The No. 1 team in the country, the Georgia Bulldogs, are set for their fourth straight home game, welcoming a UAB Blazers team that has put a ton of points on the board this season, but have lost back-to-back high-scoring affairs. While Georgia pulled out a 24-14 victory last week over South Carolina, it was a game that proved to be their biggest test to this point.
On Saturday, Carson Beck and company welcome a Blazers team that’s posted identical passing yardage averages per game (318.7) as Georgia. However, while the Bulldogs rolled through two overmatched early season opponents in UT Martin and Ball State, outscoring them a combined 93-10, UAB’s path has looked different.
The Blazers had no problem against NC A&T, winning 35-6 to start the year, but proceeded to fall to Georgia Southern and Louisiana by 14 and 20 points, allowing 41 and 49 points in the two losses. UAB’s defense is their potential downfall against Georgia, but do they have the offensive firepower to cover a massive 42-point spread? Let’s bust it out in this week’s NCAAF free picks breakdown of the top team in the country.
Projected Total That’s Too Low for UAB vs Georgia?
You’d get very little pushback on the fact that UAB’s offense is set to face a different beast than anything they’ve seen this season. While quarterback Jacob Zeno has completed 98-of-122 passes this season for 956 yards and six scores, he’ll be in for a brutally tough night on the road against this Georgia defense.
The Bulldogs have allowed just 177 passing yards and 87.3 rushing yards per game and effectively made South Carolina’s run game a non-factor last week. To top it off, Gamecocks quarterback Spencer Rattler had a tough day passing the ball, completing 22-of-42 attempts for 256 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions. To sum up the impact of Georgia’s defense, consider that Rattler had completed 76.9 and 92.6 percent of his passes in the two games prior.
Even still, with a projected total set at 54½ paired with the fact that UAB gave up 90 points over their past two games, it’s not unrealistic to expect the Bulldogs to put up another 40-plus point performance. The total could be worth digging into among our college picks Sept. 24.
Jacob Zeno is #2 in Nation in completion %.
— BirminghamSports (@BirminghamSport) September 14, 2023
Potentially Massive Day in Store for Georgia’s Rushing Game
While the Louisiana vs. UAB game was out of reach by halftime, with the Ragin’ Cajuns leading 24-0, it’s hard to overlook the stat line of running back Jacob Kibodi against this defense. On just seven carries, Kibodi racked up 108 yards and one score. Don’t be surprised if Georgia grabs a lead early and lets running backs Daijun Edwards, Kendall Milton and Roderick Robinson run wild.
Georgia should have no issue putting points on the board, while UAB won’t have an answer to the run game and it would be shocking to see them manage to keep quarterback Carson Beck in check as well.
Predicted Score: Georgia Bulldogs 48 UAB Blazers 10
UAB vs Georgia Game Information
• Game: UAB (1-2) vs Georgia (3-0)
• Date/Time: Sept. 23, 7:30 p.m. ET
• Location: Sanford Stadium, Athens, Ga.
• UAB vs Georgia Live Stream: ESPN
UAB vs Georgia Best Bets
When evaluating NCAA football expert picks, one of the toughest types of games to decide on features a top team in the country against a team likely drastically overmatched. The reason for this is largely due to the huge expected spread, which is certainly the case here.
The Bulldogs are favored by 42 at home, and while they’re certainly talented enough to cover it, there are a ton of questions about what happens if/when they get a big lead, or how they approach the second half/fourth quarter, among other things. In turn, the target play for the spread could prove to be rolling with Georgia for the first half at -27 in the Las Vegas odds.
College Football Pick: Georgia 1H (-27)
UAB vs Georgia Betting Odds
Let’s take the road less traveled for the total on the UAB vs. Georgia game. Although 54 points is a lot in a game where it’s unknown how a massive underdog’s offense will perform against one of the country’s top defenses, Georgia’s offense should supply enough offensively to do more than enough on their end to clear this total when betting online.
But that brings the discussion to the other side of the field, where bettors of the over may need at least some points from UAB. So, while taking the over here seems fine, one other interesting play if targeting that, is to take UAB to score at least seven points in live betting. All we need is one touchdown and while it would be surprising to see UAB score multiple times, I’ll buy that the Blazers can find the end zone at least once.
College Football Pick: Over 54½ points