Time for another year of picking winners. Always hard to do in the early season. The following are the games that I think offer the best plays this week (spreads courtesy of BetUs):
Oregon at Boise State (64 total)–I think there is going to be a lot of points scored in this one. Should be your usual entertaining late-night WAC/PAC style game. The total is only 64 so I will take the OVER. The score? How about:
Oregon 42, Boise State 38.
Ohio State (-21.5) vs. Navy–I can see this one being pretty ugly for a couple quarters. In the end, I think Ohio State puts it together and pulls off the cover thanks to big plays from Terrelle Pryor and the defense.
Ohio State 30, Navy 6
Notre Dame (-14.5) vs. Nevada–Picking Nevada here is the trendy thing, but I think it has resulted in a favorable line for the Irish. The Wolfpack are scrappy and they feature a talented offense, but I don’t think they can stop the Irish. In a shootout at Notre Dame Stadium, I like Notre Dame.
Notre Dame 48, Nevada 31
Illinois (-6.5) vs. Missouri–I think the Illini are going to have a bit of a juggernaut on offense. The Tigers will have trouble stopping them and keeping up. Big game for Juice Williams.
Illinois 41, Missouri 24
Stanford (-16.5) at Washington State–The Cardinal are my surprise team in the Pac-10 this year and I think they get off to a good start here behind the passing of Andrew Luck.
Stanford 38, WSU 14
Alabama (-6.5) vs. Virginia Tech–I am a big believer in Alabama this year and I think Greg McElroy is going to be an upgrade at quarterback. I like the Tide to roll here.
Alabama 24, Virginia Tech 10
Maryland (+21.5) at Cal–The Bears are good this year, but this line is too big. Cal wins, but Maryland keeps it respectable.
Cal 35, Maryland 23
San Jose State (+33.5) at USC–I think this is another line that is out of whack. USC is starting a true freshman quarterback and Dick Tomey is sure to find ways to exploit that inexperience. USC couldn’t cover against Idaho two years ago, so I don’t see a cover here.
USC 31, San Jose State 10
Central Michigan (+14) at Arizona–I like CMU’s chances for the outright upset. Dan LeFevour is a great player and Arizona’s offense is going to take a while to get up to speed. Chippewas win in another black eye for the Pac-10.
Central Michigan 28, Arizona 24
LSU (-17) at Washington–The question here is, how many points is Jake Locker worth? A lot, I think, but not enough to prevent a blowout.
LSU 45, Washington 17