Kent State vs Georgia Odds, Picks and Predictions: Bulldogs Bite Down on Golden Flashes

Georgia's stout defense, strong run game, and efficient quarterback play combined with its measured tempo will help keep this game Under its total. The Bulldogs also don't want to show all their cards, so expect a grind once they get a big lead.

Last Updated: Sep 24, 2022 8:18 AM ET Read Time: 4 min
Stetson Bennett Georgia Bulldogs College Football
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Georgia will meet up against another inferior opponent when they host Kent State Saturday afternoon. The Bulldogs have given one single touchdown in three games this season as they’ve rolled to a 3-0 start. The Golden Flashes have started the year with a 1-2 record with significant losses to Oklahoma and Washington.

Can Georgia cover this large number? Are there better markets to look at instead? Find out in our college football picks and predictions for Georgia vs. Kent State.

Kent State vs Georgia best odds

Kent State vs Georgia picks and predictions

The Georgia football program has been the most dominant team in college football for nearly a calendar year now.

The Bulldogs played two non-Power Five opponents last season and allowed one touchdown to each. This season, they’ve improved on that already, allowing just one touchdown to their first three opponents. At this point, it’s harder to argue who has the second-best defense in college football than to say that Georgia’s is the best.

Georgia is one of two teams in college football not to allow a passing touchdown and the only one that has done that facing multiple Power Five opponents. Additionally, the Bulldogs have allowed just five plays over 20 yards, again being the only team to let that few while facing multiple Power Five opponents.

As a result, the Under is the best bet in this one.

Let’s start with some raw data. In a sport mirrored with inconsistencies, the Bulldogs are relatively consistent. They’ve played three straight games that have gone Under this number by an average of 16.5 points. Moreover, their games have largely followed the same pattern. Georgia bullies its opponent early and builds a big lead before going vanilla on the play calling to coast to a big win.

Lather, rinse, repeat.

You’re getting value on this number because Kent State wants to run an up-tempo offense. It came into this season with that plan, and the Golden Flashes are known for that historically, but I’m not sure it’s been as fast as they’ve wanted.

Through three games, they are running a slightly above-average 72.5 plays per game. I’m not sure running an up-tempo offense is the best move against Georgia, particularly this early in the season. A season ago, teams that ran over 70 plays scored just three points in three tries in games in the first seven weeks (before the first BYE) of the season. Why is the seven-week stipulation notable? Because attrition hasn’t occurred, and the defense is as healthy as it’ll be all season.

The other side of this handicap is Georgia's tempo on offense. Historically, it wants to grind the games out with a run-first attack that sets up play-action opportunities. This season has been no different. Through three games, Georgia is 103rd in plays per game at 63.5.

A large combination of situational angles makes the Under the best side here. The tempo is a big part of that, but another part is Georgia not wanting to put much on film. It will get a big lead and the vanilla offense, along with managing the injury risk of the major players, will take over.

My best bet: Under 62.5 (-120 at DraftKings)

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Kent State vs Georgia betting preview

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Spread analysis Over/Under analysis Trend to know Game info Injuries Weather

Spread analysis

As you can tell, I’m not going to reinvent the wheel here and try to take Kent State to cover. Yes, it’s a significant number, but these are big numbers that Georgia has been covering. So let’s retake them to do just that. Here are a few trends to make a note of here:

  • Georgia is 4-1 against the spread in its last five games.
  • Georgia is 5-2 ATS in its last seven games in September.
  • Georgia is 6-1 ATS in its last seven games after accumulating more than 280 yards in its previous game.

There isn’t some deep analysis here other than saying Georgia looks like the best college football team. There’s simply no reason not to ride the trend of it covering numbers.

You also have the added benefit of QB Stetson Bennett looking like he’s on a mission to go to New York as a Heisman candidate. After posting the third-best QBR in college football a season ago at 86.7, he has the fifth-best QBR this year through three games at 92.9.

The Bulldogs are firing on all cylinders, and a MAC team with an offensive line that has to replace three starters and an inexperienced defense won’t change that. If you want some added comfort here, know that the Kent State defense was 116th against the run a season ago. That’s a scary situation facing a team like Georgia, which has built its entire identity on running the football and comes in averaging over five yards per carry.

Over/Under analysis

At the onset, I talked about why I thought the Under was the best bet. Instead of recanting some of those angles, let’s look at a few trends that are in our favor here:

  • The Under is 5-0 in Georgia’s last five games overall.
  • The Under is 8-2 in Georgia’s last 10 games after allowing less than 100 yards rushing in their previous game.
  • The Under is 6-0 in Georgia’s last six games after accumulating more than 450 yards in their previous game.
  • The Under is 4-0 in Georgia’s last four non-conference games.

The tempo of this matchup will be slow. The situation is such that it lends itself to conservative play calling from both sides. Kent State doesn’t want to make many mistakes with bold play calling forcing them out of the game early. Georgia doesn’t want to show plays it hasn’t shown already to avoid putting them on film. This one goes Under.

Kent State vs Georgia betting trend to know

Georgia is 4-1 ATS in its last five games. Find more NCAA betting trends for Kent State vs. Georgia.

Kent State vs Georgia game info

Location: Sanford Stadium, Athens, GA
Date: Saturday, September 24, 2022
Kick-off: 12:00 p.m. ET
TV: ESPN+

Kent State vs Georgia key injuries

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Kent State vs Georgia weather

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