Photo Credit: Eric Francis

Huskers Open as a Double-Digit Favorite over Georgia Southern

September 04, 2022

For the third time this season, Nebraska is a double-digit favorite. The Huskers opened at -22 at Circa Sports for Saturday’s matchup against Georgia Southern.

This is the first meeting between Nebraska (1-1, 0-1) and Georgia Southern (1-0), a former I-AA powerhouse and current member of the Sun Belt. The Eagles took care of business Saturday in Clay Helton’s coaching debut in Statesboro.

After a scoreless first quarter, Georgia Southern rolled to a 59-7 win over Morgan State, out-yarding the Bears 500-250. (It was a great day for round numbers.) Transfer quarterback Kyle Vantrease threw for 367 yards (29-for-46) and four touchdowns with an interception. He’ll be making his second start at Memorial Stadium after facing the Huskers as Buffalo’s quarterback in 2021. The Blackshirts limited Vantrease to 27-of-50 passing for 224 yards with an interception and no touchdowns.

The Eagles’ defense forced three takeaways, including three interceptions, as Georgia Southern scored 21 points off turnovers.

The Huskers enter a game coming off a win for the first time since last October. Nebraska shook off a sluggish first half against North Dakota for a 38-17 win. Nebraska is 0-2 against the spread in 2022, losing by three to Northwestern as a 12-point favorite and beating the Fighting Hawks by 21 after the closing line ballooned to -28 (from an opening number of -22.5). That dropped Nebraska to 21-25 (.456) against the spread since 2018, Scott Frost’s first season in Lincoln. The Huskers are also 6-8 (.428) against the spread coming off a win and 4-6 (.400) against nonconference opponents during that span.

Helton took over as the head coach at USC midway through the 2015 season and was fired two games into 2021. He has a career record of 47-24 straight up (.662) and 30-36-1 (.430) against the spread.

Nebraska and Georgia Southern kickoff at 6:30 p.m. CT on FS1.

Hare are the rest of the lines in the Big Ten for a week that, well, doesn’t offer a ton of curb appeal (numbers for teams facing FCS opponents are listed later in the week):

Western Illinois at Minnesota NL: The Golden Gophers pitched a shutout in a 38-0 win over New Mexico State and former head coach Jerry Kill.

Duke at Northwestern -6: The Wildcats are back in action after beating Nebraska in Ireland. Duke won its first game under new head coach Mike Elko, formerly Texas A&M’s defensive coordinator, by shutting out Temple, 30-0.

Arkansas State at Ohio State -44: After Notre Dame limited an explosive Buckeye offense to 21 points in Week 1, don’t be surprised if Ohio State pours it on here. Arkansas State beat Grambling 58-3 in its opener.

Ohio at Penn State -27: Both teams picked up close wins in Week 1. Penn State outlasted Purdue in West Lafayette for a four-point win, and Ohio topped Florida Atlantic 41-38 in Athens.

Washington State at Wisconsin -16: The Badgers gradually squeezed the life out of Illinois State in a 38-0 win to open the season. Washington State had to rally from a 10-0 first-quarter deficit to beat Idaho 24-17 in Pullman.

Maryland -23 at Charlotte: The Terrapins are making the rare P5-to-G5 roadtrip after beating Buffalo 31-10. Should be fine. Charlotte has already lost twice, losing 43-13 to FAU in Week 0 and 41-24 to William & Mary on Friday.

Virginia at Illinois -4: The Cavaliers looked solid enough in coach Tony Elliott’s debut, beating Richmond 34-17. Illinois dropped a close game at Indiana after beating Wyoming in Week 0.

Iowa State at Iowa -3: Iowa State, replacing a sizable chunk of last year’s team, opened with an easy home win over Southeast Missouri. Meanwhile, across the state, Iowa did Iowa things, beating FCS No. 2 South Dakota State 7-3 without scoring a touchdown.

Indiana State at Purdue NL: The Boilermakers will look to bounce back after a season-opening loss to Penn State. Indiana State beat North Alabama 17-14 in overtime to start the season.

Akron at Michigan State -34: There Will Be Blood. Akron survived for a 7-point win over FCS St. Francis (PA), while the Spartans cruised to a comfortable 35-13 win over Western Michigan.

Wagner at Rutgers NL: The Scarlet Knights are 1-0! Rutgers opened the season with a 22-21 win on the road at Boston College. Wagner lost to Fordham on Saturday, it’s 21st consecutive loss. The Seahawks last won in September of 2019.

Idaho at Indiana NL: The Vandals put up a fight against Washington State, but the Hoosiers might be riding high after a tough win over Illinois.

Hawaii at Michigan -46: There Will Be Blood II. Michigan easily dispatched Colorado State 51-7. Hawaii leaves home for the first time this season having lost to Vanderbilt and Western Kentucky by a combined score of 112-27.

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