Iowa Hawkeyes vs. Tennessee Volunteers 1/1/24 – The Iowa Hawkeyes and Tennessee Volunteers are set for a showdown in the Citrus Bowl on New Year’s Day. This college football bowl picks match-up features two teams looking to end their seasons on a high note after falling short of their conference championship aspirations. The Hawkeyes impressed with a 10-win season but entered the bowl having lost two of their last three. Meanwhile, the inconsistent Volunteers closed out the regular season with wins over Missouri and Vanderbilt. This cross-conference clash should provide an exciting start to the New Year.
Iowa Hawkeyes vs. Tennessee Volunteers 1/1/24
|Monday, January 1, 2023 at 1:00 PM ET
|Camping World Stadium
— Hawkeye Football (@HawkeyeFootball) January 1, 2024
Deacon Hill QB vs. Nico Iamaleava QB
Deacon Hill heads into the bowl game having taken over as Iowa’s starting quarterback midway through the season. In seven games, Hill has completed just 49.4% of his passes for 1,096 yards with 5 touchdowns and 6 interceptions. While he has struggled with efficiency in the passing game, the redshirt freshman has shown composure in high-pressure situations. Hill’s mobility and running threat adds another dimension to the Hawkeye offense. However, he has taken 20 sacks and will need better protection against Tennessee’s fierce pass rush.
On the other side, heralded 5-star recruit Nico Iamaleava has seen limited action in relief duty for the Volunteers. In sparse playing time, the freshman impressively completed 61.5% of his throws for 163 yards and a score. Iamaleava possesses elite arm talent and athleticism but lacks experience at this stage. If called upon against Iowa’s stout defense, his decision-making and poise will be tested. Much could depend on how Iamaleava handles the pressure if inserted into a close game.
Hawkeyes’ Key Strengths: Leshon Williams and Nico Ragaini
Iowa Hawkeyes possess more than just Hill in their arsenal. Running back Leshon Williams has been an effective force, amassing 804 yards on an average of 4.9 yards per attempt and finding gaps in defenses with ease. Wide receiver Nico Ragaini, with 29 receptions for 252 yards but no touchdowns to his name has also played an instrumental role. Nico is also Hill’s go-to target when Iowa is trailing. This game could come down to Hill finding reliable targets on his behalf.
Volunteers’ Strong Suit: Jabari Small and Squirrel White
Tennessee’s offense is equally formidable, thanks to Jabari Small and Squirrel White. Small has amassed 475 rushing yards at an average of five yards per attempt for Tennessee; his ability to break tackles and gain crucial yards has been key in their strategy. Wide receiver Squirrel White, with 64 receptions for 764 yards received from Iamaleava provides another solid option while testing Iowa’s secondary with speed and route running skills.
NCAAF Betting Odds: Tennessee Volunteers -225, Over/Under: 36
The betting odds favor Tennessee, reflecting their dynamic offense and solid season performance. However, Iowa’s resilience and tactical gameplay cannot be underestimated, making this matchup an intriguing prospect for bettors.
Iowa Hawkeyes Betting Trends
Iowa are 2-4 ATS in their last 6 games.
The total has gone UNDER in 8 of Iowa’s last 8 games.
Iowa are 4-1 SU in their last 5 games.
The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Iowa’s last 7 games against an opponent in the Southeastern conference.
Iowa are 1-5 SU in their last 6 games played in January.
The total has gone UNDER in 6 of Iowa’s last 6 games when playing as the underdog.
Tennessee Volunteers Betting Trends
Tennessee are 2-4 ATS in their last 6 games.
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Tennessee’s last 6 games.
Tennessee are 10-4 SU in their last 14 games.
Volunteers are 5-1 SU in their last 6 games against an opponent in the Big Ten conference.
Tennessee are 5-1 SU in their last 6 games played in January.
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Tennessee’s last 5 games played on a Monday.
Iowa Hawkeyes vs. Tennessee Volunteers Betting Picks
Considering the data and trends, this game poses an interesting challenge for bettors. The Hawkeyes’ defensive strategy could stifle the Volunteers’ high-scoring tendencies, suggesting a potential underdog victory or at least a closer game than the odds suggest. However, Tennessee’s offensive prowess, especially in January games, cannot be ignored.
When betting, look beyond just the winner. Prop bets on individual player performances, especially quarterbacks and key running backs, could offer value. Given both teams’ trends, the under on the total points might be a smart play, especially with Iowa’s strong defensive record.
In conclusion, while the Volunteers are favored by online sportsbooks, the Hawkeyes’ tenacity could make this a closer contest than many anticipate. This Citrus Bowl is set to be a thrilling start to the college football year, offering both excitement and intriguing betting opportunities.
Score Prediction: Tennessee 24, Iowa 20