The Virginia Cavaliers will aim for their third straight win when they take on the N.C. State Wolfpack in ACC action Saturday afternoon from Carter-Finley Stadium. The Cavaliers registered a 27-3 home win against Louisville last week, and the Wolfpack handled Marshall 37-20 in their latest action. This marks the first meeting between these two schools since 2012 in a game Virginia won 33-6.
Cavaliers Crush Louisville in Conference Opener
The Virginia Cavaliers enter this battle full of confidence after opening their conference schedule with a convincing 27-3 home win against Louisville last week to improve to 3-1. Bryce Perkins was outstanding, recording 197 passing yards with two TD’s, and he added a team-high 78 rushing yards. The junior QB is having a tremendous season in his first year as the Cavaliers starting QB, accumulating 867 passing yards with a 9:2 TD to INT ratio, and he has also collected 317 rushing yards. Jordan Ellis only rushed for 68 yards last week, however, he has rushed for over 140 yards in two of four games this season, and he has a total of 448 rushing yards on the season. Cavaliers’ leading receiver Olamide Zaccheaus is one to watch in this matchup. The senior WR has already notched 392 receiving yards, and he could be in for a big game against a subpar pass defense this week. The Cavaliers offense has scored at least 27 points in three of their four games led by a potent running game.
The Virginia defense completely stifled the Louisville offense last week, limiting them to 214 total yards. The Cavs’ defense has been sharp in three of their four contests which includes a strong rush defense that is up against a weak running game this week. Virginia is currently averaging 32.5 points, ranking them 59th in the country. The Cavaliers defense is holding opponents to 16.8 points, good for 22nd overall.
Wolfpack Defeat Marshall to Improve to 3-0
The N.C. State Wolfpack head into their ACC opener with a perfect 3-0 record which included a 37-20 road win against Marshall last week. Ryan Finley was terrific, racking up 377 passing yards with one TD. The senior QB has tallied at least 300 passing yards in all three games, and he has accrued 1056 passing yards with a 5:1 TD to INT ratio on the season. Reggie Gallaspy II had his best game of the season last week, rushing for 81 yards and two TD’s. The senior RB is up to 175 rushing yards in three games on the season. Wolfpack’ top receiver Kelvin Harmon has tallied over 100 receiving yards in two of three games, and he is up to 312 receiving yards on the season. N.C. State has received outstanding production from a potent passing game in their three games, and they rank 32nd in the nation with an average of 479 total yards per game.
The Wolfpack defense was sharp against Marshall last week, conceding only 324 total yards. Their rush defense has been their greatest defensive strength which included only 54 rushing yards against Marshall last week. N.C. State is currently averaging 34 points per game, ranking them 54th in the country. The Wolfpack are holding opponents to an average of 13.3 points in three games, good for ninth in the nation.
The N.C. State Wolfpack are:
- 3-7 ATS in their last 10 home games.
- under is 13-3 in their last 16 conference games.
- under is 10-3 in their last 13 games overall.
The Virginia Cavaliers are:
- 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games overall.
- 6-0 ATS in their last 6 September games.
- 8-2 ATS in their last 10 games against a team with a winning record.
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
I am taking the points with Virginia in this contest. Virginia’s defense has been outstanding in all areas, and they should be able to neutralize the Wolfpack’ offense. The Cavaliers feature a solid pass defense that is holding opponents to an average of 184 passing yards per game, and the Wolfpack rely on their passing game to generate a good portion of their offense. Furthermore, Virginia QB Bryce Perkins has already tossed nine TD’s in four games, and the Wolfpack conceded 270 passing yards to a freshman QB against Marshall last week. In addition, Virginia also features a potent running game that ranks 33rd in the nation, and they will challenge a N.C. State defense that has enjoyed a reasonably easy schedule this season.
Prediction: Virginia Cavaliers +6.5
Full-Game Total Pick
The under is a solid option in this ACC matchup. This contest features two strong defensive teams, and I anticipate a low-scoring conference battle. Virginia is holding opponents to an average of only 297 total yards per game, and they limited Louisville to three points in their conference opener, plus the under is 4-1 in their last five games following an ATS win. Furthermore, N.C. State features a strong rush defense that is limiting opponents to only 108 rushing yards per game. They should at least contain a strong Virginia running game, plus the under is 5-1 in their last six home games.
Prediction: Under 53.5
Full-Game Prop Bet
I am taking the under on the Wolfpack team total. While N.C. State’s offensive stats look decent on paper, they have faced three weak defensive teams. They only scored 24 points in their season opener against James Madison who doesn’t even play in the FBS. The Wolfpack are only averaging 3.4 rushing yards per carry, and while they do have a strong passing game, they are up against a strong secondary.
Prediction: N.C. State Team Total: Under
Half-Time Side Pick
I am taking N.C. State on the halftime line. The Wolfpack have scored more points in the first half compared to the second half in three games this season. They are averaging a solid 20 points in the first half. In addition N.C. State is holding their opponents to an average of only seven points in the opening half this season.
Prediction: N.C. State -3.5
Half-Time Total Bet
The under on the halftime line is worth a look. While I do expect some offense from N.C. State in the first half, I anticipate a low-scoring game throughout this contest. Virginia is holding opponents to only 12.8 points in the first half. The Cavaliers also only scored nine points in the first half in their lone road game of the season in Indiana in week two.
Prediction: Under 27.5
Half-Time Prop Prediction
I am taking the Wolfpack to score first. N.C. State is holding opponents to an average of only 4.7 points in the first quarter this season. In addition Virginia did not score in the first quarter on their home field last week.
Prediction: Team to Score First: N.C. State -138