Quick Lane Bowl Betting Odds & Predictions – Rutgers Vs North CarolinaNoah Williams
Welcome to the inaugural Quick Lane Bowl, taking place one day after Christmas. Make sure you shake off your turkey hangover before the Rutgers Scarlet Knights take on the North Carolina Tar Heels at Ford Field. This game will match the Big Ten against the ACC, the new bowl has replaced the Motor City Bowl as Detroit’s bowl game.
— Detroit Sports (@detsports) December 17, 2014
In its first year, the Quick Lane Bowl has a great matchup between a Rutgers team that surprised in its first year in the Big Ten and a talented yet disappointing North Carolina outfit.
Quick Lane Bowl
Rutgers Scarlet Knights vs North Carolina Tar Heels
Date: Dec. 26, 2014
Start Time: 4:30 p.m. ET
Location: Detroit, Michigan
Stadium: Ford Field
TV Info: ESPN
Stream Info: WatchESPN.com
Radio: Rutgers Vs North Carolina
Point Spread: Tar Heels -3
Game Total: 65.5
North Carolina Will Win the Quick Lane Bowl If…
They win the turnover battle and put 37 points on the board!
The Tar Heels have an often explosive offense and they could very well win this one by simply outscoring Rutgers. However, if they don’t take care of the ball and lose the turnover battle, then there’s no doubt that the disappointing Heels could get beat. North Carolina went 3-2 SU and ATS over its final five regular season games and lost the turnover battle in losses against Miami on Nov. 1 and North Carolina State in their finale.
— Jason Freeman (@UNCEquipment) December 11, 2014
If North Carolina can put up at least 37 points on the board, the outcome of this contest is likely closer to a lock selection than anything else, seeing as how Rutgers allowed at least 37 points in dropping four of their final six games.
The Scarlet Knights gave up an average of 40.2 points per game over their last six games while the Tar Heels scored at least 35 points in six of their last 10 games. North Carolina was held to just seven points in the finale against N.C. State, so they’ll have plenty of motivation to play better offense and get back into the win column.
Rutgers Will Win the Quick Lane Bowl If…
They harass Marquise Williams – and play some damn defense!
The first thing the Rutgers Scarlet Knights will need to do if they want to win this contest is harass Tar Heels quarterback Marquise Williams into a bad day at the office. Carolina’s fleet-footed signal-caller is a dual threat that is the driving force behind North Carolina’s fairly explosive offense (34.3 ppg). Williams totaled 32 touchdowns on the season (20 passing, 12 rushing) so, clearly, the Scarlet Knights will have their hands full with the elusive Williams.
— Rutgers Football (@RFootball) December 18, 2014
Another novel concept that the Scarlet Knights really need to try is…playing some damn defense. All jokes aside, Rutgers has seriously struggled in going 2-4 SU over their last six games while giving up at least 42 points in three of those losses and an average of 45.0 points over the four losses overall. With Rutgers scoring at least 41 points in winning two of their final three games, the Tar Heels could have their work cut out for them against a Scarlet Knights team that averaged a modest 25.6 points per game in the regular season.
The good news for Rutgers is that Williams is coming off his worst performance of the season in North Carolina’s 35-7 season-ending loss to North Carolina State. Williams went 11-of-22 for 97 yards against the Wolf Pack, but the bad news for the Scarlet Knights is that Williams was pretty cautious in throwing just nine interceptions during the regular season, though he did toss at least one pick in five of his final seven games.
Who Will Win the Quick Lane Bowl?
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to expect an offensive-filled matchup that North Carolina wins by simply outscoring the Scarlet Knights. The Tar Heels average almost nine points per game more than Rutgers – and despite allowing 8.0 more points per game defensively, I think North Carolina is the right pick here.
The Heels went 4-2 SU over their last six while Rutgers went a polar opposite 2-4. Both teams went 3-3 ATS over their final half-dozen games. North Carolina has also gone 5-2 ATS over their last seven while Rutgers has alternated SU wins and losses over their last six games – and they’re due for another ATS loss after covering the spread against Maryland in their finale.
I also like the fact that North Carolina averaged 10.7 points per game in the fourth quarter while Rutgers averaged just 5.8 points per game in the fourth quarter and no more than 8.6 points per game in any quarter.