Early 2016 NCAA Football Betting Analysis

Posted by Jordan Walters on Wednesday,May 11, 2016 12:08, EDT in

Did you know that the 2016 college football season is only a little more than 100 days away? And did you know that the most American of sports actually begins on Aug. 27 in Sydney, Australia, between California and Hawaii? The Bears opened as 22.5-point favorites on college football odds and you can now find lines for all Week 1 games.

A Brief Report on the Early NCAA Football Betting Analysis

The Sydney College Football Cup will take place at the 83,500-seat ANZ Stadium originally constructed for the 2000 Olympic Games. The contest will mark the first college football game to ever be played in Sydney and the first in Australia since games in Melbourne in 1985 and 1987. Cal will be playing a football game outside of the United States for only the second time in school history. Cal and Washington State battled to a 17-17 tie on Nov. 28, 1987, in Tokyo, Japan.

Cal was a bowl team last year but lost one of the best quarterbacks in school history in Jared Goff, who was the No. 1 overall pick in the NFL Draft by the Los Angeles Rams. Redshirt sophomore Chase Forrest, Goff’s understudy last fall, is the leader to replace him. His competition includes junior Luke Rubenzer, back at quarterback after a year playing safety, redshirt freshman Ross Bowers and incoming freshman Max Gilliam, who graduated from high school at midyear and is already on campus. Forrest played in three games in 2015, completing 10 of 18 passes for 162 yards with a touchdown and an interception.

Cal and Hawaii have split four previous meetings with the Rainbow Warriors a 21-7 winner the last time the teams played in 1994 in Berkeley. Cal won in both 1968 and 1993, while Hawaii captured the first-ever game between the teams in 1934.

The season kicks off in the United States on Sept. 1 with a handful of games. The marquee matchup of Week 1 is Alabama against USC at AT&T Stadium in Arlington on that first Saturday. Both the defending national champion Tide and Trojans have to replace their starting QBs from last season. Alabama also said goodbye to running back and Heisman Trophy winner Derrick Henry.

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Alabama is a 13-point favorite leads the all-time series 5-2 over USC, but the Trojans enjoyed two historic victories over the Tide in Birmingham. Led by African-American fullback Sam Cunningham, tailback Clarence Davis and quarterback Jimmy Jones, USC pounded Alabama 42-21 in 1970 serving as the catalyst for the integration of Southern football. In 1978, the two national powers split the national title despite the Trojans 24-14 win over the Tide. USC is 21-11-1 all-time against the SEC.

Another matchup of storied programs is Notre Dame at Texas on Sunday, Sept. 4. It originally was to be played on Saturday but was moved to Sunday as the lone game that day for national TV purposes. Texas and Notre Dame have combined to win over 72 percent of their games in their histories and have met in football 11 times dating back to 1913 with the Fighting Irish holding a 9-2 advantage. The last meeting in Austin pitted No. 6 Texas vs. No. 9 Notre Dame in 1996. That game came down to the wire as the Fighting Irish kicked a 39-yard field goal as time expired in a 27-24 victory. Charlie Strong was a Notre Dame assistant coach at the time. Notre Dame crushed visiting Texas to open the 2015 season. The Irish are 6-point favorites.