Northwestern vs Tennessee 2015 Outback Bowl Betting Preview

Posted by Eric Williams on Wednesday,December 30, 2015 4:27, EST in

Northwestern and Tennessee will both be looking to get the season-ending ‘W’ when they square off in the 2015 Outback Bowl on Jan. 1 at 12:00 PM ET, live from Raymond James Stadium in Tampa. Both teams won their final five games to reach this intriguing bowl matchup and now, Northwestern looks to nail down a school-record 11th win. Make sure to check out our NCAA Football Betting Lines portal to get your wagers on.

Following the press conference, @UTCoachJones and Outback Bowl President and CEO visit. pic.twitter.com/7TQTs2ngAV

How To Bet The Wildcats vs Volunteers 2015 Outback Bowl Odds, Game & TV Info

When: Friday, January 1, 2016 12:00 PM ET
Where: Raymond James Stadium, Tampa, Florida
TV: ESPN2 (view full TV schedule here)
NCAAF Odds: Tennessee -8
O/U: 48

Tennessee is favored to beat Northwestern by eight points after opening as a 9-point favorite. The game’s O/U Total sits at 48 after opening at 45.5. The Vols are a -300 pick against the Moneyline while Tennessee sits at +260.

Why Bet The Northwestern Wildcats Odds at +8

Because they’ve got one of the best defenses in the country! Northwestern (10-2 SU, 8-4 ATS) has an elite defense that gave up just 16.4 points per game to rank seventh in the nation and that’s the best reason to wager on the Wildcats in this contest. Sophomore linebacker Anthony Walker was named to the All-Big Ten first team after recording a whopping 113 tackles, including 19.5 for loss while senior defensive lineman Deonte Gibson recorded nine sacks.

Offensively, Northwestern is led by elite running back Justin Jackson. The elusive sophomore rushed for 1,344 yards, though he scored just four touchdowns on the season. Freshman signal-caller Clayton Thorson has been mediocre at best in completing just 51.6 percent of his passes for 1,465 yards with seven touchdowns and seven interceptions. The Wildcats offense averaged just 20.7 points per game this season (112th).

Why Bet The Tennessee Volunteers Odds at -8

Tennessee (8-4 SU, 7-5 ATS) had a solid season as their two best offensive players had solid seasons. Gifted dual-threat quarterback Joshua Dobbs passed for 2,125 yards while completing 59.9 percent of his passes with 15 touchdowns and five interceptions. The bad news is that Dobbs also tossed a dozen costly interceptions, though he did rush for nine scores. Running back Jalen Hurd rushed for 1,155 yards and a team-high 11 scores as the Vols put up a stellar 34.3 points per game to rank 32nd in the nation.

Tennessee limited its opponents to just 21.2 points per game to rank 25th in the country. The Vols also have some outstanding special teams units as they ran back three punts and three kickoffs for touchdowns.

My Expert Pick & Final Score Prediction

Let me start by saying that I’m sunned the Tennessee Volunteers are favored by eight points to beat a very good Northwestern team that won 10 games this season. Having said that let me also say that it’s easy to see why a convincing 66 percent of the betting public like the Wildcats to cover the spread as an underdog. Northwestern is 5-0 SU and 4-1 ATS in its last five games and the underdog has covered the spread in the last four Outback Bowls. Tennessee is 5-2 ATS in its last seven games, but I’m going with the Wildcats to cover!

My final score prediction: Tennessee 20 Northwestern 17