Submitted by Jim Hurley on Friday, September 27, 2013 at 7:00 AM
There aren’t going to be many matchups this season where truly elite teams go head-to-head in college football. There’s a chance we may have as many as four or five undefeated teams when the regular season ends because of the paucity of real tests. Well…Saturday afternoon’s LSU/Georgia game (to be televised by CBS) is positioned to be one of the very best regular season games all season long. Maybe Oregon/Stanford will be better. And, should LSU win at Georgia, then their games later this season against Alabama and Texas A&M would also register as potential classics. For now…Tigers/Bulldogs is shaping up as THE midseason highlight.
That may surprise some of you because Georgia is currently way down at #9 in the media polls. Why would #6 LSU visiting #9 Georgia grade out as a classic? This isn’t #1 vs. #2 by any means. There’s a consensus in the media and the markets that Alabama and Oregon are currently the best two. But, if you look at respected Power Ratings or computer ratings from oddsmakers, sharps, and the best quants, you’ll see that many have LSU and Georgia right behind the first two…as co #3’s.
*You know LSU and Georgia are seen as even because Georgia is -3 at home
*The markets would have LSU and Georgia favored over Ohio State on a neutral field
*The markets would have LSU and Georgia favored over Clemson on a neutral field
*The markets would have LSU and Georgia favored over Stanford on a neutral field
*The markets wouldn’t have LSU or Georgia as a neutral underdog to Florida State
Heck, Georgia was a road favorite at Clemson! That’s the game they lost…in nailbiter fashion…while dealing with devastating injuries…in a game they won stats in by a meaningful margin.
LSU and Georgia are in the “next tier” behind Alabama and Oregon…and most respected voices believe they head that tier.
Let’s review their seasons to date…
LSU (-4) beat TCU 37-27 (winning yardage 448-259)
LSU (-35) beat UAB 56-17 (winning yardage 445-296)
LSU (-36) beat Kent State 45-13 (winning yardage 571-248)
LSU (-17) beat Auburn 35-21 (winning yardage 456-436)
The Tigers were more impressive vs. TCU than the final score would suggest…but TCU has been a disappointment since. LSU coasted vs. outmanned UAB and Kent State in a way that got a lot of backups some experience. The Auburn win was almost more impressive than the final score…with the loser getting some garbage time points and yards to save some face.
LSU enters Athens, Georgia playing exactly the way they want to. The offense is sharp. The defense is getting things done when the game is on the line (though the backups aren’t to be trusted yet in garbage time). We may be looking at Game One in a “Shock the SEC” run to the title for the Tigers.
Georgia (-1.2) lost at Clemson 38-35 (winning yardage 544-467)
Georgia (-3) beat South Carolina 41-30 (winning yardage 538-454)
Georgia (-32) beat North Texas 45-21 (winning yardage 641-245)
The Bulldogs had a bye after the South Carolina game, which is why they’ve only taken the field three times. You can see that they won yardage at Clemson by a good bit…within a sampling where they can seemingly reach 500 yards on command. Hey…that’s South Carolina’s defense in there! There were some miscues last week vs. North Texas that kept that game closer than it should have been. You can see it was a yardage rout.
Does the loss at Clemson signal a potential loss to LSU? That’s possible. Georgia’s defense wasn’t as tough as needed when the game was on the line. Georgia is still too mistake-prone while gobbling up yardage. They played relatively clean vs. South Carolina and won by double digits. Based on the numbers we’ve seen today…the win and cover is likely to come down to Georgia’s execution. It’s their game to win…it’s their game to lose if they give up anything cheap on special teams or with defensive points.
Current Vegas Line: Georgia by 3, total of 61.5
Of course, JIM HURLEY knows you have to look beyond the numbers in a game like this. That’s why his exclusive TEAM HANDICAPPING approach does so well in monster matchups! His SCOUTS and SOURCES will tell him which team has the most personnel advantages. His COMPUTER PROGRAMMERS will run the simulations thousands of times to account for every possibility. His WISE GUY CONNECTIONS in Las Vegas and offshore will alert him to any suspicious line moves. And, it all comes together to create BIG, JUICY WINNERS for NETWORK clients!
You can purchase game day winners in all sports right here at the website with your credit card. If LSU/Georgia qualifies, it will be available for purchase Saturday morning before the games kick off. If you have any questions about our program or this weekend’s card, call us in the office at 1-888-777-4155.
Our big game NOTEBOOK previews continue Saturday with Wisconsin at Ohio State in one of the games of the year in the Big 10. It’s back to the NFL Sunday and Monday with New England/Atlanta (NBC) and Miami/New Orleans (ESPN).
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