North Carolina over South Carolina (-2.5)
The spread on this game is backward. UNC should be favored by a field goal rather than the other way around. Expect North Carolina to pound the ball at the still suspect SC defense and then utilize Marquise Williams’ arm to get the ball to their solid WR corps. UNC returns eight lineman that saw the field in 2014 while returns just three. UNC’s run game will control the game, and their defensive line will eat up the Gamecocks to give them the win. Take the 2.5 points just to be safe, but the moneyline (+120) really is the best value play.
Utah (-4.5) over Michigan
Everyone is all excited about Jim Harbaugh’s return to college football, and well they should be, but he simply does not have the talent this season to get the job done against top competition. Utah absolutely represents top competiton, especially when they are at home like in this game. Devontae Booker will have a field day behind his excellent offensive line, and the Utah defense will make the Wolverine offense look pedestrian all game. Michigan’s inconsistent run game and unknown passing game will combine for disaster in Salt Lake City.
Arizona St. over Texas A&M (-3)
There’s really only one concern in this game for Arizona St., and that’s where the game is being played. It’s a semi-home game for the Aggies in Houston. Aside from location, the Sun Devils are better in almost every aspect of the game aside from receivers. The problem for the Aggies will be the fact that the ASU defense will put pressure on Kyle Allen all night and the strong ASU secondary should be able to keep up with the TA&M receivers. Should be a high scoring game, which usually renders a field goal line useless, with ASU coming out on top.
Boise St. (-10.5) over Washington
This has much more to do with Washington than it does to do with the blue-turf Broncos. UW lost WAY too much for them to be successful in 2015. New QB, limited receiving corps, completely new O-line, and six new starters on the front seven. I love Chris Peterson and think the Huskies will eventually be a force in the Pac 12, but this is going to be a long year. Boise St. meanwhile returns most of their star power and will be chomping at the bit to beat up on their old coach. They’ll run and run and run until they can’t run anymore on the Huskies’ front and will win this one easily. Boise St. very well may go undefeated this year, and this is just the first stop on the road.