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The Cal Golden Bears and Texas Tech Red Raiders, both 6-6 this season, will square off in the Independence Bowl. Unfortunately for viewers, there are 24 players out of this game, with two more questionable with injury.
Despite the madness, we’ll do our best to parse through this and provide the best prop bets for this matchup.
While the Red Raiders are down two starting wide receivers in Price and Bradley, Morton has been playing the back half of the season. Here, he’ll face a Golden Bears defense that allows the fifth-most passing yards per game in all of college football with 283.7. Additionally, they allow 4.3 offensive touchdowns per game.
Cal will also be without cornerback Jeremiah Earby, who played well over 400 snaps this past season, further hurting their secondary.
Yes, the depth chart shortens for Morton and who to pass to. Still, with a bowl game like this and so many absences, we could see some players show up big as they look to impress the staff for a starting spot next season.
The Golden Bears defense is so bad that, even without two starters, Morton should succeed here. In seven starts this season, Morton had two or more passing touchdowns in four.
Here, we will piggyback on the Morton touchdowns and take the over on passing yards, too. The line here is an attainable 228.5. Morton has 229 passing yards or more this season in just two of his seven starts, but Cal, once again, allows over 280 per game. This season, they held Stanford, Utah, Auburn, and North Texas to 229 passing yards or less, but with a total in this game at 58, we could see plenty of fireworks offensively.
The Golden Bears defense simply cannot be trusted, especially with four defensive players out due to the transfer portal or injury.
In addition to Earby, who played 447 snaps, linebacker Elarms-Orr is out, and he played 700 snaps and led the team in tackles.
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While the Golden Bears might be in a tough spot with freshman Fernando Mendoza starting, running back Jaydn Ott has been a bright spot for this offense all season.
He’s had 229 carries for 1,257 yards (5.5 yards per carry) and 11 touchdowns. He has six games with less than 103 rushing yards, and here, he’ll take on a Red Raiders defense that allows 169.9 rushing yards per game, 249 in their last three, and 302 in their most recent game.
The point spread here is just three points, indicating Cal should be in this game throughout, and with a freshman quarterback, look for Ott to get plenty of chances.
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Teams: Texas Tech vs. California
Where: Independence Stadium, Shreveport, Louisiana
When: Saturday, Dec. 16, 9:15 p.m. ET
How to Watch: ESPN
After graduating from the University of New Hampshire with a BA in Journalism, Richard Janvrin has been covering iGaming and sports betting since December 2018. Richard has covered betting at Bleacher Report, Gambling.com, The Game Day, Forbes, and more.More info on Richard Janvrin
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