The Cornhuskers are going to be a popular play against the Golden Eagles during college football’s opening weekend, are they are known for starting the season in the victory column. Let’s find out if you should ride the wave and add them to your college football picks on Saturday.
The College Football Pick
By: Jeff Grant -
The Golden Eagles must be given some respect in this matchup, considering they’ve actually outgained the Huskers in two of the three meetings in this series since 1999. That said, it’s hard to look past Cornhuskers dominance in season openers.
I’m going to suggest that readers take a shot at the total in this situation, as some of the more “squarish books” in the sports betting industry are inviting action on the OVER, which has me landing on the other side.
Johnson has likely watched a lot of film of South Carolina limiting Nebraska to just 253 total yards during last year’s bowl season, considering he served as the school’s defensive coordinator during the regular season before replacing Fedora.
With a new head coach, offensive coordinator and quarterback, I don’t expect Southern Miss to be very sharp on offense, especially inside a raucous Memorial Stadium. Any drives of significance could easily stall with Chris Campbell replacing a four-year starter under center.
The UNDER moves to 7-0 in the Golden Eagles’ last seven games in September, while the Cornhuskers fail to go above the number in their 18th game in 25 tries at home.
Pick: Under 53.5
College Football Pick: Betting the Spread
By: Jeff Grant -
It can’t be stated enough that Southern Miss is coming
off its best season in school history, posting a 12-2 record that culminated in
a 24-17 victory over the Nevada Wolf Pack in the Hawaii Bowl.
The Golden Eagles have supplied college football bettors with a
solid profit in the first month of the season in past years, posting a 35-20
ATS record in that situation since 1992. Problem is—Johnson finds himself in a rebuilding year in
Nebraska presents quite the challenge, possessing a
legitimate Heisman Trophy contender in running back Rex Burkhead, who ran for
1,357 yards on 284 carries in 2011. He
has a great chance of leading the Big Ten Conference in rushing this year,
finishing third in that category a year ago.
Burkhead should find plenty of running room against an
opponent that lacks depth on defense, especially considering its top returnee
is linebacker Jerrion Johnson, who ranked 14th on the unit in terms of tackles.
Saturday’s host owns a clear edge in terms of returning
talent, but most of that group has compiled an 0-6 ATS mark at home versus
non-conference competition over the last two seasons.
With that being said, I’m not exactly excited to take the
points with a side that’s failed to cover eight of their last 11 as underdogs
of 17 or more points.
Check back on Saturday morning for the official college football picks on both the side and
total for this contest.
College Football Pick: Betting the Total
By: Jeff Grant -
It’s expected to be a beautiful 90-degree day in Lincoln
on Saturday when this game kicks off, as Hurricane Isaac’s path will not affect
this contest inside Memorial Stadium.
Total players will notice that the opening number
has risen by just a half-point, settling in at 52.5 at most spots in the sports
If you’re someone that emphasizes betting trends
each week, you’ll definitely be interested in knowing that the Cornhuskers have
gone OVER the total in all five of their home games where the total is 52.5 to
56 since the 2010 campaign. The Golden
Eagles have also played some high-scoring affairs in this situation, going
above the total in five of their six road games with the same point range in
I suggest proceeding with caution if that’s the
route you plan on taking, considering Southern Miss moves on from Davis under
center, while Johnson’s focus is likely on the defensive side of the ball due
to his experience as a high-profile coordinator.
None of these stats may matter if the host decides
to explode offensively like it normally does in season openers, scoring 40-plus
points in 19 of its last 26 lid lifters. The Cornhuskers have also outscored opponents by a 185-44 margin in four
openers under Bo Pelini, which results to an average of 57.2 points per game.
I recommend taking a look at the OVER, but be wary
that over 90 percent of the action has landed on that side up until this point.
By: Jeff Grant -
Starting the season on a winning
The Nebraska Cornhuskers will put
the nation’s longest season-opening win streak on the line Saturday inside
Memorial Stadium, as they’ve managed to win 26 consecutive season
openers. Sports bettors will notice that early action landed on the host about
two weeks after the college football odds were released on Aug. 3, with this
statistic likely moving the market. On the other sideline, the Southern
Miss Golden Eagles have lost seven consecutive road openers, including a 26-20
loss versus the Marshall Thundering Herd as seven-point favorites on September
20 of last year.
Johnson returns to Hattiesburg
Ellis Johnson became the Golden
Eagles’ 19th head coach after spending the last four seasons as Steve
Spurrier’s defensive coordinator with the South Carolina Gamecocks. He
takes over a proud program that has captured a school-record 18 consecutive
winning seasons, including the last four under Larry Fedora, who is now in
charge at North Carolina. Johnson served as an assistant coach at Southern
Miss in 1988-89.
Big Red knows how to pound the rock
Second-year offensive coordinator
Tim Beck has the nation’s top quarterback-running back combo returning to
Lincoln, as Taylor Martinez and Rex Burkhead combined to gain 2,231 rushing
yards in 2011. That mark was 14 yards ahead of Michigan’s duo of Denard
Robinson and Fitzgerald Toussaint.
Davis is tough to replace
Southern Miss is a 20-point road
underdog in this contest due to being one of 12 schools in the country that
doesn’t have a quarterback with starting experience on its roster. Austin
Davis became the first freshman to start for the program in 2008 since the 1991
campaign. He threw for 3,496 yards and gained 509 on the ground last
First two weeks of the season have
been a failure on both sides
From a college football handicapping perspective,
it’s important to point out that both sides have failed to cover the spread in
their first two games of the season the last two years, combining for an 0-8
ATS mark in that situation. I’ll be researching this betting trend in
more detail as the week progresses.
The line move has already taken
place in this Big Ten-Conference USA matchup, as I don’t believe the number
will reach 21. I’m leaning towards the Cornhuskers at this point in time,
but may get cold feet at the betting window due to their 4-10 ATS record at
home over the last two seasons.
Continue monitoring this article
throughout the week and make sure to check out the Week 1 College Football