Auburn followed up its 62-0 thrashing of Alabama State by falling short on the road last week against No. 10-ranked Penn State. The Tigers come into their final non-conference game of the season with a 2-1 overall record. Meanwhile, Georgia State is trying to build some confidence after snapping a two-game skid with a win over Charlotte last weekend. The Bulldogs come in with a 1-2 record through three games with their two losses coming by an average of 37.5 points.
Will Georgia State be able to keep up against a hungry Tigers team on Saturday afternoon?
Grainger throws two TDs, leads Georgia State to win vs. CharlotteGeorgia State won its first game of the season last weekend, knocking off Charlotte 20-9 behind a clutch performance from junior quarterback Darren Grainger. Grainger completed just six passes on the night but finished with 139 yards and two touchdowns, including the go-ahead touchdown to Ja’Cyais Credie in the third quarter to help the Panthers escape with the win. Destin Coates rushed four times for 83 yards while Jamari Thrash caught two passes for 62 yards and a touchdown in the win.
The performance by Grainger should be enough for him to earn an extended look under center moving forward. The Panthers opened the season with last year’s starter Cornelius Brown IV under center but made the switch after a pair of subpar games. Grainger added 50 rushing yards on the ground, making him a good fit for Georgia State’s option-oriented attack.
On defense, the Panthers come in allowing 37 points and 413 yards of total offense per game. Georgia State has been most vulnerable on the ground, giving up 192.3 rushing yards per game, which ranks 109th in the FBS.
Nix, Auburn come up short on the road at Penn StateAuburn is fresh off of a tough 28-20 loss on the road against No. 10-Penn State last weekend. Tank Bigsby carried the load with 23 carries for 102 yards and two touchdowns while Bo Nix completed 21-of-37 passes for 185 yards in the loss. Nix and the offense failed to convert on fourth-and-goal from the 2-yard line with just over three minutes remaining in regulation. While Nix had many different options on the play call, the play resulted in an incomplete pass to Kobe Hudson on a fade route that wasn’t even close.
Nix hasn’t been flashy but he’s progressed as a passer in 2021. The junior quarterback has completed a career-best 65.8 percent of his passes with five touchdowns and zero interceptions through three games.
Meanwhile, Bigsby leads a rushing offense that comes in averaging a healthy 287.3 rushing yards per game, which ranks seventh in the country. The 6-foot, 208-pound running back has compiled at least 100 rushing yards in each of the first three games of the season. He comes in with 343 yards and four touchdowns on the ground already this year.
On defense, Auburn has been among the stingiest units in the country through three games. The Tigers have given up just 12.7 points per game, good for 13th in the FBS. They have limited opposing offenses to just 250 yards of total offense per contest, 13th in the FBS.
Auburn also ranks third in the country against the run, allowing just 45.7 rushing yards per game.
- Panthers are 3-9-1 ATS in their last 13 games following an ATS loss.
- Panthers are 2-6-2 ATS in their last 10 games in September.
- Panthers are 2-8-1 ATS in their last 11 games after allowing more than 40 points in their previous game.
- Tigers are 7-1 ATS in their last 8 games in September.
- Tigers are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 home games vs. a team with a losing road record.
- Tigers are 13-3 ATS in their last 16 games as a home favorite.
Best Bets for this Game
Full-Game Side Bet
After playing Georgia State, Auburn will open the SEC season by playing four of its next five games against nationally-ranked opponents. The Tigers showed up on the road in a white-out game at Penn State last week and should be able to bounce back in a big way in their final non-conference game of the season. Georgia State relies on running the ball to move the chains on offense but the Panthers will likely have a tough time doing so against an Auburn defense that ranks third in the country versus the run this year. Take the Tigers to cover the spread at home in this lopsided matchup on Saturday.
Full-Game Total Pick
It’s hard to imagine the Panthers doing much on offense in a road game against one of the best defenses in the country. In three games, Georgia State has failed to score more than 20 points and comes in averaging a pedestrian 15.7 points per game. The Panthers also get nearly 60 percent of their total offense by rushing the football, which is something they simply won’t be able to do this week. After putting up 60 points or more in each of the first two games of the year, Auburn will likely have to carry the load once again to get this game over the projected total here. Look for this game to stay under the projected total on Saturday afternoon.