The season is finally upon us. The last weekend without Alabama football has now come and gone, and we can look forward to a Saturday of SEC and Alabama football.
Unfortunately for Missouri, this Alabama football team looks to be one of the best squads in the Nick Saban Era. While it may seem like a biased assumption, I can assure you that the sentiment is shared throughout the college football universe. Straight ahead I will go over some prop bets for the upcoming game and give you my thoughts and predictions on how I would wager on each.
As of 21 September, the spread stands at -27 points in favor of Alabama. Personally I wouldn’t bet on Alabama to cover. We have seen Alabama in various season openers fail to beat the spread, no matter if the opponent is Duke or Florida State. But luckily,, beating the spread is not the same as besting the opponent, and Alabama has went a very long time without losing a season opener (knock on wood). Alabama will take a little while to get things rolling. It’s to be expected in an opener to a season that saw no Spring competition.
The over/under for the Bama-Mizzou contest currently sits at 55.0 points. I would take the under due to the style of play I expect to see from Alabama. I stand to expect a return to a ground and pound offense utilizing the three-headed beast of Najee Harris, Brian Robinson Jr, and Trey Sanders. With a backfield like that I would be hard-pressed to locate a team capable of stopping them. I dont expect to see the air attack we saw under Tua Tagovailoa.
Mac Jones Passing Yds O/U
If your sports book has this option, let me know, mine did not. With that said, I will set this myself according to my own expectations. My prediction for passing yards for Mac Jones is around 260 yards. I dont expect him to air it out all that much, and I estimate we will see him attempt 25 passes or less. As long as he is able to manage the game, keep turnovers minimal, and throw when he needs to everything will be fine.
Team Rushing O/U
This is one area that I feel like the Tide will roll. The offensive line this season boasts incredible size, allowing for the moving of opposing linemen at will. Coupled with the outstanding backfield I do not see this running game being stopped too often at any time this year, provided everybody stays healthy. My figure for team rushing yards stands at 165.
The Tide defense has a number of big-time guys this year. Dylan Moses is finally healthy, and we all know how instrumental he would have been last year. But, there are a couple of freshmen that are coming in making an impact quickly. Malachi Moore is listed on the depth chart as Alabama’s starter at Star (Nickel). King Mwikuta will provide depth at the LB position that shouldn’t regress any while the starters are off the field resting. Due to this, I believe that Missouri will be held to under 200 yards passing and under 80 yards rushing.
Final Score Prediction
Weighing all factors in an attempt to remain unbiased, I’ve come to a decision on my final score prediction. Last season I was 9-3 during the regular season against the spread. Im hoping to improve on that number this year.
Final: Alabama 31 Missouri 9
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Layne Gerbig covers all sports at The University of Alabama on behalf of Tide Talk Sports. Follow him on Twitter @DeutscheBammer, and don’t forget to check back on this website for regular updates!