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Week 1: North Carolina vs. LSU Preview & Pick

UNC Tar Heels vs LSU Tigers Gambling Preview + Predictions

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Date/Time: Saturday, September 4, 8:00 p.m. ET
Venue: Georgia Dome
LSU (0-0) vs North Carolina (0-0) Lines
Moneyline: Tigers -110, Tar Heels-110
CFB betting favorite: LSU -1
Over/Under: 39.5
Bet Now @ Betus.com!

(21) LSU

After Zach Lee decided to leave LSU to pitch for the Los Angeles Dodgers, the Tigers start their season in a bit of disarray.

Turns out Jordan Jefferson will return at quarterback after all. But will LSU fans be happy about that?

Jefferson’s arm lacks accuracy – though he didn’t get punished a ton for it last year, throwing just seven interceptions versus 17 touchdown passes. Still, if LSU wants to be taken seriously as a national contender, it will need more from the quarterback position.

And Jefferson will be hard-pressed to improve behind a line that returns just two starters this year.

On Saturday night, LSU, as usual, will rely on its strong defense to win. The Tigers have speed and aggression on their defensive line and will do their best to pressure mediocre UNC quarterback TJ Yates. [soliloquy id=”82219″]

(18) North Carolina

The Tar Heels are a popular sleeper in college football betting this season. After all, they return 18 starters, nine on each side of the ball. Their defense looks be a major strength this year; it already cracked the national top 15 in every major defensive statistical category last season.

Some bettors believe UNC has never fielded a better defense than it will starting this Saturday at the Georgia Dome.

But the question on everyone’s mind is how either of these two defensively sound teams will put points on the board. UNC isn’t really equipped to light it up, either. Yates was barely good enough to keep coach Butch Davis’ confidence last season, throwing for just 2,136 yards and 15 interceptions versus 14 touchdowns.

You can bet LSU will throw everything it has at him this Saturday.

UNC @ LSU Wagering Trends

The total has gone OVER in 13 of LSU’s last 18 games on the road
LSU is 10-4 SU in its last 14 games
The total has gone UNDER in 6 of LSU’s last 9 games
LSU is 12-6 SU in its last 18 games on the road
North Carolina is 5-2 SU in its last 7 games at home
North Carolina is 4-2 SU in its last 6 games

LSU vs. UNC Free Pick:

Especially since it’s played at a neutral site, this game feels like a coin flip. Two strong defenses, two sputtering offenses, no real home team. It’s no wonder the line is set at a single point at BetUs.com. Because the Tar Heels are so outstanding defensively – and because I’m not sold on Jefferson as a starter yet – I’ll lean UNC’s way. Don’t expect a shootout.

LSU vs North Carolina Prediction: North Carolina 21, LSU 17

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