The Appalachian State Mountaineers (7-1) head to Columbia this weekend for an inter-conference clash with the South Carolina Gamecocks (4-5). Kickoff is set for 7:00 PM EST on November 9th at Williams-Brice Stadium and the game will be televised on ESPN2.
Taking a look at the Week 11 college football odds, South Carolina opened as a 4.5-point home favorite earlier this week. The spread has increased by a full point after early betting, as the Gamecocks are currently available at -5.5. The total for the game is sitting at 52 points.
Vegas Betting Preview & Game Odds: South Carolina vs App State
Appalachian State lost their first game of the season last Thursday, falling 24-21 at home against Georgia Southern despite being favored by over two two touchdowns. The Mountaineers gave up 14 unanswered points in the third quarter and never recovered, coming up a field goal short on the scoreboard as time expired. QB Zac Thomas went 25/51 for 271 passing yards and three touchdowns through the air while also adding five carries for 37 rushing yards on the ground. The receiving duo of Malik Williams and Corey Sutton really performed well, combining for 156 yards and three touchdowns on 14 total receptions. Overall, Appalachian State gained well over 400 total yards of offense and found the end zone three times despite the loss.
The Mountaineers had an average outing on the other side of the ball against Georgia Southern, giving up just over 300 total yards of offense and three touchdowns. Appalachian State really struggled to contain Eagles RB Wesley Kennedy III on the ground, as he racked up 145 rushing yards and two touchdowns on only 13 carries.
South Carolina snapped a two game losing streak last weekend, beating Vanderbilt 24-7 at home to improve to 4-5 on the season overall. The Gamecocks scored 14 unanswered points in the second quarter to take the lead and never looked back, completely shutting out the Commodores offense the rest of the way. QB Ryan Hilinski went 24/31 for 235 passing yards and two touchdowns while RB Deshaun Fenwick rumbled for 102 rushing yards on 18 carries. Bryan Edwards led the way for the receiving corps, exploding for 139 yards and a touchdown on a game-high 14 catches. As a whole, South Carolina generated well over 400 total yards of offense and scored three touchdowns in the victory.
The Gamecocks were very solid defensively against Vanderbilt, holding the Commodores to well under 250 total yards of offense. South Carolina was especially strong defending against the pass, as they only allowed 76 yards through the air and recorded two interceptions.
NCAA Football Betting Predictions & Free Pick: South Carolina -5.5
This is actually a pretty tough spot, as there doesn’t appear to be a ton of value on either side against the spread. However, as long as the number doesn’t move up at all before kickoff, I’m leaning slightly towards taking the Gamecocks to cover at home here in Week 11. While Appalachian State has the much superior record overall, they also play in the Sun Belt Conference and have had a much easier schedule up to this point. The only thing that concerns me a little bit is how both teams fared against North Carolina, as Appalachian State beat the Tar Heels by a field goal in late September while South Carolina was on the wrong end of a 24-20 scoreline back in Week 1. Still, it’s really hard to bet against a team that knocked off #6 overall Georgia on the road just a couple of weeks ago. They also hung tough against #10 overall Florida the following weekend, appearing to be well on their way to a second consecutive massive upset before giving up three touchdowns in the fourth quarter.
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Both teams have performed pretty well against the spread so far this season, going a combined 10-7 ATS. However, South Carolina has really played well at home as of late, covering the number in three out of their last four games at Williams-Brice Stadium. The Gamecocks have also dominated opponents from the Sun Belt Conference in recent years, going a perfect 11-0 outright. On the other side, Appalachian State is a brutal 0-7 straight up against opponents from the SEC. I’m going to lay the 5.5 points and roll with the home favorite to grind out a tough cover on Saturday evening in what should be a pretty entertaining matchup. Give me South Carolina!