With each passing day we’re a wee bit closer to college football season. Before you know it, the leaves will be changing, autumn punch will be flowing and the pigskin will be flooding our living rooms once again. Little offseason reminders such as the early betting lines from Week 1 help remind that we’re inching along – slowly but surely.
Some notable games include the border battle between North Carolina and South Carolina. Right now, the Gamecocks sit at 7.5 point favorites over the Tar Heels. Interestingly for South Carolina is that they’re bookending the season with ACC matchups (Clemson).
Jim Harbaugh will be a slight underdog in his first game as Michigan’s head coach. The Wolverines sit at +3.5 or their road contest against Utah. The Utes beat up on Michigan in The Big House last season, shutting out the Wolverines in the second half and snapping a 17-game non-conference home win streak.
Texas A&M is a slight favorite over Arizona State in Houston’s NRG Stadium. This despite the Sun Devils going 10-3 last season and having the nation’s 16th-best scoring offense – compared to the Aggies rolling to a lackluster, unranked 8-5 finish.
What once appeared to be one of the premier non-conference games, Alabama-Wisconsin, has lost some of its luster thanks to Gary Andersen’s departure to Oregon State. Losing its head coach and Heisman finalist Melvin Gordon puts the Badgers at a disadvantage in the eyes of line makers. Paul Chryst will begin his Wisconsin coaching career as 12.5 point underdog to Nick Saban and the Crimson Tide.
Texas started slowly under Charlie Strong, but caught some traction once November hit. Conversely, Notre Dame came out of the gates humming, only to have the bottom fall out last November. With the traditional powerhouses prepared to open 2015 against each other, it appears as though Texas will be 12.5 point underdogs on the road in South Bend.
Despite both teams having potentially potent offenses, Louisville is a 12.5 point underdog against Auburn in the 2015 Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game. The Cardinals finished with one more in the win column last year than did the Tigers, though Auburn ended the year at No. 23 in the Coaches’ Poll, Louisville at No. 24. The potential for a suffocating defense under Will Muschamp, coupled with a de facto home game for Auburn (a 90-minute burn down I-85) both play to the Tigers’ favor.
And while it’s not, perhaps, the most marquee of matchups, Virginia Tech and Ohio State do make for an intriguing game. After all, it was the Hokies who handed Ohio State its only loss last season (in The Horseshoe, no less). What a difference a year makes, as Frank Beamer’s boys are nearly three-touchdown home ‘dogs against the defending champs.
Below is a look at some of the college football Week 1 lines; for a complete list, click here.
2015 College Football Week 1 Lines
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