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LSU vs. UCF - 1/1/19 College Football Fiesta Bowl Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Game
LSU Tigers (9-3) at UCF Knights (12-0)
Date & Time Tuesday January 1, 2019, 1:00 PM (EST)
Location
The Line
The Line: UCF Knights +7 -- Over/Under: 55.5
TV Channel
ESPN
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The LSU Tigers and UCF Knights meet Tuesday in the college football Fiesta Bowl at State Farm Stadium.

The LSU Tigers have won four of their last six games and look for their first double-digit winning season since 2013. The LSU Tigers have won three of their last five non-home games. Joe Burrow is completing 57.4 percent of his passes for 2,500 yards, 12 touchdowns and four interceptions. Burrow has one or less touchdown passes in seven of his last 10 games. Justin Jefferson and Stephen Sullivan have combined for 1,075 receiving yards and six touchdowns while Dee Anderson has 20 receptions. The LSU Tigers ground game is averaging 174.6 yards per contest, and Nick Brossette leads the way with 922 yards and 14 touchdowns. Defensively, LSU is allowing 20.9 points and 346.1 yards per game. Devin White leads the LSU Tigers with 115 tackles, Grant Delpit has five sacks and John Battle has three interceptions.

The UCF Knights look for their second straight undefeated season and their fifth bowl victory in school history. The UCF Knights haven’t lost a non-home game since November of 2016. Darriel Mack Jr. is completing 57.1 percent of his passes for 522 yards, two touchdowns and zero interceptions. Mack enters this game with 70 career pass attempts under his belt. Gabriel Davis and Dredrick Snelson have combined for 1,420 receiving yards and 11 touchdowns while Tre Nixon has 40 receptions. The UCF Knights ground game is averaging 276.5 yards per contest, and Greg McCrae leads the way with 1,101 yards and nine touchdowns. Defensively, UCF is allowing 21.3 points and 423.6 yards per game. Richie Grant leads the UCF Knights with 102 tackles, Titus Davis has 6.5 sacks and Nevelle Clarke has two interceptions.

The Tigers are 2-5 ATS in their last 7 bowl games, 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games in January and 1-6-1 ATS in their last 8 non-conference games. The Knights are 5-2 ATS in their last 7 non-conference games, 4-0 ATS vs. a team with a winning record and 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games overall. The under is 7-2 in Knights last 9 games overall. The under is 3-1-1 in Tigers last 5 games overall.

The LSU Tigers have been hit or miss all season long, but the offense has picked up recently and they're averaging 46 points in their last three games. The UCF Knights still haven't lost since Black Beatles was on the top of the music charts, and each of their last six victories have been decided by double digits. The LSU Tigers have failed to cover eight of their last 12 games when a favorite of at least seven points. The UCF Knights have covered three of their last four games when an underdog of at least seven points. LSU should be favored here simply based on the overall talent advantage, but betting against the UCF Knights hasn't made much since over the years. UCF is not only games left and right, but its been on the right side of the number more times than not. We also saw UCF dominate an SEC school in last years bowl game and there's even more motivation after being snubbed by the playoff committee yet again. The UCF Knights do have their hands full with an inexperienced quarterback, but it's a team that's given us no reason to bet against them. Give me my free touchdown.

Pick:
UCF Knights +7

Randy Chambers has been with Sports Chat Place since 2014 and covers everything from the NFL to WNBA and tennis. Nobody works harder in this business in terms of content produced and amount of sports covered. Formerly a lead college football writer with Bleacher Report and has had his work featured at Fox Sports, CBS Sports and various other outlets.

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