College Football Week 1 ATS Picks
In just a few weeks, the college football betting season will get underway. Take a look at some of these lines now so that you can take advantage of some real value with your ATS picks. Home teams appear in all caps.
Taking a Closer Look at the College Football Week 1 ATS Picks
Mason: “To open up with South Carolina is exactly what we need. It’s great to be tested early and see what we’ve got.”
— Vanderbilt Football (@VandyFootball) August 2, 2016
South Carolina (-4) over VANDERBILT
The South Carolina Gamecocks have replaced Steve Spurrier with Will Muschamp at the helm, returning to head coaching after coordinating the Auburn defense last year — and having been run out of Florida after four seasons there. As he showed in Florida, Muschamp can put together a solid defense, and despite the fact that the Gamecocks offered their job to Houston’s Tom Herman and Alabama’s Kirby Smart first, they have a solid hire here. Last year, South Carolina beat Vanderbilt in their first game after Spurrier resigned. I think that the Gamecocks still have the offense to win, as wide receiver Pharoh Cooper returns, while Vandy’s defense remains a bit suspect.
Colorado State (+8) over Colorado (in Denver)
This neutral site rivalry features a troubled Colorado team taking on a Colorado State team that is always ready to spoil the program that sees itself as the premier in the state. Last year, the Rams took Colorado to overtime and almost won, but the Buffaloes blocked a field goal and then scored one of their own. If CSU had made one of their two missed field goals in regulation, the game wouldn’t even have made it to the extra frame. The Buffaloes have a real question mark in quarterback Sefo Liufau, as his left foot injury from last November has stil not completely returned. With all that chaos, I like the Rams to keep this game close.
Southern Methodist (-12) over NORTH TEXAS
Big point spread? Yes. Did SMU only win two games last year? Yes. But were they within five points of TCU in the fourth quarter and basically even with Baylor at halftime last year? Yes. The key was defensive depth, which the Mustangs lacked, allowing teams to wear them down and then make a mess out of the third and fourth quarters in many cases. North Texas was not able to do that, though, falling big in Dallas, and now SMU has recruited enough defensive depth, while retaining enough key offensive talent, to win this and cover.
WISCONSIN (+10) over LSU
This game will take place at Lambeau Field instead of on Wisconsin’s home campus, but that should only amplify the home field effect of this game. LSU has a terrific running back in Leonard Fournette but will need to show that they can throw the ball down the field. All Wisconsin has to do is load the box with eight (or even nine men) like LSU’s opponents did in the second half last year, and they will keep this game closer than that immense line.