Virginia faces Maryland this Friday (9/15/23). Find the latest betting odds for the Virginia Vs. Maryland game and a full preview. Also find a betting prediction below where our best bet is Maryland -14.5.
Virignia Vs. Maryland Prediction & Best Bet
Virginia has had a brutal start to the 2023 season. In Week 1, they lost by 36 points to Tennessee on the road. In Week 2, they led 35-24 at home against James Madison before crumbling in the fourth quarter on their way to a one-point loss.
Maryland had a very different Week 2, as they trailed Charlotte early 14-0 and 14-9 at halftime before winning 38-20. The cause for that sleepy start is unclear, but what is clear is that the Terrapins have a very dynamic offense. They’ve scored 38 points in each of their two games to start the year.
While Maryland quarterback Taulia Tagovailoa threw two picks against Charlotte last week, he’s otherwise been very accurate – his 83.1% adjusted completion rate would be a career high per PFF. Returning wide receivers Corey Dyches and Jeshaun Jones both have over 100 yards so far while West Virginia transfer Kaden Prather has scored twice.
Tagovailoa should have plenty of success against a Virginia pass defense that can’t stop a nosebleed. The ‘Hoos rank outside the top 100 in passing success rate allowed, and that was to be expected after they lost their top two cornerbacks from last season, Fentrell Cypress (Florida State) and Anthony Johnson (New Orleans Saints).
Virginia had Tony Muskett slated to replace Brennan Armstrong, who transferred to NC State, this season, but Muskett is hurt, making three-star true freshman Anthony Colandrea the starter. While he might be the quarterback of the future for the Cavaliers, I’m comfortable fading him in his first road start.
I like Maryland to cover in this game, but it’s not one of my more confident plays of the week, and it’s just a half unit play for me. I’m holding off on placing it for now as I’m hoping to find a -14 before kickoff – that’s a key football number – although I believe -14.5 is the best number we’ll see before kickoff.
Virginia Vs. Maryland Prediction & Best Bet: Maryland -14.5
Maryland Vs. Virginia Betting Odds
Maryland is currently favored by 14.5 points at home in this game. The spread opened at -19.5 but was bought down to the current number of 14.5. The books are taking a stand at the key number of 14, and I wouldn’t expect to see it push through there. The over/under for this game is 48, meaning a final score of about 31-17 is expected by the books.
Virginia Vs. Maryland Key Matchups
This matchup between Virginia and Maryland offers plenty of intrigue, and there are a handful of key matchups that could determine the winner. Let’s take a look.
Roman Hemby Vs. Virginia’s run defense
Maryland running back Roman Hemby is coming off a massive game where he took 19 carries for 158 yards at an 8.3 yards per attempt clip. He also generated a whopping 6.47 yards after contact per run, and Hemby’s 156 yards after contact this season rank fourth in the Power Five per PFF.
Virginia’s run defense has been gashed so far as they rank 132nd out of 133 FBS teams in success rate allowed on the ground. They’re also 105th in tackling per PFF, resulting in them allowing a lot of yards after contact – that plays right into Hemby’s skill set. I’d be looking to play his props in this game as he should dominate.
Donnell Brown Vs. Virginia’s pass blocking
True freshman quarterback Anthony Colandrea was impressive last week, completing 77% of his passes at a 14.5 yards per attempt clip that would lead all qualified quarterbacks in the FBS this season. However, much of that came from the fact that James Madison couldn’t get pressure without blitzing – all 11 of their pressures came on blitzes.
I expect that to change against Maryland, especially with the play of St. Francis (Pa.) transfer Donnell Brown. The NFL hopeful edge had two pressures on just five pass-rush snaps last week and had an interception late in the game that helped ice his team’s win. Look for him to make a big impact against an offensive line that PFF ranks 124th in pass-blocking this season.
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