Season record: 1-5
It’s been a rough start, and I seem to have miscalculated the severity of Nevada’s fall from grace. The Wolfpack is now 2-0, and I will no longer be picking on them like a buzzard. Let’s get the ship righted this week!
Boston College +3 @ Virginia Tech
I watched Virginia Tech lose to Old Dominion, and I cannot believe that team should be favored in this matchup. The offense looked stale, and VT couldn’t muster much, even against an Old Dominion squad that looked worse than I thought they might.
Of course, Boston College didn’t fare much better, but I think they are a team to watch in the ACC, and all the Eagles’ preseason conference goals are intact. I believe Boston College is the better team and probably learned a tough lesson against Rutgers. This should be low scoring, with both teams routinely playing to the under in conference games over the last two years. Phil Jurkovec should get his team right and start conference play with a big win in Blacksburg, but the field goal cushion is a comfortable play.
UAB -6.5 @ Liberty
Alabama-Birmingham is quietly a premium G5 program, but I was concerned they’d struggle after heart and soul head coach Bill Clark was forced to resign due to health concerns. It was only one game against FCS Alabama A&M, but UAB showed me it’s business as usual for the Blazers. They ran the ball and played lights-out defense, as we’re used to seeing.
Liberty won their first game against Southern Mississippi, but it was not easy. The Eagles took them into overtime, where Liberty emerged victorious 29-27. I have many doubts about how Liberty will score on UAB. Southern Miss returned many starters on defense, but that was from a bottom third unit in 2021. On the other hand, the Blazers had a top ten run defense last year and a top 25 defense in terms of EPA/play. A line under a touchdown is too light for my taste.
Colorado St. -9 vs. Middle Tennessee State
I like the Rams under Jay Norvell and am excited to see what they can do in year one. Their first test was essentially unfair, going up against 2021 playoff team Michigan. Well, MTSU is not Michigan. The Blue Raiders were walloped by FCS graduate James Madison 44-7 and showed no real… well… anything.
I think this line may scare some away, but Colorado State will score, and their defense held Michigan to three field goals (and two touchdowns) in the first half last week, showing some toughness. Middle Tennessee feels like it’s a bottom, bottom, bottom type team, like UMass level bad. Colorado State had a rough opener, but I think they will be a fun team to follow and get started this week at home.