Stuckey’s Week 2 FCS Betting Report: 3 Underdogs Worth Buying on Friday & Saturday
Ken Ruinard/Anderson Independent Mail via USA TODAY NETWORK. Pictured: Furman Head Coach Clay Hendrix
- Stuckey dives into three FCS games he's interested in betting this weekend, including one Friday night.
I don’t see much value in either FBS game on Friday, but think the lone FBS-FCS matchup may present a betting opportunity for those looking to invest in the lower-limit FCS betting markets.
I also have two FCS underdogs on my radar that I think could potentially pull off upsets over FBS opponents on Saturday.
Stuckey’s FCS Betting Report, Week 2
William & Mary (+33) at Virginia
Friday, 8 p.m. ET on ACCN
Coming off of a huge road conference victory against Pittsburgh to start the season, Virginia now heads home to take on in-state FCS opponent William & Mary.
Virginia should win this game with ease but I’m just not sure how much it cares about blowing this one open. More importantly, how much time they spend preparing for a significantly inferior opponent, especially with another game against an ACC opponent on deck when they host Florida State next Saturday.
And lack of preparation could prove difficult (on a short week to boot) against a William and Mary team that uses multiple quarterbacks in a unique new shotgun “GoGo” offense with an experienced offensive line. Keep your eyes on freshman Hollis Mathis, an exciting dual-threat quarterback who broke the school’s quarterback rushing record in the Tribe’s season-opening win against Lafayette.
Plus, head coach Mike London used to coach at Virginia, so you know a return trip to Charlottesville is personal. London recruited a lot of the seniors currently on the Cavalier roster. I doubt Bronco Mendhenhall wants to embarrass the man he replaced as Virginia’s Head Coach back in 2015.
It also helps that Virginia is an absolute snail, which makes it tougher to cover a bigger number. The ‘Hoos finished 125th in Adjusted Pace last season.
Overall, William and Mary is nothing to write home about even at the FCS level but they will undoubtedly care about this game against an in-state older brother. Meanwhile, I think Virginia just wants to build a lead, stay healthy and get out within a win ahead of Florida State.
Wait to see if you can get 35 but anything over 31 should suffice.
Bet to Watch: William & Mary +33
Saturday FCS Games
Two FCS teams in particular stick out on Saturday’s card.
Maine +9.5 at Georgia Southern
Saturday, 6 p.m. ET
Georgia Southern got absolutely blitzed in its Week 1 matchup with LSU in a game that wasn’t close from the opening kick.
The Eagles can get over the expected loss, but an injury to junior quarterback Shai Werts could loom large this Saturday. Werts couldn’t finish the game after he injured his shoulder against the Tigers and is listed as day-to-day. If he can’t go, a redshirt freshman would get the nod under center.
Even if Werts can play, Maine can hang here. The Black Bears are a top 10 team at the FCS level that returns a ton of production on both sides of the ball from last year’s playoff team. They also went on the road and beat FBS Western Kentucky (and hung with Central Michigan), so this stage doesn’t phase them.
Maine is led by its vaunted “Black Hole” defense that returns almost everything from its two-deep last year. The Black Bears actually had one of the best rush defenses at the FCS level last year, which is critical against Georgia Southern’s triple option attack.
— Maine Football (@BlackBearsFB) August 3, 2019
Georgia Southern is also a team I had circled as a potential fade over the first month of the season.
The Eagles went from 10 losses in 2017 to 10 wins in 2018. And while the improvement was substantial and legitimate, they were not a 10-win team. They got lucky in the injury/turnover departments and won about two more games than they should’ve. And now they must deal with a mass exodus of their skill position players and the departure of two All-Conference offensive linemen.
As a result, I think they will be a tad bit overvalued in the betting market to start the season. I like anything over a touchdown but would wait to see if a 10 pops.
Bet to Watch: Maine +9.5
Furman +7.5 at Georgia State
Saturday, 7 p.m. ET
I think you have to take a long look at Furman catching a touchdown or more against Georgia State.
The obvious angle here is a major letdown for Georgia State, which comes off an enormous win at Tennessee as a 25-point underdog, which will end up being the biggest upset of the college football season. You could see the Panthers coming out extremely flat in this one.
But I also like the matchup.
Furman, ranked No. 11 in FCS, runs a triple-option offense, which obviously makes preparation tougher. Plus, Georgia State’s defense was absolutely awful against the run lat year, ranking 130th in Rush Explosiveness and 129th in Rush Explosiveness, per SP+.
The Panthers were essentially the worst team in college football at preventing big plays on the ground and stopping opposing backs behind the line of scrimmage. That’s a nightmare combination against Furman’s triple-option attack. I’m still baffled how Tennessee only handed the ball off 13 times to its running backs last week.
You’re getting some line value here after Georgia State’s monumental upset over Tennessee in a game that should be under a touchdown. Furman should have plenty of success on the ground against a Georgia State team that could potentially come out flat in a terrible situational spot.
Bet to Watch: Furman +7.5