Music City Bowl Odds
The Vanderbilt Commodores (8-4, 5-3 SEC) take on the NC State Wolfpack (7-5, 4-4 ACC) in the 2012 Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl. This game takes place on Monday, December 31st and will be nationally televised on ESPN at 12:00 EST. Taking a look at the odds for all the bowl games, I find a spread of Vanderbilt -7 over NC State and a total set of 52 points.
Why Vanderbilt Covers
The Commodores head into the Music City Bowl as one of the hottest teams in the country. Once again, head coach James Franklin has gotten his team to exceed expectations by winning eight games when they were picked at or near the bottom of the SEC East once again. Instead, they won five conference games, which is a huge accomplishment.
Vanderbilt went 6-0 straight up and 5-1 against the spread in its final six games. Its victories included a 40-0 win at Kentucky, a 27-26 win at Ole Miss, and a dominant 41-18 home victory over Tennessee. It capped off the regular season with a 55-21 triumph at Wake Forest. Meanwhile, NC State has lost three of its last five games coming in with its only victories over lowly Wake Forest and Boston College.
NC State is a terrible running team, so it relies very heavily on quarterback Mike Glennon to move the football offensively. The Commodores clearly have the antidote for the Wolfpack’s passing attack. They rank 9th in the country in passing defense, limiting teams to just 175.8 yards per game and 52.0 percent completions through the air.
There’s no question that the Commodores have a huge edge on defense in this one. They are only giving up 18.2 points per game while ranking 17th in the country in total defense at 326.4 yards per game. NC State is allowing 24.6 points per game, including 34.8 per game on the road, while ranking 79th in total defense at 419.7 yards per game.
Why NC State Covers
Oddsmakers realize that the betting public is going to want to back Vanderbilt when they realize how strong they finished the season. As a result, there could certainly be some line value here with NC State catching a touchdown.
The Commodores were only favored by more than 6.5 points three times this season. Those situations came against Presbyterian, UMass and Wake Forest. Clearly, those three teams are nowhere near as strong as NC State.
Senior quarterback Mike Glennon leads an NC State passing attack that ranks 20th in the country at 304.0 yards per game. This is easily the best passing offense that the Commodores will have faced all season as their defensive numbers against the pass are inflated due to facing so many weak attacks. Glennon has thrown for 3,648 yards and 30 touchdowns to 14 interceptions on the season.
The Wolfpack are 23-11-2 against the spread in their last 36 games following an ATS win. NC State is 4-0-1 against the spread in its last 5 bowl games. The Wolfpack are 7-3-1 against the spread in their last 11 vs. a team with a winning record. This is a team that beat Florida State 17-16 to show what it is capable of.
I picked Vanderbilt to win this game in my 2012-13 bowl predictions. Check out this page to find the all 35 of my bowl picks. You may also want to know who Jimmy Boyd, Carolina Sports, Vegas Top Cappers, and Brandon Lee have selected in the Music City Bowl.