South Carolina vs. UNC Betting Odds & Preview: Is Anyone Willing to Back Tar Heels?

South Carolina vs. UNC Betting Odds & Preview: Is Anyone Willing to Back Tar Heels? article feature image
Credit:

Jim Dedmon, USA Today Sports.

South Carolina vs. UNC Betting Odds

  • Odds: South Carolina -12
  • Over/Under: 62.5
  • Date: Saturday, Aug. 31
  • Time: 3:30 p.m. ET
  • TV: ESPN

All odds above are as of Saturday at 1:30 p.m. ET and via PointsBet.

Starting a true freshman quarterback in Week 1 is rarely an ideal scenario for a college football team. Starting one against an SEC defense in his first career collegiate action probably isn’t going to end well.

North Carolina will do just that when they throw 4-star quarterback Sam Howell into the fire against South Carolina. He was a massive recruit for the Tar Heels but that doesn’t mean he’ll be a star right away.

That’s why 62% of the bets are 87% of the money has come in on the Gamecocks thus far.

South Carolina has massive advantages in explosiveness and line score when they have the ball. The Gamecocks ranked 28th in explosiveness and 48th in offensive line score while North Carolina was 102nd in defending explosive plays and 91st in defensive line score.

The temperature is going to be nearly 90 degrees in Charlotte on Saturday so the break-neck pace that South Carolina moves at will wear out UNC’s defense even faster.

While North Carolina will be breaking in a true freshman QB, the Heels also have brand new coordinators on both sides of the ball. This is a perfect combination of events for a double digit Gamecocks win.

That’s why’s you’ve seen the line move from -7 to -10 this week and now all the way to -11. I was able to hop in on a -7 earlier in the summer but I would still play this game to -11. — Kyle Miller

Miller’s Pick: South Carolina -11

I don’t think a lot of people realize how fast-paced South Carolina has played recently under Will Muschamp. The Gamecocks ranked 11th nationally in plays per minute and adjusted pace last season, and were 35th in explosiveness on offense. I tend to reflexively remember his disastrous Florida offenses that couldn’t move the ball and associate him with a slower pace.

Jake Bentley is back at quarterback for South Carolina, and he will sling the ball around for better or worse. He returns a handful of weapons including receiver Bryan Edwards, whose numbers last season were eerily similar to now-49er Deebo Samuel.

South Carolina plays the type of defense that I get a little nervous about when betting overs — allow everything underneath, limit big plays — but the Gamecocks should have no trouble moving the ball against this North Carolina defense.

The over has been bet up and lost a little bit of closing line value, but there’s still numbers out there worth grabbing. — Steve Petrella

Pick: Over 62.5/63