NC State vs UCONN Prediction - College Football Picks 8/31/23

UCONN Huskies (0-0) vs NC State Wolfpack (0-0)

Game Info: Thursday, August 31, 2023 at 7:30 pm (Pratt & Whitney Stadium at Rentschler Field)

Betting Odds: UCONN Huskies +15 -- Over/Under: 47.5 Click Here for the Latest Odds

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The NC State Wolfpack will play the Connecticut Huskies in a non-conference game on Thursday night at Pratt & Whitney Stadium in East Hartford, Connecticut. Both of these teams had solid seasons last year, but both also lost their bowl game. Which team can start 2023 with a victory? 

NC State Preview

The NC State Wolfpack went 8-5 last year and finished 4-4 in the ACC. NC State started the season 4-0, but ended up losing regular season games to Clemson, Syracuse, Boston College, and Louisville. The Wolfpack did pickup solid wins against Texas Tech, Florida State, Wake Forest, and North Carolina. NC State went to the Mayo Bowl, where they lost by a score of 16-12 to Maryland. NC State will be starting Virginia transfer Brennan Armstrong at quarterback and he can really sling the ball around. With the new quarterback comes some new receivers, as most of the top production is no longer there. NC State does return their leading rusher, Jordan Houston, who rushed for 544 yards last year. The Wolfpack also lost a lot of production on the defensive side from last season, which is unfortunate, as the 2022 defense was very good.

UConn Preview

The UConn Huskies were 6-7 last season and started the season 1-4, but was able to bounce back for a bowl berth. UConn was blown out by Syracuse (48-14), Michigan (59-0), and this NC State team (41-10) in three of their first five games. The Huskies finished the season strong, going 5-2 down the stretch with wins over Fresno State, FIU, Boston College, Mass, and Liberty. UConn did lose the Myrtle Beach Bowl by a score of 28-14 to Marshall. UConn’s running game had some serious issues last season, but they should be at least a little bit better this year. Joseph Fagnano, a transfer, will be the starting quarterback for UConn. The offensive line returns a few starters from last season, which should make life a little easier for this Huskies offense. UConn should be ok on the defensive side this season, but may struggle against the Power Five teams like they did in 2022. 

Connecticut Huskies Team Facts

  • The underdog has won three of Connecticut's last four games at Pratt & Whitney Stadium at Rentschler Field.
  • Connecticut has failed to cover the spread in each of its last five August games at Pratt & Whitney Stadium at Rentschler Field.
  • Connecticut has won the first half in three of its last four games against non-conference opponents.
  • Each of Connecticut's last five games against non-conference opponents have gone UNDER the total points line.

NC State Wolfpack Team Facts

  • NC State has won nine of its last 10 season openers.
  • NC State has failed to cover the spread in each of its last five games as a favorite against non-AP-ranked teams.
  • Four of NC State's last five games as a road favorite have gone UNDER the total points line.

Matchup/League Facts

  • Connecticut was one of only 26 FBS teams to win 2+ games when trailing after Q3 last season.
  • Connecticut ranked T26th among FBS teams for H2 points allowed per game last season (10.5).
  • NC State ranked T16th among FBS teams for Q1 win percentage last season (.615).
  • NC State ranked 23rd among FBS teams for H2 points allowed per game last season (10.4).

Pick

NC State blew the doors off of UConn by a score of 41-10 last season, but they will have to hit the road for this game. Brennan Armstrong should be able to get the NC State offense going, but it may take some time to get everyone on the same page. UConn had a very successful season last year, by their standards, and they have a chance to start the season with a huge upset win here. UConn will also have a new quarterback this year and will face a defense that was great last year. I think we are going to see a lower scoring game in this one and I like the under. 

The pick in this article is the opinion of the writer, not a PickDawgz site consensus.

Mitch's Take...

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