College Football Pick
Wisconsin may have had one of the more impressive wins in the first weekend of college football action, at least through three quarters. After going down by 10 points early, the Badgers went on to Score59 unanswered points to beat Utah State, easily covering. They’ll take on a Florida Atlantic team that failed to live up to high expectations in LAne Kiffin’s first Game in charge. And so, the Badgers are hefty -31.5 point home favorites as seen at 5Dimes Sportsbook.
There was some worry for Wisconsin fans after a slow start that had them thinking maybe their team wasn’t as good as projections. But that all quickly dissipated as the defense dominated and the ground Game did whatever it wanted against the Aggies. In all, they ran for 234 yards as a team, but maybe more importantly, got Alex Hornibrook some early confidence in his sophomore season as he threw for 244 yards and three touchdowns. If Wisconsin wants to compete with the best teams in the country, it will need improved quarterback play and that falls to Hornibrook. But again, he probably won’t be needed much against the Owls as Bradrick Shaw and Jonathan Taylor could combine for 150-plus rushing yards again.
Florida Atlantic either didn’t know what to do against Navy’s triple-option, or simply don’t have a good run defense. It’s more likely the latter after allowing 245 rushing yards per Game last year. If that’s the case again, Wisconsin will have its way, similar to what Navy did (416 rushing yards), albeit to a lesser extent. If the Owls can’t stop Wisconsin’s ground Game, that will make things extremely tough for this team to cover.
The Owls had issues moving the ball against Navy’s defense so there’s no telling what will happen against an even better group. FAU ran for 40 yards on 1.7 yards per carry (sacks included) and may not surpass that total against the Badgers. Daniel Parr was given the keys under center for the Owls, which was somewhat surprising, although he wasn’t terrible. He threw for 281 yards and a couple touchdowns, but again, led the offense to just 19 points against a mediocre Navy defense.
Wisconsin is coming off a Game against a similarly troubled offense that couldn’t do anything on the ground to go with iffy quarterback play. If the Owls defense can’t stop the Badgers running Game, this Game could be even uglier than the first one, if not a repeat.
All signs point to the Badgers being able to run the ball just fine and on the other end, there’s no guarantee the Owls will even find the end zone. Parr, with limited collegiate experience, could have everything on him to try and Scoreagainst one of the best defenses in the nation.
Our Pick – Wisconsin -33 and OVER 59.5