Georgia State vs Louisiana College Football Betting Preview: Another division title beckons for rollin’ Ragin’ Cajuns

Eddie Griffin

After being ranked in this week’s AP poll, the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns might have hoped to be included in the first College Football Playoff rankings of the season when they were released on Tuesday. But like fellow high-achieving Group of Five teams SMU, Houston, Coastal Carolina, and UTSA, the Ragin’ Cajuns were on the outside looking in.

While likely unexpected, it does present an opportunity for the Ragin’ Cajuns to be a little extra fired up for tonight’s Sun Belt showdown with Georgia State. Louisiana is on a roll with seven straight wins since a season-opening loss to Texas, and the odds heavily favor an eighth straight win.

Georgia State had a rough start to the season, taking some lumps in losing four of their first five games, with a controversial near-upset of Auburn mixed in. But they are on their own roll entering November, having won three games in a row. Heading into back-to-back trips to Louisiana and Coastal Carolina, the Panthers find themselves part of a three-way tie for first in the East Division. Can they make things interesting tonight in Lafayette?

Georgia State Panthers (4-4, 3-1 Sun Belt) vs Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns (7-1, 5-0 Sun Belt), ESPN, 7:30 p.m. ET

Georgia State vs Louisiana College Football Betting Odds

Moneyline

  • Georgia State Panthers +390
  • Louisiana -550

Total

  • OVER 53.5 (-112)
  • UNDER 53.5 (-108)

Spread

  • Georgia State +12.5 (-110)
  • Louisiana -12.5 (-110)

Georgia State Panthers vs Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns college football betting odds are via FanDuel Sportsbook as of Thursday, November 4, 2021 at 6:15 a.m. ET.

Georgia State vs Louisiana Best Bet

Over 53.5

It hasn’t been smooth sailing for Louisiana’s offense this season, but they have been at their best at home. Look for that to continue tonight against the Panthers. In four home games, the Ragin’ Cajuns have averaged 40.5 points and 459 yards per game. In their four road games, they have averaged 23.5 points and 390.8 yards per game.

Things have picked up overall since a win at South Alabama, in which Louisiana totaled a season-low 283 yards. In their last three games, the Ragin’ Cajuns averaged 38 points and over 475 yards per game. Last time out, they put up 45 points and 425 yards in a 45-0 win over Texas State last Saturday.

Georgia State has also warmed up on offense after a slow start. Starting quarterback Quad Brown struggled early this season and was benched in favor of Furman transfer Darren Grainger. It hasn’t been a perfect transition to the highest level of college football, but Grainger looks the part now. Behind efficient passing and solid production with his legs, Grainger has led the Panthers to three straight wins. In the win streak, Georgia State has averaged almost 478 yards per game. Will continued success give them a chance tonight?

Multi-Pronged Rushing Attacks on Both Sides Should Pile Up the Yards Tonight

Both teams love to run the ball, and that will be a big factor tonight. Louisiana averages 5.3 yards per rush and 208 yards per game, while Georgia State averages 4.9 yards per rush and almost 222 yards a game. And both teams do it in a similar fashion as well. Louisiana’s three leading rushers average at least 44.3 yards per game, while Georgia State’s three leading rushers average at least 48.5 yards per game.

Defensively, neither team stops the run particularly well. Both teams allow an average of four yards per carry, so production should be no issue on either side. It is worth noting that Louisiana held Appalachian State to 78 yards rushing in a 41-13 win, but the Mountaineers were without Camerun Peoples, the other half of their two-pronged rushing attack. If Texas State could exceed their season average despite being blown out, Georgia State should have a very productive night.

Where the game could be decided is each team’s recent affinity for takeaways and Georgia State’s pass defense. The Ragin’ Cajuns have forced seven turnovers in their last two home games, while the Panthers have had multiple takeaways in each game of their current win streak.

Louisiana QB Levi Lewis makes few mistakes, however. He has thrown only 17 interceptions in 1,015 career pass attempts and has never had a multi-interception game at Cajun Field. Look for Lewis to be at his best tonight. Georgia State’s defense allows 8.4 yards per pass attempt and was torched by Appalachian State’s Chase Brice a month ago.

Louisiana coach Billy Napier continues to be a hot name in college football coaching rumors for a reason, and a win tonight will add another division title to his resume.

Georgia State vs Louisiana College Football Score Prediction

Louisiana 34, Georgia State 20

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