2010 College Football Predictions: The 2010 college football season kicks off Thursday night with seven good games and even a couple of great games on the line-up. One thing that makes the college game so great is everybody thinks they are an expert. I – Reno Gold – have at times been accused of being an expert and sometimes, probably by sheer luck, my accusers are correct. Of course we will forget about those weeks my college football predictions weren't so good.
First, lets look at Thursdays big games. Now don't get confused with what is a big game and what is a great game. Marshall visiting No. 2 ranked Ohio State is a big game in terms of national attention, but how great it will be remains to be seen. My prediction for the Thundering Herd, +28 1/2-chalk underdogs (SBGglobal.com) , is they will do four things Thursday night. They will show up at Ohio Stadium; take a sound beating; collect a fat paycheck; and bus back to Huntington, W.V. where they came from. Don't look for any drama here. The only question is – by how many points do the Buckeyes win by? Historically, Ohio State does not pile up the points in these openers, even when playing inferior competition such as Marshall. I'm selling here and predicting Marshall covers +28 1/2. This game willl be carried by the BTN.
USM vs. South Carolina – I avoid calling South Carolina USC even though they are called USC by folks in South Carolina. But not wanting to confuse the University of South Carolina with someone else, I will just refer to them as South Carolina. South Carolina hosts the University of Southern Mississippi (USM) at Williams-Brice Stadium with kick-off time set for 7:35 pm (ESPN). Sportsbook SBG Global lists the Gamecocks as 14-chalk favorites versus the Golden Eagles with a 47 total. My prediction here is the Gamecocks take care of business and win by three touchdowns. Anything less will be a disappointment, considering Carolina is touted as a serious challenger in the SEC East. I do not see how the total will stay under 47 points either. If USM's secondary is as bad as it was last year, the sky's the limit for a Steve Spurrier coached team.
Minnesota vs. Middle Tennessee State U: Some of you are smirking I know. Let me tell you right now, don't laugh at the Sun Belt. This league has handed a few teams from BCS leagues their heads in recent years including Alabama, Oklahoma State, Texas A&M, to name a few. MTSU whipped Maryland twice in a home and home series in 2008-09. SBG Global has the Golden Gophers lined as 3-chalk favorites in this one with a 48 1/2 total. Trust me when I say, smart money will be all over the Blue Raiders +3 at home. The top of the Sun Belt is better than the lower ranks of the BIG TEN. This game can be seen on ESPNU, Thursday 7:35 pm Eastern.
Pittsburgh vs. Utah: By far, the game between the Panthers and Utes at Rice-Echles Stadium in Salt Lake City is the best matchup of the night. Too bad few people will see it as it's carried by VERSUS network who happens to have the Mountain West Conference broadcast rights. SBG Global lists Utah as a 2 1/2-chalk favorite with a 49 total. What this line tells us is, the game is a PICK but the book is giving the Utes 2 1/2 points because its in their stadium. I agree – Utes win by a field goal and the total sails OVER 49 points.
USC @ Hawaii – 11 pm ESPN – Line, USC by 21, 49 total. This game will go over the 49 total in the third quarter – take Hawaii +21.
N.Ill @ Iowa State – 8 pm FSN – Line, ISU by 3, 48 total. I like the renewed energy at Ames. Take the Cyclones giving the points.
FAU @ UAB – 8 pm (not televised) – Line, UAB by -15, 51 total. I like the Owls getting +15.
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