The Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets earned a place at the table in Nashville after finishing 7-5, which was good enough for fourth place in the ACC Coastal Division.
But it wasn't good enough to earn favorite status on the Music City Bowl odds men, as the Ole Miss Rebels opened as chalk after finishing fifth in the toughest division in the country—the SEC West.
Ole Miss has been a solid bowl bet at 7-1-1 against the spread, unlike Georgia Tech.
Music City Bowl point spread: Rebels opened as 4-point favorites; the total was 56. (Line updates and matchup report)
Odds Shark computer prediction: 39.2-32.0 Yellow Jackets
Why Ole Miss can cover the Music City Bowl spread
The Ole Miss Rebels (7-5) may have the most impressive 7-5 record in all of college football, having faced the gauntlet of the SEC, including five ranked teams. Four of their five losses came to teams that finished in the top 15 in the nation.
The Rebels' front seven, which allows 155 rushing yards per game, will need to be stout against the Yellow Jackets’ option attack. Ole Miss has been given over a month to prepare for it, and will shut down Georgia Tech’s running game and force them to pass the ball—where the Yellow Jackets rank 118th in the country.
Why Georgia Tech can cover the Music City Bowl spread
Georgia Tech enters the Music City Bowl ranked fifth in the country in rushing, with 311.7 yards per game on the ground. The Yellow Jackets are also elite at stopping the run, ranking ninth in the NCAA, so they will control the tempo of the game.
Monster pass-rusher Jeremiah Attaochu, who finished the year with 12 sacks, will wreak havoc on the Rebels’ passing attack. Despite only throwing for 1,414 yards, sophomore quarterback Vad Lee is a playmaker that can make things happen with his arm or his feet.
Lee accounted for 18 total touchdowns, including two passing and two rushing in Georgia Tech’s season finale against Georgia.
The computer likes Georgia Tech in a Music City Bowl upset (39-32).
The triple-option offense works so well in college football because of its complexity, and the little amount of preparation time given each week. That gets thrown out the window during bowl season when teams are given over a month to prepare. Before defeating USC last year, the Yellow Jackets had lost seven straight bowls.
That is magnified even more because of Ole Miss’ great execution in bowls recently, going 7-1-1 against the spread in the last nine. The Rebels’ 24th-ranked passing attack led by Bo Wallace will put up points, and Georgia Tech’s offense just isn't built for a shootout.
Ole Miss wins, and covers the three points.
The Music City Bowl betting history is marked by a profitable run on UNDERs and that number was holding steady at 56.5 in early wagering.
- Eight of the past 12 Music City Bowls played UNDER
- Ole Miss is 7-1-1 ATS past nine bowl games
- Georgia Tech is 1-5 ATS past six bowl games
- OVER is 7-1 past eight Yellow Jackets games in 2013