The Colorado State Rams will look to extract some revenge when they visit in-state rival Colorado in the 2016 edition of the annual Rocky Mountain Showdown!
Thanks to the expert college football picks and betting prediction that you’re about to get, you’re going to have a great chance to kick off your 2016 betting campaign in style!
Rams Tide at Buffaloes Winning Favorites For Week 1
When: Friday, September 2, 2016
Where: Sports Authority Field, Denver, CO
Time: 7:00 PM ET
NCAAF Odds: Colorado -8.5
Why Bet the Colorado State Rams
The Rams are a god bet because they’ve shown they can play with Colorado recently. Colorado State Rams (7-6 SU, 6-7 ATS) had a solid first season under head coach Mike Bobo in 2015 by winning seven games to earn a bowl game berth for the third consecutive season. Junior quarterback Nick Stevens returns to lead the offense after throwing for 2,679 yards and 21 touchdowns last season.
The Rams also have four starters back on the offensive line along and return 2015 rushing leader in junior Dalyn Dawkins. Unfortunately, the Rams lost elite wide receiver Rashard Higgins to the NFL Draft while all-conference tight end Kivon Cartwright graduated. Colorado State averaged a healthy 29.6 points per game in 2015 (62nd) while allowing 27.2 points per game defensively (65th).
On the defensive side of the ball, the Rams will have a new coordinator after Tyson Summers left for Georgia Southern. Not only that, but he Rams lost their entire defensive line and some key players in the secondary. Former linebackers coach Marty English takes over as coordinator and will look to senior linebacker and 2015 leading tackler Kevin Davis (101) to guide a defense that will be inexperienced up front and in the secondary.
Why Bet the Colorado Buffaloes
The Buffaloes are a good bet because they’re playing at home and have more quality D-I talent on their roster than the Rams. Colorado (4-9 SU, 6-7 ATS) was expecting to land former Texas Tech quarterback Davis Webb but he decided to join Cal instead, leaving the Buffaloes with question marks, starting at quarterback.
Three-year starter Sefo Liufau is recovering from a foot fracture that ended his junior season nearly a year ago, but he’ll compete against redshirt freshman Steven Montez for the starting job. Colorado has two returning starters on the offensive line and will get back former starting left tackle Jeromy Irwin as he returns from injury.
Colorado has four running backs returning but they could all very well take a back seat to gifted true freshman Beau Bisharat, the highest-rated recruit in head coach Mike MacIntyre’s tenure. Colorado signed a whopping five wide receivers in its most recent recruiting class as they look to replace record-setting wideout Nelson Spruce. Junior college transfers Kabion Ento and Juwann Winfree are expected to make an immediate contribution.
Colorado averaged 24.6 points per game in 2015 (97th) while allowing 27.4 points per contest defensively (70th). The defensive line should be improved after getting senior Josh Tupou expected back from a year-long suspension while the three different linebackers that have led the Buffs in tackles the past three seasons, are all back in senior Kenneth Olugbode, junior Addison Gillam and sophomore Rick Gamboa.
Free safety Ryan Moeller returns after injuries a year ago while junior Afolabi Laguda and senior Ahkello Witherspoon add experience to the unit. The Buffaloes look very strong in the secondary with safety Tedric Thompson and cornerback Chidobe Awuzie looking like future NFL performers.
Expert Pick & Final Score Prediction
While Colorado State has lost five of the last six meetings against Colorado, they’ve split the last two meetings and narrowly lost to the Buffs 27-24 as a 2.5-point home dog. Colorado went 4-2 ATS in its last six games a year ago, but the Rams have the better offense and plenty of positive motivation, which I just can’t say about Colorado after they lost the Davis Webb sweepstakes.
I’m going with the Colorado State Rams to cover a college football spread I think is a few points too high – by getting the outright road win to record their first victory at Colorado since 2009.