Georgia Heavily Favored Over Notre Dame in Premier Week 4 College Football Matchup
Posted on: September 21, 2019, 01:00h.
Last updated on: September 20, 2019, 10:21h.
No. 3 Georgia is a two-touchdown favorite over No. 7 Notre Dame in the top matchup of Week 4 of the college football season.
FanDuel Sportsbook has the Bulldogs as a 14.5-point pick over a Fighting Irish team that feels like it is once again being underrated by the national media.
Georgia, Notre Dame Both Have Plenty to Prove
Notre Dame finished the regular season undefeated last year, but took a beating in the College Football Playoff semifinals, losing 30-3 to eventual national champion Clemson. That led to questions from many over whether the Irish deserved as much credit in the rankings as they were getting as an independent team that didn’t have to play a conference championship game.
Georgia may have been the school with the loudest complaints. The Bulldogs were ranked fifth in the final College Football Playoff rankings last season after an 11-2 season that ended with a heartbreaking 35-28 loss to Alabama in the SEC Championship Game. Many Georgia players felt they were more deserving of a playoff spot than Notre Dame even with their two losses – though the Bulldogs didn’t help their case by losing to Texas in the Sugar Bowl.
But while both teams may have underwhelmed in the postseason last year, it is Notre Dame that has received the lion’s share of the scrutiny.
We always have something to prove,” Notre Dame defensive end Adetokunbo Ogundeji told ESPN. “We’re focused on the Notre Dame 2019 team, and we’re not worried about anything outside the locker room. We’re Notre Dame. We’re at the highest level. That’s just how it is, and all the teams are looking out for us, so we’ve got to step it up each and every game.”
Both teams come into the game 2-0, and both are dealing with turnover at key positions after last season. And while Georgia is both at home and may have a slight talent advantage, the Irish are probably right that they’re being underrated, something that bettors may want to consider, given the huge spread being offered.
Critical Week 4 Matchups in Big Ten, SEC
Two other key Week 4 matchups feature top 25 teams facing off in conference play.
In the Big Ten, the No. 13 Wisconsin Badgers (2-0) will host the No. 11 Michigan Wolverines (2-0) in the latest meeting between these long-time Midwestern rivals. Wisconsin has been installed as a 3.5-point favorite after two dominant performances against overmatched teams, in which the Badgers outscored South Florida and Central Michigan by a combined mark of 110-0.
Michigan hasn’t had things so easy. In their home opener, some were surprised to see the Wolverines only manage a 40-21 win over a pesky Middle Tennessee squad. Their week two performance only raised further questions, as Army came to town and nearly pulled off an upset before Michigan won 24-21 in overtime. While Michigan’s opponents were undoubtedly tougher than those faced by the Badgers, the Wolverines will need to step things up significantly to win on Saturday.
Down in SEC country, No. 17 Texas A&M (2-1) plays host to No. 8 Auburn (3-0) in a must-win game for both sides if they have dreams of competing for a spot in the College Football Playoff this year. Auburn may be a 3.5-point underdog on the road, but the Tigers already have one big win over Oregon this year, and they might be the better team on a neutral field, meaning this could be an upset in the making.