Over 58 in South Carolina vs Tennessee: It looks like Tennessee’s offense is hitting their stride and South Carolina has trouble stopping anyone on defense.
TCU (-4.5) over Oklahoma State: I already hit the over on the Oklahoma State win total but will pick against them at home. TCU has the best player on the field in Trevone Boykin and I think they will win by a touchdown in a shootout.
Arkansas (+10.5) over Ole Miss: Not sure if Arkansas can win straight up but don’t trust the Ole Miss offense to be favored by double-digits. Bret Bielema and the Razorbacks will embrace the underdog role.
Arizona State (+2.5) over Washington State: This is a letdown game for Washington State after falling to Stanford in heartbreaking fashion. Arizona State has two extra days of rest and think they will win straight up.
North Carolina State (+10) over Clemson
Auburn (+7.5) over Ole Miss
Texas Tech (+3) over Oklahoma State
Kentucky (+8.5) over Tennessee
Here are my four best bets for Week 2 in college football. Click each linked for a short writeup of the game that I did for Fansided:
UMass (+13) over Colorado
Over 59.5 in Hawaii vs Ohio State
Under 52 in Georgia vs Vanderbilt
Over 61.5 in Oklahoma vs Tennessee
Click here for my other work on Fansided, including my daily fantasy preview.
It’s a slow time in the sports calendar, which makes it a perfect time to start preparing for football season. I looked through the conference schedules for the SEC, Big Ten, Big 12, ACC and Pac-12 to look for favorable situations to support teams and bad situations to fade teams. Games are at least two months away, and I wouldn’t automatically pick these games but it’s something that could be helpful down the road. I will post the other four conferences next week. For now, here are games you should keep an eye on in the SEC:
September 26- Missouri at Kentucky: Missouri has three favorable non-conference games before their first SEC game at Kentucky. The Tigers will likely be a favorite against an up-and-coming Wildcats team that needs to win these games if they want to make a bowl. Missouri plays South Carolina the week after. Last year the Tigers shockingly lost to Indiana the week before playing the Gamecocks in a classic “look ahead” situation. Missouri may be looking past Kentucky with bigger games on deck so possibly take Kentucky if they are an underdog in this game.
October 10- Georgia at Tennessee: Georgia is coming off a home game against Alabama. A trip to Knoxville is less than ideal the week after such a big contest for the Bulldogs. The Volunteers host Arkansas the week before and a have a bye the week after. Tennessee might end up being a favorite in this game and I would likely take them if the spread is a south of a field goal.
October 17- Alabama at Texas A&M: Alabama has had favorable conference schedules the last few seasons. However, things change in 2015 as they draw Georgia and Tennessee from the SEC East. They play the two SEC East foes in part of a four-week stretch that also includes games against Arkansas and Texas A&M. The game against Texas A&M is on the road and I can see the Crimson Tide slipping up here. The Aggies will have revenge on their mind after being trounced 59-0 against Alabama last season. Texas A&M also has a favorable early season schedule, and they don’t leave the state of Texas until the eighth week of the season. I don’t know if Alabama will lose this game but I can see them failing to cover the spread.
Tennessee is a four-point favorite against Iowa in the TaxSlayer Bowl. The Volunteers are a young team with shaky offensive line. They probably wouldn’t be a favorite against Iowa on a neutral field in the regular season. However, this is a bowl game and Tennessee has to be thrilled to be in this situation. The Volunteers haven’t been in a bowl game since 2010, and earned six wins this season with a tough schedule.
Iowa had high expectations this season and had a shot to win their division with a very favorable schedule. They finished 7-5 and ended the year with a very disappointing loss to Nebraska at home.
Tennessee’s young offensive stars will show up and the rest of the team will be motivated. I like Butch Jones over Kirk Ferentz in this situation, and the mediocre SEC team over the underachieving Big Ten squad.
Pick: Tennessee (-4) over Iowa
North Carolina State (-5.5) over Tennessee: A young Tennessee team goes on the road to play North Carolina State. The Volunteers just beat a ranked opponent in Butler and I think they have a let down here. North Carolina State was just upset by Wofford so the Wolfpack will be focused.
Mavericks (-6.5) over Pistons: This line might be a little lower than it should because the Mavericks played in New York last night. The Mavericks routed the Knicks, which allowed their starters to rest late and be ready for this game. Dirk Nowitzki, Chandler Parsons and Tyson Chandler all played 25 minutes or less. Detroit is playing their first home game after a west coast trip. I love the Mavericks here but my only hesitation is that Dallas plays San Antonio in their next game on Saturday. They might overlook the Detroit but still think they will win by double-digits.