RUNNING COAST TO COAST
The Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns know what they do best – and fans and bettors can expect them to do a lot of it as they visit Coastal Carolina on Thursday night. The visiting v that ranks in the middle of the pack nationally in run defense. Of greater concern for the visitors is whether an all-out rush attack will be enough, as they might struggle through the air against Coastal Carolina's 10th-ranked pass defense (175.5 yards allowed per game).
While this might be a bit more of a grind than the Cajuns are used to, they should still be able to use their sensational ground game to pound Coastal Carolina into submission. We like the visitors – but at a half-point lower than the current spread.
TROUBLE WITH TURNOVERS
Oddsmakers have Thursday night's American Athletic Conference showdown between Temple and host South Florida as a tight one – but turnovers could make the home team a much more attractive proposition. The Bulls are on an incredible turnover spree, having forced 20 through their first eight games (second only to Illinois). USF also ranks inside the top-10 in turnover margin at +7. The Owls, on the other hand, have turned the ball over 15 times on the season and boast a -3 turnover margin. Turnovers went a long way in deciding last year's outcome, with Temple capitalizing on five USF miscues to earn a 27-17 win.
The Bulls will likely take much better care of the football this time around, which is more than we can say for visiting Temple. We like both the home team cover and the defensive/special teams touchdown here.
BRYANT "ON TRACK" TO RETURN
The Missouri Tigers will likely have their starting quarterback in the lineup for Saturday's daunting encounter with host Georgia. Kelly Bryant handled the majority of first-team reps during Wednesday's practice, and looks to be nearing a return to action after suffering a hamstring injury in a 29-7 defeat at the hands of Kentucky prior to last week's bye. Bryant completed just 10-of-19 passes for 130 yards in that game, and has thrown for a meager 270 total yards over his previous two contests. Taylor Powell will likely get the start if Bryant isn't able to suit up against the Bulldogs.
Missouri has been a thorn in Georgia bettors' side in recent years with four consecutive covers in the head-to-head series – but with both defenses looking stout and the Tigers' offense in a bit of a tailspin, the Under looks like a terrific play.
DIVINITY TO MISS LSU-BAMA SHOWDOWN
The biggest game on the college football calendar to date will be missing at least one key defensive player. LSU learned it will be without star linebacker Michael Divinity, who left the team this week due to personal reasons. Divinity has been a standout on the Tigers' defensive unit in 2019, racking up 23 tackles, four tackles for loss and three sacks despite missing three games earlier in the season. LSU head coach Ed Orgeron couldn't say whether Divinity would return to the team later in the season. Look for the Tigers to rely even more on their nickel and dime packages with Divinity out of action.
The idea is to not make things easier on a Crimson Tide offense led by Heisman Trophy candidate (and future NFLer) Tua Tagovailoa. This development leads us to put more stock in the home team to cover Saturday.