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BYU Cougars vs. LSU Tigers†Odds - Prediction

BYU Cougars (0-0 SU, 0-0 ATS) vs. No. 13 LSU Tigers (0-0 SU, 0-0 ATS)
College Football Week 1
Date/Time: Saturday September 2nd, 2017. 9:30PM (EST)
Where: Mercedes-Benz Superdome New Orleans, L.A.
TV: ESPN
by Jay, NCAA Football Handicapper, Predictem.com

Point Spread: BYU +16/LSU -16
Over/Under Total: 48

The Advocare Texas Kickoff game between the BYU Cougars and no. 13 LSU Tigers will take place this Saturday at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The game was originally slated to take place at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas but was rescheduled due to the catastrophic impacts of Hurricane Harvey. As my thoughts go out to all the families affected in the Houston area, the relocation efforts will put this game back on Louisiana soil possibly benefiting the 13th ranked Tigers as they will now certainly have the home crowd advantage.

I am not sure if the crowd support would play any major role in the outcome of this game. However, it does favor LSU more to have this game moved to their home state to kick off the first full season of the Ed Orgeron era. For the Orgeron era to have longevity, the offense has to be better than we have seen in recent years under Les Miles. Last year, quarterback Danny Etling had flashes of brilliance followed by moments of face palms by missing wide open receivers mirroring resemblance of Brandon Harris, Zach Mettenberger, and other quarterbacks before him. For LSU to challenge in the SEC West, Etling has to take a big step forward for this team because they have enough talent in every other facet of the game. However, you cannot be a championship team without solid play at the quarterback position.

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If Etling can take that step forward, LSU has a tremendous defense and a dynamic rushing attack that will cause trouble for their opponents. The defense itself is capable of contending with any offense in the country and that is scary considering how bad BYU looked in their opening 20-6 victory over Portland State out of the FCS. The Cougars managed just 365 total yards in a shaky performance. The Cougars were able to muscle out 171 yards on the ground but quarterback Tanner Mangum did not look great hitting 16 of 27 passing for 194 yards and a touchdown. The offense appeared out of rhythm and never connected on any big plays to offer any lofty expectations going into this battle with LSU.

However, the Cougars defense is expected to be one of the better groups in the country this year. They held Portland State to 220 total yards and they will get better as the year progresses. So despite their offensive woes, BYU can still challenge in this game based on the play of the defense alone. If you consider how often we have mentioned LSUís offensive concerns and ability to throw the football, it is not completely impossible for BYU to score an upset in a low scoring game by both teams. In fact, if LSU does not make a few big plays down the field, I imagine BYU will sellout to stop the run which could really complicate things for the Tigers offense.

I believe BYU will need to put extra hope towards the line of scrimmage to stop LSUís rushing attack. BYUís defense is really good but LSU is extremely physical along the trenches. Running back Derrius Guice comes into 2017 on the heels of a 1,387 yard season and 15 touchdowns. What makes those numbers even more impressive is the fact that 129 carries was shared with the injury ridden Leonard Fournette. With Guice promising to carry the load this season, the potential is there for a really big season from the junior tailback. I have high expectations for Guice behind LSUís offensive line this year and I think their running game will be the difference in this game.

Jay's Pick to Cover the Point Spread: I think LSU wins this game but would not be surprised if BYU hangs close and keeps this game interesting especially if LSU has a bad offensive performance. Instead, I think the best bet in this game is the under 48. I expect defenses to dominate this game and scoring should be limited for both teams. Good luck!

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NCAA Football Week 5 Betting Previews

Here are some additional game previews from this week's college football card.

Free Picks

Editor's Picks - Each weekend our very own in-house All-American Editor makes his NCAA point spread predictions in an attempt to force fumbles, sack and intercept your bookie!

Expert College Football Picks - Free premium college foots plays against the spread from expert handicappers from around the web from week 1 through the National Championship.

Underdog of the Week Pick - We sort through it all and find out which University is getting "too many points" this week. If there was a Heisman Trophy for picking underdogs, we'd be a frontrunner. Expect a 57%+ winning percentage with these picks as we've got a keen ear for loud barking dogs.

Line Movement - NCAA football lines open early in the week and often times move up or down based on wagering activity, injuries to key players and weather. We decipher whether it's square or wiseguy action and predict the point spread winner based on value.

College Football Consensus Picks - We assess the public perception each week and let them pick the winners for us as we fade their selections which provides us with many trips into our bookies endzone.

Computer Picks - We enter them into the computer and the machine makes it's picks. This is a great guide especially when betting totals! These are available after the first few weeks of the season.

Trends - Despite what you have been told or read on tout sites, the trend ain't your friend. We however turn the tables and fade the almighty trend for what should be some great profits over time.

2017/2018 College Football Predictions - Bob gives his picks to win each major conference. At the end, he gives his prediction on who thinks will win the 2018 National Championship game at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on January 8th.

2017 Heisman Trophy Predictions - USC QB Sam Darnold is a heavy pre-season favorite to win college football's most coveted award, but Jay isn't buying it. In fact, he's passing up the top (3) favored players in favor of a QB who he's confident will be NCAA football's best player in 2017.

2017-2018 College Football Championship Predictions - NCAA football experts have the Alabama Crimson Tide running away with the National Championship this season and who can blame them? Roll Tide is LOADED! It never happens that easy though. The USC Trojans (+825), Florida St. Seminoles (+850) and Ohio St. Buckckeyes (+875) all have a legit shot. Oddsmakers have Oklahoma (+1300) on the bubble and everybody looking from the outside in at 20/1 or higher. Jay gives his pick to win it all along with how his top 15 rankings for season's end. Get your bets in early before your favorite team's line drops!

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Heisman Trophy Betting Odds - USC QB Sam Darnold starts the season off as a heavy favorite at +350 odds. Sooners QB Baker Mayfield is second on the list at +700 but can he keep his nose clean? Louisville QB Lamar Jackson should dominate this season but will Louisville be taken seriously? Oregon Ducks RB Royce Freeman is worth a pop at 60/1 if he gets the carries. Bama WR Calvin Ridley brings experience and big-time playmaking ability and will be featured on National TV a bunch, giving him a legit darkhorse shot. But will they throw the ball enough with a QB who likes to run? Missing from this year's list of odds is a defensive player.

Odds to Win the 2017 College Football Championship - The Alabama Crimson Tide are heavy favorites to win the National Championship this year at 5/2 followed by Ohio St. at 13/5, USC at 7/1 and FSU at 17/2. Things drop off a bit with the Oklahoma Sooners coming in at 12/1, Auburn Tigers at 14/1 and Michigan Wolverines at 16/1. Check out your favorite school's odds here!

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