(3-9, 7-4 ATS in 2009)
Colorado State Rams
(3-9, 2-9 ATS in 2009)
Instate rivals duke it out on the neutral turf of Invesco Field at Mile High Stadium on Saturday afternoon in the NCAA football betting clash between the Colorado State Rams and the Colorado Buffaloes.
The Buffs are getting ready for their swan song in the Big XII, and it very well could be the last go around for HC Dan Hawkins as well. Hawkins has been nothing short of a major disappointment for Colorado since coming over from Boise State, and he is clearly on one of the hottest seats in the entire country. It appears as though Hawkins’ son, Cody isn’t going to be the one under center this year for the Buffaloes, as he had a woeful year in 2009, completing just 50.6 percent of his passes for 1,277 yards with 10 TDs and 11 picks. Instead, the man who replaced him, Tyler Hansen is going to get the nod. Hansen went 129-of-230 for 1,438 yards with eight TDs and seven INTs in 2009. He’ll love trying to force the football into the hands of WR Scotty McKnight, who is going to be expected to haul in double digits worth of passes in Colorado’s biggest games. McKnight is coming off of a year in which he had 76 catches, 893 yards, and six TDs.
Only 12 starters are back from last year’s Colorado State team that went just 3-9, which is probably a good thing considering the fact that the Rams had one of the worst ATS marks in the country last year at 2-9. True freshman QB Pete Thomas is going to be the starter in this game, as he tries to resurrect a passing attack that averaged just 206.6 yards per game a year ago and ranked 76th in the country. More importantly, finding a way to get points on the board is key. Averaging 21.7 points per game won’t cut it against Colorado, nor will it keep the Rams afloat in the offense happy Mountain West. As for the defense, averaging allowing 29.8 points per game was a bit of an expectation, as the unit was young last year and might be almost as young this season. Keep a close eye on junior S Elijah-Blu Smith, who could be the best defensive player on the field at any given time for either side.
This is an ugly game to try to make a selection on. We could just as easily see either one of these teams winning be three touchdowns, though we tend to believe that the route for either team getting there won’t be a pretty one. We are going to go with the hot hand in this series, as the Rams pulled the big upset last year in the form of a 23-17 victory. The underdog has covered ten of the L/13 NCAA football lines in this series, and we are going to hope that that rings true once again. Back the Rams and take the hefty point spread.
Selection: Colorado State Rams +12.5