Despite dropping their first two games, the Gamecocks are still undefeated against the spread. They hope to continue that streak as they travel to Nashville this Saturday for a matinee with the Vanderbilt Commodores.
South Carolina is coming off a mediocre showing against the Gators while Vanderbilt hopes to rebound after getting obliterated by the LSU Tigers 41-7.
According to VegasInsider.com, the oddsmakers see the Cocks getting the victory by 13.5 points.
The line hasn’t moved too much either from the 12-point opening spread.
ESPN’s FPI seems to agree with the spread as well, giving South Carolina a 79.8% chance of winning the contest.
The over/under is set at 44.
Why was the line set at this number?
Over the past two weeks, USC has had no real issues getting the ball in the end zone averaging 25.5 points over the first two weeks (against two SEC powerhouses too).
On the flip side, offense just so happens to be Vanderbilt’s problem (among many other things) scoring a total of 19 points in their first two games.
To make things worse for the Commodores, they haven’t beaten the Cocks since 2008, and the scores weren’t close the last two times these teams met.
With all that in mind, I agree with the line wholeheartedly, which doesn’t really happen too much.
I can’t see Vandy putting up more than 14, and I can’t see South Carolina putting up less than 28.
What will have to happen for the Gamecocks to cover?
They just have to keep doing what they’ve been doing to neutralize this team over the last 12 years.
While some players from Tennessee and Florida gave me worries defensively, I don’t really see any of that with this team.
Just don’t give up the big play, don’t play with the goal of simply being competitive and please don’t be stupid.
What’s the better bet?
I don’t see the winning streak against the spread stopping now, especially at the hands of one of the bottom-feeders in the conference.
The Cocks are only improving, and this game should be used as a good confidence boost going into next week’s home matchup against Auburn.
This game should simply be target practice for Collin Hill and may be a good time to experiment with Dakereon Joyner in the passing game.
Give me a win somewhere from 14 to 24 points.