Three Bold College Football Betting Prediction for 2017
Jake Hubenak Wins Texas A&M QB JobTexas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin was the darling of college football in 2012 when the Aggies were 11-2 in their first season in the SEC led by a quarterback named Johnny Manziel. That raised expectations in College Station, but the Aggies have never come close to matching that record. They have been 8-5 each of the past three seasons. So the heat is on Sumlin this year, and he still has to decide on a quarterback.
Who Could Become the QB for Texas A&M?I believe that will be senior Jake Hubenak. He’s battling redshirt freshman Nick Starkel, and freshman Kellen Mond. Hubenak did pretty well in limited action in 2016. Hubenak threw 104 passes and averaged 8.5 yards per attempt. Although it was too small of a sample to rank among the conference leaders, consider that the SEC leader in this category, Austin Allen, averaged 8.6. It’s critical to have a strong leader under center. The Aggies had that last year in Trevor Knight. They don’t so far this year. And that’s the question mark that will likely define this team. Mond probably has the most upside but it’s rare to start a true freshman in the SEC.
Mason Rudolph Will Be Big 12 Player Of YearYes, Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield is a returning Heisman Trophy finalist, but I predict that the Big 12 Offensive Player of the Year will be Oklahoma State’s Mason Rudolph. Rudolph is the league’s only returning 4,000-yard passer after tossing for 4,091 yards in 2016. Not only should Rudolph be able to repeat that performance, he could reach the 5,000-yard threshold, given that he’ll be playing with what might be the best receiving corps in college football. That group is led by James Washington. Even though he had a great season, he’s not the current favorite to win the Heisman Trophy this season. He stands at +1300 to win. The top betting favorite is Sam Darnold from USC, who’s at +380.
How Well Did Oklahoma State Do with Mason Rudolph?Rudolph targeted Washington 131 times in 2016, connecting 71 times for 1,356 yards and 10 touchdowns, at 10.4 yards per target.Oklahoma State had a few ways to get Washington isolated on corners outside. One was to pair him with a slot receiver who could threaten the seam and prevent help from moving wider. Running back Justice Hill returns after an 1,142-yard freshman season, and slot man Jalen McCleskey is back as well. They’ll have help from a line that returns three starters after hitting its stride.
A 2-Loss Team Makes College Football PlayoffThe College Football Playoff has been in existence for three years and no two-loss team has made the national semifinals. That will change in 2017. Sure, this is a longer shot. Consider that through the entirety of the BCS era, the only two-loss team to make the championship game was LSU in 2007. That was with two teams. But let’s say that Florida State beats Alabama in Week 1 and loses close games to Clemson and Florida. All those things are possible. If the Noles still were able to win the ACC title, there’s almost no way they would be kept out.
Will Florida State be Favored in the College Football Odds?The Seminoles should win in at least 10 games, in large part due to the return of QB Deondre Francois as well as an elite defensive unit led by both established stars (Derwin James, Tarvarus McFadden) and soon-to-be household names like 6-foot- 1, 312-pound nose guard Derrick Nnadi. After redshirting his first year in Tallahassee, Francois has been as good as advertised. Francois went on to finish his redshirt freshman campaign with 3,350 passing yards and 20 touchdowns. Ohio State could lose to Oklahoma and Michigan this season yet still win the Big Ten title and get in the playoff.
What about Notre Dame?As usual, the Irish will play a tough schedule. If the Irish were to finish 10-2 with only close losses to, say, Georgia and USC, then they would have a great argument to get in. The only Power 5 conferences I think wouldn’t have a chance to get a two-loss team into the playoff would be the Pac-12 and Big 12.
Latest College Football Odds to Win the 2018 ChampionshipNow that we have a better look at some of the college football betting predictions, we’re going to take a quick look at the latest odds to win the 2018 National Championship. Here are the top favorites to win:
- Alabama Crimson Tide (+300)
- Ohio State Buckeyes (+450)
- Florida State Seminoles (+600)
- USC Trojans (+600)
- Oklahoma Sooners (+800)