Texas Longhorns (9-4) at Georgia Bulldogs (11-2)
College Football: Tuesday, January 1, 2019 at 8:45 pm (Mercedes-Benz Superdome)
The Line: Georgia Bulldogs -11.5 -- Over/Under: 57 Click to Get Latest Betting Odds
The 15th ranked Texas Longhorns & 5th ranked Georgia Bulldogs will square off in the AllState Sugar Bowl at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome this Tuesday night.
The 15th ranked Texas Longhorns continued to grow under head coach Tom Herman as they finished their 2018 season with an overall record of 9-4. Texas won their final three games of the regular season to finish reach the Big-12 Championship game, however, they couldn’t get their 2nd victory against Oklahoma on the season as they fell to the Sooners by a 39-27 margin. Texas had a few marquee victories this season as they defeated USC, Oklahoma, and Iowa State this season. This will be the 2nd straight year that Texas has made a Bowl game after the Longhorns defeated the Missouri Tigers, 33-16, in the Academy Sports & Outdoors Texas Bowl last season.
On the season, Texas is averaging 31.3 ppg on 415.6 total yards per game (264.5 passing yds/g; 151.2 rushing yds/g). Offensively, Texas has been led by QB Sam Ehlinger who has completed 64.3% of his passes for 25 TD’s & 5 INT while averaging 240.5 passing yds/g. Ehlinger has also been dangerous with his legs this season as he has 13 rushing TD’s on the season. The top receiving threats for the Longhorns have been Lil’ Jordan Humphrey (6.1 rec/g; 85.3 yds/g; 9 TD), Collin Johnson (5.4 rec/g; 78.8 yds/g; 7 TD), and Devin Duvernay (3.0 rec/g; 40.3 yds/g; 4 TD). Leading the way for the Longhorns backfield has been the duo of Tre Watson (12.9 att/g; 53.5 yds/g; 3 TD) & Keaontay Ingram (11.1 att/g; 56.9 yds/g; 3 TD).
Defensively, Texas is allowing their opponents to average 26.2 ppg on 401.2 total yards per game (265.2 passing yds/g; 135.9 rushing yds/g). The Longhorns have forced 18 turnovers on the season and currently have a turnover margin of +7.
The 5th ranked Georgia Bulldogs finished their season with an impressive 11-2 record, however, the Bulldogs fell just short of reaching the CFB Playoffs after they were defeated by the Alabama Crimson Tide by a 35-28 margin in the SEC Championship game. Georgia had Alabama on the ropes, however, allowed the Crimson Tide to score 21-unanswered points to finish off the game and get the come from behind victory. Georgia’s biggest victories of the season came against Florida, Kentucky, and Auburn. Georgia hasn’t missed a Bowl game since the 1996 season and fell just short of the National Championship last season after falling to Alabama in the CPF by a 26-23 margin in OT.
On the season, Georgia is averaging 39.2 ppg on 478.8 total yards per game (227.2 passing yds/g; 251.6 rushing yds/g). Offensively, Georgia has been led by QB Jake Fromm who has completed 68.4% of his passes for 27 TD & 5 INT while averaging 195.2 rushing yds/g. The top receivers for Fromm and the Bulldogs have been Mecole Hardman (2.5 rec/g; 40.7 yds/g; 6 TD), Riley Ridley (3.0 rec/g; 39.2 yds/g; 9 TD), and Isaac Nauta (2.2 rec/g; 32.8 yds/g; 3 TD). Leading the way for the Bulldogs backfield has been the duo of D’Andre Swift (11.9 att/g; 79.8 yds/g; 10 TD) & Elijah Holyfield (11.3 att/g; 73.5 yds/g; 7 TD).
Defensively, Georgia is holding their opponents to an average of 18.5 ppg on 311.2 total yards per game (180.5 passing yds/g; 130.6 rushing yds/g). Georgia forced their opponents to commit 17 turnovers on the season and currently have a turnover margin of +5.
The Longhorns are 6-2-1 ATS in their last 9 games following a straight up loss and 13-6-2 ATS vs. a team with a winning record. The Bulldogs are 5-0 ATS in their last 5 Bowl games and 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games overall.
Texas continues to show improvement under Tom Herman and has to be thrilled to have QB Sam Ehlinger back next season, however, I think their going to run into an angry Georgia team who probably feels that they were better than both Notre Dame or Oklahoma who made the CFB Playoffs. Georgia’s defense I think could give Ehlinger some trouble and as I think Jake Fromm and the Bulldogs offense won’t have any issues putting up points against a Texas defense that gave up 34+ points in six games this season, I’m taking Georgia to cover this double-digit spread.