San Jose State Spartans (0-1) at No. 11 Wisconsin Badgers (1-0), Week 2 College Football, Saturday, September 11, 2010 Camp Randall, Madison, WI, 12pm ET ESPN
by Evergreen of Predictem.com
Point Spread: Wiscy -37.5/SJSU +37.5
Over/Under Total: 54.5
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Week two of NCCA Football is here and the Wisconsin Badgers will welcome the San Jose State Spartans to Madison for their 2010 home opener. There are some very juicy matchups featuring Big Ten teams this weekend and while this one doesnt match one like Michigan v. Notre Dame, the game is featured in the 12 ET slot on ESPN. San Jose St. will look to pull a big upset at Camp Randall and will be prepared as they can be after facing No. 1 Alabama last week, and the Badgers will be motivated to put on a good showing not only for the fans but also to impress the voters to make them a top-10 team nationally.
Las Vegas opened with Wisconsin as heavy 37 point favorites and that is about what you are going to find at the offshore betting sites with most listing the Badgers at -37.5 or 38. The money line info is a bit scarce at this point, but early lines have SJSU around +10000 and UW in the -30000 to -575 range with the over/under total at 54.5 or 55.
It was not surprising to see the Spartans drop the opener at Bama, but it was a little surprising to see how little offense they could muster. State finished the game with only 175 total yards and could manage only a field goal on the way to a 48-3 drubbing. There is no doubt that the defensive talent at Alabama is among the best in the country, but youd have to say that the San Jose St. offense resembles the 2009 unit that ranked outside the top-115 in rush offense, total offense and points scored. The Badger defense wont be much of a step down for the Spartans either as UW limited UNLV to 217 total yards in the desert last Saturday night.
The Badgers cruised to a 41-21 win against the Rebels last week but dropped to 0-1 against the spread after two first half turnovers allowed UNLV to stay close. The Wisconsin offense, especially the running game looks as good as any right now and featured three different backs on the way to 278 rush yards for the game. The Badgers have to be looking forward to facing a SJSU defense that gave up 257 rushing yards and 591 total yards to the Tide.
Somewhere along the line San Jose State will have to get some positive plays on offense and need some more consistent play out of QB Jordan La Secla who managed only 85 yards on 50% completions last week. Brandon Rutley could find some success out of the backfield as he was able to average a respectable 4.0 yards per carry last week, but the wide receivers are undersized and will struggle to shake the Badger secondary.
John Clay proved he is at full strength in rushing for 123 yards with two scores and seemed plenty fast despite looking like he weighed significantly more than the reported 252 pounds. Montee Ball and James White added 138 rushing yards and two more scores to give Wisconsin three threats out of the backfield. Scott Tolzien had a solid day in completing 15 of 20 throws, but gift wrapped a TD by telegraphing a throw that ended up in an easy pick-six for UNLV.
San Jose State will look to reverse a streak that has them winless against the spread in their last nine on the road and are only 1-6 ATS in the last seven against teams that enter with a .500 record or better. Wisconsin likes the home cooking; posting a 4-1 ATS mark in the last five at the Camp and are perfect against the spread in the last five against sub-.500 opponents.
The injury reports for both teams are relatively clean, but San Jose State is reporting LB Pompey Festejo as out with a foot injury and Wisconsin lists LB Mike Taylor as doubtful with a knee although reports indicate he could see some playing time. Backup QB Curt Phillips is also listed as out for the Badgers with a knee injury.
Evergreenss Pick to Cover the Spread: The SJSU coaching staff is giving high praise to Wisconsin, comparing them very closely to the Alabama team they just faced. They will definitely face the same pro-style offense and punishing line play and an outright upset seems all but impossible, especially on the road. The Badgers proved they can play to their competition last week but a clean game would have had the 41-21 decision looking a lot more like 50-10. 38 is ton to give up, but I think you have to take the Badgers in the home opener, especially given how efficient the defense looked and how dominating the offensive line was in opening holes for whichever back was toting the rock. Wisconsin 47 San Jose State 7.