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College Football Odds: South Carolina vs. Arkansas prediction, odds, pick – 9/10/2022

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The South Carolina Gamecocks take on the Arkansas Razorbacks. Check out our college football odds series for our South Carolina Arkansas prediction and pick.

The South Carolina Gamecocks are a notable national story in college football because of their quarterback. Spencer Rattler, who entered 2021 with the expectation that he would lead the Oklahoma Sooners to the national championship game against Alabama or Georgia, did not make the grade under coach Lincoln Riley. Rattler just couldn’t put the pieces together with the Sooners, and Riley inserted Caleb Williams as the starting quarterback midway through the season. Riley had an assistant at Oklahoma named Shane Beamer. He became South Carolina’s head coach after the 2020 season. He had a connection with Rattler due to their shared presence at Oklahoma. When Rattler entered the transfer portal, South Carolina became a natural choice for a landing spot. Beamer closed the sale and found a quarterback who generated a lot of excitement and optimism in Columbia.

South Carolina overachieved in Beamer’s first season. The Gamecocks were not expected to make a bowl, but they did. They were not expected to beat North Carolina in their bowl game, but they did. Now they’re trying to see how high they can climb with Beamer as coach and Rattler as quarterback.

The Rattler era did not get off to a smooth start in Week 1 against Georgia State. Rattler threw two interceptions, and South Carolina needed two blocked punts for touchdowns to win that game by a 35-14 score. The South Carolina offense tallied only 21 points against Georgia State. Rattler knows he has to be much, much better versus Arkansas.

The Arkansas Razorbacks posted one of the more impressive wins in college football in Week 1, beating Cincinnati in one of the few games involving two top-25 teams. The Razorbacks’ defense stood tall when Cincinnati got inside the Arkansas 40-yard line. The Hogs defended their own third of the field and were able to protect a lead because they established a running game in the second half against the Bearcats, who reached the College Football Playoff last season.

Arkansas coach Sam Pittman continues to develop the Razorbacks. They were at rock-bottom when he took over a few years ago. The first season didn’t involve many wins, but player development was evident and substantial. The fruits of that player development emerged in a nine-win 2021 season. Now Arkansas is trying to get to 10 wins and a New Year’s Six bowl game. This game is a must for UA if it wants to reach those goals.

Courtesy of FanDuel, here are the South Carolina-Arkansas College Football odds.

College Football Odds: South Carolina-Arkansas Odds

South Carolina: +8.5 (-110)

Arkansas: -8.5 (-110)

Over: 52.5 (-110)

Under: 52.5 (-110)

Why South Carolina Could Cover the Spread

Spencer Rattler needed to get one game under his belt at South Carolina. Some shaky play and overall rust were entirely understandable. Now that the first-game jitters are behind him, Rattler can settle down and play up to his potential. If he does, South Carolina should easily cover the spread. The Gamecocks are not going to lose by more than a touchdown — and they might win outright — if Rattler plays to his potential. South Carolina will thrive in the red zone, unlike the Cincinnati offense which moved the ball against Arkansas but failed to finish drives.

Why Arkansas Could Cover the Spread

After beating Cincinnati, Arkansas should be full of confidence. Second, we have to question whether Spencer Rattler is going to reach (or at least come close to) the ceiling of his potential with South Carolina. Third, it’s still very early in the season. Rattler might need more than one week to feel comfortable in Shane Beamer’s offense. Fourth, South Carolina is not going to block two punts for touchdowns in this game. The Gamecocks aren’t going to block one punt. They won’t get free points from their special teams unit.

South Carolina allowed 200 rushing yards to Georgia State. That’s a big red flag heading into a game against an Arkansas team which loves to mash the ball between the tackles. The matchup’s particularities fit the Hogs and not the Gamecocks.

Final South Carolina-Arkansas Prediction & Pick

The Arkansas running game is likely to control everything about this contest. Unless Rattler plays a tremendous game — which is not likely — Arkansas should win decisively.

Final South Carolina-Arkansas Prediction & Pick: Arkansas -8.5