College football betting preview schedule
Bet: Georgia over 11 wins (-130)
Best case: The Bulldogs essentially caught every break possible with their schedule, avoiding most of the SEC teams that took a step forward this offseason. Tennessee might be UGA's toughest opponent, but the Bulldogs host that showdown in Athens. A road game against Kentucky figures to be their toughest game, but they will likely be double-digit favorites. Plus, the defending champs have reloaded at the positions that lost talent to the NFL, and QB Stetson Bennett returns for a team that averaged 40 points to accompany a stout defense.
Worst case: Georgia is an elite program, but it still lacks a recent history of undefeated seasons. Additionally, the calling card is defense and the Dawgs lost defensive coordinator Dan Lanning to Oregon. Coincidentally, Georgia opens the season against Lanning and the Ducks, and he might have some tricks up his sleeve. As for the rest of the schedule, Tennessee's offense will be significantly better and a trip to Kentucky could pose problems. While Bennett did play quite well in the College Football Playoff and helped UGA win a title, are we convinced he can't significantly regress? Keep in mind he's a QB for a marquee program that many expect to run the table, but he's still a 60-1 Heisman Trophy long shot. That says a lot.
Betting spin: Thanks to a favorable schedule, I find it hard to believe that Georgia will lose two regular-season games. This wager is likely a push, but 12 wins are much more likely than 10 or fewer, even with the -130 juice. The Bulldogs have lost a lot from their title team, including top overall NFL draft pick Travon Walker, but they still churn out five-star recruits. Kirby Smart is a Nick Saban disciple and won't allow a championship hangover like the one we saw with Ed Orgeron and LSU.