UCF vs. Georgia Tech Preview
Central Florida (-290) is favored by 7.5 points over Georgia Tech (+235) with the over/under set at 62.0 total points
- The Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets defeated the Florida State Seminoles 16-13 last week.
- The Yellow Jackets trailed 10-0 at halftime, but came roaring back to win a close contest.
- With the Central Florida Knights having their first game postponed, this will be their long-awaited season-opener.
- Ten players, including two starters, have opted out of the season for Central Florida.
- Central Florida (-290) is favored over Georgia Tech (+235) with the over/under set at 62.0 total points. The Knights are 7.5-point favorites. CLICK TO VIEW LIVE GAME ODDS!
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Starting Out Strong
The Yellow Jackets were picked to finish last in the ACC this season, but they shocked the league by beating Florida State last week. The Yellow Jackets trailed 10-0 at halftime, but turned things around in the second-half. FSU’s only points after the first quarter came on a 53-yard field goal. That opened the door for the Yellow Jackets to score a touchdown and two field goals in the second-half to win 16-13.
True freshman Jeff Sims got the start at quarterback for Georgia Tech. Of course, he didn’t exactly have the Yellow Jackets humming offensively against the Seminoles. Sims threw two interceptions, although he was otherwise effective, completing 24-of-35 passes for 277 yards. On the other hand, the Yellow Jackets have to be concerned about their running game. Sims ended up being the team’s leading rusher against Florida State with Georgia Tech averaging a modest 4.0 yards per carry.
On the other side of the ball, Geoff Collins has to be pleased with the play of his defense. Sophomore defensive lineman Curtis Ryans had two of GTU’s three sacks that helped the Yellow Jackets keep FSU under wraps after falling behind 10-0. The Seminoles averaged just 4.4 yards per pass and 3.1 yards per run, which should give the Georgia Tech defense a ton of confidence heading into this week’s game with UCF.
Speaking of the Knights, this will be their season-opener after last week’s game with Florida International was postponed. Central Florida has also seen 10 players, including two starters, opt-out of the season because of concerns related to the pandemic. Nevertheless, the Knights are ranked 14th and have aspirations to win the AAC this year.
After averaging better than 43 points per game a year ago, the Knights are expecting to have a high-scoring offense behind sophomore quarterback Dillon Gabriel. As a freshman, he was responsible for 29 touchdown passes and just seven interceptions, potentially making him a Heisman dark horse if he can build off of such an impressive season. The Knights also bring back three starters on the offensive line and a host of experienced skill players, setting up the UCF offense for another big year.
On the defensive side of the ball, the Knights bring back a lot of experience. Central Florida conceded less than 23 points per game in 2019, and with the majority of starters back, the Knights could be even better than that in 2020. The secondary, in particular, has a lot of star power, while the UCF defensive line is one of the deepest in the AAC.
This game figures to be a matchup of confidence vs pedigree. The Yellow Jackets will be on 'Cloud 9' after last week’s win, especially with the way they performed on defense. Of course, the UCF offense they’ll face this week will be a lot more potent than the Florida State offense they faced a week ago. The Georgia Tech offense and their young quarterback will likely be called upon to produce more than 16 points because the Yellow Jackets could get drawn into a shootout.