We're changing things up a little bit this college football season. While we will still be giving out our collective picks for every SEC game each week (those will be posted every Friday), our college football expert, Alex Hill, will be taking his top weekly bets nationwide. So on every Thursday throughout the college football season, check back in to see which games across the country Alex is putting the most money, and why. I hope you found this article early enough to place your bets on these games, because Alex is going 4-0 in week 1 to start out the season.
Ohio State -13.5 @ Minnesota
âThere are whispers that this is a look-ahead game for Ohio State, and I couldn't disagree more. They've had the entire offseason to prepare to come out and show the world how dominant their offense is. And it's a Thursday game, so they know they have extra time to prepare for next weekend's matchup against Oregon. For me, this game is simple. There will be few teams capable of putting up points like Ohio State will this season. And their defense, although not great as of late, are proficient at stopping the run. Mohamed Ibrahim will dominate in many games this year, this just won't be one of them. Ohio State is the better team and they matchup well against the outmanned Golden Gophers. The Buckeyes by 14 or more. Cash it.
West Virginia -3.0 @ Maryland
West Virginia is the better, more disciplined team. The only way I see this bet losing is if Taulia Tagovailoa reaches the potential and precedent his brother set, but it's hard to forecast something that may never happen. IF it does, look out, but for now I'm taking my chances with an elite defense and a senior quarterback who can play game manager. My bet is also persuaded by the coaching matchup here. Neal Brown has a 46-27 coaching record with his teams improving every year but one, where his 2018 Troy team went from 11-2 to just 10-3. Mike Locksley, however, has amassed an astonishing and abysmal record of 8-43 as a head coach at the collegiate level. Hard to back him until he shows legitimate progress first. Get your record players out and put on John Denver's "Take Me Home, Country Roads" as we celebrate with the Mountaineers Saturday night. WVU by 3 or more.
Syracuse @ Ohio Under 56.0
Okay, hear me out. With as terrible as the Orange were last year, the defense wasn't THAT bad. The problem is they had a better chance of scoring against a blindfolded powderpuff team. Meanwhile, Ohio's two wins came against teams with a combined 1-10 record. They also only averaged 18 passes per game last year, meaning they love to run the ball. Which, aside from getting smacked around by Notre Dame their very last game, Syracuse seriously cracked down in that area. Their front line is really experienced, but unfortunately the rest of the defense is much younger. We just have to assume the defense comes prepared and that we don't hear De'Montre Tuggle's (Ohio RB) name a lot during the game, otherwise our bets are in trouble. Under 56 in a game I think will go much lower.
Georgia +3 Vs Clemson (Neutral Site)
Full disclosure: I was telling people before last season started that 2020 was Georgia's year (though their fans have been saying that for awhile). Sure, I was wrong. But I'm telling you right now, this is their year. Of years past, the defense was a bulwark, and the offense was competent, but not strong enough to compete against the great teams. This team is like those of recent years, except on steroids. An incredible QB, the scariest defense we will see in CFB (until they all go pro), and a running back group full of players I'd kill to have on my team. The Tigers are obviously still coached by Dabo, Justyn Ross is returning, and DJ Uiagelelei will be properly welcomed into the national media spotlight (credit where it's due). I'm expecting a close game, with Georgia edging it out. But in the end, we will be the winners for getting to watch such a star-studded week 1 matchup. The Bulldogs win and hurl Kirby on the fast-track to playing in the national championship game.
Written by Nick Swatson and Alex Hill