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How and what to watch for 2020 Duke’s Mayo Bowl: Wake Forest vs. Wisconsin

The Duke’s Mayo Bowl will have two programs aiming for a positive end to a COVID ravaged season.

Sam Hartman #10 of the Wake Forest Demon Deacons reacts during their game against the North Carolina Tar Heels at Kenan Stadium on November 14, 2020 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. The Tar Heels won 59-53. Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images

The artist formerly known as the Belk Bowl has been reborn as the Duke’s Mayo Bowl and it will welcome a pair of teams from the ACC and Big Ten, respectively, to do battle in Charlotte as the Wisconsin Badgers will take on the Wake Forest Deacons.

Like several other programs around the country, Wisconsin’s 2020 campaign was ravaged by COVID as they were sidelined for weeks following their season opening 45-7 victory over Illinois. Following a beatdown of Michigan, the Badgers stumbled hard with three straight losses to Northwestern, Indiana and Iowa, a stretch where they scored 20 points combined. They did end the regular season on a positive note however with a 20-17 victory over Minnesota to keep Paul Bunyan’s Axe in Madison for another year.

Despite their record, Wisconsin is ranked 16th in SP+ and their fifth-ranked defense has a lot to do with it. Through six games, they’ve forced eight turnovers, held opposing quarterbacks to under 52 percent in completion percentage and have stonewalled opposing rushers to just 3.4 yards per carry.

Wake Forest has also had quite the strange season. Two straight losses to open the season was followed up by a string of four straight victories midway through the season before losses to North Carolina and Louisville put a close to the campaign. In those two losses, their defense was besieged for a combined 104 points and 1,195 yards of total offense.

Game Time/TV Channel/Streaming

You can watch Wake Forest vs. Wisconsin in the 2020 Duke’s Mayo Bowl on Wednesday, December 30th at 12 p.m. ET on ESPN. You can stream it via WatchESPN or the ESPN app with a cable or streaming service login.

Point Spread, Totals, Odds, Trends

Point spread: Wisconsin -10
Point Total: 51.5
Money line: Wisconsin -420, Wake Forest +290

  • Wake Forest is 6-2 against the spread this season, Wisconsin is 2-4.
  • The over has hit in five of Wake Forest’s eight games in 2020. The under has hit in four of six Wisconsin games.
  • Wake Forest is 3-0 against the spread as an underdog this season. Wisconsin is 2-4 against the spread as a favorite.

Duke’s Mayo Bowl Betting Splits

Wake Forest: 53% of action, 36% of bets
Wisconsin: 47% of action, 64% of bets

The Best Bet

Wisconsin went three consecutive games where it failed to score more than seven points. That’s largely because of the passing game, and starting receivers Danny Davis and Kendric Pryor are likely going to be out of the lineup once again, so I’m not sure where the improvement comes from in the last game of the season. I don’t have any trust in the Badgers offense, and the defensive side of the ball is pretty darn good. Therefore, 51.5 is far too many points. Let’s take the under.

Pick: Under 51.5

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