bet is going over the total in this big game for both teams.