Bulldogs vs Tigers NCAA Football Spread/Handicapping
ESPN’s show College Game Day will visit “Death Valley” for the second time as the defending SEC East champion No. 5 Georgia Bulldogs kick off their 2013 season by renewing an old rivalry with a No. 8 ranked Tigers team that is looking to build on last year’s season success.
When: Saturday, Aug. 31, 2013 at 8 PM EST
Where: Frank Howard Field at Memorial Stadium, in Clemson, S.C.
LINE: -1 (Bulldogs), O/U 68
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The Tigers are coming off a huge Chick-Fil-A bowl win over top-10-ranked LSU, and have several key starters from that team who will return.
However, they are still looking for a solid No. 2 wide receiver after losing DeAndre Hopkins and running back Andre Ellington to the NFL.
That will put a lot of pressure on the league’s most likely Heisman Trophy contender; quarterback Tajh Boyd, who has been the main reason for the resurrection of Clemson football.
Prior to last season, the Tigers finished outside the final AP Top 25 seven of last the eight times they were ranked in the preseason poll, but not last season as they finished 11th.
Still, one thing that has to have Tigers’ fans concerned heading into 2013, is the fact that they graduated nearly everyone off the defensive side of the football.
That’s going to be a huge concern against a team like Georgia, which has a ton of offensive weapons to hit their opponents with.
The Bulldogs are coming off a big Capital One bowl game victory over Nebraska to end last season, and were top contenders for playing in the BCS Championship game, but came up short — literally.
They are however, bringing back quarterback Aaron Murray, along with a deep receiving corp and possibly the best running back in the SEC — Todd Gurley.
However, just like Clemson, the Bulldogs are too replacing a number of key defenders, but they have good depth and have some talented underclassmen.
So while, UGA definitely has the stronger offense its unproven defense may likely result in this game being a very high scoring affair
Therefore, I expect turnovers to ultimately decide this one.
Offensively, the Bulldogs gave up fewer balls than the Tigers in more games against tougher defenses last season. And since Clemson’s D was only mediocre at stealing the ball, Georgia holds the advantage.
Expect UGA to score early and often, beating Clemson at home, a place where they are 10-9 ATS over the past three years, and are 0-2 as home dogs.
Matt’s Free Prediction: Georgia Bulldogs 41, Clemson Tigers 35.