One week of college football is in the books. Last week I gave my five picks for week 1. With Week 2 quickly approaching there’s some good bets to look forward to. Most people tend to overreact to the first week of college football and hopefully I’m not one of those people. Here’s my top-5 picks for the second week of college football.
*Picks in italics, odds courtesy of FanDuel.
#1 - Stanford (+1.5) vs. USC
I didn’t think it was possible, but I sincerely feel awful for USC football. Star quarterback JT Daniels tore his ACL & MCL in week one. USC’s backup Jack Sears decided to transfer and entered the transfer portal less than a week before their first game. Which means USC will have to rely on true freshman Kedon Slovis. The former 3-star QB didn’t exactly have a bunch of scholarship offers from other P5 schools and now he’ll face a tough Stanford defense that just limited Northwestern to seven points. Stanford’s QB (KJ Costello) is questionable, but even if he isn’t ready to go Davis Mills (junior/former 5-star) is more than capable. I don’t see anyway USC is winning this one, despite it being a home game. Take Stanford and the 1.5 point buffer.
#2 - Oregon State (+6.5) vs. Hawaii
I had faith Oregon State would cover last week and they (barely) let me down. The new and improved defense unfortunately looked a lot like 2018’s defense, but I think Oklahoma State had a lot to do with that. Hawaii doesn’t have a Chubba Hubbard or speedy quarterback to rack up easy yards. What they do have is a very difficult to stop passing attack led by the nation’s top WR in Cedric Byrd II. He’ll be catching passes from Cole McDonald or Chevan Cordeiro if McDonald throws 4 interceptions again. I see this game playing out similarly to the Beavers game against Nevada last season (hopefully the Beavs hit the field goal this time).
#3 - Boise State (-10.5 ) vs. Marshall
Boise State is coming off a massive come-from-behind win to knock off Florida State. They’ll return home to their friendly blue turf and face Marshall. I’m not sure why Boise State is constantly underrated since they’ve been a dominant team for decades now, but here we are. Bronco true freshman quarterback, Hank Bachmeier, (Oregon State recruited him hard) looks like the next great Boise State QB. I think the Broncos will have no trouble covering the spread here.
#4 - Washington (-14) vs. Cal
I’ll admit 13.5 points is a lot of points to be spotting a conference opponent, especially this early in the season. Cal’s offense is not good though, they had to hand it off to their running back (Christopher Brown Jr.) 36 times just to beat UC Davis! Washington on the other hand looks like they haven’t missed a beat with Jacob Eason taking over at QB. Washington is going to turn this game into a blowout.
#5 - Ole Miss (-7) vs. Arkansas
I don’t think either of these teams are particularly good and neither team impressed in the first week of college football. Ole Miss lost to Memphis and Arkansas squeaked by Portland State. Remember when Oregon State squeaked by PSU in 2017? They went 1-11 that season, I think Arkansas is in for a rough season. Take Ole Miss I think this line is an overreaction to their loss to a good Memphis team.
Honorable Mention Picks: Utah (-22) vs. Northern Illinois... Nebraska (-3.5) vs. Colorado..
Last week my picks went (2-2-1). Hawaii and Boise State were both underdog winners; Wake Forest pushed and Oregon State/Northwestern were losers. The losses were brutal though; Oregon State didn’t cover by half a point (thanks for going for two and failing... twice). The other game that lost was Northwestern (+6.5) against Stanford. It looked like that pick was a surefire winner, until this happened with less than 30 seconds left...
RIP Hunter Johnson and anyone who had Northwestern +6.5— NCAAF Nation (@NCAAFNation247) August 31, 2019
Stanford recovers the Fumble in the End Zone for a TOUCHDOWN and they take a 17-7 lead with a few seconds left. pic.twitter.com/nmD897iyHM
Even if that Northwestern offensive lineman just recovered that fumble in the endzone for a safety Stanford wouldn’t have covered the spread! Gambling definitely isn’t for the faint of heart. Here’s hoping for better luck in week two!