📅 Date: Monday, January, 02
🕚 Game Time: 5 ET
📺 How To Watch: ESPN
No. 8 Utah and No.11 Penn State will meet on Monday, in Pasadena’s Rose Bowl. With a win of 47-24 against USC the Utes secured their second consecutive trip to the Rose Bowl. Penn State finished the regular season on a winning streak of four games and lost only twice to Michigan and Ohio State during the season.
Betting on college football makes the game even more fun to watch. If you want to bet on this titanic matchup, check out our US football betting sites for betting on Oklahoma/Florida State!
Utah came into the season with College Football Playoff ambitions but will be content with a second consecutive trip to the Rose Bowl. The Utes started the year with a loss at Florida, and also suffered losses against UCLA and Oregon. The Utes closed the regular season with an impressive 63-21 win over Colorado. They then put together a great second half in their 47-24 victory against then-No. 4 USC knocking the Trojans out of the College Football Playoff race. Utah lost to Ohio State in the Rose Bowl on a late field goal last season. The Utes will now be looking for another chance to win one the most prestigious sports games.
This season, QB Cameron Rising is back and leads an offense which averaged 42.3 points per contest in their last three games. Rising has thrown for almost 3,000 yards passing and 25 touchdowns. His QBR (82.9) ranks within the top 10 in the nation. Tavion Thomas, running back, led the rush attack with 687 yards. However, he sustained a toe injury and has declared for the NFL draft. He will therefore miss this game. Backup Micah Bernard is second on the team, with 474 yards. He will have plenty of opportunities Monday.
Penn State was perhaps the most overlooked college football team this season. Both losses were against teams in the College Football Playoff (Michigan and Ohio State). The Nittany Lions closed the regular season with a winning streak of four games, beating Indiana, Maryland, Rutgers, and Michigan State. Veteran quarterback Sean Clifford will be Penn State’s most successful important player. He is a four-year starter and has thrown for 10,382 yards and 84 touchdowns.
In each of his five last performances, Clifford threw touchdowns. His biggest target this season was sophomore wide receiver Parker Washington. He caught 46 passes for 611 yards with two touchdowns. But he will miss this game. Kaytron Allen and Nicholas Singleton are the rushing attack’s leaders, with nearly 1,800 yards rushing and 19 touchdowns. It’s great to have a defense as good as Penn State’s. Their opponents were held to an average of 18 points per match, but this number dropped to 13.7 in the final three games. Joey Porter Jr., a star cornerback, opted out of the bowl match.
This prediction has a lot to do with which players are opting out of this game. However, I believe Utah will be focused going into the game, and Penn State will have the most significant losses. The Utes finished last year in the Rose Bowl, which gives the a leg up experience wise. They covered the spread in four of their last five regular-season games, which was an impressive feat. The offense at Penn State will be without its wide receiver and defense without its top cornerback. Under coach Kyle Whittingham’s watch, Utah is 11-4 in bowl games. I expect another win for the Utes on Monday.
If you are betting on the Utes to cover, the payoff will be solid, not great, and I think the Utes will cover this game. For example, a few days before the game, the odds are averaging -110 if you are betting on the Utes to cover. If you bet 100 on the Utes -2, the payout would be around 91 dollars, which means you would get back the 100 you bet and the other 91 for winning the bet.
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