Liberty Bowl: Georgia vs TCU

Last Updated: 2017-08-30

The Georgia Bulldogs had a less than satisfying season under first year head coach Kirby Smart, who was celebrated as the Savior of the Program after taking over for Mark Richt, who was considered low energy and out of ideas while the TCU Horned Frogs are also limping into the Liberty Bowl after one of the most disappointing seasons in the head coach Gary Patterson era. 

The Georgia Bulldogs will face the TCU Horned Frogs in the AutoZone Liberty Bowl at Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium in Memphis, Tennessee on Friday, December 30th on ESPN. 

Liberty Bowl Odds

The Georgia Bulldogs opened as a one point favorite over the TCU Horned Frogs with a total of 49. 

Georgia Bulldogs vs. TCU Horned Frogs Game Preview

The TCU Horned Frogs are 6-6 straight up and 3-9 against the spread with 7 out of their 12 games going under the total.  The Horned Frogs lost two out of their last three games with all three of those games going under the total. 

What is most disturbing about the Horned Frogs is their dramatic drop in defense, which has always been one of their strengths and a Patterson specialty going back to his days as a defensive coordinator.  TCU has national rankings of 74th for total defense, 84th for pass defense, 72nd for rushing defense, and 61st for scoring defense.  The offense is mediocre and ranks 50th in the nation for scoring defense. 

The Georgia Bulldogs are 7-5 straight up and 5-7 against the spread with seven out of their 12 games going under the total.  The Bulldogs ended the season with an unforgivable 28-27 home loss to Georgia Tech as 4.5 point favorite in which they blew a 10 point fourth quarter lead.  It is the type of loss that burns up a lot of goodwill for a coach and certainly ended what was left of Smart’s honeymoon as the new UGA coach. 

Georgia has a lackluster offense that has national rankings of 89th overall and 106th for scoring.  The Bulldogs did fare better on defense with national rankings of 17th overall and 41st for points allowed. 

Smart arrived with great fanfare as an Alum and former player at Georgia and as the fantasy coach for UGA fans over the past few years as Richt failed to get the team into the Promised Land.  Smart was also celebrated as a defensive “genius” having served as defensive coordinator for the Alabama Crimson Tide under Nick Saban.  How much control he had at Bama remains a question as Saban is the defensive coach and is well known for being very hands on.

Game Trends

The TCU Horned Frogs have won nine out of their last 11 games as a dog with seven out of their last 11 games as a dog going over the total. 

The Georgia Bulldogs have lost five out of their last seven games as a favorite with four out of their last six games as a chalk going over the total. 

Liberty Bowl Picks

I will take TCU to win this contest.

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