Dean Legge/Dawg Post

Numbers Show UGA Should Beat USC

ATHENS - No matter than the game has moved a day, the numbers dictate that UGA should beat South Carolina on Sunday.

The Bulldogs are listed as a seven-point favorite to beat the home-standing Gamecocks - that’s a significant spread. 70% of teams listed as 7-point favorites go on to straight up win the games they are playing. Meanwhile the money line has shifted towards the Bulldogs again and now sits at a near high for the week: UGA -290. Teams with that number win 74% of their games.

In the last 20 seasons, South Carolina has been a home underdog 42 times and has gone 7-35 in those contests (16%). The Gamecocks are 2-17 as 7-point or more underdogs (10%). The two wins, however, were significant. 

Unranked South Carolina beat No. 9 UGA 21-10 in Columbia tanks to Quincy Carter’s miserable performance - 10 for 24 with 5 interceptions. It was South Carolina’s second win in a row after losing 21 straight. The Gamecocks stormed the field and tore down the goal posts to celebrate the victory for a second week in a row. 

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Ten years later, No. 19 South Carolina gave defending national champs and No. 1 Alabama a 35-21 beating in Williams-Brice - that’s tied for the worst loss of Nick Saban’s career in Tuscoloosa. The Cocks went on to win their only division championship in school history later that season.

But for the most part, South Carolina (understandably) has struggled to win as a home underdog. Georgia has done a pretty good job of winning as a road favorite over the last two decades. The Bulldogs are 49-9 as road favorites (83%). In situations where UGA is favored by seven points or more on the road, the Bulldogs are 26-3 (89%). 

The Bulldogs haven’t lost a road game as seven-point-or-more favorite since losing 24-20 at Kentucky in 2006 (Matthew Stafford threw three interceptions; including one into the end zone; and UGA had an extra point blocked). In that game, too, fans rushed he field and tore down the goal posts. 

The Bulldogs and Gamecocks have split the last ten meetings in Columbia, with Carolina winning the last three games in their state’s capital. Still, this season the Gamecocks are struggling mightily to score. USC is planning on playing two quarterbacks on Saturday - neither of them has led the Cocks to any offensive production. 

Carolina has yet to score more than 20 points this season. Only twice times in their last eight home games have the Chickens scored 23 points or more. Carolina is a combined 3-8 since Steve Spurrier quit mid season last year. Needless to say, South Carolina isn't what it used to be - that’s clear.

The numbers may say that UGA has anywhere from a 70 - 74% chance of winning this game, but its probably slightly higher - more like 78 - 80%. Make not mistake - Georgia should win this game… no matter when its played.

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