Betting preview for R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl: Western Kentucky vs. South Alabama

By Adam Burke  ( 

December 18, 2022 10:10 AM

Previewing the R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl: Western Kentucky vs. South Alabama

It's the most wonderful time of the year, and there are 43 college football bowls to wager on. VSiN is here to help bettors sort through them all and find the value. Be sure to check out our College Football Bowl Betting Guide, our homepage for individual bowl previews and our running best bets file.

>Get all VSiN Bowl picks, sortable by game.

This is the preview for the R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl

Western Kentucky vs. South Alabama (-4.5, 55.5)

Date: Wednesday, Dec. 21, 9:00  p.m. ET

Caesars Superdome (New Orleans, Louisiana)

Betting splits: 54% of handle, 57% of bets on Western Kentucky +4.5

This line has been quite the roller coaster ride. DraftKings opened South Alabama at -3.5, which was adjusted up to as high as -8 based on betting action and the announcement that Western Kentucky QB Austin Reed was in the transfer portal. The line stayed that way for over a week before Reed announced that he withdrew from the portal and returned to WKU, setting the line back at -4.5.

With Reed back in the mix, this, once again, becomes one of the more fascinating bowl games. Western Kentucky was second in the nation in passing yards but also ranked in the top 40 in yards per carry. South Alabama was not nearly as potent on offense but still racked up 5.84 yards per play. While that number is about 0.75 YPP behind the Hilltoppers, the Jaguars’ defense ranked in the top 20 in YPP. Western Kentucky wasn’t bad either, ranking in the top 40.

These are two very well-coached teams, with up-and-comer Kane Wommack on the South Alabama sidelines and Tyson Helton for Western Kentucky. Both teams played bad schedules, with Western Kentucky sitting 120th per Jeff Sagarin going into the bowl season and South Alabama 129th. Reed’s presumptive absence made this an easy handicap, but his return makes it a rather tricky game to bet.

The Jaguars are 0-2 in bowls and haven’t been to one since 2016, so program history is on the line here. This is actually the first time the Jaguars have had more than six wins in an FBS season, so they’d love to punctuate it with a bowl win, while the Hilltoppers are looking to improve to 6-3 all-time in bowls. - Adam Burke

Related links

Matchup Page for R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl

Get best bets on every college football bowl game

back to news



Betting Splits: Percentage of handle & tickets from DraftKings for every game on the board, updated every 10 minutes. GO HERE.

NFL Power Ratings3 sets of numbers from Steve MakinenGO HERE.

View more NFL tools for Pro subscribers


Lou Finocchiaro: Kenneth Gainwell Anytime TD +380. View more picks.

Pauly Howard: Score Every Quarter (+600). View more picks.


Live Bet Sunday: The majority of the handle for the Super Bowl will come relatively late, ramping up a few days before the game. Expect this action to alter the money line prices if not the spread. View more tips.

The Lombardi Line: The Chiefs have FOUR rookie DBs with Trent McDuffie, Joshua Williams, Jaylen Watson, and Bryan Cook. If the Chiefs D focuses on pass rush and leaves the DBs to play man-to-man, the Eagles' pass catchers have the advantage. View more tips.


Subscriber Only News  Vsin Exclusive

View All