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College Football Betting Preview: Appalachian State Mountaineers vs. North Carolina Tar Heels

September 9, 2023


In a week 2 matchup in college football the Appalachian State Mountaineers travel to take on the North Carolina Tar Heels. Both teams started the 2023 college football season off with wins as the Appalachian State Mountaineers defeated the Gardner-Webb Runnin’ Bulldogs at home by a score of 45-24 while the North Carolina Tar Heels had an impressive win on the road against the South Carolina Gamecocks by a score of 31-17. 

Will the Tar Heels have another impressive win in their home opener or will the Mountaineers keep the game closer than Vegas projects? Let’s take a look at how these teams match up against each other this season.

The Appalachian State Mountaineers enter this game with a record of 1-0 following a 45-24 win at home against the Gardner-Webb Runnin’ Bulldogs, an FCS opponent, however, the Mountaineers failed to cover the 22.5-point spread as a favorite at home in week 1 of the college football season. Appalachian State scored 45 points while compiling a total of 394 total yards offensively which included 244 passing yards and 150 rushing yards while allowing 24 points and 360 total yards defensively which included 221 passing yards and 139 rushing yards. 

Joey Aguilar led the team in passing, completing 11 of 13 attempts for 174 yards and four touchdowns. Nate Noel led the team in rushing with 24 carries for 117 yards and a touchdown. Kaedin Robinson led the team in receiving, catching all four targets for 64 yards and a touchdown.

North Carolina enters this game ranked 17th in the AP Poll and 16th in the Coaches Poll with a record of 1-0 following a 31-17 win on the road against the South Carolina Gamecocks as well as covering the 2.5-point spread as a road favorite. The Tar Heels scored 31 points while compiling 437 total yards offensively which included 269 passing yards and 168 rushing yards while allowing 17 points and 351 total yards defensively which included 353 passing yards and -2 rushing yards. 

Drake Maye led the team in passing, completing 24 of 32 attempts for 269 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions while adding 25 rushing yards on four attempts. British Brooks led the team in rushing with 15 carries for 103 yards. Kobe Paysour led the team in receiving, catching seven of nine targets for 66 yards and a touchdown.

BookMaker has the North Carolina Tar Heels listed as 18.5-point favorites at home against the Appalachian State Mountaineers on Saturday in week 2 of the college football season. The teams have split the series with both teams going 1-1 all-time and both going 1-1 ATS all-time in the series with the most recent matchup occurring last season which resulted in a 63-61 win for the North Carolina Tar Heels as well as an outright win as a 3-point underdog. 

Appalachian State is 0-1 ATS overall this season after finishing last season with a record of 3-9 ATS overall, 1-4 ATS on the road, and 1-0 ATS as an underdog while the North Carolina Tar Heels are 1-0 ATS overall and 1-0 ATS as a favorite this season after finishing last season with a record of 6-7-1 ATS overall, 2-4 ATS at home, and 2-6-1 ATS as a favorite.

North Carolina is the more talented team this season and although the game was close last season I don’t expect that to be the case this season after the performance that both teams had in their week 1 matchups. I look for the Tar Heels to roll to an easy win in this matchup which is why I am buying the .5 point and taking the North Carolina Tar Heels -18 on BookMaker for this matchup on Saturday evening. 

Spooky Express Pick: North Carolina Tar Heels -18