College Football Week 1: BYU vs. LSU Betting Lines & Game Info

Posted by Kenny Bell on Friday,September 1, 2017 9:58, EDT in

It has been a terrible week of flooding in the Houston area, so the scheduled BYU-LSU game there for Saturday was smartly moved to New Orleans. That should only help the No. 13 Tigers as the Big Easy is only about an hour from campus. It’s still technically a neutral-site game. LSU is favorite to win in the NCAAF odds against BYU in College Football Week 1.

College Football Week 1: BYU vs. LSU Betting Lines & Game Info

When: Saturday, Sept. 2, 9:30 PM ET
Where: Mercedes-Benz Superdome, New Orleans
TV: ESPN
Stream: WatchESPN
Radio: ESPN 960 AM (BYU) /  98.1 FM (LSU)
Opening College Football Week 1 Lines: LSU -15.5 (47)

Weather Forecast

  • Chance of Thunderstorm: 27°C/80°F
  • Humidity: 82%
  • Precipitation: 39%
  • Wind: 3 mph ESE
  • Cloud Cover: 50%
  • Type of Stadium: N/A

Why Bet On BYU?

The Cougars were one of 10 teams to play last week but they sure didn’t look very good – perhaps they were looking past FCS school Portland State. The Cougars escaped with a 20-6 victory.

Freshman tight end Matt Bushman led BYU receivers with 56 yards on three receptions. Squally Canada had a career-best 98 rushing yards on 16 attempts with a touchdown, while Kavika Fonua had 59 yards on seven carries in his first game at running back. Junior quarterback Tanner Mangum completed 16 of 27 passes for 194 yards and a touchdown.

The Cougars outgained the Vikings 365 yards to 220 yards. BYU had three sacks and eight tackles for loss. BYU was +1 in the turnover margin. Last season, BYU was 6-3 with a positive turnover margin. The Cougars won their fourth-consecutive season opener. BYU improved to 59-32-2 in openers and 10-2 since 2006.

What Can We Expect from the Cougars’ Offense?

BYU returns a lot of experience on the offensive line, including three seniors in the middle with Tejan Koroma (39 starts), Tuni Kanuch (17 starts) and Keyan Norman (14 starts). As a unit, the Cougar offensive line has 89 combined starts. BYU rushed for 171 rushing yards against the Vikings. Last season, BYU was 8-1 when rushing for 150 yards or more and 1-3 when under the mark.

A win over the Tigers would BYU its first win over a ranked team since a 35-24 win over No. 20 Boise State in Provo on Sept. 12, 2015. The Cougars have gone 3-7 in their last 10 outings against ranked teams. BYU is 5-5 in game two of the season over the past 10 seasons. The point differential in those 10 seasons went from +9.8 in BYU’s favor in game one to +13.4 in game two. This is BYU’s first-ever meeting vs. LSU.

Why Bet On LSU?

LSU has now been ranked in the Top 25 going into week one for 17 straight years. To no surprise, Coach Ed Orgeron has named Danny Etling as his starting QB. Etling threw for 2,123 yards and 11 touchdowns in 11 games last year. He took over as the Tigers’ starter in week three and finished with a 7-3 record. Having two weeks to prepare should hugely help LSU, while BYU only had one.

“It can work both ways, obviously,” Orgeron said when asked if he thought it would be an advantage for BYU to have a game under its belt before facing the Tigers. “They can get the kinks out. That’s why we have had preseason games. We tried to match that, but I don’t know if you can match it. Obviously, it gives us an advantage because we get to see them play; they don’t get to see us play. They still don’t know what we are going to run on offense. BYU can guess, but they don’t know what we are going to run. I think it works both ways.”

Is LSU a safe bet in College Football Week 1 against BYU?

How Well Has the Coach Done?

Orgeron compiled a record of 6-2 last season after taking over as the Tigers’ interim head coach. Orgeron was named the 33rd head coach in school history following LSU’s 54-39 win over Texas A&M on November 24.

Running back Derrius Guice is one of the most electric ball carriers in the country. Guice set school records for the longest run in LSU history (96 yards against Arkansas) and single-game rushing record (285 yards against Texas A&M) during his sophomore season.

LSU’s defense should be great but the best player on it, Arden Key, won’t play. Key, the junior and All-America edge rusher, is not yet fully recovered from having shoulder surgery in May and will miss the opener. It’s is the latest in a drama-filled past few months for Key, the school’s single-season sack record holder. He missed spring practice while taking a leave of absence from the team and then underwent the shoulder procedure in late May, mending an issue that lingered through last season. Orgeron said that Ray Thornton, Andre Anthony or K’Lavon Chaisson could start in his place. All three are freshmen.

The Tigers have won 19 of their last 21 season-openers. The only two losses during that stretch have come at Virginia Tech in 2002 and Wisconsin in 2016.

College Football Week 1 Betting Trends

  • Brigham Young is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games
  • The total has gone UNDER in 8 of Brigham Young’s last 9 games
  • Louisiana State is 6-2 ATS in its last 8 games
  • Louisiana State is 6-2 SU in its last 8 games

Expert College Football Week 1 Prediction

LSU is 54-1 in regular-season non-conference games since 2002. The Tigers will win here, too, but I’d take all those points. BYU is better than it looked last week.