We are getting set for another week of bowl games as we are getting closer to the semifinals of the College Football Playoffs. This week, the West Virginia Mountaineers and the Minnesota Golden Gophers are set to do battle in the Guaranteed Rate Bowl. The game is being held at Chase Field in Arizona.
This season for West Virginia has been disappointing. At 6-6 on the season, West Virginia finished sixth in the Big 12 Conference. The Mountaineers are looking to end the season on a high note with a win over a worthy opponent from the Big Ten.
Minnesota is trying to cap off another good season, but one where they had much higher expectations. This season would have been much different had Ibrahim Smith not been injured, but Minnesota will be a tough team to beat next year in the Big Ten West. The Golden Gophers were a few games away from winning the West this year. That being said, let’s have a look at both teams and how they arrive to this Minnesota vs West Virginia showdown so you can bet against their College Football Bowl odds.
Minnesota Golden Gophers Vs West Virginia Mountaineers Betting Analysis – Guaranteed Rate Bowl Odds
This season was all over the place for West Virginia. They had good wins, bad losses, and everything you can think of.
Offensively, the Mountaineers had a successful year, especially from two different players. Jarret Doege threw for 2,908 yards and 19 touchdowns. The only knock you might find on Doege is the 11 interceptions on the season, but he almost eclipsed the 3,000-yard mark, which is very impressive.
Leddie Brown was a big factor in the season for West Virginia. Brown rushed for over 1,000 yards and 13 touchdowns.
Defensively, the Mountaineers never quite figured out how to get stops. They averaged 350 yards of offense given up, most of it through the air.
Thankfully for West Virginia, Minnesota is a run-heavy offense. They will need a big performance this week to pull out a win.
Golden Gophers Notes
As mentioned, this is not the season Minnesota had hoped for at the start of the season. The Golden Gophers had Ohio State on the ropes in Week 1, but once Ibrahim Smith went down with an injury, the Buckeyes took over. Smith was a devastating loss for the Gophers.
Had Smith not been hurt, Minnesota could have been favorites to win the Big Ten West. Minnesota had two bad losses on the season, one to Bowling Green and the other to Illinois.
Minnesota struggles against Illinois, but a game they should have won in their minds. The fourth loss came to Iowa, the Big Ten West Champions.
This week, Tanner Morgan needs to have a good week. Morgan has been held back by some injuries, but he is the heart and soul of the Minnesota team. Morgan has struggled this season with only ten touchdown passes and eight interceptions. Morgan may have the opportunity to come back next season to be a premier quarterback talent in the NFL draft.